Have Mercy Las Vegas
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Have Mercy Las Vegas

Glasgow, Scotland, United Kingdom | Established. Jan 01, 2010 | SELF

Glasgow, Scotland, United Kingdom | SELF
Established on Jan, 2010
Band Folk Blues

Calendar

This band hasn't logged any future gigs

Oct
17
Have Mercy Las Vegas @ Hootananny

Inverness, Scotland, United Kingdom

Inverness, Scotland, United Kingdom

Oct
16
Have Mercy Las Vegas @ Balmaha's Braw Weekend

Scotland, United Kingdom

Scotland, United Kingdom

Oct
15
Have Mercy Las Vegas @ Loopallu

Ullapool, Scotland, United Kingdom

Ullapool, Scotland, United Kingdom

Music

Press


With a joyous, rambunctious energy, Have Mercy Las Vegas stormed long sequences of this gig, with several in the crowd breaking into spontaneous do-si-does round King Tut’s sticky floor.

Have Mercy Las Vegas - King Tut’s, Glasgow

* * * *

Headlining this King Tut’s New Year’s Revolution showcase, the unsigned folk sextet from Loch Lomond – paying homage to Appalachian music and slide blues while remaining essentially true to their Scots roots – are poised to release their debut album shortly.

And on this evidence, it should be a belter.

Pappy was a sprightly opener, and the exuberant Barn Stomp is a touchstone for their sound with recently acquired fiddler Andrew Napier unshowily to the fore.

There is a jaded cynicism about relationships that cuts through even the more straightforward ballads such as aching lament That’s Life or the twinkly Plastic Promises, with Trotter and Crispin McAlpine harmonising beautifully.

Led by the latter’s ukulele, Snakes and Horses romped impressively through a succession of gear changes, though that was as nothing compared to the galloping Suffering Love, featuring some frenetic fretwork from McAlpine and fellow guitarist Stephen Scott.

Urged for an encore, they threatened a Flight of the Conchords cover but instead opted for the marginally less ridiculous Cotton-Eyed Joe, a nod to 1990s floor-fillers from a band that doesn’t take itself too seriously. - Scotsman


ENERGETIC roots-drive six-piece Have Mercy Las Vegas have strong local connections and are no strangers to the stage at Buchanan Memorial Hall…and their debut album, That’s Life, has had us dancing round G63 HQ like crazy things.
The band’s fusion of folk, blues and some celtic flair with a nod to it’s Scottish roots has been turning heads since breaking onto the live scene in 2011.
We loved the band’s debut EP and follow-up single Pappy but it’s on the live stage that HMLV stands out, with a mesmerising set of original material – from shit-kickin’ hoe downs to harmonious laments.
That's Life
That’s Life
Catch them live if you can and visit the band’s website here.
Check out the Have Mercy Las Vegas album on iTunes by clicking the album cover on the right…and listen to one of our favourites from the new album…. - G63.scot


This is the debut release from Scottish folk band Have Mercy Las Vegas. A strange name for a band that is rooted so much in the Celtic and folk traditions but I’m sure there is a story to tell around this choice. Recorded, mixed and produced by Matt Harvey at Maybank Studios in Glasgow and mastered by Tim Debney of Fluid Mastering (Mumford and Sons and Laura Marling), the eleven songs are played with a great energy and enthusiasm. With banjo, mandolin, harmonium, guitar, glockenspiel, ukulele combining into a heady mix, the sense of being swept along on a wave of energy is infectious.

Have Mercy Las Vegas are a six-piece troupe that has been part of the Scottish music scene since 2011. Their live performances have been earning them many new fans and friends with praise for their full-on approach and celebratory sound. Two years in the making, this debut has benefitted from their live circuit activities as the playing and the harmonies are tight and textured.

Barn Stomp does exactly what it says on the tin while Pappy, Bonnie & Clyde and Mind’s Made Up see the album really take off in a spirited crescendo of musical mayhem. Uke Ballad, Drinking Heavily and the title track are gentle acoustic songs that break the frenetic pace of the playing and give some space in the arrangements. An enjoyable debut that promises much for the future. - Lonesome Highway


It’s an infrequent occurrence, but when a previously unheard-of band comes to my attention with an iridescent, unique sound it’s definitely ‘sit up and take notice’ time. As I’ve said so often, new is easy, Have Mercy Las Vegas album coverdifferent is difficult. Without doubt, the spectacularly named Have Mercy Las Vegas and their album ‘That’s Life’ hit ‘different’ squarely between the eyes. There’s a refreshing diversity of styles and influences threading through this album. To set your expectations, think deep Scottish roots, razor sharp Americana, trad and contemporary Appalachia embellished with touches of folk and country blues – do that and you’re halfway there. To complete the picture, add blisteringly tight musicianship and perfectly interlaced harmonies.

Whether running at full-tilt or taking time with slices of life, ‘That’s Life’ has a completeness to its multi-influenced music, clearly identifying its multiple heritage and taking the blend into distinctive places. Proceedings kick off with the title track ‘That’s Life’, a ‘heartache ballad’ if there ever was one and a fine example of their layered influence and inheritance, which leads into ‘Carlisle’ an Americana-inspired piece of balladic-folk, before the foot-stomper ‘Pappy’ ups the tempo. From there ‘Barn Stomp’ encourages an audience to ‘rip up the boards’ with its step-inducing energy, ‘Bonnie and Clyde’ builds a racing narrative ahead of a deeply-felt, ‘scruff of the neck’ sadness driven through ‘Drinking Heavily’ and the harmony rich ‘Minds Made Up’.

