Casey Lowry / Sneaky Pete’s, Edinburgh | 7th of February

Casey Lowry / Sneaky Pete’s, Edinburgh | 7th of February

A modest gathering of souls, brave enough to face the lingering breath of winter, mill around the bar at Sneaky Pete’s awaiting their musical entertainment for some welcome warmth. CC Bloom kicks off the eve, donning her electric guitar and turning her reverb up to ‘cocoon’ — its smothering tone harmonizes perfectly with her distant and sorrowful vocals. Her short and solemn country-folk set gives the audience enough time to witness the power and promise of her voice, particularly on her final track — a cover of Ring of Fire in the style of Lera Lynn. It is a smoky and sedate rendition which showcases her talents well, but absent is the unique personal spark which elevated Lynn’s version from a sombre cover to a beast of its own.

Glasgow four-piece Snack Villain saunter on stage clad in the comfiest of attires their wardrobes have to offer — channelling the nonchalant, becapped charm of Mac Demarco. Their jizz-jazz-surf-rock administers a sultry dose of sunshine-by-proxy, kindling the desire in the minds of many to escape from the dreary blues of Caledonian winter and snuggle up to the idea of a hammock-centric existence where the only thing worth shifting for is the roll of the waves. In My Room’s gypsy-jangled-guitar takes us on a jovial jaunt from the Parisian banks of Seine to the hot sands of Venice Beach. Its convivial vibe is infectious, cracking smiles on the faces of all those in attendance. The four lads are tight in execution, with a delectably deep bass, solid percussion, husky vocals and pin-point guitar — despite a few slip-ups during solos, but we forgive them, as they are paving the inter-continental highway from Cali to Caley.

Casey Lowry and his accompanying band of merry lads tie off the evening with their bopped-out indie-pop. Despite only a handful of singles to his name at present, the jolly Chesterfield chap has definitely found his sound. In the wake of The 1975’s success there spawned a slew of pale imitations that have since dissipated into the hazy corridors of memory, however, Lowry and company have managed to escape this fate so far due to the frontman’s charming vocals and his band’s leanings toward rock — made explicitly clear with Confused. The peak of the band’s capacity as a unit is not bettered than on this track, the verse is mellow and reflective, but the choruses get progressively heavier. Lowry’s voice is on point, drums roll and punch, guitar wails and bass pumps. To continue on this path of this cut would help them keep their niche carved.

It is a shame for Lowry and co. that the audience is so sparse, as they have little vibe to feed off of, and this leaves the set somewhat devoid of energy. A fact made awkwardly apparent by their misjudged cover Allstar by Smash Mouth, which plays to an unenthusiastic crowd and deflates what atmosphere they had fought to create thus far. This being said, they pull themselves together for the night’s ultimate tune Trampoline, which manages to reignite our fire in time for venturing out into the cold again.

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