Fragile Creatures – The Brunswick – 23rd February 2018

Photo by Ben Walker

In their first show of 2018, Fragile Creatures return to the Brighton scene and bring with them a feel good start to the weekend whilst showcasing some of the freshest rising talents coming out of Brighton.

Opening tonight are Bloom, whose fresh style of indie-pop and fluffy melodies are enough to bring a smile to even the coldest of nights. The band have a great deal of fun whilst performing, with smiles and chemistry constantly ongoing through the duration of their set. The group’s vocalists bounce off each other brilliantly and generate some truly graceful harmonies whilst some incredible bass work brings a remarkable sense of funk to the performance.

Following this were Chasing Deer, who brought a very different but warmly welcomed style of ballad-led fun. Vocalist Rob Hodkinson is a born performer and dominates the smaller stage with a great deal of enthusiasm and passion for what he does. The almost show-tune tone to his voice is somewhat unconventional for this style of music but works incredibly well, bringing forth some more feel good vibes to the venue. Both of these bands are definitely worth keeping an eye on and will surely bring a great deal of joy to many over their coming shows.

As Fragile Creatures enter the stage, the eccentricity behind their style of performance immediately shows through, with puns and humour sparking between lead vocalist Adam Kidd and keyboardist Aaron Neville. This sort of engagement between band members already had the crowd on board and, as the opening track ‘Leave It Alone’ shows its face, the room fills with an ambient sound of summery riffs and optimistic vibes. The first half of tonight’s set is an array of tracks from the group’s 2016 debut record, …And Other Wild Things, ‘The Chemicals’ and ‘You Don’t Get It’ all make welcomed appearances and the room can be seen gleefully bouncing along.

The elephant in the room tonight is the selection of technical difficulties: firstly the piano isn’t working, then is too loud, then the bass is infested with what Adam refers to as, “Amp Gremlins”. Whilst interrupting the flow of the set, this by no means destroys the atmosphere and the group are more than capable of filling the interludes with strong levels of jest and interaction with the crowd before seamlessly flowing into the highly fitting ‘Mess We’re In’. Technical issues aside, Adam’s vocals are strong and the guitar work even stronger, the solo work is tight and lands well almost every time, bringing with them a great deal of buzz to spread into the venue.

The latter half of the set is made of new tracks from Fragile Creatures’ second record, set to be released later this year. The newer material certainly holds a greater level of maturity in its tones compared with the innocence of the debut, but is by no means less engaging. The unique quirk that Fragile Creatures thrive off is still more than prevalent and only continues to keep the crowd on board. Ending with ‘The Big Red Button’, which is definitely a track worth waiting for, the demand for an encore is deafening, forcing the group to bring out their fan favourite ‘Stowaways’. The room morphs into one final flourish of chants and dancing and it can be seen all around that both the crowd and band have come away with smiles on their faces and a great feeling to start the weekend.

Overall a night with Fragile Creatures is an interesting one: it’s eclectic, fast paced and nonsensical in the very best of ways! There is a great deal of buzz around Fragile Creatures and I’m sure this will be the first of many more terrific shows this year. With the group’s new release around the corner, Fragile Creatures are certainly a name you’ll see popping up over and again in the Brighton scene.

Ben Walker