To say that Glasgow’s Big Ned are the first signing to the newly-inaugurated Optimo Music label (formerly Oscarr) might give some idea as to where they’re coming from. An exciting and challenging place, sure, but possibly one which has more in common with stomping their way around the country’s dark cellar nightclubs than finding widespread success.
They call themselves ‘doom’n’roll’ and cites their influences as being ‘drugs and alcohol’. They’re also big David Lynch fans, which is no surprise; the quintet are like some bad dream blend of Nick Cave, Elvis Presley and Throbbing Gristle. Murderously-baritoned lead singer ‘Minister’ John Murray wears a bare chest and Stetson like an extra from Cruising, and coils his mic cable like a lasso. Big Ned are dark and weird, and conjure a powerful black atmosphere which feels like it’s dripping from the ceiling. Framed alternately by a strobe and a hellish red light, they burn for just half an hour, then they’re gone. They’re launching their album at Optimo on 5 April. Don’t miss it, but don’t expect many chuckles either.
Nice’n’Sleazy, Glasgow, Sun 15 Mar