On Tuesday 18th October The Colchester Arts Centre welcomed the critically acclaimed guitarist Dave Arcari. He entered the stage with just his guitar in hand, but when he started to play it became clear that he had brought much more than that. Arcari had brought a sound that wrapped blues, country and rock into an intense wail of energy. Steven Flavell reports.
When the Scottish steel guitar player entered the stage I didn’t quite know what to expect. He seemed to possess a real presence that seemed almost unearthly. His thick beard glinted with silver and his eyes flashed with excitement, and then he started to play… He scrunched his face into the glare of a madman that had stumbled upon a secret. When Arcari played Devil’s Left Hand it all became clear, the lyrics revealed the secret that his expression alluded to; “the devil’s left hand reached across the sticks, and I drank all his whiskey and learnt some of his tricks.”
His performance of Parcel Of Rogues was mesmerising and strangely disorientating. Like a mischievous dancer of deliverance Arcari galloped across the stage, glaring out of focus but very much in tune. He swung his beard away from his body to break free but it clung to him like his guitar.
During Got Me Electric Arcari strummed a bassy percussion into his guitar that he saluted with a roll back of his eyes and the raspy twang of his voice. He stomped his feet as he gazed out with glee, wrapping his rich scotch accent around the lyrics, strangling them with rugged emotion. As I watched him I wondered if this was a madman or a genius, but perhaps he is both…
This article was originally posted by me on the Colchester Circle blog.