Into Music Review: The Lockdown Sessions

Act: Various
Venue: Twitch TV
Date:   13 June 2020

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•••••UPDATE•••••
The total raised in support the refugees and asylum seekers in Glasgow was £11,244!
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It really was something to see the hashtag #LoveGlasgowHateRacism trending on Twitter on what turned out to be a monumental day raising much needed funds in support of the Scottish Refugee Council and Refuweegee.

Put together by Glasgow St.Pauli supporters club, this extravaganza ran from 3pm to midnight, featured 40 acts covering a wide range of musical genres as well as some spoken word and poetry.

In many ways this felt like a stay at home festival with an excellently curated line up. Like most festivals, I didn’t manage to catch all the acts but I did see some familiar bands and artists and also some new to me which was a real bonus.

Ferro Solo from Bologna kicked things off with a blistering set (I think it’s safe to say he has no time for his ex-friend and her new partner! You had to be there), before the String Ninjas, an instrumental duo from Belfast brought us excellent interpretations of songs including Bitter Sweet Symphony and Metallica’s Nothing Else Matters. Back to Bologna for the excellent rockabilly punk infusion of The Johnny Clash Project who lit up the screen with their versions of White Riot and Guns Of Brixton.

Falkirk’s very own Media Whores, perhaps the most political Scottish band on the scene at the moment ran through a sharp set including Big Pharma, Do You Think I’m Lying and Las Vegas Of The North. Into Music caught up afterwards to chat with Ally from the band and here is what he had to say:

“We were delighted to take part and play three of our songs in this excellent online festival! A most enjoyable day and friendly festival vibe!

Thanks to all the acts, viewers and the organisers, Gary @GlasgowStPauli and host David Blair. It’s no mean feat to pull it all together online! Well done folks, and to all who helped smash the £5K target, which is currently sitting at over £9K, in aid of the Scottish Refugee Council and Refuweegee!

Love Glasgow Hate Racism, has never been more apt, especially when you see what was happening in London on the same day! Love, warmth, hope and compassion from the bands and viewers, compared to hate and violence from the right. The festival was all done without a grumpy stage manager as well, although we hope to still be able to play at the live gig later this year!”

The Pictish Trail then provided some excellent indie folk to close out the first hour.

A new band to me, Swearing At Motorists from Dayton, Ohio gave a dazzling display of lo-fi rock, very much in the mould of The Pixies and a band I will definitely be checking out some more.

And so it went on with excellent sets provided by the likes of Eugene Kelly (singing about being a dog’s best friend and his lack of prowess in the physical exercise department. Both with his tongue firmly in his cheek). Lloyd Cole who, it could be said has dramatically re-invented his music from the crooning, melodic troubadour of his ’80s incarnation to almost percussive early electronic synth instrumentals on equipment that wouldn’t be out of place in a 1960s Dr.Who sound effects studio. Bryan Tolland, a founder member of Del Amitri before ploughing his own furrow, showed why he is a ‘go to’ for many on the Glasgow music scene. A short, no nonsense and exquisite set. This was followed by Shot Balowski who brought their brand of political punk to the fore. Tensheds with such a distinctive voice, tickled the ivories and grabbed my attention, a real talent. We then had the wonderful Poetry On The Picket Line whose cockney prose was on point and very thought-provoking. The Van T’s served up an excellent cover of The Black Angels’ Don’t Play With Guns.

Shambolics were anything but what their name implies and it was easy to see why Alan McGee has them signed to his label Creation 23. Home$lice were perhaps the highlight of the acts I managed to see, catchy and dreamlike pop tuneage with a hooky guitar that very much reminded me of John Squire at his finest.

The Bluebells served up Happy Birthday (Turn Gold) and The Patriot Game (see Into Creative-produced videos below) before Daniel Meade gave a stunning set, another new act to me but one who has some big hitting songs. Lucy Gaffney was up next, very much in a Sons & Daughters vibe, with a superb cover version of Oasis’ Songbird (full video on YouTube. Seek it out!).

 

Back to Italy and Los Fastidios gave it their all with a clear nod to ska in their songs. She Drew The Gun then provided some politically relevant songs, Something For The Pain, Trouble Every Day before singer Louisa Roach read out Poem. Extremely effective and very powerful.

The Fratellis, Billy Bragg and The Wakes (with an excellent No Human Is Illegal) all gave assured performances before Joe Solo brought matters to a close.

Fantastic music, expertly put together and hugely worthwhile causes in order to help refugees and asylum seekers during the ongoing Covid-19 crisis. All in, fantastic and don’t forget, it’s not too late to donate – the initial £5,000 target was met and at time of writing the revised £10,000 target had also been smashed – you can help make a difference and donate here.

After the event, Into Music caught up with one of the organisers, Gary from Love Glasgow Hate Racism (@GlasgowStPauli) to get his views on the event. Here’s what he had to say:

“This year was our third Love Glasgow Hate Racism event,  however this year was very different from the previous two years.
Our event is usually held in Glasgow QMU to a capacity of around 450 people, however due to the current ongoing Covid-19 crisis, this year’s gig had to be very different, and so the Lockdown Sessions of Love Glasgow Hate Racism was born.
We are delighted with how the ten hour online event went, and an incredible £10,223 has currently been raised online at the time of writing to go towards supporting refugees and asylum seekers in Glasgow, and we also have offline donations to add to tomorrow’s total, so we expect the total to be even more impressive. We are completely overwhelmed by the show of support from people all over the world, racism is systematic to the inhumane asylum process and these funds will help support Scottish Refugee Council  and Refuweegee who support those going through the horror of this system.
A thought on the online gig format itself – while we in no way see this as a substitute to a live gig event, it is definitely an acceptable alternative in times like these. We learned that an online gig helps to create solidarity and connection to a gig no matter where you are in the world and as we also saw, it allows people to still connect with other ‘attendees at the gig’ (we’ve all been there; arms round a stranger a gig, both feeling a connection brought on by the music in front of you) as one of the comments on the online chat was from someone who was ‘just surfing through Twitch and managed to find this event’ – that person stayed for the duration of the event!
It was also a fantastic opportunity for each of the artists to gain new fans as most were playing to a brand new audience. That part in particular I was extremely happy with, as they were bands that I’d been banging on about for a while!
We couldn’t have asked for any more from the event, it exceeded our expectations, and once again a MASSIVE THANK YOU to everyone who watched and donated which can’t have been easy in these current times. Once again, people never fail to amaze. Also a MASSIVE THANK YOU to all the artists who dedicated their time to producing such brilliant sets!
We are already looking forward to next year’s event, but we are hoping for it to be back in that live sweaty gig atmosphere that we all love”.
Gary – Love Glasgow Hate Racism

John Welsh
@welshjb

These videos, produced by Into Creative, featured in the streamed festival…

Links:
@GlasgowStPauli
@scotrefcouncil
@Refuweegee

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