Doused in green strobe lighting – the Jurassic Park theme tune at large and the inconspicuously copious amount of twelve year olds girls covered in glitter and seemingly pretending to be from the 90’s; Swim Deep were ready to play their new shoe-gaze tunes in front of the Manchester crowd.
Already having the microphone smashed to the floor and frontman Austin Williams’ oversized denim jacket on the floor, it seemed to me that there was an odd atmosphere (It felt as if Swim Deep were playing to a crowd that were just not for them) perhaps this is their new take on their style of music that has brought along way too much glitter.
The crowd set off into the classic tracks from their first album, Where The Heaven Are We, with tracks like ‘Honey’ and ‘King City’. These were the most obvious tracks to dance to, even if it was a little bit tragic. With the rise of bodies in the air and glitter falling out of one guys afro, it felt as if Swim Deep had truly lost their identity.
Mothers is their recently released second LP which gained a lot of attention for many reasons, it is great to listen to in bed or just before you go out. Live however, not so much. Swim Deep pushed the crowd into a frenzy with tracks ‘One Great Song And I Could Change The World’ and ‘Grand Affection’, which didn’t really feel right. There was a strong disconnection from the crowd and to the band – it almost felt uncomfortable.
The pink lighting fell again and so did the atmosphere with ‘To My Brother’, which is a really good track on the album, but just doesn’t need the jumping and pushing (almost-moshing) it is almost too much. What is wrong with just calming and doing the casual head-bop?
Not sure of how to take the gig and graciously stepping back, I decided that some albums are best kept for easy-listening at home, and that maybe sometimes bands don’t always experiment for the better.