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Gig review gig reviews (Scottish)

We Rock Like Girls Don’t/Ruth Martin/Miss The Occupier/Scragfight

Due to the tendency towards tea-time gigs in this city, we arrive at the venue to the sounds of a awfully ramshackle reading of Rockaway Beach. This is courtesy of Scragfight, a local punker trio enjoying their first live foray. And, boy, does it show.

But, among the false starts and bum notes, there’s definitely something interesting going on. There’s a song called War Crimes for which the drummer takes the lead vocal, lending it a smashing shouty-pop sensibility. But then, there’s a cover of Tiffany‘s I Think We’re Alone Now, which they fail to really bring anything new to the original, or even the (not that hilariously ironic even 20 years ago) Snuff version. Closer Zombie Girl (I think) is fantastic. Definitely suggesting a band that will warrant further attention in the future.

So, as rough and ragged as a poachers breeks, but there’s some thing about Scragfight that is ultimately rather charming. However, I suspect this is pretty much as far from their intentions as you can get.

Miss The Occupier are fantastic. It’s as simple as that. Even the somewhat lacklustre sound (which almost makes us suspect maybe Scragfight weren’t so shaky) can’t detract from that.

With the smashing debut album Recovery Position finally under their belt, we get yet another set of effortless edgy pop. Punk. Rock. Pop. It’s hard to pinpoint them. This is half the joy of the band. The other being you don’t really want to. Sop thinking about it and just go with the flow.

Guitarist Magnus Hughson is on crackling form. He’s definitely shaping up to be one of the most interesting and original musicians in Glasgow. Managing to be both angular and soaring at almost the same time. Great stuff.

All that and a particularly spirited version of Girlfriend Go Crazy (a personal favourite), what more do ou need? Someone should give them tons of money, so we can all start bitching about them.

Next a solo set from Ruth Martin, lead singer with Scragfight. Which you wouldn’t believe were it not for the fact hat she’s very obviously the same person. And, well, she’s a singer songwriter type with an acoustic guitar. About the most interesting thing she does is highlight that fact that when covering certain songs, changing the odd pronoun can tip the balance o near murdering them. It’s sadly all very dull. Sadly, because there’s some cracking songs in there. Just the delivery is so pedestrian, familiar. She should shove a rocket up them and give them to the band. That might be something to see.

Vas Antoniadou, drummer with We Rock Like Girls Don’t is a rock behemoth. An open handed demi-godess of the skins. Seriously, she picks up her sticks and Thor slopes off. Yet, with an astounding subtlty. She adds more flourish and flair to one roll than most thumpers manage in a lifetimes work. Frankly breathtaking. And worth the price of entry alone.

And brilliantly, that’s not even the half of it. Up front we have Roz Cairney. Yeah. In the beginning there was the riff; then there was Roz. I have no idea hat the hell she’s playing through, but the guitar is like a wall. You know when scientists do that stuff where you can listen to glaziers or mountains. This is what you expect to be the results. If the soundman’s been slacking tonight, he can’t help but wake up now. And, with a voice like a not-annoying PJ, she can be both terrifying and deeply vulnerable. And, even, at the same time.

There’s the rumbling groove of Queen Of Heavy Metal. The careering don’t-try-this-at-home holler of I Just Wanna Stick My Head In The Bass Drum. The exhilarating pogo like a loon ramalama of Rock ‘n Roll Freak. It’s irresistible. As in ‘resistance is futile’. Over the next few weeks people will be paying stupid money to see anemic boy bands (like Metallica and AC/DC) peddle their watery brand of (guaranteed over-extended) rock. These people are idiots.

Tonight is the launch of stunning debut album How Did It Get To This?. There’s party poppers, treats, drinks laid on and a raffle. Puny bands of Glasgow take note! And quake.