SCOUTING FOR GIRLS | LIVE REVIEW
Tramshed, Cardiff, Sat 7 Dec
Taking the plunge into the mayhem that was Scouting For Girls at Tramshed was equal parts throwback and greatest hits show. The wide diversity of age in the full-house crowd was a true testament to the relatability of the band’s brand of indie that has been rather aptly described as ‘Mondeo Pop’.
The Dunwells, a pair of brothers from Leeds, opened the night as the only support act. Opening acts can be very inconsistent, but they challenged this assumption and delivered a tremendous set. With their anthemic, summer-tinged indie-rock and charm, their performance was intimate and respectable and was lapped up by the packed crowd, whose participation was unrivalled. For what their music lacked in originality, the brothers made up for with charisma and talent.
By the time Scouting For Girls opened their set with the track Grown Up, the crowd was electric. The longevity of the band clearly has worked in their favour, as the room religiously knew each chorus. Although it was noticeable that there was just a little disconnect between the boyish lyrics about crushing over girls and the age of the rockers on stage, with lead singer Roy Stride now in his forties. While the band’s music won’t win any awards for originality, with most of the lyrics rehashing the same old pursuit of a girl, it was certainly relatable.
They may have avoided critical praise like their lives depended on it, but the band are truly in their element live, and it really clicked that this was how the songs were intended to be consumed. Of course, their two biggest hits were very well received, but the track that stood out from the evening was This Ain’t A Love Song, and Stride’s crooning seemed to touch an otherwise euphoric crowd. After a half hearted attempt to try and convince the crowd that they had finished, the London trio re-emerged for a three track encore, finishing on She’s So Lovely. What could have been a weak stab at a greatest hits show from an indie-pop band a little past their prime was fantastic fun.
words ALEX PAYNE