Usher Hall, Edinburgh
The Scotsman 3rd December 2001


A FULL hour passes before normally personable Deacon Blue frontman Ricky Ross offers the Usher Hall so much as a smile. And even that only comes after he’s had a four-minute break while partner Lorraine McIntosh takes lead vocals. He hints late in the show that the band’s uncertain future is putting him under some strain: "We’ve got one more show, on Monday night, and I don’t know what’s happening after that."

In the many times I’ve seen the band, Ross has never come across as an aggressive performer. Snarling at his audience through a jaw so tense it might snap off is something new, and McIntosh’s smiles, spontaneity and sweetness have never been more important. Roughly speaking, every second song they play is a gem. If Deacon Blue’s future is in the balance, it made this chance to hear those songs again all the more precious.
Alastair Mabbott