JAWS – Hope and Ruin, Brighton (8th December 2015) – LIVE REVIEW

This JAWS article was written by Daisy Lester, a GIGsoup contributor. Edited by Natalie Whitehouse.

Since bursting out of the ‘B-Town’ music scene in 2012 alongside peers Swim Deep, Peace and Superfood, JAWS have built themselves an allegiance of dedicated fans with their smooth indie pop sound and contagious, well-crafted tracks. Their acclaimed EP releases followed by their 2014 debut album ‘Be Slowly’ helped them cement a packed festival season, and now they have embarked on a huge UK tour, drawing equally large crowds each night.

First on stage at Brighton’s Hope and Ruin was Sheffield duo Nai Harvest. The two piece have nailed the art of pop tinged garage, and are easily one of the most exciting live bands around. The three minute epic ‘Sick On My Heart’ and ‘Melanie’ from their debut ‘Hairball’ were made louder and heavier, the blistering tracks almost enough to set the modest and tame Brighton crowd into a mosh. ‘Buttercups’ was met with driving guitars and an acute sense of organised chaos, whilst ‘Ocean of Madness’ proved anthemic. The duo are seemingly perpetually getting better.

The JAWS set opened with track ‘What We Haven’t Got Yet’, a new one from their upcoming album, giving a tease of their adapted grungier sound. Drawing heavily from their debut ‘Be Slowly’, the infectious ‘Think Too Much, Feel Too Little’, ‘Stay In’ and ‘NYE’ proved favourites with the eclectic audience, ranging from post punk 70’s band The Fall’s old tour manager, to teenagers who knew every word. Frontman Connor Schofield epitomises shy confidence; there isn’t much stage talk, it’s purely the music and that’s not a bad thing.

The heavier ‘Bad Company’ diverges away from their usual breezy indie pop, showcasing a welcomed grittier side. The defining JAWS sound was concluded with their set finale, the tranquil and crowd pleasing ‘Gold’. It seems like the cult surrounding the quartet is ever expanding and deservingly so, their timeless guitar pop and effortless 80’s and 90’s sound hasn’t got boring quite yet.