After a few expectation-filled weeks, the much heralded Mumford and Sons gig took place last night.
Punters had started queueing outside the Whiteness and Weisdale hall from around 6.30pm and after the doors opened an hour later the hall filled with excitable music lovers, young and old.
There was a good natured buzz about the place as the crowd waited as patiently as they could for the show to begin.
Support act Rachel Sermanni soon arrived on stage to cheers and whistles from the audience, and did well to play over the by now boisterous crowd.
Starting her set with her track Bones, her performance was a beautiful beginning to the night’s music, though her soft and melodic voice may have been better suited to a quieter setting, the guitar at times lost in the din of the hall.
Her vocals were clear and strong, however, and her set, including the upbeat Burger Van Song, got a good response.
The wait between her performance and the main act seemed an age and had an interesting effect on the eager crowd, who were so impatient they gave the band’s roadie, setting up the instruments on stage, a good cheer.
To tumultuous applause, whistles, cheers and foot stomping the four strong Brit-winning band finally appeared, launching almost directly into their first track.
After a second more subdued tune, lead singer Marcus Mumford spoke to the audience, telling us the band were very pleased to be in Shetland and that they had “heard a lot about you from the shipping forecast [sic]”.
In their hour-long set, the band played various tracks from their multi-platinum selling album Sigh No More, including Roll Away Your Stone and Little Lion Man, which the crowd enthusiastically sang along to.
They also “experimented” with a few previously unheard tracks, which also went down well.
Throughout their set the good humoured band seemed genuinely happy to be playing such a small venue, and it was quite heartening to see such a commercially successful band performing their music so passionately.
Before long though it was all over, but not before Marcus Mumford asked the crowd whether the band could come back, to which he got a massive roar of appreciation.
Comments from audience members included, “they sound as good here as they did at T in the Park” and more questionably, “They sound like Runrig … In a good way!”
Organiser Davie Gardner of Atlantic Edge Music services said the night had been a huge success.
He said: “I was very, very, happy with the way it went off completely trouble free, it was good to see so many young folk singing along to ‘real’ songs in a world of so much contrived music.”
Asked whether the band had also enjoyed themselves, he said: “Very much so, they were knackered at the end of it but they really enjoyed the response from the crowd. They were completely enamoured with the place and folk.”