Spring Offensive.


Before I get to the heart of this piece I’ll pick over very juicy bones of the show and dispense, with respect, with the formalities. This is to cover thus. It was Salvation Bill, Olympians and Spring offensive playing in The Shacklewell Arms. I missed Salvation Bill, but know that they are superb. I did get there in time for Olympians. As usual they were excellent. Their relatable math-rock (Really!) was performed to numerical perfection and I give them a big high-five.

If you read music related articles then you will be wearily familiar with words and phrases like; ‘promising’, ‘One to watch/keep and eye on’, ‘You’ll be seeing more of these guys’, ‘Hidden gem’ and ‘Undiscovered diamond’. While in sentiment all of these motions of support are sincere and meant entirely earnestly, but become throwaway when heard in the eighteenth consecutive article. The trouble is that what I am going to try to do here is to offer praise that comes from seemingly the same place, but try to make it actually believable – because I really believe it. Really really.

Put very simply, what Spring Offensive have done over the past couple of years is relentlessly release brilliant song after brilliant song. I’ll begin with the latest – Speak. Click on the below before reading further.

They are, to dispense with too much quibbling, and to set the scene, an indie band. Their guitars are, for the most part, pretty clean. The vocals appropriately and masterfully harmonised and the rhythms moody, sometimes complex, but always purposeful. Lyrically they are relatable and honest – a tragic rarity.

The performance at the Shacklewell was characteristically brilliant. Where finely and complexly produced songs can often sound disappointing when translated to the stage, they have managed to make all of the nuances of their songs (throbbing drones, funky drum & bass combinations and clever guitar picks) sound unforced and natural – effortless.

We heard a number of new tracks from the upcoming album and, true to form, they sounded great. Most encouragingly they felt progressive, with no laurel resting or repetition. Worry Fill My Heart was performed with added strings, which caught a few by surprise, but really worked. Speak came out heavily with screwed faces and bared teeth (nothing better than bared teeth) and encore entrusted Not Drowning but Waving put a seal on the set and ended with an apocalyptic crescendo.

Here is 'The River'

As a writer of critical assessment, I think that you are putting your judgment and reputation for good taste on the line every time you endorse or express admiration for something. While the consequences of perceived poor judgment may not be immediate or dramatic, I like to think that a certain level of self-respect and integrity should govern recommendations that are made publically. With this born strongly in mind I would like to hold Spring Offensive high above my head as a hot-tip, as my band of 2014 (and 13) and as my ‘you’ll be seeing a lot more of these guys’ band.

With that I will leave you with Spring Offensives first feather rustler, Worry Fill My Heart.