Edinburgh Fringe 2017
A set of great tunes from this emerging force on the Scottish traditional music scene.
Gnoss are a quartet of musicians all studying at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland. And Graham Rorie, Aidan Moodie, Connor Sinclair and Gregor Kincaid certainly know how to write and play good tunes in the traditional Scottish style. Comprising percussion, fiddle, flute and guitar (plus a few other instruments to provide a bit of variety), they played an excellent set before a busy Acoustic Music Centre audience in their new home on the prestigious Royal Terrace down in the New Town.
Energy pulsed throughout many of the pieces paraded before us, with jigs, reels and jolly good “foot-tappers” interspersed with the occasional ballad and the obligatory Scottish folk song where the heroine dies a tragic death following the loss of her love. Well, you need one of these in each gig to dampen the mood a bit.
This quartet is as happy singing as it is playing, with each member having a pleasant voice, at ease if required to lead the song or whether just adding a pleasing harmony to underpin the melody line. They write a lot of their own tunes as well, with Graham Rorie particularly to the fore in this regard, drawing no doubt from his life as an Orcadian, a part of Scotland famous for the breadth and quality of its musical heritage.
Already much in demand as a support act to the great and the good on the Celtic music circuit, on the evidence of this performance, it can’t be too long before we see Gnoss emerging from the shadows as a lead act at events such as Celtic Connections, the annual jamboree hosted in Glasgow.
For the appreciative audience it was all over far too quickly. The warmth of their applause matched the warmth of Gnoss’s performance. Gnoss clearly enjoy playing together, have a great empathy with their chosen musical genre and are definitely a band to watch out for. Catch them at a folk festival near you as their short run at the Fringe has, sadly, come to an end.