The Wytches + God Damn + Adore, The Sunflower Lounge, Birmingham 27/02/14

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The Wytches (with Thomas Edwards of God Damn)
Every once in a while, you get to experience a concert that is truly spectacular. Be it a band you adore in a tiny, tightly-packed venue, or a spectacle on stage that somehow leaves you speachless and screaming for more. The Wytches’ headline gig at The Sunflower Lounge was one such show. In front of a room maxed out at its capacity, three bands showcased exactly what live music is all about.
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Adore
Adore opened the show, live and loud, raw and raucous, exactly as it should be. Their set marked the three-piece’s return to the live circuit after several months of honing their sound, and boy, did it show. Their gritty grunge songs – powered by driving rhythms and melodic vocals – left little else to be desired, whilst the energetic performance kept the whole room hooked. If the smiles on peoples faces weren’t an indicator of enjoyment, their exclamations of “how GOOD?” were certainly a giveaway.
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God Damn
Performing in front of an audience half the size of their headline show at the Hare & Hounds the month previous, God Damn were heralded as heroes. They propelled through an elongated set before their hometown crowd with a prowess that remains unrivalled. Favourites from their Heavy Money EP mixed with new songs as the band drowned and near-deafened the room with their much-loved material.
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God Damn
Mosh pits and crowdsurfers are all common sites at the two-piece’s shows, but this time the duo took it to the next level: after launching himself on top of the crowd, frontman Thomas Edwards sent half the drum kit sailing around the room, whilst Ash Weaver valiantly played on. There are plenty of reasons why God Damn are surrounded by so much devotion – this night only served to exemplify them.
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The Wytches
Untoppable, you say? Probably. But that certainly didn’t hinder The Wytches for a moment. Freshly signed to Heavenly Recordings, there’s no doubting the band are at the top of their game. The trio took to the stage – drum kit restored firmly back in place – and instantly held the whole room in the palm of their hands. In contrast to God Damn’s anarchic approach, The Wytches were more unstirred, unsettling, captivating a crowd who didn’t hesitate to throw themselves (and the person next to them) into the music.
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The Wytches
Whilst the band may have been promoting new material – a free cassette of which was freely available at the upstairs merch tables – it took the favourites to really cast a spell on the audience: ‘Digsaw,’ ‘Beehive Queen,’ and ‘Crying Clown’ had the room in uprawr, and by the shows end, people were spilling onto the small stage as each of the three band members crowdsurfed their way to the back of the room and to safety.
Energetic, anarchic, and excessively loud: The Wytches, God Damn, and Adore banded together to show just why you ought to stand up and pay attention. If you weren’t there to see it? Well, that’s your loss to deal with. We wouldn’t trade it for the world.
Photographs by Rob Hadley