How many long years had it been since Doves last played Scotland? It’d been 9 since they last played Glasgow. So much has changed since then but the band’s ability to rouse a crowd and casually mine emotion from every neuk of their songs has not diminished in the slightest.
Man of Moon were the perfect choice of opening act for the evening. They battered through their road honed set; ‘Sign’ and ‘I Run’ were highlights, while ‘Ride The Waves’, from their 2019 Chemicals EP was as menacing as I’ve heard it. They suffered a little from the usual keep the support band volume low scenario, but they gradually built up the intensity, and managed to build a solid connection with the gradually filling crowd. They’re a band probably best heard in compact and dingy basements but their sound is at the same time expansive and focused enough to work on the big stages – they’ve had plenty of practice recently, supporting Django Django on their 2018 european tour.
As for Doves, they start with a floaty run through of Lost Souls’ instrumental opener ‘Firesuite’, giving the crowd a chance to gather their attention before kicking it into gear with a sharp rendition of ‘Snowden’. Eleven more songs pass in an instant and Jimi Goodwin urges the crowd to be present in the moment ‘Look around you, it’s all happening’. Before you know it they’re onto their encore, ending with crowd pleasers ‘The Cedar Room’ and ‘There Goes the Fear’; the latter beginning with an emotional crowd led singalong. There were no new tracks, and there was no hint that there might be anything new in the works. Fingers crossed that this comeback tour renews their collective creative interest and opens the gates to new music from them soon.