Teenage Fanclub & Yuck – The Warehouse – 01/06/2010
It was a bit of a trip back in time for Godzilla Blues as he went along to see Teenage Fanclub at The Warehouse on Tuesday night. It seems that the reunion went just fine with GB finding a new found enthusiasm for the Fannies. Here’s his review of the evening…
I used to be a big Teenage Fanclub fan back in their early days but around about the time of ‘Grand Prix’ they kind of fell off my radar and I stopped buying their records. I never started to dislike them because they had grown into a bad band, I just found that I wasn’t getting anything new from them (to be honest, although their sound grew slicker as time progressed, I kind of preferred the earlier, more rough and ready sound of ‘A Catholic Education’ and ‘Bandwagonesque’). I saw them a couple of times in the early 90’s and one of my mates who was a regular gig-going companion in those days asked if I fancied this as a night out. I’d kind of forgotten about it but a couple of weeks ago I was informed I had a ticket.
First band on were called Yuck, they seemed to be a touring support as far as I could gather, I can’t comment too much on them as I only saw 2.5 songs by the time we arrived from The Bassment. They were very youthful looking, the drummer had an impressive ‘fro and the music was pleasant enough fuzzy indie pop.
Teenage Fanclub are obviously still a good crowd-puller as the Warehouse was pretty busy when we arrived and seemed packed once they took to the stage. After getting some drinks we decided to meander down to the dancefloor area, I kind of expected to be quite far back but stage left had an open path to the barrier so I ended up with a spot about 2 rows back which offered a great view so there I stayed.
The band has had the same 3 front men since the start but the long-haired grungy look of the early days has been long replaced and they wandered on looking for all the world like a group of office workers who had decided to have a jam on dress-down day (although Gerry Love strangely looks younger than ever).
Having not purchased the past 4 or 5 albums, I’ll admit this won’t be the most well-informed review, the set seemed to draw heavily on the new album which was released on Monday and a lot of the remainder was unfamiliar material. Despite this I found that there wasn’t one song I didn’t enjoy and I may have to start collecting up the missing albums in my collection…they used to get a lot of comparisons to Big Star in years gone by, personally I think The Byrds are the more obvious comparison, the vocal harmonies were superb and the guitars jangled in just the right way. I find the Warehouse sound to be variable and often resulting in a poor gig-going experience but on this occasion it was flawless, certainly where I was standing. ‘The Concept’ from ‘Bandwagonesque’ was happily played, including the extended outro section. My calls for ‘Satan’, the instrumental thrash that followed that song on the album and which has segued from various songs in the past were met by a grin from Norman but sadly no result. I was quite surprised to only hear a single track from that album, I had hoped for ‘What You Do To Me’ or ‘Star Sign’, but I guess with so many albums of material to draw from and a new album to punt there is a line to draw. The encore sees a slightly predictable but always welcome run through first single ‘Everything Flows’ before the venue empties in amazingly quick fashion, I popped up to the toilet and returned to find the place practically empty!
So a good night in all, the Fanclub proved to still be a great band who look to still be enjoying playing music and I think any return visits in future may see me in attendance. I’d quite like to hear ‘Heavy Metal’ next time for old time’s sake though… Godzilla Blues.
Teenage Fanclub Official Website