Paul Fegan’s first feature documentary follows Scottish cult-pop raconteur and former Arab Strap frontman Aidan Moffat as he tours Scotland in 2014, performing his modern re-interpretations of old folk songs.
It was meant to be a tour that celebrated communities and lore. But just before they hit the road, Moffat met Sheila Stewart: a 79-year-old force of nature, the last in a line of travelling folk royalty, and a balladeer whose life – and unexpected death, in 2014 – upturned Moffat’s folk assumptions, and diverted the course of Fegan’s film.
The ensuing film is a warm-hearted journey through music, mortality, landscape and time. It’s also a moving, wry and enlightening depiction of two of Scotland’s most distinct and vital voices, as they cross paths (and words): Moffat believes Scotland’s oldest songs are ripe for re-working against a contemporary urban backdrop. Stewart does not.