Swaggering onstage armed with two Buckfasts each, The Snuts salute the impatiently expectant crowd and prepare to pound out their explosive style of rock, which is now coming to be as popular in Scotland as the band’s alcohol choice.
The room is electric, a football stadium of fans waiting for the first chord to hit. An eruption of heavy guitars and raw vocals follows, with half empty cups tossed into the air bringing heavy beer showers.
Coming to the end of their debut UK headline tour, and with three sold-out shows to their name, The Snuts strum an impulsive but tight sound, which demonstrates their experience. Proudly owning up to the 40 shows now behind them, the band exudes confidence and a daring attitude. Their self-belief is possibly aided tonight by playing to a home crowd (the band’s roots lie in West Lothian) and the anthem of ‘Glasgow’ with its proclamation “I’ll always love the way that you say Glasgow” igniting a frenzy. No more “playing down South to grannies” as lead singer Jack Cochrane declares mid-set.
Part early Arctic Monkeys, part The Amazons but equally reminiscent of neither, The Snuts bring an original approach to the tradition of northern industrial rock.
Avoiding the trap of being all noise and no substance, their songs strongly reflect the personal struggles and insecurities that plague us all. ‘What’s going on?’ radiates self-disappointment and angst-ridden confusion both lyrically and melodically, with throaty vocals melting into an excited guitar riff. It encapsulates the way in which we can all too often feel out of sync and off balance in life “in your head, thought you were flying but you’re falling instead”.
Latest release ‘Manhattan Project’ takes a different direction, seeking to blitz the audience with frantic drums and lyrics full of fighter-bombers and atomic radiation. And tonight the crowd explodes; the force of the room as charged as the song’s content. The band’s greatest hit (judging by the volatility of the mosh pit) remains ‘Seasons’. An iconic song for the band and their catapult into the music scene, the single is a call to pulling through the mess, rut and realities of life, capturing the fight for “nothing but a wholesome soul survival”. Permeating both is a constant drive forward, a drive to being better and the drive to search for a dream.
Finishing far too early for the crowd’s appetite, the band jokingly curses Edinburgh council’s noise policy and is sent off stage with fervent applause. Rousing, unfiltered and bold, The Snuts deliver a show that burns in its intensity
Image: Bethany Davison