The Wanted
O2 Apollo, Stockport Road, Manchester
Tuesday, March 29

IF the screams of nearly 3,000 teenage girls are to be believed — and having heard them it is difficult not to — The Wanted have made it into the big time.

Having just embarked on their first headline tour, the show is loosely based around a pun on the name “The Wanted” — as Tonge Moor boy Tom Parker let slip to The Bolton News last month. A big screen shows a mocked-up Sky News report painting the boys as diamond thieves, before they appear on stage in “convict” costumes — albeit highly styled and baby-oiled convicts.

The balcony at the Apollo has never felt quite so precarious as during second song Lose My Mind, as the pressure of so many bouncing fans makes it physically move, while the screaming becomes almost delirious after former Bolton School boy Max George introduces the band. During A Good Day For Love to Die they seat themselves on the edge of the stage — almost causing a rush as fans dash past security guards hoping for a hug or a kiss — while later in the show the five-piece actually walk through the crowd, with predictably hysterical results.

Rather than a host of backing dancers they had a four-piece band on stage with them, including a guitarist whose hair suggested he had been transported straight from the 1970s, but mid show they took up instruments themselves for a semi-acoustic set. The screams died down a little for versions of High and Low, Golden and a cover of the Goo Goo Dolls’ Iris, but it was only a brief reprieve before a third costume change — this time into sharp suits, a very good look for the boys — and renewed pandemonium.

A new song, Lightning, a Taio Cruz medley and first hit single All Time Low as an encore and the boys’ places in the hearts of their fans was assured.

As for me, my ears are still ringing.