Fucked Up / Chastity – King Tut’s Wah Wah Hut, Glasgow – Tuesday 22nd January 2019
I don’t go to many shows where I know I’m going to unfamiliar with most of the songs played but this was one. And it was a fairly late decision to go at that. I was only reminded that Fucked Up were in Glasgow two days beforehand but since their latest LP ‘Dose Your Dreams’ was my favourite LP of 2018 arrangements were made to get to the show.
As a band with an extensive history of which I knew almost nothing I wasn’t expecting to hear that much of the 18 track long new record and, as it turned out, they only played six songs from the album. And most of these were front loaded.
Let’s deal with those first. The title track opened the show, a baggy epic which also allowed singer Damian Abraham to make an eye-catching entrance halfway through. It was a wonderful start yetthe band immediately slammed straight into an old song without missing a beat, giving an early indication of just what a tight playing unit they are.
There was then a run of the second to fourth songs on DTD in the same order as they are on the record and each was greeted just as warmly as the “hits”.
Any thoughts though that the band might focus largely on the new album were quickly dashed but the older stuff wasn’t as far removed from DTD as I might have imagined. Certainly there were no more baggy tunes but whether delivering pummelling riffs or exchanging leads, there was always a core of melody at the heart of everything.
Abraham is an intense stage presence constantly prowling or charging from one side of the stage to another, frequently coming over the barrier in front of the stage. He also offered fans a chance to sing a couple of lines, regularly, but with nothing to gauge this against and, frankly the vocals often being a bit lost in the mix, it didn’t spoil my enjoyment.
After including a couple more songs from DTD in the closing run the set seemed to end somewhat abruptly before the band returned for a final three song encore.
It’s fair to say that the show exceeded any expectations I might have had and, for all that they only played a third of the record, it still managed to reinforce my belief in DTD as my favourite record of 2018.
A quick word about support Chastity. They weren’t a million miles from the headliners but didn’t inject quite as much light into their set. Pummelling is a fair description of the first half of the set but by slackening the pace a little in the second half and, in doing so demonstrating that there are tunes in there, they were certainly better.