Queen Margaret Union. Glasgow. 18 Feb.

Seeing Pavement live is like making that long overdue trip to visit your eccentric neighbours with the overgrown garden and discovering they're not that different after all; theyjust keep lots of budgies and don't get out often enough.

The new Pavement album ‘Crooked Rain. Crooked Rain‘ is three parts Steve Malkmus‘s mischievous songwriting talents to one part the rest of the band wilfully messing things up in the studio. and it looks that way on stage too fine- featured college boy lovittgly working his guitar while his dorky mates bob around like orang-utans. showering ineptitude on his pliable compositions. But before the deluge. the ideal suppons...

AC Acoustics deal itt angular noise too. but they play their cards closer to their chests. liven their occasional ennui (not much in evidence tonight) is tightly orchestrated. They‘re a testament to the virtues of taking live years to get it just right.

The tribute band phenomenon continues with Rollerskate Skinny. art apposite. wacky name for a band who toyed with The Irish Mercury Rev but rejected it because it was too obviously in keeping with the blatattcy of their rip-off. Actually. there are moments in their too-long set where they surpass their US mentors in thrilling off-the-wall spacey oddities. but also in time-filling tedium. They lose the plot. find it. then tnisplace it again too often to keep their target audience tuned itt.

Pavement too should rein in their tendency to ramble. There's nothing entertaining about watching potentially great hooklines sink into a directionless quagmire. It's worse when there‘s no real song to speak of (‘Stop Breathing). But there‘s the goofy charm with which Pavement elevate the trivial (like current single ‘Cut Your Hair" their simplistic eulogy to being iii a band attd ‘on the scene' ) which expunges the sin of underachievement. ‘Trigger (‘ut' keeps ‘Slanted and linchantcd' disciples sweet. and ‘Silence Kit‘ with its equal plagiarism of Deep Purple (riff) and Buddy Holly (melody) hopefully points the way forward. Or maybe sideways. (Fiona Shepherd)

L_..2 _.

32 The List 25 February ‘10 Marclt 199-1


Venue, Edinburgh, 17 Feb.

The ticket said doors open 7pm, first

artist onstage 7.30pm. Eight o’clock

came and went and the only ‘punters’

who were inside The Venue were me

and three others who’d got in on the

guest list. By the time Misty Oldland

skipped onstage, four paying punters

had squeezed into the arena; it was

hardly enough to buy her six-piece

band a round of drinks. ‘This is a very

intimate gig,’ she proclaimed, pigtails

flying everywhere. ‘Everybody Share,’

. ran one of the songs. Yep, I could have

bought a bag a crisps, handed it

around the audience and still had half

I a bag left.

On a semi-serious note, it does raise

the question of why bands should

I come to Scotland at all. Maybe it was just one of those nights where

1 everybody had the painters in; it

clashed with ‘Absolutely Fabulous’; it

i wasn’t publicised well enough (the

é glue on the posters was still drying as I walked past it on the way to the gig);

soul-funk is of course a london thang

and we will not be dictated to by the

Metropolis. For one night, London did

1 invade Edinburgh and we gladly put up no resistance.

Birrovashame, though, for both acts are talented, and gelled well to provide an interesting show as far as

the parameters allowed. Oldland has a quality soul voice and her band work slinklly as a unit in time with her beliefs about sexuality and the environment. Is this girl Jamiroquai’s sister? It mlghtn’t be a bad thing. As to Freakpower, oh, how the mighty have fallen in the shape oi Herman Cook. One-time Housemartin and darling of ‘Smash Hits’; one-time number one Beats Internationalist and darling oi ‘Golng lee’; now, apparently loved by no one. Pity that, as this new line-up is quite imaginative. Happy keyboards meet Heinrich Himmler, fly-beats, twinkling percussion and the cheeky guitar oi Cook. An enjoyable pop-funk set was Bobbitted in its prime to make way for l pseudo-trendy club Tribal Funktion. Hell, it was just one oi those nights. Philip Oorward)

‘I 1!"

Freak Power

Tramway, Glasgow, until Sat 26 (not Fri 25). The Tramway has been described as one of the most exciting performance spaces in Europe. It is only fitting, then, that our national opera company, one of Europe’s most exciting perionning forces, should from time to time perform there. From their first main-scale visit, with Benjamin Britten’s ‘Turn Of The Screw’, Scottish Opera are to be admired for their flexibility of approach, open- mindedness and great skill in choosing an opera that fits what The Tramway has to offer.

Their success does not end there though, for David Levaux’s production, his first for the company, is one which examines Britten’s opera with provocative clarity. There is a fairly stark set - a lean-to conservatory wall with wrought-iron spiral staircase, a black pond to the back, bark-strewn floor and odd bits of furniture. The costumes are contemporary with

. Henry James’s late 19th century story


Concerts listed are those at major venues, for which tickets are on public sale at time of going of press.


