Live Review – Willie J Healey, King Tut’s, Glasgow

Glasgow was the first stop on tour for Oxfordshire’s prodigal son, Willie J Healey, on Wednesday night. King Tut’s provided the perfect venue for the garage rocker and his band to kick off their jaunt around the UK.

BE GOOD were tasked with opening up the evening. The groovy, indie pop quartet from Oxford took us through a set of well crafted songs that more than certainly made them a bunch of new fans north of the border.

By the time Willie J Healey snaked his way to the stage with his Jazzmaster in hand, the crowd were more than ready. It was Healey’s first time playing the Wah Wah Hut and his set couldn’t have got off to a better start as he launched into the soaring ‘My Room.’

Just as it does on the Oxford youngster’s debut album, ‘My Room’ transitioned smoothly into ‘Somewhere In Between’ and then ‘All Those Things.’ But it wasn’t just old favourites on the agenda, latest singles ‘Songs for Joanna’ and ‘Polyphonic Love’ went down a treat.

Willie can switch up styles as often as often as he starts a new song, and in among all the thrashing guitars and wild solos, there were quieter moments. ‘Lovelawn’ and ‘Guitar Music’ provided some chilled saxophone sounds, with the latter being preceded by Willie’s declaration that it was ‘time to boogie.’

Bringing the set to a close, Healey gave us a rip-roaring ‘Lazy Shade of Pink’ before his band left the stage and he brought it all to an end on his own with the beautiful ‘We Should Hang.’ The best possible way to close a triumphant King Tuts debut for Willie J Healey.

Willie J Healey’s new EP ‘Hello Good Morning,’ is released on November 15th on Yala! Records.

Posted by: Craig Pool


NEW ORDER – Power, Corruption & Lies (Released: 2nd May 1983)

New Order PC&L
New Order performed for the first time in Glasgow at Eglinton Toll Plaza in January 1981. They would release their first single ‘Ceremony’ two months later and their debut album ‘Movement’ would appear in November of that year. They would perform at Glasgow Tiffany’s in April 1983 to promote the release of their next album, ‘Power, Corruption & Lies’.

By the time of the Tiffany’s gig New Order had arrived, distinctively different form the Plaza show. Included in that set was ‘Blue Monday’, ‘Temptation’ and ‘Confusion’ which would be produced by Arthur Baker who had also produced the Kraftwerk influenced ‘Planet Rock’ by Afrika Bambaataa. ‘Power, Corruption & Lies’ is a beautiful record from the sleeve design by Peter Saville, to the songs and the production by New Order (Bernard Sumner and Peter Hook had watched and learned from Martin Hannett). The title of the album was chosen by Bernard Sumner from a 1981 conceptual art exhibition in Cologne, Germany. On the opening night of the exhibition the artist Gerhard Richter vandalised the exterior of the Kunsthalle by spray painting the text, “Power, Corruption, and Lies. Still seems a very apt title given today’s political climate.
New Order creates it! FEAST rates it!

Join the Library (#3)

A CERTAIN RATIO – TO EACH… (Originally released May 1981) (Re-mastered and re-released November 2017)
A Certain Ratio To Each
This is the third in a series about how my local libraries (Baillieston and Shettleston) afforded me a wonderful musical adventure and the huge impact they made on me. I joined them as a 16 year old because I couldn’t afford albums and borrowing from them appeared to me to be the perfect solution…which it most certainly was.

To Each… is the second album and debut LP by English band A Certain Ratio, released in 1981 by record label Factory. It followed on some eighteen months after the release of the band’s first album, The Graveyard and the Ballroom, available in cassette only in a variety of coloured plastic sleeves.

The sleeve is apt as it alludes to the broad palette of sound employed by ACR throughout this record. At the time of it’s release the band were continually and lazily branded as Joy Division copyists. They weren’t. The bass and drum work of Jeremy Kerr and Donald Johnson locks in the way that Holger Czukay and Jaki Liebezeit did with Can, especially on the album Tago Mago.

It remains an intense listen, an artistic statement full of weird electronic sounds, dub, funk and jazz elements mining yet another individualistic sonic path which to my ears is still futuristic.

