Monster second album for Kelso’s Carly

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KELSO music tutor Carly Blain is set to release her latest album with the Monster Ceilidh Band.

The fiddler is joined by Amy Thatcher on accordion, Kieran Szifris on mandocello and Dave De La Haye on bass for their second record, Mechanical Monster, which is on sale from April 11.

The group of musicians got together while studying at Newcastle University and set up monthly ceilidhs in the student union.

Carly said: “The first album was fun to record and was nominated for the album of the year at the Spiral Earth Award 2010. It has sold very well and led us on to amazing gigs.

“Last year we performed at 20 UK festivals, and had a super tour of Russia, playing at Moscow’s biggest metal club Toshka, Moscow International House of Music and St Petersburg’s huge Glav Club. The sleeper train from Moscow to St Petersburg was quite an experience!

“The peak of the year was, however, the 8,000 mud-soaked punters screaming ‘Monster!’ during our headlining performance at the Rainforest World Music Festival, in Borneo, Malaysia.

“I loved the hot weather, but my fiddle tuning did not.”

The band begin a UK tour this month to support Mechanical Monster, playing Edinburgh’s Bongo Club on Thursday, March 24.

“It is a double album, featuring a full acoustic album of our new sets,” said Carly.

“Most of the tracks are composed and arranged by myself and the rest of the band.

“We are looking into performing in the Borders, as it would be nice for all my pupils who I teach in Kelso to see me perform with the Monster Ceilidh Band.”

The album has received positive reviews from a series of websites and festivals, and fellow artists.

Aidan O’Rourke of award-winning folk group Lau said: “An album of twists and turns and infectious charm, anarchic ceilidh for a riotous generation”. Another reviewer commented: “Grab your dancing shoes (and glowsticks) and look out for the next monster ceilidh near you.”