Fatherson’s new video

Hot on the heals of their live session for Feast/ SAMA, Fatherson have just released their new video ‘I like not knowing’.

Fatherson SAMA/FEAST session (part one)

Here’s the first video from the series of studio sessions we are doing with SAMA (Scottish Alternative Music Awards). This is the awesome Fatherson, with First Born for me, an acoustic mashup of two of their regular songs.

Outfit Q&A

Outfit

Liverpool has no shortage of great artists and another one to add to the list is Outfit. They released their debut album ‘Performance’ and are due to release the next single via Double Denim Records. We caught up with the five piece ahead of their set at the 6 Music Festival.

What gave you the idea to form a band? We’ve all played a wide range of music in other bands before, from noise to techno and with a fair bit of off-kilter pop music in between. We formed this one in the hope of generating a kind of emotional resonance that we weren’t getting from our projects at the time, but ultimately people form bands because of other bands – the desire to make something a listener can inhabit in the same way you do those first big albums you grow up with.

Is there a story behind the name? It’s a purposely open-sounding name, linking in to ideas about identity and self-presentation that we explore on the album and in our music in general. On the one hand it suggests artifice, while on the other it’s a broad and generic name for a group – basically both the big perils of naming your band.

How long have you been making music together?
With Outfit, three years but there are some long musical relationships from past collaborations, and me and Andy are brothers so we had a head start. Chris was the latest to the party, but there was around four years where the rest of us lived and worked together on a lot of different things, so we’ve built up a clear sense of how we gel together musically. We know each other so well that sometimes I get annoyed by the way Tom breathes.

What’s the funniest thing that’s happened at a gig/on tour? Leeds festival wouldn’t let us in, so Andy had to log on to our facebook to prove our identity. Then we played at the same time as The Cure, and they played The Cure before we went on. Thinking about it, I’m confusing “funny” with “humiliating”. Happens.

What’s your favourite track to play out live? The live version of Elephant Days is a bit more foot-on-the-monitor rock-out than might be expected from an Outfit set, as a closet metalhead I find that gratifying.

Can you tell us a bit about the music video for ‘I want What’s Best’?Andy sought the golden cowboy in the depths of Liverpool, once found his story was too good to miss – redemption through spraypaint and robot dancing, with a particularly cinematic pigeon. Check it out.

What are you up to in 2014? After this tour we’re going to hole up indefinitely and write a perfect album. The airwaves are clogged with enough mediocrity as it is – people should make less music, and listen more selectively.

Originally posted by Kyle Wilson in Through The Wire

ShowNProve Q&A

ShowNProve01_Logo10_Black_Final

Hi Show firstly thank you for taking the time out of your schedule to share your experiences with FEAST in an industry that we know is constantly in a state of flux.

So 2013 has been huge for you, how busy are you and how much work did you have to put in to achieve the success, its not as easy as people think is it???
Thanks man, it’s not been easy at all, ive been working on music since i was like 14 and djing since 11. It’s been ups and down but you’ve got to stick at it.
It’s all about staying busy with me though, trying to stay in the zone. It has a lot to do with timing I’m noticing too.

How do you prepare for the changes in the industry and how do you keep on top of the changes?I wouldn’t say I prepare for them or that I’m even that aware of them, I stay in my own bubble. I try to listen to as much stuff as I can to stay up to date but that’s about it really.

What’s in store for Show n Prove in the new year??
Lots! New single, new video, new gigs, new collabs. Maybe an instrumental release.

You’ve have worked with some great artists in the past who was the easiest to work with, the most fun to work, and are there any artist you worked with you just couldn’t believe you would ever have the chance to work with??

ermmm, Skinnyman is a lot of fun to work with, Rizzle Kicks too. Edinburgh rapper DeeZy was definitely the most difficult to work with. dally is really easy to work with, very professional. i was pure gassed when i worked with Big Narstie too, star struck even! he’s a legend.

Might have to drop the bombshell now but you use to study at what is now Edinburgh College Milton Road Campus how was college for you and did it help you become what you are today?
Yeah it probably did, I already knew a lot of what they were teaching us but for me at the time it was amazing to just have a place with an up to date computer I could go to and make beats. Plus a nice wee bursary bonus.

Are there any words of wisdom you can give to the would-be producers/artists studying at the campuses up and down the country??
Take advantage of free studio time and spend your bursary on travelling about I guess. That’s what I did.

Show N Prove’s new tunes ‘My People’ and ‘Zimma Frame’ are out now via iTunes & Amazon.
Posted by Duane

Lyndsey Craig Q&A

Lyndsey Craig

With the imminent release of her debut ep ‘Blue Jays’ and a forthcoming launch night at The Counting House in Edinburgh, Feast caught up with Lyndsey Craig for a chat.

How long have you been making music?I’ve been making music since the age of 8. My dad taught me ‘Twist And Shout’ on guitar and ever since I was hooked. I started writing much more serious songs at 12 and that’s when the YouTube channel was set up.

Who are your musical influences?
My Dad’s music taste really rubbed off on me as a kid. I grew up listening to rock n roll- Hendrix, Clapton (the lads.) But like any other musician I’m sure, my music taste changes daily. For example, I am absolutely loving Lorde and Disclosure right now.

What process goes into the way you write songs?I wish I could say I had some sort of recipe for writing a song but it’s all very random. I go through periods where I can’t write anything at all and then all of a sudden I’m writing a song in 10 minutes. Those creative times are when I abuse my guitar and songbook the most!

What can people expect from your live shows?
I adore playing live! My gigs are usually pretty intimate and end in me chatting and getting to know almost everyone there which i think is really important.

Funniest thing that’s ever happened at a gig?
My big sister crying. Literally every gig of mine she comes to she has tears in her eyes because she’s the only person who really knows what the songs are about. It’s quite adorable but I find it hilarious!

What can we expect to see/hear from you in the future?
2014 is a busy year for me. I have the launch of my debut EP, ‘BLUE JAYS’ 7.2.14 with the launch at the Counting House at 8pm. I’m playing numerous gigs around Edinburgh during February, March and April including playing alongside Natalie Reid at Sneaky Pete’s on the 28th of February. I also have a potential studio recording with an amazing artist who I won’t name just yet! She’s a big influence of mine and has a massive online following though- hint hint! Then just gig gig gig till summer and that’s when all the excitement really begins!

The Winter Tradition Q&A

Winter Tradition
At Feast, we like our local music. So Leah Curtis at Feast had a wee chat with Mark Morrow, guitar and backing vocals for “The Winter Tradition”.

What got you into music?
I was brought up in a very musical household. My dad was a drummer in a rock band, and his Dad played trumpet for a big band at the Glasgow Barrowlands. My uncle played guitar and I was always fascinated with it. I started playing when I was 7 and always wanted to start a band, even from that age!

Who or what inspired you to do so?
We first started a band when we were young at high school. I think around the age of 13/14. We used to listen to a lot of fast pop punk bands and always loved the idea of being in a band! We started playing our favourite songs together and gradually started to write out own.

What’s it like playing on stage? Do you get nervous?
Playing on stage is great – our band loves playing live and we are always trying to better our live show and production with each gig. We don’t really get nervous as such, is more of an excited feeling. Before we go on stage, we’re in our room doing vocal warm ups and generally trying to keep our excitement level stable!

Do you get recognised walking down the street?

Haha, I wish we did! We sometimes walk down the street and see the odd person walk past wearing our t-shirt. It’s a strange but good feeling!

If you had any superpower, what would it be and why?

Good question! And one question I spend lots of time thinking about! I think I would chose the power of flying. No reason really – just think it would be fun to be able to do.

What advice would you give aspiring musicians and/or bands who are starting out/wanting to start something?
Being in a band is hard work and covers a wide range of jobs. Writing and performing music is quite a small (but most important) part of being in a band. When you start out, you are acting as manager, booking agent, press contact, driver, roadie, merch seller and lots more! It’s very fun but can be quite intense sometimes! Put in the hard work and you will start to see what works and what doesn’t!

The Winter Tradition are on tour during Jan/Feb. Tour dates are as follows:

29th Jan – The Cookie Jar, Leicester
30th Jan – The Hop, Wakefield
31st Jan – Upstairs @ The Garage, London
6th Feb – King Tuts, Glasgow
7th Feb – Tolbooth, Stirling
8th Feb – Cafe Drummonds, Aberdeen
9th Feb – Madhatters, Inverness
10th Feb – Heriot-Watt University, Galashiels
11th Feb – Duke’s Corner, Dundee
15th Feb – Twa Tams, Perth

New Single ‘Departures’ out 10th Feb on iTunes and www.thewintertradition.com .
Posted by Leah

Edinburgh Hogmanay Review

2014
Feast started the night over at the main stage enclosure with Edinburgh’s own The 10:04′s opening the proceedings.
The band only played a 20 minute set, but they made sure they left a lasting impression on the huge crowd.
Having seen the boys play in practically ever venue across the city, they showed that they have the tunes and the swagger to make the leap into the big time league.
The formidable frontmen of Steven Bolton and Danny Scrimshaw looked confident, as they exchanged vocal duties
The brooding ‘Lights Out’ and ‘Throes’ sound taught, delicate and romantic, yet full of harmony,sung with boys Scottish brogue, it’s a fantastic contemporary direction.
They played a set laden with newer tracks, it was a great showcase to highlight the fantastic new music, currently being produced in Edinburgh.
Whilst I wished the 04s had ended their set, how they normally do, with the gloriously noisy ‘About Tonight’, as it would’ve kicked off the night with a bang, but that’s just preference.

Next up we meandered through the masses for Chvrches.
The next big Scottish export for sure, having enthralling audiences across the pond and their tracks being played absolutely everywhere.
Chvrches cross-over success has been astounding and looks certain to continue with mainstream dominance in 2014.
Devoid of any, high tech lighting, or imagery, the trio, let their music let the crowd know exactly what they were about. The trio made up of Iain Cook and Martin Doherty mixing familiar yet bittersweet electro soundscapes behind Lauren Mayberry sugar-sweet vocals, effortlessly cajoling those in front of them to dance.
Mayberry’s haunting vocals soared across the still night air as the synth pop soundscape of We Sink and the aura of The Mother We Share further set
The gem of their set proved to be the shimmering Under the Tide, with Doherty taking the mic – the vocal exchange between him and Mayberry creating a pumping electro but brilliantly understated track. A fantastic set from Scotland’s next massive band.

Django Django are the new party band!
The new festival headline band du jour!
End of story. The atmosphere before the boys jumped on stage, was electric.
These boys have upped the game, before,they were eclectic, enthralling and exciting, now they are the finished article, strutting about the Waverly stage they had the crowd dancing as they juggled instruments and synths as their arsenal of tracks stormed the stage.
The mathematical future disco kings warp a plethora of influences from 70s prog, afrobeat percussion, and pounding synths into a a full on pounding, euphoric, electric party.
Crowd favourites ‘Hail Bop and ‘Default’ had the crowd bouncing into a fevered mess before the bells and fireworks.
A completely fitting night, to one of the country’s exciting band, here’s hoping Django Django are playing the festivals.

With such a strong Scottish line up (we’re claiming Django Django as half of the band are Scottish) of exciting music, its a great platform to show off the Scottish music scene.

Posted by Stacy

Let Love Rule Q&A

Let Love Rule

Currently rehearsing for their headlining show at Sneaky Pete’s this Sunday (22nd Dec), I caught up with Edinburgh band Let Love Rule.

 

 

 

How long have you been making music together?

We formed earlier this year and have been gigging since June.

Is there a story behind the name?

Yes, it’s actually the name of Lenny Kravitz’s first album! It’s also represents a kind of attitude about letting your passions determine your ambitions.

Who are your musical influences?

Jeff Buckley, Karnivool, Deftones, John Martyn, Jamie Woon, Palms, Sigur Ros. Also a lot can be said for more local acts and friends who share similar ideals.

What process goes into the way you write songs?

I write the chords and vocals, and a have a general outline of where the song needs to go. And then I’ll take it into rehearsal and the guys are so creative in their own right they always add so many more dimensions and take it to another level.

What can people expect from your live shows?

We are still refining our sound, so we cover a few different elements. We always try to create a big atmosphere though by building to climaxes in some songs, but always having them rooted in layered, spacey melodies. Our next one is going to be the best yet!

Funniest thing that’s ever happened at a gig?

Our gigs are usually very sombre affairs. Handkerchiefs, tubs of Haagen-Dazs, and communal tear jugs are a regular feature. We are working on this though, and have a slapstick routine lined up for the next one! ;)

What can we expect to see/hear from you in the future?

We are going to be recording early next year and will have a single out by spring, with an EP coming out in time for summer. We are also in discussions with some summer festivals and are hoping to get plenty of gigs up and down the UK around the same time.

Let Love Rule play at Sneaky Pete’s in Edinburgh on Sunday 22nd December, 7pm.

 

Posted by Paul.

 

 

Live Review – STRFKR at The Electric Circus, Edinburgh

STRFKR Live

 

 

 

 

 

Artist: STRFKR
Support: Miracle Strip
Rating: Despite their relatively unknown status in the UK, STRFKR performed to a near capacity venue and gave everyone in the room a reason to just let themselves go.

STRFKR are no strangers to touring but you could say that they are strangers to our side of the ocean. Embarking on their first ever full UK tour, the band started at London’s Hoxton Plaza and ended with a date at the Bodega Social Club in Nottingham. Wedged in the middle of the five British dates, the Portland four piece played in Edinburgh’s very own Electric Circus to an energetic crowd, and they showed exactly why their live shows are so well liked.

Scottish band, Miracle Strip, were the one and only support band for the night and, from the couple of songs that I managed to catch*, I just…got them. Sometimes you see support bands and you wonder why on earth they’re supporting certain acts, but these local lads fit the bill just wonderfully. They were able to warm up the crowd just right for the headliners, and I definitely expect to see more from them.

After just a short break, STRFKR took the stage and own it they did. Playing songs such as Atlantis and While I’m Alive, as well as their own cover of Girls Just Wanna Have Fun, they gave the crowd a perfect reason to just forget everything and everyone around them. Looking around, the entire room was moving from people full on dancing by themselves to others bobbing along with every single word that came out of the singer’s mouth.

This show saw singer, Josh Hodges, and drummer, Keil Corcoran, swap places for a couple of songs, and this threw in a little more magic to the mix. With the venue having a strict curfew of 10pm, the band finished their set but found it difficult to ignore the Edinburgh chants of “one more tune!” over and over again. They threw caution to the wind and ignored any shouts that they may have received, playing that ‘one more tune’ for attendees and fulfilling everyone’s wish like asked.

Their one final push, including them joining the crowd and sending everyone crazy, left everyone in the room more than satisfied and gave everybody a night that they’re sure to remember. They proved that they don’t particularly need the theatrics of their other shows and are more than able to give an amazing live show no matter the venue, the crowd size or whatever country they happen to be in. Big things are coming for them and, personally, I can’t wait to have them back on Scottish soil.

(*I was lucky enough to sit down with Josh (vocals) and Patrick (guitar) for an interview just before their set. Look out for that pretty soon!)

Posted by: Hayley Isara

(Originally posted on: (RE)DISCOVER http://sowerediscover.tumblr.com

GoodCopGreatCop Q&A

GoodCopGreatCop

Currently in the middle of a Scottish tour to promote their brand new single “Stuck Amongst The Details”, I caught up with Perth based band GoodCopGreatCop

 

 

 

How long have you been making music together?

As a full band about a year and a half.

Is there a story behind the name?
We’re a fan of four syllable band names, American Cop shows and The Naked Gun 2.

Who are your musical influences?
Foals, The Gaslight Anthem, The National, The 1975, The Xcerts, Brigade, Twin Atlantic, Biffy Clyro, really any band which has worked hard to be in the place they are today

What process goes into the way you write songs?
Well, one member of the band usually comes up with an idea or a template for a song, once we’ve got something solid, we play around with rhythms, vocal harmonies and try and develop some kind of interesting structure. We originally wrote songs to try and be different in terms of structure but recently we’ve found our poppier side which is probably better for a wider demographic. Our vocalist and guitarist Andy usually writes most of the lyrics while the general bass, melody and rhythm parts are written by everyone else.

