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Thursday, 3 July 2014

The Scottish Tour Collective - Pivo - 01/07/14 (Glasgow)

There are many less than savoury characters who are drawn to the music business.
The sort that would rush to the side of a stroke victim in the street screaming “give them some air” and then position themselves at an angle so you couldn't see them rifle the poor persons pockets and bag are equally at home putting on a gig or such.

I have no truck with them.

If they were on fire I would claim my bladder was empty even if I was on the last leg of a legendary pub crawl and carrying enough fluid within that I could have saved the day by liberally hosing down the Glasgow art school in its hour of need.

That being the case, very often people just assume that everyone involved is a shifty eyed loon with one eye on your wallet, and the other randomly rolling about the room looking for other nefarious shenanigans to get up to that could be described as antisocial, or in colloquial terms simply cuntish.
And therein lies a problem, as of course not everyone is like that, and the majority seem to forget, or ignore, all the trials and tribulations that the more ethically minded battle with when they step into the same pool that the sharks infest.

Take my friend Laura Scott for instance.

A few nights ago she arranged as part of a gig swap collective a night for four acts to showcase their talents in the Glasgow city centre venue that is Pivo.
In the days leading up to it one act dropped out and then on the day in question another did the same.
No one ever really talks about this sort of thing.
Often bands offer legitimate reasons, but behind the scenes the good promoters all flock together, and we are all aware of the acts who couldn't play due to a bereavement in the bassists family that apparently was the catalyst for them then to post photographs on social media from a funeral that was obviously held in some nightclub as they expound on their grief by tagging their mates in an image of them downing shots and claiming they are ‘avin it large.

And yes, it does happen.

So with the situation edging closer to the only option being to cancel - and the stress being something that lesser mortals would have a breakdown at the thought of - Laura did what any self respecting promoter would and screamed that the show must go on, and it did.

Drafted in at the very last minute Wes Scott, front man of indie rockers One Last Secret, and partner of Laura, stepped up and played an acoustic set that in many ways saved the night.
Starting off with a song that could slip unnoticed on a Steel Panther acoustic release he put the rock audience at ease and once he had them he led them through some of his own current material, some of his bands older material and then regaled those who attended with a self indulgent cover of Eminem that probably shouldn’t have worked, but did.
As an unannounced addition to the night it was a performance that could have easily sat at the top of the table.
White knights charging in to snatch a victory from the jaws of defeat are always welcome, and it would have done One Last Secret no harm as the name will now be lodged in the heads of a few people who may not have normally considered listening to them.

Glam rockers Deadbeat Ragdoll who are taking baby steps forwards into the live rock scene followed Wes.
A band who are mere months in from forming, and in all honesty may probably still be a month or so away from actually taking to the stage to deliver a solid set.
Kudos do have to be extended to them for being ballsy enough to get out there and make mistakes in public though as sometimes that’s how you push things on.
The plus side is that none of the mistakes on display were game killers
There are parts of their set that they could do with loosening up a bit and others they could do with tightening.
Neither are things that are insurmountable.
Image is of course very obviously something that they consider to be of great import at the moment, but stripping things back a bit and focussing on being able to deliver musically first is always a good move.
It doesn't matter how good anyone looks if they fail to at least cover the basics.
There’s some fantastically shambolic rock acts that have impressed over the years, but the ones who can stay in for the long haul have the music to fall back on, and that’s why it has to be of primary consideration.
The original material will all I assume be works in progress, and within the genre they want to make an impression on they are approaching a light at the end of the tunnel as over all they impressed more than the cover of the Mr Big track that they threw in.

Mr Big are of course a band who I can lay claim to delivering the most passionless, arse numbing and boring gig I have ever attended, and thank fuck the Throbs opened for them and showed how a couple of chords played well and with a bit of attitude can trump virtuosos wanking and fingering the necks of guitars.

The harsh truth of the matter, which is really just my opinion but I am adding some weight to it my claiming it is the truth, is that no one should ever cover Mr Big.
Consider a gent of a certain age dropping his y-fronts to his ankles and looking to indulge in a nostalgia wank to Pans People on Top Of The Pops 2 and up pops Jimmy Saville.
I've been told it’s a passion killer.
Similarly the addition of Mr Big to a set can equally be considered a turn off on that scale.

So thankfully some LA Guns was slipped in to wash the bad taste out of our mouths.
A better inclusion would have been a stab at some Phil Lewis fronted Torme, but Deadbeat Ragdoll my not be familiar with that pre LA Guns and post Girl material (damn I know my fuckin’ stuff man) and it’s forgivable.

It will be interesting to catch up with them a few months down the line and see what they can do.
I fully expect that they will have made a solid step forward by then.

Headline act of the evening was Rank Berry.
A band, that along with Laura Scott, I now co-manage.
So in the interests of avoiding claims of favouritism I’ll just say that the praise they received from those who had seen them before bolstered by those who hadn’t was heart warming and gladly received.

I will leave it to others to heap superlative praise on them.

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