APACHE DARLING – Mad Hatters – 19/08/2018

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A double hit – giggles served with with a complimentary side of pure magic man!

Now this is a story all about how my life got flipped-turned upside down and I’d like to take a minute just sit right there, I’ll tell you how I found a new favourite band completely by accident. And of course, revel in the idea of you being slowly driven mad over the next few days because you can’t stop humming that fucking Fresh Prince theme. I like to treat my readers well.

A bit of context: I’m injured and in pain as a result. A lot of pain. So being a responsible, high functioning, grade A, “10/10 would recommend to a friend adult,” I’ve been drinking. I’ve become a transient bar-hopper, desperately seeking my next pint as I find myself barred from the fifth pub this evening. Last night that bar was Mad Hatters. A sexy little number, tucked away where tourists can’t be arsed to wander, painted dark and slathered in fairy lights. There were even candles last night. REAL candles, with a flame and everything. Real fire in a room full of drunk potential arsonists. I think Madhatters is beginning to trust us. I also think that trust is misplaced.

Too busy laughing to take some photos – sozzerlollies – here’s their tour poster.

I got myself comfy (as comfy as one can on a wooden kiddy stool when they have an arse the size of mine – half an inch to the left and that ‘chair’ would have been swallowed whole) pint in hand and found myself pleasantly surprised to have caught the final leg of the Teuchters Comedy Club  – Arse End of Nowhere tour. Five stand up comedians and a host, almost two hours of comedy for free. Even if it’s shit you can’t lose, right? Turns out, I couldn’t lose. Regrettably I’d sunk a few too many Mickey Finn’s than I should have and forgot to take notes or pictures (alcohol abuse can have its drawbacks), yet I soldier on. Having been to Teuchters before, I noticed a lot of the comedians recycling their jokes. Now of course, this is understandable and generally how stand up works, but knowing the punchlines the second you hear the opening line can put a dampener on your experience. I have no problem with hearing jokes repeated at different shows, as long as that isn’t the basis for the whole set. Inverness is a small town and you do a lot of shows, throw me some variety! I can confirm that Jenny Johnson was fantastic as always, however. A couple of jokes of hers I’d heard before, but she threw in just enough new material to keep me cackling like the dying hyena I am. She looks like she owns the stage – pacing around and lunging like it’s leg day whilst displaying the energy levels of an electric hamster in a bubble bath. She is unafraid to take up space in a profession dominated by and associated with men. She rattles off period jokes, soaking in the unspoken camaraderie between the women in the audience whilst simultaneously reveling in watching the ‘ladsladslads’ squirm. She’s a breath of fresh air in my highly fucking professional opinion.

Kieran Lochore headlined the show in the most delightful way possible – passionately singing Beatles medleys in German and giving Metallica’s Enter Sandman a gleefully perky rejig. I’ve seen Kieran perform with Teuchters before, but this was the first time I’d seen him with a guitar and a suitcase full of musical craic. His set was absolutely headline worthy and TheNettle.scot wishes they hadn’t sent such a shite reviewer to cover it. Sorry guys, my bad. Pictures next time.

Making up for the two pound sixty glass of coke.


I was fully prepared to go home after the comedy due to both exhaustion and the arrival of some unsavoury characters. They probably didn’t do anything, but they looked unsavoury to me. You can’t tell me who to like, mum. I’m an adult now and- sorry, I got carried away. I’d have gone home instantly if an unexpectedly captivating band hadn’t just swaggered to the stage, but here Apache Darling were, in all their bold and bolshy glory. I was so in.

The singer Stephanie was confident, robust and extremely fucking talented. Despite the mic not picking up certain pitches correctly, her voice was powerful enough to carry over to the audience unaided. Her passion for the lyrics was clear to see, and she delivered each line with pure emotion. I knew I was hooked. The genre flitted between pop punk, electronic and folk, and was right up my street. They reminded me of Pvris with less screaming; more upbeat and certainly less depressed. The dress code seemed to be black and white (except for the keyboard traitor player), which gave me first album (White Noise for those who are interested) Pvris vibes. Basically, I’ve seen the Scottish Pvris. That might not sound like a compliment, but it fucking is. Go listen, now.


Anyway, the band was comprised of two women and two men, all four dripping with charisma seemingly without effort. I’d hate these people if I didn’t bloody love them. This was Apache Darling’s first tour, which was announced as they asked the audience for their patience while they played one of their songs live for the first time in two years. They didn’t need to add that preface it turned out, as the band pulled off the performance flawlessly. Embarrassingly for me, I chose this moment for a cigarette break, getting caught downstairs by the aforementioned unsavoury characters and talked at for fifteen minutes. This led me to miss most of the rest of the set. I will never forgive those bastards.

I eventually got rid of the unsavouries and managed to catch the band’s last song; Ghost. An emotional tune that reminded me of Paramore but when they were good. Stefanie’s voice was something Hayley-esque, but with much more depth and a generous helping of vibrato. Some lovely harmonies and the realisation that the guitarist was playing a five string later and the band try to leave the stage. That was not to be, as the crowd characteristically demanded “wan mair choon”, to which Mr Keyboard (Andrew Black) responded “I hadn’t even thought about this, we literally don’t have any more songs”. They literally didn’t. After a chat amongst themselves, they settled on playing their new track, Bubblegum, for a second time. I’d missed the first, so this filled me with childlike delight. The song started off with what I wrote was ‘kinda sexy rap”, eventually transitioning into an emotive chorus about uncommunicative relationships. Stephanie whips a tambourine out, the drunk solo dancefloor inhabitant ruins my totally fucking professional photos of the band for the fiftieth time, and I resign myself to a new reality, where a band from Glasgow stole my heart on their first tour.


APACHE DARLING live at Hootananny Inverness, electro funking the fuck out of a Sunday night

Posted by TheNettle.scot on Sunday, 19 August 2018

Now, can anybody remember the mystery verse of the Fresh Prince of Bel-Air?

Here’s a robot repeating all that as he takes time out from dealing with the unruly robot peasants in robot Downton Abbey.

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1 Reply to “APACHE DARLING – Mad Hatters – 19/08/2018”

  1. The solo dancefloor inhabitant that ruins your totally fucking professional photos of the band for the fiftieth time was me 🙂 lol. The thing is I wasn’t even drunk – I don’t even drink! This was my second time seeing this awesome band! I was dancing away not giving a shit what people were thinking! Nice review though! – I’m glad you liked the band as much as me! I think you should of done some dance moves on the dancefloor than try to take pictures for the fiftieth time. Lol 🙂

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