Big Country live; what can I say that hasn’t been said already about these guys? Even without the unique voice of Stuart Adamson they blew the roof off the ABC. Things got off to a bit of a ropey start with the unanticipated appearance of a young support act called something like Firefly or Foetus Fire or Flame Retardant? I’m sure it was something fire related anyway. They had some trouble getting their lead guitarist fired up and I’m sure I heard a few whispers of “isn’t that cute.”

The drummer is just out of shot in the pictures above, but you can just about see him behind his kit on the right. It ‘s a bit of a shame really for the guy, sitting there drumming his heart out on his kit and still being overshadowed by one belonging to Mark Brzezicki. I can’t complain too much about these guys, they did a good job considering that everyone was really there to see the main event. Their musical style didn’t really fit too well with BC, they seemed more of a modern rock band than a guitar rock one. They did their job well though, especially for a small local band plucked from Aberdeen at the last minute and dragged to Glasgow as a support act. The only major complaint I could level at them was the fact that the bass player spent the entire set with his back to the crowd. The lead singer was enthusiastic enough, but he too kept looking into the wings instead of out at the crowd. I guess they were nervous.

When Bruce, Mark and Tony finally walked on stage the audience erupted in a thunderous welcome. I’ve never heard anything like it since their triumphant Farewell gig at the Barrowlands back in 2000. This time you could feel some trepidation in the air. How would the band sound without Stuart? The however band didn’t mess about with an intro or a soliloquy about the past they just blasted straight into Driving to Damascus. Hats off to Tony Butler he’s really come on as a lead singer, he looked and sounded confident as he. The band were clearly enjoying themselves too as they laughed and joked on stage.

Old hits and new tunes followed in smooth crowd pleasing order with Tony and occasionally Bruce acting as lead singer. Their guitar playing and Mark’s frenzied drumming brought back memories of the old Big Country. They sound slightly different. That’s only natural but it’s clear the three guys are back having fun with music again.

The new material was good. I particularly liked You Lift Me Up. It’s stuck in my head and I can’t get it out! I also really enjoyed a new take on an old classic when Bruce sang Republican Party Reptile. It was very different from Stuarts version but in a good way.

Finally the audience went wild and the centre crowd became a bouncing frenzy one last time as the first bars of In a Big Country rang out. Then it was over with a deafening round of applause the band took a bow. Tony’s voice cracked as he thanked the audience and spoke a bit about the late Stuart Adamson and then they were gone.

Thanks to Kat and her quick camera reflexes I’ve managed to upload a quick blast of Steeltown onto YouTube, you can check it out here. My face hurts from smiling, my throat hurts from shouting, my legs ache from bouncing and my ears are ringing. Big Country is back friends, like the Guitar Rock Phoenix.

5 Responses to “BC@theABC”

  1. 1 TehKat perambulator January 1, 2008 at 21:03

    I had to elbow some scary looking bc fans outta the way to get them pics! I had an amazing time though, and no one stole my shoes, and no one squashed me, and tony butler kept grining at you like some over-eager fagin eyeing up a new pickpocket….

  2. 2 MCDOWALL January 2, 2008 at 21:08

    I had the SAME freaky “Tony Butler Starin At Ya” experience when they ploayed at the Assembly Rooms on the “IN THE SCUD” tour!

  3. 3 TehKat perambulator January 5, 2008 at 01:03

    He must be some sort of undercover ayrshire detection unit :S

  4. 4 MCDOWALL January 6, 2008 at 15:32


    Ah hae just read this full article and there are numerous freaky sentences that finish mid rant or start fae thin air!

    Editorial_powah– 😦

  1. 1 Goodbye 2008 « GreyKodiak Trackback on February 10, 2009 at 20:45

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