Americana Nights

Flagstaff returns to the Fringe this year with a rusty, broken bottle blues feel that takes you down south and out west. The band adheres to their bluegrass roots whilst diversifying their setlist to provide a night of country-western, honky-tonk and southern boogie.

Flagstaff are worth a watch

Flagstaff wasted little time on introductions and jumped straight into a cover of Dylan’s You Ain’t Going Nowhere. Their liberal use of slide neck guitar, accordion and harmonica demonstrates clear influences from Neil Young, Jeff Healey and Ryan Adams. The evening was split into two distinctive halves, with the first driven by uptempo blues, the second characterised by softer acoustic numbers.

While the venue, Henry’s Cellar Bar, feels as American as they come, decorated with numerous state driver’s plates, bald-eagle memorabilia and of course the old stars ‘n’ stripes, it is cramped and lacks seating. On top of feeling like a sauna, viewing the band is made difficult thanks to a large pillar obstructing the stage. But it would be unfair to blame Flagstaff for the venue’s shortcomings.

If Flagstaff have a problem it would be their lack of consistent professionalism, the weak link in the act which slowed down their performance. The band took a fifteen-minute break between their faster and softer tracks as one does when switching the tempo, but invariably became patchier as the night grew on. This, however, was but a minor shortcoming of an otherwise pleasant experience. There is no doubt Flagstaff are worth a watch, though they were a little short on what they delivered.

Reviews by Stuart Mckenzie

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The Blurb

After sold out shows in 2013 and 2014, Edinburgh band Flagstaff are back with another night of country, roots and Southern rock. You'll hear our take on classic and contemporary Americana songs by the Byrds, Steve Earle, Little Feat, Gram Parsons, Old Crow Medicine Show, Ryan Adams, Creedence and the Jayhawks. The songs cover the whole Americana storytelling canvas – covering love, loss, revenge, trucks and Cadillacs. Come on down to the honky tonk, grab a cold one and get yourself a little bit of Americana.