Kochka, Blue Sky Archives, Campfires In Winter, Jonathan Sebastian Knight live at The 13th Note in Glasgow
Names. I’m rubbish at names so Jonathan Sebastian Knight hadn’t rung the bell of recognition as the descent into the basement of the 13th Note was completed. But a few minutes later however, it came to me that this was the front man of the dreadfully intense and meaningful My Cousin I Bid You Farewell and, in a strange case of less is more, Mr Knight’s deeply personal introspection worked better with only a reverb laden electric guitar to decorate his musings. It would have been nice to see him pick up the pace and maybe get a bit angry about his woes for he was, after all, dressed in black.
Campfires in Winter proved to be rather better than expected and certainly far better than their rather poor recorded output would have led you to believe. Straying not far from the Arcade Fire goes indie rock mainstream beloved of the better brought up amongst us, they showed a fair degree of poise if little sense of adventure. Thumbs up to the subtle charms of “Cardboard Ship”, though.
Stylistically similar were Blue Sky Archives. Well, not too similar as they pushed the boundaries with some syncopated percussion that drove their songs along with something of a spring in their step and Lauren Mayberry added some girl next door charm to the vocals (and the drums for that matter). Perhaps a touch too serious for general consumption, Blue Sky Archives were way too clever to be dull.
Then the wonder of Kochka struck out from the stage. I often wonder why bands in Glasgow don’t seem to push themselves musically. Perhaps they don’t have the skills or the wherewithal or perhaps they are just afraid of Kochka for Kochka fear nothing and proved it through a set full of songs with right angled tempo changes and genuine musical passion with Sheryll Armstrong proving that girl drummers are a very good thing indeed to have in your band. There are bands that the phrase “quirky charm” applies to and Kochka are one of them
Two cats go into a bar. The first cat says “Miaoux”. The second cat says “Do you have to repeat everything I say?”
September 9, 2010
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