The other night I headed down to The Rainbow Warehouse in Digbeth, Birmingham, to see new up-and-coming beach-grunge rockers Peace and supporting bands. There has been a lot of hype about the current music scene in Birmingham and I wanted to go and experience the ‘gnarly vibes’ for myself considering Birmingham used to be my stomping ground.
The venue was everything you could ever want from a grunge gig, it was decent sized and the walls were painted black with obscure colourful artwork all over the walls, probably not the best place to take a tab of lsd. The variety of drinks wasn’t much, larger or cider was the choice but at the end of the day you come for the music, getting leathered is just part of the deal.
Being typically me, I turned up late and only caught the last song of Jaws’ set – ‘Surround You’. The track felt so summary and bright, it almost made me forget that we were in middle of winter, two days before Christmas. Lead vocalist, Connor droans the lyrics ‘Let the wind blow through your hair, Send me crazy with your stare’ which is incredibly infectious to sing along to and I highly recommend everyone to take a listen.
Next up on the bill were special guests Swim Deep who’s style gives you nostalgia and longing to be back in the 90’s. They played the song ‘King City’ which got the crowd so energetic, the speakers in the warehouse were massive. (I remember them being about eight foot but I’m not sure if the alcohol was clouding my judgment) During ‘King City’ which has to be everyone’s summer anthem because it’s just so dreamy, fans of the band and apparently supporting band members were climbing these stupidly large speakers and then diving from such a great height into the body of the crowd. Outstanding to watch!
After Swim Deep finished their electric set the band who we call came to see took the stage. Harrison Koisser was sporting one of his many delectable coats and Doug was wrapped up in Christmas lights. Peace’s set was perfect, during ‘California Daze’ the crowd got out their lighters and swayed in time, I even saw couples slow dancing. The atmosphere was so romantic, it definitely felt like we were all in it together. Although the crowd was mellow at the right moments, as soon as ‘1998 (delicious)’ was played the crowd went ballistic – the guitar solo during is enough to send anyone into a state of trance. But the highlight of Peace’s set for me was the moment when the crowd wanted to get closer and closer to the band but there were barriers at the front preventing the crowd getting near. During ‘Wraith’ (I think) the crowd lifted up the barriers, carried them back over the tops of their heads and then through them out of the big side doors into the rain.
Everyone cheered! I was talking to some people after the gig about the barrier incident and we were discussing how we really felt part of something, especially now there were talks of the band really breaking through into the industry. Without a doubt that was the best gig I had ever been too, it was so intimate and raw. I know that I will definitely be going to see them again!