A piece of life advice for anyone and everyone: should the chance arise, go and see The Struts. It’s rare to say – and most of the time I wouldn’t give a band the satisfaction of saying so – but after The Struts’ performance at Dingwalls, it’s definitely deserved.
From the offset (or even before the band begin, as they announced their arrival with lyrics from ‘Roll Up’) there’s an almost circus-y feel to the set. It’s dramatic, mystical and truly amazing; sort of bizarre sense of delusion and uncertainty. But there’s something more to The Struts. Costume changes and glam-rock performance aside, frontman Luke Spiller truly connects with the crowds, seemingly eyeing up well-known faces and building up a good rapport from the start. Though it’s clear we’re not going to get away with keeping quiet for the show (Spiller reminding everyone to join in at every given opportunity), it’s also clear it’s going to be a hell of a lot of fun.
The set flies past in true glam-rock fashion – four costume changes, a lot of sing-a-longs and a hell of a lot of glitter – all the while the band striking the perfect balance of performance and musicality. While Spiller may have a knack for wowing the crowd with his eccentricity, he’s also got an incredible talent, and a voice that stands out even through The Struts’ madness.
That’s not to diminish the value of the performance however. Between extravagant dancing, asking the crowd to ‘kiss this’ while wiggling his bum and calling at the ‘posh lazy fuckers’ to join in, Spiller highlights the importance of bands, and in turn their audiences, having fun. Unfortunately, a point to true – with many bands focusing more on their image than enjoying themselves – The Struts certainly do the job of going against the grain.
I’ll admit that before I entered Dingwalls I was far from familiar with The Struts’ tunes, and while they proved that you certainly don’t need to know the words to enjoy yourself, something leaves you with a burning desire to know them. Though it’s been a while since The Struts graced the UK with their presence, hopefully it won’t be too long before I see them again (this time with the lyrics to ‘Where Did She Go’ firmly in my head).