Friday, 17 June 2011

pains of being pure at heart @ the arches,

Last time Wake the President supported Pains of Being Pure at Heart in Glasgow, the former’s debut was only a few months old; two years later, it’s time to showcase its forthcoming successor. On tonight’s evidence, the band has corn-fed existing strengths and added moxie, rousing Potus not with a gentle nudge but an almighty clatter.

The headliners have already taken the sophomore album plunge, and the unfolding performance confirms they’ve successfully sidestepped any would-be slump. Nothing lifted from Belong jars when set against Young Adult Friction et al, but the newer material nonetheless carries a distinct charge: brighter, bolder and evidencing sharpened song-writing skills. Beneath surface noise they wring fresh excitement from decades-old inspirations, with the likes of Heavens Gonna Happen Now a nigh-perfect refinement of their talents.

Closing the main set with This Love Is Fucking Right, they re-emerge almost immediately to append one final slice of textbook indie-pop and invite the Arches for a post-set White Russian or two. There’s no attempt at any pre-encore ‘will they/won’t they come back on’ nonsense – a lack of pretence neatly indicative of their unfussy aesthetic more broadly.

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