What can people expect from your live shows?
We’d like to say fireworks, dragons, dancers and a monkey riding on a Segway whilst downing a pint of Jaeger but unfortunately we’re not financially stable enough in order to provide our audience with such perks. Instead you can expect a lot of energy and some half decent loud pop/rock songs, chants and maybe the odd ginger.

Funniest thing that’s ever happened at a gig?
Either, having to pay to play for a competition that we won through a voting system OR getting Glasgow’s 13th Note to “dae the bouncy”. We may have promised every member of the audience a pint if they were to do so…….

What can we expect to see/hear from you in the future?
Hopefully, lots of gigging including festival slots, a brand spanking new EP released before new year, some radio play, hopefully more interviews like this and our general enthusiasm and love for this band.

And finally, do you have any advice for up and coming musicians?
Well, since we are basically up and coming ourselves all we can really say to bands starting out is don’t be afraid to approach everyone, these people may be promoters, A & R’s, talent scouts or they may just generally know someone of use to you. There’s no point in starting a band unless you’re able to speak to folk and seem approachable yourselves.

The GoodCopGreatCop tour continues:

Friday 15th Nov – Monty’s Bar – Dunfermline

Saturday 16th Nov – The Green Room – Perth

Sunday 17th Nov – Buskers – Dundee

Saturday 23rd Nov – Henry’s Cellar – Edinburgh

Saturday 30th Nov – Bar and fly – Glasgow

ITUNES LINK:   https://t.co/sHETtqozsE

Honeyblood Q&A

honeybloodTheir single ‘Bud’ has just been released and they have recently just been on UK tour, I caught up with Glasgow based Honeyblood.

How long have you been making music together?

We started the band around the beginning of 2012. I’d been writing a few songs before that but didn’t have our first gig till Feb and then we released our tape in April.

Is there a story behind the name?

It comes from a few things… i think it fits our bittersweet nature. It’s also a lyric from a Hole song.

Who are your musical influences?

The Breeders, Throwing Muses, PJ Harvey, Jenny Lewis and Morrissey… to name a few!

Funniest thing that’s ever happened at a gig?

We crashed our car in London last week before our single launch at Servant Jazz Quarters. It wasn’t funny at the time but we’re laughing about it now.

What was it like signing a deal with FatCat?

It’s been great. Fat Cat are like a family. We’ve had an absolute ball working with them to date so hopefully it can only get better with the album.

You’ve just released the single ‘Bud’, what’s on the cards for the future?

Yep, so we’re away to America this week to record an album which should be out next year.

And finally, do you have any advice for up and coming musicians?

Always play as loud as you can.

Latest single from Honeyblood

Posted by Kyle Wilson

(Originally posted on throughthewire: http://throughthewiremusic.wordpress.com)

Award Winners, Nominees & Hit Makers – This week’s gigs in Edinburgh.

D Feast Logo (lofi)Hello! We have another week of quality gigs coming up in Edinburgh. The Queen’s Hall plays host to Mark Lanegan this coming Monday. The following night at the same venue, Irish- indie quintet, Villagers, follow up their 2013 Mercury Music Prize Nomination with a visit to Edinburgh. On Wednesday night former drummer for The Coral, Ian Skelly, plays The Voodoo Rooms with his band The Serpent Power. Also on Wednesday Bipolar Sunshine and Public Service Broadcasting take to the stage at The Electric Circus and The Picture House respectively. If you like your Rock music with a tint of Blues local three-piece The Southpaws play Whistlebinkies this Thursday night. BBC World Music Musician of the Year Winner, Rokia Traore, takes to the stage at The Liquid Room on Friday Night.

This Saturday we are spoiled for choice. There’s a massive ten band bill at Verden Studios in Portobello as part of a showcase to highlight fantastic local talent with entry just £7. It seems like an age since Turin Brakes once peppered the single charts with hit after hit, they’ve put their hiatus to the side and return to Edinburgh’s The Pleasance as part of a small UK Tour. William Douglas and The Wheel, Woodenbox and Hanna Tuulikki’s new project Two Wings are also playing at various venues this Saturday. Finally, Glaswegian Singer-Songwriter and BBC Radio DJ Roddy Hart continues his Scottish Tour at The Voodoo Rooms with his band The Lonesome Fire on Sunday Night. Happy Gigging!

Monday 4th of November

Mark Lanegan

The Queen’s Hall 7pm £20

The Sunshine Underground & King Dinosaur

Electric Circus 8pm £12.50

Gabby Young and Other Animals & Old Dollar Bill

Bannermans Rock Club 8pm £8

Lach’s Antihoot Open Stage

Henry’s Cellar Bar 7pm Free

Chris Finn

Royal Mile Tavern 9pm Free

Tuesday 5th of November

Villagers

The Queen’s Hall 7pm £12

Hamish Hope, Pistol Day, Compliments Of & The Diversions

Whistlebinkies 8pm Free

The Tillers & Pokey LaFarge

The Liquid Room 7pm £15

The Coal Porters

Leith Folk Club 7.30pm £9

Kapten Trio

The Brunton, Musselburgh £6 1pm

Wednesday 6th of November

Ian Skelly and The Serpent Power & The Jackals

The Voodoo Rooms 7.30pm £12

Public Service Broadcasting

Picture House 7pm £12

Bipolar Sunshine

Electric Circus 7pm £6

Chris Thile

The Queen’s Hall 8pm £15

Chris Finn, Tombstone Houseband & Splendid Gentlemen

Whistlebinkies 7pm Free

Thursday 7th of November

The Last September & Jake Morley

The Voodoo Rooms 7.30pm £6

The Southpaws & Lee Paterson

Whistlebinkies 7pm Free

Anna Massie & Mairearad Green

42 Royal Park Terrace 7.30pm

Future Heroes

The Jazz Bar 11.30pm £3

Born To Be Wide: Record Shop Seminar

Electric Circus 7pm £5

Friday 8th of November

Mt. Wolf

Sneaky Pete’s 7pm £7

Afterlife, Garrison & Moosenuckle

The Voodoo Rooms 7pm £10

Shooting Stansfield

The Real Mary King’s Close 10.30pm £8

Rokia Traore

The Liquid Room 7pm £19

Chordless Beaches, Slumber Club, The Mona Lisa’s & Fall Rockets

Cabaret Voltaire 7pm £5

Saturday 9th of November

Turin Brakes

The Pleasance 7.30pm £20.50

William Douglas and The Wheel, Jaquimo & Elyssa Vulpes

The Voodoo Rooms 8pm £8

Numbers Are Futile, Your Loyal Subjects, Birdhead, And The Moose Came In Second, Pineapple Chunks, The Tide Inside, The Blue Ship, Royal Edinburgh Music, Lipsync For A Lullaby & The Forgotten Works

Verden Studios 7pm £7

Woodenbox & Pronto Mama

Electric Circus 7pm £7

Two Wings, Doug Tielli & Nap Shortly

The Wee Red Bar 7pm £6

Sunday 10th of November

Roddy Hart and The Lonesome Fire

The Voodoo Rooms 7pm £12

Capercaillie

Usher Hall 7pm £20

Eric Bibb & Michael Jerome Brown

The Queen’s Hall 7pm £20

Sweet Baboo

Electric Circus 7pm £7

Ross Arthur

Henry’s Cellar Bar 7.30pm

 

Posted by James Scott

 

PREVIEW: STRFKR

STRFKRArtist: STRFKR
Label: Polyvinyl Records
Listen to: Beach Monster, While I’m Alive, Florida
It was through the grapevine – a grapevine in the shape of Youtube daily vlogger, Charles Trippy (Internet Killed Television / CTFxC) – that I discovered this band in 2010. Starfucker, stylised as STRFKR, are an electronic infused four piece hailing from Portland, Oregon and are what you would get if you threw the likes of Miniature Tigers and The XX into a mixer and pressed ‘go’. You may be wondering what the outcome of that would be, and the answer is simple: endless minutes of unadulterated awesome.

After signing to Illinois’ Polyvinyl Records, STRFKR have released two full length albums with their most recent, Miracle Mile, being released in February of this year. With songs that fit any kind of mood, the band can accompany you while you do anything from studying or driving to dancing as though you’re having the time of your life. It’s with Miracle Mile that the band are hopping across the big pond for a slew of UK tour dates this autumn, hitting Edinburgh’s Electric Circus on November 16th with Miracle Strip. They’ll be bringing their catchy, “foot tap worthy” songs along with them and their passion fueled live shows are sure to leave any fortunate passer-by a new but thoroughly satisfied fan.

Tickets for the band’s show can be bought at Ripping Records (Edinburgh), Tickets Scotland (Edinburgh & Glasgow) or through the venue itself.

Posted by Hayley

 

Fortune’s Oxjam & more- this week’s gigs

1379690_528759867194830_1671516582_n[1]Hello! This weekend in Edinburgh we welcome back the Oxjam Unsigned Festival. Over Friday and Saturday Oxjam gives us the opportunity to see some of the best names in the local music scene and all for a good cause too. The three venues hosting Oxjam this year are The Banshee Labyrinth, Bannermans Rock Club and The City Café. The notable acts on show over the weekend include Feast favourites Redolent and Victorian Trout Conspiracy. The festival also plays host to Sea Bass Kid, New Urban Frontier, Plastic Babies, Jamie & Shoony and one of Edinburgh’s hidden musical gems Matt Stockl. For all info on Oxjam click here

Outside of Oxjam Universal Thee play their fourth Edinburgh gig in two weeks as they support Plastic Babies at Sneaky Pete’s on Thursday night. With a cracking set, increasing audiences and national radio play Universal Thee are fast becoming the must see band in Edinburgh. Also on Thursday Meursault play support to Saint Motel in a free gig at The Caves and The Deep Red Sky play Electric Circus. On Saturday Bergen’s finest female rockers My Misspent Youth play Henry’s Cellar Bar and Song, By Toad Records have a showcase at The Pleasance with William Henry Arthur and Zed Penguin amongst the host of acts playing. Finally, if you fancy some early Halloween fun, Gin Goblins, Critikill and Geek Maggot Bingo play their yearly Halloween gig at Bannermans this weekend, it will be extremely loud and probably not one for the faint hearted. Happy Gigging!

Monday 21st

Grant Hart

Sneaky Pete’s 7pm £8

Euros Child

Cabaret Voltaire 7pm £10

Lach’s Antihoot Open Stage

Henry’s Cellar Bar 7pm Free

Brian Hogan

Malone’s 10pm Free

Alex Taylor

Finnegans Wake 10pm Free

Tuesday 22nd

Mike Heron & Trembling Bells

Electric Circus 8pm £10

Heather Peace

Voodoo Rooms 7.30pm £21

Alex Taylor, Pork Pie & The Diversions

Whistlebinkies 8pm Free

Bleeker

Black Bull9pm Free

Cherry Pickers

Finnegans Wake 10pm Free

Wednesday 23rd

Let’s Buy Happiness

Sneaky Pete’s 7pm £6

The Growlers & Tomorrows’ Tulips

Electric Circus 7pm £7.50

Swim Deep, Prides & Purple Emperors

Picture House 7pm £8

Focus

The Caves 7.15pm £16

Eddie Walker & Fraser Speirs

The Pleasance 7.30pm £10

Thursday 24th

Plastic Babies, Universal Thee & Little Love and The Friendly Vibes

Sneaky Pete’s 7pm

The Garden Gang

Citrus Club 7pm

The Deep Red Sky, Amidships & Owls In Antarctica

Electric Circus 7pm £4

Conquering Animal Sound, Little Buddha, Plum & Engine7

The Pleasance 7.30pm £7

Saint Motel, Meursault & Star Wheel Press

The Caves 8pm Free

Friday 25th

Oxjam Unsigned 2013: Victorian Trout Conspiracy, Redolent, New Urban Frontier, Let Love Rule, Another Blurry Photo & Lethalise

Bannermans Rock Club 8pm (£6 Day Ticket £10 Weekend Ticket)

Oxjam Unsigned 2013: The Jacarandas, My Electric Love Affair, Sonic Hearts Foundation, Kung Fu Academy, Where’s George & Lewis Kaye

The Banshee Labyrinth 8pm (£6 Day Ticket £10 Weekend Ticket)

Oxjam Unsigned 2013: See Bass Kid, Mad Tango, Green Tambourine Band, Keli Thomson, Rebecca Shearing & Becky and The Lunar Orchestra

The City Café 8pm (£6 Day Ticket £10 Weekend Ticket)

The Outer Church, Black Mountain Transmitter, Embla Quickbeam & Broken 3

Wee Red Bar 6pm £5

Three Blind Wolves

The Pleasance 7.30pm £8

Saturday 26th

Oxjam Unsigned 2013: Matt Stockl, Jamie and Shoony, Plastic Babies, The Violent Mood Swings, Frantic Chant, Gigantic Leaves, Isaac Webb and The Ransel Men, Georgia Gordon, Berg and Boys & Publisher Arno Blok

The City Café 5pm (£6 Day Ticket £10 Weekend Ticket)

Oxjam Unsigned 2013: Charly Houston, Folk Rag, Shuna Cook, Thirtythreeconnection, The Monalisa’s, Man of Moon & Collar Up

Banshee Labyrinth 5pm (£6 Day Ticket £10 Weekend Ticket)

My Misspent Youth & Mayonnaise

Henry’s Cellar Bar 7pm £5

Gin Goblins, Critikill & Geek Maggot Bingo

Bannermans Rock Club 8pm £5

William Henry Arthur, Le Thug, Naked, Plastic Animals & Zed Penguin

The Pleasance 7.30pm £12

Sunday 27th

Resonators

Studio 24 7pm £10

Catfish Keith

The Voodoo Rooms 7.30pm £12

The Bermondsey Joyriders & Media Whores

Bannermans Rock Club 8pm £8

Holy Moly and The Crackers & Firedog Empire

Wee Red Bar 7pm £5

Lucky Red Hat

Belushi’s 6pm Free

 

Posted by James Scott

Album Review – TH!NK | Headspace

think 2I got TH!NK’s record a couple of weeks ago and I have been listening to it every day since. It’s full of top tracks with old school sounds and rhymes that are well-constructed, cool, funny and thought provoking; and if you’ll excuse the pun- I think that’s the point. Headspace shows TH!NK has a pretty cool record collection and his album is full of great samples, loops, beats that sits it on the wrong side of copyright clearance so this might be a collection of tunes that don’t stay around for ever.

There are a hell of a lot of standout tracks and this makes Headspace a pretty remarkable body of work. If I had to single of some tunes I’d start with his track Idris which I thought  was about Stringer Bell, simply because both the track and Idris Elba are cool as, but it turns out it uses a sample from a tune featuring  drumming legends Idris Muhammed. Consider me educated.

Mingus is also killer track which also has my second favourite funny as f**k lyric and rhymes that sum up a lot of people’s opinions on politics.

There are many reasons I have been listening to Headspace over and over; its packed full of real highlights, Natural has a rather wicked love letter to women that has one of the best sing-a-longs I’ve heard in a while, but it’s almost unfair to single out individual tracks as there are just so many great tunes. I had a long chat with TH!NK about his record. He wanted to make an album that gave people a window into his head and what occupies his mind.

Surprisingly for such a well-constructed collection, he hates mixing. He talked about how his tunes evolve from samples, loops, beats and rhymes. He also talked about making tunes quickly. This was something that he’s only learnt recently; the tunes you make and put together quickly have the best energy, the ones that take too long lose their power. Headspace been two or three years in the making and TH!NK has plenty more tunes, rhymes, and styles to push. Currently making his way through South America and up to New Orleans, I am sure he will find more inspiration along the way.  Check Headspace out sharpish.

Interview: Average Andy

D Feast Logo (lofi)Alternative rockers (with a punk ethos) “Average Andy” from Glasgow have been blasting your eardrums with music since 2012. Leah Curtis from Feast had a chat with the man who started it all.

