The upstairs room at the Old Hairdressers tonight plays host to a small art exhibition and live music blend that could not be more detached from the bustling world outside its windows.
The show starts late, deliberately, to give the audience the chance to admire the mixture of acrylic paintings and deep, dark photos of musicians playing in Glasgow that line the walls, but the ambient background music does a good job of setting the mood for the evening.
First to the stage is Left of Venus, a solo project by Redwings guitarist Thomas Campbell and with no introduction or even acknowledgment of the audience, Left of Venus slips effortlessly into his first live performance as a solo artist.
The reverb echoes around the room as he builds his slow, melancholy tracks using loops, drones and even more reverb to a loud crescendo that encompasses everything it touches.
Up next is theapplesofenergy, whose use of echoes, delay and drones is significantly differentiated from Left of Venus’ by the use of a mandolin instead of an electric guitar.
Again his songs build up from a soft and gentle start, with more rises and falls in tempo and volume along the way giving a really deep feel to the sad but beautiful tunes he creates.
The set closes with a quiet, thoughtful melody being fed through the many machines surrounding theapplesofenergy’s feet, coming out distorted and eerie sounding but still in perfect harmony with the surroundings.
Finally comes Tangles, a Glasgow local, whose ambient-style pop continues the reverb-heavy theme of the night.
Although his songs start with the by-now familiar slow and steady build up, Tangles tunes have a more cheery feel to them, with more distinct melodies that the other two performers, and the use of vocals also makes his performance stand out, despite the actual lyrics being indistinct.
The tunes build up to soaring crescendos, immersing the crowd in the music so completely that hardly a sound is made while Tangles plays.
The set is topped off by Left of Venus and theapplesofenergy joining Tangles on stage for a three-guitar collaboration, which ascends to a cacophony of reverb and distortion, then slows and fades down to melodies in harmony, echoing slightly round the room.
Words: Katherine Haig
Photos: Jenny Anderson