Against The Current - O2 Institute, Birmingham 21.09.2018

It’s an earlier show than I expected tonight – as I make my way down to O2 Institute at 6:30, hoards of fans are already teeming into the building. I hurriedly join the crowds, and before I know it I’m swept into the main room ready to see the opening band The Faim.

Hailing originally from Perth, The Faim burst onto the UK music scene fairly recently – and from their set, it’s clear why. Bursting out on stage to one of their latest singles 'My Heart Needs To Breathe', the band soon had the whole room moving along to their setlist. If you’re a fan of bands like Panic! At The Disco and Royal Blood, then I beg you to listen to 'Summer Is A Curse'. For fans of Fall Out Boy, 'Saints Of The Sinners' is the one for you. For a band with such a small discography, they’re careful to cover all bases throughout their half hour long set, ensuring they play something for everyone. They bring energy too – the vibrant, excessive sort, with singer Josh flinging himself to and fro across the stage like something possessed. A member of their team weaves through the crowd giving out free pin badges that explain ‘I Love The Faim’, one of which is now displayed rather proudly on my camera bag. They exit the stage to rapturous applause, which continues long after they leave.

It’s only a two band bill tonight, and as the lights dim, so Against The Current make their way on stage. It’s been a while since they’ve played here (the last time I can recall is back when Fall Out Boy played in Birmingham Arena at the beginning of the year), so it’s interesting to see how their newer material goes down with fans. Thankfully, they love it. The opening track 'Strangers Again' has the whole room singing along. The band talk everyone through each new single as they are played, candidly explaining how the songs came about (for example, 'Voices' was written while Chrissy was struggling with depression on tour) and what inspired them. As expected, it’s an energetic performance, with Chrissy weaving her way between band members before jumping on an ego riser in the middle of the stage. It’s a nice, varied setlist – the band touch all bases, performing songs as old as 'Running With The Wild Things' right through to 'In Our Bones'. Finishing on 'Wasteland', it’s a strong performance – I can’t wait to see what we get when they drop their newest album over the next few days.

Against The Current - https://www.facebook.com/againstthecurrentband/

The Faim - https://www.facebook.com/TheFaim/

Photos & Review - Sutcliffe Photography

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