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Live review: The National @ Kelvingrove Bandstand Festival

A sea of cagoules welcomed The National to Kelvingrove Bandstand on August 7

The National didn’t allow the pouring rain of a typical Scottish summer night ruin the mood at the Bandstand Festival.

Built in 1924, the Kelvingrove Bandstand fell into disrepair after closing its doors in 1999.

It returned to its former glory and old-world charm after a restoration in 2014, making it the perfect venue for a band like The National.

As the crowds filed into the bandstand, This is The Kit performed a short set. The band’s lead Kate Stables, on vocals, guitar, and banjo, would later join The National to perform songs from their latest album, I Am Easy to Find.

When it was finally time for The National to take to the stage, the heavens truly opened. Considering the often sombre mood of their music, it could have been considered an appropriate accompaniment.

That is not to say the crowd or the band were in a dour mood, as the excitement built throughout the night with lead singer Matt Beringer frequently diving into the sea of plastic cagoules that was the audience.

He even managed to accrue one himself on a visit into the crowd.

Another highlight of the show was a surprise appearance from CHVRCHES’ Lauren Mayberry who joined Beringer in singing I Need My Girl.

In a touching tribute, the band and Mayberry performed a cover of Walking Backwards by Frightened Rabbit, whose founder and main songwriter Scott Hutchison passed away last year.

Despite the fact that fingers were starting to wrinkle in the torrential rain towards the night’s end, The National closed out the night with a crowd-led rendition of Vanderlyle Crybaby Geeks.

It was clear that the downpour couldn’t dampen the electric atmosphere of a terrific summer night.

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