Monsta X, Starship Entertainment’s biggest boy group, took London by storm as part of the European leg of their We Are Here tour. Performing at the SSE Arena, it was an upgrade from their stop at Hammersmith back in the summer of 2018.

The seven-membered group made up of members Shownu, Kihyun, Hyungwon, Joohoney I.M, Wonho, and Minhyuk, are known for their darker, sultrier discography, most of which was performed through a three hour long show that went by much too quickly. Expressing regret over their 2018 performance getting cut short due to a late finish, Monsta X made sure they started early enough so that they could really show London what a Monsta X concert is all about. Even for a warm summer evening, the group only heated things up even more.

Kicking things off with the introductory titular track from Take 1. Are You There?, before the catchy 'Shoot Out' segued nicely into R&B track 'Mohae'. Steve Aoki collab 'Play It Cool' was a crowd favourite, and gave such a different energy performed live with member Joohoney performing his English separately to satisfy those who wanted to hear “I speak French oui.”

It’s not a real K-pop concert without some solo stages. Members Minhyuk, Hyungwon and Kihyun (jokingly calling themselves the leftovers) were the first subunit of the evening with a cover of Bazzi’s 'Myself'. For some leftovers, the cover was a great testament to the group’s sultriness.

Wonho and Shownu showed off a mesmerising performance of 'Mirror', but the highlight came from rappers I.M and Joohoney. 'Sambakja' is a self-composed track by the two members performed exclusively at live shows that also features a drum solo from Joohoney. The energy of two members filled the entire arena, leaving no-one unsure of the talent of these rappers. It’s the song I remember the most from the evening and why you have to experience a Monsta X gig for yourself.

Finally, there was some slightly emotional commentary from each member as the night came to an end. I.M said it best when he said that their fans (called Monbebe) were the foundation of the group. It’s a sentiment that then blended nicely into the sickly sweet 'By My Side' for the farewell stage.

Dare I say it? The evening in the smaller SSE Arena was better than behemoths BTS at neighbouring Wembley Stadium. Monsta X are rougher and less refined on stage - in a good way. There’s solid execution paired up with fiery passion, helped by the intensity of the rappers who then claimed that they’re the best rappers and team in K-pop. Debatable, sure but you’ll for sure catch me there again.