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Review by Pippa Gilroy
Jaws are the indie Birmingham bandits that rocked Riverside and it was a truly unbelievable night. It was the second time I’ve seen the unsigned band – who I totally idolise – and the excitement was bubbling up. Equipped with their undeniable success amongst the alternative music scene, the North flocked to an unmissable moment of well-crafted tunes that had us all crashing through the floorboards.
Being at the barrier fuelled my excitement, as I felt a closer connection to the band and experienced the energy of the music. Although it’s a small-scale venue, a feeling of collective hysteria emanated from the close-knit audience.
At the beginning, the first supporting band, South London based ‘Social Contract’ were clearly nervous and anxious, but this soon blossomed into a more confident set featuring crashing melodies. They are definitely a band that hold much promise for the future; they reminded me of bands such as Blossoms, Blaenavon and Sundara Karma.
Next up was emerging Leeds band ‘Marsicans’, who treated the audience to soulful, upbeat tunes that exploded into an array of positive spirit. Although they were armed with a pop sound I don’t particularly enjoy, I relished in the response of their dedicated fans and, soon enough, I was bopping along as well. For lovers of bands such as Bombay Bicycle Club and The Maccabees, Marsicans would be right up your street.
Then one by one, each letter of the LED props illuminated into the background, spelling the word ‘JAWS’ and initiating the beginning of the main set. Screams engulfed the room as the band took the stage. The quadruple played a variety of songs taken from their ‘Be Slowly’ debut and subsequent album ‘Simplicity’ in a 60 minute set.
Popular hits such as ‘17’, ‘Think Too Much, Feel Too Little’ and ‘Right in Front of Me’ were just some of the highlights of the night, all of which created an extremely energetic response from the audience – with the addition of a whirlpool of mosh pits. The band also played some of their earlier songs such as ‘Filth’ and ‘Toucan Surf,’ which was a treat for their dedicated followers, who belted out each and every word.
Although quite stage shy, front man Connor Schofield was praised by many for his tranquil, yet quirky vocals – paired with his eye for fashion and street style. It was apparent that the band knew how successful their songs were amongst the indie scene and were dedicated to making that serene Sunday feel like a Friday night. Mementos such as set lists, drumsticks and guitar picks that were tossed into the crowd made the experience that extra bit special, and although I didn’t acquire anything, I was content with hearing some of my favourite songs played live.
The most memorable moment of the night was the concluding tune, ‘Gold’ that wrapped up the whole set and acted as the catalyst for one last sing along. The room vibrated in warmth at the perfect rendition of the dreamy hit. Overall, it was an outstanding night for the band, who packed a venue which could’ve been much bigger. With a fanbase that is growing at such a rapid rate, I hope that next time I get to have just as much fun – in the company of twice as many fans!