Elgin Cathedral the unlikely star of new dream pop track by Berlin-based musician Pink Mario

Berlin-based pop artist Pink Mario has released a new song with an unlikely inspiration - Elgin Cathedral.

Whether its a nostalgia-soaked memory or a far flung place, music has the power to transport us - which is why writing a song about Elgin Cathedral may feel like an unusual choice to some.

But that's exactly what Berlin-based artist Pink Mario has done.

Pink Mario is the moniker of Lazlo Barclay. Pink Mario is the moniker of Lazlo Barclay.
Pink Mario is the moniker of Lazlo Barclay.
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Also known as Lazlo Barclay, the artist's latest release focuses on the historic ruin in Moray.

He said: "I always wanted to write a song set in the Scottish Highlands, where my ancestors hail from. Elgin Cathedral is my homage to them, and an attempt to capture the mysteries of winter; as well as the solemn, yet beautiful feeling of loneliness."

What's the track about?

Barclay's persona began as a way for him to explore his fascination with the universe, with Pink Mario an alien who has become marooned on Earth. Since 2020 he has released 18 songs and 2 EPs, generating more than 1 million streams.

His latest track hopes to transport listeners to a surreal version of Elgin in the winter which has been completely abandoned. The lyrics wander through the town as the narrator explores, wondering where everyone is and questioning if the situation is real or in his head asking: "Oh what’s going on Elgin?"

The artwork for Pink Mario's single Elgin Cathedral. The artwork for Pink Mario's single Elgin Cathedral.
The artwork for Pink Mario's single Elgin Cathedral.

The eerie dream pop ballad looks to capture the feeling of loneliness through an exploration of the town in the winter, attempting to lure the listener through the foggy streets and deeper into the ruins of Elgin Cathedral.

Throughout the song, verses are punctuated with Barclay singing "Elgin" fully immersing listeners in the strange place he's found himself.

Why Pink Mario decided to write about Elgin Cathedral

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While Barclay is from London, his father grew up in Helensburgh and as a child his family would visit the Highlands.

Speaking with the Press and Journal, Barclay said: "I have had a fascination for the Highlands since visiting with my father growing up, and I stumbled upon the ruins of Elgin Cathedral when I was reading up about Highland history. My cousins have since moved to close to Elgin."

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The track is Barclay's way of paying tribute to his family's Scottish history and the artist has plans to visit the landmark.

Elgin Cathedral music video

The music video for Elgin Cathedral is a compilation of home videos shot by Barclay's grandfather.

On Instagram, he shared: "Everything you see in the music video was shot on cassette between 1970-1975 by my grandfather - which made it a pretty emotional experience for me to edit.

"There’s so much more to say about what this song and the video means to me, but for now I just hope you enjoy them and let them take you somewhere meaningful.

"I’ll try to tell the full story as best I can in the coming weeks!"

Elgin Cathedral will feature in Pink Mario’s debut album, M4, which is set for release in October 2024.

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