I LARGE-SCALE concert venues are sadly lacking In Central Scotland, so Listen! is watching the plans for Coasters Arena in Falkirk with great interest. Built for sports like basketball and roller-skating, it is hoped that the Arena’s 3800 capacity, giant video screen, easy transport from Edinburgh and Glasgow and parking space for
1 000 cars will attract enough bands to make it a regular live venue. it opens its doors on March 13 lor the first of four weekly heats of a band contest, the llnal of which takes place at thesame ' ' venue on May 1. A country and western lestival (the biggest in Scotland, we’re told) will take place later in the month, but it hasn’t yet been revealed which Memphis refugees will be trudging around Falkirk looking for a late bar. One talking point of Coasters Arena is bound to be the musicaliy- ' synchronised coloured lighting system in the ceiling, installed at great expense.
I LOOK OUT lor The lndian Givers, who played their low-key debut gig in the cool confines of Edinburgh’s trendy City Cafe on the last day oi February. Basically Nigel Slealord, who writes and sings all the songs, The lndian Givers are purveyors of restrained and intelligent jazzy songs. Judging from their performance at the City Cafe,
where the minimal instrumentation forced the songs to stand on their own two feel, it won’t be too long before record companies are waving chequebooks in their direction. Watch this band.
I Allen Sex Fiend: All Our Yesterdays (Anagram). inevitably, lsuppose, Alien Sex Fiend have come up with a singles album, and never a group to do things by halves they’ve made sure that every track is the full-length 121n version, interminable versions of songs that would be boring and tormiess at any length. The one track that does benelil lrom this policy is the
earliest one: ‘lgnore The Machine’ is great mutant disco, but the remaining tracks are examples of the ongoing ASF guest of fashioning a silk purse from a sow’s ear.
- I )"s'W
Alien Se Fiend ‘
I Leonard Cohen: l’m Your Man (CBS). Laughln’ Len’s status as an object of ridicule for most under-thirties has pervaded far enough into the general consciousness for people who have never heard a Cohen record in their lives to hold him up as the despised godfather of the singer-songwriters, forever mumbling his way through another morbid dirge. ‘l’m Your Man’
continues the old Cohen tradition oi being a record guaranteed to clear the decks at parties, but the tastetul dabbling with synthesisers and dmm machines has proved an unexpected and agreeable triumph. Cohen's creaking, semi-comatose voice dominates the instrumentation, of course, its menace short~circulted by familiarity and touches of wry humour. Moreover, with such an emphasis on lyrics in his work, it’s both relieving and dispiriting to find that his skills as a wordsmith are better than most. ‘l’m Your Man’ should do a lotto deflate many of our contemporary songwriters, still labouring under the impression that they’re pretty hot stuff.
I The Shamen: llnature of a Girl (Moksha). Thelrlllth single, and something of a disappointment, being an off-colour love song with seriously psychedelic overtones. A perverse choice ot single: it’s not very hummable and its lurching heavy beat is particularly irksome. Shame, really. I The Meteors: Somebody Put Something in my Drink (Anagram). Psychobilly rendition oi that very Ramones song, a lot less faithful to the original than Sonic Youth’s rather pointless rendition oi da brudders’ ‘Beat on the Brat‘. 12in single comes with a version of ‘Bad Moon Rising’ too. -
I The Seers: Lightning Strikes (Rough Trade). There's an interesting _ rockabilly twang in the heart of this song, which is neither completely smothered by obvious immersion in the works of The Clash and other progenitors of gang mythologislng nor by kitchen sink (as in everything but) production which does do a pretty eiliclent job of covering up the rawness and enthusiasm that i imagine would make them a pretty good live band. (Mab)
LIVE REVIEW THE WOODE OPS
Oueen’s Hail, Edinburgh
The Woodentops’ records, even the pretty good new LP, ‘Wooden Foot Cops On The Highway’, have never really done them justice. On record, often tailing prey to the ‘Stop Making Sense’ syndrome ot marrying grooves and melodies ol equally little distinction, they are too hemmed in, too polite. Head ‘Top Rolo McGlnty needs to share his manic energy and boundless, naive enthusiasm for his music with an audience, and on tonight’s showing he has every reason to be enthusiastic. Live, his group’s collective energy is enormous and inlectlous, the express train drumming of Benny Staples providing the essential backbone. You wonder how they can get any more frantic, any more intense, and then in the climactic final passages of ‘Good Thing' they do. A rash statement perhaps, but The Woodentops are saving white funk from the blahs. (Mab) ,
I Outside Edge La Taniere, Fox Street. 221 4844. 9pm. Free.
