Tragic Selkirk singer-songwriter Scott Hutchison looks set to rack up posthumous hits at the double, or even treble.
Music fans saddened by the death of the Frightened Rabbit frontman last week have been showing their support for the surviving members of the band and paying their respects to Hutchison, 36, by downloading their back catalogue in quantities unheard of for years.
This week’s midweek album chart features two of the band’s five studio LPs and a live set too, and if sales continue at the same rate today and tomorrow, the band will notch up their first hits for over two years.
The group, formed in Selkirk in 2003 but based in Glasgow since the year after, last hit the album chart in 2016 with their fifth LP, Painting of a Panic Attack, reaching No 14.
Painting of a Panic Attack looks set to be a hit all over again once this week’s album chart is announced on Friday evening as it figures at No 58 in the midweek chart.
Two of the band’s other LPs also look set to join it, both potentially making the top 100 for the first time, The Midnight Organ Fight being at No 33 and Quietly Now!, a live set recorded in Glasgow in 2008 and first released the year after, sneaking in at No 98.
Frightened Rabbit was initially an alias for Hutchison, then based in Selkirk, after he started performing as a solo artist in 2003, that being the nickname his mum Marion gave him as a child because of his shyness.
The act became a duo, based in Glasgow, following the addition of his brother Grant, 33, as drummer the year after, and they expanded into a trio in 2005 after recruiting guitarist Billy Kennedy.
Keyboard-player Andy Monaghan joined up in 2008, and extra guitarist Gordon Skene was added to their line-up in 2009, though he left in 2014. Further guitarist Simon Liddell followed in 2013, making the band a five-piece outfit in their most recent incarnation.
Frightened Rabbit have released five albums starting with 2006’s Sing the Greys. It failed to chart, as – until tomorrow, at least – did its successor, 2008’s The Midnight Organ Fight, but the next three were all hits – The Winter of Mixed Drinks reaching No 84 in 2010, Pedestrian Verse No 9 in 2013 and Painting of a Panic Attack, their latest LP, No 14 in 2016.
State Hospital, the second of their three EPs – following 2011’s A Frightened Rabbit EP and preceding last September’s Recorded Songs, their latest release – charted too, making it to No 53 in 2012.
Hutchison, found dead at Port Edgar on the Firth of Forth last Thursday, also formed a side project with Monaghan and Liddell called Owl John in 2014, releasing one self-titled album, a No 99 hit, and another this year with brother Grant, Editors guitarist Justin Lockey and the latter’s brother James, bassist for Minor Victories.
Calling themselves Mastersystem, they put out a non-charting album titled Dance Music in April and went on a six-date tour finishing at Oslo in London on Tuesday, May 1.
That tour followed a five-date one with Frightened Rabbit in March to mark the 10th anniversary of the release of The Midnight Organ Fight.
Hutchison had spoken openly, and sung, about his struggles with depression for years, and on Monday Frightened Rabbit showed their support for this year’s Mental Health Awareness Week, running until Sunday, by tweeting: “Don’t ever think there isn’t someone out there who wants to listen to what you have to say.”