Saturday 8 June 2019
As someone who has loved Doves since I caught them supporting Oasis as a teenager, I was devastated when they decided to leave the music scene as a band in 2010. They were, in my opinion, a truly magical live band. Their albums are superb, however, in the live setting they excel.
At the tail end of last year they announced they would be returning from their hiatus and playing for the Teenage Cancer Trust in March. I eagerly awaited news of further dates and was giddy at the announcement of their presence at SWG3 Galvanizers Yard.
In the preceding days to the gig I must have received half-a-dozen emails from the organisers about the predicted weather, with it being an outdoor event. This would not dampen my excitement.
I arrived early to a cloudy and breezy SWG3 in order to see Scottish band Man of Moon, whom I had seen supporting The Twilight Sad at the Barrowlands and was mega impressed then. They have improved even more since that amazing night and look like a band with purpose. Man of Moon have an impressively powerful sound for two people, and fill the yard with a deep sound that has to be admired. I will be going to see them again and you should definitely check them out, they deserve your time.
Now, the main event of the evening. The Galvanizers Yard was swelling to near sold-out and everyone appeared to share the same excitement at what was about to unfold. Poetically, the clouds cleared and a smidgen of sunshine appeared as Jimi, Jez, Andy and Martin took to the stage to a hero’s welcome. Looking older but still full of the same enthusiasm, you could tell it meant a lot to them that their gamble to return to the scene as Doves appeared to be fully supported by the knowledgeable Scottish crowd.
Straight into Firesuite, one of my favourite ever Doves songs, there was a power and a drive from the band. They were back, they were happy, and they hadn’t lost an ounce of quality.
Striding through song after song with their typical Manchester swagger and massive grins, Doves were enjoying their evening. Black and White Town, Words, Last Broadcast, 10:03, Pounding and set-finisher There Goes The Fear all had the crowd bouncing and singing, including a crowd-led pre There Goes The Fear singalong. The 15 songs pass by in an instant.
This return could not have been more triumphant, on a personal note it was an emotional and joyous occasion to see a band that has soundtracked a lot of my adult life return and return with such quality.
The world was a better place with this band in it and now they are back it just got that bit better again. Welcome Back Doves! Scotland rightly loves you.
4. Black and White Town
5. Sea Song
7. Last Broadcast
8. The Outsiders
9. Winter Hill
10. Kingdom of Rust
13. Caught by the River
15. The Cedar Room
16. There Goes the Fear
Stevie HarleyListen to the award-winning A Celtic State of Mind podcast