More than ever, Idlewild’s set in the open air of Summerhall’s courtyard bore a distinctly Scottish flavour. Much of the audience had hurried along from the opening of the Rip It Up: The Story of Scottish Pop exhibition down the road at the National Museum of Scotland, and this show acted as the unofficial afterparty. The five-piece group played a set rich in nostalgia for their own history with this city, and with a wider sense of the Scots musical lineage to which they’re deeply tied.
Idlewild, Summerhall, Edinburgh ****
The first half of the set was an in-order replay of Idlewild’s third record In Remote Part, now 16 years old. It must have inspired wistful feelings in those who experienced it first time around, although to say so is perhaps to do a disservice to the still-fresh power-pop energy of such key songs as You Held the World in Your Arms and A Modern Way of Letting Go.
There was a particular poignancy to the album’s already evocative closer
In Remote Part/Scottish Fiction, as the words of the late, great Scottish poet Edwin Morgan crackled out over the squall.
In the set’s second half, a mixture of favourites from through the band’s career, there was more welcome looking back with the guest return of original bassist Bob Fairfoull for the early, spiky punk singles Captain and A Film for the Future, and a nod to the future as singer Roddy Woomble confirmed a new album and tour are on their way.