Music review: Christmas Carousal, Platform, Glasgow

RM Hubbert' was part of the annual alternative Christmas celebration at Platform along with Carla J Easton, Kid Canaveral frontman David MacGregor in solo guise as Broken Chanter and composer and multi-instrumentalist Aby Vulliamy
RM Hubbert' was part of the annual alternative Christmas celebration at Platform along with Carla J Easton, Kid Canaveral frontman David MacGregor in solo guise as Broken Chanter and composer and multi-instrumentalist Aby Vulliamy
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Now in its fifth year, this festive celebration of independent music is a much-needed comfort blanket. The latest line-up performed, as always, on the set of Platform’s annual Christmas show. I haven’t seen Mother Goose Fae Easterhoose, but I can tell you that it involves a static caravan in a twilit woodland setting. By happy accident,this backdrop actually complemented the music.

Christmas Carousal, Platform, Glasgow ****

First up was the prodigiously talented Aby Vulliamy, who performed avant-garde classical compositions on violin and accordion. She also covered a couple of fragile numbers by her frequent alt-jazz collaborator Bill Wells.

Broken Chanter, a solo project from Kid Canaveral lynchpin David Macgregor, specialise in warm, wintry indie-folk: sad Highland beach music. Macgregor is such a great songwriter, he even managed to perform a non-embarrassing and quietly universal tune about meeting his wife for the first time.

Another great singer-songwriter, Carla J Easton charmed us sideways with her ‘60s girl group-influenced pop. Easton’s voice, a huge pure wail with a hint of hiccup and rasp, is quite something. Maybe it’s the season talking, but I found her semi-humorous Christmas ode to her late cat, Bez, quite moving. And hats off to her for bothering to dress in Santa red.

“Let’s play some songs about death, shall we?” deadpanned headliner RM Hubbert, a Glasgow underground stalwart and virtuoso folk/flamenco-influenced guitarist. His mesmerisingly intense yet darkly comic set was the perfect way to end this defiantly unorthodox Christmas party.

PAUL WHITELAW