Local lad Hamish Hawk played this year’s Edinburgh Fringe at Summerhall as part of the Nothing Ever Happens Here (NEHH) Fringe offering for 2021.
Live music night NEHH is delivering its line-up in an area behind the Royal Dick bar at the back of Summerhall under the alias the Secret Courtyard.
This covered courtyard – thankfully not needed this warm evening but helpful for if the more common sodden Fringe weather arrives – allows for an outdoor, socially distanced venue. Tickets were available to buy in bubbles of one, two or four with drinks ordered from your seat and delivered to you.
It was a nice return to live music for Hamish and his band since the enforced hiatus many have had to endure of 18 months. A chance for the songwriter as he admitted to blow away the cobwebs, he was clearly happy to be back on stage in front of a live audience.
The majority of the set was comprised of tunes from upcoming new album Heavy Elevator produced in Rod Jones (also Hawk’s manager) of Idlewild’s Post Electric Studio in Leith. Of which, four singles have already been released and were played tonight – Caterpillar, Calls to Tiree, New Rhododendrons and The Mauritian Badminton Doubles Champion, 1973; The first two having been playlisted on BBC Radio 6 Music and getting some airplay.
Hamish’s songs are full of creativity with words and lyrics portraying stories of life and love sprinkled with cultural references to his homeland and further afield. With sublime vocals and simultaneous elements of humour and sadness all evident, colourful tales are illustrated through his songs.
His beguiling storytelling is charming, keeping the listener’s interest whether it’s an acoustic solo ballad about childhood like Catherine Opens a Window or the Joy Division alike post punk feel of Caterpillar with that intense baseline. This getting the best reaction from the full venue from an overall well-behaved and appreciative crowd.
This is a confident and witty performer with personable and catchy songs that draw the listener in. Hamish surely has a bright future and this was a fine way to ease back into the arena of live performances after our extensive lockdown.
Heavy Elevator is out on 17 September, for upcoming tour dates see here
For more on the Summerhall Fringe Festival 2021 programme click here