Friday, 4 March 2011

Glasvegas LIVE@Heavan

Heaven – Embankment

From the last minute rushing around to secure my press pass for this evening’s echoey entertainment (courtesy of Glasvegas) to the slightly worrying “propositioning” I was getting from a hulking American gentleman in the next to venue public house ; I hoped the approaching gig would be something special to help paper over the cracks of a strange evening indeed.

At this time I only have in my collection the debut album from the Scottish foursome and although some of these tracks made it into tonight’s set list it was really about pushing the new material and presenting the new mark 0.2 version of the group. Gone are the leather jackets and guitars from front man James Allan who now is trying to reinvent himself as the lead vocalist/frontman only rather than a guitarist who sings. He manages to do this with some success although the new make over complete with white vest and fairy light entwined microphone stand is a little misguided. But this is a review of the gig rather than a Gok Wan clothing special so onto the music we go.

The group came on stage to Beethoven’s ‘Moonlight Sonata’ (a piece that itself was used on their own song ‘Stabbed’) which is a great idea as it grabs everyone’s attention immediately and sets the atmosphere (complete with lighting effects) for the group’s arrival. Kicking straight into one of the new track's ‘The World Is Yours’ I notice that the new material is more dance like in its rhythms and influenced by more electronic sources rather than the meat and potatoes Clash, Velvets and Jesus & Mary Chain of the debut although some tracks lift the ambiance to such heights that it would push even Brian Eno to beg for some cowbell. A highlight of the set for me and indeed for the show completely was the cover of The Ronettes classic ‘Be My Baby’ (performed in the slower John Lennon arrangement rather than the roaring wall of sound original.) This was a smart move and the join that separated the set between new and old songs. Tonight’s set was a mixed bag of old favourites and three new ones off the as yet un-released second album. The new songs included the aforementioned intro ‘The World Is Yours’, ‘Shine Like Stars’ and ‘Euphoria,Take My Hand’. After the standard mini break before the encore of the crowd favourite ‘Daddy’s Gone’ in which the crowd took the lead vocals mid way through acapella before cueing the band back in for the ending.

The crowd tonight were there for a good time and got one in return, each singing every word at the top of their lungs and actually bringing to my attention that maybe Glasvegas have a very big and loyal following considering you very rarely hear their material being played at club nights and making any playlists. It looks like a re-appraisal is required here and I am with open ears awaiting the arrival of the new album ‘Euphoric///Heartbreak\\\’ upon its release on the 4th April.

Set List:

Introduction; Moonlight Sonata

1) The World Is Yours
2) It’s My Own Cheating Heart That Makes Me Cry
3) Shine Like Stars
4) Polmont On My Mind
5) Be My Baby
6) Euphoria, Take My Hand
7) Geraldine
8) Go Square Go
9) Ice Cream Van
10) Flowers & Football Tops
11) S.A.D Light
12) Daddy’s Gone

'originally printed on Music On In Inside'

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