Mute Records have begun the A Certain Ratio album re-issues. Click here A Certain Ratio

Live Review – Cabbage, The Shimmer Band, Stereo, Glasgow

Explosive psychedelic rock outfit The Shimmer Band are full of confidence, swagger and energy and have been causing quite the stir with their quick rise of prolific support slots and high-praised press.
The Bristol band are absolutely destined for the festival fields, huge venues, stadiums even, with their re-brand of psychedelic synth rock which takes it’s roots from many of the 90s greats such as the Verve, and Primal Scream but their set is full of modern flourishes. Enormously uplifting, the band’s epic sound is apparent on single ‘Shoot Me (Baby)’ with it’s terrace-style chant and almighty Stooges style stomp and bursts of electronica which punctuate throbbing bass and spiky guitar. It is destined to be a festival anthem.
The most promising tracks of their set, included latest single ‘Jacknife And The Death Call’ and ‘Sunkick’ which is brimming with Primal Scream swagger. Whilst ‘Freedom’ is a hands in the air chorus heavy track.

The band already have an arsenal of songs which only add to their rapidly rising reputation. Euphoric, powerful and gloriously uplifting, here’s to the summer, and festivals when we can belt out their tunes to great abandon.
The Shimmer Band
Regardless of the fantastic set from The Shimmer Band before them, the swelling crowd were really focused on band of the moment Cabbage.
Certainly, they are one of most hyped bands in the country right now, and everybody seems to have an opinion of them and their left wing political lyricism. The sold out eclectic crowd at Stereo is made up of indie kids, curious kids, (and their parents) and aging skinheads, and everyone in between which further highlight Cabbage’s broad appeal in uniting people.
As soon as Mossley outfit Cabbage saunter onto the stage to the ‘Rawhide’ theme, they then proceed to tear through a solid set of immersive post-punk and unashamedly abrasive left-wing, political tracks. There is an underlying atmosphere that the band are intent on causing chaos and opinion than conforming.

‘Uber Capitalist Death Trade’ stands out as one of tonight’s many highlights, its primitive chorus is brash, obnoxious and full of punk vigour.
‘Terrorist Synthesizer’ simply mirrors raucous pissed up nature of tonight’s crowd as both crowd and band bustle around and are chucked over the frenzied crowd below. Whilst, Kevin’ is delivered as a stomping track reminiscent of The Fall.
The band perform with wild abandon and deliver a set full of anger, political spit fury and pure pride of being lower class.
‘Necroflat In The Palace’ and the America/ Trump bashing, ‘Free Steven Avery (Wrong America)’, simply rile up the crowd further. ‘Necroflat…’ sneers hatred at the Royals’ and their awareness of the dark underbelly of celebrity behaviours, as both band and crowd chant “I was born in the NHS, I wanna die in NHS”, as the band lead the crowd in rousing hands in the air protest before diving back into the crowd.
Whilst ‘It’s Grim Up North Korea’ and ‘Gibraltar Ape’ go down well with the adoring frenzied crowd.

Cabbage’s astute cynicism is apparent throughout their set and their impish humour (‘Dinnerlady’) is unapologetic in its soundtrack for this unsettled and angry era. If you don’t like the look of what we are currently witnessing then look away now as it’s only about to get worse as Cabbage narrate brexit Britain.
Believe the hype.

Posted by Stacy Rowan

Edinburgh’s Hogmanay 2016/17

Edinburgh’s Hogmanay had a strong line up, showcasing some of Scotland’s fantastic acts including Paolo Nutini, Frightened Rabbit, Fatherson and Be Charlotte, as well as indie hereos The Charlatans.
Feast took to the street party with the throngs and brought in the bells with an outstanding classic laden set from The Charlatans.

First up on the Waverley stage was Dundonian band Be Charlotte.
After firmly establishing herself in the consciousness of Scotland’s blogs and press with a serious of great sets at festivals up and down the country. Be Charlotte won over the crowd with her colourful stage attire and blend of innovative pop compositions,rapping in her dulcet tones, sweeping, impassioned vocal power and gritty beat-boxing loops.
The band delivered a colourful and confident performance, and bigger stages are sure to beckon. This year certainly looks set to be a big one for Be Charlotte.

