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Showing posts from December, 2018

The Filthy Tongues

The Liquid Rooms, Edinburgh
Four stars

The mini spotlight attached to Martin Metcalfe’s microphone lights up the Filthy Tongues’ vocalist’s face with a celestial glow that casts even more shadows on an otherwise black-swathed stage. This gives the now annual festive appearance by Metcalfe and co the stylistic demeanour of a demon-purging hellfire club.The scene set, Metcalfe and fellow core members, bassist Fin Wilson and drummer Derek Kelly, proceed to reclaim their neglected past with 1980s/90s shoulda-beens Goodbye Mr Mackenzie as much as keeping a gimlet eye on the future. The opening bump and grind of Come on Home from their second album, last year’s Back to Hell, is followed by late-period Mackenzies number, Crewcut. This fits seamlessly with the gothic noir of Leper Town and Carlos The Jackal that follow.

Augmented by guitarist Alex Shedlock and percussionist Asim Rasool, this five-piece incarnation of The Filthy Tongues unleash barrages of swamp-deep thunder wielded like weapons …

Mayo Thompson and Charlie Abel - The Red Krayola

There aren't many genuine underground sixties legends living in Edinburgh, let alone one who, after 40 years, is still making credible, cutting-edge music. Mayo Thompson, however, who for the past four decades has remained the mainstay of The Red Krayola, is very much such a figure.
In his colourful musical journey, he's gone against the grain of wacked-out 1960s Texan psychedelia and helped create post punk in London's late-1970s Ladbroke Grove scene as one of the driving forces behind Rough Trade Records, before, in the mid-1990s, being courted by a new generation of Chicago based musicians - a period that saw that city's Drag City Records release a plethora of Red Krayola material old and new.
Now, however, with the release of Introduction, the band's first album of new material for five years, Thompson has teamed up with Aberdeen-born ceilidh-band accordionist Charlie Abel to add a brand new Caledonian influence to the musical melting pot that is The Red Krayola.…

Theatre Highlight of 2018 - Pussy Riot: Riot Days

Maria Alyokhina’s Herald Angel-winning multi-media stage version of her memoir of prison life was a dramatic call to arms like no other. Charting the aftermath of Alyokhina’s arrest in 2012 alongside two of her comrades in anti-authoritarian Russian collective Pussy Riot following their ‘punk prayer’ in a Moscow orthodox church, Yury Muravitsky’s production was a fifty-minute multi-media collage of text, electronica, martial drumming and archive projections. Performed in Russian with English surtitles by Alyokhina and a quartet of actor/musicians, Riot Days necessitated Alyokhina to smuggle herself out of Russia for the show’s ten-night Edinburgh Festival Fringe run at Summerhall. The result was relentless, defiant and inspirational.
Part of The Herald's Cultural Pick of the Year, in which twelve writers chose their personal highlight of 2018, December 29th 2018.
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