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Belfast crowds can be a fickle bunch, but in the right settings, there can be a passion and energy in a Belfast crowd that really represents the deep music roots this city has.
Last night’s Gifted showcase was an interesting contrast to the gig the night before; (the “secret” Topman sponsored show which featured Jape), where patrons were much more interested in being seen than engaging in the music. The two sides of Belfast’s musical coin, if you will, two nights in a row. Last night put the good side well and truly on display.
We got to there right after A Plastic Rose had taken the stage and despite a thin crowd and guitar tuning problems, they were tighter and more tuneful than I remembered. Jackson Cage put on a rollicking display of Modern American Country, something there just is not a lot of round these parts.
But by the time General Fiasco took the stage there was no doubt who punters were most excited about on this bill. Andrew and I bumped into a few label heavy-hitters (Capitol records in the Empire?) who were in serious scouting mode about the General – and you could see why. Tight riffs, great look and a drummer every bit reminiscent of Fyfe Ewing, driving the whole band along like a train of horses with pounding, solid beats. Ed Zealous again left a bad taste in my mouth – I’ll be avoiding them whenever possible.
I can’t remember the last time there was electricity in the room like that. Overt enthusiasm is not a particularly well known Belfast triat – Have you ever been blown away by a bands ability to bring out the best in a Belfast crowd? Who and where?