Gig review: Harry and the Hendersons, Glasgow

Harry and the Hendersons. Picture: Facebook
Harry and the Hendersons. Picture: Facebook
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ONLY fractionally less hairy than the sasquatch star of their 1980s comedy film namesake, Harry and the Hendersons started their 2014 in shaky style at this King Tut’s New Year’s Revolution show.

Harry and the Hendersons - King Tut’s, Glasgow

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“New Year, new song,” stated singer/guitarist Stuart Neil, introducing a satisfying, if fairly disposable, three-part harmony-laced country-folk opener about running away to join a Peruvian flute band.

So-titled after another of their three co-lead vocalists Harry Mulvenna – who stalked the stage booming his baritone into a retro grill microphone – the young Glaswegian six-piece last year became the latest band to receive the backing of Stow College’s student-run label Electric Honey, which has helped give a start in life to some key Scottish artists, from Belle & Sebastian to Biffy Clyro. Harry and the Hendersons have some distance to go to become a success along those lines, but there were flashes of promise here, in the pastoral daze of New York’s Lost Island of Lepers and Give Me Proof’s shuffling, upbeat ode to slackerdom.

Parallels might be made with fellow Glaswegians Kassidy or Dundee’s Anderson, McGinty, Webster, Ward and Fisher – two other bands updating the rootsy, harmonic 60s/70s sound of The Band and Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young et al, with the shears-fearing look to match. Their songwriting mostly remains insubstantial, and confidence levels need to come on a bit, but a moody blues-rock closer in which Neil professed worry for his “heavy soul” hinted at greater depths to their craft to come.