Feast – So Andy, you actually started as a solo project in 2011. What made you gather a group of lovely people to play with you?

Average Andy – I started off the Average Andy project in 2011 with the intention of building it into a band. It wasn’t until mid-2012 that I started looking for band members. I wanted my music to have a richer more full bodied sound. Although, I often play acoustic gigs I wanted to play in an Alternative Rock band, and to get that I needed band members. I have been through more band members than Spinal Tap has drummers. This was due to the fact I like to work at a fast rate and a lot of players cannot keep up. I have found that a lot of players have a pessimistic attitude to making it. I have had good musicians play within the band before but the current line-up has been the most efficient and functional so far. Everyone is a top player and I am lucky to have them on board.

Feast –  So, what made you think of the name “Average Andy”?

Average Andy – The name Average Andy came about so I could have a sort of alter ego for the music so that I was more flexible in what I could write and could keep my music and personal life a bit separate. In my opinion the to have people check out your stuff as a musician you have to have a memorable name, it has to be found easily and if you are lucky it sounds cool or is interesting. The later not that important. So I chose Average Andy as my name is Andy, the name roles of the tongue, there was no one in music using the name and the name is rather unique. It also has a punk undertone to it. The Average man doing good. Also, I thought if I called my act Average Andy I wouldn’t have to worry about being flamboyant and people thinking I was egotistical. Surprise surprise, people think I have an ego with the name. Haha! The band is called Average Andy the way Jimmy Eat World etc. have a name in the title. If you Facebook or Google search the name we dominate the first two pages.

Feast – I’ll have to check that out then! Who is/are your biggest inspiration?

Average Andy – The other band members all have a number of their own influences. Mine are David Bowie, Billy Corgan, Kurt Cobain, Johnny Cash, Dave Grohl, Billy Joel Armstrong, The Rolling Stones to name a few in the music industry. I take a lot of influence from art, books, and online media as well. A few of my favourite writers are Philip K. Dick, Terry Pratchett, George Orwell and Aldous Huxley. I like the work of a number of philosophers such as Friedrich Nietzsche, Abraham Maslow and Socrates. I like Mark Twain’s work too.

Feast – Sounds awesome! Do you have a favourite record?

Average Andy – Ah…that is too hard to answer. That is like asking a musician do they have a particular air molecule they enjoying breathing. Of the top of my head, a number of albums that are albums I have enjoyed are “Hunky Dorey” by Bowie, “By the Way” by Red Hot Chili Peppers, “Trompe Le Monde” by The Pixies, “Rated R” by Queens of The Stoneage and “The Bends” by Radiohead.

Feast – Nice! If you had any superpower, what would it be and why?

Average Andy – I like the thought of self healing and anti- aging. Technology seems to be doing a decent job of that just now. Haha. Some sort of mind control that would let me tune everyone’s brain so there was no apathy and greed in the world. Tune in peoples thoughts so they can discuss ideas and come up with solutions that benefit mankind. Failing that the water to booze trick Jesus does. It would be great at parties.

Feast – Sounds cool! And finally, any advice for young people who are just starting off in a band? (Regardless of the genre of music they play)

Average Andy – Number one would have to be write good music. Let friends who are critical but who will not friends who get jealous rate your music. If you get a critical opinion from an honest bundle of friends that say your music is good then you know you are onto something. Let strangers here your music. If they like it then you know you are on the right track. Do not hang around people who are negative towards your music once you know it is good. They will only hold you back.

Second, don’t aim to be similar to a band. Aim to be better than them. It is hard to stand out nowadays and there is no point trying to be the next Paramore, Foo Fighters, Oasis etc. when there are plenty of bands like these about. Make your own sound. Take elements of sound from other bands but have your own sound. Do you want to have limited success and live in the shadow of a band or aim as high as possible?

Have an aim of where you want to be with the band. Then work back the way figuring out how to achieve this. You want to play T in the Park? Well who are the organisers and the people who will get you on the bill? Impress them. Find out which taste makes and gate keepers you need on your side and go impress them. You will need to work hard and play small gigs to build a fan base. Then play bigger gigs with known bands. Play gigs with promoters who work with the people who get you on to T in the Park and impress them. If you have several people who are respected by the organisers/people who put on T in the Park then they will check out your band and you are in the running for getting a slot.

Build a buzz for your band. At first people will not be interested in you. Keep at it. Keep building your fan base till whoever you want playing your music or writing about you has to do it because you are so popular. If you go to a local radio presenter and say that you have an online fan base of about 3,000 people and these people will probably listen to your show. Then chances are the presenter will play your track.

Build a band CV. Why should promoters, presenters, writers check you out? Good stats. If you have supported a number of known local bands, have a decent sized fan base etc. then these people will check you out and may work with you as you can sell their show, gig, online blog etc. Your band CV has to be better than 10,000 other band CV’s out there to get somewhere.

There are many other pieces of advice I can offer to bands. If you want to ask a question then feel free to PM the band on Facebook or tweet us on Twitter and we will get back to you.

The final piece of advice I will give here is DO NOT PLAY A PAY TO PLAY GIG. It is exploitation. The 90% of promoters that use this practice will not do anything to benefit your career. They actually hinder it as they will be taking away your hard earned income which you can be used to promote your band in a more efficient way. If you want to know which promoters to use around the central belt of Glasgow and the West coast of Scotland then message the band. We will share the info. We are currently working on our network around the North, East and South of Scotland too. If a gig really benefits you then play it for free. If not then expect to have a cut or be paid. DO NOT DO PAY TO PLAY GIGS. The promoter is putting money before your music.

Feast – Wow, thanks for that Andy! I’m sure a lot of people will be grateful for your advice! J

Average Andy – Thanks for the interview!

Average Andy’s upcoming gigs:

16th October 2013 – Supporting ifoundation for jogle 2014

19th October 2013 – Dundee Oxjam

27th October 2013 – Supporting “The Ratells”

You can find the boys on Facebook at:
https://www.facebook.com/pages/Average-Andy/141853925872377?fref=ts

 

Posted by Leah Curtis

Haddowfest & more

Hello! Edinburgh serves up a truly phenomenal feast of music this week! Haddowfest returns on Friday and Saturday with a huge number of bands playing in various venues across the city. The Rifles, The Holy Ghosts, Dry the River and We Were Promised Jetpacks are the headliners with some quality bands further down the bill including Ded Rabbit, OK Social Club, Caravan Club & Death Ape Disco. You can get all the all the info on who’s playing here at http://www.haddowfest.co.uk/

Outside of Haddowfest Johnny Marr & Ellie Goulding both play on Tuesday night at The Picture House and Usher Hall respectively. On Wednesday one of Jim Gellatly’s new favourite bands, Universal Thee, brace the stage at Bannermans where they deliver music that has been described as “reminiscent of The Pixies at their finest”, With support coming from Headshrinker and Fishing For Seagulls it will be a memorable night. Also on Wednesday the fantastic Redolent and Ruby McKinnell play The Voodoo Rooms. Furthermore Miaoux Miaoux, John Knox Sex Club, Lanterns on the Lake, Siobhan Wilson, Kathryn Williams and Victorian Trout Conspiracy are all playing this week. Rarely does any city anywhere produce such a sumptuous line-up in just one week. Happy Gigging!

Monday 7th

Blue Embrace & Neon Tetras

Bannermans Rock Club 8pm £5

Denys Baptiste

Usher Hall 7.30pm £16.50

Scholars & Copper Lungs

Electric Circus 7pm £6

Lach’s Antihoot Open Stage

Henry’s Cellar Bar 7pm Free

Nordic Giants, Vasa & Tidings

Cabaret Voltaire 7pm £5

Tuesday 8th

Johnny Marr

Picture House 7pm £19.50

Ellie Goulding

Usher Hall 7pm £19.50

Ed Muirhead

Henry’s Cellar Bar 7pm

Scott Cook

Leith Folk Club 7.30pm £7

Crosscut Saw & The Diversions

Whistlebikies 8pm

 

Wednesday 9th

Universal Thee, Headshrinker & Fishing For Seagulls

Bannermans Rock Club 8pm £5

Splashh, Charlie Boyer,  The Voyeurs & Deathcats

Electric Circus 7pm £9

Victorian Trout Conspiracy

The Blind Poet 10pm Free

Scotia, Redolent, The Rich & Ruby McKinnell

The Voodoo Rooms 7pm £5

Chris Finn, Let Love Rule, Kings Close & Splendid Gentlemen

Whistlebinkies 7pm

Thursday 10th

Miaoux Miaoux, Jonnie Common & Cairn String Quartet

The Pleasance 7.30pm £9

The Jim Jones Revue

The Caves 7pm £14

Bat-Bike & Fats Dominion

Henry’s Cellar Bar 7pm £5

Two Wings

Wee Red Bar 7pm £6

Moderat

Picture House 7pm £19.50

Friday 11th

Haddowfest 2013 Day One

Various venues around Edinburgh (http://www.haddowfest.co.uk/)

Kathryn Williams & Alex Cornish

The Caves 7pm £15

The Ramonas

Electric Circus 7pm £8

John Knox Sex Club & Over The Wall

The Pleasance 7.30pm £6

The Spook School & Plastic Animals

Henry’s Cellar Bar 7pm £5

The Rifles & The Holy Ghosts

Picture House 6.30pm £15

Saturday 12th

Haddowfest 2013 Day Two

Various venues around Edinburgh (http://www.haddowfest.co.uk/)

Ahab, Matt Norris and the Moon & The Blind Dog

Electric Circus 7pm £7

Brown Brogues

Henry’s Cellar Bar 7pm £5

Rick Redbeard, Honeyblood, Law & Siobhan Wilson

The Pleasance  7.30pm £7

Lipsync For A Lullaby,  Your Loyal Subjects & Numbers Are Futile

The Voodoo Rooms 8pm £4

The Canyon & The Scabby Queen

Bannermans Rock Club 8pm £5

Sunday 13th

Lanterns On The Lake

Electric Circus 7pm £8

Culture Shock, Roots System, Big Fat Panda & Random Scandal

Citrus Club 7pm £10

Hooded Priest, Arkham Witch, Iron Void & Atragon

Bannermans Rock Club 7pm £6

The Simon Brett Band & Bannockburn

Whistlebinkies 9pm

Warsaw Village Band

The Jam House 7pm

Gig Listings 30th September- 6th October

Greetings and Fàilte! Another week of quality gigs coming up in Edinburgh this week. Amongst the big names in town this week are Laura Mvula, 2013 Glastonbury debutants Everything Everything and Ex-Razorlight frontman Johnny Borrell.

At the Usher Hall on Tuesday night is Joy Division Reworked, an ‘Electro-Orchestral reinterpretation’ of Joy Division’s best work ‘delivered in a unique audio-visual manner’. Having drawn many comparisons with Biffy Clyro and Jimmy Eat World Belfast’s best More Than Conquerers rock up in town at Sneaky Pete’s on Saturday night. Following on from spontaneous gigs in their local Asda (seriously, google it if you don’t believe me) Jamie and Shoony play the Liquid Rooms with Kooks-esque catchiness. Finally, for anyone out there who is a fan of Celtic Trad, you know who you are – you tell your housemates that you were channel flicking and just happened by chance to stop on BBC Alba, then Corran Raa are a must see. They formed, somewhat inevitably for a Trad band, on an uninhabited Hebridean Island and have had people jigging on both sides of the Atlantic ever since. So, once again, Dùn Èideann gives us a giant eclectic musical hug! Happy Gigging!

Monday 30th

Laura Mvula
Queens Hall 7pm £15
CJ Boyd, Mikael Lind & Convex Mancave
The Banshee Labyrinth 8pm £5
Dead Meadow
Sneaky Pete’s 7pm £8
Lach’s Antihoot Open Stage
Henry’s Cellar Bar 7pm Free
Muckle Flugga
Whiski Bar 9.30pm Free

Tuesday 1st
Joy Division Reworked
Usher Hall 8pm £18.50
Johnny Borrell, Zazou, Pat Dan Smyth & Z Berg
Cabaret Voltaire 7pm £10
Greg Trooper
Leith Folk Club 7.30pm £9
The Twang & Jaws
Electric Circus 7pm £14
The White Wizard, Monument & Toledo Steel
The Banshee Labyrinth 7pm

Wednesday 2nd
Gramme & Digital Jones
Electric Circus 7pm £7
Adam Holmes & The Embers
The Voodoo Rooms 7.30pm
ACV
The Jazz Bar 8pm £7
Corran Raa
Edinburgh Folk Club 8pm £10
The Imperfectionists
The Jazz Bar 6pm Free

Thursday 3rd
Coalfax
Bannermans Rock Club 8pm £7.50
Happy Chichester & New Killer Shoes
The Voodoo Rooms 7.30pm £8
The Revellers & Scaramanga
Cabaret Voltaire 7pm £5
Future Heroes
The Jazz Bar 11.30pm £3
Paul Gilbody & Siobhan Wilson
The Jazz Bar 9pm £5

Friday 4th
Trevino & Wasted Days
Bannermans Rock Club 8pm £5
Jamie and Shoony
The Liquid Room 7pm
The Little Kicks, King Eider &The Book Group
Wee Red Bar 7pm £5
Lorraine and The Borderlands
42 Royal Park Terrace 7pm
Let’s Say We Did, Et Tu Brute?! & Zed Penguins
Henry’s Cellar Bar 7.30pm £5

Saturday 5th
Johnny Flynn
The Pleasance 7pm £17
The Moon Kids, Huevo and The Giant, Sunset Abbey & THe Haar
Cabaret Voltaire 7.30pm £8
More Than Conquerers & A Fight You Can’t Win
Sneaky Pete’s 7pm £5
Spear Of Destiny
Electric Circus 7pm £13.50
Everything Everything
The Liquid Room 7pm £15

Sunday 6th
Sleeping With Sirens, The Summer Set, Hands Like House & The Getaway Plan
The Picturehouse 7pm £16
The Sunday Sinners
The Jazz Bar 11.30pm £3
Sister Sin, Honeycomb & Dirty Rotten Scoundrels
Bannermans Rock Club 8pm £8
The Jensen Interceptors & South
The Voodoo Rooms 7.30pm £8
Bannermans Open Mic
Bannermans Rock Club 3pm Free

Gig Listing 23rd-29th September

Gig Listings 23rd – 29th September

Hello! There is a very international flavour to the gigs in Edinburgh this week. Auld Reekie plays host to a Maltese Death Metal band (Abysmal Torment), Norwegian Punk (Honningbarna), French Indie-Pop (Melanie Pain) and intentionally absurd Ska music from the Balkans (Bobok). Incidentally, Bobok claim that some of their music is inspired by “the absence of bananas in Siberian concentration camps” – obviously a burning issue in North Eastern Europe. Furthermore, some very big fish in the music world stop by to share their talent with us. English Folkster Laura Marling, US Guitar Virtuoso Joe Bonamassa, Brit-Pop survivor Tim Burgess and Scottish Album of the Year award winner RM Hubbert are all in town this week. Some head scratching decision making and rearranging of diaries appears to be in store for all of us. Happy Gigging!

