NOTHING BUT THIEVES // BARROWLAND BALLROOM, GLASGOW

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Nothing But Thieves might be billed as an alternative rock band, however, the release of their second LP, “Broken Machine” proved they have got a good deal more depth than that might suggest. 

PICTURE BY ALAN WHITFIELD

To further promote “Broken Machine” and October’s four tracks, “What Did You Think When You Made Me This Way”, they are out on a string of dates across the UK and Europe.  Tonight they play the famous Barrowland Ballroom in Glasgow to a sold-out crowd.

They kick things off as expected with the lead track from their latest LP, “I Was Just a Kid”.  An ear-worming mix of thick and powerful bass and restrained vocals are very deliberately punctuated with jagged guitars and relentless percussion.  This is breathlessly followed by “Ban All Music” and “Wake Up Call” which sets the pace nicely before introducing new track, “Take This Lonely Heart” with its disarming slow burn and deliberate build-up.  Despite being this early in the set they have seamlessly mixed tracks from all three studio releases and they all work really well together.  

After grabbing his acoustic guitar, Mason gives this packed ballroom a chance to catch their collective breath before “’ I’m Not Made by Design” brings the tempo back up.  For the first time tonight, I am probably able to draw comparisons and there is definitely more than a hint of influence from Led Zeppelins “Kashmir” laid in the foundations of this guitar riff.

“Trip Switch” and the quirky “Number 13” are highlighted for me, the latter showing a completely different side to the band.  At times a heavier side I hadn’t heard before and it was during this I understood the “alternative rock” tag they had been given.  It was a bold and boot-stomping in its execution.

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