It was another busy night at The Bodega. Supported by two local bands of note, Cadets and Albion, it was Exit Calm from various parts of South Yorkshire that were headlining. The first two acts gorged themselves on the growing raptures of the crowd quite early on. When we entered the room half an hour after doors opened, it was already nearly full. As Exit Calm took to the stage, it was at the limit.

Exit Calm are Scott Pemberton (drums), Simon Lindley (bass), Rob Marshall (guitars) and Nicky Smith (vocals). It was evident right from the start from the healthy turnout that they had a strong following in Nottingham. They were formed in the South Yorkshire town of Barnsley back in late 2006, and spent the next eighteen months writing and honing their sound until in 2008 they released their first single, ‘Higher Learning’. Their highly charged live shows attracted some decent attention, culminating in them being invited as main support on The Music’s ‘Strength In Numbers’ UK tour in June 2008.

They have gained quite a name for themselves over the past few years. No wonder really as Smith is the real connoisseur of the live act. He makes it look ridiculously easy, drawing the crowd in and winding them up into a frenzy from the first few bars of each show. They played anthem after anthem, and had the band jumping and hollering for more after every song. If you are attracted by the idea of the early sounds of My Bloody Valentine with a Spiritualized tinge and a high intensity and euphoric psychedelic sound accompanied by a trademark heavy bass line, you need to see Exit Calm. It is all very 'no fuss', and straight to the point. They are what they are and they are really quite good at it.

Smith's gravelly vocals work in tune with the sound that comes from behind him. New tracks from their recent second album ‘The Future Isn’t What It Used to Be’ such as ‘Something That’s Worth Celebrating’, ‘Promise’ and ‘Open Your Sky’ combined seamlessly with songs from their 2010 self-titled first album such as ‘We’re On Our Own’. Smith seemed to be making as good a use of the tinny as the crowd were absolutely bladdered but loving every minute of it. The Bodega was rammed too. It was full of hot sweaty Exit Calmists hugging and chanting and responding to every note that came from the stage.

This was a night to remember and a chance to see a band that should be moving up to the next level very soon. I'd just like to thank the chap in front of me for being a complete gentleman. Whilst everyone else was frolicking around dementedly, he didn’t move a muscle and never opened his lips from one song to the next. I thought he was dead, so I asked him if he could just move over a foot so I could just get that shot and he simply said, “'No” and carried on standing there. Can't fault him really! Marvellous!


















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