Roxy Music - Clyde Auditorium, Glasgow, Fri 28 Jan 2011
Less a group than a luxury brand
Several days before this brace of Glasgow shows, Bryan Ferry turned up in House of Fraser for a signing session where entry was conditional on the purchase of a £50 box-set. A similar skein of pension-provision ran through every aspect of this enterprise; from £65 tickets to hilariously larcenous merchandise. It consolidated the impression that Roxy, on the occasions they reconvene, are now less a group than a luxury brand, a sort of Aquascutum with saxophones. Such is underlined tonight by the absence of any new material.
Altogether, this is opulent, leather-upholstered, velvet-lined nostalgia at its height, the best a man can get; sedately engaging when the 12-strong band tackle the hits (‘Pyjamarama’, ‘Virginia Plain’) but the rest of the time as arresting as a watching a banker test drive an Audi.
Generous helpings of stuff from the solo albums of auxiliary members is thrown in too, partly you suspect to allow the 65-year-old Ferry the occasional sit-down. Obviously in their four decades Roxy have evolved and can’t be expected to remain the glamourous, matinee sci-fi mutants of their early days. But I don’t imagine many anticipated they’d evolve into the James Last Orchestra.