Photos by Hana Tobias
Last Saturday, Peach Pit played an energetic set to a sold out crowd at SOMA. The band—consisting of frontman Neil Smith, lead guitarist Christopher Vanderkooy, bassist Peter Wilson, and drummer Mikey Pascuzzi—is currently touring their latest album, From 2 to 3. They played a solid set of self-described “chewed bubblegum pop” to a lively crowd.
Opening for Peach Pit was rock group Sunflower Bean, led by Julia Cummings, with lead guitarist Nick Kivlen and drummer Olive Faber. The band played an intense set (including a song titled “Serial Killer”), and added in a new song, “Lucky Number”. They ended their set with “Beat the Odds,” which featured a passionate guitar solo.
Next, Peach Pit took the stage with a short Slayer cover leading into “Being So Normal,” the title track off of their 2017 album. Soon after the song started, Smith jumped off the stage and into the crowd, setting the tone for a lively night. Between songs, he jokingly had the crowd boo the “rich people” sitting on a raised balcony, and he imparted the number one rule of moshing: pick people up if they fall. After playing several lively songs, the band settled into more relaxed indie pop. Songs like “Vickie” and “Up Granville” brought out the daydreamy, almost wistful quality that is so integral to Peach Pit’s music.
Later on, the heavenly sound of “Private Presley” became a highlight of the set. The crowd even harmonized at some points as Smith sang about missing home. Toward the end of the song, a gorgeous violin melody transitioned into a guitar solo as the lights flashed frenetically, culminating in a gorgeous release of emotion.
Not letting the energy falter, Smith claimed they were playing too much “sad-boy” music and immediately jumped into “Drop the Guillotine”—a song off their debut EP, Sweet FA—to liven up the crowd. Later on, the band played another throwback from the same EP, “Peach Pit,” dedicating the song to “anyone who first found [their] music on Youtube way back in the day.” As the band members jumped around the stage joyfully, the lights behind them enhanced their energy; strips of lights behind them pulsed to the beat of the music as larger lights projected patterns on the ceiling (even earning a cheer from the crowd at one point).
At the end of the night, Peach Pit played an audience favorite, “Tommy’s Party,” as evidenced by the crowd screaming along to every lyric. The song was an entertaining cap to a dynamic night with superb production. Smith crowned San Diego the best night of tour; Peach Pit put on an excellent show well worthy of that title.
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