The French Wives
Captain's Rest, Glasgow, Thu 1 Oct
The French Wives are neither married nor French, they are however a punchy-pop five-some who are trying to push out of Glasgow and hit the world in the face with their rough-twee sounding songs.
Infesting the Captain's Rest with potential hits, including forthcoming single 'Halloween', the band keep the attention of their audience despite their less than confident stage presence during the first half of their set. They should be more self-assured though, as their cocktail of likeable lyricism, warm vocal harmonies and plucky acoustic guitar melodies, shaken with a lovely dash of violin, is a winning mix. Sounding like a Scottish Arts and Crafts band, think Stars or The Most Serene Republic on Buckie, they have the potential to do a mainstream crossover if they were a little more cocksure. Maybe they should actually drink some Buckfast before taking to the stage.
Support came in three doses.
My Cousin I Bid You Farewell, who are always enjoyable and have amassed a nice little fanbase and notched up critic's praise in their short tenure. Mid-set track, 'The Contented Heart' is a real winner live; a sing-a-long lovely that feels a little bit Fleetwood Mac-ish, which is a big thumbs up by my SECC ticket-holding hands.
Palace Ballet were tight-tight-tight and played out disjointed staccato rhythms and confident performances with beautiful male vocals while opening act A Copenhagen Hope are bit underdeveloped; a little foetus ready to birth strong performances but they need time to practice and structure their songs. They had barrels of conviction and enthusiasm that will help them stand strong in the very near future though. Their songs are punched with shouts and screams; shambolically nice - a bit in the Adam Green/Moldy Peaches style.
Overall, a very strong bill showcasing what's good about Scottish music at the moment.
The French Wives play The Research Club, Glasgow, Sat 31, Oct (Hallowe'en geddit?) for the launch of their double A-side 'Hallowe'en'/'Dogfight'.