Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Glasgow Academy review

Like a defender after a series of fouls, The View were on the verge of a second yellow with ELM. Yes, we’d seen them in the first, euphoric rush of joy emanating from the early singles and triumphant debut album ‘Hats Off to the Buskers’. Yes, we’d been caught up in just how great their wonderful, folksy pop sounded like a fully-realised Libertines. But then we’d seen them in full-on ‘too pissed to perform’ mode. And not just once. Basically, they didn’t seem to give a fuck about their audience, and we were starting to reciprocate.

Thank God for tonight’s show then. The place is going properly, officially, mentally barmy. The reaction to the pre-gig tape of classic indie (Stone Roses, Oasis, Primal Scream) goes down better than most bands do. There are singalongs. There are pints thrown. And while it’s undeniable that The View attract what you might euphemistically call a ‘working-class’ audience then well, by Christ, are they making this place intense. It’s absolutely amazing before they’ve even come on.

But fair play, when they do arrive, it’s astonishing. The band are simply superb; the tracks from second album ‘Which Bitch?’ gain a liveliness they haven’t had on record. The tracks from ‘Hats Off…’ are greeted like old friends bringing you back presents. ‘The Don’ unbelievably rackets the noise up a decibel, which seemed impossible. ‘Jimmy’s Crazy Conspircay’ sees more liquid thrown in the air than your average shower. The noise is phenomenal, the band feeding off it. You want to talk about synchronicity Sting? Be here.

And the level of care, something they’d forgotten about before, is here and apparent. There’s an malfunction with the electric guitars; lead man Kyle simply slaps on an acoustic and plays for three songs. It’s an incredible tour de force. B-Side ‘Mr. Men Book’ (”I can read you like a fucking Mr. Men book”) is a lost classic. The sojourn is so great that bassist Keiran re-enters the stage when everything is fixed and says ‘that was fucking brilliant wee man’ and he’s right.

They play a fantastically fun cover of ‘Up the Junction’ before we get the obligatory and brilliant ‘Same Jeans’ and their defining statement ‘Superstar Tradesman’. Yes, The View aren’t turning up any trees in terms of new music, but anyone who says they’d rather watch Radiohead live these days is either lying or related to Jonny Greenwood. This is live music; this is about drink, dancing and having a good time. And sometimes that’s enough. Tonight certainly is.

By Extreme Listening Mode, Posted on May 18, 2009


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