Scotland’s Heron Valley at Bangor Arts Exchange, March 9
Heron Valley is an exciting group of very talented young musicians who hail from various parts of Scotland’s Argyll region. The band name derives from their local area, Strachur, meaning “Valley of the Herons,” said band member Arlene Mackechnie. You can expect to hear a lot of original tunes from their debut album, “ROAM.” Band members joining Mackechnie, who plays piano; are Nick Hamilton, drums and banjo; Abigail Pryde, vocals, guitar; Euan McNab, bagpipes, whistles and guitar; and Callum Cronin, bass guitar.
Heron Valley’s music is inspired not only by tradition, but their love of the wild Scottish landscape as well. “Quite a few of our new songs are influenced by my home,” said Pryde, who is from the Glencoe area of the Scottish Highlands. “Our sets are based mostly on traditional pipe tunes,” she added. “Our songs are more modern. In Scotland there is a modern folk scene going on.” Heron Valley’s songs “are not quite poppy, but not quite traditional either.” “We like that young people enjoy our music,” said Mackechnie, which is also evident when you tour their website.—Independent Record, UK.
Festival crowds love them. The effect of their music “was electric.” They and another Scottish band at the festival had folks “jumping, dancing (and) singing.”—Johnny Whalley, Folk Radio.
The band’s love of what it is doing is patently clear in the crisp, fresh arrangements in the group’s album ROAM.” The mix of songs ranges from “energetic, driving tune sets to thoughtful songs. Their technical ability is beyond good, and everything gels together into a natural-sounding maturity that belies their years. If this is what they’re sounding like now, then the future can only hold great things for them.” —Gordon, Potter, Living Tradition.