I arrived at Bath’s comedy hotspot venue, Komedia, to a thick snake of people lining the neighbouring buildings, chanting “Glass Animals” in great unison until it slowly dissolved back into the loud chatter it grew from moments before. Why aren’t all gig queues always this enthusiastic!?
I’d stumbled across the four piece when searching for new music using Spotify’s ‘discover’ feature a couple of years ago, and not long after that they started gaining airtime on Radio 1. I was hooked on their single ‘Gooey’ from the beginning, much like I am for the salty-sweet, sticky spread of peanut butter (crunchy over smooth, always). This was Glass Animals’ first gig in Bath and it sold out, with lustrous virginal beards, tweed jackets and curly teased hair in messy half buns filling the venue, and to my annoyance, the bar.
Whoever the support band were (didn’t catch their name), they are worth giving a miss. A trio of super laid-back ladies playing sometimes toe-tapping but largely uninspiring music. It didn’t seem to bother the crowd, as after every song an encouraging cheer would wake me up at the bar. They reminded me of the days spent in music class gently fondling a keyboard, not knowing how many times to press a sequence of keys before it actually sounded like music. The accompaniment just didn’t marry. Or was that the point?
Welcomed with a roar, Glass Animals took to the stage and broke into their first song of the night. Frontman and lead singer Dave Bayley’s voice is a whispering lover, sharing sweet, dirty secrets into your ear. The energy pumps into the crowd with every powerful kick of the bass drum.
It’s a great thing to hear and see an ethereal, chill out band adapt their music for a live performance really well. The lively sea of bobbing heads and hands were testament to their efforts. Not least the frontman’s damn funky dance moves. There was even a small attempt at crowd surfing!
I was surprised again and again by the arrangement of hypnotising melodies that drew the crowd in and blew their hands skywards with the hit hit hit of that beautiful bass drum and bass guitar! The hand tambourine was brought out for ‘Hazy’ and lived on through its first battering to survive the next song.
If you thought Glass Animals would be a super chilled vibe gig with a slow easy crowd and instrument absorbed band members, you’d be wrong. They said goodbye to their crowd with a slow, soft number but were, of course, coaxed back on stage with one of the highlights of the night – A cover of Kanye’s ‘Love Lockdown’. Well, bloody, played, lads.