Coming down from up north in Aberdeen, The 101 were an act that rang a bell, having seen their name floating around our feeds, but we never actually took the chance to check them out; at the very least, we had heard positive things about them.
It turned out that we got only one sixth of them – the frontman, Dexter – and although in a stripped back situation, he alone did quite the job in impressing us with a line-up of “depressing love songs” at his disposal.
Dex boasted one hell of a grand, astounding voice backed up by a broad range and full-on emotion. In addition, he was an excellent keyboard player, and we enjoyed the writing of the content too. He was confident, and as he progressed, folk gradually warmed up and approached the front to get a closer look.
Capping off with First & Last, it was a stunning performance that served as a nice sampler platter for what The 101 have to offer. Our curiosity was now attention, and we hope to see the group in their entirety sooner than later.
Apache Darling have been one of our favourite local synthpop bands for the past couple of years or so, having cemented our fandom with their amazing Bubblegum EP in 2018, and after having not seen them for so long, they undoubtedly brought their best to the table here.
Stef was an incredible frontwoman; so exuberant, glamourous and animated in everything she did, and she helms such a resounding pair of vocal cords. Equally as fabulous was Charlotte, with lovely harmonies in her own right as well as superb basslines.
Andrew, appearing to have fully recovered from nearly chopping his finger off like a silly billy a little while back, multi-tasked his butt off with sweet keys and synths, and Danny as always was absolutely top notch on the drumming side of things.
They gave us a mishmash of tunes such as Ground, Weapon and the title track of their aforementioned record, and all were catchy and utterly infectious. In fact, there was a moment where one of the venue’s staff members passing by paused to watch them for a minute, obviously liking what he was seeing and hearing.
A really tight display from one of the best of their kind in the Glasgow scene, who have constantly proven to belong in a bigger league than where they currently sit.
For ages now, Ayrshire duo November Lights have been throwing their name about and impressing seemingly everybody within close proximity, but until this point, we kept missing out on them live, but now with nothing stopping us, we can safely say that they were quality.
The place was jammed from wall to wall as they got ready. It was sweltering – the pains of having a fat jacket – and there was a buzz in the air. Tech issues delayed them, but eventually they got going with flying colours as folk sang back the words to Pray.
The four on stage did admittedly seem a touch shaken because of the early problems at first, but they did find a groove and only got better with each passing melodic number, highlighted by memorable choruses that had those in attendance completely fixated, such as the bouncing Black & Blue, the tremendous slower piece Stay and the hooking Too Little Too Late.
Naturally, their signature song Talk sparked an ensemble of unified “oooooh’s” from the crowd, plus they earned an encore in which they delivered not one but two bonus tunes, and this included the energetic and electrifying Lonely, made better by a multitude of voices echoing the lyrics.
James was a great vocalist, capable on the keys and engrossed in what he did, and he was flanked by Nathan, who was also prime on the bass, and they were accompanied by cool riffs and ripe drum beats from their fellow musicians.
Despite faults outwith their control, the boys still turned in a superb outing that was professionally carried and confirmed that they were in fact the real deal that everyone claimed them to be. No doubt that we need to catch them at another gig down the road.