An impressive nine dates into their current European tour, Seattle all-girl four-piece, Chastity Belt, were on top form as they took to the stage of Brighton’s Green Door Store on Wednesday night; although it hasn’t exactly all been plain sailing for the group. As drummer turned singer turned guitarist Gretchen Grimm explains during one interval, the fact that she broke her shoulder some weeks ago has meant that Eric Tormey (member of Brighton-based support band Gang) has joined them onstage throughout the tour to play her guitar parts – although this doesn’t stop them sounding as kick-ass and independent as ever.
With the room packed to the rafters with enthusiastic fans, Chastity Belt rattled through a series of tracks spanning all three albums, the calm, more mature simplicity of newer tracks such as ‘Something Else’ delicately complimenting older songs such as ‘Drone’ and ‘Time To Go Home’ (taken from their 2015 album of the same name). However, the set list predominantly consists of content from the band’s most recent studio album I Used to Spend So Much Time Alone, released in June via Hardly Art, and a record that details the highs and lows of modern life. Tracks such as ‘This Time of Night’ convey feelings of panicked confusion as the lyrics ask “how do I get out of here”, whilst more downbeat tunes such as ‘Used To Spend’ discuss boredom and insincerity.
As the band exit the stage after an hour of performing, the expected calls for encore begin. Requesting track suggestions as they (predictably) re-appear from off-stage, an excited fan behind me screams “Seattle Party” so loudly it sounds as if his lungs might burst. The opening notes alert the crowd that the request has been fulfilled – and they go mad. It’s clear that after three albums, Chastity Belt are still as exciting to live audiences as ever, all we can hope is that they’re no where near running out of material yet.