Pop review

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The Independent Culture
TO COINCIDE with the release of their fine The Boy With The Arab Strap album, Scottish octet Belle & Sebastian (right) get out of their houses to play a handful of dates. It's always been a debating point whether or not they can translate their delicate pop sounds onto the stage, but there's should be some skin-prickling moments. If not, then the support act, Elliot Smith, is a banker for a solid performance. After a few club gigs and an appearance at Reading 98, it won't be too long until this Oregon singer is headlining this joint himself.

Shepherd's Bush Empire, London W12 (0171-771 2000) 7.30pm

Another band out on the road plugging a new album are Mancunians, Puressence, whose brand of moody guitar rock gets a unique lift from the fragile-sounding larynx of James Mudriczki. While not that immediately gripping, they're not a bad option for a Monday evening.

King Tut's, Glasgow (0141-221 5279) 8pm

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