Wayward Sons – Sheffield O2 Academy 2 – Sheffield, UK – 4/20/18

Review and Pictures: Nicky Barker

I saw Wayward Sons for the first time in January when they supported Steel Panther along with Inglorious.  In my opinion Wayward Sons stole the show, so when a UK tour was announced I couldn’t wait to see them as headliners.  The band are currently on a 12 date UK tour promoting their debut album “Ghosts of Yet To Come“.

Wayward Sons are fronted by ex-Little Angels vocalist Toby Jepson along with Sam Wood on guitar, Nic Wastell (Chrome Molly) on bass, Dave Kemp on keys, and Phil Martini (Tokyo Dragons) on drums.

They were formed by Toby in 2016.  Their  name is derived from the lyric in the Little Angels song ‘Kicking Up Dust‘ – “Johnny never cared ‘bout nobody cause no-one cared ’bout John. He’s crawled his way this far through life he’s the original wayward son”. THAT Wayward Son, in turn, was paraphrased by Toby from the Kansas song of the same name representing the spirit of freedom.

The evening began with short film showing four videos of songs from the new album.  Then rather unconventionally, instead of a support band to warm the audience up, the opening act was stand up comedian Peter K Mally who did a brief set of light-hearted, rock related jokes.  He seemed to go down quite well with the audience and got quite a few good laughs.  After his set he gave out copies of his new book covered with Phil Martinis’ sweat…yes I did say sweat!  He then went straight into introducing the main act, Wayward Sons.  

The band exploded on stage in full force playing the first song on their album ‘Alive‘ and it was clear they meant business.  They continued with vitality, playing the riff heavy, classic hard rock songs with catchy melodies from the album.  There are no rock ballads on the album, just full on heavy rock tunes, which translate extremely well in the live music environment. 

The band play with such passion; and for a band that have been together only 2 short years, are as tight and unified as any band that have been together 10 times that number.  Toby’s voice was in fine form, sounding just as good now as the Little Angels days. The vintage 70’s guitar riffs from the very young, hugely talented Sam Wood were superb. The crowd were also on form singing along energetically with the relatively new songs.  We were also treated to a couple of unreleased numbers not on the album ‘Standby Heart‘ and ‘Radio Denial‘.  Of course the ex-Little Angels front man couldn’t do a set and not add a couple of Angels numbers, singing ‘Kicking up Dust‘ and finally bringing the show to a close with ‘Young Gods‘ with a brief “Bohemian Rhapsody” snippet.

It is so good to see Toby Jepson back in front of an immensely talented bunch of musicians.  This band are going to be huge!  They already have an army of loyal fans which is growing rapidly.  After the show the band circulated around the venue meeting fans, signing merchandise and taking selfies.  These are a bunch or very modest, lovely guys.

You can see Wayward Sons throughout the UK this April and the album ‘Ghosts Of Yet To Come‘ is out now. 


Ballymena Diamond Rock Club – Fri 13th
York Fibbers – Thu 19th
Sheffield Academy 2 – Fri 20th
Newcastle Riverside – Sat 21st 
Edinburgh Mash House – Sun 22nd
Wolverhampton Slade Rooms – Tue 24th
London Islington Academy 2 – Wed 25th
Bristol The Fleece – Thu 26th
Nottingham Rock City Basement – Fri 27th
Brighton Sticky Mikes – Sun 29th
Cardiff Globe – Mon 30th


Related Links:

Wayward Sons

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Peter K. Mally

Official Site            Facebook