This certainly takes the prize so far anyway for 2023’s most unusual venue for a gig.
Goals is a 5-a-side football pitches complex and the event took place in the bar/function area. On a Saturday night most potential footballers are in the pub so the pitches themselves were in the dark as punters arrived through the Pollokshaws Rd entrance of Queen’s Park. A low stage had been built and a sound and lights system deployed for this gig by Southside Glasgow’s answer to Erasure. Paul and Stephen have been on the go for some time in other bands but this Scaramanga project caught BM’s attention a couple of years ago and they have played a few gigs since lockdown eased.
Essentially Paul sings while Stephen does keyboards, electric and physical drums and other sound effects. Tonight they played probably the longest set that BM has witnessed, in front of an enthusiastic crowd with the dancing starting fairly early on and getting more frantic towards the end. The combination of the (as usual) bekilted Paul’s operatic and expressive singing and Stephen’s catchy, at times complex, at other times more like rave anthems, is what really gives this outfit the edge, along with the addition of female vocals at times on some the later tracks by Suzanne and Vivienne.
Starting with earlier singles ‘Live Your Life’ and ‘Simple Love’, the 13 track set built up with several brand new tracks like ‘Will You Stay’, ‘The Light’ and ‘Hold You Near’. The dramatic Vivienne-fronted ‘On And On’ was followed by Paul taking vocals again on ‘Play In Paris’.
After a dedication to an old friend and musical colleague, the set ended with a gloriously funked-up cover version of Pink Floyd’s ‘Welcome to the Machine’ which almost brought the place down – the only disadvantage of this venue is that it’s is up a flight of stairs, which after a few refreshments and a bit more dancing (DJs La Roche Rumba continued the night with some disco and alternative bangers from across the decades) it was a bit tricky for some of the audience to get down those stairs!