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The Joy Formidable / Adwaith

Glasgow King Tut's Wah Wah Hut (Tuesday 12th February 2019)

By • Feb 14th, 2019 • Category: gig reviews

This evening was quite Welsh. It is worth remembering that this language is very much alive, and while Scottish Gaelic fights to gather new recruits, Welsh is a living language (BM will not forget her trip to North Wales a few years ago when she witnessed people having domestics in Welsh, in pubs, no cultural chin-stroking shit, it was what they spoke).

So anyway Adwaith are a three women (girls?) – (Hollie Singer, Gwenllian Anthony and Heledd Owen) lineup who sing in both English and Welsh and at least one of them has never been to Scotland before, but the crowd makes them very welcome.

They play tracks from debut album Melyn (all tracks are Welsh) plus some English language tracks like ‘On The Sofa’ and ‘Hey’, off a new EP. What strikes BM is that these lasses love playing together and are a bit of a gang. The lead singer has a playful way with her twanging guitar, the bassist is a bit nervous bit is calmed by the crowd, and they just rock, in their own slightly odd way, which is great! BM is not going down the comparisons route here but this lot have a lot of potential – enough said.

Headliners The Joy Formidable are now four albums in – they are a three piece, also from North-ish Wales, and they rock. Announced as the fourth act on the bill for the massive Cure gig in the summer, they did ask who was going to that. Certainly, Ritzy – vocals / guitars, Rhydian – bass and Matt – drums – will be at Bellalhouston Park.

They are heavy, some songs in Welsh and others in English, and possess the kind of firepower that classic three-piece bands have had over the years, BM was reminded of the early Cure, the powerpop of The Jam, with massive basslines.

The attack and energy of the music is palpable with the almost full crowd giving it a bit of reaction, not exactly moshing but some outbreaks of jumping… There were shoutouts for longterm fans who apparently made them ‘jammy dodgers’…

Standout tracks were ‘Don’t Want To See You Like This’, played early in the set, and BM could not help recalling both Biffy, and Vukovi, Scotch references and kindred spirits,

There is a lot of talent here, and they played ‘Sad Christmas’ track ‘My Beerdrunk Soul is Sadder Than A Hundred Dead Xmas Trees’, a mordant piece indeed…

Transport issues meant that BM missed the encore but safe to say that the Cure crowd (and BM will be among them) are in for a bit of a treat when the JF open that huge gig in August.

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