To launch their new single ‘In and Out (Of My Head)’, synth pop newcomers, The Insomniac Project give Nice N Sleazy a disco makeover, reimagining the legendary Glaswegian basement as Studio 54 circa-1979.
The sextet (three synth players, bass, drums and guitar) barely manage to squeeze all of their gear on stage, but their patter is entertaining and their retro fascination evokes an era that, while well plumbed by the city’s DJs, has mostly been left alone by live acts.
They’re not quite up to the standard of legendary house bands like Bernie Edwards and Nile Rodgers’ Chic, but if their live sound can catch up with the crisp production on record they’ll be a force to be reckoned with.
Support comes from Dundonians Our Future Glory, a trio whose blaring synth tones bring back bad memories of the nu-rave revival, but whose tune craft is broad and catchy.
They play with the confidence of a young group who drew a big crowd to the new music stages at T in the Park and while their songs are pretty predictable electro pop, their frontman’s energy is infectious.
The focus is on instant gratification, with electronic beats rapidly giving way to soaring choruses, but their lack of sophistication doesn’t hurt their bid to get the evening’s early birds up and dancing.
Tonight’s headliners are a more intriguing proposition: their combination of disco influenced backbeats with live instrumentation is contagious and singer Deborah Lang knows how to belt out big-lunged retro hook.
With three vocalists all taking their turn at the microphone, their arrangements can sometimes feel a little confusing, with hooks arriving delayed or arriving in unsuspecting places, but at their best they’re an immersive night time soundtrack and party starter all in one.
On ‘Parallels’ male and female vocals collide (“it’s time, it’s time for us to change”), while the new single, produced by Lewis Gardner from stratosphere bound synth poppers Prides, could be the catchiest song of the evening.
Make sure you catch you The Insomniac Project up close and personal sometime very soon.
Words: Max Sefton
Photos: TV Eye Photography