Tuesday, 21 February 2017

Julian Cope

19th February 2017

Glasgow Oran Mor

One of the downsides of becoming an old person is that gigs now generally go on way past my bedtime.  So I felt it was really wonderfully considerate of Julian Cope to put on a matinee performance at Oran Mor this afternoon, once the evening show sold-out.  

I think the wag who called out “Greedy Bastard” during one of JC's lengthy humorous monologues was just joking.

Julian promised us a toned-down performance appropriate for the time of day on a Sunday afternoon: “World Share Your Lunch” was promised.  But in reality I think the only casualty from his regular set was his delightful ditty Cunts Can Fuck Off.  Perhaps performing this one in a former church, whilst it was still light outside represented a step too far.

Much of the set I think was the same as I has seen a couple of years ago, although I would suggest Julian made more use of various pedals to flesh out his sound, this afternoon.  Although this aspect could just have been a consequence of my failing memory.  

One definite change was the introduction into proceedings of a battered old string synthesizer – picked up on Hungarian eBay, we learned – which he used to beef up The Great Dominions.  

He didn’t actually play the thing, just “taped down" a few keys to set up a hypnotic drone over which he crashed his way through a pleasingly heavy-metal tinged rendition of the Wilder tune.  I could imagine some folks may have found listening to this a touch challenging, but for me it was one of show’s high points.

Another being his encore: Greatness and Perfection - a flop single from his debut solo album World Shut Your Mouth.

Julian Cope setlist

Autogeddon Blues
Double Vegetation
They Were On Hard Drugs
Fear Loves This Place
The Culture Bunker
Liver as Big as Hartlepool
As The Beer Flows Over Me
The Great Dominions
Paranormal in the West Country
Cromwell in Ireland
Soul Desert

Greatness and Perfection

Julian Cope - Glasgow 2017.

Julian's big, sparkly orange one.

Taping down the keys.

Julian Cope - Glasgow 2017.

The support act was a chap by the name of Tom Hickox.  Remembering the scary-looking creature who had supported Julian last time out, I did wonder what sort of off-kilter weirdness we were all going to be exposed to this time around.  

But onto the stage ambled an amiable looking young man in a light brown three piece suit sporting a beige coloured tie, who looked a cross between the late Andrew Gold (circa 1977) and some slightly disheveled Scandinavian folk-singer.  

But when he sang I was immediately put in mind of Scott Walker’s deep rich baritone, and I could tell immediately why Julian had invited him along.  His sparse compositions (accompanied by himself on keyboards and Richard Hawley’s guitarist Shez Sheridan on guitar) were a delight – particularly the opening brace.

That’s the worst of going to so many gigs: you come away with more and more homework to do.

Tom Hickox - Glasgow 2017

Tom Hickox setlist

Out of the War Zone
The Pretty Pride of Russia
The Plough
The Lisbon Maru
Monsters From The Deep
White Roses Red
Let Me Be Your Lover



  1. Hi there!
    I'm a massive Cope fan but I live in Portugal so I don't often got to see him live (just once in fact, back in 2006) as I would like to. Nice photos and nice text. I'm curious: who was "the scary-looking creature who had supported Julian last time out"? Thanks in advance.

  2. Hi Carlos. Black Sheep Sound System was that man: http://therockandrollknife.blogspot.co.uk/2015/05/julian-cope.html