Acoustic set offers an intimate experience with The View’s lead singer – Kyle Falconer.

Words and pictures by  Al Donnelly 

Straight away I’ll get the disclaimers in.  I’m simply not on the ball enough at gigs to actually take any notes or pay attention to information being proffered by artists on the stage.  I’m all about the photos so bear with me if this is full of inconsistencies, falsehoods and plot holes.

Kyle Falconer eh?  Who’d have thought that by the end of this weekend he’d officially be a regular at The Gellions in Inverness but by Sunday he’ll have played three gigs there in their Upstairs venue in quick succession and all sell outs to boot.  Its a cracking wee venue they have there too – perfect for small acoustic shows although the first two acts did struggle to be heard over the fairly boisterous audience of Kyle fans.  Still, packed house on a wet and windy Thursday night in Inverness—can’t beat that.  Well done Upstairs !!

First of those acts was Craig Weir who is normally found around Dundee with his backing band The Cabalistic Cavalry.  Teamed up with keyboardist (is that a word?) Dan Richardson, they played a mix of old and new bluesy rock ‘n’ roll tunes with some ‘jazz hands’ thrown in for good measure. All self-penned from Craigs back catalogue and front catalogue (…and thats where the not paying attention bit kicks in – soz folks). Banter was on point—would definitely give them another listen.

Next, Manchester’s Neeve Zahra with breathtaking vocals and beautiful melodies, assisted by Kyle’s buddy, Drew Palmer, on guitar. A couple of covers, but her original stuff stole the show, showing a songwriting wisdom beyond her years. Country vibes, right up my rodeo y’all.  Highlight for me for sure.

Finally, the man himself, Kyle Falconer, along with Drew Palmer and by the time they hit the stage, the place was absolutely rammed.  I was still battling the purple light/dry ice combo, a nightmare for any photographer. Kudos to Ross (Upstairs) for flicking the ON switch on some nice white light. I may or may not have proposed marriage to him at that point  

Who cares?” I hear you shout?  Shut up and tell us about Kyle Falconer and stop moaning about LED lights”.  OK – apologies…

The set opened with ‘Stressball’ which is a personal favourite of mine after he played it for a Netsounds Session which we filmed at Belladrum in 2022.  Pure belter of a track and really showcases Kyles gritty vocal.  His craic was good and and Drews guitaristing (another new word) is superb (especially on Neeve’s stuff) and we even got a George Ezra impression out of Mr Falconer.  

Now, I’m always conscious in packed out wee gigs like this that I’m taking up viewing space for the punters.  Naebody wants to look at the back of my heed when they’ve paid to see the act on stage so I bailed after 4 songs to get out of the way and let everyone get on with having a good time.  

Anyhoo – thats yer lot.  Go and check all of these acts out on their various social media platforms – facetwitter, shopify, vinted, eBay and all that jazz !!

Phew – think I got everything in.  Socials – check, Music stuff – check, disclaimers – check, moan about dry ice and lights – check and check.  This reviewing larks a dawdle…maybe Ill stick to cameras eh.