There are only so many guitar bands lamenting about their emotions in indecipherable metaphor I can muster up the energy to listen to and tell you about.
Therefore, in the interests of sanity, I decided to give both of us a bit of respite by getting out of the city and into the fantastical setting of THE ENCHANTED FOREST, an annual tourist attraction in Pitlochry which sees Faskally Wood transformed into a stunning sensory feast of light and sound for a fortnight.
This year’s theme has the suitably poetic title of Force of Nature, with your after-dark ticket giving you the opportunity to walk around the still waters of Loch Dunmore and take in the magic concocted by musician Ronnie McConnell and lighting designer Simon Wilkinson.
All of the speakers are camouflaged from view, so the squalls, murmurs and shrills that emanate from the undergrowth and echo around trees illuminated in pinks and oranges give the place an otherworldly, Pandora feel.
The circuit has three ‘set-pieces’ which demand your full attention for a good 10 minutes; the first has a firefly twinkling effect with bird calls and animal squawks; in the second, naked flames shoot up from five pods in time to Tibetan beats; and for the grand finale there are booming drum thuds and a majestic Disney-esque score created by Philip Glass as water fountains sprout out of the loch in choreographed unison.
A lot of the ambient, experimental songs that find their way into The Pop Cop inbox struggle to make any lasting impression on me, but The Enchanted Forest proves that music always sounds better when given a bit of context.
The Enchanted Forest runs until November 7. Book tickets here.
All photos © The Pop Cop
London Chamber Orchestra (Philip Glass) – Façades