Callel (3 stars)


Cabaret Voltaire, Edinburgh, Sat 31 Oct

We might be forgiven for thinking that Edinburgh’s Callel are emulating the glory styles of 70s rock here, with guitarist and vocalist Arron Cornall wearing what looks like a velvet cape and a ruffled shirt and at least two of his three bandmates being similarly over-dressed (one sports a luxurious moustache and tinted red glasses). It’s like John Lennon, Lindsey Buckingham and Gene Clark have formed a supergroup.

Not really, it’s just Calleloween: this mob launch their new album Body Discovery while a big audience of friends and local fans act out their dressing-up urges. Result: a good night out that dances over a stream of genres from days gone by, from power-pop to classic AOR. There’s a youthful energy to Callel’s sound, but the influence of parental record collections is apparent on songs like ‘Best Foot on the Ground’ and ‘Body Discovery’ itself. Yes, the sound of Fleetwood Mac and The Byrds is in there, but there’s also some Simon and Garfunkel in Cornall’s folk-toned voice and the kind of exuberant electronic pop you’d find on the soundtrack to a John Hughes film. Fun, retro and not overly serious, this band are still very good at what they do.

Callel, Michael Dodds and The Rapscallions

  • 3 stars

Edinburgh indie rock quartet who have been likened to Arcade Fire and Simon & Garfunkel.

The Holloways, Three Seeds in Paris and Callel

Cheeky indie urchins play their chirpy pop.


1. jon demon6 Nov 2009, 10:35am Report

not the most inspiring of interviews, i saw these boys callel a couple o times now this year including their album launch at cab vol last saturday and have to say that although its obvious some of their influences hark back to a by gone era, its the quality of their songs that really shine through. There's not many bands that have quality songs but these boys do. and i don't know if you got it but callel weren't over dressed, it was a fancy dress night.... lazy journalism is not what we expect from the list!

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6. Patero17 Nov 2009, 1:06pm Report

Quite simply the reviewer can not have been there! In my opinion Callel produced a stunning show in a fabulous Halloween atmosphere enjoyed by a fully enthusisatic and musically knowledgable crowd who were in great spirits throughout the gig.
These boys have a bright future and if this is indicative of the Scottish scene we should be very grateful.
The entrance was both imaginative and stylish and the choice of outfits perfect.
The quality of songs excellent and embracing with quality harmonic interludes and a spectacular end to the session which had the crowd in raptures.
Callel can and will get stunningly better and this is most definitely a band to keep tabs on.
Perhaps the list would like to review this review and learn some lessons and I agree the use of an old photograph is the height of journalistic laziness!

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10. jon demon20 Nov 2009, 9:21am Report

My original comment was purely based on the fact that this is a very mediocre review and I thought they probably deserved better than three 3 stars. To Vile and Morna, who you calling a 'fcker' and 'grumpy nitpickers' (nice), I mean do you work for the list?

At the end of they're a great band so if ignorance works for you Vile and you want to avoid the music just because some fans you don't even know are sticking up for a band they like, then do so. But if you're going to base your taste of music on these types of assumptions, you must have a pretty shoddy record collection.

love jon 'the grumpy nitpicker' demon

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