Cry Parrot New Year Fest - Nice & Sleazy, Glasgow, Fri 13 Jan (4 stars)

Cry Parrot New Year Fest - Nice & Sleazy, Glasgow, Fri 13 Jan

Snapshot of Scotland’s restless underground featuring Sacred Paws

Not so much a ‘hot tips for 2012’ shindig as a snapshot of Scotland’s restless underground, the second night of independent promoter Cry Parrot’s new bands residency is dominated by electronica, but there’s room for polyrhythmic guitar’n’drum jams too. Cru Servers take their cues from the cyborg beats and noise of Fuck Buttons and Black Dice, their machines coughing up corrosive filth over itchy-fingered drum pads and chiming post-rock melodies. Not quite the finished article, they’re nonetheless full of wit and oddball ideas. The Modern Institute are altogether slicker, with a tousle headed vocalist intoning echo-laden soundbites over sharply defined beats and synths. It’s slightly lacking in dynamics, with potential earworms left half-buried, suggesting this trio need to embrace their inner disco tarts.

Undisputed band of the night are Sacred Paws (pictured), comprising Eilidh of Golden Grrls and Skeleton Bob on drums, and Rachel from Electrelane affiliates Trash Kit on guitar. Raw Soweto high-life riffs and rolling Afrobeat grooves are filtered through post-punk sass and ramshackle K Records charm. It’s an utterly joyous sound, the duo trading giddy melodies and righteous chants over febrile rhythms and chunky, infectious guitar. Judging by the dancing feet and smiling faces, Glasgow has a new favourite band. Now into their fourth year of existence, Cry Parrot’s reputation for delivering eclectic and inclusive shows remains undimmed.

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