“Here we are, we start in the middle, here we are we start again”
Rain, equestrian Duke Of Wellington statue with a cone on its head, The Clockwork Orange, The Waverley and now John Knox Sex Club at Stereo, the list of Glasgow institutions is certainly on the rise.
It’s not that far fetched! Having played effortlessly for years, folks are FINALLY catching up to the hype.
Playing in support of their ridiculously brilliant new album (don’t take my word for it, read ravechild’s review) ‘Oh wow! Must be the devil’ John Knox played their spiritual venue of Stereo for their Glasgow Launch.
Starting off with even more new material, ‘Bar-Bar’ is an unusual and surprising opener for JKSC, a slightly more tame start to their show but the new music still soars as high as previous material.
It also points towards an organic growth towards song writing in their arsenal with a richer, fuller sound.
’Ashes’ is up next and again, a slower tempo introduction, it’s noteworthy that JKSC are renowned for their live performances and tonight is no different, but tonight is a focused band determined to highlight the quality of the songs.
It’s not long before the finale of ‘Ashes’ kicks in with the bands energy being tactual, palpable and glaring the audience now starts to hit its stride.
It’s funny mentioning and highlighting the significance of the audience, but I have always felt they play a huge part of a JKSC gig.
Looking around on a horrid, wet Thursday night there is nothing but predominant joy littering the audience.
From the friendliest mosh pit down the front to reconciled friends hugging and laughing, no matter what gig it is, you know it’s John Knox by the sense of hope and community.
Fan favourite ‘Kiss The Dirt’ is played unerringly apt with everyone singing along.
Set highlights include the contrasting ‘Minotaur’ and ‘Hard Days’, both songs distinctively JKSC anthems, one being a pointedly declaration of intent and the other a commiserating call to arms.
They are surprisingly appropriate considering societal developments, the introduction to ‘Hard Days’ has to be seen live.
There’s not a band in the Scottish scene that can rival the ferocious energy of JKSC live, in fact there’s not a band in the Scottish scene that can match JKSC, especially the Glasgow scene.
Original, inspiring, uplifting, prophetic and morose, they seem to tick every box for a lot of people, they entertain and inspire you to ruminate all while blowing your ears playing live. Its quite hard to be so effusive about a band playing live.
Especially now I am older now and supposed to be ridiculously cynical about live music now (maybe I already was earlier in the article?) but JKSC deserve every plaudit they receive.
If you haven’t seen them live, I suggest you rectify that at their nearest convenience, there certainly feels like hard days to come but attending a JKSC concert there’s not a chance I will enter those days feeling alone.
Words: Andrew Melrose
Photos: Angela Canavan