Monday 23rd

The Primitives

Electric Circus 7pm £10

Fighting Fiction

Opium 7.30pm

Coldroad, Kings Gambit & Southpaws

Bannermans Rock Club 8pm £5

Akord, Mountains Under Oceans, We came From The North & Alphasky

Sneaky Pete’s 7pm

Lach’s Antihoot Open Stage

Henry’s Cellar Bar 7.30pm Free

Tuesday 24th

Honningbarna

Electric Circus 7pm £6

Joe Bonamassa

The Edinburgh Playhouse 7pm £36-£76

Sarah Slean & Unkle Bob

The Voodoo Rooms 7.30pm £10

Violent Whispers, Lieutenant Tango & The Diversions

Whistlebinkies 8pm Free

Larsa

Leith Folk Club (Victoria House Hotel) 7.30pm £7

Wednesday 25th

Laura Marling

Usher Hall 7pm £17.50

Tim Burgess, Hatcham Social &Velveteen Saints

The Pleasance 7.30pm £15.50

Beans On Toast

The Voodoo Rooms £7.30pm £6

Hanzel Und Gretel, Deadcell & Metaltech

Bannermans Rock Club 8pm £9

Chris Finn, Tombstone & Splendid Gentlemen

Whistlebinkies 7pm Free

 

Thursday 26th

RM Hubbert, Aidan Moffat & Craig B

Electric Circus 7pm £8

Bobok

Wee Red Bar 7pm £5

Abysmal Torment, Inveracity & Neuroma

Bannermans Rock Club 8pm £10

Trace Bundy & Kat Healy

The Voodoo Rooms 7.30pm £9

Future Heroes

The Jazz Bar 11.30pm £3

Friday 27th

The Media Whores, The New Shmoo, Satellites, The Minionz, Columbia, The Signals, High Priority & Bond Jovi

The Liquid Room £5 6pm

Gerry Jablonski And The Electric Band & Main Street Blues

The Voodoo Rooms 7.30pm £8.50

Harvey Lanes, Cowboy Horrorshow & Dancing Mice

Henry’s Cellar Bar 7pm £5

AC Rid, The Omega Corridor & RJ Feathers Blues Band

Wee Red Bar 7pm £5

Billy Letford, The Wellgreen & Linden

Summerhall (The Meadows) 7pm £7

Saturday 28th

The Wynd

Henry’s Cellar Bar 7pm £5

Ben Poole

Bannermans Rock Club 8pm £8

Melanie Pain

Voodoo Rooms 7.30pm £12

Shock And Awe

Citrus Club 7pm £5

Led Astray

Electric Circus 7pm £8

Sunday 29th

John Gomm & Kat Healy

Voodoo Rooms 7.30pm £10

Spirit Kick, Rothschilde & Southpaws

Whistlebinkies 9pm Free

Cranachan

Bannermans Rock Club 3pm Free

Bedford Falls

Barony Bar 7.30pm Free

Joanna & Ged Milroy

Dalriada 3pm Free

Posted by James Scott

 

Live Review – WIRE at King Tuts Wah Wah Hut, Glasgow

King Tuts Glasgow
Wire do not reform as do other groups from the past, they reconvene. This has happened two or three times in fact since their illustrious beginnings, coinciding with the emergence of punk in the 1970’s. Three great albums were released starting with Pink Flag in 1977, quickly followed by Chairs Missing in 1978 and 154 in 1979, each wildly different from the other. If you’ve never heard these albums then the tracks below will give you a taste of their unique approach to music making.

After the release 154, Wire wrote songs which sadly never saw the light of day. This has now been corrected with the recent release of Change Becomes Us, a re-working of many of these songs which effectively would’ve been their fourth album.

At Kings Tuts tonight they showcase a handful of songs from this album including the mighty “Stealth of a Stork”, “Adore Your Island” and “Magic Bullet”. These are interspersed with tracks spanning their whole career to date from Pink Flag to 2011’s Red Barked Tree. Many of tonights songs such as the wonderful “Map Ref”, from Chairs Missing, clock in at under four minutes which demonstrate a restless energy within the band to continually push the boundaries of angular guitar pop.

Wire also included new tracks in their set due to be released on a new album in 2014, “Blogging for Jesus” and “ Flying Dutchman” which drove one member of the audience to chant for more familiar songs which Wire clearly had no intention of playing, causing Colin Newman to retort “someones only heard one Wire song”. There is no room for sentiment in Wire songs and the band don’t hang about on stage with either tuning up or exchanging pleasantries with the audience. Theirs is generation punk – existential.

Your Five A Day Feast!

Gig Listings 16th-22nd September

Monday 16th

Alistair Griffin: The York based singer-Songwriter continues his Foodbank Tour in which he donates his gig earnings to foodbanks across the UK in association with the Trussel Trust

The Outhouse 7.30pm £10

Joe Pug & Aaron Fyfe

Sneaky Pete’s 7pm £7.70

Lach’s Antihoot Open Stage

Henry’s Cellar Bar 7.30pm Free

Amy Dawson

Captains Bar 8.30pm Free

Blueswater

Earl of Marchmont 9pm Free

Tuesday 17th

Mick Hargan & Rachel Ann Weiss

Sneaky Pete’s 7pm

Stevi Zafani, Otoban & Splendid Gentlemen

Whistlebinkies 8pm Free

Knox and Ion

Usher Hall 11am £3

Sarah McQuaid

Victoria Park House Hotel 7.30pm £9

The Songwriters Cellar

Henry’s Cellar Bar 7pm Free

Wednesday 18th

The Magic Numbers: The Stodart and Gannon siblings continue to deliver indie-pop of the catchiest calibre. With six Top 40 singles and three Top 40 albums already under their belts The Magic Numbers have managed to mantain popularity without major publicity.

The Pleasance 7.30pm £15.50

The Foo Birds

Wee Red Bar 7pm £4

Brave Yesterday

Bannermans Rock Club 8pm £4

Jim Malcolm

Edinburgh Folk Club 8pm £10

Jack Badcock & Ciaran Ryan

Captains Bar 8.30pm Free

Thursday 19th

RM Hubbert, Aidan Moffat, Rick Redbeard & More

The Jam House 7pm £10

Human is Not Alone: Fat Goth, United Fruit, Hey Enemy & Vasquez

Electric Circus 7.30pm £6

Let’s Play God

Bannermans Rock Club 8pm £4

New Urban Frontier, Makak & Wavy Blue

Henry’s Cellar Bar 8pm £5

Mr McFall’s Chamber

The Liquid Room 7pm £14

Friday 20th

Caravan Club, Black Riot Valves, The Rhemedies & The Litigators

Sneaky Pete’s 7pm £6

Big Fat Panda & Post Oragasmic Sunshine Band

Bannermans Rock Club 8pm £5

Dapitz, Subvision, The Phlegm &Last Stand

Henry’s Cellar Bar 7pm £5

Full Moon Freaks, The Pumpin Jehsofatz & The Bloodslugs

Wee Red Bar 7pm £5

The Wave Pictures & Miracle Strip

The Pleasance 8pm £7

Saturday 21st

Boyce Avenue

The Liquid Room 7pm £25

Cullan, Donny Willow, Miasma & The Saccharines

Sneaky Pete’s 7pm £5

Exit Calm & Delta Machine

Electric Circus 7pm £7

Mechanical Arms, Vertebrea & These Fading Polaroids

Cabaret Voltaire 7pm £5

Stuart Davis

Bannermans Rock Club 8pm £7

Sunday 22nd

65daysofstatic & Sleepmakeswaves: Since releasing their debut album, The Fall of Math, to critical acclaim in 2004, 65daysofstatic have been peculiarly under the radar. They play The Liquid Room as part of a small UK Tour to promote their fifth studio album Wild Light.

The Liquid Room 7pm £13.50

Royal Southern Brotherhood

The Caves 7pm £17.50

Sea Bass Kid & Macpolvo

Whistlebinkies 9.30pm Free

Absent Friends

Finnegans Wake 10pm Free

Fintan Hunt & Ray Considine

Malones 5pm Free

Posted by James Scott

Linkylea Festival 2013 – Review

Linkylee LogoWell… I am not going to write about everything I did, rather I am going to write about what I can remember. Linkylea is a small boutique festival situated for the first time this year in Coulstoun Estate, near Haddington. It has been running for about nine years and it’s a charity festival with all the profits going to disadvantaged children and young adults in Gwalior, India – so far it has raised around £35000.

Its run from Friday teatime till the wee small hours, and Saturday all day till about 3am. You can camp from Friday till Sunday morning, or drop in fresh and clean for Saturday when the festival is in full swing. On site there are two stages for bands, a dance tent and several other activities and stalls for adults and kids. I could only make it for a couple of hours on Friday night which was a real shame, but I did catch Jamie & Shoony who were fantastic. They are Radio Forth’s “one to watch” of 2012, and you can see why as they have great stage presence and some really catchy tunes. I caught up with “&” from Jamie & Shoony, who is drummer Richard Neil, and hopefully Feast will be doing some recording with these guys soon.

Shooky

 

Later on I had a wander around and caught up with a few of the bands playing on Friday and Saturday and most of them were camping despite the torrential rain on Friday night. I also popped into the dance tent and caught up with the Chappel Perilous Sound System crew who have had a busy summer supplying their humungous sound system for Linkylea, Audiosoup and Glastonbury. I was really disappointed not to the catch Battle of the Zoo later but they were on well past my bedtime. I heard they had an absolute blinder of a set.

I arrived on Saturday to sunshine and I managed to stay for about 7 hours and catch so much more that Friday. I saw a few songs by Folk Rag who had some beautifully crafted songs with truly lovely vocals and harmonies from Pete and Lisalot. I chatted to David from the band and again we are looking forward to working with these guys in the future. I also had the pleasure of bumping into promoter Steven Mackay who is always great company and always involved in looking for new music. He introduced me to Georgia Gordon who has a wonderful voice and played a sweet set .If you are a sucker for singer/songwriters, Georgia is very good indeed. I couldn’t be everywhere at once and there were just too many musicians I missed. Shuna Cook got great feedback when I asked around and I look forward to hear more of her stuff when it comes out – she could be one to watch.

Feast had brought a couple of bands to the festival and I cannot over-emphasize how good they both were. When Man of Moon played they created such a spell on the audience that by the end there was a crowd chant of their name. Mike and Chris are such talented song writers and musicians and Feast is really looking forward to working with them on a couple of videos and their debut E.P. which should be coming out early next year.

MOM 4

 

Redolent rather honourably swapped sets with Man of Moon due to Chris having to split early.  Three of the band had camped on Wet Friday but this had not dampened their spirits. By the time they came on at 7pm, they hit the ground running. I have seen them about three times and they have only played about 20 gigs. Even still, they are getting better each time. Still a wee bit shy onstage but with such great sounding tracks and skill they just keep getting better and better. I know I am a sucker for new music with strong vocals and layers of talent because that what Redolent have.  The front of house mix by Brian Jones (an ex-student of Edinburgh College) was the best I have heard from these guys, and it made all their songs sound magnificent.

RED 51

 

There were so many other highlights from Linkylea but I am sorry to say I missed the Stagger Rats, the Merrylees and the Victorian Trouts which was a real shame. You can never catch all the bands you want when you go to a festival.

I would like to thank so many people for making Linklylea so brawsome; Bonnie , Callum, Granny Radge, and many more,  have wokered so hard to built such a cool festival.

I would however like to give special thanks to all the students and ex-students from Edinburgh College who did such a good job running the sound for both tents, playing on stage, and photographing the whole thing. You know who you are and you were all great.

I salute you all and look forward to keeping on working together. Well done.ß

Edinburgh Gig Listings 9th-15th September

Monday 9th

Lach’s Antihoot Open Stage
Henry’s Cellar Bar 7.30pm Free
Ross Arthur
Bannermans Rock Club 8pm £4
Ewan Forfar
Captain’s Bar 8.30pm Free
Graeme E. Pearson
Black Bull 9pm Free
Ken Johnston
White Hart Inn 9pm Free

Tuesday 10th

The View, OK Social Club & Radio 1’s Ally McCrae: Mercury Nominated The View look to cement their place in the hearts of a new generation of indie music fans at this year’s Freshers week. Expect the usual catchy songs and guitar riffs blended with onstage hijinks. Support provided by Edinburgh’s up and coming OK Social Club with the event hosted by BBC Radio’s Ally McCrae.
Potterow Venue 8pm £10

Greg Kristine, The Rich & The Diversions
Whistlebinkies 8pm
Craig Finnie & Friends
The Blind Poet 9pm Free
Declan Hegarty
Black Bull 9pm Free
Martina Cannon
Ale House 9.30pm Free

Wednesday 11th

Adrian Boyle, The Litigators & Matt Stockl: Having built up a cult following in his native Ireland, Adrian Boyle makes his live UK Debut. The Litigators deliver a modern take on 60s Blues/Rock with Scottish swagger and Matt Stockl continues to charm his audiences with soulful and somewhat strange musical outpourings.
Bannermans Rock Club 8pm £5

Stu Larsen & Natsuki Kurai
The Caves 7pm £7.95
Chris Finn, Clash Livi Rockers & Splendid Gentlemen
Whistlebinkies 7pm
Second Hand
Malones 10pm Free
Andy McCabe
Mitre 9.30pm Free

Thursday 12th

The Deep Red Sky, Al Shields & The Blind Dog
The Voodoo Rooms 7.30pm £5
Ryan Morcombe, Big Tuna & Glamour and the Baybes
Whistlebinkies 7pm Free
The Scams, King Lizard, Fuzz Drivers & Pyscho Sunday
Bannermans Rock Club 7pm £6
Justin Currie
The Queens Hall 7pm £20
Freshers week Student Band Night
Teviot, Underground 8pm Free

Friday 13th

Old Earth, Hiva Oa & Mat Riviere: This trio of acts delivers low key experimental electronica/indie that falls somewhere in the bracket between Spiritualized and Jónsi Þór Birgisson.
Henry’s Cellar Bar 7pm

Stubborn Heart
Sneaky Pete’s 7pm £6
Bluesoul, Joy & Superhouse
Whistlebinkies 7pm £4
Propaganda Rock n’ Roll Party
The Liquid Rooms 10.30pm
Murray Sim, Aimee Russell & Megan Swanson
Cabaret Voltaire 7pm £5

Saturday 14th

The Rhemedies & Support
The Citrus Club 7pm £8
Adam Stafford, Thank You So Nice & Et Tu Brute???
The Voodoo Rooms 7.30pm £6
Warrior Soul, Ritual Spirit, I.C.O.N &Paper Beats Rock
Bannermans Rock Club 8pm £11
Ged Hanley Trio, Safehouse & U Know How
Whistlebinkies 7pm
The Martyn Bennett Prize Concert
The Queen’s Hall 8pm £15

Sunday 15th

Pumajaw, Candythief & Jo Foster (Single Launch Party)
The Voodoo Rooms 7.30pm Free
The Falling Rain, Red Command & Ale Shores
Sneaky Pete’s 7pm £5
The Russ Tippins Band
Bannermans Rock Club 8pm £8
Richt Hoat Chillis & Bannockburn
Whistlebinkies 9.30pm Free
We’re Not Iguanas
Blind Poet 10pm Free

Posted by James Scott

Interview – Julian Ruppel, Sound Technician

Blazing lights, the stamping of feet, the clapping of hands, the music that gives you Goosebumps. The crowd fixated on the band taking the stage. But what about the people that make it happen?  Leah Curtis at Feast had a chat with Julian Ruppel, a young sound technician from Germany, about what it’s like to work in the job.
 
1. Hi Julian! A lot of people know you as the sound technician for the Stuttgart Metalcore band “We Set Our Dreams”. How did this come about?
 
Hi Leah! Yes, you’re right. I met the boys at a gig that they were playing, and where I was booked to do the live sound. Something sparked between us and since then I’ve been on the road with them and did the sound for them at their EP release show in March.
 
2. Wow! You went on tour with the boys when they released that EP (Humanity). How was it for you?
 

I had a great time with the boys. During the tour, the relationship between us changed from job to friendship. I enjoy being on the road with them. It was nice to see that the time they put into “Humanity” really paid off, it’s a great EP with great songs.
 
3. You created your own Events Company (Stay True), which came about whilst you were still doing an apprenticeship and working part time at a venue. Was it hard to juggle all of these things at once?
It was alright. “Stay True” is primarily a project to be able to show what I can do, to apply myself as a sound technician, but also to be able to put on shows that aren’t too expensive, but still have an amazing line-up. But I spent a lot of my free time on it, so it wasn’t too hard to do everything.
 
4. How long have you been doing this kind of thing? What made you want to get into the job?
 

I’ve been doing it for nine years now. Back when I first started it was the technical side and my interest n music that got me into it. I don’t play an instrument, so I started on the mixing desk and found out that I enjoyed it.
 
