Friday 20 July 2012

Midnight Lion and Galleries at King Tuts Wah Wah Hut, 19th July 2012

Every summer, during the month of July when touring bands are on the festival circuit, King Tuts plays host to some of the hottest young unsigned (and signed) bands in Scotland. Going under the banner King Tuts Summer Nights, this is an opportunity for bands to grace the hallowed stage at one of Scotland's most famous venues and win some new fans and exposure.

Galleries are a band that I have put on a couple of times in the past, most recently supporting Vigo Thieves at Nice'n'Sleazys in February. When the Summer Nights line-up was announced I was keen to check on their progress and there was the added bonus that they were on the same bill as Midnight Lion who I had never seen before.

Tuts seemed strangely quiet both outside and in when I arrived at around 8.45pm. A crowd appeared from nowhere just in time for Galleries taking to the stage, in fact two of the band walked though the crowd to get there!

Within seconds Galleries had made their mark; sweeping synth sounds, guitars swooping and soaring and the unmistakable falsetto of singer David McAdam.

One of my favourite things about Galleries is that they know they are good but they are incedibly modest and even shy about it. There were several occasions last night when guitarist Ross Prentice just looked at David and smiled in astonishment at the notes and range that David reached with his voice.

Galleries music is epic, cinematic, totally widescreen. 'Darkness Coming'  was a highlight, pounding drums, chiming guitar and that voice. 

I had a brief word with David before the show and he confirmed they have been (and still are) hard at work recording and things are going well. I really hope someone picks up on this band. They stand out and let their music and talents speak for themselves.

Midnight Lion drew a bigger crowd. Signed to Island but essentially given their own label, the band have also been hard at work in the studio. 

Midnight Lion made full use of the Tuts soundsystem. Two drummers, a celloist, bass, and plenty of synths. The sound was huge and also slightly difficult to describe. If I said the vocals were quite Celtic at times, I mean the accent shines through and also hints of traditional music. However Midnight Lion are far from traditional.

I'm probably not making much sense here!

The two core members of the band linked well, one reminded me of Emle Hirsh from the film Into The Wild - one for the girls!

Anyway, I really enjoyed their set. 'I Will Be King' drew a great response from their fans and understandably so. As a newcomer to the band I didn't know the song names, I just stood and enjoyed it.

I look forward to seeing them again and hearing the results of their time in the studio.

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