Hazy Recollections events have long been on our radar at Elba and it’s always pleasing to see them return year on year to add some Sunday afternoon respite after the Saturday night before. The first HR of the festival takes place this Sunday and features one of our favourite bands here at Elba, The Hazey Janes.
Sweet Baboo charmed the pants off us when he played at Randolph’s Leap’s album launch in spring last year and we can only imagine with the added parts of The Pictish Trail that this may be akin to some sort of musically brilliant stand-up show. We mean that in the very very best way, I promise.
In a year where our nation dominated headlines and an amazing sense of national pride was evident whether you were a Yes or No voter, one of the most poignant pieces of culture which grabbed the attention was the collaboration between King Creosote and filmmaker Virginia Heath. ‘From Scotland With Love’ is a collection of archive footage was bound together with KC’s trademark stylings to create a snapshot of the history of this bonnie land in which we live. Support comes from the excellent Tiny Ruins.
There’s something for everyone in this Congolese collective. Traditional methods fused with distorted electronics and instruments made from old cars, this gig won’t be your run of the mill evening out in Glasgow.
Promoters. Put on Francois & The Atlas Mountains in Glasgow and I promise I will continue to come along, bringing a new convert every time. Consistently one of the best and most entertaining live bands you’ll ever see, there is nothing that will keep me away from this gig. Support comes from the ever braw Kid Canaveral.
In case you missed it, the longlist for this year’s Scottish Album of the Year was announced a couple of weeks ago and as usual there is no shortage of talent on display. Whether it be Frightened Rabbit’s anthemic ‘Pedestrian Verse‘, Tommy Smith’s National Jazz Orchestra’s homage to Duke Ellington, ‘In the Spirit of Duke‘ or Mogwai’s brooding score to Les Revenants, there is a bit of everything on the longlist of 20.
I probably sound like a broken record (saves this sentence again for 2015), but i genuinely look forward to the longlist being announced every year. Not just because there are albums that I hope will be on there but also because there’s often a few albums which I’ve either never heard of or just not paid enough attention to which I’ll then go and give a proper listen to. This year is no exception. Of course, readers of this blog will have guessed that we’re very happy to see Kid Canaveral’s ‘Now That You Are A Dancer‘, The Pastels’ ‘Slow Summits‘, Rick Redbeard’s ‘No Selfish Heart‘ and ‘Tomorrow’s Harvest‘ by Boards of Canada on the list. However, we’re also delighted to see another stack of albums there, ripe to fall in love with or just give a bit more listening to.
At the end of the day, the SAY Award will go to one winner, but the fact that these 20 albums have shone through the hundreds of albums released in this country, is quite the achievement in itself.
This year’s longlist is as follows;
Adam Holmes and the Embers – Heirs and Graces
Adam Stafford – Imaginary Walls Collapse
Biffy Clyro – Opposites
Boards of Canada – Tomorrow’s Harvest
Camera Obscura – Desire Lines
CHVRCHES – The Bones Of What You Believe
Dunedin Consort (Dir. John Butt) – J. S. Bach: Six Brandenburg Concertos
Edwyn Collins – Understated
Frightened Rabbit – Pedestrian Verse
Hector Bizerk – Nobody Seen Nothing
Kid Canaveral – Now That You Are a Dancer
Mogwai – Les Revenants
Rick Redbeard – No Selfish Heart
RM Hubbert – Breaks & Bone
Roddy Hart & The Lonesome Fire – Roddy Hart & The Lonesome Fire
Scottish Chamber Orchestra (R. Ticciati) – Berlioz: Les Nuit D’été
Scottish National Jazz Orchestra – In The Spirit Of Duke
Steve Mason – Monkey Minds In The Devil’s Time
The Pastels – Slow Summits
Young Fathers – Tape Two
Currently the SAY website is streaming a longlisted album a day on their website. A public vote will follow for 72 hours starting on May 28th.
A little later than in previous years, the 2013 winner of the Scottish Bloggers and Music Sites Award (or BAMS as it is known affectionately in some circles) was announced, with Chvrches taking the number one spot for their critically acclaimed album, ‘The Bones of What You Believe’.
