In Full

Lifestyle in Full

Scotsman artwork created to mark paper’s 200th anniversary

In paper and ink, it captures the grandeur of Scotland – to mark the birthday of the newspaper that has chronicled the country for two centuries.

News 6
Laura Marling holds a room on her own with her quiet authority and charisma. Picture: Stephanie Paschal/REX/Shutterstock

Music Review: Laura Marling & BBC SSO

Although this was essentially Laura Marling’s night, this year’s Celtic Connections Opening Concert turned out to be as generously populated an evening as previous massed celebrations, with a first half of special guests which felt like a concert in itself.

David Casss art becomes a metaphor for the unstable balance of fragility and permanence that is Venice in his exhibition Pelada. Picture: Jane Barlow

Visual arts review: David Cass – Pelada

If the Scotsman is celebrating its bicentenary, the Scottish Gallery is not far behind. The paper was just a young adult, still finding its way in the world perhaps, when what is now Scotland’s oldest dealer gallery first opened its doors in 1842. Rightly the Gallery is now celebrating its 175th birthday. We should join in with our congratulations too because over that century and three quarters it has made a very significant contribution to the art life of Scotland.

Pavel Haas Quartet brought the wow factor to their concert. Picture: Marco Borggreve

Music review: Pavel Haas Quartet That sincerity was there in an immaculate Fratres by Arvo Pärt, with cellist Peter Jarůšek’s immovable pizzicatos matched by movingly glassy harmonies from the other players. It was there, too, in a harrowing Schubert G major Quartet, D887, which stared coldly at the desperation behind the composer’s heartbreaking lyricism, in violist Radim Sedmidubský’s nastily scrubbed repeated-note figurations in the scherzo, for example, or the turbulence of a closing movement of truly orchestral richness. The evening’s highlight, however, was a blistering account of Bartók’s Fifth Quartet – eerily evocative in its night-music textures; whirling to its out-of-kilter Hungarian dance rhythms; and fearsome in the sheer might of its sonorous climaxes. “Wow,” went a few inadvertent mutterings from audience members, even after just the seething opening movement. Wow indeed. DAVID KETTLE

“The world’s most exciting string quartet” went the rather hyperbolic marketing blurb for the Queen’s Hall’s first New Town Concert of the New Year, from Prague’s Pavel Haas Quartet. But judging by the foursome’s remarkable mix of polish and spontaneity, of micro-control and passionate abandon – well, that description might just hit the nail on the head. There was so much to admire about the Pavel Haas’s playing – their superb technical virtuosity and blazing musicianship almost went without saying. But most gratifying of all was their disarming sincerity: despite stepping hard on the drama, none of their performances felt calculated or contrived. Instead, It was as if they were there simply to share their passions with the Edinburgh audience.

Matthew Schultz of Cage the Elephant performing at the O2 ABC in Glasgow. Picture: Calum Buchan Photography

Music review: Cage the Elephant

Cage the Elephant are a blank canvas, a band without a face. Each of their songs blatantly recalls the work of other, better artists. Ain’t No Rest for the Wicked is a brisk assault on The White Stripes. Trouble is Eels fused to the falsetto hook from Pixies’ Where Is My Mind. The airy funk-pop of Modest Mouse shakes hands with The Strokes on Take It Or Leave It.

The Woman In Black remains chilling and compelling. Picture: Tristram Kenton

Theatre review: The Woman In Black

Even without the interest created by the 2012 film adaptation with Daniel Radcliffe and its distinctly patchy sequel, The Woman In Black retains an impressive capacity to chill and compel. As the wretched protagonist Arthur Kipps notes, ghost stories are a cosy Christmas tradition. Unfortunately, his tale is considerably more psychologically unsettling than a typical Victorian bloodcurdler, with Stephen Mallatratt’s long-running adaptation of Susan Hill’s uncanny gothic novella ideal for these dark days of January, eliciting genuine screams from the stalls.

