Gig Review | Ben Walker @ Sharkys Montrose | 24.11.23 |

If you have been paying close attention to the Scottish Music Scene over the last couple of years the name Ben Walker will have flashed across your socials for sure.

Walker is a talented singer songwriter from the Angus town of Montrose and last weekend he put on an intimate home town warm up show at Sharkys bar before he embarks on his biggest gigs to date, supporting Dundee indie legends The View on their Scottish tour this December.

The night showcased some of what Angus has to offer and it was nice to be there to witness it. There’s something magical about being part of grassroots music.

Liam Grieve

Liam started his set strong with his own rendition of The Waterboys classic Whole Of The Moon. The set was varied from dance classic Love Can Set You Free and ended his set with the Oasis anthem Don’t Look Back In Anger. Liam told us he was venturing out of a five year retirement and this was his first gig back. All things considered you’d never have known and the set was fun and engaging for the crowd for a good Friday night sing song. Lovely to witness his first gig back and I hope he continues to play shows and write more original stuff as he had previously with his old band the Kalaharis.

Katie Nicoll

Proud Kirriemuir lass Katie Nicoll is no stranger to the stage and has been working incredibly hard recently both recording and gigging having supported Callum Beattie, Rianne Downey and Luke La Volpe, it’s been a fantastic year for Katie. Most recently she’s been selected as the host for 2024 Bon Fest which she should be incredibly proud of.

Her set was filled with her original material, such us Regina George a song about karma, I just miss my dog – a song exploring the struggle with mental health and the importance of being positive to overcome the struggles and my favourite song that you can’t help but sing along to, easy peasy lemon squeezy – a track about learning to be happy following a relationship breakdown.

Check out her Spotify:

Cammy R

Cammy R (@Cammyrmusic)

Cammy is a very young singer songwriter from Arbroath who was a delight to watch. A confident boy with a lovely voice and a real creativity with his set. He plays guitar and cajon and showcased some of his original material 20 minutes to the show and his song Game Day, based loosely on a 12 bar blues and is about his love of playing rugby. Give him a follow on Instagram using the name above to see what he is up to.

Ben Walker

Ben kicked off his set with his latest single Lost with such powerful and emotive voice absolutely demanding the attention in the room, followed by Just a Boy – a song about the struggles of experiences of childhood bullying. We were lucky to get an exclusive listen to an unfinished track also. His songs are well crafted and there is a real sense of identity and creativity about his music.

Ben shared the story about how the tour with The View came to be: at a bowling alley with the View’s front man Kyle, when he slipped into conversation that they needed a band to support their upcoming tour and Ben said he jumped at the chance.

Walker reminds me of early Sam Fender… such passion, enthusiasm and zest for playing music.

Gifted with real imagination and drive for rhythm and music.

If you are a fan of Jake Bugg, Callum Beattie and The Hunna then Ben Walker should be added to your Spotify playlists. The Discovery Music team have reviewed his music over the past year and are all really behind him.

Ben finished off the set with some unplugged songs with keyboard player Callum. Ben covered Sam Fender’s Dying Light beautifully with so much passion I couldn’t look away. He followed this with Bruce Springsteen’s most famous hit Dancing in the Dark. These stripped back songs were so raw and heartfelt you could hear a pin drop. It’s evident throughout Ben’s writing he is influenced by music he has been exposed to.

This upcoming tour with The View is going to fast forward his musical career.

Ben is a talented guy who has a very clear identity and musical direction and seems to have a very supportive and gifted band behind him: Lewis Davie – guitar and vocals, Corrie Barrow – bass, Callum Hart – keys and Charlie Gilfillan on drums.

I’m excited to hear and see what comes next. Myself and the rest of the Discovery Music team wish him all the best with his upcoming tour.

About Bonnie Ross 43 Articles
I'm a musician who's always had a passion for discovering new music. I now write about it...