Scissor Sisters, Barrowland Ballroom, Glasgow
Aerosmith, 02, London

The New Yorkers kept a promise and gave their new album its world premiere in Glasgow, to an ecstatic reception

Flattering the crowd is the oldest trick in the showbiz book, but for once it's genuine. Last time Scissor Sisters played Barrowland, they enjoyed it so much that they vowed to showcase their next album here and, impressively, this wasn't bull.

The New Yorkers' third effort, Night Work, does indeed receive its world premiere in the legendary Glasgow ballroom, and Ana Matronic, who admits she was welling up when she heard the famous Barrowland roar from the wings, declares herself an honorary Glaswegian for the night.

It figures that they'd be as good as their word. After all, Scissor Sisters were – maybe still are – a band to believe in. An inclusive Rainbow Nation of male, female, gay, bi and straight, they embodied in terms of gender and sexuality what Sly and the Family Stone did in terms of race, when they first came pirouetting into view.

They may have been too vanilla for some tastes, but what Scissor Sisters achieved in terms of mainstream acceptance of alternative sexualities must not be underestimated. They were a band uniquely able to reach out to anyone, regardless of age and background: I meet at least one person who's literally taken their mama out tonight.

I, for one, was so swept up with the Scissors' liberation philosophy that I came a needle's width from having their logo tattooed on my bicep. But after their second album Ta-Da arrived with an inferior killer-filler ratio to its hit-packed predecessor, I was glad I'd bottled out of that plan.

Tonight, it doesn't take long to remember why I loved them. When Jake Shears, in stonewashed jeggings, trademark braces and a soon-discarded vest, starts dancing like a puppet on invisible strings and Ana Matronic starts crawling towards him like Catwoman, it's as if they have never been away.

Ana's easily Jake's equal as a focus of attention. Wearing a dress made of rubber, her hair in 1940s victory rolls – simultaneously classy and kinky – she's the Sisters' genial ringmistress, in contrast to the more reticent Jake. And a married woman she may be, but she's a much-adored dykon, every bit as popular with that demographic as Shears is with the boys. When she slaps her own posterior, there's a telltale high-pitched scream.

Comeback single "Fire with Fire" isn't working for me yet, but other Night Work excerpts such as "Whole New Way" seamlessly reprise the Scissors' trick of fusing dancefloor grooves with charleston/ragtime/ vaudeville daftness, and can live alongside oldies such as the Parton-channelling "Laura", the Teutonic perv-pop of "Tits on the Radio" and the hillbilly disco of "I Don't Feel Like Dancing".

On the basis of this first taster, that tattoo might be back on. At least a temporary henna version ...

There are many bands who could lay claim to being the inspiration for Spinal Tap, but Aerosmith's case is among the most convincing. The Tap's "Hello, Cleveland!" moment is the sort of thing that happened to Steve Tyler and Joe Perry on a regular basis in their Seventies pomp. On one occasion, for example, the band decided to reverse the normal order of their set, which so disorientated a drug-damaged Tyler that he sang the first song (normally their last), triumphantly yelled "Thank you, good night!" and strode off into the wings.

Make no mistake, this is a band who've lived it. Steven Davis's official Smith-ography, Walk This Way, easily the match of Mötley Crüe's The Dirt, charts their rise from playing scuzzy dives where Hell's Angels fought to the death in front of them to making their name as the archetypal good-time Southern boogie outfit (no mean feat for a band from Boston), to the scandalous behaviour that accompanied their imperial phase. In guitarist Joe Perry's case, this meant getting through heroin like it was sugar on his Kellogg's. In Steve Tyler's case, it was shacking up with a 14-year-old whose legal guardianship he somehow obtained from her parents.

My favourite anecdote, though, is the one about produced Jack Douglas hanging live crabs from the ceiling of a studio whose light switch was on the far wall, then sending in studio manager Jay Messina to fumble his way through the crustaceans' furious pincers. It highlights a childishness which has served Aerosmith well over the years, as the innuendo-laden "Falling in Love (Is Hard on the Knees)" reminds us tonight.

If they sometimes feel like they need a rest, it's hardly surprising. The Cocked, Locked, Ready To Rock tour was preceded by protracted rumours that Tyler was about to retire, and even talk that Aerosmith might replace him with Lenny Kravitz (arguably an even more disastrous idea than Mick Hucknall fronting the Faces).

Thankfully, Tyler's back in the saddle, romping up the catwalk in silver lycra flares for "Love in an Elevator". (There aren't many bands who, when wondering how to give the start of their show a lift, can go for the literal option.)

It's often said that hooking up with Aerosmith helped to break Run DMC – and rap in general – into the mainstream, but in Europe the opposite was true. Prior to "Walk This Way", most Brits couldn't name an Aerosmith song with a pistol pressed to their temples. Indeed, they aren't even credited on the seven-inch.

To us, therefore, they're a phenomenon of the late 1980s/early 90s, by which time they were already endearingly ragged old tarts, their revival powered by those Alicia Silverstone-vehicle videos. Tonight, it's one of those songs – more than "Walk This Way" – that will live in this writer's memory. "Cryin'" is the ultimate tears-in-your-beer rock ballad, and I scream along, like the rest of the 02, with no irony whatsoever. You can giggle at Tyler and Perry as hard as you'd giggle at Tap's Tufnel and St Hubbins, but when they can pull a song as great as that out of the bag, who's having the last laugh?

