After the success of their 2015 sophomore release, Chastity Belt continued the UK leg of their Time To Go Home tour as they arrived in Nottingham on Monday night to delight a packed-out Bodega crowd.
The Notts-based five-piece outfit Babe Punch forcefully kicked off proceedings with a blistering set of their pacy punk-rock tunes. The group boasts an eclectic range of influences, though their esteem for Courtney Love ties together their grungy, alt-rock aesthetic – most evident in a snarling performance of ‘Snake Tongue’.
Considering they’ve recently had a change of line-up, there’s clearly great chemistry here – it’s a tight performance overall, suitably scuffed around the edges, with striking group-vocal lines that demand attention. The Blondie-esque, towering vocals of frontwoman Molly Godber are sustained throughout, and the group together commands the venue with the resounding chorus line of lead track ‘Fixation’. This band is sure to continue making waves around the city throughout the year.
“The layers of stoner anthem ‘Joke’ build into dancy, soaring chorus lines before a momentous breakdown sees out the track”
Next up was Glaswegian duo Tuff Love, who are touring their brand of self-titled “apologetic pop music” around the UK with Chastity Belt. Along with drummer Iain, the group deliver their melodic, fuzz-pop songs with practiced finesse; their harmonised vocals a calming centre to the intricate, complementary bass lines and guitar riffs.
Having collected their previous DIY releases into their debut LP in January – entitled Resort – the band feature a couple of new tracks off an album that they’re working on. Standout moments from the set include the gently chugging riffs of ‘Slammer’ and the fuzzy, chord-driven track ‘Sweet Discontent’.
Beginning their set with the opening track from Time To Go Home, the distinctive atmosphere of Chastity Belt’s latest LP is captured fully as the incisive lyricism, thudding bass section and dreamy guitar melodies of ‘Drone’ float across the venue. Featuring tracks off their 2013 LP No Regrets and new, unreleased songs as well, a busy Bodega crowd is undoubtedly grateful that the group have made their transatlantic journey to be here.
“The incisive lyricism, thudding bass section and dreamy guitar melodies of ‘Drone’ float across the venue”
An ambiguous, genre-hopping aesthetic pervades their music. With the post-punk and riot grrrl impulse for observant, funny, important lyricism set to striking track structures, Chastity Belt also throw noise-pop and indie-rock textures into the mix – the dreamy, fuzzy outcome of which melts satisfyingly against the first (and possibly only) summery weekend of the year.
“The four-piece finish off the evening with swaggering title-track ‘Time To Go Home’”
Demonstrating their credentials as adept multi-instrumentalists, Julia Shapiro swaps mic and guitar duties with drummer Gretchen Grimm for ‘Lydia’ – each expertly fulfill these new roles. They swap back in time for the crescendo of the evening – the layers of stoner anthem ‘Joke’ build into dancy, soaring chorus lines before a momentous breakdown sees out the track. The four-piece finish off the evening with swaggering title-track ‘Time To Go Home’: a fitting end to an impressive set, as the group meanders off stage for a scheduled day of rest in the midst of a packed tour.
Image courtesy of Chastity Belt