LIVE REVIEW: Bad Suns @ The Garage Attic, Glasgow (15/01/2019)

Credit: Promo

Date: January 15th 2019
Venue: The Garage Attic, Glasgow
Support: DYGL


Californians Bad Suns might not have cracked the UK quite like they have the US, but that can’t be expected to stay the same for too long. Their mash of post-punk inspiration mixed together with indie sensibilities, 80s style nostalgia, and delicious pop hooks simply sets them up to be adored wherever they roam.

Thankfully, the one date sold-out on their UK and European ‘Away We Go’ tour so far is in a minuscule attic room in Glasgow.

Before the main act, Tokyo based four-piece DYGL [7] take to the little floor stage. Packed with a raucous indie rock fueled sound, the group delve across a selection of high-energy songs that, while performed with vibrant enthusiasm, unfortunately fail to get the entire room jumping. Frontman Nobuki Akiyama sings with a southern English swagger, as his confident vocals, accompanied by jaunty jabbing guitar melodies, harks back to indie greats like Arctic Monkeys and The Strokes.

The latter influence is clear, for the New Yorkers helped produce DYGL‘s first record, ‘Say Goodbye To Memory Den’. The atmosphere might not be buzzing, but DYGL don’t care. They came to put on a show, and that’s just what they’ve done.

Unsurprisingly for a tour titled after their recent single, Bad Suns [9] open emphatically on said track, with its stomping, pumping tones, injecting a fresh energy into the crowd. If a solid entrance didn’t get people moving, then a quick-fire one-two of dance-worthy hits ‘Daft Pretty Boys’ and ‘We Move Like The Ocean’ certainly do.

Frontman Christo Bowman is as charming as he is talented, delivering consistently on-point vocals and a superb energy that reverberates from him and right through the rest of the band. ‘Swimming In The Moonlight’ and ‘Off She Goes’ allow him to flex his vocal chords and demonstrate his powerful array of variation in his delivery, coasting through charismatic cleans to soaring falsettos.

Bowman reveals that this is the band’s first ever show in Scotland, and it does feel like an awfully long-time coming. Yet, this crowd are more than making up for lost time, dancing away the night to the sound of Bowman‘s infectiously sweet hooks.

The rest of the group are consistently slick as well. Bassist Gavin Bennett and drummer Miles Morris play off one another superbly, jumping between popping, sliding riffs and funk-filled, groove-littered beats without missing a note. All the while, guitarist Ray Libby goes under-the-radar with his subtle, neat guitar work, like on ‘Heartbreaker’, where he just oozes cool, calm, and collected.

With two albums in the bag already and a third, ‘Mystic Truth’, set for release soon, the group might’ve been tempted to test the waters with some yet unheard, unreleased tracks. Instead, they dive headfirst through a set of fan favourites, with the exception of the freshly released single ‘Hold Your Fire’, a track that’s sure to be one fans grow to love. In looking back, they even play ’20 Years’, a song from their 2013 EP, ‘Transpose’, which serves as an unexpected but pleasant surprise to a handful of the audience.

After a short encore interlude, including a predictable but never dull occurrence of Scotland’s number one live show chant “Here we, here we, here we fucking go”, the group re-emerge to the funky ‘Dancing On Quicksand’, before glossing over the lovely melodies of ‘Outskirts Of Paradise’.

There’s no surprise that ‘Cardiac Arrest’, undeniably their biggest hit to date, caps a fantastic set. We just have to hope that it’s not as long a wait until they’re next in town.