Next Week:

Simon catches Kele Okereke, a chip off the old Bloc

Arts and Entertainment
Performers drink tea at the Glastonbury festival in 2010

GlastonburyWI to make debut appearance at Somerset festival

Arts and Entertainment
Lena Headey as Cersei Lannister

TV reviewIt has taken seven episodes for Game of Thrones season five to hit its stride

Arts and Entertainment
Jesuthasan Antonythasan as Dheepan

FilmPalme d'Or goes to radical and astonishing film that turns conventional thinking about immigrants on its head

Arts and Entertainment
Måns Zelmerlöw performing

Arts and Entertainment
Graham Norton was back in the commentating seat for Eurovision 2015

Arts and Entertainment
The light stuff: Britt Robertson and George Clooney in ‘Tomorrowland: a World Beyond’
film review
Arts and Entertainment
Reawakening: can Jon Hamm’s Don Draper find enlightenment in the final ‘Mad Men’?
tv reviewNot quite, but it's an enlightening finale for Don Draper spoiler alert
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment

ebooksNow available in paperback
Arts and Entertainment

Arts and Entertainment
Breakfast Show’s Nick Grimshaw

Arts and Entertainment

Arts and Entertainment
'Youth' cast members Paul Dano, Jane Fonda, Harvey Keitel, Rachel Weisz, and Michael Caine pose for photographers at Cannes Film Festival
Arts and Entertainment
Adam West as Batman and Burt Ward and Robin in the 1960s Batman TV show

Arts and Entertainment
I am flute: Azeem Ward and his now-famous instrument
Arts and Entertainment
A glass act: Dr Chris van Tulleken (left) and twin Xand get set for their drinking challenge
TV review
Arts and Entertainment
MIA perform at Lovebox 2014 in London Fields, Hackney

Arts and Entertainment
Finnish punk band PKN hope to enter Eurovision 2015 and raise awareness for Down's Syndrome

Arts and Entertainment
William Shakespeare on the cover of John Gerard's The Herball or Generall Historie of Plantes

Arts and Entertainment

Game of Thrones review
Arts and Entertainment
Grayson Perry dedicates his Essex home to Julie

Potter's attempt to create an Essex Taj Mahal was a lovely treat

Arts and Entertainment
A scene from the original Swedish version of the sci-fi TV drama ‘Real Humans’
Arts and Entertainment
Hugh Keays-Byrne plays Immortan Joe, the terrifying gang leader, in the new film
filmActor who played Toecutter returns - but as a different villain in reboot
Arts and Entertainment
Charlize Theron as Imperator Furiosa in Mad Max: Fury Road
Arts and Entertainment
Jessica Hynes in W1A
tvReview: Perhaps the creators of W1A should lay off the copy and paste function spoiler alert
Arts and Entertainment
Power play: Mitsuko Uchida in concert

Arts and Entertainment
Dangerous liaisons: Dominic West, Jake Richard Siciliano, Maura Tierney and Leya Catlett in ‘The Affair’ – a contradictory drama but one which is sure to reel the viewers in
TV review
Arts and Entertainment
Richard Herring, pictured performing at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival two years ago
Arts and Entertainment
Music freak: Max Runham in the funfair band
Arts and Entertainment
film 'I felt under-used by Hollywood'
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

ES Rentals

    Independent Dating

    By clicking 'Search' you
    are agreeing to our
    Terms of Use.

    Abuse - and the hell that came afterwards

    Abuse - and the hell that follows

    James Rhodes on the extraordinary legal battle to publish his memoir
    Why we need a 'tranquility map' of England, according to campaigners

    It's oh so quiet!

    The case for a 'tranquility map' of England
    'Timeless fashion': It may be a paradox, but the industry loves it

    'Timeless fashion'

    It may be a paradox, but the industry loves it
    If the West needs a bridge to the 'moderates' inside Isis, maybe we could have done with Osama bin Laden staying alive after all

    Could have done with Osama bin Laden staying alive?

    Robert Fisk on the Fountainheads of World Evil in 2011 - and 2015
    New exhibition celebrates the evolution of swimwear

    Evolution of swimwear

    From bathing dresses in the twenties to modern bikinis
    Sun, sex and an anthropological study: One British academic's summer of hell in Magaluf

    Sun, sex and an anthropological study

    One academic’s summer of hell in Magaluf
    From Shakespeare to Rising Damp... to Vicious

    Frances de la Tour's 50-year triumph

    'Rising Damp' brought De la Tour such recognition that she could be forgiven if she'd never been able to move on. But at 70, she continues to flourish - and to beguile
    'That Whitsun, I was late getting away...'

    Ian McMillan on the Whitsun Weddings

    This weekend is Whitsun, and while the festival may no longer resonate, Larkin's best-loved poem, lives on - along with the train journey at the heart of it
    Kathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath in a new light

    Songs from the bell jar

    Kathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath
    How one man's day in high heels showed him that Cannes must change its 'no flats' policy

    One man's day in high heels

    ...showed him that Cannes must change its 'flats' policy
    Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

    Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

    Dominic Rossi of Fidelity says his pressure on business to control rewards is working. But why aren’t other fund managers helping?
    The King David Hotel gives precious work to Palestinians - unless peace talks are on

    King David Hotel: Palestinians not included

    The King David is special to Jerusalem. Nick Kochan checked in and discovered it has some special arrangements, too
    More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years

    End of the Aussie brain drain

    More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years
    Meditation is touted as a cure for mental instability but can it actually be bad for you?

    Can meditation be bad for you?

    Researching a mass murder, Dr Miguel Farias discovered that, far from bringing inner peace, meditation can leave devotees in pieces
    Eurovision 2015: Australians will be cheering on their first-ever entrant this Saturday

    Australia's first-ever Eurovision entrant

    Australia, a nation of kitsch-worshippers, has always loved the Eurovision Song Contest. Maggie Alderson says it'll fit in fine