Tuesday 25 September 2007

Patrick Watson King Tuts Glasgow

Patrick Watson @ King Tuts 19th Sept 2007
Bright Shiny Lights
Indie 4 piece from Montreal played King Tuts - were relaxed and having fun.
Richard Mailey, a fresh-faced young Irish man opened the gig, he has the power in his voice of a young Bruce Springsteen.

The Patrick Watson band offer lots of flowing space and fun theatrical percussion with their music. Patrick, songwriter and piano player and lead vocals puts everything in without doing too much, with the rest of the band bouncing off him. They used anything at hand – a balloon, a jacket over the guitar, effects pedals, more...
To start the set the drummer shook a soft percussion instrument in the space in front of his drum kit. This was not only about the songs or Patrick’s expressive voice, but about the energy of all four.

For the last number Patrick and guitarist took up position in the centre of the audience, and with the guitarist revolving on a small stool they conducted the audience with a ‘Man under the Sea’. For the encore Patrick sang with only piano the quite wonderful ‘the Great Escape'. Fun and engrossing. 

I enjoyed the way this band mixed things up with light fun rhythms, echoing each other…. No rules, no genre - with playful percussion, varied soundscapes and expressive vocals.
Coming out of Montreal’s fervent music scene, the band has a new album out ‘Close to Paradise’ and you sense they come out of a rich heritage of blues, jazz and more and shake it up to make it their own.(Also out of Montreal - Wolf Parade and Arcade Fire. Montreal has a renowned Jazz and Blue festival in July. )

Monday 6 August 2007

T in the Park Scotland 2006

T in the Park 2006
Apart from the rain, T was awesome fun!  The Chillis were sizzling hot! the Zutons  from Liverpool were exciting; the Kooks look good but were a bit derivative; Guillemots were highly colourful and command the stage; Franz Ferdinand partied like the Beatles; Maximo Park rocked.
Festivals are a wall of sound and a celebration of music, where everything goes and the more outlandish or fancy the better. The best thing is that everyone is there to party and have fun - yes there is drinking, the litter, there is outside toilets (this is something I come back to), but mostly there is good nature friendliness and everyone is happy that they can be there to share with the best in music 2006.
The Kooks. They look cool with floppy hair but lack individuality with their sound. One song is like Bob Marley, the next like Sting, the next like the Kinks.
Maximo Park, They swing and rocked with some strong melodic songs and a memorable performance.
Hot new band from Glasgow the Frettelis were one of the best bands there/ They played the Future Tent and will surely be playing one of the main stages next year.
The top new bands for me were the Guillemots, Maximo Park and the Zutons.  It meant a lot to see the Chillis live as Flea is my son’s hero! He saw them at Murrayfield a few years back and since then has became an amazing bass player through listening to the Chillis over and over and over!
The Chillis headlined and were in a league of their own. Flea’s bass shook the ground with steady rhythms as John Fruciante soared his guitar.  Keidis lept into action around the stage and slid to the mic. His voice while unique, was also the most flexible instrument as it lept around the bass lines in a tight and exacting way. The crowd also leapt and sung, transported to another dimension for this period of time.
One young guy in a wheelchair had managed to get pushed to close to the front. Unfortunately a girl on her mobile ignored him, so he tried to push up on his arms to get a glimpse of his heroes on the stage. Everyone is so excited to see the band perform.
They sang their hits, and some longer set pieces where they get to explore their music more. Flea and Fruciante move close to each other on stage to play tight together.  This band is very much a unit. Their last song, By The Way, really got the crowd pumping, with a hot energy and euphoria. It is easy to see why this band named themselves – the Red Hot Chillis!

Radiohead played Meadowbank stadium August 22nd 2006

Radiohead played Meadowbank stadium August 22nd 2006
Wild, unpredictable as the wind in the trees... their music takes you on a journey across time and space with flurries, storms, hurricanes and gentle breezes. Tom York’s voice blends incoherently with the band and Johnny Greenwood lays into it all, on electric guitar. Some of their lyrics capture essences of the human spirit such as- ‘ Just cos you feel it, doesn't mean it’s there.’
Karma Police; ‘For a minute there I lost myself.’
And Just; ‘You do it to yourself’

They played their first hit Creep as their final song ; ‘I wish I was special, I’m a creep I’m a weirdo.’ Tom at one point says, Radio One used to take risks and now they play Jay-lo.’
Another moment to take away from the gig, Yorke looks straight into the monitors to sing. Several of their songs are atmospheric and catch you in the gut with beats that resonate and vibrate through you. One of their new songs creates that Last Post end of the day broodiness. Possibly my best ever gig and an unforgettable experience.

Dick Gaughan at the Place Milngavie September 16th 2006

"a world weary traveller of stories and music"
Dick Gaughan, traditional folk singer and guitarist, songwriter, composer and record producer, played the Place, Milngavie to a packed and enthralled audience. His traditional folk hits hard, with powerful guitar and voice. He sings often of Scottish heroes and stories, of our lost past and voices long forgotten. In between songs, while re-tuning, he tells of his travelling. He ponders in one song, have we forgotten the protest voices of the 60s, We Shall Overcome, and What Are We Fighting For. Another about connecting to his grandfather while visiting the first World War graveyards in Germany, who died while half his age from mustard gas poisoning, and connects this to the faces he remembers well as a child, the sad faces of old men and the old miners.