However, I picked Capercaillie almost as a brief respite from the rest of the Festival mayhem, and on the strength of last night’s show, I’m glad I did.
The 8-piece band play a tight and well-blended mix of traditional Scottish Celtic music, world influences and contemporary sounds, all topped off with the beautiful and at times haunting voice of Karen Matheson. I’ve been a fan of their uniquely Scottish sound for over 20 years now, and it was great to see them play to a mix of fans and first-timers, drawn to the Queen’s Hall by their official Fringe appearance.
Because of that, Capercaillie’s set was slightly curtailed due to timing and the audience reaction was a little muted, given many people’s unfamiliarity with the band. However, the music shone through, and the collection of uplifting and melodic reels, waltzes – as well as some beautifully moving laments and ballads – gave us all a welcome opportunity to hear one of the best Scottish folk acts in the business.
Capercaillie play the Queen’s Hall again this evening.