Preluding their official album launch gig that night at Sneaky Pete's, My Latest Novel treated us with the time honoured tradition of the in-store performance. Avalanche Records was filled to overflowing with perhaps half a dozen pleasant and polite fanatics who knew each and every song like it was the back of their refrigerator.
In fact the smooth indie-flavoured folk music of the quintet, shortened to a four-piece for this performance, is ideal for stripping down, as much of their music already involves acoustic guitars and fiddle.
The singer, a little uncomfortable without a microphone and instead clutching a can of lager like a security blanket, sang introspective songs in a small but rich voice. His understated subtlety was juxtaposed well with the energy of the louder, confident vocals of the guitarist, who is short in comparison and ginger, and may have felt he needed to make up for it by stealing the show. A feat he would have just as easily achieved with his guitar work, with which he exquisitely shouldered all the dynamics and moods of the songs.
The violin provided a meandering counterpoint to the melody, with smooth strokes and some occasional backing vocals. And the tapestry was weaved together by some rich chords from the standing-accordion at the back. If it wasn't for this final touch, the music may not have had the Cure-like magic touch.
The tune worth checking out is probably 'Dragonhide', and the finest moments of the set came when the whole band were singing in harmony.
Of course this miniature set is just a snapshot of the bands full live potential, but the intimate poster-lined walls provided an interesting view on the Greenock band.
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