5 Stars for our Electric String Orchestra Show with Stanley Odd!

Stanley Odd with The Electric String Orchestra and Paul Gilbody *****

The antiheroes of today — relevant, musical, passionate and faultless

By Jack McLuckie | Monday 05 August 2013 | 17:33:00 UTC Stanley Odd

On 2 August 2013, after being treated to two hours of sheer musical pleasure, a packed Queen’s Hall screams for an encore. Out walks Solareye, rapper of Stanley Odd, smashing any misconceptions the general public may have had about Scottish rap music. Solareye’s a cappella story told of a divorce between Caledonia and Britannia, and summed up the genius of this gig.

There is a refreshing honesty about Stanley Odd. The at-times nervous interplay with the audience between songs captured the attention almost as much as the tight rhythms, memorable choruses, subtle layering and intelligent lyrics – all delivered with an assured confidence in their music and ability. He was backed up by an eight-piece version of the all-female Electric String Orchestra — who themselves demonstrated great skill by blending into the diversity of Stanley Odd songs.

In the opening act, armed with a guitar, a Boss RC50 loop station and a considerable amount of talent, Paul Gilbody only needed twenty seconds to change a small crowd of interested punters into a far larger, engaged gig audience. Gilbody’s songs represented thoughtfulness, diversity and arduous ability. His voice, capable of beat-boxing, soft reflective qualities and soaring high notes, filled the Queen’s Hall, whilst the diversity of songs allowed Gilbody to show the copious amount of skill he has with a guitar. Expect big things from this clever, talented act.

Credit has to given to The Electric String Orchestra, whose collaboration changed the feeling of Stanley Odd’s already complex sound. Great skill was evident from the ease with which they kept a tight string section ebbing and flowing with the punchy rhythms occurring beside them. The dimension of the strings never overpowered the band nor was it insignificant.

Musicality and skill was shown across the stage, combining good musicians into a tight ensemble that created something special. The musical variety was represented in the age range of the crowd: everyone could enjoy the punchy, politically- and socially-charged lyrics of Solareye.

The Queen’s Hall crowd were engaged, active and responded to the energy and passion of the band, whose combination of tight rhythm alongside soaring vocals and clever lyrics portrayed that energy and passion perfectly. Stanley Odd were recently shortlisted for the Scottish Album of the Year Award for their most recent album Reject. You can see why.