LIVE REVIEW: Superfood – Bristol


Thekla, Bristol, March 2017

Words: Lewis Rogers

I’ve been a huge fan of Superfood since they dropped their Mam EP back in 2014. Despite perhaps being the least well known of the bands that sprung out of Birmingham’s B-Town scene Superfood are my favourite, and after a couple of years of silence from them I’d just started to come to terms with the idea that we probably wouldn’t hear anything else from them. But it was a fantastic surprise when they returned in February with new song Double Dutch and announced that they would be headlining the Dirty Hit 2017 tour, after signing with the label for their next album. I headed to Thekla, one of my favourite gig venues, for the Bristol show to check out what Superfood have been cooking up! 

The opening band of the night was Manchester four-piece Pale Waves, who delivered an impressive set of shimmering, sunny indie pop. Pale Waves performed with the skill of a more accomplished band and all eyes were on frontwoman Heather Baron-Gracie who commanded the stage with a quiet confidence. I was already a fan of their track There’s A Honey and on the strength of the other songs they played this is a band with huge potential, and reminded me of when I discovered their Dirty Hit label mates Wolf Alice years ago. I chatted to Heather after their set and she promised there would be new music soon, and I can’t wait to hear what else they have in store.

Up next were hotly-tipped London grunge revivalists King Nun, who have received acclaim for their tracks Tulip and Hung Around and they delivered a rowdy and energetic set. I wasn’t familiar with King Nun’s music before the gig, and admittedly the live versions of the songs didn’t make much of an impression on me but from the size of the crowd that turned up for their slot their music is clearly striking a chord with people.

Soon the lights dimmed for Superfood’s exciting comeback, and the band took to the stage to cheers and chants of the chorus from their self-titled song. With Dom Ganderton and Ryan Malcolm the only returning members from the previous line up I was curious to see how this would affect the live dynamic of the group, but the new look band served up a set that was arguably even more polished and confident than before. Superfood launched their set with their latest single, the excellent Double Dutch, before treating us to a glorious 45 minutes of old favourites from both Mam and album Don’t Say That and new songs to whet our appetites for the next LP. It sounds as if the new music will move away from the Britpop sound of the older songs, but it still has the unmistakeable Superfood stamp of fun.

It was apparent throughout that Dom and Ryan are both over the moon to be back playing live again, and this was certainly the feeling of the crowd too. If the new music and this blinder of a gig was anything to go by, the two years it took Superfood to find their feet again has totally paid off.

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