Jaws are a breath of fresh air to an indie fan (or indie journalist, for that matter), in that they don’t meticulously plan every move they make for the benefit of who might be watching. The Birmingham trio sound the way they want to rather than what others might expect them to. Their pièce de résistance is a shake-up of indie pop and alt rock in one fine-tuned package; the kind of brilliant combination that inflicts upon their audiences with ease.
A sold-out Tufnell Park Dome was abuzz with excitement leading up to the band taking to the stage, with fans across the room all half-cut and eager to catch a glimpse of this mysterious but no doubt talented outfit. Jaws, as one of the frontrunners of the “B-Town” scene, had the pleasure of cultivating their career at the same time as some of their friends— Peace and Swim Deep, for example. While the latter two shipped off to London and signed to major labels, however, Jaws remained in Birmingham, holding down jobs outside of the band and inevitably staying true to their roots. It might not be everything that the trio want, but to the fans it means everything.
It wasn’t unexpected to have most of the set list consisting of material from the band’s most recent album, Simplicity, and it was the most touching sight to see the crowd screaming along every word. The album only came out earlier this month, but music fans from the capital city always have a knack for learning quickly and bewildering the band that is playing before them. The odd track from Jaws’ debut album, Be Slowly, was also thrown in, pleasing the older fans who were dotted around the room, solemnly sipping from a pint of cider and black.
Jaws have an undeniably captivating stage presence— it’s nonchalance at its finest, and if you took away the musical aspect it would simply be three twenty-something boys who would probably rather play FIFA than cook themselves dinner. It’s the casual stance of them all that sells however, and their fans just couldn’t seem to get enough of them as they powered through a strategically assembled set list.
‘Right In Front Of Me’ and ‘What We Haven’t Got Yet’ stirred up quite the reaction; what are arguably the two biggest tracks on Simplicity, sending the crowd in to a frenzy which might have resembled a mosh pit if there hadn’t been a few beers shared around earlier on. Still, it’s clear to see that Jaws are quite capable of invoking something deep within their fans. Luckily, if you haven’t yet been able to cash in on the hype yet, the band will play a handful of shows in April next year in London, Manchester and Oxford.