Saturday, 1 September 2012

HELEN McCOOKERYBOOK: Reviews Martin Stephenson

Martin Stephenson and Scott MacDonald at The Braes, Dunoon
After a ferry trip that was more like a bad acid trip (why is that man staring at me? Why is that woman staring at me? Why is everybody staring at me?), we disembarked at Dunoon and walked up the hill to The Braes, a brand new venue and restaurant with lovely polished wood floors that bided well for the acoustics of the show. Scott was already there setting up the PA and Martin arrived a few minutes later.

Scott' s set showed off his fine rhythm guitar playing. As a songwriter he's the master of the chorus and he is an energetic and endearing performer. He played several tracks from his new album, that surely warrants a listen.

Martin turned in an amazing set; he played a lot of his Merle Travis inspired material to start off with (he has invisible extra fingers) with his own unique feel, laid back and yet sharp at the same time. Later, a good-natured heckler started calling out the names of Daintees songs and we were grated to a lovely rendition of 'Slow Loving' and then some of the more energetic songs: 'Little Red Bottle' and 'Running Water'. He manages to doing like a whole band all by himself. Which reminds me of his ace joke from the other night. He was playing Tony Iommi added to Robin Campbell from UB40. 'Iommi Campbell', he quipped.

I choked on my coke.

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