Shooglenifty Review

Submitted by faysie1 on Sun, 15 Aug '10 9.37pm
Rating (out of 5)
Show info
Angus R Grant (Fiddle), Luke Plum (Mandolin), Garry Finlayson (Banjax), James Mackintosh (Drums), Quee Macarthur (Bass), Malcolm Crosbie (Guitar)
Running time

I met a friend at the bus stop on the way to see Shooglenifty on Friday night. When I told him I was off to the review the band for the Guide, he snorted and said I could have stayed at home to write the review, given how much I enjoy the ‘Shoogle Sound’. Very true, I replied, but where’s the fun in that? Because, dear reader, if you are in need of fun, I would prescribe a healthy dose of Shooglenifty.

This was my third trip to see the band at the Fringe, and they have not yet disappointed me. Back in the wonderful Spiegel Tent, which was sadly missed last year, and which seems to be the band’s spiritual home in Edinburgh, they put on another great show.

It’s quite difficult to put the ‘Shoogle Sound’ into words – after a couple of minutes of waffling on about ‘acid crofters’ and ‘celtic fusion’, I normally end up saying to people, ‘just go, you’ll get it when you hear it’. What you do get is a wonderful blend of traditional music and funky dance rhythms, which just make you want to get up and start reeling and jigging. The ‘back row of guitar, bass and drums, provides the ideal foil for the ‘top line’ of fiddle, banjo and mandolin.

Again, no chance of telling you the names of most of the tracks – even if fiddle-playing frontman Angus Grant had told us, I was too busy dancing to write anything down. But I do remember we had ‘The Dancing Goose’, ‘Excess Baggage’ and a Lochaber rumba – from West Lochaber, which seemed to be an important demarcation – all of which had the crowd rocking and reeling.

Sadly, all too soon it was over. A high-octane, foot-stomping encore and then they were gone. Thanks for another great night guys, see you next year!

Show times
26-27 August, 7pm

Ticket prices
£15 (£13)