Blasting onto the scene over the past few years, the band is comprised Pablo Lafuente, Ewan Baird and BBC Young Traditional Musician of the year 2020 Ali Levack, whose forward thinking Scottish traditional music has set them apart since their formation in 2017.
With tunes built around Ali Levack’s distinctive whistle and piping, paired with Ewan Baird’s skilled bodhran playing and Pablo Lafuente’s nuanced guitar, electric guitar and production, the trio manage to naturally bring together an array of musical aspects. Throw in instrumental virtuosity, blistering drive, infectious rhythm and a delicate sensitivity and you have Project Smok’s thirst-quenching sound.
Known for their ability to effortlessly blend trad music with contemporary new-age pop influences, Project Smok are at their most comfortable pushing boundaries, making listeners stop and re-evaluate their musical expectations. They do away with any perceived limits of genre from the first note.
The close-knit group meld naturally between the innovative, explosive and emotive, drawing outside inspiration from indie pop acts like The 1975, LANY and Bon Iver, to more time-honoured, West Coast styles of playing.
They released their EP Esperanza in March 2021, after their debut album Bayview was shortlisted for ‘Best Album of the Year’ 2020, nominated for the ‘Belhaven Bursary for Innovation’ 2019 and nominated for ‘Best up and coming Artist’ 2018 at the MG ALBA Scots Trad Music Awards.
Written as a follow up to their 2017 EP ‘Horizons’, Bayview features an unforgettable collaboration with 2019 Scottish Album of the Year nominee Edwyn Collins.
The album was brought to life in Edwyn Collins’ famous Clashnarrow Studio in Helmsdale on Scotland’s north east coast, using a treasure trove of special analogue and vintage equipment to showcase their truly refreshing sound. It was premiered in spectacular fashion at Celtic Connections 2020 in Glasgow’s Old Fruitmarket to a sell-out crowd.
Bayview cemented their place as a young band at the forefront of the traditional music scene who have great intensions and crave innovation. They offer an unconventional, idiosyncratic, energetic synergism that defies expectation. It’s little wonder they have fast become a recognised and household name in the traditional music scene.
This gig is part of Edinburgh Tradfest 2022.
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