Duckworth Lewis Method @ Oran Mor, Glasgow

Whoever thought that a cricket themed novelty band could provide such a poptastic night out?  Certainly the audience here knew what to expect as they created an atmosphere which at times resembled the Rocky Horror Picture Show, with a few folks turning up dressed in cricket whites – although I suspect that the young woman who came as an umpire had American sports in mind when she was putting together her outfit.

The fact that this wasn’t an entirely sold out gig didn’t detract from an entertaining singalong, with Neil Hannon’s vocals surviving a fight with a cold to lead us through tracks from the band’s two albums.

Even as someone who genuinely can’t stand cricket it is difficult not to appreciate the light-hearted nature of Duckworth Lewis Method’s songs, and this was a fun gig.  From the double entendre laden opening of Sticky Wickets to the infectious singalong with Jiggery Pockery and crowd favourite Meeting Mr. Miandad, this was as enjoyable a night as you could expect from a cricket themed act.

The Low Anthem @ The Venue at Oran Mor, Glasgow

One imagines that if there is music to greet you at the gates of Heaven, that music would be played by The Low Anthem.  The Rhode Island five-piece always provide the most sumptuous medley of softly-plucked guitar strings, fragile flute and vocals so hushes at times that they could easily have been from a ghost.

Taking residence this time in the basement Venue at Oran Mor instead of their more recent haunt upstairs (Ben Knox Miller raised some chuckles when he noted that they unloaded their gear upstairs out of habit only to be find “some fucking wedding band had set up) it took some time for the band’s acoustics to settle into the intimate setting, with the rockier sounds of their more recent album, Smart Flesh, becoming lost.  Boeing 737 sounded particularly messy.

But when they found their rhythm, generally when they played songs from What The Crow Brings and Oh My God, Charlie Darwin and when the three of them were huddled together like apparitions at the front of the stage, their sound was encapsulated in its most haunting and harmonic form.  Songs such as Ticket Taker, To Ohio, This God Damn House and To The Ghosts Who Write History Books simply trembled in the delicacy of the playing.

A mesmerising cover of the signature Leonard Cohen song Bird on the Wire was a beautiful and fitting way to end a night which started out slowly, but was even slower by the death.