Live Review

Surfer Blood, Digital, Brighton

Surfer Blood are better than this.

There’s something devilish and deceptive about concert audiences in Brighton - they’re so erratic in their receptiveness. The support band tonight, the well-hyped and hugely talented No Joy, receive a cold welcome starkly lacking in enthusiasm and totally undeserving of such fine musicians.

As to be expected, the crowd becomes a little fuller and perkier for Surfer Blood, but the band are distinctly average. They’re clearly very good musicians, but there’s very little connection with attendees.

Opening with ‘Floating Vibes’, it quickly becomes clear they’re in difficulty. Percussionist Marcos Marchesani is missing, and there’s not enough energy going into the songs. For a band that have been so successful in manoeuvring themselves through the music industry, this is dire.

It’s a new song, which is surprisingly well received, that leads to the revival of interaction between fans and the band. Then, further into the set, ‘Swim’ is powerful, near bombastic and clearly a crowd favourite; it leads nicely into a bizarre finale to tonight’s concert.

When Surfer Blood return ten minutes later, they don’t quite have the same look as when they first stepped onto the stage. There’s a new guy playing lead guitar, a member of the audience; a risky move, but at least the new addition seems to be enjoying himself.

They were lucky they managed to rescue this three-legged dog of a concert in the end; Surfer Blood are better than this.

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