Matt Cardle to test debut album in Scotland

X FACTOR champ Matt Cardle will kick off his career with three intimate shows in Scotland.

The 28-year-old releases his first post-show single Run For Your Life and debut album Letters in October.

But the nervous star has decided – like many acts nowadays – to try out his live show in Scotland first.

The former painter and decorator will headline a special event in London that is yet to be announced.

But to get back into the swing of playing live, he will perform at Pickaquoy in Orkney on September 23 then at Clickamin, Shetland, the following night.

Then it’s back to the mainland to round things off at the Ironworks, Inverness, on September 28.

Matt said: “After months of being in the studio, I can’t wait to get out and actually play some of the tracks live before the album comes out.

“I also thought it would be fun to play these small shows somewhere a little bit off the beaten track”

Since winning the show in 2010 and scoring a debut No.1 with the reworked Biffy Clyro track When We Collide, Matt has spent the last four months writing and recording his Coldplay/Travis-style debut offering.

Run For Your Life will be released on October 9 ahead of the album Letters, which is out on October 17.

Matt revealed he hasn’t seen Simon Cowell since last December but has been told the X Factor guru has listened to the album and “loves it”. Matt added: “That could be people feeding me lines to keep me happy. But I’m pretty sure he’s enjoying it.”

Matt isn’t the first singer to use Scotland as a testing ground for new material ahead of bigger shows.

Most recently, Brit award winner Laura Marling played in Mull, Stornoway, Skye, Banchory, Orkney and Inverness.

In January, Glasvegas tested out what people thought of material from their second album in Wick, Oban, Dunoon, Troon and Hawick.

In Februrary, fresh from winning a Brit for best British album, Mumford & Sons had low-key gigs in the Highlands and islands, including Aros Hall in Tobermory and venues in Fort William, Stornoway, Inverness and Lerwick.

It’s not a new idea. Before releasing their third album Off With Their Heads in 2008, Kaiser Chiefs played two intimate venues in the Highlands in preparation for their huge Elland Road Stadium show.

The band performed at Strathpeffer Spa Pavilion, usually used for Scottish country dancing demonstrations, in front of a few hundred fans before playing Oban’s Corran Halls.