Yorkshire band Exit Calm nonchalantly line-checked in the basement venue of Broadcast as fans huddled together patiently. The northern rock band didn’t seem so out of place in one of Glasgow’s newest small venues, until they started to play.
Exit Calm epitomise British rock of the 21st Century, with their sound falling somewhere between both Oasis and Kasabian’s more chilled out tracks. This is potentially obvious from their image before they even utter a word. Outgrown Weller haircuts, hats and sharp outfits filled the stage before the opening bars of first track The Rapture did.
A beautifully melancholy tale, the track ends with frontman Nicky Smith singing about ‘a story that will never be told’ which is a bit unjustly ironic of the whole evening. For a northern rock band with some great stories to sing us, it’s a shame that theirs hasn’t been told in quite the same way as the likes of their festival-headlining counterparts.
By the time third track Albion was being played, Smith had already stripped off his hat and outer-garments, the heat in the basement room becoming a bit overwhelming for all. Well, all except guitarist Rob Marshall who kept his big wool-blend winter coat on. He is deserved of admiration, for his ability to not faint if nothing else.
But he also put in one of the best performances of the night. His guitar skills and use of effects on songs like latest single Promise and Holy War were executed fantastically live.
Personal favourite Higher Bound was a treat live. The stripped back ballad-like track was channelled with emotion from Nicky Smith as he repeated the words “I know you came to blow my mind”. His vocals were pitch perfect as he sang the tale of a life changing and being turned upside down.
Closing on Open Your Sky, a track which can only be described as their Champagne Supernova, with its slower pace and stoner vibe. Between the clashing and distorting guitars, Smith does his best Gallagher impression, howling the words out like his life depended on it (though without the stupid ‘bend-to-the-microphone’ that Liam is fond of).
It was a fitting end to the short set to say the least. As Exit Calm’s songs average around the five minute mark, there weren’t a lot of actual songs in their set which was cut short to make way for the venue’s club night. However it was still a great set from a somewhat underrated band.