Indigo Velvet, a tropical-pop infused four-piece from Leith, take to the stage at The Liquid Room to play their biggest headline show to date.
Starting the night at 7:15 was solo artist Mt. Doubt, accompanied by his backing band. Included in Mt. Doubt’s team of musicians was Mark Morrow, local Music Producer at Mark Morrow Audio, playing lead guitar. Mt. Doubt describes himself as Alt. Rock/Dark-Pop, and this was quite apparent as their set went on. With three guitars, a keys player, bassist and drummer, Mt. Doubt was not short instrumentally. With the use of backing tracks to accompany the start and end of some songs, Mt. Doubt created a set that seemed to flow effortlessly, song after song. Switching between a Fender Jaguar and a Gretsch hollow-body, he was able to make full use of the tones each guitar had to offer, creating a plethora of sounds for each song. Accompanying his guitar was the addition of an acoustic guitar, an interesting addition to a band already consisting of two electric guitars. Although the acoustic guitar seemingly appeared to be playing the exact same parts that Mt. Doubt was playing, it did come into it’s element on a couple of occasions where prolonged strums were needed to create a certain atmosphere. The use of a combination of three total vocalists, including the frontman himself, really added to the general sound of Mt. Doubt, as chorus’ etc seemed to sound big and full. An overall strong performance with very little to criticize, Mt. Doubt turned in a strong performance, more than capable of warming up the growing number of people culminating the floors of Edinburgh’s Liquid Room.
Main supports for IV came from The Vegan Leather, an Art-Pop four-piece band hailing from Paisley, Scotland. Fronted by Gianluca Bernacchi, The Vegan Leather most definitely have their own sound, easily distinguishable by the funky beats and catchy hooks of most of their songs. Boasting tens of thousands of Spotify streams, The Vegan Leather are most definitely not a band you should be overlooking in your search for great Scottish bands. Marie and Gianluca work as a great pair vocally, often choosing to sing the same parts as the other as opposed to the conventional harmonies created by two vocalists. Instead, the songs are often shared between the two. The difference in tone and pitch of their voices both equally compliment and contrast that of the other. Percussionist of The Vegan Leather, Duncan, uses a refreshing combination of pads and his conventional drum kit, being able to switch between the two when necessary is a talent that must be admired. Despite one hitch with what appeared to be caused by either his pad or the backing track, Duncan was able to keep the whole band in time, offering up some tasty fills and patterns as he did so. Bass Guitarist, Matt, was able to offer a range of interesting and groovy bass lines, which fit the songs perfectly. His use of Bass Pedals really added to the effect of his role in the band, choosing to use pedals that altered the tone of his bass greatly, pedals which I did not get the chance to look at, but from the sounds of things, he had an extensive range of sounds to his disposal. Near the end of the set, Marie ditched her Jazzmaster, offering additional percussion to Duncan, in the form of a cymbal and clave block. An interesting decision for the band to make, but in no ways a bad one, as the sound only added to the interesting sound of The Vegan Leather. Gianluca was able to fulfil his role as front man, leading the band on their journey through their set. Paired with a great amount of onstage presence and very apparent skill on the guitar, Bernacchi is definitely the man to front such a unique and creative band. A great performance from TVL, well worthy of the main support slot on the bill. With only a couple of technical difficulties, the band powered through their set and left a good impression on the now almost packed crowd at The Liquid Room.
Following a twenty-minute interval, the anticipation of the crowd was finally quenched, as lights dimmed to the sound of “Indigo Velvet”, the intro track from their new EP “Vol. 1”, blaring through the PA at the Edinburgh venue. To the cheers and applause of the now full Liquid Rooms, on came Indigo Velvet. The band consists of Darren Barclay, front man and guitarist, Jason Tucker, lead guitarist, Billy McMahon, percussionist, and Laurie Adam, on bass guitar. Transition from “Indigo Velvet” into “Mississippi” seamlessly, it was clear Indigo Velvet were ready for battle, a well-oiled machine that had evidentially been preparing their set for quite some time in the run up to the gig. Following the end of the second song, Darren introduced the band, which proved not necessary as every person in the packed-out venue had an obvious understanding of who the four-piece were. First announced mid-July, tickets had been selling steadily for the past five months, which was clear to see as you looked around the venue, which appeared to be close to selling out. Continuing through their set with songs such as “Hold Me” and “Rugrats”, the Leith-locals were most definitely on top of their game, receiving roars of support after the end of each song. Following “Rugrats” with their unreleased song “Jumanji”, IV were able to slow things down around half-way through the set, only to bring things straight back up with their 2016 release “Sunrise”, bringing a steady incline into the energy of the second-half of their set. Continuing their stride through their performance, the crowd was treated to their most recent single this year; “Mona”. A personal favourite of mine, I would go as far as to say their rendition of it was on-par, if not better than the recording. The partnership of Jason and Darren’s voices together is a critical part of Indigo Velvet’s signature sound, which was very prominent in the song, note for note, the pair were able to fully do the song justice to a full extent.
Following the end of “Mona”, Indigo Velvet left the stage to the wall of screams and shouts from The Liquid Room’s electric crowd. Working in partnership with Steven McKay of Scruff of the Neck promotions, IV and SOTN were able to drum up massive numbers of support and interest in the gig, with lines forming down Victoria Street.
The band responded to the cries from the crowd, coming back onto the stage one last time, to perform the last songs of the night. Jason introduces “City Boys” followed by "Sierra Leone". An electric ending to an incredible set closes the night of live music at The Liquid Rooms. Clearly moved by the vast support offered up by the number of people standing in-front of them screaming and cheering, the band were outwardly expressive of their appreciation of everyone in attendance, commenting on the crazy notion that four men from Leith could pack out the venue on a Friday night, their biggest headline show date. In my opinion, it was not hard to believe that this feat could be achieved by IV, a clear big name in Edinburgh’s growing scene of bands. Four years of hard work and dedication has brought them great success in the past year or two, and the only way Indigo Velvet can go from here, in my opinion, is up. A quick photo of them standing with the vast crowd behind them, and the night was finished. Indigo Velvet left the stage knowing they had given the performance of a lifetime, at a critical show for the tropical four-piece. With so many in attendance, it would be very hard not to make note of this band’s current success.
Indigo Velvet may just be the hottest band in the Edinburgh scene right now, and they are most definitely worthy of a listen or five. With chemistry, ability, and clear knowledge of how to bring themselves across, Indigo Velvet should be in your top list of bands to look out for in the new year. I forecast a great year for IV, growing on their already unique sound, and impressive fanbase.
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