Next up were new Scottish heroes Fatherson.
Following on from their sold out show at the Barras, the band look elated to see the massive crowd snaking up Waverley bridge.
Fatherson recieved a strong reception and the crowd’s appreciation was clear as the band led a soaring, rousing sing along. Vocalist Ross Leighton’s powerful yet gentle voice powered the band through their dynamic set.
Given their impressive own brand of melodic anthems, and sold out shows, the Ayrshire band are hotly tipped to be Scotland’s breakthrough band of 2017.
The Charlatans brought in 2017 with a career defining bells straddling set, mixing old and new throughout.
From the unmisstakeable opening hammond organ of ‘Weirdo’, the Charlies delivered a celebratory set of sing alongs with ‘Blackened Blue Eyes’, ‘Tellin Stories’ and ‘How High’.
With 2016 promptly told where to go, waved off and with fireworks seemingly going off in every direction, The Charlatans launched into 2017 with glorious abandon as the indie anthems of ‘North Country Boy’, ‘You’re So Pretty’ and ‘The Only One I Know’ were unleashed onto the fever pitch party crowd.

Whilst most bands at this stage in their career would be bored and tired of touring and playing the same songs over. The Charlatans and (never ageing) Tim Burgees in particular seem to be even more up for it, playing with renewed vigour.
Perhaps the band are on extra shots of Tim Peak’s coffee or maybe it’s the realisation that they are a classic band, playing and releasing on their own terms now and that they have the arsenal of anthems to make a gig like this seem like a proper celebratory gig. Or maybe they just wanted to slam the door on 2016 like the rest of us and have a big party.

Returning to the stage for a triumphant encore, and closing with ‘Sproston Green’ certainly proves that The Charlatans are still not only relevant but are full of exciting ideas for the future.

Posted by Stacy Rowan

Single Review: Noah Noah – Champion

In Feast’s opinion Scotland has produced quite a variety of musical talent over the years which includes quite possibly the most successful of the moment, Biffy Clyro.
Scottish melodic rock quartet Noah Noah are looking to continue that trend, slowly building a reputation through supporting Kirsten Adamson on her recent UK tour. With confidence high following the support they got for their track ‘Lips’ from Amazing Radio’s Jim Gellatly among others, Noah Noah will be launching their latest single, ‘Champion’ at Feastival – Feast Records annual blog party, which takes place at Edinburgh’s Sneaky Pete’s on Thursday 2nd June.
With the spritely and uplifting ‘Champion’ the band plays with dynamics; at times being very full on; at other stripping the track back to vocals, a little drum and some finger picking before swelling into heavy beats and more intense vocals. This effective use of dynamics also helps the band convey the emotion of the song more effectively and this combined with it’s catchy anthem-like driving chorus means this track will be stuck in your head.
Lead singer Fraser Fulton displays an impressive vocal range which demonstrates a great ability to connect with the listener and he is joined by equally powerful backing vocals from the band. It is the song’s conclusion which is it’s real highlight as it culminates in a dramatic, powerful, raw finish which erupts with such precise timing into a hook so raw and emotive, it leaves the listener wanting more.
‘Champion’ promises to be on many playlists this summer generating a great interest regarding what’s to follow from Noah Noah.

Noah Noah headline Feastival at Sneaky Pete’s on Thursday 2nd June 7pm-10pm.
Tickets £4 (in adv), £5 (on the door)
Tickets here:
Facebook Event:

Review of Dante w/ Alan Carberry & Sian + A.H. Doune @ Electric Circus, Friday 23/10/2015

