Live Reviews


  Craig Hughes, The Dirt, The Bluesfather live at The State Bar in Glasgow

Friday the 13th is not a good time for a man to be out on the streets. Any fool knows that. It's a time to stay in and watch the telly. Not the time to do a spot of reviewing but I'm a lucky guy. I'll get away with it.

It's all going fine. I'm in the basement of the State Bar. The Guinness is £1.80. That puts me one step closer to paradise (or several steps closer in the course of the evening). The Bluesfather is on first and he plays some blues songs on a shiny red guitar. He's from Edinburgh and he's very mannered and polite. I'm just not sure you can be that mannered and polite and still have the blues.

Moving on to a different astral plane were The Dirt. They are a duo that does murder ballads. You know the sort of thing - you go down to the river to dispose of a body and get shot by your best friend who thinks you have taken advantage of his sister but it wasn't you, it was your twin brother who you accidentally shot that afternoon. It's alt-country gone bad and it's also a pretty damn near perfect trip down the road to redemption. From the bleakly humorous subject matter of their songs to those country style harmonies, The Dirt proved to be an unexpected pleasure.

Craig Hughes is promoting his new album "Pissed Off, Bitter and Willing to Share". If you're going to sing the blues, then a bit of anger and a slide guitar will come in handy and, indeed, those very things are used by Craig Hughes to drive his songs along. The end result, however, tended more towards the melancholy than the aggressive but was enjoyable nonetheless.

She was looking for a man called Mercy and she found him. Outside, the rain danced on the pavements around the three in the morning crowd. It's enough to give any man the blues.

Review Date: November 13, 2009


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