By Leah Buist (she/her)
The Amazons paid a visit to SWG3 Galvanisers last weekend as their tour reached its northern peak for a one-night-only, showstopping performance in Glasgow.
The British rock band set off on their autumn tour earlier this month in promotion of their third studio album How Will I Know If Heaven Will Find Me? following its September release.
I had the honour of sitting down backstage with frontman Matthew, and lead guitarist Chris, before the start of their show on Sunday 16 October.
“There’s a bunch of different colours, and much more dynamic in this record”, explained Chris. “It’s our favourite for the reasons of it being our best. We feel the most creatively fulfilled”, added lead singer Matt.
How Will I know If Heaven Will Find Me? features a new sound for the Amazons, known previously for their riff-heavy rock songs like ‘Doubt it’ and ‘In My Mind’.
Yet despite the band perhaps venturing into new territory with their music, Chris and Matt note that the love and reception to their new album from fans has been “unbelievable”.
“Northern Star is one of the best songs on the record. We feel incredibly vindicated to the reaction to that song live. It’s been a moment every single night”.
‘Northern Star’ represents this new softer side to the Amazons as a really stripped-back and emotional addition to the album.
“People are really taking the song into their hearts and embracing it”, says Matt. “I’ve never experienced a song being out for a month with no promotion and the crowd in unison singing it back to you”.
I was lucky enough to stay behind for the show and witness the magic that is ‘Northern Star’ live. I wasn’t overly familiar with the new song before I went, but as the performance went on, I found myself connecting to it as if I’d known it forever.
There is something really magic and captivating about the way The Amazons can hold a crowd during their live shows. Frontman Matt discussed this magic with me: “When you’re on the stage you just feel really present and alive. You reconnect with the best part of it all”
Performing live “feels like skydiving for the first time” shared Chris.
Of course, I couldn’t have a sit-down chat with the Amazons and not ask them about what it’s like performing in Scotland.
“I’ll tell you what I think about performing in fucking Scotland,” Matt responded, “I mean the Glaswegians are crazy!”.
“It’s almost guaranteed that you can have a fun one, and we can kind of almost relax,” he explains, “sometimes as a frontman I’m looking at gigs on the tour and think, what show am I going to be working the hardest? I feel like people in Glasgow look at live shows less like ‘we’re gonna go and you have to fucking entertain me’. It’s more like ‘we’re gonna go and see this band and have a fucking great time’”.
The Amazons’ performance at SWG3 was nothing short of phenomenal. They had the audience in the palm of their hands throughout the entire setlist and engaged with the crowd more than I’ve ever seen any band do before.
Matt explained to me: “I think paying £20 for a gig ticket is kind of a lot at the moment with the cost of living, we wanna give people value for money and more importantly we don’t want to leave the stage once we’re on it”.
Well, he certainly stuck to his word. The Amazons interrupted their set list a few times to play iconic Scottish riffs such as ‘Back in Black’ by ACDC and ‘Take me Out’ by Franz Ferdinand. When they reached the end of their scheduled performance, the band stayed on stage for another fifteen minutes just jamming together and giving the crowd an extra taste of what The Amazons are all about.
Their gig was the best fun I’ve had in a long-time, having attended some underwhelming live performances recently. The Amazons reminded me why live music is one of life’s top-tier experiences and I can’t wait to see them again.
The Amazons played SWG3 on Sunday 16 October 2022.