Having only recently discovered Coasts after being approached to conduct this review, after a single listen to their entire discography I thought that they were just going to fall victim to the long line of generic indie-pop groups. Watching them live showed me that there is so much more to them and their music. In the intimate venue that is the Boileroom in Guildford, I feel that Coasts really did their product justice, more so than listening to it through any set of headphones.
First though, the support act. After sorting out some confusion at the door and finding a viewpoint with ample opportunities to lean, I was treated to M I S F I R E S – a small band that hails (rather unfortunately) from Swindon. The warm-up they conducted certainly got many heads bobbing in the room whilst comfortably orchestrating audience interaction. I wouldn’t be surprised if M I S F I R E S become quite a prominent indie act over the next few years.
One impromptu Jeremy Corbyn chant later, Coasts graced us with their presence.
The crowd of dedicated fans that had been waiting so patiently finally erupted with enormous energy when welcoming the band members onto the stage. This spark helped sustain the atmosphere throughout the technical troubles that the band endured throughout the first quarter of the set. Coasts dealt with the interruptions well by conversing with the audience, ultimately ensuring that the overall vibe of the night escaped any serious damage.
Once Coasts found their flow, it seemed that the band had come to Guildford as a one-off concert rather than the 36th show in the huge tour they had just undertaken in the UK. The amount of vitality they had was astonishing with Chris Caines, the voice of the group, being especially animated. Jumping onto the stage barrier and doing selfies with the audience all whilst putting everything he had in the songs. The crowd reciprocated this vigour tenfold by dancing as hard as they could and moshing during every song.
With everyone there being such big fans the crowd worked themselves the entire night without needing direction, singing along to every song which made me feel bad for not knowing any of the words. Even the older fans probably had to have a day’s rest after this concert.
Then the concert was over but not before Chris crowd surfed over the intimate audience and the lead guitarist Liam Wilford let the audience help him play some notes during the end song – pretty brave moves by both if I might say so. It is very apparent that this band is much loved by their devoted listeners and the band return that affection as much as possible when they perform. They clearly enjoy the music they have crafted and appreciate the audience that has enabled their success. That mutual love made this concert quite a special one for me, having left the Boileroom wanting to experience it once more.
Long may Coasts continue to put on shows of this quality!