In a dark annex of the Garage lies the Attic bar. A tight wee venue that is filled with an intimate sense of how close you are to all the musical goings on. Lying just behind the curtain were all the prepped guitars, tuned and preened, ready to be played. The night began all very low key, with just one support act to lead in the Shams.
The Links were the flavour of this warm up. Young and full of the buzz of the equally young crowd. Taking their inspiration from the likes of The Beatles, The Smiths, The LA’s and DMA’s, The Links give off that nonchalan- but-hunners-of-talent-behind-these-stone-cold-faces vibe. Hailing from their home town of Edinburgh, they brought a strong and bold sound to the stage this past weekend. The clashy reverb and distortion of the guitars fought against some pretty solid Britpop vocals. Given the responses of the crowd, the guys were tearing up the albeit small turnout and holding their own against a raucous crowd of carnage and flying beers. The night continued in style. Their tunes covered a range of feels, going from happy party summer drive to let’s go sit on our beds and cry. I couldn’t’ decide whether the guys were still trying to find their sound in light of this, but nonetheless the building blocks of a great act were all there. The rhythm guitar particularly caught my eye, oozing with tightly honed skill and talent, he stole the show. The Links still have two more gigs remaining before the year is out.
Now suitably built up and already mesmerised it was time for Shambolics to do their thing, and do their thing they did. All the way from Dunfermline, this ‘dreamy rock and roll’ 4 piece brought their A game. Modelling off of that 1960s/70s psychedelia feel, their harmonies and clean guitar patterns sung through like a lark through an acid haze. The crowd were going wild, the faces all around were beaming with happiness, it was a people watchers dream. Their sound is ultimately one of a well-rehearsed, well put together band. Their identity is strong and they confidently conveyed this throughout the set. Weaving through some beautifully melodic tracks, there was a bold statement to be made. As the pints continued to reach new heights, so did the sounds on display. Keen rhythms kept driving each tune forward, paving the way for the next. The build to the final track was a phenomenal escalation of excitable musical frequencies. It felt like one set was just not enough.
Shambolics are not a new feature on Discovery but certainly are becoming a household name on the Scottish circuit. Sadly this Glasgow gig was the penultimate of this 2019 winter tour but I literally will sit in anticipation of what’s to come next year.