LIVE REVIEW – Dante, 24/11/2017

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Dante , with support from Jamie Bacon, at Mad Hatters, Inverness.

Opening the evening is Perth based, Caithness born, Jamie Bacon. With electric guitar to hand Jamie opens with songs about suicide, death and other joy. This may give the impression of a dour lament but it the sound created emanates an atmosphere even with the backdrop of a noisy bar area. At times sparse it reflects a musical landscape not that far removed from the flow country of Jamie’s homeland. A solid set to open with and hopefully we’ll see Jamie in these parts again sometime soon.

Perthshire’s Dante made the trek north up the A9 on a cold November night with the aim of warming an Inverness audience. It didn’t take long with their high tempo start drawing some early dancing. They also have a vast catalogue to pick from for such a youthful looking band, someone did ask about a 2009 release if they were in primary school then, and some are more heavily trad influenced than others. Latest single ‘Rose’, second song in tonight, sees a more marked indie pop/rock style in comparison with some of their earlier material.

The overall feel is very Celtic with a lean at times to a Dougie MacLean Caledonia which produces a very proud, dancy, jiggy, leap about the room energy. “Ghost’ creates that particular whirl and it’s not lost on the room as spontaneous dancing broke out every time the tempo went up a gear. There is something in there with Dante for everyone to like, and I must admit I’m not overly excited by overtly trad rock bands but Dante hit that balance by luring you in as they moved through their set.

Frontman Sean McLaughlin has a natural rapport with audience bouncing off them with some self-deprecating humour thrown in. This all adds to that feel of closeness with an audience which takes you back to a feel of community and warmth and closeness that comes with a group of friends together and what they can create in, say, a village hall. And that’s everyone in the room, not just the band.


It’s a while ago, but you can read our review 0f the band from 2013;

Dante leave audience wanting more

A notefrom the editor

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Frank Finlayson
Frank Finlayson
Chartered surveyor by day, music reviewer by night, and occasionally I get to use my camera. A strange mix, but one that I enjoy. A chance meeting in the queue for Bella in 2010 led to the opportunity to write for InvernessGigs; a far cry from the days of writing for a football fanzine back in the late 80s, early 90s. My interests lie between the mainstream, the emerging and the local. Increasingly I find that we have more than enough locally to entertain us to necessitate a trip south. I’m always happy to give a listen, whatever the genre. Inverness has a plethora of talent, all of which I am more than keen to write about. If it encourages just one person to make the effort to listen to some new music I’ll be happy. You can contact Frank direct via

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