Skip to main content

Best Girl Athlete at St Machars Cathedral!

Something pretty special happened last night. Local band Best Girl Athlete played the first gig of their short Scottish tour and which brings them to the Museum of Scottish Lighthouses in Fraserburgh tonight and Glasgow's Pipe Factory tomorrow. But last night saw them grace the stage of St Machars Cathedral and it was incredible. 

Bringing a host of talented friends with them it wasn't just Best Girl Athlete who blew me away but everyone who played. Philip Joseph Rae delivered a swathe of downtempo, heartfelt songs which dealt with themes all too appropriate for a church setting, the lychen covered gravestones outside must surely have been moved by the performance. And The Great Bear also tackled some deep themes dedicating his first poem to his beloved whom he married in that very church although I'm not sure she was too happy about the wording of his grandfathers poem, alluding to being cheated into marrying a lass on false pretences of imminent child birth. The Great Bears performance was vastly different to the quiet person I'd met, instead commanding the stage with ease and confidence, no mean feat when your face with a 130 strong audience in Gods house! And especially one as majestic as St Machars Catherdral.

Finally after a quick run around to see some old friends who'd popped up on various church pews it was time to settle in for Best Girl Athlete. Now having worked on the video's for Leave It All Behind and more recently Hills I've developed a great appreciation for debut album Carve Every Word so I was excited to see how things would play out. Bringing in master celloist Pete Harvey and the incredibly talented Chemical Callum on the piano it was sure to be a special performance and it didn't dissapoint. From the first strums of Best Girl Athlete I started to feel my cheecks tingle, a feeling I usually get when seeing something special like Radiohead in Oxford in 2001, Sigur Ros at the Barrowland when () came out and now Best Girl Athlete at St Machars Cathedral. 

The next 50 odd minutes heartfelt dedications, some embarrising poo stories, incredible cello solo's, with a few CS Buchan classics and beautiful renditions of Leave It All Behind & Hills. Katie's vocal range is absolutley stunning, harmonising but never over reaching and creating some beautiful and evocative sounds in that stunning setting. Things got a little overwhelming for Best Girl when her dad brought out a suprise birthday cake though, after all its not everyday you get turn 16  while playing songs which you've put your heart into in a cathedral filled with your friends and family. And its this family bond, this support and group of friends which makes not only Best Girl Athlete but the whole Fitlike Records ethos worth supporting. Not to mention the wealth of talent they're uncovering up North!

To think this is only the beggining for Katie and already shes recorded an incredible debut album and is holding her own on stage. Incredible to see her grow with each performance and I can't recommend enough seeing her live before she really takes off! Debut Carve Every Word is available here. And hats off to Still Burning Photography for capturing these stunning shots which really say it all!

Popular posts from this blog

Painted Doors 2017 - Year 2 Recap!

It's been a busy old year and I for one cannot wait for the christmas break. I'm lucky to be off til the new year and I'm hoping it'll be a chance to catch up and take stock. Its certainly been another busy year for art and culture in Aberdeen and especially putting art into the public realm. Nuart Aberdeen, Look Again Festival and Painted Doors both provided lots of incredible opportunities, and the artworks were nae bad as well. But with famous street artists and international design stars on the programme, what makes Painted Doors special?

Firstly all the artists are from or are based in Aberdeen. And many of them are new faces to me which is a good sign that we have a healthy creative scene in the city. I pride myself on getting out and meeting artists and creatives and spend a lot of time trying to help promote and shine a light on their work but even in the big village of Aberdeen where everyone knows everyone its fantastic to come across new faces. The artists fo…

NUART Aberdeen - Part 1, Production Week!

By now the sight of a giant yellow cherry picker at the Indoor Market is a common sight with hundreds of photos appearing across Instagram and Facebook. NUART Aberdeen kicked off last week with the arrival of our first artist Martin Whatson. I had the pleasure of seeing Martin at work up a cherry picker in Stavanger for NUART 2014, a sight that definitely makes you stop and stare. Having initially met team NUART on their first few visits to Aberdeen I'd offered to help in any way I could and was given the role of artist host. I would be meeting them at the hotel, showing them around and hopefully giving them a little insight into our fair city.

So on a sunny Wednesday we headed to airport to meet the infamous Martin Whatson. Being the first to arrive I was a little unsure what to expect, after all I've been a huge fan of street art for 10+ years and to be honest the whole concept of NUART in Aberdeen has been blowing my mind for months. So when this tall blonde Norwegian appear…

Painted Doors Aberdeen Project Recap!

With spring upon us new artists will be added to the painted doors line up and well have a fine selection of large scale walls by the NUART Aberdeen which is kicking off tomorrow with a host of international talents. I wanted to share all of the completed doors to date and shine a bit more light on the door artists, collating them all before part 2 kicks off. Already the doors have had a big impact on local business and the people who frequent them such as Contour Café and Cafe52 on the Green. With a clear view of Katie Guthrie and Cosmic Nuggets doors, Contour is the perfect spot to get some lunch and a perfect view.
With the doors stretching from just off the Green to the far end of Langstane Place you can have yourself a nice little walk along the back streets, avoiding the bustle of Union Street. Its a nice way to connect up some Aberdeen's more overlooked areas and really conveys for me what art can do, in making us look at our surroundings a little differently and seeing the …

'Darkness Can't Exist In The Light' by Jo Muir at The Anatomy Rooms!

If you've been in town recently then you'll certainly have seen the banners and posters proclaiming "Art is the new Oil" although I think its less a proclamation as it is a question. The poster is part of a campaign by Citymoves Dance Agency to promote their 3 week festival of dance which finished a few weeks back. Now partner organisation with The Anatomy Rooms (Citymoves have taken on the large open plan dissection rooms) they aim to bring contemporary dance to the forefront of Aberdeens cultural offering. I'm sad to say I couldn't make it the various events but did get a look at Jo Muir's exhibition, organised to coincide with the festival.

Jo is one of the numerous artists based in the Anatomy Rooms studios and has spent the last 12 months hiding from day light and working out her ideas. She was finally ready to present a new body of work which seemed like a perfect fit with Dance Live and so over the course of 3 weekends the show was open to the publi…

'Past, Present And Future Subversions' by Dundee Print Collective!

If you go down to Dundee today you're in for a big surprise! And its not a teddy bears picnic. To say Dundee is a city on the up would be a slight understatement but its also not entirely true. You see Dundee has been up for a while, at least in my view with its world class arts centre The DCA complete with café, bar, cinema and screen printing facilities, the fantastic art school Duncan of Jordanstone (still one of the best degree shows I've been too) and the benefits of affordable space which has helped numerous artists and collectives thrive and led to great intiatives like Creative Dundee.

Last year some friends put me onto Dundee Print Collective. Made up from a group of artists and paying members, their aim is simple, to promote print making and making it accessible for everyone. Founded in 2014 the group has held numerous shows and been part of a huge exchange event which saw their work travel to China. DPC have consistently pushed their mandate and a quick scrawl throug…