The Lumineers are a mild-mannered big deal in the inoffensive vein of Mumford & Sons. They must be – they have just knocked Adele off the top of the album charts with their absent-mindedly singalongable indie folk pleasantries.
The Lumineers | Rating: ** | Barrowland, Glasgow
Unlike the Mumfords, this Denver-based outfit have yet to enter their leather trousers phase. There was no stadium straining in their music; instead, there were occasional instances of close harmony singing, mandolin wielding and moody woodwind to add much-needed texture to their pallid sound. At one point, frontman Wesley Schultz donned a natty hat for a busker’s breeze through Bob Dylan’s Subterranean Homesick Blues, then it was back to the church praise band stage presence.
Until recently, The Lumineers were best known for one jaunty little ditty. Now they have other hooklines for the fans to sing their hearts out to, and Ho Hey was dispensed with early in the set to much jollification in the crowd. But there were noticeable dips throughout the show when the pace dropped on the songs and the superficial party spirit started to evaporate.
Schultz appeared to dig deeper on a couple of crooner troubadour numbers, aiming for the louche swagger of Alex Turner and the tender vulnerability of Jeff Buckley. He is still a long way off their dynamic artistry and will probably never come close to their charisma, but at least he is figuring out how to write music that draws in as well as lifts up the listener.