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Lawson, O2 ABC, Glasgow

Lawson protest too much.

The foursome have voiced their frustration in a variety of interviews regarding not being taken seriously as a proper band, but while they may play their own instruments this gig ticked off plenty of pure pop clichés. That's not always a bad thing, but here it was presented in an ordinary, unremarkable manner.

Essentially, Lawson try to straddle two different styles, presenting the no-frills stage set-up of your average indie band with plenty of cheesy banter, arms-in-the-air encouragement and, on Die For You, a big, lighters/phones-aloft ballad. This meant that the young crowd screamed equal appreciation for Joel Peat's guitar solos as they did for the suggestion drummer Adam Pitts might remove his shirt.

If the fact that Lawson are a pop act playing instruments is worthy of praise, it also provides disappointment, for the tunes themselves were rather monotonous, if straightforward, cheerful pop. Most pop gigs can fall back on various gimmicks, but Lawson's adherence to an onstage indie band dynamic meant there was nothing flashy on offer to divert attention. Instead, there were only the unremarkable likes of Gone and Stolen, songs which hinted at the likes of Coldplay but without as deft a grasp of melody.

There was more variety late on, with a cover of Swedish House Mafia's Don't You Worry Child injecting energy, and The Girl I Knew only featuring singer Andy Brown. The rapt attention this acoustic track generated from an otherwise bubbly audience indicated Lawson are doing something right, and the concert surely provided a safe introduction to gig-going for many. In terms of pop excitement though, it was all too subdued.

HH

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