There have been plenty of references in recent years to the apparent ‘death of guitar music’ amongst mainstream and music-specific media alike. This statement appears to be based largely on the fact that, whereas ten or fifteen years ago young bands such as The Libertines and Arctic Monkeys were lighting up the charts and rejuvenating popular culture as a whole, the top 40 has definitively moved onto EDM and pop based singles.
One of NME’s poster boys from 2013, a year that hailed the arrival of Palma Violets and fellow Brummies Peace into the indie big leagues, Swim Deep returned for their first London show for around a year and a half. With a new album set for release in the summer, this gig marked the live premiere of their new sound.
Arriving on stage promptly at 9:30, they dived into a new song with frontman Austin warning “it’s a bit weird”. What followed was a nine minute dark psychedelic number containing the ominous refrain “this is the house of fun, we’re going to run and run”. Next up was first album hit Honey, guaranteed to get the crowd singing. They continued to intermingle old and new material during the rest of the set to an overwhelmingly positive reception.