Review: Glasvegas

Glasvegas, ‘Glasvegas’: Aidin Vaziri | So, you see, James Allan cheated on his girlfriend, and the whole thing has become a bit of a mess. She’s hurt. He’s paranoid. And the only thing that can possibly make anyone feel better at this point is a barrage of guitars turned up to 11. “Let the raining teardrops rain down on me tonight,” the Glasvegas singer wails in his thick Scottish burr as his group tears into the emotional snowstorm that heralds “It’s My Own Cheating Heart That Makes Me Cry.” From there, the song turns into a litany of self-hatred and self-doubt as our hero catalogs empty one-night stands, ineffective drug trips and, well, this: “I’m feeling so guilty about the things I said to my mum when I was 10 years old.” If you’re not in a puddle on the floor by the second verse, feel free to cannonball off the next bridge – you’re already dead. That’s not even the rawest moment on this Glasgow four-piece’s ravishing first album, a place where Phil Spector-style tom-toms and primitive rock ‘n’ roll chords collide with jangly guitars and Allan’s soulful confessions. Throughout, the Joe Strummer look-alike and former professional football player operates without a filter, bringing the same gut-wringing intensity to a song about being abandoned by his father (“Daddy’s Gone”) as he does to one about his favorite social worker (“Geraldine”). And while the band could use a few more shiver-worthy melodies, this is a hell of a start.

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