Peach Pit; an Indie fixation that must be heard

Abbigayle Gabli and Sabrina Girardi

 1,500 people. Bright lights. Anticipating breaths. Roaring excitement. Vigorous beat. At the Intersection in Grand Rapids, MI Sept. 24 at 8 p.m., a crisp Saturday night, Peach Pit stole the breath from the audience’s lungs. The indie rock band began in 2010, and gained traction in 2014 with their first album “Being so Normal.” Band members Neil Smith (lead vocals and guitar), Chris Vanderkooy (lead guitarist), Peter Wilton (bass) and Mikey Pascuzzi (drums) have produced three albums together and have been attracting quite an audience, selling out almost every venue on their U.S tour. With Smith’s creation of soul-hitting lyrics intertwined with their timeless indie sound, this band is worth a listen. The most popular song “Alrighty Aphrodite” hits indie tracks from its release, stays in popularity and would be a good place to start for new listeners. Three hours before the concert began, more than 50 people were waiting in line to enter early to the concert in their excitement. The people waiting alongside each other were covered with tattoos and septum nose rings. Everyone dressed in an earthy tone brought together the vibey atmosphere that was the concert. Entering the Intersection, fans were greeted by a merchandise stand, and further beyond that to the right was a dark room with blue, red, orange and yellow lights flashing. Fans swarmed to the stage. Awaiting the band, the crowd was pleased to listen to the amazing vocals of Rob Grote (lead vocalist) from the Districts. This band was formed in 2009 by Grote, Braden Lawrence (bassist and pianist) and Pat Cassidy (guitarist). His voice filled the room and cast a spell amongst the crowd making everyone sway in pleasure. After the Districts set, Grote started listing off band members of Peach Pit one by one as they came out onto the stage. As the crowd became overwhelmed with excitement, Smith jumped out into the crowd’s arms and was taken away into a sea of fans. The crowd was unconscious of personal space as everyone wanted to be in the front by the stage. After a few songs, everyone seemed to settle and bounce to the music and be respectful. Peach Pit kept the audience engaged with bass solos and drum solos allowing the audience to view the performers’ instrumental talents. Smith and Vanderkooy even played their guitars back to back and completely emerged in the song’s beat. This band holds the fans’ addiction like a drug. Beyond the sad, almost humorous life stories Smith tells in the lyrics, listeners also are grasped by the guitarists. A prime example being “Vickie” which is about his friend. Vanderkooy is beyond a spectacular guitarist; as soon as he begins to play the audience is hooked. As Vanderkooy and Wilton’s playing begins to vibrate in his listeners’ chests, the metal and steel strings come off their uniquely colored guitars and chain to hearts and minds. Not only that, but Pascuzzi brings the backbone to every song. Without his faint drumming in the background, the music would feel incomplete and flat. Peach Pit has 14 more shows this year and will be concluding their tour at Terminal 5 New York, NY on Dec. 15. If you enjoy listening to The Backseat Lovers, Hippo Campus or Dayglow we definitely recommend you take a listen to Peach Pit. From standing with the giddy line of fans to the dark, vibey venue, to the opener, The Districts, all the way to Smith crowd surfing, this concert was an amazing experience to be had.