Palma Violets | Live Review

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The venue swirls and shoves as one; a daring few even feel the need to do a little snapchat to their friends back home.

It was clear when Palma Violets released their second album that not much had changed in terms of their passion, intentions and songwriting. They remained (albeit to a subtler extent) on a quest for booze, rough guitar lines, and melodic indie romance.

Tonight at The Fleece it feels like not much has changed in the live environment either. That’s not to say their tried-and-true formula has stopped working though, the mass of young people return, clad in denim and donning glittery faces match the sense of occasion. The venue swirls and shoves as one and a daring few even feel the need to do a little snapchat to their friends back home.

Sadly though, the new tracks feel a bit flat in the scheme of things. At times it almost feels like they’re providing more of the same, just with less commitment, kind of of losing the special, spontaneous appeal that it once had. ‘Danger In The Club’ juts out as a massive exception to this though, bringing both lyrical integrity and that ever-so-relatable social realism. When the older tracks do come, well — it’s been some time since we’ve seen a mosh-pit stretch to the back pillars of the venue.

‘Rattlesnake Highway’ is dropped early on, the first track to spur the crowd into said mammoth action. Numbers that swiftly follow such as ‘We Found Love’ and ‘Best Of Friends’ also see similar scenes breakout. Of course, there’s no denying these guys still have gravitas and purpose — but this ramshackle approach probably won’t keep people engaged forever.

The coarse, deepened London croons of both Sam Fryar and Chilli Jesson remain at the forefront of their dynamic, but you can’t help feeling that the songwriting needs to throw a curveball somewhere, as relief from murky guitar-lines. Despite this, the poignantly rowdy nature of their old tracks still grabs people by the throat. ‘Step Up For The Cool Cats’ feels like an eruption of emotion, before the night ending with an appropriate stage invasion. Palma Violets can still provide a good bit of escapism, and it’ll be interesting to see how they develop over the next few years.

Check out ‘Danger In The Club’ right here: