If any music was made to soundtrack a dark and menacing Hallowe’en night, it’s Sons And Daughters‘ lusty indie pop. Added to this the band have dressed up for the occasion, sauntering onto a dimly lit, cobweb strewn Rough Trade East stage resplendent in frighteningly fabulous fancy dress as a dapper skeleton complete with braces and pork pie hat, two bloody demonic brides and a quiffed gunshot victim in tight black jeans and leather.
Their performance certainly makes for a visual treat, fake blood splashes and caked on make-up cutting a striking image against the stark white walls of the venue, but it’s nothing compared to the magnificent sounds which start emanating from the stage as the Glasgow foursome tear into a set comprising of songs taken mainly from forthcoming third album This Gift.
The new material is far poppier than any of Sons And Daughters’ previous works – Rebel With A Ghost boasting an insanely catchy refrain and Chains a beautifully soaring chorus – and there are also nods to Motown with The Nest and Darling both combining the band’s trademark scratchy unsettling riffs with a driving danceable beat. This can possibly be attributed to the influence of producer Bernard Butler pushing for experimentation with a different direction, but fans will be pleased to hear that the songs haven’t lost any of the bluesy ferocity and demonic bite that make Sons And Daughters so special.
After wonderfully frenzied renditions of old favourites Dance Me In and Johnny Cash, which sees the quartet seamlessly segue into I Wanna Be Your Dog by The Stooges and back into their own track again, attacking their instruments while singer Adele Bethel creepily stalks the stage, the end comes with stirring album closer Goodbye Service.
This Gift is the sound of Sons And Daughters taking a stab at mainstream success while staying true to their striking ethos and individuality, and on the strength of thrilling performances such as this it won’t be long until they make it.