No one wants to spend Saturday night at home. It's a night for pleasure - be it from alcohol, buck-dancin', fornication or another form of unadulterated disgrace - and BluesBunny could hardly have had more fun seeing the Lancashire Hotpots.
As is often the case these days, there was a slight change to the advertised bill, with Wave falling off the bill to be replaced by New Noise Pollution, who weren't slow in announcing their arrival. An atmospheric opener led into "The Others", the first track to fully showboat the abilities of lead guitarist Ian Anderson. The pop-metal "Brain Dead" was arguably the stand-out track, with Anderson again the centre of the song. A few other songs of lesser impact led us to the end of their set. This band carries definite potential, and with a few aspects of their performance polished up, they could soon be frying bigger fish.
Postcards From Home were next up. Launching into "Gospel Singer", the band showcased a far more melodic, mellow sound than their predecessors. This sound was only heightened by the introduction of a violin on their next track. "Constant Threat", whilst not overflowing with hit potential, was a well-crafted track that allowed singer Scott Thomson to impress with his vocals. "Things That Keep Me Here" proved a pleasant end to a decent performance. This track almost felt out place, sounding more like the Libertines than Coldplay, but it's certainly in the band's best interests to emulate the former. A band yet to settle on a definite sound perhaps, but the ability is there.
It's perhaps fair to say that the first two bands could learn a lot from The Fusiliers. From opening track "Take Me Home", their experience was apparent. "Days" was a track that although slow to get going, proved to be a simple yet effective anthem. Each individual in the band carried a great deal of confidence, which is only right for a band as able as they are. The crowd - quite rightly - received the band with great applause. "The Way" allowed for the drummer - every band's goalkeeper - to show off a little, and acted as a decent prelude to what was undoubtedly the band's best song of the night, "Beauty and the Grace". The almost post-punk drive of the song was well met by singer Gaz's charismatic vocals. Undoubtedly destined for better things.
The Lancashire Hotpots - four bunnet-clad men - embrace all that occurs in Lancashire. Opening with "Bitter Lager Cider Ale Stout" - a humorous condemnation of "designer drinks"- it was apparent that the Hotpots were here for a good time. Their haranguing of modern foolishness continued with "Met a Girl on MySpace". The predominant use of traditional folk songs - despite the band's musical aptitude - said little about the band's ability to compose songs. That's not their game, though." This Lancashire Town" was a well-dressed reworking of "Dirty Old Town, and by this point, the crowd were absorbed. While the band barely put a foot wrong musically, the music was never going to be much more than an accompaniment to the rib-tickling chirpings of singer Bernard Thresher. Yet this takes nothing away from what felt like a great night in Lancashire.
The night offered variety and humour in great stock, serving as a decent showcase for three promising Scottish bands, and going some distance towards healing anti-English sentiments! Eh up!