Review and Pictures credit: Vikki Luff
It’s a Wednesday night in Glasgow. The streets are filled with a gentle hum of people going about their evening and it’s a pretty tranquil scene. That is, until you hit the Barrowland Ballroom. The atmosphere changes from the moment you step inside, with a good 2000 people eagerly awaiting the appearance of a band who are absolutely sure to put on the show of their lives every time they set foot on stage: Don Broco. Despite being the last stop on their current run of shows in support of their top 5 album, Technology, the Bedford boys took Barrowlands and showed it a thoroughly good time.
Opening the stage for the night were Yonaka. They give off vibes reminiscent of Pvris, with strong female led vocals and a stage presence that says they’re not here to mess around. If it’s a support act’s job to warm up the crowd for the night, Yonaka delivered in spades, with sing along moments that had the whole crowd on their side by the end of the set.
Up next were Tokyo based rap-rockers Man With A Mission, and it was clear to see they already had a decent portion of the crowd in their fan base. Bearing their signature look of wolf headgear, Man With A Mission are certainly an interesting band to see based on aesthetic alone. Luckily for the crowd, they had much more than that on their side. Their fusion of musical styles and catchy vocals proved an instant hit, and their modern take on Smells Like Teen Spirit towards the end of their set quickly won over any non believers.
As Don Broco bounced onto stage with the opening beats of Pretty, Barrowlands absolutely erupted. From the get go, it felt like every voice in the room was belting out the words with enough gusto to match the band’s enthusiasm. Frontman Rob Damiani wasted absolutely no time getting truly involved with the crowd as he dived into the audience in their second song, Everybody, which ended in security having to carry him back to the stage!
Don Broco continued their set by reeling off a popular selection of hits from their second album, Automatic, before treating the audience to some brand new tracks. The dedication of their fans is truly apparent in the number of people who already knew every word to these unreleased songs. Any potential doubters of the new material had their faces truly melted by the sheer aggression of tunes like Porkies, just about having time to compose themselves in time for the old favourite of Thug Workout. Amidst chants of “here we, here we, here we f***ing go” (which I’m assured is a true Scottish tradition), the boys pause mid song to bring out a badminton net, a couple of racquets and some shuttlecocks into the middle of the pit. I was just as confused seeing it happen as you may well be reading this, but a good couple of minutes passed as the support bands attempted a rally between each other. As this happened, Rob explained the origins of the Bad Boys Badminton Club from a previous Glasgow show, culminating in a huge cheer as the “game” finished and the pit dissolved into a sea of jumping bodies.
After leaving the stage to raucous applause, drummer Matt Donnelly returned to begin the relaxed vocals to their latest single, Come Out To L.A., before being joined by the rest of the band for the encore. The set finished with arguably the most popular track Don Broco have released in recent years, T-Shirt Song. Within seconds, the crowd was barely visible beneath the mass of clothing being waved in the air, with everyone happily joining in with the demands of the lyrics.
As with every show I have seen Don Broco play, they truly gave it their all with an unparalleled energy and an evident love for what they do. Even if you have never listened to their music (and more fool you for that), I strongly urge everyone to see them live if given the chance. The band return to the UK in April after a run of shows in the US.
3. What You Do To Me
5. Stay Ignorant
6. You Wanna Know
14. Thug Workout
16. Money Power Fame
17. Come Out To L.A.
18. T-Shirt Song