Stone Broken @ G2, Glasgow Mar02

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Stone Broken @ G2, Glasgow

 

Stone Broken @ G2, Glasgow

I was always going to be at this show but when the support bands were announced I felt the rock gods were looking down on me. This three band line up is pretty close to perfect.

The Bad Flowers have an underground following that is growing by the day. It was word of mouth that brought them to my attention and so I was really looking forward to this one. My be all and end all for a band in in the live setting. Just like tonight’s headliners I knew they were good on record but it was all about the performance when I finally saw them on stage.

I am happy to say just like the first time I saw Stone Broken this band blew me away. They have a groove all of their own, a deep bluesy Rock,n,Roll that is feelgood through and through. This three piece just swagger Classic rock and they drag it into the here and now.

With songs as ass kicking as “City Lights”, “Hurricane” and “Thunder Child” rockers of any age will be in heaven. These tunes could get the eldest of us guitar orientated enthusiasts out of their wheelchairs and right at the front of stage.

These boys opened proceedings with gusto and with an already packed hall they done their damnedest to grab as many new fans as possible and I ended up leaving with a shiny new red vinyl for my collection(man I love the fact that vinyl is back and there is no better way to listen to a band like The Bad Flowers).

From one live show I am happy to state for the record this band will make it, they will take on support slots that will lead to headline shows, festivals and eventually venues the size they deserve. What an introduction to a band and what a way to start the night.

Still hyped up from the openers I realise Jared James Nicholls is up next. I first saw this band support Glen Hughes in the bigger hall above us. I knew what I was getting and I could not wait. I spoke to a few people tonight who were here just for them(and yes, they loved the other bands). I cannot believe we have to wait for them to tag along as support as they could fill a hall easily. Lets face it, this man is huge in the states and with his crazy assed guitar playing and incredible songs it makes for sheer joy.

The Canadian takes blues and rocks the hell out of it. As I said I have only seen the man support which always means a way too short set. Tonight we get eight songs all kicked off with “Last Chance” from new release Black Magic and listen to that guitar as it kicks in, is there any better way to start your set. The song made me think of Glen Hughes so maybe the old vet rubbed off on him.

We then shoot through some classics with the likes of “Can You Feel It” in which I am sure they had everyone singing. The man himself is so down to earth and humble, he is a beer drinker and just feels like one of your mates and maybe that is why he grabs you form the stage(it may also be something to do with his outstanding ability).

In new song “Gun” you can feel the southern sun on your back, you can see the porch with the fireflies buzzing around and you can taste the moonshine. As if to add to that feeling we close on “Mississippi Queen” his set closer for a long time and man can he rip that apart. As the band walks off I am just nodding my head, yes, these guys are very special.

Have you ever followed a band and actually notice a complete shift, a moment when everything you thought about them was unfolding before your eyes? Tonight was that night for me. Stone Broken sold out this venue tonight as they have done with some other shows on this “Ain’t Always easy” tour.

I spent the majority of this show at the back(which is unheard of) but it gave me a chance to soak up how far this band has come in a short time. It seems a long time ago since I first saw them at the much smaller Hard Rock Cafe, a night where you could just walk up to the front of the stage. The words Stone Broken were not on many people’s tongues back then but tonight there was not a space in this crowd. I felt very proud but I also felt I was having to let go of what I had. I have to share this band with the world now but I suppose I need to take some of that blame as I have written a multitude of glistening reviews and they have been my go to band when anyone wants to know about a new band to watch out for.

Funnily between me thinking that and writing this review the band announced their first tour stateside and I had to admit to having a huge smile on my face and I know in all certainty that this was what the band were waiting for, that is the market which will break them beyond even what I could imagine and no one deserves it more. This band works their asses off, Rich packed in his job to focus on the band, he took a huge gamble and now it is payback time.

After all this praise lets get to some jovial criticism. The crowd was a bit more subdued tonight, the reason behind that is touring an album that isn’t out yet. Add that to touring their debut for two years and most of us knowing every lyric means you will have a tough ask right off the bat.

The band start with new track “ Heartbeat Away” and instantly I knew something wasn’t right. When you have seen this band as many times as I have you just know. First I thought it was maybe the sound, then it was because I was in the photo pit but when I stepped back it was evident Rich was struggling with his voice but hats off to him he told the crowd straight away and it also showed what this means to the band to keep playing at all costs.

As much as his voice was not on top form he carried off the show with ease. The rest of the band stepped up and ensured you had plenty of other things to focus on. Robin is smiling and causing drum deaths at the back. Chris is posing for centre spread in guitar monthly and Kieron is up front, hiding in C02 bursts.

Another new song in “Doesn’t Matter” is up next with it’s gritty riff and 80s hair metal huge sound before we get back to All In Time and “Stay All night”. The new songs are slotting in well and having already heard the album I know there are some belters on there, some real radio friendly songs and once this band hits the states and the radio stations pick up on these it is all she wrote people.

Since we are talking USA the track “Home” was written for that country. This has to be a single release for when they hit stateside as it will take off like fireflies in the deep south. It is funny, I am already saying goodbye to these guys before it has all unfolded but I suppose that is just following a pattern as I knew that first gig they were meant for better things.

The rest of the show was just like every Stone Broken show. Sheer class. On “Wait For you” it was left to rich and an acoustic guitar to bring in the bigger riff and tonight that might have been a mistake as Rich’s voice did struggle a bit on some notes but that is me nit picking. This was a show that beckons the bands future. After selling out tonight the big hall beckons, a stage they played with Glen Hughes and that realisation alone should hit home hard…a legend of this business playing a hall that you are going to headline and in the not too distant future outgrow.

Yes, tonight was special for me and sometimes it is good to recognise a moment as it happens. As the lights come on the crowd to meet the band grows and is almost around the hall. The merch stand is doing a blistering trade and as that money is handed over just picture how you are putting it straight into the bands pockets to enable them to take on this business and win. Rock needs a new set of rock stars and the UK is going to be the place they come from, just like the 70s Stone Broken are going to emerge at the forefront and with the amount of amazing bands we have it could well be the well breaking.

Images and words Ritchie Birnie

 

 

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