LOVE & MONEY GLASGOW ROYAL CONCERT HALL ***
"WE'RE a Glasgow band," declared Love & Money's singer and songwriter James Grant. Respectful applause rippled out from the sold-out audience, most of them evidently fellow Glaswegians of a similar age, all glad of the chance to stroll down memory lane to the 1980s, when this band took the sound of the city to the rest of the country. "I wasn't really sure about this as a venture," pointed out Grant of this one-off Celtic Connections reunion date, "but I'm absolutely f***ing loving it now."
The feeling was mutual, with whoops of familiarity for even long-forgotten album tracks (the set comprised the records Strange Kind of Love and Dogs in the Traffic in their entirety) and eyes-closed, almost prayerful singing along with hits like Hallelujah Man and the crisp, upbeat soul stylings of Jocelyn Square. The band sounded excellent through the gospel-styled bleakness of Pappa Death, the joyfulness of Lips Like Ether, You're Not the Only One's tender duet between Grant and his female backing singer and the gritty blues of Razorsedge.
There were also agreeable amounts of banter from Grant, with some genuinely funny gags ("the record company promoted Winter by dumping three tons of snow outside Radio 1 – it wouldn't have been snow I'd have dumped") and a moment of real feeling when he dedicated Walk the Last Mile to late band member Bobby Paterson. It's a set which would have convinced old-timers and newcomers, and hopefully it will turn out to be something more than a one-off.