5. Sounds great! Is it sometimes difficult to work with bands or are there any arguments with members of the gig audience?
 
It’s only difficult when the bands get it into their heads that what the sound guy is saying means nothing and then don’t listen to you. That’s where there’s sometimes an argument. I never really get into arguments with members of the audience, most of the time they just complain about how loud it is (and these are the people who are standing right next to the PA, so it’s no wonder) or they’re just drunk and endanger the equipment with drinks.
 
6. One last question. Do you have any advice for any budding sound technicians?
 
Don’t let anyone tell you how to work. Everyone has their own way and “style” of how the do it.
 
Thank you for your time Julian! I wish you all the best and good luck!
No problem! Was a pleasure and thank you!
 

Posted by Leah Curtis

T in the Park

Feast put their party hats on and headed up to Sunday’s T in The Park, to celebrate the 20th birthday of the Balado behemoth which baked in glorious sunshine. There was a definite fiesta to be had!

The festival has come under a lot of criticism for it’s recent line up with fans blasting the increasing commercial and X- factor pop contingent, however there were some great bands playing, and an array of fantastic new Scottish talent was showcased over the weekend.

Deap Vally had an early start, looking like a rock n roll, trailer version of Thelma & Louise, they played their take on White Stripes stripped back, blues rock riffage, with tracks such as Walk of Shame and Baby I Call Hell were greeted by loud hollers from the hungover crowd.
On the main stage Earth, Wind and Fire got the crowd dancing to ‘Boogie Wonderland’ and several disco hits, some would say a strange booking, but people ran from all directions to dance in the dusty sunshine disco.

We popped by to see The 1975, to be met with a heaving tent and from what we saw ‘Chocolate’, The 1975 look to be another band who could do well once their debut album drops.
Disclosure could easily be dismissed as remashed deep house, however the brothers delivered a strong set of their own material, which the young crowd sung back with loud exuberance. Tracks such as ‘White Noise’ in which Aluna of AlunaGeorge dropped by to was lapped up with wild abandon.

The ascendant of Chvrches over the past year has been quite remarkable, and one that looks set to continue with a dramatic and energetic performance, showcasing from their forthcoming electro synth pop debut album. The next big Scottish export for sure.

Foals are another band who look likely to soon be stepping up the headline big league, but unfortunately the crowd seemed largely uninterested with the band’s soaring angular indie, and preferred to clap politely and wait for David Guetta…

Dundee’s Fat Goth also put in a notable performance , drawing a large crowd to the T Break stage. A fast rock band with slithers of metal, delivering loud, raw riffs. The trio powered through tracks from their debut Stud. Energetic and visceral, Fat Goth should be the next Dundee band on everyone’s lips.

Stand out performance of the day was New Yoik’s juggernaut Yeah Yeah Yeah’s who stormed through their headline set at the King Tut’s tent with Karen O delivering a electrifying performance as a red Majorette minx.

Launching straight into Sacrilege and Gold Lion it was intense spiky introduction, the YYY’s stamping their arrival and leaving the indie kids in a heaving, sweaty mess. The band trail blazed through their back catalogue with Cold Light, Heads Will Roll and Miles Away all receiving a fevered welcome.

Ending with Zero and returning on stage with THAT jacket, a touching Maps and a snarling finale of Date with the Night, the YYY’s delivered a blistering set full of proper rock n roll, which the heaving crowd lapped up, and ended with Karen O shoving the mic down her pants. Exhilarating.

That was it for the day, as Feast made their way through the site, bodies and bottles strewn from the aftermath of the four-day bender, the booming voice over the tannoy announcing next year’s ticket sales, just moments after the fireworks overhead finished. Party overkill Mr. Ellis, and we left wondering if the thousands left would accept their ‘invite’ to next year’s party?

Live review, Young Fathers, Brighton Dome Studio Theatre.

photo (8)Young Fathers were on thunderous form when we walked in on the second song of their first Great Escape set. Since I last heard them a couple of years ago these four guys from Edinburgh have taken on a darker sound but this makes their performance all the more compelling and the energy that they attacked this gig with was so gobsmacking that no other artist we saw at the Great Escape festival over the three days came close to this sort of intensity. Tribal beats, super tight rapping, sparkling almost boy band-like harmonies and powerful lead vocals made this set genuinely exciting and even unexpectedly moving.

Pirate Sons – E.P Lauch:223U

PS SmallIf you look at the picture that come with press pack the untrained eye can spot a few tell tall signs that the band like to party. Beer in hand, an emptied glass on the floor, a discreet hip flask. All the band are smoking and I think one of them might be wearing a fur coat with not much else on. I am not sure if this is a pre-party shot are this is how the guys look after a 24 hour bender, cause I know Pirate Sons can play hard. I think they can party hard as well.

They have built up a solid reputation since they formed in 2012 and although they have had a few changes in line up they are settled with the current team of Guitarist and Vocalist Ceallaigh Corbishley, who moved over from New Zealand in October 2011, Drummer Angus Ross joined in january 2012, and new addition Bass player Tom Diaz who joined Pirate Sons after living with the other guys for 6 months in a flat they shared..

Pirate Sons image

 

This flat is the inspiration for their E.P and with songs like Dirty Dirty Rascals I can only shudder to think of the kind of crazy s**t they got up in their time. The E.P. is jammed packed with rock n’ roll tracks inspired by the likes of the Blacks Keys, Iggy Pop and the White Strips and with the songs being recorded on 2″ tape and Chambers Studio, and the restriction of 24 tracks (compared to the unlimited tracks available in the digital age), has helped the band print a tight sounding record. They are already making a name for themselves north of the border and moving in the same circles as the likes of Glasvegas and Wet Nuns, Pirate Sons are serious rock n’ roll players with an attitude to match.

Links:

Bandcamp: http://piratesons.bandcamp.com

Facebook: www.facebook.com/piratesons

Soundcloud: www.soundcloud.com/piratesons

YouTube: http://youtube.com/piratesons

End of Neil – Crossing the river in my sleep

End Of NeilAcoustic/Folk singer songwriter End of Neil stopped in at Edinburgh College’s SSL studio’s lately to record his track ‘Crossing the river in my sleep’ and shoot a session video with Edinburgh Undersound.

The highly talented Stirling based artist is a prolific gigger, usually a date every week or so in his home town or Edinburgh. Check his diary out; he has dates up until the end of December so I’m sure you can catch him at some point! When playing live he has a stripped back set usually, but for this session Neil played all the instruments, drums and vocal parts.

After initially hearing Neil’s music I was hooked, he has a natural ability to write clever, catchy songs with solid tight instrumentation behind him. Be sure to check out his latest work ‘My Games’, it’s an awesome piece of work.

For the release there will be three tracks and a Session video (shot by UndersoundTV).  There will be the original song, an arrangement with added Piano/Cello overdubs and a track with the addition of Scottish emcee ‘TF’ currently working with Undersound Records.  Neil has created some unique, beautiful artwork specifically for the single release also.

Neil is very creative, naturally talented musician who was great to work with. Be sure to check out his page for the upcoming release.

Check out his work @

http://endofneil.bandcamp.com + http://soundcloud.com/endofneil

Undersound Sessions at www.youtube.com/undersoundtelevision

Check TF’s debut EP out at www.undersound-records.bandcamp.com

Tracks recorded, Mixed and Mastered by James Bowie + Darren Knox (Edinburgh College)

TF feature Track mixed and mastered by Undersound Records.

Live Review – Fatherson @ Dome Studio Theatre and the Prince Albert

IMG_1024Glad to have caught Fatherson at TGE. Saw them at the Dome Theatre in the afternoon and then the more intimate Prince Albert at night. Different size venues can affect the power and effect of a song meaning that some bands are often only suited to one type/size of venue. However, no such problems for Fatherson. The smaller venue adds more intensity to their songs whilst the larger venue allows more space to appreciate the dynamics and the emotional impact of their set. Their power and intensity remind me of the wonderful Swervedriver and lyrically I’m reminded of the writing of Iain Banks.

Live Review – Blue Hawaii @ The Old Ship Paganini Ballroom

IMG_1024 Love this proper old ballroom, more suited to Bach recitals but used today by Hype Machine to promote Blue Hawaii amongst others. Best show so far after Young Fathers. Blue Hawaii combine emotional lyrical content,looping vocals and deep Detroit style techno with a European dance aesthetic. Like combining Deepchord with Grimes. Really groovy.
image

Live Review – Thumpers @ Komedia Downstairs, The Great Escape

IMG_1024 Sometimes its best to just walk in on a band with no preconceived ideas about what they look or sound like. And so we happened upon Thumpers. Funny how a band can lift your spirits whilst another band can leave you despondent. We approached Komedia with dampened spirits but Thumpers picked us right back up with their tight vibrant groove mixed with catchy five-part harmonies. A brilliant drummer almost navigated each songs path, invigorating and infectious. Great. Komedia Downstairs is a great venue and the best at TGE.

Live Review-The Elwins@The Blind Tiger, Great Escape.

IMG_1024 First band to see @ The Great Escape are the vibrant and uplifting Elwins. Thursday afternoon and the band and audience are up for this Toronto band’s angular take on pop. A bit like Vampire Weekend meets Orange Juice. Great start to the festival. Will look out for them when they come back in October.

Live Review: The Dark Jokes+Big Fat Panda+ Victorian Trout Conspiracy .

Liquid Rooms LogoI arrived during the opening set with a confused look of wonder on my face. The dark stage was lit up by a few spotlights, setting an ominous atmosphere. My ears were alerted to the ambient instrumentation of the opening act delivered by the shaking bass vibes that shot up my spine. I had previously heard of the Dark Jokes but until now was unfamiliar with their sound, maybe even guilty of judging a book by its cover and pegging a band because of the connotations the name had. I was pleasantly surprised to find that they weren’t what I had bargained for but exceeded all expectations I had previously.

The instrumentation they used really separates this band’s sound from most bands in the local scene. Their sound is truly captivating; it is wide and ambient with a real energy and depth but at time’s can be darker and heavier whilst maintaining the elements that are synonymous with their ability to engage with their audience. The string section rolls off the back of the soft and beautifully delivered vocal melodies.  This opens up the sound of the band’s diversity gripping the attention of the listener and forcing them to take notice, something I felt as soon as I arrived at the gig.

D J 2

 

The band played to a fairly empty room however they were able to fill out the fallow space with their powerful sound, so much so that I was unaware of the crowd gathering throughout the set.  I still had no idea who this band were and felt hypnotised by their energy.  They had a dark stage presence which fits with the sound and really sparked my interest. So much so that I had to ask a random person next to me; “who is this band?”, I was met with a sense  of agreeable surprise.  The penny just dropped. In a way, I was regretting not listening to this band before now but also felt a stronger connection with them as I first experienced them without any pre-existing judgements or expectations, which may have influenced my decision on them.

D P 1

Next came the cheers of; “BIG FAT PANDA, BIG FAT PANDA!!” as the Ska outfit took to the stage. I have always been sceptical when it comes to traditional Ska bands as a whole really, it’s something I feel has been done for a long time, there’s lots of similar bands out there and in my opinion they all stick to a similar structure. Big Fat Panda however are at the top of their game and delivered a wild, upbeat set to a growing crowd in The Liquid Rooms, they put on a fantastic show. Although, sticking to the traditional sound of Ska I think the tightness and stage presence of the band make them stand out as THE Ska band to take notice of in the city. Comprising of a brass, keys, guitars and a larger than life lead vocal… in all manners! This band will, without a doubt, get you moving.

Having watched the second act’s full set I felt VTC would have to really up the game to follow such an energetic, tight support act. The emotions on stage were visually strong; one thing that stood out to me was the bands enjoyment whilst playing to the crowd. They looked like they were having just as much fun as the fans, charming the mob with their set.

The venue filled out for headliners The Victorian Trout Conspiracy, there was ten band members in total! It was clear who the fans had come to see this evening. I had never before experienced The Trout’s; the reputation the band has in the city was enough to excite me for their performance.

You cannot put this band into a category, what if a friend asks; “What kind of music is it?” You have two choices; find a new friend or get into a ten minute discussion on how a band with so many members and varying influences can be pinned down by one genre. There is a clear heavy Ska influence; however, this is not a straight up Ska band. The complex song structures are reminiscent of some Punk, Rock and even Surf music. They use various melodies within one track, different sections that other bands may use to write various compositions, giving me the strong impression of musical dexterity within the collective. There are elements of Reggae and Blues in places you just would not expect. One attribute to the band I can highlight is the unbelievable crowd participation they have whilst on stage. The Trout’s had the crowd energetically thriving from start to finish mouthing lyrics to favourites ‘Cider bam’ and ‘Super Duper Electric Scooter’.

VTC

After a storming set the band returned to the stage for a well-deserved encore playing a medley of ‘Tarantula’, ‘Slam’ and ‘Propane Nightmare’s by Pendulum. The place literally went off. The energy in the room was elevated back up to a higher level than before as the crowd went wild for one last dance.

As the lights came on and the crowd dispersed it was clear that all these different people from various walks of life were mutually united under one roof to experience the captivating sound of The Victorian Trout Conspiracy.

Do not go and see this band… Don’t do it! Unless you want to find yourself totally obsessed, scouring the net for the next month for material and upcoming gig dates! Once you have experienced a live show from the VTC you may find yourself at a loss next time you find yourself at a local venue. Unless they’re on the bill of course!

Mon the Trouts’

Edinburgh Undersound. X

“Tonights The Night”

Feast-Poster-Final

Yes as the great Neil Young said, tonights the night as we host an extravaganza of musical delights as 7 new labels launch their debut singles from their first artists. Chaos may ensue but hopefully everything will go to plan or thereabouts (fingers crossed). Should be a great night.

Presenting:
The Cosmonauts with their energetic guitar riffs, atmospheric cello and lyrics that resonate, bringing the passion and excitement of a bygone era bang up to date with a heart pounding crash.

The Well Rested - music made by Oliver Ninnis, James Albon and Tim Davey with a mic tied to a cymbal stand by a sock.

Hotel India and their pop/rock/psychedelia/indie groove

Onetzu – after his childhood, raised by wolves and fundamentalist protestants in the wilderness, Onetzu arrived in Edinburgh, made himself a microphone out of tin cans, old shoes and bits of discarded furniture. He’s never been the same since – rapper’s delight!

The Maybes - a guitar based band from the South Side of Glasgow

Silvertongue – 22 year old emcee, born in the Highlands. Now lives in Edinburgh.

Panda Trap - Alternative rock band from Perth

See you at the bar for a few shandys!!

Live Review Pere Ubu at Mono, Glasgow

Mono Glasgow

35 years ago Pere Ubu released a truly great album, The Modern Dance and were hailed as one of the leading art rock bands. 2013 sees the release of their 17th studio album, The Lady from Shanghai and the UK tour to promote the album brings the band and FEAST to Mono in Glasgow. Bandleader David Thomas is in playful mood tonight entertaining the audience with a monologue of the bands extensive touring plans which includes ’17 nights at Wembley Arena’!
Half the set tonight is taken from the latest album which Thomas has described as “dance music, fixed.” Indeed there is a four-to-the-floor feel to some of the tracks such as “Thanks” which takes off from Anita Ward’s “Ring My Bell” and “Free White”. The set kicks off in a similar manner with “Love Love Love” from arguably one of their best albums, Cloudland. The band have always subverted and played around with the concepts of rock’n’roll and this is evident tonight in the half dozen songs they play from their back catalogue including great renditions of “The Modern Dance” and “Misery Goats”.
Thomas’ unique charisma and satiric wit are intact and he is in rare form throughout, just sounding like he’s having a great old time and it’s good to witness the band again, still magical, cogent and coherent .

Victorian Trout Conspiracy: E.P Launch

VTC ThumbnailI think I’m busy. I mean I got three kids, a full time job, and I write this stuff in between. Don’t worry, I not soul searching its that I just got off the phone with Phil from the Victorian Trout Conspiracy and he’s a busy man. If you haven’t heard of them, you will no doubt be wondering about their name. WTF the VTC?

