Live Review – WIRE at King Tuts Wah Wah Hut, Glasgow

King Tuts Glasgow
Wire do not reform as do other groups from the past, they reconvene. This has happened two or three times in fact since their illustrious beginnings, coinciding with the emergence of punk in the 1970’s. Three great albums were released starting with Pink Flag in 1977, quickly followed by Chairs Missing in 1978 and 154 in 1979, each wildly different from the other. If you’ve never heard these albums then the tracks below will give you a taste of their unique approach to music making.

After the release 154, Wire wrote songs which sadly never saw the light of day. This has now been corrected with the recent release of Change Becomes Us, a re-working of many of these songs which effectively would’ve been their fourth album.

At Kings Tuts tonight they showcase a handful of songs from this album including the mighty “Stealth of a Stork”, “Adore Your Island” and “Magic Bullet”. These are interspersed with tracks spanning their whole career to date from Pink Flag to 2011’s Red Barked Tree. Many of tonights songs such as the wonderful “Map Ref”, from Chairs Missing, clock in at under four minutes which demonstrate a restless energy within the band to continually push the boundaries of angular guitar pop.

Wire also included new tracks in their set due to be released on a new album in 2014, “Blogging for Jesus” and “ Flying Dutchman” which drove one member of the audience to chant for more familiar songs which Wire clearly had no intention of playing, causing Colin Newman to retort “someones only heard one Wire song”. There is no room for sentiment in Wire songs and the band don’t hang about on stage with either tuning up or exchanging pleasantries with the audience. Theirs is generation punk – existential.

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