48 Hours/ City Of Ashes @ Audio, Glasgow Sep08


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48 Hours/ City Of Ashes @ Audio, Glasgow

48 Hours/ City Of Ashes @ Audio, Glasgow

The Co headline tour from 48 hours and City Of Ashes rolled into a warm and muggy Glasgow on 6th September. Both bands are very familiar with Scotland and it’s finest cuisine(that would be Buckfast) so they came ready to party, with us and with the town. The show wrapped up at the unheard of time of 10PM but they packed a good deal into the short time they had on stage.

Prior to these two bands we had local lads Get Out Strong. These guys perplexed me a little as I always try and find some kind of common ground on similar sounds/bands but I just came up blank. To sum up my notes made after their set “ They were a little bit punk, a little bit indie and a lot of I don’t fucking know”.

After I decided I was not going to be able to label them I done the only thing left…enjoy the show and that is exactly what I done. The threesome played their hearts out and were a perfect opening act for the co headliners. Myself and the crowd in attendance thoroughly enjoyed the music and the quick lesson in how to fix guitars.

Next up was 48 Hours which I was a bit surprised at but with a co headline tour you have to swap top spot and tonight wasn’t the boys turn. This is 48 hours 3rd visit to Scotland and I can proudly say I have been at all three, the last of which was their brilliant performance at Wildfire Festival.

If you have seen this band live you know what to expect…if you haven’t just take one look at Adam Jerome’s poor battered and bruised guitar. I am sure it was once pristine and loved but it has been battered and abused, taken to the brink and patched up with duct tape…the poor thing cannot have much time left on this planet. That said it has given endless hours of enjoyment to the fans and we do appreciate it’s pain and suffering.

Yes, this band are a bit rowdy to say the least but to defy that image they kick off with the atmospheric”Hollow” from their debut album. It gets you in the mood gently before going full throttle. We then burst into the chainsaw riffage that is “ Given Up”, a blistering track from the amazing “Expectations”.

With “ Martyr” we have probably their best known song and quite rightly so…it is just awesome. The crowd are happily screaming “ I painted On A smile” and it is at this point the crowd just go berserk and the band feed off it, Gary Broughton is throwing his bass and his body around the stage with abandon.

Liars” is up next, another fast paced number, a chugging riff with an angelic chorus that almost took my voice. We go back to the debut for “ Nothing More” and it is great to see the set list changed to include the older songs. It is followed up with “Not Alone” after some quick paramedical assistance for that poor guitar.

All too soon they finish the set off with the sultry “Gone” and the perfect “”Expectations”. Another gig down in Glasgow and another overwhelming success. The guys just get better every show and if you have not checked them out yet please make a point of doing it now.

The first question you have to ask after watching City Of Ashes is how in the hell are this band not signed? They may have been new to me but I left with two CDs and a T-shirt( Please get the XL purple ones back in stock ASAP). They took to the stage literally minutes after 48 hours. I just managed to get to the toilet and the bar before the PA burst to life with the eery “ Uprising” and instantly Orion Powell grabs you visually as he is all over the stage. He is up on the riser, the amps and everywhere between. This explains a lot about his appearance as he is built like a butcher’s pencil as we say in these parts. With his usual black vest, chiseled cheek bones and ribs like a whippet you just cannot take your eyes off him.

Vipers Nest” is next up with it’s indie guitars, powerful drums and erratic vocals it rises and falls and takes you with it. They have managed to do what is very difficult these days, to sound original. “Confessions” is a perfect analogy of this. You can hear lots of influences but wrapped up in a band that are skilled, frantic and just a little chaotic, they have the prefect live persona.

As Orion introduces “In Retrospect” he lets us know in his mixed up Irish/American accent that he struggles to speak to the opposite sex. He asks if anyone else has this issue and three very sheepish people put their hands up(well done folks…you guys will be first to get help at an AA meeting). With his looks, accent and energy I am amazed he has this problem but on the plus side there is hope for us all.

We slot right into the dreamy vibe of “ Sometimes”, a song wrapped in brilliant vocals and almost chill out guitar. We go back to 2013 with “Waves” and it shows the earlier songs have stood the test of time. Listening to any track from City Of Angels on record has absolutely no bearing on what they are like live. They are not even close such is their vibrancy in front of an audience.

For the final track we go back to “Waves” for “Battles Of My Youth” and to take on extra singing duties the boys from 48 Hours take to the stage. As if it wasn’t busy enough we now get a blur of musicians before us and a mass of harmonics on the chorus.

I am so glad I got to catch this band live as they were a class act and after speaking to them they seem like a great bunch of guys too. Hurry back soon lads and do me a favour…can we have more than 7 songs next time?

Review and Images Ritchie Birnie

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