 

I prefer to think it has hidden meaning but Phil said the name sort of came to him after walking up Leith Walk. The power of Leith! Born from several Edinburgh bands, the main members Phil Ramsey, Fraser Fulton, Rhuaridh Turner and Calum Mason expanded to the whopping 10 piece they are today. Sometimes they play as a duo, sometimes a five piece, and sometimes the mighty deca-bonus-band-ten-piece. Since March 2012, when they got together, they have so far have played over 150 shows (and still racking em up) all over Scotland including Edinburgh’s HMV Picture House and Glasgow’s QMU, also not forgetting having already had multiple SELL OUT gigs here in their home town of Edinburgh.

After seeing them on a number of occasions, I can definitely say that this has made them a very, very, tight live band. Their gigs are real events and the last one at the Annexe had a free after-show party where all the audience where invited. That’s a band who knows how to look after the fans, give them value for money, and give them a night to remember.

 

VTC Ticket

 

Next week on the 2nd they play Edinburgh’s excellent Liquid Rooms. Promoting their new EP (recorded with Feast’s help, fact fans) which was engineered and produced by Jim White, it’s a 4 track that showcases Trouts’ sound; big, bold, catchy, energetic, and full of life. These guys are serious about what they do as the gig also launches their merchandising range. It’s time to buy your VTC t-shirts.

 
Here is a slice of what’s coming up for the Trouts in May alone:
2nd May Liquid Room, Edinburgh
10th May at Box, Glasgow
17th May, Brixton Hootananny, London
18th May, Mau Mau, London

 
In the summer they are playing a mammoth 11 festivals from the north of England and throughout Scotland. They have a long term ambition to touring America and with this much drive you feel like anything is possible for the Victorian Trout Conspiracy. Told you they were busy.

Live Review- Furrow, Henry’s Cellar Bar

Henrys LogoThey practice in a caravan in a field apparently. Despite the rural sounding name (and practice room), Shropshire based band Furrows are a long way from the folky, pastoral vibes you might expect from such surroundings. To describe their music I’m going to refer to the talent spotting checklist I had made up especially for the evening:

Number 1- Drummer should thwack the floor tom like he is trying to dispatch a wild hare to the great carrot field in the sky with a single swipe of his drumstick.

Number 2- Drummer should sing as well as playing kit. Actually, ideally should sound like Mark E Smith doing an impression of Karen Carpenter singing ‘Blue Monday’.

Number 3- Must be a duo featuring only bass drums & vocals. Absolutely no six stringed instruments, trumpets or keyboards.

Furrow spookily ticked all of the above boxes.  I also liked the way they often opted not to finish songs together at the same time- very post-modern. All in all a very enjoyable night organised by Song, by Toad, with Glasgow’s North American War also on great form. In Henry’s Cellar Bar North American War’s live sound perhaps inevitably lost a bit of the subtlety of their recordings but instead came across more like a lost treasure from CBGBs.
 

Live Review – Euan Weddell & Ded Rabbit

Henrys Logo

Sometimes it’s a real honour seeing a live band in a small venue that delivers a great sound and more often that not Henry’s Cellar Bar on Morrison Street is one of those venues. Most of the engineers that work there get a fantastic sound from a wide selection of bands in a venue that is not really designed for live sound. It’s no mean feat.

Arriving late, I caught about four tracks from Euan Weddell, and boy, did I love them. One vocal and electric guitar all delivered in a choppy punk feel. At times I though I was listening to Ivor Cuttler’s long lost son. Euan has a wonderful mix of funny, raw lyrics and music shown mostly clearly on his track “Awkward”. I didn’t know if I should be laughing so much at his lyrics about his inabilty to talk to girls, or if I should just give him a wee pat on the back and tell him it’s all going to be alright when he gets older. His between track banter was just as good as well. Golden.

By the time Ded Rabbit took stage, Henry’s seemed stacked to the rafters and after they struck their first chord you could see why. Most bands would bite there own hands off to have a couple of catchy tunes like these guys. If you add their great stage presence, then you know you are watching a band that could go very far. It’s no wonder that they are playing Sound City @ Liverpool.  There were just so many stand-out tunes  that got the crowd jumping.  ”Down and Out” sounds great live – I am looking forward to it being released as their single. Sometimes, everything works together and you could see why the band invited the audience on stage for their last track; everyone was involved in making this a great gig. At the risk of repeating myself – check them out!

POST launch debut album

POST are a band we’ve been following for a while and having heard their contribution to the Mao Disney compilation from label We Can Still Picnic and a great session on 6music’s Marc Riley show, it’s good to be able to mention the launch of their debut album at Nice n Sleazy’s on Friday April 26th. Looking forward to this.

POST album launch

Live Review – Johnny Marr, ABC Glasgow

Johnny MarrThe ABC Glasgow is packed tonight and the crowd are in fine form chanting “JOHNNY, JOHNNY, JOHNNY F***ING MARR!” Rising to a crescendo, the man himself takes the stage with his band for his first solo tour as a frontman proper, following the recent release of his solo debut album, The Messenger . “My mum won’t like that, but I do” retorts Marr and it’s clear he’s in the mood to enjoy this show as he launches into the lead track from the new album, “The Right Thing Right” quickly followed by one of many Smiths classics played tonight, “Stop Me If You Think You’ve Heard This One Before”. This receives rapturous applause from the audience.

All songs from the new album, bar one, are aired tonight which is good as for the most part it is a strong collection of songs, and in the case of New Town Velocity, up there with any of his earlier classic work with The Smiths. Halfway in and another great Smiths track, the raucous and evocative “London” (the B-Side of Shoplifters Of The World Unite) is brought back to life. This emphasizes one of the main points about The Smiths, a classic singles band, that to them, every detail from artwork, to how the band were mentioned on the sleeves, B-Sides mattered enormously. The fact that one of their greatest songs, “How Soon Is Now?” began life as a flip-side is testament to the effort that they put into each and every detail of their career.

The band encore with a cover of a cover, The Clash’s definitive version of “I Fought The Law” followed by “Getting Away With It” from Electronic, the band Marr formed with New Order’s Bernard Sumner in the late 1980s. The best however is saved to last as Marr and his band deliver a beautiful rendition of “How Soon Is Now?” and end on the brilliant “There Is A Light That Never Goes Out” conveying wonderfully the feelings of longing and escape that encapsulated so many songs by The Smiths.

Live Review – Stu Larsen @ The Caves in Edinburgh

Caves Logo for FeastAs I make the brisk walk across Edinburgh’s city centre towards The Caves I am cold, my legs tired and I am regretting not getting the bus. However my self-loathing is put massively into perspective when I consider whom I am about to see. Stu Larsen gave up his humble nine to five bank job in Queensland, Australia three years ago to pursue a life on road. He has travelled across the globe venturing to such places as far afield as Japan, New Zealand, Australia, Europe and thankfully Britain. This must seem like your average jet set tour plan but consider that he has done this as an unsigned artist and most of his travels are done in his self-driven van.

The gig kicks off with the warm, country fuelled music of Andrew Mill and The Stolen Pirates. The mix of banjo, guitar, fiddle and his rich voice really set the scene for the evening, creating a welcome atmosphere that the crowd loved. He did however take a break mid-set to allow highland poet Donald Ker to give the audience some of his favorite rhyming tales. This would be one of their last gigs before Andrew and Donald set off on a tour of the southern states of America.Up next is Esther Swift a singer songwriter with a difference; you might expect she would have an acoustic guitar, piano maybe even a ukulele. Nope, a full sized harp is her instrument of choice. A classically trained musician with a beautiful voice pulls the gig goers in with her subtle melodies.

Stu Larsen takes to the stage and as he kicks into his first song it becomes apparent that his nomad lifestyle is clearly his greatest muse. A personal favourite of mine being San Francisco a tale of travelling north listening to music and being on an adventure. He mixes his music with tales of the road that are just as intriguing as the music and the man himself. He takes note of his surroundings in the historical caves, a perfect backdrop to his music.

Larsen also throws in a few treats for the audience by inviting Esther back up on stage for a few numbers and the rest of the support up to sing along with the gigs last song. All in all a great performance from Stu Larsen complimented by the hand picked support acts.

Live Review – Redolent @ Cabaret Voltaire in Edinburgh

Cabaret Voltaire ScrabbledBeing Redolent’s debut gig this was the first time I, or anyone else for that matter, had seen them perform in a live venue. However, you would be mistaken for thinking that they have been performing together on stage for months as they turned in a solid and thoroughly entertaining performance.

Taking place in one of Edinburgh’s best known and loved venues, Cabaret Voltaire provided an intimate and not too intimidating arena for the band to debut their tracks to the audience.

Great vocals from the singer mixed well with their blend of intricate guitar picking and interesting and changing rhythms. A mix of solid bass playing and driving drums provided a great platform for the guitars to shine through and take centre stage on the tracks. The bands use of dynamics created interesting changes in the songs and kept the audience on their toes.Blog Stage Image

Full of nervous energy at the beginning, the band seemed to relax into the gig very quickly and throughout the show they had a great command of the stage. They did not just play through their set but gave a performance that was entertaining, well executed and most importantly full of good songs.  Due to a couple of small technical difficulties the sound was a little muddy at times, although this was nothing major and did not take away from the performance of the band.

All in all Redolent’s debut gig was a triumph, with the band showing great potential and promise for the future, whilst looking like a band that has already worked out how to perform well with each other.

Have a listen to the demo of their track “Useless”. Its another great tune which has, for some reason,  a picture of a redhead lying on the grass to go with it. Go figure!.

Live Review: Of Monsters and Men @ the O2 in Glasgow

Okay…so the big question about Of Monsters and Men ‘s gig at the O2 is not ‘how did this band having only formed in 2010 and having  released only one album have to get this gig moved up from Oran Mor to the sold out O2?’  Nor is it ‘how does the tiny Icelandic community (only 320,000 of them) keep producing these amazing bands with such individual sounds?’.   Nor is it ‘how can this new band have fans from every age group, social class, colour from young hipsters to old folkies;  from 12 year olds to guys in tracksuits and bad bad haircuts?’

No. The real question is – just who is having the most fun, us or the band on stage?

Because they were having the time of their lives.

As the first chords were struck and harmonies sung, the band had us totally in their hands and we were in very, very, safe hands.  Live, they managed to really rock out and then rein it in for the soft lullabies and handle each as if they had been doing this for decades.  They managed to keep the harmonies and warmth of the songs whilst still bringing them alive on the stage.  This was far from simply hearing an album played live, this was a band giving a new expansion to each and every song.

And what songs! From the hit single Little Talks to the sweet ballad Sloom, every song was welcomed and luxuriated in by the fans.  Seen live, you realise just how sing-a- long most of their tunes are.   These are the songs that your neighbours will learn to love as you drunkenly sing them, loud and proud at 3.00am of a Friday night.

They have been winning plaudits all over Europe and the US with their festival tours, and by end of the gig, every one left the O2 with a warm glow. It was just like those old ads for Ready Brek (kids- go ask your dad)

If you weren’t there? You probably should’ve been.

Live Review – Ded Rabbit @ the Jazz Bar in Edinburgh

Ded Rabbit Live @ Jazz BarFeast went along to Chambers Street to see Ded Rabbit, who are an indie rock type of band. They have the usual set-up of guitars, bass and drums but introduce sax into various songs which adds a bit of spontaneity to their approach. The tunes are infectious and really catchy without being too polished or in the least bit predictable, pushing and pulling in various directions but never seem to overstay their welcome.

They put a smile on my face and are they are at ease about how they deliver their songs.Tonight amongst other songs they play tracks from last year’s ‘Ice Cream’ EP which is great and well worth searching out. They have an ability to combine several influences whether it be funk, jazz, indie, prog and somehow bring them together to produce something original that feels totally natural but has an intensity and excitement which is infectious. Given this, the packed audience really warms to the band and many, including me, have become fans of Ded Rabbit.

See them for yourself when they play Henry’s Cellar Bar on Friday 15th March.

Studio Session: Pirate Sons

Pirate Sons at Edinburgh College

Garage rock outfit Pirate Sons dropped by the Edinburgh College studios recently to record a few tracks, and they shot a session video with EdinburghUndersound.

Originally formed in New Zealand by front man Ceallaigh Corbishley. Pirate Sons began as a two piece ‘lets bang on stuff and see how it sounds band’ not really taking their musical venture that seriously. After the addition of a bass player who couldn’t (at the time) play bass, the band were now ready to take there musical careers to the next level and progress as a band.

A move across the pond to Scotland’s capital city has lead to a line-up change and with it has come the development of their unique in-your-face-energetic-fuzzed-out rock sound that is synonymous with the charismatic three piece.

Now comprising of a Kiwi, a Scot and an Englishman the band are serious as ever and continuing to secure themselves in the local scene as a hardworking, creative act and a band to certainly watch out for after a string of track releases, a video release and a bunch of reputable gig slots supporting The Fire and I, The Minutes and a recent headline slot at the Official Glasvegas gig aftershow party.

Think The Cribs meets The Black Keys before they both got a bit too big for their boots. Described as ‘buzzing’ by The List.

Check Tom, Ceallaigh and Angus out live at Broadcast in Glasgow on 08/03/2013 as main support for SOS.

Currently recording new material due for release May 2013, keep updated with their goings on at www.facebook.com/piratesons

www.facebook.com/edinburgh.undersound

 

Dirty Dirty Rascal by Pirate Sons Recored by Greg Dodgson & Joshua Taylor. Mixed by Hubert Aniolek Go to Feast Soundcloud to hear more artists

Live Review – Everything Everything @ Oran Mar

Everything EverythingHaving not been through to Oran Mor but knowing it was a renovated church, I had a rather misguided idea about the place. I didn’t know it had a downstairs venue, so I thought I might be going to a gig plagued by uncontrollable reverb. How wrong I was. Underneath the church is a really cool space which is very rock n’ roll looking and has an equally great sound. It’s perfect for going to see an intimate gig and I L.O.V.E going to see a band in a small venue. It’s a real celebration of music; close, loud, and a great way to see bands deliver what they do, right in your face.
Arriving a little late after some excellent noodles from Wudon (535 Great Western Road, brilliant food, 5 mins from Oran Mar but I digress…), we only caught three tunes from the support band Post War Years. Looking like a mix between fourth year uni students and staff from Waterstones, this hirsute bunch’s live show hit much harder than their tracks online suggested. Great vocals from three of the band; mixed with drums, keys and launch pads (and at points two basses), this band where a fantastic support to the main act. Apart from the drummer the other three members where locked behind a mountain of equipment and visually this sometimes put a barrier between them and the audience but the tunes soared very high indeed. They had elements of Arcade Fire in the vocals and a great bunch of synth lines, beats, and guitars. What’s not to like?

You might wonder if the studio-based sound of the headline act could be delivered live(we did) but it was obvious by the excellent second track in the set, Torso of the Week (got to love the Heat referencing!) that Everything Everything can deliver their tight and varying sounds on stage with real balls. There are no weak members in the band. Both Jeremy Pritchard and Alex Robertshaw supply their bass and guitars respectively. They also switch to keys when required, back and forth mid-track. Michael Spearman is a fantastic understated drummer swapping between his analogue kit and pads to lift the band’s live sound with ease. On top of this all three supply backing vocals to help create the punchy vocals so prominent on their records.
Everything Everything are helped greatly by the additional keys player and this frees Jonathan Higgs to concentrate on his vocal and guitar duties. This worked so well. Before he was locked to one place but now he is free to roam the stage and you could see, feel and hear how much pleasure this gave him and the crowd. On stage he was obviously having the time of his life and why not? He is a fantastic vocalist and guitarist and lyricist. How often do you here lyrics like “I’m genuflecting in a penitent way”? At times he was finding it hard to wipe the smile off his face and with truly epic versions of tunes of their 2009 Mercury-nominated CD ‘Man Alive’ and the excellent new ‘Arc’. You can understand why. Moving from between up-tempo tunes like ‘Qwerty Keyboards’ to slower tracks like ‘Choice Mountain’, you are aware you are watching a band who can deliver an incredibly wide range of feeling from their music. The crowd lapped it up and it was hard to know who enjoyed it more.

