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LIVE REVIEW: Don Broco, Barrowlands Ballroom, Glasgow, 23/08/2023

Photo Credit: Calum McMillan

Don Broco are greeted like homecoming heroes tonight by the Barrowlands audience. Not without good reason, it’s hard to deny how infectious the band’s good-natured enthusiasm for playing live is.

Difficult to stand with their arms crossed when everyone on stage is throwing themselves about with the kind carefree energy most people reserve for their dancing in the shower. Which everyone probably needs after the making the most of venue’s sprung dance floor, jumping and dancing for the band’s entire set. Except during a quick break for badminton, but more on that later. 

Gumshield and Manchester Super Reds No. 1 Fan are big statements of intent, the band bursting with as much energy as the bouncy riffs and repetitive, shout along refrains of both those tunes. Slowing things down just a touch with the more open dynamics of Come Out To La is a canny choice, showcasing the band aren’t a one trick pony. Later on in the set the Deftones-esque One True Prince and soulful Nerve repeats similar tricks, swapping the intensity for the anthemic.

That’s all well and good, but realistically, energy is Don Broco’s USP. Their bizarre blend of nu-metal, funk, contemporary pop and…more or less anything they feel like at any given moment makes them a pretty unique proposition in the landscape of UK alternative music. There’s no one else delivering both breakdowns and pals on holiday vibes quite like they do and as a result, there’s more than one occasion where the audience almost drowns out the band tonight.

The “woo-hoo-ho”s of Action are belted out with pure joy by the crowd, as are the various “yeah yeah yeah”s of Superlove , a rare treat from underappreciated second record Automaticbut nothing brings out quite the cheers as the return of the Bad Boys Badminton Club. A simple concept, a badminton net is extended into the pit and the crowd try and keep a rally going. Last time around in Glasgow the tally was six. This time, a colossal ten. Or maybe more, it’s hard to tell over the deafening volume of the crowd before vocalist Rob Damiani declares it “the best night of all time” for such a result.

To be honest, with performances like this, it’s hard to imagine a Don Broco show not being one of the best nights of all time for anyone. A band truly on top form.


Written By: Calum McMillan