Review of James Mackenzie and the Aquascene EP Launch with support from Graeme MacDonald & Matt Norris and the Moon at Madhatters, Inverness on the 22nd of September 2011.

James MacKenzie & The Aquascene

Since the end of the Summer Showcases at the Ironworks there has been an obvious gap in invernessGiGs diary (helped of course by the recent Karima and Megan gig).

The official Pass Me the Bottle EP launch allowed us the opportunity to get back out on a Thursday night and we were pleased we made the effort.

This Silent Forest

The vocals of Graeme MacDonald were floating down the stairs as we joined the gig. The lead singer of This Silent Forest was in good form spending the interlude between songs concerned about German tourists who had popped in and then, subsequently, disappeared. The strength of Graeme’s music is his gentle but assured approach and certainly one we will be keeping an eye on.

Matt Norris & The Moon

Next up, and the main support,  was Matt Morris & The Moon, a band very hard not to like indeed. They will undoubtedly struggle to avoid the comparisons with Mumford & Sons with trumpets, chorus, flow of songs and even the vocal all having similarities. A frustrating position to be in, as a band. However it is, we are reassured ,not a case of reproduction but more an unfortunate coincidence. Despite being a couple of members down, the new folk traits filled the room and provided a great aperitif to the main act.

James MacKenzie & The Aquascene

James Mackenzie and the Aquascene’s profile continues to rise which is, in no doubt, due to the relentless hard work that the band continue to put in. This was the first a three consecutive dates to mark the single release of  Pass Me The Bottle.

The confidence and charisma of James, that never ever crossed to cockiness, was echoed in both the music and performance, This resulted in a set that was both professional and personal.Cap to Wear a relatively new tune, sat well with the more established songs.

James MacKenzie & The Aquascene

It was certainly a partisan crowd, a point recognised by James as he thanked people for coming along. The banter was certainly flowing and we found out things about Fergie from The Black Eyed Peas that we never wanted to know.

At the end of the gig James announced that the band would be back to Hootananny on Boxing Day., which will definitely be one to be at…

By Chris Lemon

Thanks to Thomas Bisset Photography