ROCK Foo Fighters Glasgow: Barrowland, 24 May *‘k‘k
Redd Kross make all the right moves — for 1990 — it’s a pity they and the mainstream have been movrng inexorably towards each other, taking away the band's bite in the process. For an instant, there’s a glimpse of what looks like a Blue Oyster Cult logo on the back of the guitarist‘s axe, and Redd Kross's life, and eventual fate, flashes before our eyes.
For contrast, Just look to tonight’s headliners, whose eminently saleable musrc barrelled towards the heart of corporate dick-sucking ’Alternative Rock’ and came out the other srde smiling. Amidst an incredible barrage of clothing propelled their way by the crowd, Foo Fighters played like a
band that's got the world in their hands and know it With Dave Grohl leading frOm the front, grinrnng dopin between lines, belching and even stopping ’This Is A Call’ to blow his nose on his shirt, they cover all the bases. Pat Smear even makes a valiant attempt to make red V-neck T- shirts cool. For approxrmately half the time, they’re a power quartet wrenching their guts out With screaming, hardcore-edged monsters, the rest of the gig they're showing off their agility, slipping between the varied styles of the tracks on new album, The Colour And The Shape. Their current live prowess, and the more-than-worthy follow-up to their debut, mark Foo Fighters out as an all—purpose and probably all- conquering band for 97.
ROCK Su er Furry Animalsl To yo
Edinburgh Venue, 23 May *ir ***
That Tokyo is sushi, neon clad skyscrapers, Godzilla misbehavrng, and some bloke called Joe. This Tokyo are a techno punk trio invoking Kraftwerk and Underworld; and if Danny Boyle is after a killer soundtrack for his next cinematic adventure, he need look no further. Tokyo appear to be sponsored by The Spice Girls and Felix The Cat, they make one helluva block-rockin' stramash, and they ought to reside in a land of hyperbolic superlatives. Like the headliners, they actually come from Wales — apparently no longer a crime. Last time Super Furry Animals played in these parts (Glasgow Garage), they were lacklustre, diffident, on distinctly wonky form. Tonight they are eyes-on- the-prize brilliant with magic tricks to spare. And a hoaching Venue is Mosh City, waving lollipops and vying for the most incoherent heckle of the night. Singer Gruff Rhys will not be put off though. 'Calm down a bit,’ he counsels, before discoursing on his specialist Subjects: snake charmers, pot noodles, and magic scissors which make your hair longer. Why, of c0urse. The current single 'Herman Loves Pauline' is perhaps definitive Super Furries, a splendid if off-kilter pop song in a semi-psychedelic vein. Imagine The
50 THE UST 30 May~l? Jun 1997
Beach Boys havrng a spat With Neil Diamond. The new songs are like the old songs only more so. ’If You Don't Want Me To Destroy You' and 'God Show Me Magic’ are manna from heaven served on a platter wrth silver service. Delectable, but sadly there are no seconds. After a blinding (literally v- a strobe frenzy) ’The Man Don't Give A Fuck’, it transpires the band are not going to indulge us by way of an encore.
Shame. But a churlish grumble over a spectaCUIar gig. Maybe it’s all down to mind control. As Gruff choruses on ’Herman Loves Paulrne’, ’We have ways of making you think'. Oh, yes. Super Furry Animals: the best band in the world this week, next week, and gurte conceivably the week after that (Rodger Evans)
ROCK Fiona Apple Glasgow: King Tut's, Sun 18 May 1t ** ‘k Ever noticed how all the sexy words begin wrth ’S': sultry, soulful, smokey, sensual, sensuous, sensitive. They could all be applied to Fiona Apple. The eighteen-year-old New Yorker has a voi(e that seiirids as though it’s been around since the blues were bom, resonant with a deep richness and aching With intensity. Smouldering her way through a set of torch songs, revenge fantasies and eulogies for lost loves, Apple puts in an intimate perfomarice, laying bare her emotions With a brutal honesty
live reviews MUSIB
that would leave most Brits looking distinttly llll((‘vllli‘()-'l.ll.‘l(‘ Off the wall asides between songs leaven the atrriosphere With a sheik of lllllll’Hil liii who needs laughs when heartbreak can be so enjoyable?
Alternating between stints on the grand piano and numbers spent swaying at the microphone, Apple exudes stage presence. How many hits gigs have you been to where no one talks during songs? lilost lilely to blah, blah, blah
ROCK E2io Edinburgh: La Belle Arigele, Sun 18 May * * * st sir
Known to many only as the 'unknown folk duo' who made the headlines when a certain Tony Blair chose one of therr songs on Desert Island Discs, Cambridge-based E7ro warrant attention for plenty of better reasons The ’folk’ tag is a major misnomer for a start this is a fully-fledged, two- man rock 'n' roll band, belting out mean 'n’ dirty, lost 'n’ lonesome, horny ’n’ hungry songs borne on a magnificent, masterful backing bllt? that's all the more [)lH-‘llOlltPlllil for being produred on two atoustir gurtars
It was a small band of indie-know devotees who gathered for their debut Edinburgh headliner, but E/io responded to the enthusiasm rather than the numbers, and rewarded it V/lIll a show few will forget iii a hurry
There were bitiised, brooding Vignettes of urban anomie an'l soured rrt-marir'e, full of textural contrast and big hooky tunes, spliirng intensity wrth understatement. Singer, lyrrr'ist and rhythm guitarist F/io luriedei's raggedly passionate vorals were strung out over Booga l‘owell's epir yet astonishingly
intricate lead arrangements
all sharply syiitopated (ross rhythms, danlrng
harmony flourishes and middle eights of a vrr'tuositv to rival (lassital (aderizas
Prime Minister in Impetcable lvlLlSK Taste Sher: ker
The Warm Jets
Glasgow: The Arches, Mon 19 May
‘k i' at They're not hot, but they’re not tepid either. They’re warm, as in hunt-the- thimble 'am | getting warm7' warm. But then they've had years of practice to reach that getting-there stage, unlike their buddies Tiger, wrth whom they share a certain maverick streak. Tiger threw together their endearineg lop-sided sound in a matter of months, but wrth the Warm lets you can tell there's been a fair degree of honing.
This (ould explain why such a
potentially inventive gurtar band can have a really blunt impart at times, seeming to suffer from the support band malady of terminal underathievemerit If you’ve
heard the recorded Warm lets ou’ll know their nerv idios/ritras Y Y )
« it's an itrh
you’ve got to scratch. But not live. Even rerent single ’Never Never’ sounds like yer average frenetic indie iangle when it could have been a surreal trip
It's the same story throughout their set
nothing so linear or obvrous as a pop
song but no charisma to charge the atmosphere Unsurprisiiigly, headliners The Wannadies, who run the gamut from perky to feisty still (OHIO out on top by Virtue of their belief in the punch of their songs. r“.laybe someone rust needs to tell the Warm Jets how good they (ould be. (Fiona Shepherd)