Good evening Inverness...

Idlewild kicked off their first UK tour in almost 18 months at INVERNESS BLUE last night (March 6), with a 15-song set that included five tracks from their new album, ‘THE REMOTE PART’.

Among the new songs played was forthcoming single, ‘You Held The World In Your Arms’, released on April 15 through Parlophone, ‘American English’, ‘Stay The Same’, ‘Century Century’ and ‘I Found That Essence Rare’.

Speaking to NME.COM today in Glasgow, where the band play the city’s Art School tonight, singer Roddy Woomble said it felt great to be back onstage.

“We haven’t played live for six months, which doesn’t sound like a lot, but when you’ve spent four years playing solidly, six months feels like an age. It was messy and fun! It was good to start in Inverness. It’s the first time we’ve played this year, first time we’ve played the new songs, and it felt like a good start to a new phase.”

Admitting he was “really surprised” and pleased that the mini-tour sold out in a matter of days, he explained that the band wanted to play small clubs to reintroduce themselves to the fans and get back into the swing of gigging, before embarking on their major UK dates in April to promote the new release.

He said ‘The Remote Part’, which was recorded in stages over the last 14 months between touring America, with the bulk of it being written in October at a cottage in Inchnamph in the Highlands, reflected Idlewild‘s development, particularly their experience Stateside, where they grew in confidence playing a lot of acoustic gigs. “It sums up the last year perfectly. In the space of a year, people develop in different ways, and this album is a reflection of that.

“To me it feels like it’s been a very long, ongoing thing that stopped and started till about August, when we’d recorded ten songs that weren’t fitting together because we’d spent so long in between going on tour. Then we went to the Highlands and spent two and a half weeks writing the majority of the album.”

Of the album’s title, Roddy said it came from conversations he had with Scots Poet Laureate Edwin Morgan, who recorded a narrative for the end of the record, about their Scottish identity. “It alludes to the fact that we’ve been talking about this for the last five years, and it’s a way of finishing that. The next album will probably all be about girlfriends!”

Tickets are on sale now for the band’s April tour, which calls at:

Portsmouth Pyramid (April 18)

Leicester De Montfort University (19)

London Astoria (20)

Norwich Waterfront (22)

Exeter Lemon Grove (23)

Bristol Anson Room (24)

Wolverhampton Wulfrun Hall (26)

Leeds Met. University (28)

Warrington Parr Hall (29)

Cambridge Junction (30)

Newcastle University (May 1)

Edinburgh Queens Hall (3)

To buy tickets for the tour, [url=]click here or ring the NME Ticketline on 0870 1 663663. Calls are charged at national standard rate.