Alternative music reviews

October 24, 2008

Scotland’s Shame – Mogwai, Manchester Academy, October 23rd, 2008

Filed under: mogwai,reviews — @ 3:50 pm Comments (1)

When I grow up, I’d like to be in a band. That band would be modest, humble yet personable, and make epic sonic soundscapes that move from quieter than a frozen leaf in winter to an aural assault that would bring down the walls of Jericho. Simple yet complex. Slow yet fast. Quiet then loud (and then louder still). That band would be Mogwai. I can’t remember the last time I saw a band where every second of every song banished all extraneous thought (actually, it was probably the last time I saw them) and where for 90-odd minutes I just lived for the moment. Maybe in my advanced years I should have left for a cocoa and a chocolate hobnob rather than stayed for the encore and emerged bleeding from all orifices after a double whammy of ‘Like Herod’ and ‘Batcat’. (‘Mogwai fear Satan’ has now been downgraded to earlier in the set…).

I have a problem with Mogwai and song titles, and tend to refer to them as ‘that one’ or ‘this one’, but have managed to remember that my new best all-time fave track is ‘Scotland’s Shame’. This was my personal highlight. It demonstrates the later maturity of Mogwai’s work – in contrast to quickfire quiet/loud/quiet/loud contrasts, this builds from a simple keyboard motif, growing in stature and grandeur as the various instruments are introduced and make their presence felt, over a thumpingly martial tom-tom/bass beat growing to a crescendo before gradually fading away to leave a final plaintive keyboard. No lyrics? None needed. Currently number one on my funeral playlist.

Oh, and the Fuck Buttons? Sounded like the early Human League, or Dave and I pissing about with our synthmaker packages for half an hour. Inoffensive, unoriginal, nothing to get excited about. And that name’s not big or clever…

Review by Big Dave

1 Comment

  1. Mogwai – some of Scotland’s finest and no shame at all! 😉 Alternative music – The Years

    Comment by The Years — December 26, 2008 @ 2:54 pm

Leave a comment