Review: Dan Baird & Homemade Sin – 02 ABC Glasgow

OK, here goes. I am going to hit you with a few truths before we get down to this gig:
Truth 1: I have to admit to having ignored Dan Baird of late. Do not get me wrong, I have got all the albums stacked up nicely on the iPod, but back in the ’80s I was a massive Georgia Satellites fan. I followed the band all round this island of ours, and I tell you right now, I was never disappointed. No two shows were the same, and they were the only band I ever saw rip up a set list and jam for two hours solid. During those hair metal times they were a shining light. They had no heirs or graces, they could not care less about pyros, or hairspray, for that matter. This may have been their downfall, in as far as MTV cared, but for me, I never missed them, and I am glad to be back in that atmosphere tonight.
Truth 2: The sound tonight is pretty shady. The bass is way too loud, and poor Dan is recovering from a cold, which you can hear, but, and this is a big but, no one in this venue could care less. Dan was never about precision or crystal clear sound, he was, and is, about the groove, end of story. This comes from his own mouth as he introduces a song saying ”we have only played this song twice… and we fucked it up both times, so let’s see how we get on tonight”. This sums up what you are going to get from these guys.
Now the truth is sorted, let’s get to the gig.
There is no support tonight to make way for a near two hour set, a set crammed with all manner of songs from solo to the Satellites. We get meandering jamming, quality guitar work, and solid drumming, from someone who should maybe be taking it a bit easier… he put me to shame.
The guys stroll out onto the stage, no build up, no hurrah, and plug in. Dan has the grey top hat on. It does look a bit misplaced on his head. With a worn out t-shirt on, it kind of looks like this good old boy was in getting a wedding fitting, panicked, and ran out forgetting it was on his head… but he thought he would just wear it anyway.
The band’s chemistry is awesome to watch. They work so well together, with no egos to be seen anywhere on that small, and very badly lit stage. We see all guitarists take turns singing and they ain’t half bad either. The thing that makes the show so individual is the joy on each one of their faces. They are not going through the motions, they are not just plodding through the songs and moving on to the next city. These guys genuinely love what they do and they are doing it with their mates.
It may just be me, or this job I do, but I do spend a bit of time watching the audience response quite a lot at live shows, and tonight they were as happy as the band, if not more. They may not have been of the younger persuassion, they may have not been too sober, but these people have seen some amount of bands, of that I can vouch without doubt, and they are less likely to suffer fools gladly. You get to a certain age, especially in Glasgow, when you know what you like and if you do not get what you want, you soon let people know. This is not a town built on that British etiquette of not complaining. When it comes to our music, you do not mess us about. I have seen venues empty on bad performances, or even worse, when a band is so far up their own arse they think they can say what they want and no one will care.
This crowd were entertained in that good old fashioned way…the sweaty, work your ass off, knuckle down and hammer out the tunes to the best of your ability way. Ability is something each individual member on that stage had in spades. Sheer class, and a wonder to behold. It had a different vibe to most gigs you will witness in this day and age. There was hardly any speakers, no lights, no flash of any kind. They could have been playing your local, or even busking, for all the show they had with them, but I walked out of that show with a smile on my face, and a knowledge that I will not miss another Sin gig in this town again. I can think of no better way to spend two hours of my life.
Thank you guys.
Review  Ritchie Birnie
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