The Filthy Tongues / The Twist – The Windsor, Kirkcaldy – Friday 19th May 2017

Maybe it’s not that surprising, but I’ve rarely been to shows in my original home town. So last Friday’s jaunt to the Windsor added one to a low single figures tally and also took me to a venue for the first time.

And my first impressions of the Windsor are favourable, not least because it’s wider than it’s deep. There’s a generous sized stage (which doubtless operates as the main seating area in the room’s regular operation as a function suite), whilst the bar is off to one side thereby the casual and chatty gig goers at one step removed from the more dedicated. The floor in front of the stage is a good size and will probably hold something in the region of up to 200 people .

The Twist are the local support act, as apparently, they were 20 odd years ago the last time that Goodbye Mr Mackenzie played Kirkcaldy. Notably this was also only their second show in 20 plus years.

The fact that they’re NOT any sort of mid 90s Stone Roses/Oasis knock-off is a big plus for me but the first few songs, while decent, don’t make a huge impact. Then they play their ‘baggy’ tune (every indie bands from the 90s has one, apparently) and it definitely marks an upswing in their set. The rest of the set gets better and better before climaxing with their Twin Peaks tribute ‘Agent Cooper’ (all sorts of appropriate, this week). By this stage they’ve won me, and a sizeable chunk of the audience, over.

When the Filthy Tongues take the stage, it’s with a stripped back four piece line-up with no violinist or percussionist this time.

Ironically, despite the reduced number of instruments, initially the sound isn’t right. The opening ‘Amsterdam’ and second song ‘Kingdom of Ice’ are definitely missing something, all the more disappointing when it’s the first chance I’ve had to hear the latter, one of the highlights from last year’s LP, played live.

Things improve noticeably though on ‘Children of the Filthy’ and by ‘Crewcut’ everything’s gloriously in focus.

The set thereafter features a mix of older favourites and tracks from the current album, with both ‘Jacob’s Ladder’ and ‘Long Time Dead’ sounding monstrous. There’s also the bonus of a song that the Mackenzies apparently used to cover back in the day – the Shop Assistants’ wonderful ‘Somewhere In China’ – whilst there’s a rousing run of songs to finish the set, including the ‘hit’ ‘The Rattler’.

The band make only a token gesture to leave the stage at the end of the set before launching into the encore with ‘Bowhead Saint’ and finishing with a ferocious ‘Goodwill City’.

By mixing the old and the new the Filthy Tongues manage to both pay suitable tribute to their illustrious past and demonstrate that their newest material is very much relevant to the 21st century.

I can’t wait to find out what they’ll do next.

The Filthy Tongues played:

1 Amsterdam 2 Kingdom of Ice 3 Children of the Filthy 4 Crewcut 5 Somewhere In China 6 Holy Brothers 7 Jacob’s Ladder 8 High 9 Long Time Dead 10 Sick of You 11 Green Turns Red 12 The Rattler

Encore

11 Bowhead Saint  12 Goodwill City

Here’s the new video for ‘Holy Brothers’ (which I really should have featured earlier as a preview for the show):

The Filthy Tongues have the following shows lined up:

17 June – O2 ABC2, Glasgow

29 June – Montrose Town Hall (supporting the Skids)

30 June – Glen Pavilion, Dunfermline (supporting the Skids)

31 August – The Hope & Anchor, London*

1 September – The Albert, Brighton

2 September – Corby*

30 September – Westgarth Social Club, Middlesborough

10 November – Beat Generator Live, Dundee*

11 November – The Cluny, Newcastle upon Tyne*

*Dates to be confirmed

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