Listen to their two excellent CDs and catch them live if you can.

Jonathan Higgs; even if your nephew doesn’t like your band. Feast does.

Redolent Live at the Depot

New Edinburgh band Redolent have been awful busy making music since hatching 6 months ago. Here is our current fave, but check out our youtube channel for more from these guys.

Join the Library (#2)

THE FALL – DRAGNET

The Fall Dragnet

This is the second in a series about how my local libraries (Baillieston and Shettleston) afforded me a wonderful musical adventure and the huge impact they made on me. I joined them as a 16 year old because I couldn’t afford albums and borrowing from them appeared to me to be the perfect solution…which it most certainly was.

In my 5th year at high school one of the novels my English teacher selected was The Fall by Albert Camus. This was the only reason I picked up a copy of Dragnet, which had been released a few months earlier. Everything about the album was challenging but also exhilarating and liberating and, like me I’m sure it lead others to form their own groups free from restrictive ideas about song structure and musicianship.

The line-up included Mark E Smith (vocals), Marc Riley (guitar), Craig Scanlon (guitar), Steve Hanley (bass), Mike Leigh (drums). Leigh was replaced by Paul Hanley shortly after and this became as I’ve come to think, the second classic line-up of the band. It is a band discovering their sound, lo-fi and angular which I found hard to listen to at first, especially the second side but it was the wild and weird garage-like pop of tracks such as Printhead with the wiity opening line “Hey badges tinkle T-shirts mingle
Hey you horror-face!” and Dice Man that won me over to the bands radical approach.

Of all The Fall albums I’ve listened to, over time this is my favourite. It’s rough and I found out later that it was recorded in 3 or 4 days, but for me it demonstrates the essence of The Fall, raucous and uncompromising determined to mine their own musical path. My excitement about the album lead me to see the band at the Tech when they came to Glasgow in tow with another great band The Cramps which is one of the best gigs I’ve ever been to.

The next time I saw the band was at The Plaza in Glasgow, this time supported by brilliant Edinburgh band The Scars. By this time I was well and truly one of The Fallen!

Fridgemaster signs to Feast

Thisisfeast is delighted to announce the signing of Callum Easter as Fridgemaster. We are working with him on three new tunes and are super excited to be working with such a talented artist. We will keep you posted and up to date with Fridgemaster and his developing career right here.

 

Join the Library (#1)

Pop Group 2THE POP GROUP – FOR HOW MUCH LONGER….DO WE TOLERATE MASS MURDER?

From Wiki

“The Pop Group were a British post-punk band from Bristol, England, formed in 1978, whose dissonant sound spanned punk, free jazz, funk and dub reggae. Their lyrics were often political in nature.

Formed by Mark Stewart (lyrics, vocals), Jon Waddington (guitar), Gareth Sager (guitar), Simon Underwood (bass) and Bruce Smith (drums, percussion), they issued their debut single, “She is Beyond Good and Evil” on Radar Records in March 1979.

Their debut album Y, was produced by Dennis Bovell to critical acclaim but low sales figures. Although it did not chart, the album’s success was sufficient to convince Rough Trade to sign the band, but not before more line-up changes, with Dan Catsis replacing Underwood on bass.

The band’s career with Rough Trade commenced with what is possibly their best-known single “We Are All Prostitutes”, which featuring a guest appearance by free improviser Tristan Honsinger on cello. This was followed by the release of their second album, For How Much Longer Do We Tolerate Mass Murder? in March 1980, which included a contribution from US proto-rappers The Last Poets.

The photo on the cover is the famous photograph, “Two Gypsies” by André Kertész.”

This is the first in a series about how my local libraries (Baillieston and Shettleston) afforded me a wonderful musical adventure and the huge impact they made on me. I joined them as a 16 year old because I couldn’t afford albums and borrowing from them appeared to me to be the perfect solution…which it most certainly was.

I first came across The Pop Group’s second album in the racks of Shettleston library. I was subscribing to both NME and Sounds at the time but it was only in retrospect as I flicked through past copies that I came across photographs and interviews of the band which made me more aware of their interests and approach to music. It was more to do with the strange mixture of the band’s name combined with the album’s title and sleeve artwork…alarming, mysterious and confrontational. Then there was the track titles such as Forces Of Oppression and Feed the Hungry….I just had to hand over my library card (it didn’t cost anything to borrow music then) take it home and listen.

WOW…for someone who only a year earlier had been a huge fan of The Jam this was intense! It was an aural assault but exhilarating, challenging and just like nothing I’d ever heard before. To my youthful ears, the heady brew concocted by Bruce Smith, Gareth Sager, Mark Stewart and Dan Catsis was a revelation on all fronts musical, lyrical and artistic. To my mind there has never been a better opening track to an album than Forces Of Oppression. With its opening chants and unrelenting groove the band creates their own ‘cold sweat’.

Interview: Battle of the Zoo

Thisisfeast likes to listen to lots of new music so we were keen to have chat with Battle of the Zoo members Aymen and Mark.

Thisisfeast: Tell us a bit about yourselves…

Aymen: We are called Battle of the Zoo and we are releasing a free EP. We have been finishing off our artwork, and just sort of trying to find roots to release it, like our website, Facebook, and other social media things that people tune into.

Thisisfeast: What’s your music like?

Mark: I suppose we play stuff that we kind of like, and what we would like to buy ourselves; which makes it kind of easier to do and make it far more enjoyable and pretty good fun. For our style it’s hard to explain. We can sit down and do a track that is completely different from one we have done before. But we will really dig it, enjoy it, get into it and see where it goes, and it might end up on the album or on a download. That’s the way we are going to attack things, instead of hitting the same genre or style all the time. A lot of the tracks are really different and I suppose that’s because we like a lot of different styles of music.

Thisisfeast: How long have you been working on your tunes?

Mark: We have got up to 30 tracks we have been working on over a while which we have been whittling down to this 4 track EP that we are going to give freely away. We want to follow it up pretty quickly with a main single with a couple of tracks, and then an album. Over the last while we have been sussing out tracks we really like. We have been trying them live and seeing good responses from crowds which has really helped us choose what’s coming out first, and what’s going to make the album. We have played a couple of live gigs with all the kit, running sequencers, hitting off trigger pads, keyboards, running Reason and Aymen doing all the vocals live. We have been working hard on that to help fine tune, but we knew which ones worked and it’s kind of been confirmed by the crowd.

Aymen: We wanted to test drive some tracks and we played a gig in a place called the 3rd door in Edinburgh, and did one at Liquid Rooms in Edinburgh with Simian Mobile Disco

Thisisfeast:  That all sounds good. On another tip, I heard you got a remix with Paul Weller, how did that come around?

Aymen: We sent our demos away to some labels. We ended up meeting someone who works for one of the record label. We gave him the demos, basically he was asking what we were up to, and he liked the stuff we were doing. We sent him some original tracks; we had a few chats and strong meetings with him; just some good general conversation from these guys in London, sort of bigger label guys. Off the back of that they asked us if we would be interested in doing some remixing. So from there they sent us the stems for Paul Weller next single. Bearing in mind they told us, it was more than likely that they were not going to accept it.  But we finished it, they liked it and Mr Weller had it played to him and he liked it too. From that we have been asked to do some other remixes, but at the moment we are just trying to concentrate on our own stuff.

 
We have been given access to the new tracks from Battle of the Zoo. Have a listen to them and next time your see their name, go check them out. Enjoy and look out for the ’FK the DET’ E.P out on Monday the  5th of November

 
FKDET – Battle of the Zoo by Thisisfeast

Turn a Blind Eye – Battle of the Zoo by Thisisfeast

EH1 Live review.

Now in its second year EH1 Live has gone from strength to strength, showcasing some of the country’s finest unsigned talent.

Feast started the day the Electric Circus with the fantastic Gold Lions, their set didn’t start the festival gently but kicked it right in the teeth, ripping away the early Sunday cobwebs with their searing, relentless blues rock/garage sound.
They have been described as a Scottish White Stripes but that’s just lazy journalism, sure the homage to Jack White is apparent, but these boys rip apart the rulebook and batter it with blistering fever.
’1000 Ships’ and ‘ Elsie’s House’ were particular highlights, all energetic energetic fretwork and pounding vigour.
The Gold Lions simply deserve to be, the gem of the day!
Next up was troubadour Jack Rowberry
who belted out the tunes, with his backing band adding extra depth to his acoustic craftmanship.

The hotly-tipped The Machine Room’s set was unfortunately marred with technical difficulties, but the band soldiered on delivering an interesting indie pop set in which they flit between swapping guitars and keys, there’s a good buzz building up for the band and hopefully bigger stages beckon soon for the band.
The Modern Faces are a true festival band, full of bravado and rock and roll swagger, smashing the hype with a ‘Mon Then’ snarl.
The Dunfermline five piece delivered each stomping track with energy and passion. Their anthemic brand of britrock should easily equate to masses at the festivals. Definitely a band going places.

The Stagger Rats were excellent, and in true Stagger Rat style they were a member down but delivered a superb set which the heaving Liquid Rooms lapped up, especially stand out harmonious pop single ‘Fuzzy Fuzzy’ which had the local crowd in rapture.

Each track is consistently interesting, jumping from sweet melodies to gypsy guitar riffs. The Stagger Rats are an asset to the unsigned Scottish scene.
The Ok Social Club bounded on the stage and blasted their way through their hook driven, glossy spiky guitar pop set with vigour delivering tracks such as ‘The Late 90′s’ to the bouncing packed out crowd.

All in all EH1 was an incredibly well organised affair, but more importantly, it showcased some of Scotland’s more diverse and exciting talent.

Furthermore, to all the doubters that disagree that there is no Edinburgh scene or Scottish bands who are not good enough to break, you couldn’t be further from the truth, which the EH1 boys highlighted with a right good festival!

See you next year!

Fortune’s Unsigned Festival

Fortune Promotions has decided to use this Opportunity to take part in this years Oxjam Takeover for the first time, we have decided its our time to do our bit for charity by hosting a one night unsigned festival showcasing Scottish talent. The event is to raise money for Oxfam and it is our goal to raise £800 for the night. The event is called Oxjams Fortune’s Unsigned Festival with Fortune Promotions. This event is taking place in Edinburgh between Bannermans Bar and The City Cafe hosting 18 of the finest unsigned bands from across scotland (Dundee, Glasgow, Falkirk and Edinburgh) including Aperture, Sonic Hearts Foundation, Kung Fu Academy, Fuzzy and the Peaches, The Directors, My Electric Love Affair, In A Dollhouse and Jen & The gents, all for £7 a ticket thats 0.38p per band now who can argue with that tickets are available from Ticket Scotland. The event will be taking place on Friday the 19th of October at 6pm with The Dirty Suits kicking things off. All of the details are link below ( set times, bands taking part and locations of the acts)

To buy online tickets click here

Oxfam Fortunes Unsigned Website

EH1 Live

EH1 Live is back with an almighty bang, showcasing some of the very best unsigned Scottish bands, this year’s festival takes over Edinburgh on Sunday 16th September with over 40 unsigned acts playing at the the Liquid Rooms, Cabaret Voltaire, Electric Circus, Sneaky Pete’s and Whistle Binkie’s.

The eclectic line up includes tipped for the top The Imagineers, Davey Horne, Modern Faces and headliners The Phantom Band.

The one day events also celebrates the capital’s fantastic live scene with local heavyweights The OK Social Club, The Stagger Rats and troubadours Jack Rowberry, Greg Pearson and Callum Beattie.

Feast will also be looking forward to catching Leicester’s The Lysergic Suite who are by all accounts fantastic live, a heady mix of driving synths and psychedelica, and Edinburgh’s The Gold Lions who will definitely get you in the festival mood with their blend of dirty garage-blues.

The lineup highlights some of the very best in unsigned talent, and all for a mere £18, and we’ve all got a Monday holiday as well!

Preview: Nature Boys Boat Launch

The Nature Boys are launching their new single next Saturday and where better to launch than on a boat? The gig is at Cruz (that boat in Leith that’s actually a bar) and the single, ‘Going Nowhere’, is great; a taut rabid monkey of a record.

The recording goes a good way to capturing the anarchic energy of their gigs while adding just enough in the way of fuzzed bass overdubs, chanted vocals (and even subtle psychedelic guitars) to lift their punk drum bass ‘n’ guitar onto a more singletastic plane.

On top, like the finest Bonne Maman jam on this fresh punk croissant, is Cammy’s vocals, with a vocal performance that shows his vocal talents go way beyond the ‘Fall’ talk/sing type splendour of previous Nature Boys recordings. While I hope he doesn’t abandon his more customary drawl altogether it is great to hear him sing like this and suggests the boys have the crossover potential to go on to great things.

The launch of the Going Nowhere is on Saturday 25th, at Cruz Bar in Leith, doors at 8pm. Support is from the Begbies and Jack Rowberry. For those of you that aren’t familiar with the band here they are in our CRE-8 studios at Jewel & Esk College earlier this year.

Interview – The Asps

We had the Asps in the studio at Jewel and Esk a wee while ago and thisisfeast managed to catch up with Paul to check what they have been up to since we last hooked up.

thisisfeast: For those who don’t know, who are you guys?

Paul: Well we are the Asps, and I am the singer – my name’s Paul Dourley. I also play rhythm guitar, the lead guitarist is Chris Simpson, and we have a synth player Michael Barry, the drummer is Lewis Hutchison, the saxophone player is Graeme Renwick and the bass player is Craig Renwick, both brothers.

thisisfeast: Why did you call yourselves the Asps?

Paul: We got the name from the song “Man on the moon” by REM. One of the lyrics is – Egypt is troubled but the horrible asps. It’s always a lyric I enjoyed singing and the word itself is phonologically pleasing.

thisisfeast: I like the use of phonologically, I might have to look that up later. What have you been up to since we last saw you a few months ago?

Paul: We have been working away on stage set-ups and working on our new tracks, this month we are quite busy. We are playing BT London Live in Hyde Park, we are expecting a quite a busy crowd and quite a lot of exposure. We are also playing at Victoria Park for an hour on the same day, so we are very excited about that.

thisisfeast: How did you get the gigs in London?

Paul: We got it through Live Nation which is part of a thing called Live Connection, who we got in touch with last year. They are kind of reaching out to unsigned bands. You submit your music and they troll through the music and they pick you to become part of different events. Live Nations have been dealing with high end bands for a long time and I think that they want to reach out and offer unsigned bands a bit of an opportunity as well.

thisisfeast: I want to talk about your songs a little bit. Who writes your tunes and what does it involve?

Paul: Usually the main substance of the songs, well certainly with Microchip and Learn to Fly, is written by me and Michael Barry on keyboards.  He usually comes up with some music and I come up with the lyrics and melody, and then the rest of the band add their magical icing to it.

thisisfeast: I been listening to the mix of Microchip over the last couple of days and its sounding great. I was just wondering what the song about?

Paul: It’s a love song to the microchip. Lots of things would not be possible without the invention of the microchip. One of the main lyrics is ‘Computer subordinate we need Microchips invented’.  It’s harking back to a time when computers where pretty rubbish, you know all they did was calculate things and how frustrating they used to be, although they obviously still are. It’s really a love song to technology. (Paul texted me a later “its really a love song for robots”)

thisisfeast: What are you up to in the future?

Paul: Well, we recently signed a publishing deal with Sony and we are in the middle of re-negotiating, because they’re quite interested as we are making an album with Ron Nevison next year in San Fransisco and they kind of picked up on that. (Ron Nevison has worked with The Who, Led Zepplin, Bad Company, Kiss amongst others)

thisisfeast: How did the recording with Ron Nevison come about?

Paul: It was through reverbnation – we submitted our music to a competition. They got in touch with us about a month later and out of 9500 entries they chose ours, which was crazy.

