Mogwai – Zidane: A 21st Centry Portrait – 220 Broomielaw, Glasgow, Sun 21 Jul 2013
Mogwai's mesmeric score to the 2006 Douglas Gordon film goes down a storm on home turf
Glasgow artist Douglas Gordon, together with Philippe Parreno, released his singular film portrait 21st Century Portrait of footballer Zinedine Zidane almost seven years ago, and yet this mini-tour was the first live outing for Mogwai’s mesmeric, melancholy score. Very much a score that enhances and supports the film, it is incredibly loud but seems strangely unobtrusive.
That’s in no small part due to how captivating the film is: if 90 minutes following one footballer around the pitch during the course of a single league match doesn’t sound much like much – especially to the non-football fan – Douglas Gordon has made it speak volumes. He strips all glamour from the job of the footballer, and at the same time intensifies every emotion on show in this theatre of sport. Zidane comes across as an inscrutable lone wolf, troubled and somewhat distant from the tumult around him, and the camera’s focus on his idiosyncrasies intrigues and humanises him in equal measure.
Mogwai, meanwhile, could lend majesty to a game of tiddlywinks, and they’re on home turf here, so it’s no surprise that they go down a storm. When the film finishes they come back for a three-song encore, finishing with the crowd-pleasing beast that is ‘Glasgow Megasnake’.