To call this Americana is not enough, to call it folk misses the mark, let’s just call it damn fine music and leave it at that. The ‘live’ show must be exhausting physically and emotionally … can’t wait. - Folk Words


Next was a couple of steps through to the Northern Roots Stage and Have Mercy Las Vegas. A new name to me but one full of fun, vigour and close harmonies. This was one pacy hillbilly bluegrass hoedown and even relatively slower numbers such as ‘That’s Life’ were full of boundless enthusiasm. Impressed? Yes. Add me to your fan list. - Inverness Gigs


THEY may take their name from Sin City, but Dumbartonshire’s Have Mercy Las Vegas are more familiar with the Highlands than they are with Nevada.

"Brew at the Bog last year was the first time we went up and since then it’s been excellent for us," banjo and mandolin player Stephen Scott said.

"I think our kind of music, with a sort of folky element to it, lends itself really well to festivals like Belladrum and HebCelt and Loopallu, although there’s plenty of other music at all of these. It’s good to get a decent mix."

The band, who return to Hootananny in Inverness this weekend, have been described by well known Scottish DJ Jim Gellatly as "an ideal festival band with stacks of energy".

Festival programmers seem to agree and the six piece have chalked up 14 festivals since playing Celtic Connections in January, including slots at Belladrum and a return to Brew at the Bog.

"We’ve had a very different summer, but it’s been great going down to all these festivals, meeting new people and watching new bands," Scott said.

"HebCelt was tremendous, especially with the community feel to it, and it was the main stage that we played on, which was probably one of the biggest stages we’ve played. Before it we put our CD in the merch tent and they asked if we could come and sign it after. We thought maybe a couple of people would buy it, but there was a queue of people outside waiting for us to sign the CD, which was absolutely incredible.

"Belladrum was special too because we had BBC Alba filming us, and we were on the same show as Hayseed Dixie, who we’re big fans of, and also the likes of the Manic Street Preachers and Prides. A brilliant, brilliant experience. But there’s not been one festival that we’ve not enjoyed."

While frontman and songwriter Crispin McAlpine drew on his love of Americana for the sound of Have Mercy Las Vegas, the band acknowledge that recruiting Scott helped bring a folkier element to the group.

"We didn’t set out to be a folk band or bluegrass band or any type of band at all," Scott said.

"All these influences that we have just come together in a big pot. I don’t think there is a specific term for what we do. We just make music and somebody else will say we’re bluegrass or somebody else will say that we’re country. That’s fine. Just as long as they like it, that’s the main thing."

The band, which also comprises vocalist Eilidh Trotter, bass player Marc McLean, drummer Phil Plunkett and fiddler Andrew Napier, have already released one album, That’s Life, and more material is being assembled for a follow up.

"Whether it’s a new album or a new EP, we’ve not really discussed too much. We’ve got a lot of new songs coming through," Scott revealed.

However, no one should expect those songs to be in the glitzy showbiz style of the city that shares their name.

"The only time it’s happened was in Glasgow, where someone came in expecting a Liza Minnelli tribute or something like that, which was quite fun," Scott laughed.

"The only thing it really prompts people to do is ask where the name came from. There are a lot of bands that have generic names and if you try and find them on the internet, you find another dozen.

"The name actually came back from something a friend said on a trip our singer did to Las Vegas about five years ago. We absolutely love it. It’s certainly very unique. It doesn’t reflect what we do, but it doesn’t really matter, does it?"

• Have Mercy Las Vegas, together with songwriter Alan Frew, are at Hootananny’s Ceilidh Bar, Church Street, Inverness, on Saturday 17th October. - Inverness Courier


Discography

HMLV - EP 2012

That's Life - Album 2015

Photos

Bio

"When a previously unheard-of band comes to my attention with an iridescent, unique sound it’s definitely sit up and take notice time"

To set your expectations, Think deep Scottish roots, razor sharp Americana, trad and contemporary Appalachia embellished with touches of folk and country blues – do that and you’re halfway there. To complete the picture, add blisteringly tight musicianship and perfectly interlaced harmonies. The reviews of the debut album have been well received, but it's the frenetic and passionate live shows that set these guys apart from the rest. The upbeat numbers will have you stomping your feet, but even in the slower, more melodic songs the band has an energy about them that's hard not to get drawn in by.

Have Mercy Las Vegas have built a faithful following and a solid reputation as one of the most talked about acts on the Scottish Festival circuit. Throughout 2015 HMLV stormed through a series of 14 Festivals, including main stage performances at Hebridean Celtic Festival, Kelburn Garden Party and Brew at the Bog. Further highlights included a highly commended performance at Celtic Connections and a televised set at Belladrum Tartan heart broadcast on BBC Alba.

Television wasn't limited to Belladrum, the band twice appeared on STV Glasgow flagship program Riverside and opened the 2014 series Rapal again on BBC Alba, with 4 more appearances on the show. A further milestone for the band was the breakthrough to national radio. Locally, they were well received on Radio Clyde, Amazing Radio and numerous other Scottish programmes, however AirPlay on Dermot O'Learys show on BBC Radio 2 brought their music to a whole new audience.

The foundation of the successes in 2015 was built on the late 2014 release of the debut album "That's Life". 2 years in the making, the record was released to excellent reviews and a sold out album launch barn dance.

After an exciting period touring the album the band are always encouraged by continuously raising the bar year on year and are already writing new music in preparation for what the future brings. 





Band Members