I GLASGOW BARRDWLAND (226 4679) Stiff Little Fingers. 17 Mar; Soul Asylum. 19 Mar; The Wonder Stuff, 24 Mar; Primal Scream. 2 Apr; Soundgarden. 11 Apr; The Beautiful South. 15 Apr; Lloyd Cole. 7 May; Elvis Costello. 14 Jul.


HALL(227 5511) Elkie i Brooks. 16 Apr; Bonnie

Raitt. 6 Jun.


(332 1846) Blues Brothers Tribute. 11 Mar; Midge Ure. 12 Mar; Queen Tribute. 13 Mar; Magnum. 9 Apr; Toyah.

17 Apr.

I GLASGOW SECC (248 9999) Motown Road Show. 14 Apr; Go West. 14 May; Phil Collins. 1—2 Dec.


Blues Brothers Tribute.

12—13 Mar; Deacon Blue. 22 Apr; David Lee Roth. 4 Ma .

Y I EDINBURGH QUEEN’S f HALL (668 2019) Kristin

Hersh. 31 Mar; Bitty

. McLean. 15 Apr.


and it’s all rather darkly coloured, but changes cleverly to create quite different ambiences of space as the opera unfolds. Away from the conventional theatre, there is also an unusual sense of intimacy with what is. happening. The pitless instrumentalists are highly visible and their skill, under conductor Timothy Lole, in bringing Britten’s score to fruition, is one of this production’s greatest strengths, although the closeness of sound was overbearing for the children’s voices of Miles and Flora.

The music is fortunate though to be in the hands of singers such as Anne Williams-King as the ever-so-English governness, Philip Salmon as Quint and Menai Davies as Mrs Grose. Subsequent performances may bring heightened intensity between the relationships, both with the living and , with the dead, and a more gripping sense of the supernatural than was present on opening night. (Carol Main)

I EDINBURGH USHER HALL (228 1155) Solid Silver 60s. 31 Mar.

f JAZZ I GLASGOW CONCERT 3 HALL (227 5511) In the Mood. 18 Mar.

I EDINBURGH QUEEN’S HALL (668 2019) Danish Radio Big Band. 11 Mar; Cauld Blast Orchestra. 18 Mar; Dee Dee

Bridgewater. 25 Mar:

Candy Dulfer.-1 May; McCoy Tyner. 20 May.


HALL (228 1155) In the Mood. 17 Mar.



(332 1846) Foster and

Allen. 7 Apr.


HALL (668 2019) Cauld

Blast Orchestra. 18 Mar. I EDINBURGH USHER

HALL (228 1155)The Dubliners. 19 Mar.


I GLASGOW CONCERT HALL (227 551 1) Caribbean Ceilidh. 20 Mar; Hollywood and Broadway 11. 3 Apr; Elkie Brooks. 16 Apr; Howard Keel. 3 May; Shirley Bassey. 19 Sept.

I GLASGOW PAVILION (332 1846)]oe Longthome. 23—26 Mar; Music of James Last. 23 Apr; Sydney Devine. 16—19 Nov.

I EDINBURGH USHER HALL (228 1155) Don Williams. 22 Mar;

Dominic Kinvan. 8 May.


I GLASGOW CITY HALL (227 5511) Mozart Requiem. 20 Mar.

I GLASGOW CONCERT HALL (227 5511) Moscow $80. 14 Mar: Stars of the Bolshoi Opera. 13—14 Apr; BPO Wind Qnt. 21 Apr; Choral Spectacular. 5 Jun.

3 I cuscow nsmo (332

5057) SEMC. 11 Mar; Glasgow Wind Band. 12 Mar; SU Wind Band. 13 Mar; Academy CO. 17 Mar; Leda Trio. 18 Mar;

Soundstrata. 18 Mar;

GCO. 19 Mar; Paragon. 20 Mar; ROI.

Prizewinners. 28 Mar; Medici Qrt. 30—31 Mar;

BTSE. 15 Apr.

I EDINBURGH QUEEN’S HALL (668 2019) Endellion Qt. 21 Mar; Paragon. 22 Mar; ECAT.

' 30 Mar; BTSE. 17 Apr;

ECAT. 28 Apr: King‘s

; Consort. 7 May; Meadows

CO. 15 May.

, I someun'ctt usnsn

HALL (228 1155) Stars of the Bolshoi ()pera. 5 Apr; ERCU. 7 May.

I SUBSCRIPTION SEASONS Programme details and tickets for RSNO. SCO. BBC SSO and CGPO concerts are available from Ticketcentre. Glasgow (227 5511); lislter Hall. lidittbtti'g111228 1155); Queen's Hall. Edinburgh (668 2019). Tickets for Scottish Opera from Theatre Royal. Glasgow (332 9000); King's Theatre. Edinburgh (229 1201 ).

Kristin Hersh