Young Fathers & LAW – The Lemon Tree, Aberdeen 16/12/13
Young Fathers first came to my attention when supporting Chvrches in Aberdeen earlier this year and after impressing me more on the night than the headliners did I’ve kept an eye on their work ever since. Tape One was hastily purchased and Tape Two a more recent acquisition. Both have their high moments but no filler tracks on either, at all. It’s an atmospheric theme that grows on you. Its music for a dark room and a big sound. Their next release is Dead, due in February I believe but for now we have a live performance at The Lemon Tree.
Support tonight is LAW. Lauren Holt from Edinburgh, a jazz singer in her past and now creating a quite memorable image for herself, visual as well as audio-wise. No downloads available just yet, just the video below. On the night she sings to a mixture of pre-recorded sounds, created I think by her friends the Young Fathers. Very hard for me to describe as its so intense and her performance adds an auto-harp and a guitar for a couple of the tracks but I’m hearing all kinds of influences in there from soul to disco and everything cool in between. It’s all over in half an hour or so. Everyone here seemed to listen. A small but perfectly behaved audience. The stage has been lit by a single white light projector. LAW keeps talk to an absolute minimum, letting her performance do the talking. I loved it, and want to go and see her again. Today. And tomorrow. You should too, you might just enjoy. Check the video below. Its edgy and uncomfortable. It works for me.
LAW setlist… Number One, Scrambled, Hustle, Coins For You, Treasurer, Haters, Touches
Ah, the return of the Young Fathers to the city. The booming bass and the vocals that go from haunting and sincere to angry tribal chanting in two crashing beats. Kicking off with the powerful Fortunes the set is a mixture of both their releases with a couple of new tracks dropped into the mix including the intriguing War. The three vocalists all take turns as the lead, and all interchange places on stage with various moves to keep your eyes as well as your ears entertained. Like Lauren, there is no time wasted with small talk. No promoting of themselves or their merch, just four men who rip into their tracks and you can feel their passion and feeling for the songs. Its more than just a band playing on stage, it’s a trip into their thoughts, opinions, loves, hates. There was no encore but who needed one when the last track was partially sung to the crowd without the use of a mic. There was no speaking in the room. At that moment life was good.
My gig of the year took place outside the city this time round but for Aberdeen gigs alone, this is certainly a contender.
Young Fathers setlist… Fortunes, No Way, Deadline, Queen is Dead, War, Come to Life, Low, Get Up, Way Down in the Hole, Rumbling, Effigy, I Heard
Words and pictures by Still Burning.
Young Fathers Website