Despite being chart regulars for most of the nineties, Gun are one of those bands time seems to have forgotten. However since reforming in 2008, albeit with a much changed line up, they not only continue to tour but record new material, and this tour was in support of newly released album ‘Frantic’, their second full-length set of new material in that period.
Attendances at previous Gun shows in the capital since they reformed have been disappointing but this time there was a reasonably full crowd at the Underworld. They witnessed a healthy mix of new songs and the classics that made them, oddly for a rock band, a stronger singles than albums act.
Opening with ‘Let It Shine’ from the new album, ‘Don’t Say Its Over’ with the crowd taking over a chant in the middle and a solo from second guitarist Johnny McGlynn and breakthrough hit ‘Better Days’ were warmly received, while ‘Money’ was another timely reminder of what strong songs they had.
The Underworld is not the most salubrious venue at the best of times and the lighting here, whether by the bands choice or not, was even poorer than usual. Neverthless the up side was that it created a raw, dingy club atmosphere to offset the dangerously poppy nature of new material like ‘One Wrong Turn’ and ‘Hold Your Head Up’.
Former bassist Dante Gizzi is now the frontman with a casual manner, at one stage hands dug deep in the pocket of his leather jacket, but a decent voice and even sounds reasonably compatible with original singer Mark Rankin on the oldies. The Gallus album got a bigger share than usual with ‘Welcome To The Real World’ and a slightly dreary ‘Higher Ground’ before the title track from the new album.
However ‘Taking On The World’, a song that for me shows the heart on sleeve passion that the best Scottish acts have always brought to their work, saw the crowd take over the singing and the set came to the boil nicely with ‘Inside Out’, complete with a snatch of the Police’s ‘So Lonely’, their rocked up cover of ‘Word Up’ and ‘Steal Your Fire’ having those of us at the front singing out and punching the air to their hooks and simple but memorable riffs from the baseball capped Jules Gizzi.
For the first encore they showcased lead off single ’Labour Of Life’, which like other new songs came over a bit less fey in the live setting, before finishing with of ‘Shame On You’, when as the U2 style intro went into the chorus a group of people pushed forward to pogo in the middle and relive the old days.
With this good mix of old and new, Gun proved that they are an unfairly neglected act. Their peak days may be over but a Gun gig is still an enjoyable, and not wholly nostalgic, night out.
Review and Photos by Andy Nathan
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Featured Albums w/c 25 January 2021 (Mon-Fri)
09:00-12:00 ART OF ILLUSION X Marks The Spot (AOR Heaven)
12:00-13:00 THE DEAD DAISIES Holy Ground (SPV)
14:00-16:00 TED & MAJELLA Divine Timing (indie)
Power Plays w/c 25 January 2021 (Mon-Fri)
THE WEDDING PRESENT We Should Be Together (Scopitones)
MIDNITE CITY Crawlin’ In The Dirt (Roulette Media)
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ALEX JAMES BRIERLEY Go With The Flow (indie)
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