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Friday, 26 October 2018

A(nother) View From The Back Of The Room: Evil Scarecrow (Comparative Live Review By Paul)

Special Brucey Bonus Review

Evil Scarecrow – The Garage, Glasgow

You may have read Neil’s recent glowing review of Nottingham parody metal outfit Evil Scarecrow from their recent gig at the Motion in Bristol as part of their Antartartica UK tour. The band have steadily built a reputation for their live shows and I admit with no shame that I was scuttling across the main arena at Bloodstock in 2014 when the band drew a huge number to watch their early morning set. However, since then the band has failed to interest me in the same manner and whilst I don’t deny that they are adored by many who would argue that they are fun and a good time, I for one find their set now a little dated.

Ten Foot Wizard (8) have been around since 2009 and despite only catching their final four tracks, I liked what I heard and saw. Heavy stoner riffs and energy a plenty from front man Gary, the band careered through their set with real drive and determination. The Mancunians warm fuzzy tones pleasing and closing track Covered In Tits complete with microphone taped to heron and loud speaker was just ridiculous.

With the tarps pulled away the stage set revealed a giant igloo amongst many other props and as the band hit the stage the place went nuts. Quickly retreating to a safe distance, I watched from further back as Evil Scarecrow (6) got stuck into their set with a couple of new tracks from the weak Antartartica album. The sound was abysmal, with the vocals buried in the mix and the guitars non-existent. Whilst this didn’t appear to impact on the rest of the crowd, it accentuated my reservations about the band. Props were everywhere, partly to disguise the fact that musically, this band isn’t that good (something they openly acknowledge). An early place in the setlist for Robototron did raise a smile from me as the band attempted to get a ‘square pit’ going only for the crowd to get it hopelessly wrong.

As the 90 minute set developed, it was clear to me that the new material isn’t up to much, with the Ballad of Brother Pain particularly awful. Flying saucers, robots and spacemen are all well and good but it would be much more enjoyable if the band had more songs to match the onstage antics. I found myself looking at my watch and checking my phone several times as the set continued, not a good combination. Red Riding Hood saw a ridiculous dance off competition whilst the bloated title track from Antartartica saw many lose attention. As it was, the expected antics of Crabulon, Space Dementia and closing encore Hurricanado ensured that the vast majority of the crowd lapped it up and went home happy. We had a lengthy debate about the band afterwards, with the conclusion being that I just don’t find Evil Scarecrow as funny and enjoyable as I did a few years ago. Maybe I’ve want more from my music than inflatable crabs and robots. Maybe the sound marred it. Maybe  I’m just a miserable bastard. Whatever the case, if you like Evil Scarecrow, then good for you. Enjoy and have fun. I’ll just pass next time they come round.

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