The Turning with support from Quentin Wylie & Fabric
Sunday 24th August 2014 – Sandino’s, Londonderry
The backroom of Derry’s famous Sandino’s Cafe Bar is an intimate venue, casually elegant, with velvet chairs and bar stools. The walls are decorated with memorabilia of the Cuban revolution and Spanish film posters and the ceiling is lit by neon stars which glow and twinkle above the bar. This evening hosting local boy Luke McLaughlin’s homecoming with his London band The Turning, a night of high talent and high contrast was promised.
Local singer/songwriter Quentin Wylie opened the night’s entertainment, dropping the first three chords of ‘An Imaginative Woman’ to a crowd reserved in size but hushed in attention.
‘Songwriters are supposed to be good at telling stories, but I can’t talk for shit…’
Quentin has a quiet charisma that comes across in the few words he speaks, and in the honesty of his lyrics. Amidst a mainly original set of bouncy folk tunes with electrified harmonica and soulful finger picking, a lively cover of Tom Petty’s ‘Last Dance with Mary Jane’ really stood out. The song, he commented won him Derry’s coveted Roaring Meg Busking Competition.
Then, out of nowhere, Fabric emerge from a mass cymbal crashes and distorted bass guitar. The crowd and the adrenaline start to spill in, drawn to the awe worthy noise created by this two man bass and drum combo.
Fabric added a shocking dynamic to the night that built and fed upon the electric atmosphere. Beefy bass riffs and a generous helping of cow bell sent waves of bobbing heads through the crowd.
About 10:30pm and The Turning are ready. They erupt straight into their signature, stylized energetic blues rock ‘n’ roll and the crowd finally gets to their feet.
Not long returned from a series of concerts in the UK and Europe, with gigs in Ibiza and supporting The Strypes, The Turning have mastered their art and have the crowd eating out of their hands.
Like Radiohead to Creep, frontman Luke expresses his reluctance to play the band’s first single, his own, ‘Magazine Street’ but they get on with it anyway and the crowd are pleasantly surprised with a slightly altered, raw, live version with lines about ‘drinkin’ Buckfast wine.’
Sweat dripping from brows, the boys stride confidentially into familiar territory with ‘I cant wait to get over you’.
‘Here’s a wee band from Derry…called the Undertones…’
Completely in their element, here is band born to play live, with the stage presence of a group twice their senior.
After a short walk toward the back of the stage, the boys realise it’s pointless. The crowd want more, The Turning, more than happy to oblige, end on a medley of Them’s ‘Gloria’ and ‘Shakin’ All Over’, the performance exuded pure energy and adrenaline that brought the oldest of custom to their feet.
Speaking to Luke afterwards, it’s back to London on Wednesday, where recording will commence.