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Review: Del Amitri, SSE Hydro, Glasgow

Stuart Morrison's verdict: five stars

With comeback gigs and anniversary tours the thing to do at the moment, it was particularly pleasing to hear that one of Scotland's finest had decided to get in on the act.

The great danger with these things is, of course, that the present reality doesn't quite match up to the pleasant memory. Happily for Del Amitri, there were no worries on that score.

After an excellent opening slot from Dallas duo, The Os, The Big Dish, a band who themselves only reconvened at last year's Celtic Connections Festival after umpteen years apart, took to the stage.

In Steven Lindsay they have one of the great Scottish pop voices and with Jim McDermott now supplying a solid percussive base, Brian McFee's guitar snarled and purred in equal measure. Swimmer, which finished their set, was quite stunning.

And talking of great Scottish voices, Justin Currie said recently that he didn't like playing arenas. Well, perched 150ft up and half a mile from the stage as I was, it didn't appear that the front man was struggling to cope with the setting.

Selecting songs from across their extensive back catalogue they strode through this first gig in decades with the confidence of a band who gave every impression of never having been away.

Always the Last to Know, Kiss This Thing Goodbye and the achingly beautiful, Driving with the Brakes On were quite excellent.

An acoustic segment in the middle culminated in Nothing Ever Happens, which sparked an 8000-voice sing along. Currie claimed to have made 'a couple of mistakes', but the entire set was beautifully judged.

All in all, a bit of a triumph.

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