Beth Rowley, Mull Historical Society @ The Louisiana, Bristol 27/09/2018

Mull Historical SocietyMull Historical Society released classic debut album Loss over 15 years ago. A musically rich collection of songs performed on record largely by Colin Macintyre, the band's charm has always been to soak songs in a tapestry of instrumentation; everything from the classic to tapes and programming devices. Macintyre can get a tune out of anything, it seems. Having played a few acoustic shows of late, it’s thrilling to see a stage packed with equipment; especially since new album Wakelines allows rarer instruments to flutter beautifully across more upbeat indie pop songs Mull Historical Society are famed for.

There’s definitely been a fuller house at The Louisiana this evening as Beth Rowley ushers the crowd forward. It’s not a bad shout. Having toured with a band all summer, tonight the select few get a very intimate and stripped back offering of her soulful, bluesy vibes. Rowley begins howling over a harp as her rather dapper mop-haired guitarist fights her corner with subtle electric tones. Perfectly poised with licks between her breath, the two are joyously harmonious tonight. Beth recently had the pleasure of writing with Ron Sexsmith and she dazzles mid set with the co-written “Brother” off her latest release, proving the spirit of Janis Joplin is very much alive.


Like a boxer coming out to his song, Macintyre bounds on stage to a backing track fit for those who were born on the Outer Hebrides, the choir of Mull. Their classic upbeat charms are in full swing through recent releases “The Lights” and “Build Another Brick”. Loss classic “I Tried” sounds as timeless as any great songs. It’s also Macintyre’s cue to explain how the band were given a grand to make a music video for the song, only to spent it and end up running around the Highlands filming Sheep. “The Final Arrears”, is another wonderful collage of dream-like pop for what is also a salute to his uncle's passing, which he somehow makes rather comical.

Before the band leaves the stage, “Little Bird” offers a truly beautiful acoustic moment, and sets the scene for the next few solo songs wonderfully. “Barcode Bypass” also getting a respectable sing-along. There’s another Loss classic before the band bow out. It’s been a successful return to Bristol for Mull Historical Society.


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