The Drums @ The Art School, Glasgow, 5 Oct

You can feel the love emanating from The Art School tonight as The Drums' frontman works the stage in a glitter-adorned get up

Live Review by Claire Francis | 12 Oct 2017

The Drums now have undergone several incarnations since their 2010 debut album – with the most recent exit of longstanding band member Jacob Graham, Jonny Pierce is now propping up the band as a solo act (albeit with a touring band in tow). Where other groups might have elected to call it a day, Pierce hit back with Abysmal Thoughts, a record he described as being infused with "new energy and new life".

Abysmal Thoughts may be an album of introspection, but it still retains The Drums' upbeat pop inclinations and knack for a catchy hook. There's no doubt Pierce has always been the heart and soul of The Drums, and tonight's sold-out show reflects Pierce's longstanding popularity as a queer indie icon. There's no crisis of confidence here – our frontman is in his element, working the stage in a glitter-adorned get-up and plenty of his signature loose-limbed dance moves.

Predictably, Let's Go Surfing is the nostalgic high-point, along with The Smiths-indebted Money from 2011's Portamento. But Pierce also works his new material into the set with style – more than a pop concert, this is an act in two parts. Pierce retreats from the stage early, only to appear dressed in a boiler suit, delivering a candid, heartfelt (if slightly drawn-out) monologue on the recent crises affecting him professionally and personally, before launching back into the rest of the set. You can feel the love emanating from the bouncy Art School crowd; despite the set-backs, The Drums still hold a fond place in fans' hearts.