MUSIC LIVE REVIEWS
Manchester Roadhouse, 21 Sept Can’t say I envy the task of singer- songerwriters. Aspiring pop stars usually dream of fronting a cool, history making band as opposed to fronting a crew of strageg haired bass players and pony-tailed drummers. Solo outings - unless you’re specifically cutting it on the folk circuit or busking in the success of Alanis Morissette - are often a last resort, when the ideas and inspiration, as well as other career options, have long dried up. Mundy, then, has the difficult task of making it as a troubled troubadour, let alone making it interesting. But, hey, it’s fun watching him try.
In some quarters, Mundy is touted as the new Bob Dylan. From where I’m standing - about halfway, sardine style - he looks like the new Andy White: fatty denim jacket, dishevelled black hair with his neck craning skywards, liam style. Thankfully the folk trappings are largely left behind, Mundy has the good sense to look further afield to bring us on his side. Sure, acoustic strums make their appearance, but are over shadowed by some seriously terrific, strobe-light guitar. llobody mentioned that Mundy shimmered and buzzed like Spiritualized on a hot day, perfect for a tiny club rammed to the roof.
Don’t get any wrong ideas, ‘the song’ has not been forsaken in favour of journeys into sound, though it’s clearly benefited from a few added frills. This is one songwriter who isn’t in awe of the singer-songwriter muse, whereby nothing should get in the way of those all important ‘words.’ At his best Mundy has The Waterboys in his sights, particularly the Mike Scott pronouncement of ‘starrrrs’, if not sounding quite so awe-struck. At his worst Mundy brings to mind Cast and their lead-booted epic, ‘Sandstorm’ (though not very often). An intriguing star sailor, waiting to be a shooting one. (lleil Davenport)
Mundy supports Bast, livingston, Tue 15.
I who saw You?
see page 96.
Glasgow Royal Concert flail, 27 Sept. It’s a mite hard to believe that the Blue llile haven’t stepped onto a stage for half a decade. In front of an enrapt lloyal Concert llall throng, the band produce a performance that demonstrates that they haven’t been sitting on their laurels for the last five years. The material from their latest and third album Peace At Last is greeted with mere ecstasy compared to the orgiastic acclaim for the old classics such as ‘Downtown Lights’, ‘Tinseltown In The llain’ and ‘Easter Parade’.
To hear the product of Paul Buchanan’s tonsils reverberate around a packed hall is a genuinely moving experience, underpinned by the naturally raw emotion of the songs. Could it be that this man owns one of the finest white voices of his generation? Surer so, and anyone who disagrees can meet me round the back later.
For someone who claimed that nerves were getting the better of him, Buchanan fields the between-song banter from the audience with aplomb. The range of topics runs from his weight (or lack thereof), Rosanna Arquette (‘you must be from the Daily Record), to suggestions that they should do this for a living and numerous requests, including about
twenty for ‘Sentimental Man’, despite its appearance in the first ten minutes. And, hey, he even has the good taste to namedrop The list.
Despite rumours that the three-piece was whittling down to eventually become a solo project, the presence of Robert Bell on bass and Paul
, Joseph Moore on keys is a strong
reminder that the Blue llile is definitely a team game. At times Moore plays like a man possessed and at the end glances up to the family gallery and pats his heart. For all three, as Buchanan noted earlier, this has been a test. As one audience member assures them, they’ve passed. (Brian Donaldson)
SLINGBACKS/JDYRIDER Venue, Edinburgh, 30 Sept.
Even before Bob Marley appeared on an [F sleeve dragging on the mother of all jau cigarettes, smoking was one of the musician’s traditional leisure pursuits. Ilp there with deploying TV sets for the sole purpose of testing the laws of gravity, and ill-advised experiments with facial hair. And as the sprightly “Yet Another Skunk Song’ demonstrates, Joyrider know their own vice well.
Along with some wicked self- deprecation and enough bounce in their performance to rival any West Indian fast bowler you care to mention, this llorthern Irish bunch have a knack for the teen angst anthem that puts them in much the same bracket as the more feted Placebo. ‘Driving In The Rush Hour’, their biggest hit to date, may approximate Bon Jovi in a traffic jam but do not be fooled, Joyrider have more hooks than Peter Pan’s nemesis fucked up their sleeves.
Joyrider dispense with niceties, opting for the play ’em fast and leave ’em reeling school of Showmanship. And it works. ‘All Done Away’ and ‘Vegetable Animal Mineral’ are just the kind of derriére-kicking numbers that Bob Mould or Frank Black used to knock off in their lunch hour. Result, the boys down the front do the mosh potato and even the previously disdainful girls practising their Bette Davis cool look impressed.
On a quite different footing, if you please, support group the Slingbacks conjure up the spirit of everyone from
Slade and The (lo-Go’s through The llamones to The Posies. The new single, ‘All Pop, llo Star’, is a gloriously funny glam-slam-shang-a- Iang stompathon that leaves you doing the Oliver Twist - please more, sir - while singer-guitarist Shireen, a charming lA emigree of no fixed hair
colour, comes across like Courtney love with jokes.
Ears ringing, hormones singing, the kids gambol home with glee positively scribbled all over their daisy-like faces. A hum drum Monday night affair? llot tinnitis, Josephine. (Rodger Evans)
42 The List 4- l 7 Oct I996