Having never actually heard the group’s vocal chords in any format before, it was somewhat of a surprise to witness lead man John, as his PSB persona J. Willgoose, Esq, come out on stage in a quirky bow tie and introduce the rest of the band (also in shirt and tie) in a stately English accent. Of course, when we later learned that the frontman of the group was a persona called J. Willgoose, Esq, this became significantly less of a surprise. But anyway!
As far as receptions for posh Englishmen in Scotland go, this was a rather welcome one. Public Service Broadcasting’s music is playful, it’s fun, it’s catchy and it lends itself well to dancing. Particularly live, with accompanying and well fascinating archive footage throughout the setlist, each song is a journey in itself - whether that’s through some of the darker days of political Britain or through the American and Soviet's Space Race, as showcased in their immensely popular and impressive second studio album, The Race for Space.
While there are some stage-to-audience call and responses, you don’t get quite the same grip or tether towards the stage that you can from an enigmatic, vocal frontman or MC. PBS have possibly identified this as they did bring out a vocalist onto the stage for one song, but unfortunately she was criminally underused.
Still, watching PSB is an original live multimedia experience, it’s laid back, it’s fascinating, and ultimately, it’s an incredibly fun and creative showcase by a very talented crew.