The Garage in Glasgow is usually home to some very popular club nights, but tonight was the venue for Ash’s 20th Anniversary celebration of their 1996 album ‘1977’. The nineties alternative rock band from Northern Ireland were on their last tour date to celebrate the anniversary of this record and I must say, choosing The Garage for their venue was an excellent choice.
First onto the stage was the first support act of the night ‘Moses’. The boys from London blew me away from the moment they began their first song. Their energy and enthusiasm was completely unexpected. The band’s frontman, Victor, knew how to work around. He had his foot on the speaker, looked directly at every person in the crowd and started singing to them. Their songs remind me of Blur and Arctic Monkeys, but their sound isn’t a copy. Oh no, their sound is absolutely its own unique sound. They performed tracks from their self titled EP and each member of the band effortlessly got the crowd to sing along, cheer and clap in rhythm to their tracks. It’s always hard for the first band to gear up a crowd for a good night but Moses had no trouble doing so. They have so much potential to follow in Ash’s footsteps and become a household name with their own headliner shows. An absolute joy to watch. I’d go see them about fifteen more times.
Next up, Black Honey. The Brighton based band had a western aesthetic, with the lead singer, Izzy B Phillips, in a cowboy themed outfit with a tiny hat. Their presence was very cool. Confident. They did not introduce their music, they stepped onto the stage, went from track to track without chatting to the audience until near the end of their performance. Their music is a mix between classic country and modern rock. Their music certainly made the audience nod to the beat, but due to their lack of interaction, I felt that they were missing a spark. But don’t get me wrong here, they are a fantastic band and are very talented. I just feel maybe they could’ve pushed a little more to win the audience over. I thoroughly enjoy their music now after searching them up online.
Finally, it was time for Ash to perform. Their entrance was EPIC. It was styled like a rocket launch, with the lights flashing and an ominous voiceover counting down. The crowd roared as the band entered the stage to play their ‘1977’ album, front to back. They began with ‘Lose Control’, a heavy track from the album full of ascending guitar riffs. A perfect track to start of their gig as it brought the audience to life. You could feel the excitement oozing from each crowd member, the energy was electric.
As soon as they finished their first song, the crowd applauded and cheered in such a high volume. This was such an exciting event to be at. The band quickly moved on to their next track, ‘Goldfinger’. As soon as Tim Wheeler began to sing, his microphone and his guitar cut off on several occasions. However, the crowd continued singing along and cheering the band on as they tried to finish the song. The same issues occurred when they played their next song, forcing them to head off the stage for a few minutes, but with such a loyal fanbase, Ash’s crowd did not care too much and were happy to wait for their return. It was only a few short minutes before they were back on and continued rocking The Garage into the night. This was the first time I’ve ever seen Ash perform live and it was an honour to do so. They had such enthusiasm in every track they played and despite the technical issues, they still gave the Glasgow crowd a show they’ll never forget.
Words: Rebecca Brierley
Pictures: Richard Robinson