Written by Liam Dickson @ FEAST
As Dante hit the road for a handful of Scottish shows to warm up before heading across the pond for their first foray into performing stateside, I caught up with singer, guitarist and songwriter Sean McLaughlin before their set at Edinburgh’s Electric Circus for a blether about the tour, heading to the states and gearing up for the release of their second album.
So far the tour is going well for Dante; bar one cancelled show each performance has gone down a treat, McLaughlin saying it’s good to get away from the central belt and main cities to beat the track slightly less trodden. McLaughlin hails from Shetland originally himself, so he must be relishing the opportunity to play some more stripped back material in similar locales to where he grew as a musician and as a person; though towns like Perth and Inverness are hardly as rural as Shetland, in comparison to Glasgow or Edinburgh it’s decidedly more modest.
Support tonight came from acoustic two-some Alan Carberry & Sian as well as solo multi-instrumentalist A.H. Doune. I can’t say much on these guys as I was upstairs chatting with Sean during their sets, but the brief couple of minutes I overheard of each set were pretty good – Alan Carberry & Sian performed the most delicate acoustic set, just their fragile vocals and guitar to accompany; and A.H. Doune gave us a set of trippy, bluesy loops and massively reverberated vocals as a one-man band of electric guitar and a desk rammed with a laptop and countless gizmos.
As for Dante’s set, I probably wouldn’t have known it was an acoustic gig if I hadn’t been told – they sounded as confident and full-bodied as any ‘plugged in’ act, the acoustic guitars and mandolin offering an alternative sound to Dante’s music rather than a more minimal one. The financial viability of perfoming in the US has previously been an issue for Dante, citing now to be the time to head over in the run up to their second-album release and now having the far cheaper option of lugging only a handful of guitars across the Atlantic rather than a full band rig, though they should be safe in the knowledge that this decision has in no way sacrificed the quality of their live performance. They play a few existing songs to start proceedings, like ‘Ghost’ and ‘Know Where You Are’ … “A poet’s muse, every line is a bruise, it’s a full time job to pretend you’re abused” It’s a shame their professional sound and stunningly mature lyrics are falling on the ears of a sparse crowd, but it’s their loss!
“Okay, this is the point in the set where it all goes very well, or very badly… Very well, definitely!” McLaughlin is obviously confident in his songwriting ability but that quintessentially Scottish sense of self-doubt can’t help but peek through, more humbling than debilitating and only feeding the emotional strength of the songs their self. His influences range from the obscurest local folk singers of his hometown through to popular modern acts like Frightened Rabbit, Gaslight Anthem and Idlewild – McLaughlin also plays as part of The Birthday Suit, a side project of Idlewild guitarist Rod Jones and he expresses his satisfaction from playing with a musician he looked up to for many years. Mercury prize winning fellow Leithers Young Fathers even cropped up in conversation and shows his taste in music is not just based on folk or indie but anything soulful that comes from the heart and manifests in a primal, unpretentious way.
I asked Sean how the new material would differ from that of the first album (produced again by Andy Monaghan of Frightened Rabbit) and he cites the biggest influence on his songwriting now is parenthood – every singer says the same, that bringing a child into the world shifts your outlook drastically and it undoubtedly spills over into your work. His perspective has changed but his head (or heart, rather) is always cast back homeward as Sean admits that his lyrics are sometimes autobiographical but always set in Shetland; “I’m 30 now, with 2 kid, so I can no longer pretend to be a young guy from Shetland, singing about teenage problems of ‘Ooh, my girlfriend doesn’t like me, I haven’t got any money!'” McLaughlin has changed but Shetland has not, still offering the same emotional pull and warm imagery that defines the lyrical style of Dante. Though one of the songs performed tonight came from such a period (having been written when Sean was only 17) the massive age gap in the songs is unnoticable, the established and the unreleased offering real continuity in the setlist. My personal favourite of the new bunch was ‘Rose’, a quick paced song both fast and mellow with the mandolin constantly picking away a pedal over the top. The whole band provide backing vox to stunning effect, giving off that gather-round-the-hearth country pub singalong feel and it warms the soul.
Of his next album, McLaughlin reckons it’s not as outright ‘folky’ as the first as family life in the capital has obviously distanced him from the comforts of home, though he has no qualms about being regarded as primarily a folk musician. Reductive media tags aside, if tonight’s perfomance is anything to go by they will go down a storm in both Philadelphia and the Big Apple; the market for folk in Scotland is saturated to say the least and will be a welcome, niche change of pace in the land of freedom. Best of luck guys, though I doubt you need it!

‘ElevenFiftySeven’ EP by Return to the Sun – Sneak Peek!

