Live Review: Giuda

Italians’ rock gets lost in translation.

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If you didn’t know better, you might assume you’ve stumbled upon a bunch of mechanics pretending to be 70s rock heroes during their lunch break. A grinning, bouncing singer in a boiler suit punches the air to almighty greaser riffs, while a plaid-clad backing band churn out chant-rock tunes indebted to Quo, ZZ Top and AC/DC, in which girls in tight blue jeans still stand beside something called a ‘record machine’.

This is Rome’s retro rockers Giuda, proud holders of the horny blue-collar rock torch, upholding time-honoured garage-rock traditions from the gaslight anthem of Working Class Man to the air-punching trucker taunts of Teenage Rebel and Bad Days Are Gone.

Their accents provide plenty of misheard lyrical laffs too: ‘What are you woman?’ guitarist Lorenzo appears to sing, instead of Wild Tiger Woman; Roll On seems to insist that we ‘do the Interpol’ during a gig that doesn’t best lend itself to wailing miserable two-note impressions of a goat being strangled. But over 90 minutes their classic rock variety pack is gradually infiltrated by a filthy, mid-paced glam stomp that ultimately consumes the entire set, lodging Giuda in a formulaic furrow.

Despite the odd punk moment, a Costello slant to It Ain’t Easy and a vibrant cover of Elton’s Saturday Night’s Alright For Fighting, Giuda run short of ideas and chug to a cheery but ignoble end.

Ah well, back to the panel beating.

Mark Beaumont

Mark Beaumont is a music journalist with almost three decades' experience writing for publications including Classic Rock, NME, The Guardian, The Independent, The Telegraph, The Times, Uncut and Melody Maker. He has written major biographies on Muse, Jay-Z, The Killers, Kanye West and Bon Iver and his debut novel [6666666666] is available on Kindle (opens in new tab).