The Main Stage : Rory McLeod, Alex Rex, Chronic Mishaps & Yoko Pwno

Saturday 23rd : Gatehouse Primary School

Doors Open 7.30pm

£12 b4 : £15 door


Rory McLeod

An ex-circus clown and fire eater, he is a one-man-soul-band, and poet.  He has a natural troubadour's talent for weaving magical, musical, storytelling spells accompanied by his own bizarre solo orchestra of distinctive instruments.  The spoons, finger-cymbals, bandorea, Djembe-drum, harmonica, guitar, trombone and-tap-dancing shoes accompany the "rich, raw, deep and resonant" voice of this "singular and liberating performer."  "Expect the unexpected."  McLeod is a musical Gypsy, his eccentric melodies are infused with influences from Flamenco to Country blues, through to Celtic, East European and Calypso rhythms creating a style of music and songwriting that has been described as "Intimate, revealing, political and powerful."

"When he sings his songs he will take you on a journey with him."  "Poetry and dance-stories with verve, sharpness, humour and warmth about people and for people."  "Great songs to dance to, infectious rhythms, flying harmonica!"

Alex Rex

“I’ve got a mind like an open sewer,” Alex Neilson, aka Alex Rex told The Guardian's Jude Rogers last year.  The Trembling Bells drummer, songwriter and occasional singer released his solo project's debut album last year, assisted ironically enough by Bells colleagues Mike Hastings on guitar and Lavinia Blackwall on keyboards.  Rory Hayes on bass completes the line-up.

Described by Rogers as “a modern Ginger Baker, yelping and skittering on stage” (for a Galloway audience that may conjure up an image unintended by the metropolitan press!), Alex has played with a veritable who's who of the folk-rock aristocracy, including Mike Heron, Shirley Collins and Alasdair Roberts.

His debut solo album Vermilion gained generous critical responses last year, including 4 stars from Record Collector: “charred folk worthy of Comus at their most baleful and austere”.  Aside from a session on Cerys Matthews' 6Music programme, live appearances from Alex Rex have been in short supply, so Midsummer Music is delighted to welcome him and the band to Gatehouse for what promises to be a hugely exciting set, displaying influences ranging from Gregorian chant to Dylan, and Captain Beefheart to the Incredible String Band.

Chronic Mishaps

If you’re not struggling for oxygen and drowning in your own sweat by the end of the gig then you’re not dancing hard enough! The Chronic Mishaps use their punk-tinged ska to poke fun at the establishment and to reflect on the smaller and more annoying things in life. With an irreverent attitude, the Chronics aim to entertain - if you can’t dance to it then they won’t play it.

Hailing from all corners of the UK, various band members have been searched by the Austrian police, shown passports to dudes with machine guns in order to play a gig and been impaled onto a toilet only to be cut free by paramedics. The guitarist recently, despite his age, landed a kick-flip on his skateboard without breaking his ankles, and the bass player has been pissed on twice by the same monkey.

Between them various band members have supported SubHumans, Asian Dub Foundation, Sensor, The Orb, Kasabian and The Blockheads.

This bunch of misfits will run you ragged, leave you breathless and fill your head with music so contagious that only a full frontal lobotomy will allow you to forget your evening in the company of the Chronic Mishaps.

And lastly….

with two saxophones, a worryingly electrocuted singer, a rabble of harmonies, a bucket of energy and catchy tunes, the Chronic Mishaps will smash your face in and unbalance your cochlears. Taking you on a sweaty journey of relentlessness, the toilet and the bar will have to wait until the Mishaps are off the stage - there is no down time and you won’t want to stop dancing!

Yoko Pwno

Edinburgh based folktronic party starters Yoko Pwno are delighted to be playing Midsummer Music. Formed in 2014, the band have built up a sizeable buzz, blowing audiences away with a live show described as 'trippy, diverse, innovative, unique and oozing raw natural talent and creativity'. The mixture of Lewis's' traditional melodies and fiddle playing, Lissa Robertson's jaw-dropping vocal and Ali and Calum's innovative spacey electro-funk makesss for a show as exciting as it is unique. The band are currently recording their debut album with producer Iain Copeland (The Peatbog Faeries, Sketch), with a release planned for later this year on Skye Records.