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Friday, 27 May 2011

The Alarm - ABC - Glasgow (25/5/11)

Kerrang awarded 'The Last Republic' four stars, but I'm not getting it.
They can play, but it doesn't do anything for me.
I don't feel the blood pumping through my veins, and there's nary a hair standing up on the back of my neck in excitement.
It's all bombastic indie rock with a bit of an eighties homage going on in the guitar work.......and it bores me to distraction.
Think of Keane covering Echo and the Bunnymen and weep at the thought.
Once again I'll probably be marching out of step with the opinion of others, but I'd rather toddle off on my own than have to pretend that this sort of thing provides me with any real sense of enjoyment.
I wasn't going to have a drink, but they've driven me to it.
Thankfully The Alarm, a real bombastic band from the eighties - yeah I know it's only Mike from the original line up - who do understand how to play with a huge dollop of passion, are here to save the day.
Mike Peters is, in my opinion, a seriously underrated singer and songwriter.
He may have a rock solid fan base who will follow him to the ends of the earth, or even Wales, but without any hint of sarcasm I would put him up their with someone like Springsteen as a performer.
He writes material that can touch anyone from any background because it sounds honest, and unlike others he can deliver them.
That's the secret of his longevity as an artist I suppose.
He's the full package, but if I had my way it wouldn't be treated like a secret and I'd prefer that everyone clicked onto just how good he, and his band, are.
Here they are in Glasgow dropping in to play a date for their Sound and the Fury anniversary tour and the atmosphere is electric.
It could be said that the Alarm simply don't play mediocre shows.
It's as if they've made a verbal contract with the fans that anything less than giving their all wont be enough.
The guitars, drums and keyboard ring out like a battle cry and into the breach they go, and we're right there with them every step of the way.
The communal anthems fill the air and we stretch our throats to accompany the band on every word.

The uninitiated probably wouldn't get it. You have to be there. You have to be swept back and forth by the crowd and witness the effort that is being put into playing and the part that the audience play in it.
What the Alarm understand is that they are a part of what is going on.
An integral part, but just a part none the less. Without the crowd, without the lives that have been lived by each an every person there the show isn't what it is.
This point in time has been thirty years in the making. From pubs and clubs to stadiums to the clubs again until it can be said that they have indeed been here. there and everywhere. This band have paid their dues and they have carried their fans along with them while doing so.
You can't put a price on that, and as the show closed I personally felt that I had been part of something, and that's a feeling that I always have when I've witnessed the Alarm in full flow.
If you want to go and see a band that means something then the name of the band you need to see is The Alarm.

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