ThisIsFeast@soundcloud
Microchip – The Asps
Engineered by Gavin Whyte & Hubert Aniolek
Mixed by Stuart MacLaughlan

Live Review GoNorth – The Machine Room at The Room, Inverness

This is the second time Feast has seen The Machine Room and they just get better. Tonight they introduce their new drummer who does a brilliant job given this is his first show with the band. Their song structures demands a lot from the rhythm section upon which are layered synths, guitar and keyboards.

Amongst the songs they play tonight are the tracks which make up their great ‘Love from a Distance’ EP which you can get via their Facebook page. Their electronic dream-pop is so catchy and songs such as ‘Your Head on the Floor Next Door’ and ‘Camino De Soda’ deserve to be playlisted on our airwaves all summer long. They are amongst the freshest electro new wave bands to come around which also includes Kitsune signings Juveniles and Citizens. Their sound is big and expansive but remains highly emotive and subtle and they are extremely groovy…

They are due to play T in the Park and Wickerman this Summer…so you know who to see if you find yourself at these festivals.

Live Review – Honeyblood, Secret Gig, Edinburgh

This is bizarre gig number 2 following on from our first bizarre venue outing to Mrs. Fitzherberts in Brighton at The Great Escape Festival. We went through a black door and up a spiral staircase to find the ‘lounge’. The next room was the bar and down the corridor was the room where Honeyblood would play. The low ceiling meant that being 5ft 11inches in height I found myself for the first time ever at a live show, sitting on the floor – rather hippyish I thought.
Given how precarious the live music venue situation is in Edinburgh at the moment, this is a great little hideout so look out for more shows coming from 39 Niddry Street.

Honeyblood however are not ‘hippyish’ but describe themselves as ‘two girls who play some songs about stuff’. Although the sound is muddied their songs still hold a huge appeal. The songs swagger like the best garage rock/pop. The good thing about them is that they’re something new. Too many new bands are so retro, harking back to the 1980’s Glasgow, Edinburgh and Manchester bands and in reverence to C86. Honeyblood lyrically can be wise, ferocious, bitter and hopeful and can musically evoke high emotion all within one song and I think this is the exciting thing about them that they can convey this with only a voice, a guitar and a drum kit, they just have a way musically of being able to get under your skin.

At least three songs in their set sent shivers down my spine, which few groups seem capable of doing these days. Slightly raucous but gutsy as hell with songs as good as No Spare Key, Bud and Super Rat. They also do imaginative re-interpretations as on the cover they do tonight by Boston band Doctors and Lawyers. Honeyblood proved that they have the songs, the style and the guts to be the best. You can get their first release from http://honeyblood.bandcamp.com/

They played their first shows in Glasgow and Edinburgh only recently so hope and expect to see them round your way soon starting with this Sunday (3rd June) at Henry’s Cellar Bar where they share the bill with Plastic Animals. Enough said, they’re great and they’re on your doorstep, so see them.

Django Django, Pavilion Theatre, Brighton.

Django Django formed in Edinburgh in 2009 after meeting at Art College. We caught them at Brighton’s Pavilion Theatre, the huge queue outside a fair indication of how the band’s following has built up over the last couple of years although  undoubtedly the crowd is swelled further by the fact that they have been on Jools Holland’s TV show the night before.

On their eponymous album, released earlier this year, there are definite whiffs of the shambolic charm of the Beta Band but live I am surprised to find they have a pristine sound and incisiveness  which adds an epic quality that I wasn’t expecting. There is actually a Beta Band connection though as it turns out as drummer David Maclean’s big brother was a member of the much missed outfit.

Like the Beta Band Django Django understand how to mix their musical influences together in intoxicating ways: The keys cut through the mix  aggressively, threatening to turn the gig into a nineties style rave, the vocals float above the rest of the music with spacious psychedelic harmonies and the cowbell clanks as if your head is in a metal waste paper bin and Mr T is on the outside hitting the bin with a gold drumstick. At one point  the keyboards cut out, just as Grimes’ sequencers will do the following night but nothing can stop the Django feel good funnel for long and the ivories kick back in after a couple of minutes, albeit in mono.

From where we were standing, which was admittedly fairly near the back,  the pleasingly surreal impression I got of the band visually was that the group was made up of New Order’s Bernard Sumner on vocals, Jimmy Carr, the unnaturally huge headed joke jockey, on guitar and playwright Dennis Potter on keys.  On later reflection having seen their video appearance on BBC iplayer I realise this impression was possibly, arguably, slightly wide of the mark.  Either way Django Django are one of the best bands to emerge in the UK in a long time and live manage to be charming, exciting and original all in one accessible, love-able package and there just aren’t too many new bands around just now that you can say that about.

The Great Escape Festival – Juveniles at Komedia, Brighton

The French electronic/indie label Kitsune has been releasing good new music recently, especially the Citizens! debut album produced by Alex Kapranos of Franz Ferdinand and a couple of EP’s by three musicians from Rennes who call themselves Juveniles.

Juveniles are the first band Feast see today – a busy lunchtime show downstairs at Komedia and they turn out to be a brilliant start to the day. This French trio were a real find and I suppose this is what makes The Great Escape so alluring as a festival. I knew nothing about them except that they had recently signed to Kitsune. They announce that their next EP “One O Six” is due to be released in June.

Their sound combines guitars, drums, synths and programming which is inventive and energetic mixing electronica, punk rock and pop into an eclectic genre of music.
They stand apart in terms of electronic music the way that Daft Punk and Air did on their initial releases and are just as enthralling. The festival only schedules thirty minute live sets but Juveniles could have happily flexed and spread their sounds for a lot longer given the reception and encouragement they received from the crowd.

Interview – Artist management in the 21st Century part 4

With the music business changing at an incredible speed, Feast invited Biffy Clyro manager Dee Bahl and Idlewild manager Bruce Craigie to discuss the ever-expanding role of the artist manager in the 21st Century. In the last of our four instalments Dee and Bruce talk about the investment, marketing and the Music Managers Forum.

Q: Are independent investors including management companies a realistic alternative to labels?

B.C. Yes, I think so. As I said, because it’s easier to get your music out there, there’s no reason why, if you build that team around that investment, there’s no reason why you can’t build up the artists profile to a certain stage where it becomes inevitable that a bigger record label might come along and pick you up. Ed Sheeran is the perfect example of that. He’s got to such a size where he had to be picked up. These stories are few and far between unfortunately, but it shows it’s possible. If you can work with a management company or a set of investors that understands the needs of the music business, I guess that’s one of the issues because the music business is one of those industries that’s very difficult to invest in because the goalposts change or the length of time it might take an artist to get onto that ladder or get successful might take longer than an investor anticipates and in the time of economic crisis it might be hard to find those investors that will give that amount of time and the repayment terms may not be satisfactory to the artist where the investor wants their money back a bit quicker. All of those things have to be taken into account but it’s a question of finding money wherever you can but you have to make sure everybody’s comfortable with the deal.

Q: How important is marketing and innovation important in creating and building an artists’ fan-base?

B.C. I’m still of the opinion that talent and ability is the basis of any career. It is important to get that out there but I’ve always felt slightly nervous of things being hyped or marketed because I think that people do see through that quite quickly. Whatever you do it needs to appear natural. I mean we all know how a piece of music on a bit of Youtube footage can suddenly exalt you into the stars so it can happen very naturally that way as well. It’s the trick of finding a nice natural way to do it but it does come back to talent and ability.

D.B. It’s almost everything. It’s vital in breaking a new artist or a new release. That’s why bands end up signing with major labels. The marketing budget that the majors can afford on campaigns is huge. It’s very difficult to do it online yourself. To have everything working in a coordinated fashion to gain a reaction from an audience is an expensive and time-consuming process.

Q: In the recent past there was a good deal of publicity around the appointment of Brian Message to head the Music Managers Forum. How do you feel about his appointment and the relevance of this trade organisation to the way managers do business?

B.C. I’ve never been a member of the forum, not for any real reason. I’ve been lucky in my early career as I had lots of experience at record company level so I kind of knew what was going on at record companies. I think it’s probably not a bad thing these days to have the forum there. If a young manager can learn from any individual or organisation that would seem to be a good thing from my point of view. Brian has been very successful in what they’ve done. Part and parcel of the way they do business has worked very well for them and they’re investing money into the business themselves so you can only applaud that kind of investment from their point of view.

D.C. Brian Message was originally an accountant, if I’m correct. In this day-in-age you need new business partners to emerge simply because of the lack of investment. So having someone like that who understands the business and how money can be generated can be a positive thing which other aspiring managers can learn from and Brian becoming the head of the MMF can only be a positive given his background with Radiohead. He must have learnt a lot given his experience as an accountant but he must also have learnt a lot from managing one of the biggest bands in the world. The organisation is relevant because people like him can pass that experience on and that can only be a positive. I’ve never actually joined the MMF but I recognise it’s a great way of networking. I’ve sort of gone out on a limb myself and I’ve learnt along the way and it’s worked out okay for me so far.

Live Review – This Is Music 6th Birthday feat. The Machine Room, Honeyblood and Magic Eye at Sneaky Pete’s, Edinburgh

Happy birthday This Is Music, you certainly know how to celebrate in style. We went along to join in the celebrations. Appearing tonight was an Edinburgh band and two Glasgow bands supporting Sub Pop favourites Still Corners. Being based in Edinburgh we’d heard good things about The Machine Room but didn’t know much about either of the Glasgow bands, Honeyblood and Magic Eye.

Magic Eye have just released an EP on cassette tape which you can get via their tumblr site at magiceyemusic.com and tonight’s show coincides with their tour to promote it. They create tender melodic songs which are like sonic dreamscapes which wouldn’t be out of place in David Lynch’s Twin Peaks. Heavily reverbed guitars swirl around dreamy vocals grounded by a solid electro drum beat. They’re back in Edinburgh with Honeyblood on Tuesday 29th May.

Honeyblood announce they only have six tapes left and wonder if anyone is going to go through to Glasgow the following day to see them at The Stag and Dagger Festival. I love it when you see a band you don’t know anything about and you get it and they’re great. This quite simply sums up Honeyblood. They term themselves a ‘garage rock-crunch pop’ band. Lyrically eloquent, they don’t pull their punches, as on Super Rat about a former relationship, “I will hate you forever, scum bag sleaze slimeball grease”. Single ‘No Spare Key’ is a standout as is their electrifying cover of The Innocence Mission’s ‘The Girl On My Left’. Probably no tapes left but visit their site anyway yumhoneyblood.tumblr.com. Got to be THE show of the week when they play with Magic Eye next Tuesday (29th May ) at Door 39, Niddrie Street.

The Machine Room come on stage all very unassuming; plug in, smile, and in an instant hit the audience with a brilliant electro-esque wall of sound which is made up of tracks from their recent ‘Love From A Distance’ EP. Each of their songs creates a lasting impression, highly emotive, full of synth stabs and echoing vocals and the crowd are obviously well aware of the qualities of this band when they cheer from the vocals which opens standout track “Camino de Soda”. All of their songs intrigues, building layer upon layer of sound into a catchy and very individual approach to creating haunting and beautiful music. See them at the end of term Edinburgh Art School revel on Friday June 1st.

No Spare Key by Honeyblood

Flamin’ Teenage by MAGIC EYE

Alabama Shakes, King Tut’s, Glasgow

Star studded audiences, tickets going for ten times their value and riding on a whirlwind of frenzied hype the Alabama Shakes rode into Glasgow. The atmosphere in ‘Tuts was electric, a packed crowd grinning in fevered anticipation, and there hung a hopeful sense of magic in the sweaty air. All too often bands arrive amidst the frenzied ‘the next big thing’, ‘band du jour’ and even every once in a while ‘the voice of a generation’. The album delivered but will the live performance equate the hype?

Bounding onto the tiny stage like a Southern preacher, Brittany Howard had the crowd in the palm of her hand from her first breaths ‘Goin to the Party’. Her soul-drenched holler has been compared to everyone from Janis Joplin, Howlin’ Wolf and Aretha Franklin her voice is something to really behold a Southern bellow that defies belief and stereotype in equal measure, whilst she contorts her face and attacks her geetar with bullying vigour.

Throwing their biggest song, the gospel-tinged ‘Hold On’ so early into their set could prove catastrophic for many bands but the ‘Shakes pull it off with ease, with the audience joining in the sermon all hands in the air and singing along.
Most of their debut album ‘Boys & Girls’ gets a preview with the soulful refrain ‘Hang Loose’ and the hearfelt, spine tingling ‘I found You’, follow in quick precesion. ‘Boys & Girls’ starts with Howard telling the crowd ‘I’m gonna tell y’all a lil storee….’ in her honeyed Southern drawl as the crowd whoops and claps, hanging onto every word and hollered syllable. Whilst the rest of band Heath Fogg and Zac Cockrell (can you get much cooler) and Steve Johnson also deliver a confident, assured and energetic performance. ‘Heavy Chevey’ is a rollicking, raccous shot of Southern rock n soul, a perfect set closer.

Remarkably, Alabama Shakes are doing nothing new, or fashionable but a band who with so much soul and conviction that everything else seems irrelevant. This time, believe the hype.

The Great Escape Festival – Holland at Mrs Fitzherberts, Brighton

The Great Escape is a new music festival and convention held over three days every May in Brighton. Being a fledgling blog who have also started a record label and soon to release our debut single by Maydays , we were really interested in attending the DIY panel discussions on how to develop and promote a record label in a rapidly changing music industry environment.

The other reason to attend was to see some great new bands that we could champion in an unlikely ploy to help attract these bands to come and play in Edinburgh. I do hope The Great Escape sticks to focussing on new bands and stays well clear of putting on a headline act to generate publicity which sadly Edinburgh’s own Haddow Fest did last year by booking Razorlight – paying a band who have no interest in the longevity of the festival a massive fee, which is perhaps one of the reasons the Festival has yet to appear this year, and in the process potentially depriving local bands of the experience of performing in a festival setting.

We arrive on the Wednesday evening which is when the Alternative Escape begins. This is a platform for bands who are not on the official festival playlist. We decide to go to the ‘Made In Cornwall’ night upstairs at Mrs Fitzherberts pub, but as we are pretty late in arriving only manage to see the last band of the evening called Holland.

Decked out in Cornish flags, upstairs at Mrs Fitzherberts is so small that getting thirty people in is pretty much a sell-out show. On first appearances it looks as if the band members are four feet tall, however the ‘stage’ is actually a two-foot drop from where the audience stands and a wide pillar which blocks the view of the band pretty much means that the singer is facing a wall for most of the set – a bizarrely intimate venue.

Holland are not influenced by The Beach Boys despite their name being the title of one of the bands’ great early ‘70’s records. Their music is fast and frenetic combined with dream-like vocals, but clearly they know how to create a dynamic within a song which keeps their slightly shoegaze approach appealing. They are incredibly tight and have a good sense of how to pace their set with current single “Lovely Bones” being a standout track which keeps this small but highly enthusiastic crowd jumping in admiration.

Holland – Lovely Bones 7″ by destinationmoon

The Great Escape Festival – Grimes at Digital, Brighton

There is a real sense of anticipation amongst the packed audience as Montreal electro-pop artist Grimes (aka Claire Boucher) sound-checks her own equipment. However, as the show starts, Boucher signals to the mixing engineer that there’s no sound emanating from her keyboard before realizing she hasn’t turned the volume up on it. An apologetic cry of “oops” only serves to endear her to the audience even more.

In between playing keyboards, sometimes two at the same time, Boucher howls and yelps into her microphone whilst doing some live looping, dancing and bouncing to the beat. She plays “Vanessa” which brings a huge cheer followed shortly afterwards by “Oblivion” and “Genesis” from her recent 4AD album “Visions”.

Boucher sports an ‘Anarchy’ t-shirt which is apt given the cacophony of sound she has mutated into what can only be termed wondrous and beguiling songs. She is joined on stage by two dancers decked out in all black clothing, sporting chalked faces weaving shapes to exemplify the twists and turns of Grimes’ musical vision. A great album…a brilliant performance.