Reviews

Aidan Moffat and RM Hubbert
Here Lies The Body

(Rock Action)

7/10

For the last 20 years, Aidan Moffat has made an art form of cajoling emotion. Whether it’s creating a Highland sense of comfort, an inebriated menace or scything stories with caustic wit, his spoken word delivery has always found a perfect balance between the melodic and melancholic – and it’s no different on ‘Here Lies the Body’.

As always, the guitar and voice are the heart of the record with Moffat’s grizzled words artfully interlacing revealing monologues, deadpan deliveries and dramatic soliloquies with a gruff ease around the delicate, spidery guitar work of RM Hubbert.

On the tender woodwind of ‘Quantam Theory Love Song’, Moffat might posit sweet thoughts like “let’s stare at the stars and see what we want to see” but on ‘Keening for a Dead Love’, his voice hangs heavy over a slow, sombre procession of strings and piano. And while his low burr reverberates through the theatrical campfire tale of ‘Wolves of the Wood’, it’s ‘Mz. Locum’ that has Moffat at his funny and forlorn best as he nails heart-on-sleeve unrequitedness (“without her I live, but less so”) with a nod and a wink (“she’s a bombshell in leggings / A goddess in jeggings / But she’s best when they’re all on the floor”).

The result is a set of songs that come to life with a storied, bright-eyed wisdom, but no single track captures the Moffat dichotomy quite like ‘Party On’. Set against the backdrop of a samba carnival drum line, you’d think he’s switched Falkirk for Fortaleza. He hasn’t, but it’s unexpected moments like this that continue to make his work a national treasure.

Support Loud And Quiet from £4 per month and we'll post you our next 9 magazines

As all of us are constantly reminded, it’s getting harder for independent publishers to stay in business, which applies to Loud And Quiet more now than ever, 14 years after we first started printing a magazine that we’ve always given away for free.

Having thought about the best way to support the costs of what we do (the printing and server fees, the podcast and video production costs etc.) we’d like to ask our readers who really enjoy what we do to subscribe to our next 9 issues over the next 12 months. The cheapest we can afford to do this for is a recurring payment of £4 per month for UK subscribers. If you really start to hate it you can cancel at any time. The same goes for European subscriptions (£7 per month) and the rest of the world (£9 per month).

It’s not just a donation – you’ll receive a physical copy of our magazine through your door, and some extra perks detailed on our subscribe page. Digital subscriptions are available worldwide for £15 per year. We hope you consider this a good deal and the best way to keep Loud And Quiet in your life without its content, independence or existence suffering.