Mumford and Sons on Tuesday night. This was rather amazing for numerous reasons, not least that Inverness ain't exactly the hot spot for Grammy-calibre artists. First, I got up at 5:30am to stand in line - people had camped! - and I was still ticket number 361. How cool to limit tickets to 2 per person, £20 each, and no internet or phone sales? Old school, these guys - were they even born before the internet existed? Staging was simple: hanging lights and instruments. That's the light board in the photo - I actually *saw* them thanks to a step behind the lighting board box - this is amazing as my 5'1" self usually gets to see armpits and breasts at shows. Highlights were the keyboardist playing so hard that his keyboard shuffled and slid along the stage, the banjo and dobro player on his back with legs in the air like any good bluegrass player, and the guys switching instruments throughout. It's so refreshing to hear a band actually play, actually sing harmonies, and actually have a blast doing it - these guys are the real deal. For one night, Inverness felt like the center of the world.
M and I are rediscovering music after buying our new car - the poor Polo's stereo system was akin to a late-80s ghettoblaster - and one of our faves is Elbow. Their show with the BBC Concert Orchestra is stunning, and their new record Build a Rocket, Boys!, which came out this week, is fantastic. Great sweeping melodies and pretty instrumentals and lovely, soothing vocals. Delicious. Am also rocking Ellie Goulding and Tinie Tempah, who is the most articulate rapper I've ever heard interviewed.
So, apparently Spotify is heading to America. This is brilliant, as it's a dream music streaming service that is also available via 3G on the iPhone for £10 or £5 per month - or free if you can handle the short ads between every 3 songs. You can share playlists with friends so there's a social networking element, and they've got 10 million tracks available. I can remember twice that I didn't find what I wanted to hear - one was the new Eminem record when it came out, (now available) and Adele's new record isn't on there yet - though her singles are. Good stuff.