The votes were cast by 40 writers from 29 different blogs and music sites with 164 different LP’s getting nods. As ever, it was nice to see a few of our picks making the top 10. Boards of Canada, The Pastels and my top pick Kid Canaveral to name a few. Here’s how the masses voted;
1. CHVRCHES – The Bones Of What You Believe (Virgin)
2. Frightened Rabbit – Pedestrian Verse (Atlantic)
3. Adam Stafford – Imaginary Walls Collapse (Song, By Toad)
4. Rick Redbeard – No Selfish Heart (Chemikal Underground)
5. Boards of Canada – Tomorrow’s Harvest (Warp)
6. The Pastels – Slow Summits (Domino)
7. The National – Trouble Will Find Me (4AD)
8. Steve Mason – Monkey Minds In The Devil’s Time (Domino)
9. Kid Canaveral – Now That You Are A Dancer (Fence)
10. Fuck Buttons – Slow Focus (ATP Recordings)
Here’s how your Elba writers voted;
1.Savages – Silence Yourself
2.Veronica Falls – Veronica Falls
3.Boards of Canada – Tomorrow’s Harvest
4.My Bloody Valentine – mbv
5.RM Hubbert – Breaks and Bone
6.Neko Case – The Worse Things Get, The Harder I Fight, The Harder I Fight, The More I Love You
7.Sparrow and The Workshop – Murderopolis
8.Bill Callahan – Dream River
9.Frightened Rabbit – Pedestrian Verse
10.The Pastels – Slow Summits
1.Kid Canaveral – Now That You’re A Dancer
2.Neko Case – The Worse Things Get, the Harder I Fight, The Harder I Fight, The More I Love You
3.Thirty Pounds of Bone – I Cannot Sing You Here, But For Songs Of Where
4.Veronica Falls – Veronica Falls
5.Franz Ferdinand – Right Thoughts, Right Words, Right Action
6.Sparrow & The Workshop – Murderopolis
7.The Pastels – Slow Summits
8.RM Hubbert – Breaks & Bone
9.Monoganon – Family
10. Fidlar – Fidlar
Sold out shows seem to be the order of this last week. I’m a little sore about not getting a Bill Callahan ticket for this Saturday’s Celtic Connections appearance. Similar tardiness led to missing out on The National’s docu-tour-fam-dram Mistaken For Strangers at the Glasgow Music and Film Festival, which has a delightful musical accompaniment from the second artist on this, our newest mixtape. Not all is lost though because many a Celtic Connections show has been enjoyed by ourselves, including a couple courtesy of BBC Scotland’s live sessions, plus payday rolled around and now there’s a stack of gig tickets waiting to be taken and torn, leaving stubs to be used as bookmarks. Does anyone else do that, or is it just we two (potentially three)?
Mogwai – Hexon Bogon 
Kim: Mogwai made the top ten!
Mogwai made the top ten!
Mogwai made the top ten!
The band’s scoring of Les Revenants may have been a catalyst for recent popularity, amongst which this week there has been a sold out show at Glasgow Royal Concert Hall as well as their single cask whisky selling out at The Good Spirit Co. Whatever the instigator, it is overdue and long may it continue. Enjoy the swift dramatic rumble of Rave Tapes’ album art-track Hexon Bogon.
Mogwai made the top ten!
Rozi Plain – Humans 
Kim: The last entry I made on Elba was a post packed full of information about the Glasgow Music and Film Festival. There was so much detail that the articulation of my overall enthusiasm may have been drowned out. It’s not often that my giddy chatter will be interrupted by such seriousness but I’ll allow it once again here. One of the most desirable events, as expected, was Mistaken For Strangers at The Glad Cafe. Lost Map Records’ Rozi Plain will play after the screening. Alas it’s now sold out but if you are unfamiliar with last year’s Joined Sometimes Unjoined then Humans should unite you.
Richmond Fontaine – Moving Back Home #2
Phil: This weeks excuse to shoehorn an old Richmond Fontaine track on to the mixtape comes in the form of a new piece of writing. Willy Vlautin, frontman of RF has just had his 4th book, ‘The Free’ published in the US and UK so I thought it was a good excuse to put on one of my favourite tracks. Vlautin’s writing is pretty reminiscent of his songwriting, tales of America set against (mostly) bleak backgrounds. I love reading his books and strangely, for all the gloom and hardship that he writes about, it really makes me want to go on a midwest road trip. Not only is his fourth book released this year, his first book, The Motel Life, has been made into a film. You can see the trailer here.
Kid Canaveral – Who Would Want to be Loved – 
Phil: I’m still muddling through my albums of 2013 for the Scottish BAMS vote and Kid Canaveral’s ‘Now That You’re A Dancer’ is sure to be in the reckoning. They’re releasing this track on hot pink heart shaped vinyl and if that wasn’t romantic enough, they’re having a Lumber Party at Stereo on February 14th ably assisted by Lost Map label mates, Randolph’s Leap, Malcolm Middleton and on the wheels of steel, The Twilight Sad. Hawt!
Pixies – Greens and Blues
Phil: People seem to be a bit down on the Pixies at the moment. Lamenting the passing of a bass player named Kim, saying they aren’t what they were, yes, there may be some truth in these statements but I couldn’t help listening to their latest EP and thinking that this unashamedly poppy hum-along wouldn’t have been out of place when they were in their celebrated prime. In fact, I’m pretty sure it would have been an indie club floorfiller.
Joanna Gruesome – Wussy Void 
Kim: Hey dreamy vocals over punky sounds. You please me. The Weird Sister LP is rich with such style and also has a track entitled Lemonade Grrrl, which has my heart aflutter. Wussy Plain is toned down Joanna Gruesome and still tries to rip apart your eardrums on the chorus. Joanna Gruesome play alongside Speedy Ortiz and Pinact on 15 February at Broadcast. Ear protection is advisable.
