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It’s heartening to note that seven albums in to their career Scottish rock band Mogwai are showing no signs of mellowing into old age or resting on their laurels. Many bands of their vintage might play it safe by relying on crowd pleasers from their hefty back catalogue, tonight however over half the set is drawn from new album Hardcore Will Never Die, But You Will. It’s a sign of the band’s continued invention and musical dexterity that few would have been left hankering after personal favourites. On the likes of recent single Rano Pano and jubilant closer Mexican Grand Prix (featuring vocals from sometime violinist Luke Sutherland) there was a real momentum to the performance causing mass nodding of mostly aging heads. Despite the strength of the new material it was during the old favourites that Mogwai really achieved lift off. Helicon 1, Christmas Steps and Mogwai Fear Satan were all greeted rapturously by the majority of the audience. There were however a small faction who chose the end of the blissful Helicon 1 to converse rather loudly about a number of subjects which were obviously of rather more importance to them than the rest of us, for which they earnt the invitation from front man Stuart Braithwaite to ‘pop off to the toilet, you rude wankers’. This minor annoyance, added to the usual problems with gigs at the Academy (poor view, bad sound, refreshments that leave a little to be desired) took the shine off what was would have been another triumphant Mogwai gig.

Words: Jamie Atkins
Photo: Jass the Bass via Flickr