Whilst perusing through literally thousands of acts performing during The Edinburgh Festival I stumbled across Kenny Young and the Eggplants. Three nights in Edinburgh were to be their only UK gigs in 2023.
After listening to a few tracks online my interest was peaked and so I purchased a ticket and headed towards the Ukrainian Community Centre on Royal Terrace for the first of the band’s three shows. The bar was open and reasonably priced (not the usual inflated Festival prices) so I was happy enough and it boded well for show ahead.
The venue was tiny and I mean Lilliputian – probably facilitating 100 attendees at most. At 7pm Kenny and his Eggplants (Gil and Ed) made their way on stage. They proceeded to entertain the (can I say ‘crowd’ for such a tiny congregation?) with a set-list that would bring a smile to the face of a lamp post.
I couldn’t help but grin and let out an occasional chuckle throughout this pun laden lyrical journey, distantly reminiscent of 90’s South London band Carter USM, albeit with a completely different predominantly acoustic style.
Subjects ranged from 6 foot squirrels and tiny microbiologists to discovering the face of Elvis in a slice of pizza.
Mid-set the band played their signature tune the ‘Savage Eggplant’, tonight on a table tennis set; this is very hard to describe.. you know when people say ‘you had to be there’ right? That pretty much applies here.
All too soon it was 8pm and their slot was over. The band decided however to continue playing until asked to vacate the stage and went on to take requests from the audience including fan-favourites and a memorable cover of a song by Patti Smith.
In conclusion, this was an uplifting and unusual performance, the perfect tonic to years of listening to The Smiths, Radiohead and Leonard Cohen. A band at their best playing live.
Version 1.0 likely to be completely re-written and re-edited as usual in the near future.
Thank you for reading.
*Set-list and more to follow.
**Further information can be found @ the band’s official website: https://kennyyoungandtheeggplants.com