Experimental Music Love

January 8, 2008

The Dears – Glasgow, Oran Mor 20/10/06

Filed under: Live Reviews — by Free Edinburgh Podcast @ 7:49 pm

At the end of the last millennium, when people thought of Canadian music, only tiresome MOR rock courtesy of Bryan Adams and Alanis Morrissette sprung to mind. Oh, and Celine Dion of course.

Skip forward to 2006, and its now home to probably the most incredible and original bunch of musicians in music today. The likes of Arcade Fire, New Pornographers, A Silver Mt. Zion, The Unicorns and Broken Social Scene are the new kings of the indie world, creating breathtaking albums and playing awe inspiring live shows. And a large part of that is down to The Dears and the success they had with breakthrough album ‘No Cities Left’ three years ago. Now back with new record ‘Gang of Losers’ to promote, they take to Oran Mor’s stage to show why they are at the heart of the greatest scene in music today.

Okay, I’m going to use up all the superlatives now in one fell swoop to save time, and the effort of formulating sentences to get across how great this band were. Epic, orchestral, grandiose, majestic, astonishing, immaculate, terrific, heartfelt, blistering, emotional, powerful, stupendous, inspirational, gorgeous, soaring, incredible, extraordinary, cor blimey utterly – better than head made of chocolate – amazing.

Take from that what you will. All could be applied to what really was a fantastic show as they delighted the dedicated following here tonight with songs largely from their last two records. Latest single ‘White’s Only Party’ is turned into a passionate pop jaunt that impresses no end in its hopeful message.

This is a band happy with who they are and proud of their work. Though some may see trouble in Murray Lightbourne’s lyrics, there’s an ironic charm to it all, akin to Morrissey. Yet unlike the former Smith, his delivery extends beyond a dry sarcasm into literally screaming those words that mean so much, especially evident on a hugely well received ’22: The Death of All Romance’.

Other modern classics like ‘No Cities Left’ and ‘Never Destroy Us’ sound even more impressive live, as Lightbourne’s compelling frontmanship thrills, and the bands abounding talent shines through, creating excruciatingly complicated and resounding 10 minute indie prog that doesn’t last nearly long enough.


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