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Gig review gig reviews (Scottish)

Withered Hand / Jo Foster / King Creosote / Lomond Campbell

A rum do at the Rum Shack, this one! (First strike – Ed). Part of the BBC6 Music Festival fringe, this was the first (ok maybe second, although BM understands the Mono event had no live bands but please correct me, quite like correction sometimes…) Glasgow “happening” of the Triassic Tusk events.

They are usually monikered as Wax and Wayne (running in different venues the past few months) and it was an introduction into a brand new subculture combining mainly acoustic Scottish “folk” acts (in the widest sense ok) with dj-ing multicultural dance records. (BM did not catch the name of the DJ also, sorry!) Now readers, it is a killer combination BM can tell you, although this event was by no means full, which seemed a criminal shame. Nice for those of us who were fortunate enough to get up close and personal with the acts playing but less so for the venue and the promoter, who might both think less favourably about doing this again.

So Lomond Campbell (who has recorded”as part of Found) starts things off with several strident acoustic numbers, notably ‘Every Florist In Every Town’ and ‘Misery Bell’, very good indeed. It is also worth noting his album ‘Black River’ has some far more expansive instruments and sounds very good to these ears, lyrical, pastoral and dark at the same time, Scottish Gothic of a particular time – soundtrack for the forthcoming (well someone bought the rights!) film of “His Bloody Project” maybe, aim high, he is talented…

Next up is a chap from Fife, who had been skulking at the back and even tried to chat up Betty Mayonnaise, well really, readers… KC is one of BM’s all time musical idols and to see him wandering onto the stage, pick up an acoustic and start with ‘Wake Up To This’ was quite overwhelming, BM was quite overcome and the performance was spot-on, the voice unique, “mesmerising” as one fellow-attendee put it, well exactly dear, could not have put it better. And the words, “so many bad decisions…” and stripped of the massive orchestration that it had back in the Old Fruit in January, and on the record, well it is naked in its glory!

‘Betelgeuse’ was next and similarly was naked in its glory, followed by one that BM did not recognise, lots of lyrics about jetsam and flotsam, maybe not a standout (but given the overall quality…ooff) Last one of the brace was ‘Turps’, not on the recent album but on the Fopp freebie additional EP and was very distinctive tonight. So a very brief but extremely wonderful spot by a self-effacing but iconic Scottish singer songwriter, who BM spotted going round the corner to get some chips afterwards – well he has to fucking eat…

The main “reason” for this night was Jo Foster’s album launch – (single ‘I’ll Bbe Thinking Of You All The Time’ already released…) Foster played several tunes on the piano with her drummer, and boy she was good. She has a e whopping voice, some great keyboard riffs and she threatened to take the place down with some amazing breakdowns, think ‘Loaded’ by Primal Scream sung by Kate Bush’s more energetic younger sister and that might go some way. This went down well with the crowded, whom BM suspects had now been swelled by some Rum Shack Saturday regulars (maybe let in free as it was half full) who were here to partay. BM will be checking out this album, no time for song titles in this review I’m afraid but was well good.

Last up was Withered Hand, another BM favourite, go back to 2014 review of the unannounced gig at the Old Fruit… He had not put out an album since 2014’s “New Gods”, however he played from that and a coupla others, oldies or newies, could not place. Just him, no full band, but stripped down, the songs still shine… He is still outstanding, Scotland’s most self-deprecating artist possibly! “King of Hollywood” was a highlight and ‘Horseshoe’ is just a modern classic. BM regrets to say that Mr Hand did not get the appreciation he deserved, too many people at the bar, revving up to dance, but long may he strum and grimace, the songs are top quality, mordant, emotional and they can cut through bullshit at 100 paces, so BM salutes you Dan…

A strange night, but a good one, and BM will be keeping an eye on Triassic’s movements in future…