Written by Liam Dickson @ FEAST
Return to the Sun
I’ve never reviewed a release, never mind one that isn’t even out yet; but why the hell not if this is the starting point. Return to the Sun caught my eye at a gig at Electric Circus in Edinburgh, myself and front man Stephen McAfferty getting talking online; a few emails later, here we are! The ‘ElevenFiftySeven’ EP, due for release in December, was recorded at The Depot studios tucked away in the deepest reaches of unchartered Granton with the go-to-guy for production in the capital Mark Morrow, five tracks in total. The cover art, designed by bassist Sean Ford, appears to depict some kind of off-kilter granite vortex sucking you into the underworld – the calming blue backdrop and rounded edges offer a levity making it not too jarring an image and suits the music it graphically represents; heavy but alluring. The circular design also no doubt alludes to what is implied in the title… ElevenFiftySeven. Just numbers, right? Wrong! We’ve all seen it on the news before, some crackpot claiming ‘the end of days is nigh’, but when scientists concoct a ‘doomsday clock’ to represent how close we are to, well, doomsday; that’s a pretty frightening thought! If midnight is curtain call, we’re just three minutes away within the timescale of humanity, hence ‘ElevenFiftySeven’… Weren’t expecting that from an EP were you?! The fictional female subject offers us insight into the drug-induced haze the people have adopted to blot out the inevitable in their version of reality (sounds an awful lot like ours too). However, this isn’t a macabre affair, more an inspirational call to arms – shake off your demons, live the life you dreamt of, proclaim your love from the mountaintops! We’ve a limited time in this world so don’t go wasting it – I’d say that is about as damn uplifting a subject matter you could possibly choose.
Right, here we go; no long drawn out introductions here, RTTS are off like a shot with this two minute exercise in no-nonsense riffage, ‘Static’. All instruments are played to full capacity for no longer than ten seconds before giving way to a bassline crawling through the sludge and some seriously cool lyrics, each line broke up with a harsh DA-DA-DA-DA rip on the guitar. “My head is full of static, like a broken TV” goes the chorus; and the verses tell of spiders in his bed, his “anxiety keeps them well fed”; this is the first of many examples throughout the EP where the lyrics written don’t seem to fit squarely into the rhythm of the vocal melody line, but somehow vocalist Stephen finds a way, displaying an aptitude for making the words just flow with unconventional emphasis that makes for a far more interesting listen than if he wrote some boring old nice-and-neat rhyming couplets. He knows what he wants to say, and he knows how he’s going to say it.
Riff verse chorus, riff verse chorus – that’s all there is to this song and that’s all we need; the second chorus really ramps it up with some ‘woo woos’ as catchy as a fish hook. It sounds like a whole room full of people are singing along but I’ll bet it’s down to the production wizardry of Morrow, a near perfect pair-up. A signal of intent this song is, as by the end you already know RTTS have stepped up their game for this EP, both in theme, lyrical content and instrumentation.
Caught your breath? Good, we’ll move on. ‘Waiting to Arrive’ is track number two, opening with delicate piano twinkle mirrored by simple guitar picking, both backed by a rather quick snapping snare click (do I hear the ticking of that doomsday clock?) A bit like Depeche Mode with an undeniable Scots-rock bent in the verse, the chorus comes in kicking like a mule with soaring vocals; ‘Waiting to arrive, but we’re already… heeeere!’ A strong track, though my favourite part has to be the very end; as distorted guitar slowly but surely decays with atmospheric (to put it mildly) broken piano chords played as slow and soft as a funeral march, then before you realize it’s happening that decaying guitar bubbles back up, more and more until it shakes you retinas then – nothing, excluding a mild reverb as the track really does fade out this time. Haunting. Brilliant!
Now we come to, in my opinion, the centerpiece of the record; ‘Electrical Bugs’ is another straight-to-business number, a millisecond of whoosh before the band are in full mid-tempo swing. Now, you might find this a rather odd comparison, but the lead guitar line and various solos throughout this tune reminded me somewhat of the Sonic Adventure soundtrack – you know, that old video game? Not just in guitar tone but in the epic, unpretentious, tears-of-happiness mood it instils in me; maybe an unconventional statement but saying your music reminds me of some of the most care-free moments of my childhood is about the highest accolade I can attribute. The chorus chops and changes between an indie shuffle and onslaught of overdrive, the vocals distorted just a little for that walkie-talkie voice in your head quality.
Stephen has great singing range! He never overstretches his vocal cords or simply start to shout when going up the scale nor does he feel the need to warble like Elvis when bringing it back down again, both high and low-pitched deliveries cutting through and over the other instrument tracks juuust the right amount – it would be a real shame if his lyrical flair was washed away in the ocean of fuzz underpinning the EP’s most intense points.
‘Velvet Sky’ wins the award for best chorus, it’s so familiar but you know it’s doesn’t rip anything off, that feeling of familiarity just indicative of strong songwriting – the best songs make you feel as if they’ve been with you all along. Opening with a steady four-to-the-floor thumping bass drum (that ticking clock again?) and palm-muted lead guitar delayed to the point where you can’t really tell what the root note even was, almost indie-serenity, it truds along all funky, Stephen singing ‘You know that I’d rather be hated, by you than ignored’, once more for good luck, ‘BY YOU THAN IGNOOOORED’ before that previously cited awesome chorus kicks in. I’d love to have been in that studio hearing the playback for this one, getting slapped round the side of the head by those monitors. The lead guitar part around the three minute mark could give the one from Bowie’s ‘Moonage Daydream’ a kick up the backside in a square-go of the solos. Stephen is an absolute dynamite lyricist in terms of imagery; either heart-breaking or life-affirming, I can’t decide. Both, probably.
While we talk of imagery, the closing track fits firmly into the former tag; ‘Until I Fall Asleep’ brings the energy down for a more acoustic-driven track sounding not unlike a somber ceilidh waltz (though not in 3/4, just that you could definitely have a slow dance to this). Soft, simple guitar chords backed by warm strings but just a smidgen, more chamber group than full blown bombastic orchestra. I’m picturing a music video set around the ruined kirk halfway up Arthur’s Seat, fireflies floating about the dusk. This song is stripped of the creeping psychedelia of previous tracks as our narrator/character/subject (whatever term best describes the fictional source of all these thoughts and feelings) loses the ignorant bliss which shielded her from reality and starkly comes face-to-face with what she, and let’s face it, all of us are trying desperately to block out – the big bad world, the collapse of society, the end of days or anything as equally humbling, I’m sure every individual will interpret this differently. If all this philosophical undertone is getting you down in the dumps, go back, listen to ‘Static’ and start dancing round your bedroom all over again!
From start to finish we hear bright vocal delivery with strong lyrics and compelling imagery, varied uplifting melodies, a solid skeletal backbone in drummer Jason Rees, mental guitar work, scuzzy distortion, heartfelt piano lines, I could go on and on… You just know this EP will translate fluently into a live setting (a test run of ‘Electrical Bugs’ at the gig mentioned in my introduction can attest to that), but that’s not to diminish ElevenFiftySeven as a standalone piece of work, more than a mere audio snapshot of ‘where we are as a band’. The release date isn’t for a while yet, so don’t be surprised if you see me pushing this article more than a few times in the lead up to it – like a nagging parent who knows best, you’ll thank me in the long run!
Here are all the links you could need:
Official site:

