IDLEWILD
ABC1, Glasgow, April 30 * * * * *

When Idlewild singer Roddy Woomble wrote on the band’s Facebook page “after this year it’s an appropriate time to take a break, a ‘hiatus’” it wasn’t a big surprise when the N.M.E, no doubt eager to fill their online news quota, jumped at the chance to announce the band’s imminent demise.
Thankfully the five-piece have no intentions of calling it a day, and why would they after such a positive response to last year’s Post Electric Blues? Instead they will embark on its follow-up after a bit of a “rest”.
Roared on by the sold-out crowd, tonight is was business as usual as the band powered through a rapid-fire and at times incendiary set, throwing themselves into songs like Readers and Writers, Idea Track and A Modern Way Of Letting Go with real conviction and passion.
However for intensity and sheer potency Post Electric, and more specifically its bombastic instrumental climax, was unrivalled, the crowd joining Woomble in looking on with pride at one of Scotland’s most important bands.

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Grizzly Bear @ ABC1 02-11-09

November 13, 2009

GRIZZLY BEAR
ABC1, Glasgow, November 2 * * * * *

From cult outsiders to Billboard top 10 artists, Grizzly Bear has found its audience share increase significantly since the critical and mainstream success of third album Veckatimest earlier this year – another sold-out crowd, this time in the cavernous surrounds of the ABC1 further proof of that.
Despite niggling technical problems this was a stunning performance from the four-piece and one which, thanks to the all-consuming nature of songs like Fine For Now, Deep Blue Sea and While You Wait For The Others, will certainly live long in the memory.
More often than not lighting at gigs is an afterthought but not tonight. Set up around the stage, suspended from poles, lanterns added to the ethereal vibe that permeated much of the four-piece’s set.
Playing larger venues has allowed Grizzly Bear to make more of a visual impact and on the epic Lullabye, the marriage of light and sound couldn’t have been more perfect. From its gradual build-up, through dark lush harmonies to a potent climax, it dazzled and dizzied in equal measures.
At times reminiscent of Pink Floyd it was a truly hypnotic display. Foreground’s ominous air further heightened the atmosphere, making the hairs on the back of your neck stand to attention and although there were a few grumbles regarding set list omissions, it was a happy crowd that departed after a sublime encore of He Hit Me.

THE ZOMBIES
ABC1, Glasgow, April 21 * * * *

Old and young fans alike happily danced and bobbed along tonight as 60s survivors The Zombies rolled back the years with their last performance of seminal album Odessey & Oracle on Scottish soil.
Before the main event, the five-piece served up an entertaining set of odds and sods from their debut LP and various solo and side projects but it was O&O the crowd really wanted and after a thirty minute interval that was exactly what we got.
Joined by a selection of helping hands to add, as head Zombie Rod Argent put it, “authenticity”, the four surviving members and guitarist Keith Airy were on good form from opener Call Of Cell 44 to final offering Summertime.
Of course it was always going to fall to track twelve of Odessey, Time Of The Season, to provoke the biggest reaction from what was a devoted audience. Managing to top it could have proved tricky but with debut single She’s Not There they more than pulled it off. By the end they thoroughly deserved the extended ovation that rang out as the five took their final collective bow.

Doves @ ABC1 15-03-09

March 20, 2009

DOVES
ABC1, Glasgow, March 15 * * *

Leaving a gap of more than two years between albums can be risky. Fickle fans move on while new trends and new bands can make the musical landscape an entirely different proposition. But in the light of Elbow’s phoenix-like revival it appears there’s always hope.
For Doves it’s been a troubled four-year hiatus and one ultimately forced upon them by circumstances. Bereavement, label woes and a stubborn perfectionist streak all combined to delay fourth album Kingdom of Rust which four years on from its predecessor, finally gets a release next month.
One thing the trio needn’t have worried about was losing their fan-base. Tonight easily sold out and judging, by the resounding and very vocal response their arrival on stage provoked, they’ll have no problem packing out the Barrowlands next month.
However, whether the new material will do anything more than placate an already loyal following remains to be seen as although performed with passion and power much of it felt one-dimensional.
They were at their best when they deviated from the overly anthemic numbers. The Greatest Denier and new single Kingdom of Rust proved less linear and more adventurous, both easily standing out. But as you’d expect it was the hits that proved most memorable with Pounding undoubtedly the most potent and euphoric of the bunch.