I Future WOi'itl Moves Preservation Hall. Victoria Street, 226 3816. 9.30pm. Free. I The Perlstalsis Brothers Négociants. Lothian Street. 225 6313. 9pm. Free.
I The Secrets Music Box. Victoria Street, 220 1708. 9.30pm. Free.
I Willy Logan Canny Man's. Morningside Road. 447 1484. 8.30pm. Free.
I Gyroset Lord Darnley. West Port, 229 4341. 10pm. Free.
I Jewel Scheme Fixx Bar. 86 Miller Street. 9.30pm.
I The Marie Sinclair Band La Taniere, Fox Street. 221 4844. 9pm. Free.
I Tam White Negociants. Lothian Street, 225 6313. 9pm. Free. Edinburgh‘s great graveliy-voiced blues singer away from The Dexters.
I After Dark Music Box. Victoria Street, 220 1708. 9.30pm. Free.
I The Peristalsis Brothers Boston Bean Co. St James Centre. 5560111.8.30pm. Free.
I The Critter Hill Varmints Green Tree. (‘owgate Hillbilly-sounding quintet. no relation to Swamp Trash. Don't think so, anyway.
I Live band Blues Basement. Broughton Street. 556 7147.
I Live band Cavern. Cowgate. 2265641.
I Lothian Lord Darniey. West Port.229 4341. 10pm. Free.
THURSDAY 10 Glasgow
I Zodiac Mindwarp and The Love Reaction Barrowland Ballroom. 244 Galiowgate. Zode may well be the High Priest of Love, but you‘d never tell from his disappointingly tame records. Maybe the oily biker brigade should look towards the less backward-looking thrash-metal acts for the abandon that a Tattooed Beat Messiah should be capable of. But if they‘re just looking for an idealised reﬂection of themselves. why should they? I Giant and Heaven Sent Fury Murry's, 96 Maxwell Street. 221 651 1. Interesting double-header of promising local groups. I Yes Yes Juliette Halt Bar. Woodlands Road. 332 1210. 9.30pm. Free. Airypop with quite conspicuous Blondie and B-525 inﬂuences.
I Bo‘Weevil Riverside, Waddell Court, Gorbals. Rockin‘ blues. Residency every Thursday for the time being.
I Secession Venue. Calton Road.557 3073. Glasgow band warm up for their forthcoming gigs in the States (phew!) with what must be about their second-only live gig.
I The Dan Blocker Experience Negociants. Lothian Street, 225 6313. 9pm. Free. Broad range of country sounds.
I Block Brothers Preservation Hall. Victoria Street. 226 3816. 9pm. Free. New Thursday night residency.
I Band Competition Music Box. Victoria Street, 220 1708. 9pm. £1. Good line-up, well worth going along to see Big Blue World, Baby's Got a Gun. Close, The Indian Givcrs, Mr Robinson and G-Spot Tornado all in one place.
I Los Supremos Canny Man's. Morningside Road. 447 1484. 8.30pm. Free.
I Live band Blues Basement. Broughton Street, 5567147.
I Live band Cavern. Cowgate, 226 5641.
I Billy Jones Lord Darniey. Wcsi Port, 229 4341. 10pm. Free.
32 The List 4- 17 March 1988