Norman Blake and Euros Childs at the Strathaven Hotel

In the third of a series of concerts at the Strathaven Hotel, a packed function room was treated to a varied and entertaining evening of live music. 

His peers and associates James Grant and Lloyd Cole have already performed, and February’s special guests were no less prestigious – Teenage Fanclub frontman Norman Blake and the band’s latest addition, Euros Childs, one time Welsh whizzkid frontman of Gorky’s Zygotic Mynci.

MacIntyre and daughter Amelia provided the warm-up as Rubber Revolver, performing a short set of classic covers from The Beatles’ best albums, Rubber Soul and Revolver, accompanied by Stuart Kidd on drums, before Kidd followed up with a batch of his own bittersweet melodic songs, setting the harmonic tone for the main event.

Blake and Childs have previously recorded together as playful indie pop duo Jonny. The pair make complementary musical partners, being natural born harmonisers. The blend of Blake’s classical pop instincts and Childs’ proclivity for the eccentric and mischievous produced the offbeat Wich Is Wich and Candyfloss, both from the Jonny album, while Childs added a baroque synthesizer flourish to Baby Lee.

There were a couple of comical accidents with drinks, and a moment when Norman and Euros turned into Strathaven’s version of Antique Road Trip, but the goofily shambolic presentation was not reflected in the effortless execution of Teenage Fanclub’s wistful I Don’t Want Control of You, with Kidd chiming in for tight, transcendent three-part harmony, and the sheer soaring pop joy of their version of The Who’s The Kids Are Alright.

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