Academy 2, Birmingham, 29/05/2006
The Wedding Present
Line up: The Wedding Present/Scarling I was worried when I walked into the Academy.
Having previously seen Volcano! the night before and noticed the sound engineer make a massive balls up of proceedings, my expectations were a little dashed when I saw him preparing the desk here.
After an hour or so of waiting (doors were at seven), Scarling decide it’s a great time to grace us with their presence. Coming across as a darker, indie orientated version of Heart (kind of expected as they were formed by ex-members of Jack Off Jill), they seem slightly muted as they sleep walk through muddy chords and slight over distortion. The songs in their set seem to merge together, at some points it’s hard to tell if they’re playing different tracks at all. Not being overly impressed by their performance I swan off to the bar and wait.
After another half-hour the lights dim down low, heralding the arrival of The Wedding Present. While some people might argue that it’s just Cinerama in disguise, the band have always hung from the shoulders of David Gedge, and tonight belongs to him. Playing what seems to be a greatest hits set, the band are without equal and manage to hold their own with ease. Repeated calls for “Brassneck” eventually pay off (“What was that? Plastic?” - David Gedge), as does the comedy factor of watching men in their late 30’s jump around like toddlers on sugar highs, winding up 30 minutes of pure brilliance.