Arcade Hearts review: ‘The 10-song set comes to a close all too soon’

Arcade Hearts
Arcade Hearts

A year ago Arcade Hearts supported Jerry Williams at The Wedge.

This time out, Jerry returns the favour as support the Gosport four-piece.

And it’s not down to any reversal of fortune – both acts have had an excellent 2018. But it does speak volumes about the camaraderie that exists between them.

Jerry kicks off with Mother - the track which put her into literally millions of ears thanks to Spotify’s playlists - and the fact that it’s a damn fine indie-pop tune.

The set rattles along at a fair lick – she omits some of the more downbeat tracks from her oeuvre – which serves tonight well. Her band are as tight as ever, and when Jerry puts down her guitar for What Do You Want For Breakfast? it proves that she doesn’t use the instrument to hide behind.

There’s a continuing growth in maturity to Jerry’s performances and songwriting that is a joy to to watch.

Given that Arcade Hearts trade in ’80s-influenced indie-dance, the huge neon sign of their logo at the back of the stage is appropriate.

From the off, the audience is in their hands. The gig is to launch their debut EP, and they start with Crawling from it – a track which is anything but with its propulsive chorus.

Frontman Daniel Surridge-Smith, is an assured performer, but looks genuinely bowled over by the enthusiastic response from the near-full house.

The numerous festival sets they’ve played over the summer have paid dividends – the band – completed by Frankie Drain on guitar, Brandon Squibb on drums and Harrison Adams Bass –  are a cohesive unit, and look to be revelling in the moment at what is their biggest headline show to date.

Their summery vibes and infectious enthusiasm put a big smile on this reviewer’s face.

The 10-song set comes to a close all too soon with Humble - the lead track from the EP, and probably their strongest song so far. During its climax Dan goes for a bit of a crowd-surf - carried right across the packed floor of the venue on the shoulders of his fans.

There’s something rather endearing about the fact that the band haven’t prepared for the well-earned encore. They have literally put everything they have out there.

So they play Crawling again on the grounds that it’s the track we haven’t heard in the longest time.

Next time they shouldn’t be surprised if the crowd wants more.