By Danny Munro (he/him)
Three years on from her Glasgow debut at the 300-capacity King Tut’s, it’s fair to say a lot has changed for Beatrice Laus or, as the world knows her, Beabadoobee.
Having been propelled into the mainstream thanks to that song on TikTok, Beabadoobee has had to quickly adjust to playing bigger rooms for an enthusiastic young fanbase. But as the 22-year-old took to the stage at the Barras on Saturday night, it was immediately clear that she took the pressure in her stride.
Right from the off, Beabadoobee and her band made it pretty clear that they had not come to Glasgow to mess about. Having been sufficiently warmed up by the formidable Pretty Sick, the set was kickstarted with ‘10:36’, a track from the recently released Beatopia, played in a noticeably rockier, more aggressive manner than the pre-recorded version.
Beabadoobee and her band – consisting of Jacob Bugden (guitar), Eliana Sewell (bass) and Luca Caurso (drums), proceeded to rattle through the likes of ‘Care’, ‘Fairy Song’ and ‘Together’ at a voracious pace, only pausing for breath after an impressive seven songs back-to-back.
Capping off the ferocious seven-song intro was ‘Charlie Brown’, a track that allowed Beabadoobe to show off her vocal range, her striking screams reflecting a track that contains much darker themes than its title suggests.
Having stopped to say hello to her adoring audience, Beabadoobee and the band got right back into the thick of it, offering up fan-favourite ‘the perfect pair’ and, by the time we reached the half-hour mark, the band had already thrashed out an impressive nine tracks.
Arguably the catchiest song of the evening, ‘He Gets Me So High’ followed, its chorus nesting firmly in my head for the following 24 hours. Shortly after, we were treated to Beabadoobee’s personal favourite, ‘See you Soon’, a mellow, vulnerable offering that aims to recreate the feeling of psychedelics, as per Beaba’ herself.
The Glasgow regiment of Beabadoobee’s army was then gifted a reward for their support in the form of a live debut. Though prefaced by a warning of the fact that she was “awfully nervous”, Beabadoobee proceeded to reel off an impressive first performance of the Beatopia single ‘Don’t get the deal,’ which will now serve as bragging rights for any hardcore fans who were in the Barrowlands crowd that October evening when the song inevitably goes viral, like so much of Beabadoobe’s output already has.
What followed was a flurry of more melodic tunes, some of which failed to leave a strong mark, though the set ended on a high with ‘Talk’, a real singalong moment that united the crowd and felt, to me, like the highlight of the evening.
It was obvious as the band strolled off the stage that things weren’t quite done yet, and usurpingly Beabadoobee returned almost instantly, armed only with an acoustic guitar – ready to play the one that everybody was waiting for – ‘Coffee’.
I don’t know if it’s because it transports me straight back to the first lockdown or simply because it sounds so different to Beabadoobe’s recent discography, but I just can’t get on board with the ‘Coffee’ hype train. Thankfully though, I was very much in the minority on Saturday – as voices from the barrier to the back of the room came together to echo every word of the track that will likely follow Beabadoobee for the rest of her career.
The fun didn’t stop there, as ‘Coffee’ was followed by ‘Ripples’ – a delicate track about the struggles of life on tour, and ‘Cologne’ was the chosen closing number, sending the crowd home on a more upbeat note after a second half containing some heavy-hitters.
Though she got big on TikTok, Saturday night proved that she can do it in real life too – and that Beadbadoobee is very much here to stay.
Beabadoobe played the Barras, Glasgow, on October 15 2022.
Music Editor 2022-23