Wednesday, 5 November 2014

Gig Review - The LaFontaines - O2 ABC, 31st October 2014

It’s Halloween, and Glasgow's 02 ABC is about to hold host to the biggest party in the City – the 'Big Font Night Out' where Motherwell's finest The LaFontaines are about to play their largest headline show to date.  With very limited door tickets left for the show, two things are certain.  The queue for the bar will be massive and the ABC is already filled to the brim with 'Fonts fans eager and ready to party.

First on stage is Gerry Cinnamon, the Glasgow based singer-songwriter who has seen his fan base rise exponentially in the wake of the referendum after uploading his song Hope Over Fear  to Facebook.  The single then went on to reach number five in the iTunes singles chart, leading the singer down a rabbit hole that seen him play to 15,000 people at George Square, bagging his own King Tut’s headline show on December 6th, and tonight opening the show for The LaFontaines.  Cinnamon's material walks that self aware singer songwriter path trod by the likes of Bob Dylan, but with a good modern Scottish twist.  It’s definitely worth listening to.

Next up are Vukovi from Troon.  Coming on stage dressed as skeletons it's evident the tone for their set is going to be somewhat darker.  Opening with Thick Skinned,  they take things up a gear.  Unfortunately due to some difficulties with the sound it took a little longer for things to take off, however once the sound picked up and they found their feet, the ball kept rolling.  Three songs in Vukovi hit out with their latest single So Long Gone  which has just been released on First Run Records and has been getting regular air-time on KerrangTV.  Their interesting use of rhythms make each and every song recognisable at an instant and yet somehow distinctive and, better still, standalone in their own right.  Vukovi have found a great blend when it comes to finding the middle ground between writing something angsty and penning a great pop song.  All in all a great performance, as their energy on stage is hard to rival.

Whilst the crowd gears up for The LaFontaines a large white sheet covers the stage adding a sense of foreboding mysticism to the evening.  As the lights drop, a video is projected across the screen which shows a zombie infested, apocalyptic Scotland in meltdown very cleverly put together with shots of familiar places and faces including a press release with David Cameron.  It then ends with the band running up the stairs to play their ABC headline because, let's face it, Glasgow doesn't let anything stand in the way of a good night out!

The LaFontaines are at home tonight and from the very first beat the band have the undivided attention of the packed out crowd.  Picking from songs such as All She Knows,  their latest single Under The Storm  and older fan favourites like Shark In The Water,  tonight's show sees the airing of a good mix of oldies and new tracks from their upcoming debut album, which, according to frontman Kerr Okan, has just been finished.  Exuding confidence, and rightly so, Okan teases, "See you all at the Barrowlands", showing that this is a mere stopping point on where the band's sights are set next.

The LaFontaines are well known for their energetic live shows, their dedication, the hard work they put into every show as well as everything they do, and for their undeniably unique image, sound and personality.  Tonight's show is no exception, and The Fonts live up to their reputation and then some.  Their set ends in the only way it possibly could; a wall of sound, smoke cannons and a barrage of confetti. 

With talks of their debut album floating around, these are exciting times for the Motherwell outfit and it looks like 2015 is already shaping up to be a bigger year for them than 2014.  Keep your ears to the ground for the waves The LaFontaines are about to make.

- Shaun McCluskey

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