Live review: Arab Strap at Sleazy’s, 17/11/11

I’m not going to insult you by saying how magic or electric the venue is tonight.

The mood, like that of Arab Strap’s music, is warm and comforting.

The major factor in creating this atmosphere is that 60% of the crowd tonight is a guest list of family, friends and old bandmates, the other 40% are all lucky ticket winners.

There is one grey haired 40 something at the door crying as the person on the door and the steward tell him to leave the stair well.

A sad sight, sad thought is that he would be doing the same thing if he had been in the room listening.

Malcolm Middleton on acoustic guitar, Aiden Moffat and drum machine, stripped back from the full band that they had incorporated.

Tonight is far from having the strong dance beats that the recorded versions have, only ‘Don’t Ask Me To Dance’ has a full sounding beat.

The more laid back pulse matches the mellower sounding voice of the present day Aiden Moffat.

This age comes with authority, which is only heightened by numerous reflections on maybe becoming a teacher and telling off some punters who are talking through songs.

The pair rip through the set, showing off that they still possess all the emotive quality.

Personally I wasn’t expecting to be as drawn in and have my feelings raging.

Half way through ‘Piglet’ I am thinking it is the best gig I’ve been too in years.

Arab Strap just has everyone in the palm of their hand, the longer they play the tighter the grip.

By the time Aiden says, “so that was the first big weekend of the summer” everyone is in a collective mindset.

That episode of the Simpsons I bet is still as powerful as ever.

Words: Langdon Alger

The set was recorded and will be available soon, still doesn’t make up for the fact that I wasn’t actually there, but big thanks to ‘Langdon’ on this contribution.


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