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  • Alistair Braidwood

Alasdair Roberts and St Kilda…

A quick heads up about another gem buried away in the Celtic Connections programme. It’s an unusual double-bill where Alasdair Roberts shares headline honours with David Allison’s multi-media performance of the St Kilda Tapes. Here’s what the programme notes say about Roberts:

‘Sometimes likened to a Scottish Will Oldham, Alasdair Roberts forges his own distinctive alloy of ancient and modern balladry, alternately brooding and tender, mythic and deeply personal.’

Roberts last album Spoils was a fantastic piece of work, and 2003’s Farewell Sorrows is another that is highly recommended. Here he is performing Carousing:

The St Kilda Tapes uses footage from the last days of habitation, and the emigration, of that now uninhabited island. It is part of a larger project, The Island Tapes, which was shown at the festival in 2007. Celtic Connections says:

‘Combining archive film, newly created video and live music performed on guitar, zither, ukulele and sampler, David Allison’s The St Kilda Tapes is a moving multi-media meditation on themes of home, displacement, travel and belonging.’

Here’s the brief introduction that gives a taste of what to expect. Having seen the archive footage on its own, as it were, I think this cannot fail to be a moving and fascinating show.

They are on at St Andrew’s in the Square on Friday 22/1/10. I may see you there.


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