Gig review: The Strypes, Glasgow

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Stop the clocks. It may be 2013 but, for a frenetic hour in King Tut’s, it might as well have been 1963, as a tight gang of Irish teens stormed through a nosebleed set of rhythm’n’blues standards and spot-the-difference originals with single-minded fidelity.

The Strypes - King Tut’s Wah Wah Hut, Glasgow

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Though musicians have been playing this repertoire in the back rooms of pubs for decades, the Strypes have been turning heads with their youthful chutzpah and energy, and now look set to become a big deal. Keeping it old school, this was the second of two sold-out sets on the same day – the first was an over-14s show for their peers, while this one appealed to a much wider constituency. Call it the Jake Bugg factor.

The four-piece are all 16, 17, but look younger still. Bassist Pete O’Hanlon was probably being bullied last week for his shaggy hair and old man’s music taste, but here he was ruling the school with a bravado display of virtuosity. Guitarist and MC Josh McClorey is a little guitar hero, pure and simple.

The Yardbirds quickly emerged as their most obvious benchmark in a repertoire which included Got Love If You Want It, I’m A Man and You Can’t Judge A Book By The Cover. They have yet to put their own stamp on the tradition – maybe that will come, or maybe that’s not their game. But were the Rolling Stones as clued up about their musical influences at that tender age? Who knows – they formed at the grand old age of 19.

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