Musings on Scrum’s ‘Killing Time’

I’ve been a bit of an online fan of Scrum for some time now. Hearing them every now and then on Wyldwood radio, playlists, and looking them up on youtube, of course. However, being one of those annoying foreign fans, I didn’t manage to get my hands on any of their CDs until Castlefest when I bought Killing Time. In my defense, I also requested Pro Libertate for my birthday and converted my mother to the band so I think I’m making up for my slowness 😉

The title track is a pretty good sign of what is to come. Energetic rocky music with a clear folk influence, it’s certainly a good opener. If you manage to stay still once listening and, once you get to know it a bit, if you don’t sing along then you’re a stronger person than me! Most of the songs are in this vein although with a few notable exceptions.

The Scrum version of Caledona stands out as the first slower piece. The addition of a female voice, and for the final verse, works really well. The highlight of this piece, for me, has got to be the way that the bagpipes enter out of no-where and just add so much. Okay, I might have a thing for bagpipes.

Another cover (if once can call it that), Loch Lomond, is quite traditional in style but still has its own unique sound with some uplifting harmonies that give it strength while allowing it to be a relaxing calm piece. Under the Scotsman’s Kilt, however, is given a more rocky sound in the second half. For some reason, this rendition of this song reminds me of my late grandmother who I can picture in the place of one of the girls in the story so I, personally, enjoy this track!

Probably an appropriate ‘final song’ to focus on is one of the first tracks I heard from Scrum, ‘Going Home’. This fast paced piece is another bob and sing along one (maybe I just have a weakness for this?) and is really good fun. The lyrics aren’t overly complex but capture the idea of the tune so well.

With a combination of sentimental and lively songs, this album works as a balanced listening experience. The continued themes and genre links some dramatically different pieces together to make a holistic experience which is thoroughly enjoyable, and on many levels.

If you would like to find out more about Scrum then you can visit their website. You can purchase Killing Time direct from the band or, probably easier if you’re in the UK, via amazon

Apologies for this post being even more disjointed than normal… wrote it late at night and after hours of studying!


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