From playing their first gig as recently as July last year at the Art School in Glasgow, to just over a year later headlining back to back sell out shows in the ABC, the rise of CHVRCHES has been one of breakneck speed. Without lamenting on the progression too much, in the last year alone they have toured America, played both Jimmy Fallon and Jools Holland, had a song included in the Fifa 14 soundtrack and released their debut album to peak chart positions of 9 and 12 in the UK album chart and US billboard chart respectively. A beyond impressive start for any band.

Returning back to a hometown show after this the band begin with “We Sink”, the chorus hook of “I’ll be the thorn in your side” has the crowd singing along even with some expected first song reservation. Following this is “Lungs”, with some of the more heavy synths in the set. It is then impressively present during single “Gun'”that the band recreate as much live as possible even as a three piece all three contribute vocally as well using multiple instruments, with Iain Cook even contributing bass guitar on numerous songs.

After the next single of the set “Lies”, lead vocalist, Lauren Mayberry offers up her ‘teenage confessions’ portion of the evening announcing her break-up with a high school boyfriend was a result of him “fingering a girl in the toilets” of the very same venue the band are headlining this evening. Ironically, “Strong Hand” shortly after is a highlight with much more attack live than it has on the record, the pre-chorus to chorus transition providing a powerful kick.

This is contrasted by the slower “Tether” which is sandwiched between “Recover” and the Martin Doherty-led “Under-The-Tide”, the latter steps it up a further gear as another song with greater presence live than on the record. This is partly due to the vocal switch-up but also due to the constant undercurrent arpeggio driving it from start to finish. When they leave the stage for the first time, they themselves struggle to contain the mild ridiculousness of a band with only one full length release pretending they won’t play their biggest song, admitting upon their return it’s a slight “Beamer, but when else can you do it if not the second night of an ABC sellout?”

The real surprise of the evening, to those who don’t research set lists ahead of time at least, is the cover of Whitney Houston’s “It’s Not Right, But It’s OK” as a possible subliminal shout out to the now infamous high school ex-boyfriend. The final track of the evening is also of the break-up variety, “Mother We Share” finishes off the set appropriately and the band end with any potential “beamers” definitely not affecting the overall performance as the cheers from the crowd send the band off for hopefully a year just as successful, if not more so, than the last.

CHVRCHES’ “The Bones Of What You Believe” is available now.

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