Husky Rescue - The Classic Grand, Glasgow
I was more than a little excited when I discovered Finland’s Husky Rescue would be adding a Glasgow date to their October UK mini tour. Regular CD Times readers will know debut album, Country Falls, made a big impression on me back in 2004. Originally conceived as a studio project by leader, Marko Nyberg, on record they might best be described as a country-influenced Air, but with extra vocals.
The band, along with Slow Club and Tiny Dancers, were playing as part of 'Porno', a new - and, given the reels of titties projected on to the stage behind the screen, aptly named - club night at new Glasgow music venue, The Classic Grand. (In the long wait between acts, punters danced to an eclectic mix of funky tunes. It looks like future 'Porno' nights will genre-hop all over the place, taking in bands, DJs, indie, dance and beyond.)
Husky Rescue didn’t hit the stage until at least 23:30 (I think!), following Slow Club (Sheffield’s answer to The White Stripes?). The venue was reasonably quiet. One man's loss being another's gain, we left the table where we'd been drinking and moved to the front with ease.
Kicking off the set with Sweet Little Kitten, it was immediately apparent that none of the loveliness the band possess on record would be lost in translation, while also avoiding the trap of sounding too delicate and perhaps being lost on a late Saturday night crowd. What really hits you with the Husky Rescue live experience is those warm waves of lap steel guitar. Oh, and Reeta-Leena Korhola on vocal duties (shared amongst a number of singers on the album). It‘s not just her voice that is stunning. The rest of the band aren’t exactly animated (what do you expect with this sort of material?), so she makes a very welcome focus, at least from the point of view of a red-blooded male. If only I could have clicked my fingers and had CD Times photographer, Lorne Thomson, appear at my side! (Instead, make do with some pictures taken with my mobile phone.)
City Lights, possibly their best known song, was second and - to borrow a porno term - I feared they may have shot their load too soon. However, nothing in this short set was less than spellbinding, even forthcoming single Diamonds in the Sky, which I’ve expressed reservations about. A couple of new tracks, one of them more upbeat à la Summertime Cowboy, worked very well. It almost didn’t matter that no room was made for New Light of Tomorrow or Rainbow Flows. The set ended with Sunset Drive - and immediately I missed that beautiful cocoon I had been wrapped in for the past half hour.
During the performance, couples had drawn together. Husky Rescue make music to fall in love to. Music to fall in love with. And if you don’t fall in love with the music, you’ll probably fall in love with Reeta-Leena anyway. No track finished without huge applause and there was definitely the sense that this band - currently a well kept secret - will eventually catch on to a wider audience and have the success they deserve. (A member of the security staff informed me that a number of people had asked if any CDs were on sale at the venue.)
Before headliners, Tiny Dancers, came on stage, the evening’s alcohol intake caught up with your reviewer and at least one gig companion. Subsequent events are somewhat hazy. Still, it was Husky Rescue we had come to see and they put on a brief yet utterly captivating show.
Husky Rescue MySpace
The Classic Grand MySpace
Tiny Dancers MySpace
Slow Club MySpace