Event: Dan Stuart, Americana, The Glad Cafe, Glasgow
Review by Mike Ritchie, Glasgow: five stars.
He rouses himself but rarely from his base down Mexico way but when the inimitable Dan Stuart ventures forth we all rejoice as we did big-style in this brilliant and absorbing performance on his much anticipated return to Scotland.
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With flawless guitarist, Antonio Gramentieri at his side adding a lucid steely bite or gentle strokes this two-hour master class racked up the magic, song after song. The 80-strong crowd reveled in a set that was deliciously jammed with classic tracks from his seminal, much-missed band, Green On Red and equally striking songs from his first album of this century, "The Deliverance of Marlowe Billings."
These joint spirits oozed verve and swagger, and punk sharpness - even without an outing for "Zombie For Love" - plus heartfelt emotions in what Dan called "the mid tempo sludge" tracks. Dan Stuart is laconic, edgy and fun with a priceless catalogue of songs. Few songwriters could ever hope to outshine him.
"What Dreams Are Made For" was, as always, effortlessly compelling and no-one had to be asked twice to gleefully sing and clap-along to "Time Ain't Nothing" at the close.
"Time ain't nothing/ When you're young at heart/ And your soul still burns": the words filled the room. It was a wonderful finale.
Thankfully, Dan's soul clearly burns bright - but the month of May is set to be a whole lot duller now that he's gone.