SPRINTS performing at Rough Trade Nottingham
Photo credit: Nigel King

SPRINTS play rowdy Nottingham in-store to celebrate new album, Letter To Self

It’s safe to say that SPRINTS have had a positive start to 2024. Releasing their debut album Letter to Self on the first Friday of the year was a genius move; while other artists were still defrosting from the Christmas and New Year period, SPRINTS were topping everyone’s New Music Friday playlists and putting themselves at the forefront of the first chart battle of the year. They have wasted no time taking the album on the road either, with a string of in-store shows across the UK to celebrate its release.

“You all seem to be enjoying the album, thank god!” they said to the crowd as they began the show in Nottingham, performing the two opening tracks of the album, ‘Ticking’ and ‘Heavy‘. They admitted that they still found it strange that people were buying and listening to their music, their humility shining through as they chatted between tunes.

Photo credit: Nigel King

Fuelled by Jägermeister and Guinness pints, SPRINTS were not participating in dry January – “Is anyone doing dry January? Absolutely not!” they laughed. They began to list some of the artists who they were battling in the top ten of the charts, with the names getting mixed responses from the crowd. I’m not sure what Lewis Capaldi has done to hurt Nottingham, but he didn’t seem to be a fan-favourite in the room.

They then launched into ‘Cathedral’, ‘Adore Adore Adore’ and ‘Shaking Their Hands’, before switching the pace of the set with the most emotional song on the album, ‘Shadow of a Doubt’. It was the highlight of the night, despite vocalist Karla Chubb saying she dreaded playing it live, something she has only done “one and a half times” previously. They performed half of it at their Brighton show the night before and once in full at Maida Vale, she explained, so it felt like a special moment.

‘Can’t Get Enough of Itand the band’s biggest hit so far, ‘Up and Comer’, followed, changing the tone from soft and vulnerable to loud and energetic in the space of a few minutes. “Right, let’s f*cking go Nottingham!” Chubb exclaimed, bringing the audience out of the trance that ‘Shadow of a Doubt’ had induced moments before.

It’s rare to have an encore at an in-store show, but after the main portion of the set closed with ‘Literary Mind’, the audience’s extended applause convinced the band to treat us to two more songs. They selected ones from deeper within their discography to close the show: ‘Little Fix’ and ‘Delia Smith’, which the audience seemed to know just as well as the tracks from Letter to Self.

With their album sold out in stores and their UK tour officially sold out on the day of the gig, SPRINTS have already made their mark as one of the hottest up and coming bands of the year, despite only being a few weeks in. And with 11 months of 2024 still to come, which will include another UK tour in April, it’s safe to say that their success is only going to keep coming. Definitely not bad at all for an up and comer…

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