Skating Polly are a young band from Tacoma, USA. I’ve been aware of them for a while and this gig was a break from their tour supporting Kate Nash, too good to miss and I’m glad I went through to Glasgow. Formed in Oklahoma by step sisters Peyton and Kelli when they were just 14 and 9 … they are not much older now but have progressed from twee but original tunes to more powerful post punk with the addition of brother Kurtis on drums.
Not quite sure what to expect but I was impressed as howls of noise gave way to energetic riffs with melodic vocals and interesting lyrics. They can play big and loud but the tunes are always there. Peyton leads the music and Kurt adds beefy beats, but it’s younger sister Kelli that grabs most attention, a supernova of energy and a blur of movement. Well impressed!
Apologies for rubbish pics … odd lighting, phone camera and much sweatiness!
8/11 Attended by George
This was the first day of the new TRNSMT festival, a potential replacement for T in the Park, and though I saw lots of bands I was really only there to see the best band in the world … Radiohead! I was there the last time they played Glasgow Green in 2009. That was a great experience and this one was every bit as good, if not better.
A 2hr 10min set sounds long and hard work, but it was far from that, instead the time just flew by through a great set celebrating the best of their catalogue including many of my absolute favourite songs. Apart from the odd altercation, the crowd were magnificent and sang along beautifully, what a great bunch of singers, at best the combination was really moving. As always Radiohead played perfectly, reproducing the songs superbly with some subtle variations and the sound was excellent. All brilliant musicians, Thom Yorke the focal point, but such a clear sound let me hear perfectly just how good Colin Greenwood is on bass, genius. The visuals provided by the enormous backdrop were also simply astounding.
Radiohead have an undeserved reputation for being serious and depressing, but I couldn’t stop smiling and bopping along like most of the crowd. At the end of their second multi song encore they finished with ‘Karma Police’ and the audience (and my) singing of the ‘I lost myself’ refrain carried through the end of the set and for a long time afterwards while everyone wended their way home. Simply a wonderful day!
10/11 – Attended by George, Andy, Jude, Douglas
Mannequin Pussy are a relatively new band from Philadelphia that are attracting a lot of interest for their energetic post-punk noise that veers from thrash to melodic through a set full of short punchy songs. Singer Marisa Dabice is obviously the focus of attention and it’s hard to take your eyes of her magnetic performance, but the band are tight with notably powerful drumming. Though not especially original or exceptional I enjoyed their set and look forward to seeing what comes next from them.
7/11 – Attended by George
I really enjoyed her first album ‘Philharmonics’, though not been so keen on recent albums, but thought it would be good to see her live, and accompanied by 3 versatile musicians it was a really enjoyable show.
Agnes has a subtle, smoky voice that compliments her intricate piano led songs with typically downbeat lyrics. A fragile, delicate sound that would work better in more intimate surroundings. An unusual atmosphere for a ‘rock’ venue … the feeling more like a classical recital, but things warmed up and got more enthusiastic by the end.
7.5/11 Attended by George
We’ve seen Cara quite a few times, and not much more than a year ago. I was thinking, do we really need to see a similar set again? Well a few moments into ‘There Were Roses’ and then ‘Black Is The Colour’ reminded me what a special artist she is. The emotion in her wonderful voice and reflected back from the audience was really moving. Cara, and her wonderful band, never let you down. Lovely!
8/11 Attended by George & Karen
Half Formed Things are a fairly new band and I thought from the few songs I heard that they had great potential. So we were intrigued to see them live. Well they really are impressive. Karen thought they might be a bit underwhelming but she was blown away by them and can’t wait for their next gig.
Matthew and Morgan share vocal duties brilliantly, and Stuart provides sensitive and dynamic drumming (a stark contrast from his other role in Britney!). Songs are lengthy with flows and ebbs back to spectacular crescendos. A relatively short set but they know how to leave us wanting more and I really look forward to more new material.
8/11 Attended by George & Karen
To see Mugison from Iceland for the first time was the main reason I came all the way to Hull for the North Atlantic Flux festival. He’s been a hero of mine for ages since I love his unorthodox, melodic yet powerful songs and idiosyncratic approach to his music. A short but great solo set too with all of my favourites of his ‘hits’ especially ‘Þjóðarsálin’ with his long and funny explanation of how his roaring singing resulted in a messy accident!
Fantasic to see him joined for ‘… Son of a Boyo’ by another hero Einar Örn from Ghostigital / Sugarcubes. I got to meet and talk to Mugi outside and talk guitars, a gracious and funny guy. Fair made my weekend it did. Magic!
8.5/11 Attended by George