We look at Table for Four, Guilty Pleasures and more, at the first night of the Black Isle Brewery based festival.

Friday at Jocktoberfest is always a gentle warm-up for the next day’s evident, maybe even the calm before the storm. However this year saw a significant increase in the numbers of festival goers taking full advantage of the two days of camping and it appeared to have a slight impact on the queue to get in (maybe 7pm on the Friday night is not the best time to get in).

The delay is clearly tempered by a general positive vibe, aided by the supportive and friendly staff and volunteers. The festival have picked a stone-age theme this year, and you can never bore of human sized inflatable dancing dinosaurs. NEVER.

Keir Gibson was charged with kicking off proceedings, the singer-songwriter was completing a trio of Inverness dates ( previously having played Belladrum and supporting Kyle Falconer). The crowd gathered as it became darker and the familiarity of The Vaccines cover clearly helped draw folk towards the stage. The Fort William lad oozes confidence and his tunes are worthy of the attention that he is garnering.

The first band of the night are no strangers to Inverness Gigs, Table for Four are an Alness based four piece whose poppy-punky-rocky-indie tunes are starting to get the audience that they well deserve. Tonight Sarah , the lead singer armed with her electric guitar, is taking to fronting the band with aplomb.

The band are flying through the tunes from ‘Loser’ to ‘Jealousy’ at a pace. For us ‘The Blow Job Song’ with the line “She’s down on her knees, she’s not praying, just sayin’” highlights the smart and cutting lyrics. The crowd definitely lap it up, and Ryan, Mads, Sarah and possibly Honda (who straight-laced bass playing creates an interesting contrast) reciprocate. It’s a strong strong set from the band and hopefully they can take full advantage of this.

Next up a party band for a growing party atmosphere in the Barn. Guilty Pleasures describe themselves as the “Scotland’s most fun wedding and function band”. Cover after cover are chucked out by Michelle Newell et al. and the crowd are loving it. “Time of My Life”  is chosen as the set-ender, we would have loved to have seen two of the dinosaurs try the lift at the end of Dirty Dancing, maybe next time.

 Tweed are the last live act of the night their contagious fast paced entertaining take on trad music keeps the party going to the small hours. Job done.The dinosaurs maybe feeling a bit deflated by the end of the night, but hopefully there will be enough puff for the second day.