Fresh off supporting one of Scotland’s biggest bands, The Fratellis, Glasgow rock trio The Northern were looking to keep the momentum going and kick off 2017 fashionably with a headline show at the King Tuts New Year’s Revolution festival. Alongside them, a selection of acts we had never seen before, so it would also be a journey of discovery for ourselves.
As the empty venue slowly filled with people, Rachel Alice Johnson took to the stage and did very well. She had quite a grace, her harmonies for the most part being very nice and elegant and her strumming smooth, but then at other times she would turn up the dial and display more feisty passion; most notable in Hungry and Safe Island.
It is a little questionable whether she fitted on this particular bill, but there you have the unpredictable nature of the New Year’s Revolution. Despite that fact, it did little to affect our appreciation for her.
But now it was time for something more appropriate, in the form of All Suns Blazing, who brought their brand of bluesy rock n’ roll to the table.
There were stylish riffs and addicting, toe-tapping rhythms to be had, and frontman Henry was really getting into the swing of things, showing off lots of energy which added to the entertainment factor.
While not necessarily the most groundbreaking of bands that we have seen, they did provide us with a fun live experience nevertheless.
It occurred to us that with each respective act, the excitement levels got higher and higher, and that became quite apparent with Saints.
They had already got under way by the time we were making our way upstairs, but immediately they had us hooked by their sound and we migrated straight to the front of the stage.
The quartet were utterly dynamic throughout, playing a set defined by a mix of brisk vocals, rocking guitars and fiercely tight drum work, with the focal points for us being Babylon, Praying and the staggering final number.
They had unexpectedly made an impact on us, being one of our favourite discoveries of the festival thus far, and we would gladly see them again.
Now it was time for our old chums in The Northern to finish things off, and they knocked it out the park.
The 3-piece dished out a short but sweet array of action-packed tracks such as the catchy Stuck In A Daze, the phenomenal Through Your Teeth and the swift untitled new song; all performed with a combination of banging, intensely-plucked riffs, slick bass lines and tenacious drumming, altogether generating a serious electricity within the room.
Capping off with Living Free, they had delivered big time, and hopefully this will be only the first of many triumphs for the guys over the course of 2017.