Dancing penguins. Buxom girls with striped legs. Men dressed in pink body paint and boxers. You’d be forgiven for thinking that the Fringe has started early this year, but fortunately The Very’s guerrilla-style launch gig for their self-titled album oozes the kind of rock’n’roll attitude that most Fringe acts only dream of. Perching themselves on the small pyramid of steps outside the National Gallery, a portable generator chugging away behind Jake Miller’s drum kit, they waste no time in launching into a vibrant, polished and shockingly loud live set. Most of the album tracks are present and correct, as well as a handful of favourites from their back catalogue and a few new surprises. Before long a hundred-strong crowd has gathered, mostly hanging back on the fringes of the square but all entranced by Robin Von Blitz’s frenetic guitar style, even if their eyes occasionally stray to the scantily-clad dancers.
After an extended set that lasts almost an hour The Very finally leave their makeshift stage, Jake hurling his sticks out into the gathered bystanders. The square suddenly feels strangely empty and quiet, as council bin-men and besuited businessmen drift back to their everyday routines. Ahead of this year’s T In The Park The Very have brought a little piece of punk attitude to central Edinburgh. Maybe those dancing penguins weren’t so surreal after all ‘` today The Very looked effortlessly cool. (Dan Coxon)