In the intimate upstairs room of London’s Old Blue Last tonight, a roaring guitar kicks off Catholic Action’s UK tour. Hot off the Glaswegian streets, the four-piece bring their rocky guitar pop to life with serious attitude and self-confidence. ‘Breakfast’ is as punchy as ever, the anthemic refrain of ‘L.U.V’ (“Why am I still going? I don’t know”) hits home even harder live, and the band don’t put a foot wrong.
The on-stage charisma of frontman Chris McCrory is undeniable, and with guitarist Andrew Macpherson, who without a microphone yells the odd lyric at the room – their effortlessness and powerful bass lines giving them the air of a band three times their experience, pacing through their catchy tracks with unrelenting energy.
Moments of calm created by slow and heartfelt lyrics are smashed apart five minutes later by the raucous instrumental climax of ‘Rita Ora’, loud enough to wake the entire city from its autumnal slumber. Chris leads with a too-cool-to-care attitude that’s shared by the rest of the band, joking with the crowd from behind his enviable glam-rock locks “This is a slow song, so like, if you could all shut up” and they make a memorable exit. Dropping their instruments in a rockstar-esque strop they file out one by one, ‘The Wash’ hangs in the dingy air and oh yes, Catholic Action are only getting started.
Photos: Jonathan Dadds
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