Review of Spector w/ Golden Arm & Spring King @ Electric Circus, 20/10/2015

Written by Liam Dickson @ FEAST
There was a positive atmosphere the moment I walked into Electric Circus tonight, you feel it on occasion – some kind of general amicability throughout the venue, everyone here for a good time and aware of it in those around them, no deadpan posers leaning against the back wall judging the dancing free spirits down the front and nobody vying for more attention than the bands on the bill. Spector have come straight up the A1 (presumably) from London to Edinburgh for only the second time in support of their new album ‘Moth Boys’ and beat my expectations, performing for a teaming Electric Circus.
3-piece Golden Arm are first on the bill tonight, sounding to some degree like Franz Ferdinand but far more like the old-skool Scottish post-punk scene they were influenced by – Josef K, Aztec Camera, Orange Juice, that lot – and the singer sounds the absolute spit of Edwyn Collins! Up-beat, quick-paced and non-pretentious, their obvious light-heartedness comes through in the music they play and their stage presence. “You’re here to see Spector, I presume?” says the singer; “Well, if they’re here to see the Kooks they’re f*cked!” the drummer chimes in, a solid backbone to the band. The solos sound almost Dire Straits-y and bass and guitar chords move together in big chunky blocks spanning all frequencies. The guitar could have done with a tad more treble to help it cut through the mix just a little bit, but that’s about the only hole I could pick in the set. They have an EP coming out on the 31st October, be sure to check it out!
The main support tonight is from Manchester outfit Spring King who were so much fun! Coming on stage looking like a right motley crew of trucker caps, beanie hats and brandless baseball tops, their high-energy set never relented (apart from one slow one near the end), breakneck indie beats and brash guitars awash with fragmented sharp snippets of reverb and layers of Lennon-esque vocal delay, as in lots of it but not for very long. ‘Can’ sounds like a sweetened Ramones spliced with a slightly less deranged Dead Kennedys – “If I’m not dead, If I’m not dead I’m going home!”, sings the drummer stroke singer stroke front man (quite a mouthful) – and ‘Batman’ was the best of bunch in my opinion, the best example of pace and playing style converging into what is essentially surf-punk without the ‘surf’ clichés, if that’s make any sense at all. “Tonight, I just wanna be somebody else, somebody new” – innocent, youthful lyrics derived from a world of comic book kitsch. ‘My Sleeves’ is that afore mentioned slower one, it’s chilled Motown-like beat playing backing to lyrics both sweet as sugar and weirdly abstract – “Take my hand, take my hand with you”, an odd image if you think about it for too long – the song being filled out with a solo like a more abrasive Mac DeMarco. The band looked like they were having the time of their life pogoing away, except the drummer/singer who was too in the zone and, well, too seated to do the same but his ability to thump away on the kit and still turn in a flawless and composed vocal performance was impressive to say the least.
Headliner time: front man Fred McPherson comes bounding onstage looking, erm, different to how I’d imagined he would; publicity shoots from the first album era look like rejected applications for Made In Chelsea, suits as sharp as a button, the kind of neurotic quiff fixing that Alex Turner is getting a bashing for (not too much of a shock to see some of their past gigs have been sponsored by Topman), and I’ve not exactly been keeping up to date with the band. So I wasn’t expecting a not-so-fresh plain white t-shirt and unkempt ponytails! But if that’s what he’s comfortable wearing, then go for it; stages aren’t catwalks after all, and this more ‘unrefined’ attitude permeated into the performance. The place was packed, and I mean PACKED, the cheers and post-song applauds bigger than you’d think possible in a venue of this size. Spector serve as an almost pop and rock melting pot, the most popular comparison being The Killers, which I find reductive; yeah, big choruses, guitar, 80’s synths, fair enough, but it’s far too easy a comparison. I hear indie rock, new wave, new romantic, synth pop, some straight-up balladry and the tongue is undeniably pressed firmly against the cheek despite the honesty and veiled pain hidden between the lines creeping through. McPherson is a born front man, his over the top mic-stand maneuvers and dynamic use of the limited space on stage would be hackneyed if deployed by anybody else – with McPherson it seems more than natural. He downright refuses to shy away from the audience, maintaining eye contact that makes you feel like he’s peering into your soul (I got it a couple of times, he locks your gaze!) and leaning about as far into the audience over the edge of the stage as gravity would allow – the people down the front must have been able to smell his scent and a lucky few got to hold his hand whilst he crooned directly for them all Romeo and Juliet. New cuts ‘Decade of Decay’ and ‘Cocktail Party’ went down a storm, and these fresh songs were equaled out with picks from the debut so as not to lean to heavily either way. I was never that sure of Spector before tonight but they’ve definitely converted me now. Top set!

