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Kid Canaveral / Ballboy / Campfires in Winter – Haddow Fest – The Liquid Room Annexe, Edinburgh – Saturday 10th August 2013

It was the night that Edinburgh went gig crazy with shows by Kid Canaveral, Withered Hand, Sparrow & The Workshop and Art Brut whilst even the Book Festival got in on the act with an appearance by Peter Hook. Undoubtedly every show must have suffered to some extent but reports suggest that attendances were more than decent everywhere despite the horrendous set of clashes.

We’d plumped for the Kid Canaveral show for several reasons. Firstly it was a show that MPK1 could get into. Musically too it was going to be slightly different as the band were accompanied by the Cairn String Quartet for several songs whilst almost incidentally it was also supposed to be their biggest headline show to date in the main room at the Liquid Room.

In the end we didn’t get the biggest show to date but instead we did get a triumphant sold-out show with 250 punters packed into a sweaty venue. It’s perhaps easy to forget that it’s not that long ago that such a turnout  would have seemed beyond Kid C’s reach.

Musically the show only reinforced how much I love this band. The strings certainly added another dimension to the songs they were used on. At contrasting ends of the spectrum – ‘So Sad So Young’ was given an almost chamber orchestra feel whilst the Quartet seemed to dig adding sonic string chaos to set closer ‘A Compromise’.

But the confidence that the band have in their second LP was demonstrated by the fact that we were treated to every song from ‘Now That You Are A Dancer’, including a live debut for the hitherto unaired ‘Skeletons’.

The old favourites continue to burn brightly as well whilst there was a bonus rare outing for ‘Stretching The Line’.

The big Liquid Room show might not have happened last night, but it is surely only a matter of time.

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Ballboy are wonderful aren’t they? Battling probably the worst sound of the evening, they delivered an excellent 8 song set mixing oldies with the odd new song. Gordon’s song titles certainly impressed MPK1 (particularly ‘I Don’t Have Time …’) but set closer ‘A Relatively Famous Victory’ was probably the pick of the bunch.

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Campfires in Winter had opened the show and, on the Scottish indie compass would seem to be set somewhere close to FR by TS. There was something of a Celtic feel to their epic tunes but it was an impressive short set mixing future EP tracks with their last single and older songs too.

A word about the venue after my first visit. It seemed a decent shaped room but suffered from the lack of any elevation for the stage. The sound was a little mixed as well. And, by heavens, it was dark in there.

Kid Canaveral played:

1. The Wrench  2. Who Would Want To Be Loved?  3. Breaking Up Is The New Getting Married  4. Who’s Looking At You, Anyway?  5. Without  A Backing Track *  6. Stretching The Line  7. Good Morning  8. Her Hair Hangs Down  9. Couldn’t Dance  10. You Only Went Out To Get Drunk Last Night  11. Skeletons  12. So Sad, So Young*  13. What We Don’t Talk About*  14. Low Winter Sun * 15. And Another Thing!!! * 16. A Compromise*

* with the Cairn String Quartet

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