Hogmanay With Friends


Party in the capital with Twin Atlantic, Twilight Sad, Hot Dub Time Machine and Young Fathers.


So many people visit this city; the views, the history and the simple fact it is the capital city of Scotland. Everywhere you walk it’s historic in some way. Every street has multiple alleyways or as they call it in Edinburgh; a close, diverting left and right from the streets joining onto other streets. The reason that I was visiting this wonderful city? Hogmanay.

In Scotland, we call New Year’s Eve - Hogmanay and always have, just to be different I think. No one parties like the Scots especially at Hogmanay. Up and down the country events are put on to celebrate the New Year; House Parties, Street Parties, Field Parties, Ceilidhs and all sorts. Edinburgh Street party is the biggest of them all, 75,000 people descend on this ticket only event which has a host of events held within the area. I was here to photograph the music. Playing this year on various stages around the party were; Lily Allen, Bjorn Again and SoulIISoul in the Concert In The Gardens. Young FathersThe Twilight Sad and Twin Atlantic performed at the Waverley Stage, with Eddie Reader, Breabach and Ross Ainslie & Jarlath Henderson Band on the Scottish Stage. Hot Dub Time Machine, Australian DJ, was also performing at the event with the show being projected on big screens across the street party.

I was here to capture the Waverley stage for A Music Blog Yea?!, a Canadian music blog that I photograph for. I was also here to photograph my favourite band of all time, Twin Atlantic, this moment was to be the best moment of my life. Arriving at 1pm in the afternoon, it gave me the opportunity to be the tourist and take a walk about the city before getting into work mode. Here a few shots that I took on this walk:


First up to perform was Mercury prize winning and local Edinburgh band Young Fathers. In 2014 the band achieved International recognition by winning the coveted Mercury Prize with their third studio album Dead. They were a fantastic band to shoot however they did enjoy a dimly lit stage which made it harder to capture the images I wanted.


Following Young Fathers on the Waverley Stage were Glasgow based band The Twilight Sad. They have recently released their fourth studio album Nobody Wants To Be Here and Nobody Wants To Leave,to widespread critical acclaim. Again they preferred to have a dimly lit stage, however I aimed to create a better composition in my shots since I wasn’t able to use the light to my advantage.


The Craziest Party You Will Ever See. That is all I can say about this guys set. The crowd were going crazy throughout the night as he performed 9pm-1am and his set broadcasting on screens across the city. 75,000 people dancing on the streets is what it’s all about.


Headlining the Waverley Stage was my favourite band of all time Twin Atlantic. This was the 13th time seeing them, they have came along way from the 48 people at the Tolbooth in Stirling that I was with when I first seen them perform. In 2014 they released their second studio album Great Divide which was in the top 10 albums in the UK, played at multiple music festivals across Europe, played stadiums with Kings of Leon, sold out two nights at the Barrowlands in 30 minutes and travelled across America playing their biggest headline shows to date. A big year for the four-piece Glaswegians with 2015 set to be even bigger as they embark on their biggest UK headline tour to date with a headline slot at The Hydro, Glasgow. If you ever need to see one of the greatest frontmen out at the moment, check out Sam Mctrusty. Even his name is legendary.

I don't know how to finish this fairytale. I have only been photographing concerts for 3 months with this being my 7th... Words cannot describe this night. Hopefully I'll have plenty more in the future.

Thanks for reading.

Ryan JohnstonComment