Spector + JAWS + Babypink, Hare & Hounds, Birmingham 15/10/13

With the venue already filling up early on, first to take to the stage were local band Babypink. Bringing their raw indie rock sound to the room, they had the whole crowd entranced from the word go.

The set had a polished intensity, getting the whole room moving when they performed the blissful ‘Petrichor’, and by the time they ended with debut track ‘Feeble’ they had everyone well and truly warmed up for the rest of the night.

Hometown heroes JAWS were up next bringing their chilled, surf-pop tunes and making the night seem so summery we almost all forgot the bitter weather outside. By this point the room was packed and JAWS were met with a massive response and sing-alongs echoing throughout the venue. They stormed through their set of fan favourites including single ‘Gold’ and classic ‘Stay In’ before closing the mesmerizing set with ‘Surround You’.

By now the crowd were more than ready for Spector, and as the suited-and-booted London four-piece sauntered on stage (alongside the sounds of no less than Kanye West’s ‘Bound 2’) and straight into singalong hit ‘What You Wanted’ everyone went every shade of mental. The band, fronted by the ever eccentric Fred Macpherson, had boundless energy and performed crowd favourite ‘Friday Night…Don’t Ever Let It End’ as if it actually was a neverending Friday night – rather than a slightly depressing Tuesday.
Macpherson’s banter with the crowd was unrelenting with such gems as requesting we “take this from good… to better than good” and pausing the set mid-way to facetime a fan; everyone’s more than happy to indulge him but luckily there’s a decent band behind the frontman cockiness too. They play a new track that they insist we’ll all be as excited about as ‘Chevy Thunder’ by this time next year, and it certainly goes down a treat, but the best moments of the night come with the singles ‘Chevy Thunder’ and ‘Celestine’ when everyone gets moving and Macpherson welcomes crowdsurfers with open arms.

Spector seem genuinely excited to be here, throwing in a few mini impromptu covers of local legends Peace, Swim Deep and Jaws, paying homage to Editors and The Twang, and generally applauding Birmingham’s homegrown music scene. Before they leave, Macpherson announces that “sometimes when we enter Birmingham we don’t want to leave – this is one of those times”, and it definitely seems like the same sentiment all round. Closing with ‘Never Fade Away’ after inviting everyone along to the afterparty, there didn’t seem to be a single onlooker refusing the temptation to sing and sway along, leaving the room with an incredible atmosphere long after Spector left the stage.
Photographs by Paul Reynolds.
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The Killers superfan and passionate about all things new and upcoming. Other faves include The Arkells, Tokyo Police Club and Walk The Moon.

Beth Coveney

The Killers superfan and passionate about all things new and upcoming. Other faves include The Arkells, Tokyo Police Club and Walk The Moon.