Scanners, White Collar Weapons

Kev Eddy 18/01/2008

White Collar Weapons don't quite fit in. It's not just because they're a band made up solely of boys on a bill traditionally famed for girl bands (On The TV's Girls! Girl! Girls! Night): it's also because they're nigh-on impossible to pin down into one neat little generic box.

They're sweetly melodic, yet explode into bursts of noise with a ferocity that make Gallows look slack. They wear the nu-post-punk uniform of shirts and ties, yet eschew the posturings and angular rhythms that characterise Bloc Party, the Young Knives et al, leaning more towards Kooks-esque sound (only not rubbish, of course).

It's obvious, too, that these are four guys in a band who know who and what they are - and judging by the tightness, energy and sheer quality of songmanship present tonight, they're likely to be heading for bigger things.

This is the second G!G!G! Night for Scanners, and it's a very different proposition from the last time they played. Then, they were drummerless and pulled out an absolutely heartbreaking acoustic set. This time, they're firing on all cylinders.

Lead singer Sarah Daly's PJ Harvey-meets-Chrissie Hynde act is as powerful and throaty as ever, lending tunes like 'Joy' and 'In My Dreams' a raw sense of passion. Indeed, there's a feeling that this set is something of a coming of age for the band, as it finally marks the release of their album, Violence is Golden, here in the UK - nearly nine months after its US release.

It's obviously something of a relief to the band to be finally gaining recognition in their own country, and old favourites like 'Lowlife' sound fresher than ever. A triumphant return.