Captain’s Rest, Glasgow, Thu 10 Jul
Sweaty, shoebox-sized spaces like the Captain’s Rest are just the sort of venues Glasgow needs more of, and rough’n’ready, in yer face, garage rock trios like Austin’s White Denim are just the sort of bands to fill them – even if violently shrill guitars like frontman James Petralli’s probably ought not to be played in such close proximity to peoples’ heads. The Texans’ debut album Workout Holiday uses the MC5’s big-muffed proto-punk as a ramp for a whole range of funky, psychedelic stunts. A wildly beaten cowbell drives signature single ‘Let’s Talk About It’ forward irresistibly; Hendrixian jerk ‘I Can Tell’ is revved up feverishly during its verses, then cooled off into a slow, soulful howl come the chorus.
Petralli’s voice is the counterpoint to his piercing guitar: warm and bluesy with a built-in distortion all of its own. Drummer Joshua Block’s backing vocals might have been lost when his mic misfired, had he not just got out of his stool and shouted instead, just one boon of playing in such a small room, I suppose.