Review — Peach Pit Was the Punk Show You Didn’t Know You Needed

Peach Pit, the Canadian indie rock band, played their second show ever in Denver this week as a stop on their “Right Down The Street” Tour. Sadly, openers, Sunflower Bean, got stuck traveling due to snow storms. Peach Pit alerted fans through Instagram that they would be starting early due to this. And fans saw — Summit Music Hall was packed to full capacity before the band hit the stage. 

The show opened right on time with a cover of “Raining Blood” by Slayer. Stark heavy metal guitar riffs, pounding drums and red flashing lights shook the music hall. Neil Smith, the lead vocalist and guitarist, encouraged the crowd to open a mosh pit and danced violently across the stage with his guitar. The crowd rose to the occasion, in a chaotic mix. After the intense intro, Smith explained that he had a “bangover” which he explained to be when you headbang too much and your neck is stiff for the next few days.

Lead vocalist, Neil Smith. Photo courtesy of Peach Pit on Facebook.

Smith enthusiastically introduced the band: Chris Vanderkooy (guitar), Peter Wilson (bass) and Mikey Pascuzzi (drums). Each introduction received cheers from the audience. Smith also made a point of highlighting the band’s roadies, lights and sound crew during the performance. Vanderkooy took to the mic to highlight his family in attendance and memorialize his Grammy, who the band actually brought on stage during their first performance in Denver. The crowd oozed with enthusiasm and joy. 

The performers moved to lighter tunes including, “Give Up Baby Go,” “Being So Normal,” “Alrighty Aphrodite” and “From 2 to 3.” Each song was altered to showcase the live guitar solos and duets. The performers roamed the stage, duetting face to face and building off of each other’s energy. Smith got personal with the audience and explained that “Vickie” was a song he wrote for his girlfriend after she complained about having no songs written about her. Fans danced with enthusiasm and colored lights highlighted each band member and moved in rhythm. 

“Thanks for sticking with us through the sad stuff,” Smith chuckled. Vanderkooy pulled out a stark white, multi-neck guitar, and the band made a quick pivot to the upbeat version of “Drop the Guillotine.” Every solo and song was followed with fanatic screams from the crowd. It was clear that the band members fed off this energy and poured themselves into the music. Bathed in purple and yellow lights, “Your Teeth” and “Peach Pit” washed over the crowd in waves. A striking harmonica solo shook the crowd and the violin brought the dreamy background of songs to life. 

Photo courtesy of Peach Pit on Facebook.

Peach Pit pulls fans’ heartstrings with cutting emotional lyrics and guitar riffs that move the soul. Each member is unabashed and raw. A wild chemistry exists between the band members that is highlighted when they perform live. This leads to impassioned vocals and chaotic guitar duets at a whole new level.  

With thanks and smiles, the band attempted to end their set and fully exited the stage. However, Denver was not ready for the night to end. After a bombardment of chanting and little to no movement from the crowd, Peach Pit returned with a four-song encore. Fans swayed to “Sweet FA” and “Seventeen” as the musicians danced across the stage. Emotions overtook the crowd with “Shampoo Bottles,” a song that laments items a past girlfriend left behind after a breakup. The show closed with a slower tune, but a clear fan favorite, “Tommy’s Party” which portrays the way you might observe a friend ditching you for a girl. Smith thanked fans again for their love and support through the years as Peach Pit waved goodbye to Denver for the second time.

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