Twin Atlantic, Key of Atlas, Colly Strings
The Speakeasy in Queen's University is all ages for a night and there is a noticeable divide between the punters; youngsters right up front at the stage, and the older guys standing at the back of the venue. It's good to see that such a mix of people are coming out to see Twin Atlantic, proving that they have come far since getting together 4 years ago.
First up are Colly Strings who are confident and really know how to get the crowd rallied up. The band-to-crowd communication is amazing and the guys look like they are having the time of their lives, which makes it more enjoyable to watch. New single 'Take a Good Look' goes down a wee treat and guitarist Richard throws out free copies of the CD as the crowd squabble over them, wanting in on the free music action. Richard, however, should definitely stick to the music and steer away from sport; his attempts at throwing are slightly rubbish with CDs hitting off the ceiling. 'Teddy Robinson' is the perfect way to finish the set off with a little mosh pit forming and lots of dancing, making Colly Strings a tough act to follow.
Next we have Key of Atlas and there are hopes that they will be able to entertain the crowd as well as Colly Strings, however they don't pull it off just quite as well. The venue is filling up nicely and the band look hyped and obviously thrilled at the opportunity that has been given to them. There's plenty of singing along, but it isn't the best set from the guys, despite the band and crowd obviously enjoying themselves.
Twin Atlantic take to the stage, opening with last single 'Edit Me' and the crowd go mad for it. Singer Sam McTrusty looks taken back by the reaction and has a massive grin on his face. They have come a long way since their last show in Mandela Hall with a younger, more enthusiastic crowd and have become a lot stronger as a band - perhaps their support slot with Blink-182 has also helped. 'Caribbean War Syndrome' sticks out, with Sam's vocals deserving a lot of credit, whilst old favourites 'Old Grey Face' and 'You're Turning into John Wayne' go down extremely well.
A spot of Scottish rivalry comes across when someone throws a pair of sunglasses on stage. Sam says "You must have us mistaken for Glasvegas downstairs - they're the only band that will wear sunglasses on stage". He then threw them to the back of the stage and carries on playing.
It's a little annoying that new album 'Free' doesn't come out until 5 days later but the new songs showcased are sounding promising. They play everything the fans want to hear, and also fit in a lot of newbies. A successful night for the Scottish rockers - let's hope they come back soon!