New Orleans' biggest rap export puts his contemporaries in the shade on inspired new mixtape
Converse Gigs @ The 100 Club, London, March 4
Thanks to the 100 Club's novel approach to the line of sight, Mayhew is all that half of the venue can see for the majority of the show. The massive pillar in the middle of the room hides the rest of the band, which lends an unusual air to proceedings. As Chilli and Sam buzz in front of wildly oscillating drummer Will Doyle, Mayhew dozes his way through 'Step Up For The Cool Cats', draws up a mental shopping list through 'Tom The Drum' and drifts away as his bandmates tear through 'Best Of Friends'. Then the set draws to a close, and he leaps up and dances madly to '14'.
It's testament to Palma Violets that they can turn their disinterested keyboard player into a believer. The band are putting the good times back into music, one rabble-rousing anthem at a time. Nobody here has to pretend they really enjoy listening to 10 minutes of feedback or claim they've "always been really into hip-hop", it's just a big old party.
The gig ends in chaos as fans flock to the stage and dance to 'Brand New Song', others choosing to meditate under Pete Mayhew's keyboard. The track sums up Palma Violets perfectly: big and dumb but sure as hell not stupid. As the stage descends into chaos, nobody could claim this is anything but massive fun.
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