Inverness Talking Heads tribute act ? Is there one ? When they do form they need to give this guy a shave, stick him in a big suit and let him do the warbling. Toastie (this is what I was reliably informed was the gentleman’s name) announced he was going to do a Heads cover but I certainly didn’t expect to hear one of my favourite tracks This Must Be the Place (Naive Melody). He said it’d be a different take on it and it was but…..Wow. Perfect. This thrown in with a Postal Service cover and 5 or 6 of his self-penned numbers – including some ingeniously inserted Lionel Ritchie lyrics – made for an interesting and unexpected but extremely enjoyable half hour. Toastie was physically shaking when he sat down I’ve never seen or heard of the guy before but the young crowd in the Market obviously had. I have to admit when he took to the stage in his dress shirt, trousers and shoes, shaking like a leaf I wondered what the fuck we were about to get – pardon the turn of phrase but this was a definite SuBo moment for me. The mans brilliant and he got more and more brilliant as his confidence grew !! The aforementioned young crowd were obviously made up of friends and fans – he ended up thoroughly enjoying it as did I. Then he got drunk !! Legend indeed and my new favourite pop sensation !!
Bloody Iain Mclaughlin and his bloody Outsiders !! Bloody bloody and stuff !! They were bloody good, bloody hell they were good. I havent paid much attention to Iain and his band of merry fellas on the blog of late – album launches etc. Shame on me!! I almost didn’t go and see them tonight but Pels offer of a neck massage was too great to pass up. I didn’t realise that he meant me to give him a wee rubdown – oooer !! Glad I did – attend that is, not rub Pel although…….!
I said to Iain, gushingly after 3 tins of cider, that having seen him umpteen times solo and the full band on many occasions that I was really quite awfully impressed with their stripped down semi-acoustic stylings. It all worked. Pel ripping out some lovely effect laden guitar with the aid of Bryan and his pedal-table and Russell rattling away on his box sounded great in the confines of the wee Market Bar. Small but perfectly formed :). He did mention during the set that he’d noticed that although it’s a stripped down version of the Outsiders (no Dave or Drums) each one of them continued making their full-band on-stage RAWK faces. A joy to watch ? Fucking hilarious in parts (as were Iains opening salvo of Frankie Boyle style humorismisms – less said the better) I’m reliably informed that this will have been the last semi-acoustic or acoustic thing for a while so nae luck if you stayed in !!
Amazing, though, to watch Iain punt out the same amount of passion and power whether sitting atop a stool on the tiny stage of the Market Bar or prowling the main stage at Belladrum. Flanked by Pel, Bryan and Russell he rattled off all the goodies from the album, We Are All Outsiders, as well as a belting rendition of Suspicious Minds, ahuhuh. The mad thing is I still DO NOT own a copy of this album. Must remedy that (scuse the pun) If you were there then you were treated to a couple of hours of the Market at its best – beer and brilliant music. If you weren’t then you just weren’t then.
A busy wee period coming up for Iain and his cohorts. Friday 27th July they present their last WEAREALLOUTSIDERS Club Night at Mad Hatters, Inverness with support from Fires Attract and Special Guests The Hazey Janes. Free entry. No offence to the Outsiders but that’s worth attending for the Hazey Janes alone – wonderful.
1.55pm or thereabout on 4th August should find them at taking the stage at Belladrum Festival on the Hothouse Stage down the hill a bit. They follow that later in the day with a Rockhopper session for Netsounds / goNORTH, an MFR session with ma wee pal the Radiowifie, Ms Scott and they will be live on BBC ALBA between 9.30 and 11pm. Fucking hell – lots of behaving themselves on the 4th then………..mebbe ! Bu toigh leam bracaist a ghabhail cha toir, ach bheir mi dhut sgailc! *
Back on the gig horse the following weekend for a trip up to B-Fest in Wick where they are headlining the goNORTH tent. Great lineup up there too – check it out here. The young sirs then get rehearsing for their next gig. Theyre cutting down on the amount of chords they use and are set to support the mighty Quo on 24th August at the Northern Meeting Park here in Inverness before playing the aftershow party at the Ironworks. Turin Brakes is their last support slot that I’m informed off for the time being – that’s a semi-acoustic outing in the style of other semi-acousticy, semi-acoustic fully-electric bands who have stripped down to a semi-acoustic setup for a gig.
‘WEAREALLOUTSIDERS’ is available in HMV Inverness, Imperial Music, on iTunes and of course at all the gigs . Fuck – I’m knackered just listing all of that.
* Scots translation……. “I would like to have breakfast no, but I’ll slap you!”