Review: Fatherson, Liquid Room

It’s been two years since Fatherson released debut album I Am An Island, and judging by the fantastically anthemic quality of the new songs aired at Liquid Room on Friday night (Feb 12), their eagerly-awaited sophomore effort (Open Book) will send them stratospheric when it drops this summer.

From the outset, it was evident that the Kilmarnock trio have returned ready prepared for the arena/festival stage.

They have the tunes, they have the swagger and, most advantageously, they now have the backing of a major label.

Indeed, it’s hard to see how they can fail to be propelled into the big league alongside home-town compatriots Biffy Clyro.

Fatherson’s lead singer and guitarist Ross Leighton told AAA (read the interview here) earlier in the week that he was looking forward to playing Liquid Room more than anywhere else on the band’s current UK tour, because whenever he’s performed there in the past he’s been “taken aback by just how amazingly well you can hear everyone sing”.

Unsurprisingly, the bearded frontman was sporting a huge grin for large parts of this gig as the sell-out crowd sang back the lyrics to his songs.

With killer newbies Lost Little Boys and Always mixed into a set of old favourites from I Am An Island, the progression the band has made with their sound over the past few years was very much in evidence.

The crowd – one of the most vocal and boisterous this reviewer has witnessed in a long time – lapped it up, launching into the old Scottish chant of ‘here we, here we, here we fucking go…’ every time there was the slightest lull in the action. Not that there were many.

Leighton has said in the past that he and his bandmates – bassist Marc Strain and drummer Greg Walkinshaw – can adapt to whatever situation they find themselves in these days, but this was certainly one of their more “full-power, blowing-in-your-face” rock shows.

It may have been a short set, but that was the beauty of it. Always leave them wanting more, as the old adage goes.

Fatherson have long been considered one of the ‘most promising’ young bands in the country, but that can’t be said anymore.
On this kind of form, they can lay strong claim to the title of Scotland’s best band.

Words: Gary Flockhart