Gig Review: Magnum / THEIA – The Garage, Glasgow (12th September 2022)

Here we are at Glasgow’s Garage to catch Magnum touring on the back of their latest album The Monster Roars. First up we have THEIA, also promoting new material with their The Day EP. The drums open up as they set us on “Fire” with Ash pounding away as the guitar kicks this big sounding pounder of a song into gear, whilst Kyle’s rich voice takes us cruising along; a great start to the set. Another bouncer of a track in “Blue Heart” with its almost bass-like guitar-driven vibe. The duo have a huge sound for a two piece band and are clearly enjoying themselves in front of a packed Garage.

THEIA (c) Gary Cooper

The title track of the new EP now with “The Day”, a smoother ballad-like opening to this one before the drums kick in as Kyle’s guitar joins. Kyle has a fantastic voice that totally carries this classic rock song along. THEIA have an amazing strong full sound on the new EP which reminds me a bit of the White Stripes meets Lenny Kravitz. They have that pounding vibe but with a full rich vocal sound as well. The harder-edged rocker “No Crisis” from The Ghost Light is up next and you can hear how much the sound has grown on the new material as we go back to the new EP. The almost ethereal “There’s A Boy” carries you hauntingly along, Kyle’s voice floating on the back of the music.

We catch sight of the “Electric Witness” from the Take The Pill album, another classic slice of pounding, crunching rock. They invite the crowd to sing along with the the last track on the new EP “Hoo Woo”. This is a bouncing, fun-packed rocker of a song with some killer guitar riffs. The set comes to a close with the title track from Back in Line, a nicely paced classic rock track. Kyle has one of the richest, fullest-sounding voices I’ve heard in a long while, and Ash grins away at the rear keeping him on a nice even keel.

I thoroughly enjoyed THEIA’s set tonight as did the crowd and the new The Day EP is just superb. Catch THEIA live if you can for a fun-packed, rocking evening!

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The main event now with Magnum, a band that has never disappointed from the first time I saw them in 1982 with Krokus up to present day with the incredible new album The Monster Roars. The keyboards start with Rick playing those familiar tones which herald “Days of No Trust”. The crowd is bouncing, smiling and singing along as Bob’s golden vocals fill the room with Tony on guitar ably backed up with Dennis on bass and Lee pounding away up the rear; a fantastic start to the night. The band get “Lost on the Road to Eternity” with its soulful keys opening along with the crescendo of drums before the vocals kick in. This is a pounding killer of a track. Next up we hear “The Monster Roars”,  its slower paced vocals intertwined with powerful uplifting soaring vocal sections along with some fabulous guitar work from Tony.

Magnum (c) Gary Cooper

We head through “The Archway of Tears” as the keyboards take us gently along and the guitar feeds in before Bob’s vocals join. The pounding drums lift the pace as the whole band digs in, the crowd bouncing and singing along is a joy to watch and listen to. The guitar and keyboards herald the “Dance of the Black Tattoo” from one of my favourite albums, On The 13th Day. The heavy riffing of the guitar as the vocals come in slowly before the huge sound of this song carries us along. Simply a fantastic live track bolstered by the band and Bob’s glorious vocals. They ask “Where Are You Eden?” before we get caught in “The Flood” from the Sleepwalking album. Then we catch up with “The Day After the Night Before”, possibly my favourite from the new album due to its bounce-along chorus.

Guitars introduce “Wild Swan” as it takes flight before we meet the dancing dead in “Les Morts Dansant” featuring its unmistakable keyboard opening. Bob’s voice takes us back on a sad journey to WWI, before we take a seat in the “Rockin’ Chair” and await its singalong chorus. “All England’s Eyes” is always a great crowd favourite, and the main set ends as we go back to 1986 for the always popular “Vigilante”. The audience visibly enjoy this all time classic which always goes down well, with them singing the chorus back to the band. The crunching guitar launches the encore as we head back further into the “Kingdom of Madness” and the crowd continue singing back every word to Bob and the band.

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We listen in “On a Storyteller’s Night”. Bob’s vocals still gives me goosebumps and the band explodes in full force along with the rampant singalong crowd. It’s one of those songs that everyone should hear live in the middle of a sweaty audience. Magnum end a fabulous evening with spectacular keyboards as always from Rick, as we enter the “Sacred Hour” from Chase the Dragon. As the lyrics say, “Hear the people [of Glasgow] applauding”… and they have been all evening for this has been a truly fantastic night of music.

Photos by Gary Cooper

Setlist:

  • Days of No Trust
  • Lost on the Road to Eternity
  • The Monster Roars
  • The Archway of Tears
  • Dance of the Black Tattoo
  • Where Are You Eden?
  • The Flood (Red Cloud’s War)
  • The Day After the Night Before
  • Wild Swan
  • Les morts dansant
  • Rockin’ Chair
  • All England’s Eyes
  • Vigilante

Encore:

  • Kingdom of Madness
  • On a Storyteller’s Night
  • Sacred Hour
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