Ten days of music, film, comedy and spoken word at The Pleasance Sessions 2014

Ten days of music, film, comedy and spoken word at The Pleasance Sessions 2014

Two Wings

Confirmed performers include The Twilight Trio, Vic Galloway, Roddy Hart, Neu! Reekie! and Paul Foot

For the second time, The Pleasance Sessions brings a feast of music and arts to Edinburgh University’s famous theatre. Nina Glencross previews this year’s lineup

It’s one of Edinburgh’s grandest venues, yet the Pleasance is often overlooked outside the month of August when it’s transformed into a bustling Fringe venue. Thankfully, after a successful first year – including a nomination for Best Small Festival at the Scottish Event AwardsThe Pleasance Sessions returns to help put the theatre back on the map, with ten days of music, film, comedy and spoken word events open to the general public.

The festival’s launch night features majestic trio The Twilight Sad with support from Hidden Orchestra (Thu 9 Oct). From there, each evening is curated by a host of musicians, promoters and publications from around the country, starting with BBC Radio DJ Vic Galloway, who brings Glasgow cheeky chaps Casual Sex, Broken Records and the mesmeric LAW to the theatre (Fri 10 Oct). ‘I hope people will enjoy them all and appreciate the sonic diversity going on in Scottish independent music at large,’ he says. ‘This is just the tip of the iceberg!’

With a bill featuring TeenCanteen, FiniTribe, Richard Jobson and Liz Lochhead, Edinburgh-based art collective Neu! Reekie! promise, ‘a veritable artistic buffet’ (Sun 12 Oct). ‘We try and season in hidden themes to each of the shows and capture a shared synergy in the acts – sometimes only for our own comfort and amusement,’ reveals the collective’s Michael Pedersen.

Elsewhere, beloved performer Beerjacket brings his 10th anniversary celebrations to the festival (Mon 13 Oct). The alt-folk singer-songwriter hosts a special night featuring friends and collaborators from over the years, including Fatherson’s Ross Leighton and Fake Major. ‘You can play a gig anywhere,’ he says, ‘but a theatre like the Pleasance demands a show.’

There’s also the addition of the internationally renowned Independent Market Label (Sat 11 Oct) and the return of Och!Toberfest (Fri 10-Sat 11 Oct).

Och!Toberfest was such a success last year that we thought we would combine that with the Label market day, add a bit of bunting and celebrate the fact we have such a wide range of Scottish brewers and labels in one place,’ explains festival organiser Rae Baker. ‘What better way to celebrate than £3 pints, a bunting overload and a full label showcase from [record label] Olive Grove?’

Featuring Woodenbox, The Moth and the Mirror, Call to Mind and Skinny Dipper, the label's Lloyd Meredith hopes the showcase will ‘see some collaborations between some of the Olive Grove family’ (Sat 11 Oct). Fellow independent label Middle of Nowhere present an equally exciting showcase, headlined by Roddy Hart and the Lonesome Fire (Tue 14 Oct).

Here at The List, we’re bringing together Prehistoric Friends, Two Wings and Ubre Blanca with the stunning visuals of Adventures in Light, along with TYCI DJs (Thu 16 Oct). And alongside the return of comedian Paul Foot’s sell-out Fringe show, Edinburgh University’s Folk Club holds an intimate evening with Ben Sands (Wed 15 Oct).

The Insider Festival returns with A Night at the Theatre, Remixed (Fri 17 Oct), before The Phantom Band and Remember, Remember bring the festival to a close (Sat 18 Oct).

‘There’s an enormous amount of talent in Scotland,’ adds Baker. ‘The Pleasance Sessions gives a unique stage to come and experience something really special in Edinburgh.’

The Pleasance Sessions, Pleasance, Edinburgh, Thu 9–Sat 18 Oct, dustymoose.co.uk.


Scotland's breweries join forces to make a magnificent, beer-fuelled Oktoberfest beast. Participating breweries include Caledonian Brewery, Barney's Beer, Stewart Brewing, Inveralmond, Scottish Borders Brewery, Harviestoun Brewery and Thistly Cross Cider.

The Pleasance Sessions: Middle of Nowhere Presents …

The Middle of Nowhere Label showcase features Roddy Hart & the Lonesome Fire, Pete Roe, Miss Irenie Rose and Colin Mcleod.

The Pleasance Sessions: Neu! Reekie! Presents …

Neu! Reekie! presents Dave Hook, Liz Lochhead, Richard Jobson, Teen Canteen and Fini Tribe (theatre).

The Pleasance Sessions: Olive Grove Records Presents …

Olive Grove Records Label showcase presents Woodenbox, Skinny Dipper, The Moth & the Mirror, Call to Mind (theatre), plus there's an after party in the cabaret bar.

The Pleasance Sessions: Paul Foot

The surreal and chaotic Paul Foot presents his Hovercraft Symphony in Gammon # Major.

The Pleasance Sessions: The Insider Festival Presents …

The Insider Festival presents A Night at the Theatre, Remixed.

The Pleasance Sessions: The List Magazine Presents …

The List's very own evening as part of the Pleasance Sessions brings together Prehistoric Friends, Two Wings, Ubre Blanca, plus TYCI DJs and visuals by Adventures in Light. Sounding like Jean-Michel Jarre meets Kraftwerk, Ubre Blanca are an exciting electronic duo whose synths and darker reverberations are reminiscent of…

The Pleasance Sessions: Blanck Mass, RM Hubbert, Bdy_Prts, Outblinker

The Skinny presents electronic solo project Blanck Mass, guitar instrumentals from RM Hubbert, indie electro duo Bdy_Prts, and electro-kraut-rock from Outblinker.

The Pleasance Sessions: The Twilight Sad

Melancholic soaring sounds from indie rock band Twilight Sad.

The Pleasance Sessions: Vic Galloway Presents …

Galloway presesnts Casual Sex and LAW plus special guests.