THEY had surprised fans with a new EP 48 hours earlier, so now was a good time to see rising Scottish stars Neon Waltz play their third show in Southampton.

Lead singer Jordan Shearer, drummer Darren Coghill, guitarists and brothers Kevin and Jamie Swanson, bassist Calvin Wilson, and keys player for this tour Callum Easter brought songs from new record Bring Me To Light as well as their captivating debut album Strange Hymns to Heartbreakers, 700 miles from their home in John O’Groats.

This intimate venue was a contrast to a week ago when the band played to more than 3,500 while supporting The Sherlocks in Manchester, but this close-knit six-piece can put on a show whatever the size of the stage.

Album favourites Sundial, Perfect Frame and Heavy Heartless, were belted out and there was one of the first live performances of new melancholic number Schoolhouse.

EP title track and latest single Bring Me To Light, a song that the early Stone Roses would have been proud of, heralds a timeless, spiritual optimism, something that Jordan says resonates with the band and their fans.

“The song is about doing what you believe in. At home, everyone usually keeps to the same sort of jobs and traditions, so for us to do our own thing and start a band surprised a lot of people, but we knew it was the right thing to do” he explained.

“Darren brought the song to practice when things were starting to take off for us. We write a lot of reflective music, so it’s good to have upbeat tunes like this one and Dreamers to get everyone bouncing.”

Everyone at home in Caithness is proud of the lad’s exploits as Kevin explained: “We’re from a small community who follow us like football fans. They’re always on our side.”

Neon Waltz’s debut album Strange Hymns and latest EP Bring Me To Light are out now. More at

Richard Derbyshire