Home Gigs Gig Review: Florence Black @ Stereo, Glasgow

Gig Review: Florence Black @ Stereo, Glasgow

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Review & Photography by Ritchie Birnie for MPM

The Welsh threesome are back in Glasgow for another sold out show, another venue ticked off the list and another step forward on their journey.

First up tonight and the band that got the nod from local talent for the opening band was She Burns Red. It was obvious from the off the boys deserved this slot. The local lads have been treading the boards and their wares constantly and the one comment that always pops up with fans who have been following them for some time is “what did they do during lockdown?” That is not a query around them being lazy but more about the marked difference in the band in a serious before and after reflection as there is a huge shift.

They opened with “Gone” with its instant impact and groove it got heads turning and from that moment on they were all about winning new fans and succeeding. I suspect for many the highlight was their latest song/video “Killing Time”. Even a blind/deaf person can tell there is something a little bit special here.

If the boys keep gigging the way they are, building up those live hours and producing top quality songs they will get onto that ever increasing list of Scottish bands you cannot ignore.

Second band and support for the whole tour is Haxan an all female three piece from Wales. I am afraid I have to put my hands up and be honest the band just did not do it for me.

I can see the appeal, musically they were solid but for me there was something lacking. I should also probably state at this point I am not a fan of Haelstorm so my opinion is pretty mute at times.

The ladies went down well so I will take this one on the nose.

The venue is sold out, the place is rammed. Trying to get to the front to take photos is a mare but thanks to everyone who let me in and sorry if I got in the way.

Florence Black know Glasgow inside out, they know punters by first names, they have played more venues in this city than a lot of local bands and Stereo is another to tick off the list and another place they have instantly outgrown.

A huge part of their popularity in this city is down to word of mouth, people are turning up in groups, we drag everyone to see this band as we spotted the potential a long time ago and we saw three down to earth boys who love what they do and just want to share it. There are no airs, no graces, even now after the boys just had two stints in Germany playing massive stadiums. No, these boys still stop, they still say hi and are free with the man hugs.

This week sees the one year anniversary of their incredible debut album “Weight of the World”. An album that I have played constantly during that year and easily became my album of 2021. I have lived these songs for a long time and heard them live so many times but they still do not fail to blow me away every single time.

The sound is not the best tonight. Drum sound is a bit overpowering but with a concrete basement and a packed to the rafters hall what do you expect? It did not defer from the event and as “Zulu” opened the show the crowd were rabid.

As “On the Ropes” commenced the humidity was already building and Tristan was already a sweat soaked madman. The brutality of this song ignites the crowd and causes even more chaos.

The aggression builds through “Deep End”, “Can You Feel it” and “Inside Out” amongst others before we get a well earned release on “Grove Street”, a song that harks all the way back to the boys debut EP and I wonder how different the boys lives are from the days portrayed in those lyrics.

As we buckle in for the rest of the show the sweat is running down the walls, dripping from ceilings and down a few butt cracks I am sure. The place is unforgiving.

The run in is outstanding, album opener “Black Cat” is up next followed by a blistering run of “Bird on a Chain” then it is the ever present cover “Breadfan”. This never fails to get everyone bouncing and I just love seeing first time giggers get blown away with the rendition of the Budgie classic.

That leaves the final song of the evening for me easily the best song on W.O.T.W, “Sun & Moon”. The song that for me shows the bands diversity and the potential that is now shinning through.

It is a very simple thing to say but it is not a simple thing to achieve…Florence Black are the real deal and one of the best new live bands I have seen this last decade. These boys are your festival headliners of the future and they deserve everything that comes their way.

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