Peat and Diesel at Ironworks Venue, Inverness.

 

 

Coming from a sell-out gig at Glasgow’s Barrowlands in January the next stop for this astonishing “Peatalmania” phenomenon known as Peat & Diesel, was the Highland capital Inverness.

Stornoway’s answer to “The Pogues?” came to Inverness on Valentines night to bring their Second album (light my Byre) to an excitable full house at Ironworks, who says romance is dead?

I’d been hearing lots about this “Peatlemania” but have until now not managed to go and see P&D play live, and to be honest I had no real clue what I was going to witness. I have heard many different thoughts on Peat & Diesel ranging from “the best thing to come out of the isles” to “what the hell are they and how did they get this far?” to be fair, the trio said on more than one occasion they’re not sure how they got to this stage either.

So what is the attraction of this band? They appear to have started out with the intention of being a local pub band looking to have a laugh and entertain regulars at local pubs with songs that mostly only make sense to said locals; I suspect that mission was accomplished very early on. However, their appeal has grown much wider; everyone I spoke to at Ironworks that came to see them said that they loved the banter, the nonsense and the daftness, they love the comedy and the fact that they do not take themselves seriously, this was evident on stage right from the start.

Accordion player Innes Scott mentioned before the first song that they can’t find their set list and that they have the wrong ear monitors so can’t hear their instruments properly, technically things did not improve throughout the night but no one cared, this was part of the charm of this trio that has helped make them so much loved by their fans, Innes did say that if they are still going this time next year they will come back and promise to practise first.

I’m not going to go in to the songs in this review, if you’ve not heard them before then nothing I could say would make sense and if you have heard them before you don’t need me to tell you what you already know and love.

Guitarist and vocalist Calum “Boydie” MacLeod is a firm fan favourite with his “Unique” singing style and voice but one thing did stand out about Boydie I was not expecting, he genuinely can play his guitar and with some decent amount of skill, which I think is overlooked by the fans amongst all the fun and nonsense. Something that is not overlooked by the fans though is his voice, comparing it to the legend that is Shane MacGowan from the “Pogues” by his fans, makes me think one thing….it works for Shane so….

Peat & Diesel played their set like they were playing to twenty of their good friends at a local pub except they were playing that way to nearly a thousand friends at the Highland capital’s biggest venue, fair play to them.

I’ll leave you with a review I saw on Amazon for their first album (Uptown Fank) from Drew L-J.

“Sheer brilliance, so evocative of my days living on the West Coast of Scotland, I can clearly see the characters portrayed in the songs. Top guitar playing, top accordion playing and the Hebrides answer to Shane MacGowan on vocals. Yellow Wellies, Drink and Grannies. Love it.”

Peat & Diesel are Calum ‘Boydie’ Macleod on guitar and vocals, with Uilleam Macleod on drums and Innes Scott on the box. You can catch them on Feb 23rdat the Liquid Rooms Edinburgh before they head off for a three date tour in Ireland.

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