Guitarist Graeme Stephen, one-third of NeWt. Picture: contributed

Music Review: NeWt

With drummer Chris Wallace back from his native Canada to rejoin Edinburgh guitarist Graeme Stephen and Edinburgh-based Australian trombonist Chris Greive in their unusually-configured trio for a Celtic Connections gig tomorrow night, this was a chance to catch this barnstorming live act back on their old stamping ground. With Wallace’s industrious drumming and Stephen and Grieve sharing between them a veritable conjurer’s trunk of tricksy electronics, NeWt can work up a fearsome, improv-meets-metal dynamic, as in their ominously toned opening number, with its preliminary cymbal crashes and guitar clamour before settling into unison guitar/trombone runs and hard riffing, Greive’s trombone wired to double as a bass, all of it over constantly shifting tempi.

The haggis is piped into a Burns Supper, an international celebration that puts Scottish hospitality on the map.

Stephen Jardine: Burns Night showcases Scottish hospitality to the world

In theory, it should never work. Just a month after Christmas most of us are still feeling a bit abstemious when it comes to food and drink. So the idea of sitting down to another feast based around a sheep’s stomach and copious amounts of whisky should be a non-starter.

Dermot O'Leary presents the National Television Awards on ITV on Wednesday at 7.30pm

Interview: Dermot O’Leary

Dermot O’Leary on Burns, bagpipes and Billy Connolly

The Financial Conduct Authority says that small private investors are paying a high price for a service that does not result in higher returns. Picture: Getty

That Midas touch can prove elusive

The fund management industry is coming under intense – and justifiable – scrutiny, says Gareth Shaw

Personal Finance
Win Butler, lead singer of Arcade Fire, Trump protesters. Picture: Getty

Arcade Fire joins growing list of bands using art to defy Trump

Arcade Fire has joined the list of bands releasing music in protest against Donald Trump’s presidency.

Politics 8
The Mamie Martin Fund helps girls in Malawi to attend school, supported by Alexander McCall Smiths Scotland School Coffee.

Scotland Street Coffee sends girls to school in Malawi

Sales of a coffee brand named after a set of books by Edinburgh author Alexander McCall Smith are to fund the education of a group of school girls in Malawi.

Lifestyle 4
Domonic Matteo of Scotland during training at Ayr United's Somerset Park ground. Picture: TSPL

Picture quiz: Scottish football grounds

CAN you match the club to the correct Scottish football ground?

News 1


Janet Christie’s Mum’s the Word

Why January is that most wonderful time of the year

Author and GP Rob Ewing

Edinburgh author in the running for Costa Short Story Award

An acclaimed Scottish author has been shortlisted for one of the country’s leading short story prizes. Rob Ewing from Edinburgh is one of three writers shortlisted for the annual Costa Short Story Award.

The mask of Alexander Peden which had been passed down through his family for more than 200 years. PIC NMS.

The terrifying disguise of a fugitive church minister

It was the grim mask used to conceal the identity of a 17th Century Ayrshire minister who went on the run and slept in a cave during one of Scotland’s darkest spells.

18 per cent of empty nesters taking part in the survey said they had a hot tub, compared to just 5 per cent of twenty-somethings. Picture: TSPL

Property Brief: Make the most of your empty nest

This week, my household is feeling a bit flat. The Christmas tree has long been packed away, we’ve drunk the Hogmanay leftovers and the festive credit card bill has arrived.

Homes & Gardens
The 'Inner Ring Road' at Port Dundas pictured in 1972. Signage displaying the Ring Road was still present well into the 1990s. Picture: Stuart Baird/

Glasgow’s unbuilt Inner Ring Road

IT famously cuts through Scotland’s biggest city and was the biggest engineering project since the introduction of the railways.

News 6
Battle of Culloden by David Morier, an Anglo-Swiss painter supported by the Duke of Cumberland.  PIC Wikicommons

Jacobites and the slave trade: new study underway

A major new research project to examine links between the failed ‘45 Jacobite uprising and the slave trade is underway.

A stonce circle on Arran's Machrie Moor.

5 Scottish islands perfect for weekend breaks

There’s no better place for a weekend getaway than one of Scotland’s many beautiful islands.

Travel 1
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