Tonight was the first show of a short showcase tour for Gun’s new album ‘Frantic’ which is set for release on the 23rd March, a review of which can be found elsewhere on GRTR! The show was a Planet Rock promoted gig and they had brought along a couple of warm up acts to provide a value for money package.
Wild Lies had come and gone by the time I made the venue but Aaron Keylock was in full flow. Aaron may only be in his teens but his blues playing hints at a visit to Robert Johnson’s crossroads. Backed by a solid rhythm section the blues power trio rocked their way through an entertaining set.
Vocally Keylock isn’t the strongest but this will develop with time, his guitar work though is first rate as is his stage presence. The set was rounded off with ‘Give Me A Chance To Explain’ which was a full-on 12 bar blues rocker which drew a huge cheer from an appreciative crowd. With more dates scheduled and a slot at the Download Festival the rise of Aaron Keylock as a major blues player is a safe bet, he certainly has the talent.
Gun have been there, seen it and bought several T-shirts over the course of their career. Having reformed in 2012 with Dante Gizzi taking over vocal duties the band have reaffirmed themselves as one of Scotland’s finest rock outfits. The band took to the stage to the familiar strains of Alex Harvey and the crowd belting out ‘Delilah’ before kicking the evening off with ‘Let It Shine’, the opening track on the forthcoming album.
The Gizzi brothers looked ecstatic to be back on stage as did the rest of the band and the near capacity crowd were happy to have them back. The band headed for more familiar ground next with a double of ‘Something To Believe’ and ‘Don’t Say It’s Over’ complete with mass crowd participation.
The band had played three nights at King Tut’s in Glasgow at the tail end of 2014 playing a full album each night. According to Dante replaying the ‘Gallus’ album had been the highlight of the three night run. It only seemed right then that two tracks from that album followed in the shape of ‘Borrowed Time’ and ‘Freedom’ both of which went down a storm.
‘One Wrong Turn’ brought things back up to date, I was a bit scathing in my album review as I felt that the band had played things a bit on the safe side but live the new tracks had much more punch which was good to hear.
Highlight of the night for me though was a trip back to the first album with an excellent rendition of the title track ‘Taking On The World’ with the crowd taking the lead vocal. That was followed by ‘Frantic’, the title track from the new album, and to be honest the gulf between the quality of the two tracks was marked.
From there though it was party time with a run of Gun’s greatest hits including ‘Money’, ‘Better Day’, ‘Inside Out’, ‘Word Up’ and ‘Steal Your Fire’. With time short, and the band threatened with the plug being pulled, there was only time for two more songs. ‘Labour Of Love’, the first track released from ‘Frantic’, which has a great chorus and then things were rounded off with a rocking version of ‘Shame On You’ much to the crowd’s delight.
If Gun were nervous about returning to the live arena it certainly didn’t show and tonight proved to be a triumph. In fact the only problem tonight was a rather over active smoke machine which regularly engulfed the stage much to Dante’s annoyance. A smoking performance all round then.
Review and photos by David Wilson
UK Blues Broadcaster of the Year Pete Feenstra presents a weekly show on Get Ready to ROCK! Radio, Tuesdays at 19:00 BST (GMT+1) as part of a five hour blues rock marathon. This show was first broadcast on 14 July.
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