REVIEW | Almeida – Broadcast (27/10/16)

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Over the past decade, Almeida have established themselves as one of the most exciting and beserk acts in the British underground scene, and at last they brought their trademark madness to the city of Glasgow for the first time ever, live at Broadcast courtesy of Bubble Tea Records.


We arrived just in time for relative newcomers Over The Line, who provided an energetic set with a batch of fast-paced catchy tracks, with our favourites being Glass Houses and their latest single NovemberThere were some twitches of nervousness here and there but nonetheless the crowd visibly liked them and we think they continue to show a lot of promise.

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Next up was Smile In Regret, who we had not seen in 2 long years, and they certainly booted up the intensity with a charged performance where thumping bass chords and hard-hitting drums stood out as the definitive aspects, plus their cover of Beautiful Girls was on point. Short and simple, but really enjoyable.

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Airdrie quintet Remind Me Of Home followed suit and kept the energy going with more of those melodic tunes featuring solid vocal work and sweet riffs, while throwing in a couple of nice slower pieces into the mix. Some miscommunication hindered them a little and they were really up against several technical issues – even the ceiling cushioning came loose at one point – but pretty fun for what it was.

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And now for the main support, PMX, a band there was a lot of hype behind so we were eager to see what they had to offer. That aforementioned hype was most warranted because they were off the charts. An incredibly ballistic performance with every cracking tune better than the last, all driven by manic guitars and the most frantic of drum beats. The whole venue was hooked and everybody loved it; awesome, show-stealing stuff.

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But that is not to say that Almeida were a letdown. Quite the contrary, in fact; they were bloody mental. They churned out a bunch of super heavy bangers that had a bit of everything – zealous harmonies, a tight pairing of dynamic riffage and bass, thunderous drumming and blistering breakneck melodies topped off with immense choruses.

Once again, the whole audience latched onto ever note thrown at them. All in all, it was just a marvelous experience, easily being one of the best live shows we have witnessed this year. The buzz afterwards took hours to properly wear off, and for good reason.

 

REVIEW | Teyr – The Hug & Pint (25/10/16)

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And now for something a little different, for it was time to take a break from the plethora of rock and metal shows and simmer down with some good old-fashioned folk music brought to us by TEYR, who were stopping by The Hug & Pint in Glasgow for yet another night of their ongoing nationwide tour in support of their new album – Far From The Tree.


Starting off the night was local artist Chrissy Barnacle, fresh off her nomination for 2016 SAMA Best Acoustic Act. We had seen her a couple of months prior alongside Hardcore Boys, but now we were finally getting to see her solo, and it has to be said that she was stunning.

Excellent finger picking and poignant vocals with a lot of punctuation behind them, in addition to gripping lyrics and boasting a very charming personality. There was such a magnetic quality about her that had ourselves and the rest of the constantly growing audience hooked from start to finish. It proved to be no surprise whatsoever as to why she is getting nominated for prestigious awards.

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Dante from Edinburgh were next, who we were not familiar with at all, but as always we were eager to discover something new, and they thoroughly impressed with a variety of grand alternative folk tracks such as Ghost, The Boy And The Telephone and Son; all of which featured a mix of fervent ensemble harmonies, great guitar work and exciting rhythms.

Dante earned themselves a new fan, and in return they offered us a valuable lesson – don’t go to Specsavers in Perth. Contrary to popular belief, they do not sell anti-glare glasses.

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And last but not least was TEYR themselves, and the London trio proved to be magnificent as they retained the undivided attention of the crowd for over an hour. There was a real sense of awe in the room, particularly during the quieter numbers where an eerie ambience lingered in the air.

Dominic, Tommie and James all displayed superb skill on their respective instruments through all the tunes, with stand outs inclduing False LadyNothing Grows, the fiercely catchy Shady Grove and the goosebump-inducing Banks Of Newfoundland.

Despite a pile on of persisting technical issues, including an emergency restringing thanks to one courteous individual, it did not matter in the slightest as everyone clearly enjoyed the set, including ourselves. For certain, one of the best folk acts we have ever had the pleasure of seeing.

Let’s hope their first trip to Glasgow will not be the last.

 

REVIEW | Outright Resistance – Ivory Blacks (24/10/16)

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The start of a new working week usually brings a mild depressive feeling as you get back on the grind, so what better way to take that all away than with a loaded night of metal on a Monday night, courtesy of Outright Resistance from Stevenage who were hitting up Ivory Blacks for the final Scottish show of their ongoing Me Vs UK tour.


Their tour buddies Buried & Forgotten were up first to get the ball rolling. Following a brooding intro, they exploded into a set highlighted by raw dual vocals, high impact drumming, mammoth drops and synths galore. They even managed to ignite a little mosh and some fancy dancing from the folk at the front, so overall it was a rip-roaring way to start the proceedings.

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We came back in time to see local supports Dominicide, where frontman Sean donned a cutout mask of the queen; quite frankly, a terrifying sight.

That titbit aside, they killed it on stage. The vocal work packed a punch and was further complimented by instrumentals with a no holds barred intensity that got the crowd jumping at one point. Sean even took it upon himself to head down and get another miniature pit on the go during the last number. A huge first impression was well made here with all that wonderful heavy goodness on deck.

