Glasgow: King Tut's, Sat 5 Aug.
‘What I was looking to do was to put together an act of credible musicians who had a similar vision,’ says Engine manager Martin Manley, describing the original premise behind Glasgow‘s newest sound. ‘Music isn‘t the only issue here, it's the attitude as well, and it‘s a career. Engine just want to perform, make people happy and enjoy themselves through music and performance.‘
Following their debut gig in November, where they played to 300 people at Manley‘s 'Ouch‘ club night at the Riverside Club, Engine's highly eclectic, soulful dance fusion has steadily been delivered to the masses, with the band‘s EP ‘First Gear' garnering major label interest and frequent radio airplay. The key to their rapid success seems to be the freshness of the concept: five qualified musicians playing unique music in a club scenario, with nary an ego to be seen.
Manley certainly knows how Engine keeps purring: 'T he band is about musical synergy, about realising that it is the sum of the parts, and not about any one person. I‘m blessed that I've found people that have that attitude, even though it’s taken a long time.’
The band, combining the diverse vocal talents of Kathleen Sheridan, Nordin Zaoui and guitarist Willie Hitchell with Stephen Gardiner’s guitars and Rick Jones‘s drums, seem to have been well worth the wait. There's a charged, infectious enthusiasm about what they‘re doing and where they're going, ‘The worldl’, insists
Engine undoubtedly have a tiger in their tank
(Jan F. Zeschky)
‘I think we've hit on something that people are ready for‘, continues Manley, a surefire graduate of PR school. ‘At an Engine gig you‘ll see things on stage that’ll make the hairs on the back of your neck stand up. Their performance is like a gift to the audience. It's not an amateur thing, it's professional musicians putting everything into their job.’
The purpose behind Engine is undeniable, so much so that puns as bad as ‘finely-tuned‘ and 'welI-oiled‘ probably wouldn‘t even faze them. So don‘t worry about what‘s under the hood, just let it drive you.
They are the resurrection, they are The Rising
ROCK/ POP The Rising Glasgow: King Tut's, Fri 4 Aug.
As metaphors go, the name of former Shed Seven guitarist Paul Banks’ new band is a gift. The Rising is, as you might have guessed, the phoenix that has risen from the embers of both the
Sheds and the Seahorses, otherwise known as York's finest (if you choose to omit the Manc rock interference of John Squire). So what happened? ’You’ll have to ask them about that, I left a week before Christmas, did my last show on 10 December at Shepherd's Bush and that was me gone,’ says Banks. He has no regrets
about his departure from his previous outfit. ’How far can you take something? I enjoyed the experience but its like any kind of relationship, you eventually don’t find it attractive anymore. I mean I was the last one in, l was writing all the songs but writing to order because it wasn’t my band.’
Banks has reunited himself with his old pal Stu Fletcher, former Seahorses bassist (The Horses having also gone for a Burton). Also in the band are Maxi from Audioweb on drums and a new Glaswegian singer David McKellar. 'We placed an advert for a singer and we got hundreds of tapes. We got this one in a shoddy brown envelope and it had this little voice singing back to us — we got him in and after a few songs we knew he was the one.’ Banks describes the music as ’big grooves with Zeppelin riffs over the top. Everyone is so desperate for a band to come out that makes you feel cool again, know what I mean?’ Unsigned at the moment, The Rising have been concentrating on their live performances but plan to start recording an album in September. Banks is merrily confident: ’lt's going really well mate, it just needed to be fresh for me because the Sheds got so stale.’ (Paul Dale)
Wilt *‘k‘k‘k Lights H
Pupkin *ttk Glasgow: Kinngut's, Sat 22 Jul.
The our mem ers of Glasgow’s Pupkin stride on-stage, simultaneously cock their legs up and pee over their surrounding amps and drumkit. The audience stare jaw-dropped in stunned silence. It's quite an entrance. Sorry, the opening paragraph isn’t strictly true in any, um, factual sense. Nevertheless, by every course of action practicable, Pupkin do manage to mark their own territory with a self-effacing prescription of bracing songs which exude mastery and an eye for the undervalued goal of widescreen appeal. Despite such stately indie-rock clamour, reports of random members of the crowd streaking in jubilation remain as yet unconfirmed.
Condole with middle of the bill and inescapany middling Lights. The question you haven’t yet asked is why would a gargantuan corporate hustler like Sony want to follow such marketing wet dreams as the PlaystationTM and MiniDiscTM by putting their logo behind a band who sound like the musical equivalent of pins and needles (hello Gomez). The twisted oddity is that singer Anthony Cunningham accomplishes the wretched feat of impersonating a// three Gomez vocalists throughout astuter titled new single, ’Doom'. We have Lights, yet we have no action.
That is, until Wilt. It really is quite incongruous after Lights but this Dublin trio have fine-tuned a euphonic flavoUr of spunk-rock, and with the seeds sewn by the likes of ’lt's All Over Now' and ‘Radio Disco’, they induce a small and imperfectly-formed mosh- pit. Although frontman Cormac Battle’s (ex-Kerbdog) point of vision through his NHS specs initially gazes above his band's devotees, the focus of the gig is unavoidably on those who have now taken to the air in a daring attempt to crowdsurf in the modest confinement of King Tut's. As the show comes to a close, it all gets too much for Cormac, as he hurls himself unguardedly into the crowd, still frisking his guitar whilst being propelled over the heads of Wilt's ardent aficionados. The stunt may have temporarily lost him his glasses, but it permanently seals Wilt's reputation as the most enthralling of live acts. (Jason Cranwell)
Wilt pit their wits against the Glasgow
3—10 Aug 2000 THE U812: