Against The Current pay their first visit to Bristol on the opening night of their UK tour promoting the new album, In Our Bones.

Opening the proceedings is Beach Weather who’s gear was lost by the airline on the way over. Fortunately, the following band — As It Is — lent them their gear for the show.

The local crowd well receives their short, five-song set with the Beach Weather brand of chart-friendly indie pop rock earning a hail of applause. This show marks the band’s second visit to Bristol this year, and some of the crowd apparently caught them the last time round. “Swoon” has them singing along before a mad guitar break in the middle of the song. The great set is over too soon, and the audience are left wanting more.

Their song, “Chit Chat”, is due to be released on an EP of the same name in mid-October.

Next up is As It Is, from Brighton. The young five-piece play a set of pop rock to an audience of equally young fans, many of which seem to be here for them. With a sound akin to Sum 41, Fall Out Boy, and the like, they certainly have the fans to match. Their lively set sees them jumping around on stage, and encouraging the crowd to do the same. The sponsorship deal with Converse shoes will follow soon for sure!

They have just recorded their second LP, due for release in January 2017. As It Is treated the house to the first public performance of the album title track, “Okay,” which goes down well, and sounds great.

“Sorry” and “Can’t Save Myself” have the crowd choir singing every word. Patty works the audience well using the stage to show his skill as a great frontman. Like the opener, As It Is play a short set of just eight songs, and the crowd are left wanting.

Against The Current are delayed in starting, but receive a rousing welcome when they finally hit the stage covered in thick smoke and bathed in bright light. The New York band have quite a following – this first gig of the tour is sold-out, and fans packing the Fleece are ready.

Normally a three-piece of Chrissy Costanza on vocals, Dan Gow on guitar, and Will Ferri on drums, tonight they have an extra guitar and bass for the live show, adding depth to their sound.

After opening with “Runaway,” Chrissy tells the crowd, “This is our first time in Bristol, so let’s make it awesome”. And they do, launching into “Forget Me Now” with the crowd singing along to every word.

Chrissy is lively and Dan flits between mics on each side of the stage. Chrissy chats up the audience between the songs, often talking over the intros. “Chasing Ghosts” is introduced to a big cheer, clearly a crowd fave. “Roses” follows before we learn of the band’s long journey from their last gig in Taipei, which had been put back due to a typhoon.

The band are well-known for putting covers into their sets, and tonight they play their version of “Teenagers” from My Chemical Romance. The audience loves it, singing along to the popular hit.

“Blood Like Gasoline” is another new track from In Our Bones, which ATC performs live for the first time.

An acoustic section features the three sitting on stools across the stage, Dan with an acoustic guitar and Will with shaker and tambourine. The band play an acoustic version of “Infinity” before the extra guitar and bass join in for the title track of the new album, “In Our Bones”.

“Wasteland”, is the last song written for the album and, Chrissy tells us, is about the music industry and the shit they feed you. A great song for sure.

Explaining to the crowd that there is no room to go off-stage before an encore, Chrissy decides they will stay on, and finish their set with “Dreaming Alone”, which has the crowd waving their arms from side to side in unison, before leaving us with the fantastic “Gravity”.

Their performance over, the band made a splash in Bristol and their local fans look forward to their return visit.

Beach Weather
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As It Is
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Against The Current
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The Fleece
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Photo credit: Donna Combs

Show Date: 21-Sep-2016

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