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And now for the main attraction – Outright Resistance. Not deterred by the standard Monday night crowd, they held nothing back in delivering an exciting performance elevated by a massive presence and strong chemistry. Paige led the charge in convincing fashion, cranking out guttural screams and throwing herself around without a care in the world, and the guitarists even got up close and personal as we stood and watched from the barrier.

Capping off with a cracking cover of Limp Bizkit’s Break Stuff – chock full of party poppers and all – it was a fun show fuelled by a passion to entertain those in attendance, no matter how few, and we would be more than happy to see them back up here in Glasgow again.

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And to finish things off we had Warhead from Bathgate, a band we had been wanting to see live for a long time now, and boy were they sweet.

The trio fired out a variety of rocking tracks, with focal points including CrumbleSick Of It All and Don’t Be Such A B*tch, all of which had a big sound generated through fierce riffs and swift tempo rhythms, and they were even nice enough to give us a cover of Sabotage by the Beastie Boys, where they were joined by the man, the myth, the legend himself – Phil. A great way to wrap up the night nicely.

 

REVIEW | FOES – The Old Hairdressers (20/10/16)

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On the heels of the release of their debut full-length album – The Summit Lies Skyward – one of Liverpool’s most prominent rock acts FOES took off on a countrywide tour to promote the new record, which included a stop at The Old Hairdressers in Glasgow courtesy of HD Music.

Although we were running a little late, we arrived just in time to catch Monkey Puzzle, a band we had been meaning to see for so long now, but at last we got the opportunity and they made quite an impression.

This was no ordinary opening set, the four lads truly meant business as they generated a raw, immense energy through a tight rhythm section, gritty guitars and a charismatic performance from vocalist Conor Moore.

Throughout, they had the crowd bopping their heads, even more so during the catchy choruses, and the intensity only buffed up with every passing tune. No doubt about it, this was going to be a tough act to follow.

As Verse Metrics got going, it was pretty clear they had that obstacle in front of them, but to their credit the guys did impress all in the now-packed room with some pristine riffs, strong bass work and a smooth ambient sensation, wrapping up on a high note with This Is Your Captain Speaking.

Plus they did give us the Red Dwarf-inspired song about Dr Lanstrom, and we think they at the very least deserve a plate of smoked kippers for that one.

From the cold reaches of Copenhagen, Siamese were up next and ready to make their debut in Glasgow, and what a debut it was. A tenacious energy radiating off the “stage”,  with such a clear passion emitting from the quartet all the way; in particular, frontman Mirza Radonjica who shared some charming banter with the audience.

Between an array of high-octane numbers, we even got treated to a rocking cover of Hotline Bling. One aspect we especially loved was Christian’s custom made violin that looked like a skull; so bizarre, yet so amazing. It was all so good that they managed to attract that one seemingly intoxicated middle-aged gentleman we see at many local shows who was air-guitaring to his heart’s content.

Safe to say, Siamese’s first outing in the city was an overwhelming success, and an awesome live experience for us.

And then there was FOES. Being the fourth time we were seeing the band in action, we expected something great but they defied the odds that night and delivered a monumental performance like no other. From a technical standpoint, it was awe-inspiring, and that was down to a combination of dynamic riffs, deep bass chords and drumming what can only be described as superhuman.

With that mix, they dished out track upon track from The Summit Lies Skyward, with just some of the highlights including the kinetic Sworn Host, the spellbinding No Sleepers Verse and the absolutely breathtaking Orchestrator. With all that, they boasted a sheer presence and elicited an electricity which had the crowd hooked from start to finish.

If you were there and this did not convince you that FOES are among the elite in the British underground scene at the moment and deserve to reach grand new heights, then nothing will.

REVIEW | Thirty Three Connection (Self-Titled EP)

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2016 has proven to be a year of revitalisation for the Edinburgh music scene in many ways, with one such aspect being a multitude of bands representing the capital consistently putting out some of the best material in all of Scotland over the course of the last 10 months.

With that in mind, we turn our attention to alternative duo Thirty Three Connection, who we were first introduced to last year when we were given the opportunity to showcase their double-side singles – Heart In The Clouds and Time & Time Again. We found them both to be very enjoyable, and thus Andrew and Stephen had made a solid impression.

Naturally, when it came around to the release of their new self-titled EP, we had high hopes, and it gives us immense joy that those said hopes were exceeded beyond expectations.

The lead single In The Rain commences on a soft note, with riffs and piano keys soon making their presence felt, and from there it only elevates. The firm combination of strong dual vocals dripping with passion and the most infectious of melodies make for a stellar opening track.

As you take time to catch your breath, the pair ease into Venue, a stunning number that tells a gripping, somber story conveyed through utterly superb writing that really tugs at the heartstrings.

Up next is Now You’re On Your Own, which is highlighted by zealous drumming and radiant electronics, with verses that build up perfectly to an astounding chorus, and finally, the closing tune Reflection On The Water starts slow, but suddenly the tempo snaps up to provide a bombastic finale with the addition of memorable lyrics and a catchy rhythm for good measure.

It is not often you come across a record that blows you away, but that is exactly the case here. Thirty Three Connection have delivered an outstanding EP that is loaded to the brim with many remarkable qualities and a replayability factor where each listen only gives us more appreciation for the product that has been presented.