Festival Theatre, Edinburgh, Sun 10 Feb

Pop gigs are weird. Tonight the pre- pubescent girls who dominate the audience spend more time shrieking than they do listening. and as long grinning at their friends as they do staring at the stage. as if to affirm that they are both present at an event of this magnitude.

The first surprise of the evening comes when Victoria Beckham swans onstage to plug her Current single. and actually sings instead of rust performing. And. as befits her new status as a Serious Artist ino gratuitous t'n'a tonrghti. she doesn't do a bad rob. Suggesting she may even still have a record contract this time next year.

Most of the evening is a blur of l)llfllll|‘~.0 sexuality. slick dance routines and 80s cover verSions. allSTARS' dancing isn't even all that smooth. and therr th’CISlOll while performing 'Is There Something l Should Know' to mess ‘.'.’llll one of the greatest 'yrics in muSical infamy i'You're about as easy as a nuclear war" becomes 'as easy as you were before'i hardly helps their case.

Bellefire are next up. domg UQ's 'All I Want ls You. The (Illéilli‘, -rn aid of Help A Childi night's rapid descent into cabaret iGllliOl‘, is hardly he'ped by the between show banter. from which you can deduce that everyone here has something to pror‘iote.


Community education by the People



King Tut's, Glasgow, Mon 11 Feb .00.

equally as full of quality. conscentious and feelgood rhymes as any of their brothers.

Inevitany the live show is more stripped down and feisty than the outfits excellent recent album . the chilled Expansion Team, with all three members. espeCrally Evidence. working the distinctly blunt-fuelled crowd perfectly. And wrth a whole heap of early material thrown in. like the bOuncing mayhem of ‘Ear Drums Pop' and the near pandemonium of breakthrough track 'Work The Angles'. the whole sweaty atrnOSphere in Tut's

The very ‘ordinary’ Aurora

Hang on a minute. What's this? A hip nop gig with a real. bona fide LA rap crew on stage . . . and no dissing”? No slaggrng of l‘rp hop coritemporarres’? No gun toting. goid-charn wearing. chest-puffing macho travado’? Must be Dilated Peoples then. The three- st'ong crew o‘ eritcees. Evidence and Rakaa with DJ Babu on the wheels of steel. follow in the footsteps of their illustrious west coast compadres such

everyone is 'reallg. excited” and that [Ms as The Roots and Jurassc :3 |.'l terms was a perfect example of how skilled should never take the stage exce )3 of right-on beats. While their soond music can create a real community

isn't quite as expanswe as those ‘orerunners. t'ie Dilated Peoples vibe .8

Spirit. despite how yucky that SOunds. iDoug Johnstone)

Grant Stott. but he's done par‘toi.

The r‘ion-appearance of Misteeg s compensated by co~presenters Paul and Mark of A1. who sing a bit of A Ha. It goes down well. but not as well as surprise guest Darius. who contents his status as this century's >cp ri‘ess'ah with


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a barel, audblt. perfarrna. ict, or ciaot. Stud“) 24, Edmburgh’ wed 6 Feb Riddance time Of Your t r‘e‘ by. Green

Day. The festival theatre erupts. It's at so At Long last some good news for lovers exciting you could be forginen for of 'ive fl‘tlSiCI a rare sighting of a venue

forgetting Tippi's shiny MDR. Pop Stars' that is actually opening not closing. So l'OJOCl Warren Stacey's srr‘oot'i nae and turbos first to grace the stage as Studio Aurora's adetiuate coxer o" “Ordinary. 2.1 is reclairr‘ed as a giggers paradise? \r‘iJorld'. the stars of the shovx’? Duran Last rr‘inute subst tute Dry Riser play a Duran stupid. dairies Smart. blend of wayward indie of the Pixies '\.'ariet\,. They’re a bit too controlled and over earnest to be the raw eir‘otiortal experience they crave to be. but it's a good start. Roguestar are desperately in search of a stadium for their polished rock anthems.

A1 come off the bench

ELECTRONICA POP SOUANDER PILOTS 13th Note Cafe, Glasgow, Thu 31 Jan 0000

Big Hand

But :' the confines of Studio 2-1 their super slick rock poses and acoustic sections corite across wrth a slight whiff of cynicisrrt. Get them a support slot with Ben Jovr and everyone ‘.'.’lll be happy.

Headliners. Big Hand. surely the hardest working band in Edinburgh. launch a full on Latino-ska assault. Their well aimed trumpet blasts. deadly rollicking beats and l'll-(XlllOtlS lyrics causing a mass outbreak of pork-pie hats a-go-go. Sounding tight as only a band that gigs almost every week can, its hard to tell who's having more fun il‘.(3ll‘ or us. If you didn't leave Sll‘lllllg. you must be dead. Or deaf. (Henry Northmorel

The Sguanders are up against 't. It's bad enough that singer Donna is recovenng from flu. wrthout the PA playing tip. There's no gerng back. however: after four years together they're finally launching their debut single. ‘Sguanders one. technology nrl.‘ they gleefzily announce jUSl before things fall apart in another stttiall of norse. The setind is varied and complex. Their tiuieter moments are better Dido. bit when their electronic box of tricks kicks |-'l. the beats are as big as they come. Eventually the band triumph over adversity. delivering a chilling verszon of single. 'Given'. The next four years should be plain sailing. iStuart lvchughi

Ticket information: Tickets for most medium/large concerts can be bought from the following:

Glasgow: Virgin Buchanan Galler es. 4531’ ~1-Z~i)(} - Credit card bookings from: licket Link: 287 53:31 1 8. Way Ahead: 3139 8383 - Ripping Records South Bridge. 926 f't‘itt) - Way Ahead 0141 (3:39 8:383

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* Tomahawk (iai‘agc. (iltixgim'. ll Mar.

Edinburgh: Virgin Princes Street. 270 L‘II/‘i-‘Y-

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I Billy Bragg & The Blokes l'xhcr llilll. lidiiiburgh. lo .\lar.

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I Biffo Clyro Liquid Room. l5 .\l;ii'; King

'l'ut‘x (ilaxgim. lh .\l;ir. I Decapitated ('zitliotisc. (ilaxgim. 17 Mar.

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I Weezer liai‘i'tmland. (ilasgim. 30 Matt”.

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I Rod Stewart Sli('('. (ilasgow. 33 & 33 Jun.

I Aimee Mann Liquid Ronni. lidiiihurgli. (3 Jul.

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Glasgow, 15 Sup.

98 let) PUD? THE LIST 47