Some useful links:

Review of Indigo Velvet w/ Lewis Capaldi & Lisbon @ Electric Circus 9/10/2015

Written by Chloe Mcintyre @ FEAST
When previously asked what the audience should expect when at a live set of Indigo Velvet their exact words were “Sweat, Hip Wriggling..and a party” and they couldn’t be more right! In fact there’s not many bands I know whose music gives the audience just a feel good, let your hair down vibe, but I have to say, Indigo Velvet is definitely one of them. Indigo Velvet
For their first headliner show in Edinburgh, the turnout was absolutely phenomenal, giving you barely any space to actually move around the Electric Circus, but that’s the sign of a good gig to come, am I right?
But before talking about the headliner, I need to highlight the talented support acts because they obviously built up the energetic atmosphere.
Lewis Capaldi is the young talent who started up the party with an acoustic set of his own songs and even a brilliant mash up cover of well known tunes that the crowd could sing along too. All that and his brilliant interaction with everyone in between songs made his set an extremely good one, I definitely have to say that if you’ve not already heard of him, go and listen to him.
Next up were the band Lisbon, showcasing a vibe that reminded me of Indigo Velvet, a lot of dancy, sing a long, feel good sounds. The floor was filled with budding ears ready to hear some new music . I have to mention that the song “Rio” got everyone to their feet, kudos to that. This band deserve a listen.
Indigo Velvet’s set was full of surprises, from fun things like Jason’s see drumming solos throughout songs, talented local performer Chris Greig being invited on stage to perform his cover of ‘Wooden Pavements’ (which I must add was truly phenomenal), even to a member of the crowd taking the microphone and owning the stage at the last song. All in all it was hard to believe that this was the first time the boys headlined a gig in Edinburgh, everything from stage presence, song choice and crowd reactions is definitely one to remember. My only wish was that I was tall enough to catch it all on video! This gig followed the release of the bands new song ‘Blue’ which I will link below, I challenge you to listen to that while trying to sit still, it’s damn near impossible. Anyhow, well done guys, yet again I think everyone’s expectations were filled, heres to next time eh? (link to single)