The Summer Set at The Rescue Rooms, Nottingham, 18 May 2016

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Following the release of their fourth album, ‘Stories For Monday’, the American pop rock band, The Summer Set were at The Rescue Rooms on Wednesday as part of their UK tour. Guest writer Jane Sweeney writes about the show.

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The Summer Set, from Scottsdale, Arizona, formed  in 2007 and quickly became successful through the independent music scene with their brand of infectious feel-good pop rock and belting catchy choruses.

The small venue at The Rescue Rooms created an intimate atmosphere despite the half-capacity crowd of mainly young girls. The first support act, SYKES, a London three piece electro-pop band, soon got the crowd hyped up, and the second support, Glasgow rap-rock band The LaFontaines,  continued to pump up the crowd with a confident, high energy performance, well received by the crowd. As soon as the Summer Set took the stage they were met with screams and cheers from their adoring fans.

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The band almost split up last year and their latest album, ‘Stories For Monday’, produced by band members, guitarists and brothers, John and Stephen Gomez, has a different feel to previous albums.

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Lead singer Brian Dales has spoken this year about how the band no longer feels pressure to write a hit song or worry about what people think of them. This freedom has resulted in a nostalgic and honest album which talks of the band rediscovering themselves. 

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The Summer Set opened up with the poignant but catchy, ‘Figure Me Out’, which asks where do I fit in this world, and how easy it is to let your famous status overshadow the people who mean the most to you. The upbeat  atmosphere continued as they  played old fan favourites from their previous three albums such as, ‘Chelsea’ , ‘Boomerang’, ‘Young’, and, ‘Maybe Tonight’, as well as recently released songs, ‘Jean Jacket’ and, ‘Missing You’.

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Brian Dales gave a strong vocal performance throughout with a lovely falsetto which conveyed genuine emotion. There was also a strong connection with the crowd, with Brian entertaining with dance moves and banter with other band members. He joked that they had picked the wrong night to come to Nottingham as Busted were playing across town at the Motorpoint Arena and thanked the small crowd for seeing them instead!  Before performing ‘Legendary’, Brian explained that the song was written when the band shared a house together, and how the American sitcom, ‘How I Met Your Mother’, inspired the lyrical content of the song. He also talked candidly about the band’s tough year  but how they are now playing with a renewed passion for their music.

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The almost two hour set ended with, ‘Lightning In A Bottle’, which got the crowd pumped for one last time and fans continued to scream out the lyrics until the very end. It was an amazing confident electric performance which left the crowd feeling optimistic. The Summer Set vowed they would be back to the UK later in the year…I will be there!

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