After missing out, for various reasons, on previous shows, I finally managed to score tickets for Sofar in Edinburgh
I’ve always been fan of Sofar’s ethos; secret bedroom gigs for the musically discerning, concerts held in close spaces far from the din and clatter of busy bars and pub back rooms. They don’t tell you the address or the names of any of the acts before you arrive, a policy which went some way to creating a sense of anticipation about the show.
So, last week we went along to the Biscuit Factory — which, despite the fact it’s a freezing, nearly derelict, leaking old industrial unit, is becoming one of my favourite venues in the city (perhaps it reminds me of home) — and saw SiNK, Alabaster de Plume, Gaze is Ghost and Jambouree.
Sat on the floor with picnic rugs; bread, hummus and beer; and about a hundred other strangers made for a cheery, communal atmosphere that’s hard to find, even in Edinburgh’s hole-in-the-wall scene. Gaze is Ghost opened the evening and was probably my favourite act of the night; experimenting with both pared-back piano and vocal arrangements and with loops and drum machines for interesting, intimate set. Her soulful, down-tempo cover of Heroes may be the only Bowie cover I’ve truly enjoyed.
Alabaster de Plume performed a set of slam poetry/spoken word with a guitar hanging by his side and provided a fitting segue into SiNK’s mercurial bohemian folk act. I’m no fan of jazz in any capacity outside of film music and cafes (this piece I wrote about a Soviet jazz film composer for The List is proof), but I enjoyed Jambouree’s freewheeling style nontheless. If you can get hold of tickets for these secretive gigs, then do it.