It’s a rare occasion when I hear something so fresh and awesome that I feel the need to immediately write/tell people/generally rave about it. I think it’s happened once or twice in the four months that I’ve been doing this blog – and today marks another one of these.
I’ve been idly flicking through The Herald’s top 50 Scottish albums of 2014 list for a couple of days now, in the hope of finding some new tunes to add onto my list. And although there have been a few tracks that have taken my fancy, I hadn’t found anything I particularly loved on first listen – until today, that is.
This is supremely talented songwriter Ross Wilson – aka Blue Rose Code – and his stuff is just unbelievably lovely. Part country, part folk, part acoustic indie troubadour, it’s a gorgeous blend of styles and influences that completely blew me away on first listen. So much so in fact that I faced a serious dilemma in deciding which song of his to actually choose from his two studio albums.
So before getting to today’s track, I’d just like to take the opportunity to say this. Stop what you’re doing right now and listen to this guy. Load up Spotify, go to YouTube, visit Soundcloud or LastFM….whatever you have to do. Just check out his stuff. Oh, and before you listen to his latest album The Ballads of Peckham Rye, listen to Whitechapel and Ghosts of Leith from his earlier LP North Ten, which are great songs. (in fact, just listen to the whole thing. It’s bloody amazing).
But I digress. Here’s today’s song – the wonderfully melancholy, lilting and heart-aching Edina from the aforementioned The Ballads of Peckham Rye. And, oh my God, what a tune. Guitar, harp, fiddle and acoustic double bass dance around Wilson’s melodic Scottish brogue as it begs for forgiveness and it’s hard not to feel moved by the time the minor key chorus kicks in. The whole thing is like a smooth, rich blend of the best elements of Whiskeytown, Paulo Nutini and Nizlopi, mixed with sounds and echoes from decades of obscure Scottish indie-folk songwriters, and it’s stunning.
I could only find a live version of the song, but to be honest, I think it showcases the supreme talent on display here even more. However, if you don’t fancy a rough-around-the-edges recording, I’ve also included a video for Whitechapel too. You’re welcome.