Newton Faulkner returned to The Ironworks last Sunday, much to the delight of his devoted Highland fans.

"Colin’s easy going and humorous banter combined with his sincere and captivating voice made him an instant hit with the Ironworks crowd. "
“Colin’s easy going and humorous banter combined with his sincere and captivating voice made him an instant hit with the Ironworks crowd. “

The evening started off with some superb support from singer songwriter Colin Macleod and without doubt The Boy Who Trapped the Sun has become the man who captures the audience’s attention. If you check out his current Facebook page you could be forgiven for thinking he has a fairly small following, however as The Boy Who Trapped The Sun he had gained a substantial fanbase that are following him into new pastures. Colin’s easy going and humorous banter combined with his sincere and captivating voice made him an instant hit with the Ironworks crowd.

He opened with his song ‘Saints’ from his newest release ‘The Anchor EP’. We heard a few more tracks from the EP and they were spot on. Colin has really harnessed what it means to be a good singer songwriter; great melody, captivating lyrical and emotional content and the perfect delivery.

Someway into the set he gave the crowd a choice of two covers he could perform; a Bruce Springsteen cover or his own version of the Toy Story theme ‘You’ve Got a Friend in Me’. The crowd burst into shouts for Toy Story and so we were treated to a lovely rendition. Colin’s new single ‘California’ will be available for digital download from the 3rd March 2014.

A warm welcome back

We moved swiftly from one talented man with his guitar to another. Newton returned to our Inverness stage like an old friend, however he always has some new tricks up his sleeves. Newton Faulkner opened with the first track ‘Where to Start’ from his latest album ‘Studio Zoo’ and then bookmarked his other three albums with a song from each. A great start. Over the years, Newton’s set has become more complex, yet he still makes it look so easy!

"One of the highlights for me was watching Newton create some incredible new sounds by howling into the sound-hole of his guitar, it really was something else."
“One of the highlights for me was watching Newton create some incredible new sounds by howling into the sound-hole of his guitar, it really was something else.”

He challenged us to do the ‘Do you think I’m using a loop?’ quiz before alerting us to the fact that he is working all the pedals, including what sounded like a grand piano, with his feet. One of the highlights for me was watching Newton create some incredible new sounds by howling into the sound-hole of his guitar, it really was something else.

Newton knows how to keep his crowd entertained but also amazed by his unique musicianship and his thought provoking and beautiful songwriting. The set was pleasantly varied, drawing out songs from all four of his albums. The crowd were delighted to hear old favourites such as ‘Teardrop’ and ‘Dream Catch Me’ but also responded well to his new single ‘Indecisive’. In between songs and sips of his ginger & honey tea (very rock’n’roll) the repartee with the audience was in full flow and it appears that over the years, the dread-locked singer from Surrey has built up a steady relationship with his Inverness fans.

Newton gave us a bit more insight into the creative process of his 2013 album ‘Studio Zoo’. His studio was opened up 24/7 to the web resulting in constructive comments and criticism from the public the entire way. He had some odd ways of developing his material, for example, taking somebody’s advice that it helps to ‘rip off’ other artists -leading to a hilarious and scarily accurate Kings of Leon impression. The entire venue was in stitches.

As usual with Faulkner, crowd participation was highly encouraged and we were split into groups to provide some impressive harmonious backing vocals. The gig was certainly value for money, it was a lengthy and wonderful set followed by a three-song encore. But alas, even though I feel the crowd would have been happy to keep him, it had to end.

After a quick ‘selfie’ with the crowd – ‘Holy cheese balls, that’s awesome’ – were Newton’s words on the matter, we bid him adieu but with the highest hopes that he will return.

More photos of Newton Faulkner at The Ironworks.