PLANK! -Aphidelity 
Kim: Procrastination has its value. I have discovered that when reading through guidelines and policy gets you down, Twitter is always there to while away the hours. I think it was the artist name and title that first stirred me into further investigation. Then I saw the artwork and HOLY CRAP I WANT TO SEE THAT MOVIE WHERE A GIANT BUG DESTROYS A CITY TO A SCORE OF INTERGALACTIC PROGGY-KRAUT-DISCO! So, PLANK! have written a Moroder meets Murphy instrumental. Now we just need a modern day Carpenter (this might not delight many but Rodriguez springs to mind) to make that film.
Where we pick one or maybe several things to check out in Edinburgh during the month of August [disclaimer: in the event of tardiness or over-eagerness, don’t be fooled by the headline, it’s today cos we’re picking it today, rather than you should go today, but maybe you should go today…]
Today is a good day to be a music lover in Edinburgh, maybe less so if you are a promoter. We’ve found four gigs, each, one we’re desperate to be at, all taking place in our capital city tonight.
Kid Canaveral have released one of my favourite albums of the year so far and they play their biggest headline show to date in Edinburgh at The Liquid Rooms, ably supported by Edinburgh stalwarts, Ballboy and the excellent Campfires in Winter. Doors for this one are at 7pm, with Campfires in Winter on shortly afterwards.
Next up, at the Queens Hall this time is Withered Hand’s festival show featuring a pretty tasty line up of King Creosote, Eugene Kelly (The Vaselines) and the Second Hand Marching Band. A couple of tickets are still left online for this one here.
Not much needs to be said on these pages about how good we think the line-up for the Pale Imitation Festival at Henry’s is, and tonight is probably our pick of it’s run of shows with a line-up of Sparrow & The Workshop, Siobhan Wilson and The Rosy Crucifixion. This one starts at 7:00 and tickets can still be had for it.
Last but by no means least, and Elba’s destination for the evening, takes us to the Electric Circus for a show by Art Brut. Having released their first album in 2005 with a ‘best of’ released this year, they make a long-awaited return after a quiet few years. There is absolutely no doubt that this gig won’t be a blast.
I’m not all that knowledgeable about classical or orchestral music but I’ve dabbled in some listening and I’ve got composers I like and different musical periods I prefer to others. String music is a particular preference of mine and indeed this crosses over to the the taste in music you’d probably expect from someone writing on this blog. Many people think it’s crazy that Sufjan Stevens’ ‘The BQE’ is one of my favourite pieces of his work.
It is to my liking then, that I hear of the Cairn String Quartet and their take on the popular music of Scotland. Their recent release ‘quartet quickies‘ features tracks from Kid Canaveral, Chvrches and Camera Obscura, however the pick of the bunch is their take on ‘Leslie’ by King Creosote. It’s a nice arrangement which the vocals of Kenny Anderson would fit on top of perfectly.
Tonight (27th June), the Cairn String Quartet take to the King Tuts stage, apparently as the first act of their musical ilk to do so. They will be ‘backed up’ on vocals with various special guests including the aforementioned Kid Canaveral and Fat Goth. I believe there are still a couple of tickets available which are £6.
Also, as part of the Scottish Album of the Year awards, the Cairn String Quartet recorded a version of each of the ten shortlisted musicians songs. You can view Django Django’s, ‘Introduction’ and the eventual SAY Award winner, RM Hubbert’s ‘We Radioed’ below or go and watch all ten over on the SAY Award youtube page.
Of course, you probably know already but last night, RM Hubbert’s ‘Thirteen Lost and Found’ won this year’s Scottish Album of the Year award. We’re over the moon here at Elba as Hubby is someone we’ve got to know through our long forgotten recorded sessions and also the gigs (what a line up!) at the dearly departed Liquid Ship. There has been much written about how deserving a winner the album was and we can only echo those sentiments but we’d also agree with Hubby that there is so much great music being made in Scotland that many of the shortlisted, and longlisted albums, would be worthy of the crown. Of the final ten, there were several that different parts of us were rooting for, which shows the strength of the entrants.
Indeed, we’re already a touch giddy at the prospect of who might be in with a chance of winning next year’s prize with the first six months of 2013 already stuimulating our listening with offerings from Rick Redbeard, Sparrow and the Workshop, The Pastels, Kid Canaveral, The Pictish Trail and Boards of Canada. Not to mention the six months of the year still remaining. And you never know, RM Hubbert might just be in with a shout next year too…
Today’s instalment of the Elba Annual features a blogger who has just found himself rated as hotter than Subo in The List’s Hot 100. I’ve never met Subo so I’ll give him the benefit of the doubt…
Peenko, or Lloyd as his family call him, has had as he calls it, ‘a batshit crazy’ year. I could list the amount of pies he’s put his fingers in this year, but he covers it all quite nicely in his Annual answers…
Album of The Year –I have been debating this in my head for months now, it’s been a really hard choice. There have been so many albums that have got me really excited this year, personal highlights would have to include Kid Canaveral, Admiral Fallow and RM Hubbert (although I am not sureif it came out this year). However, I can’t really see past the Phantom Band’s ‘Wants’. I never thought that they’d be able to better last years Checkmate Savage, but they have and then some.
Best Gig – Man that’s a tough one, there have been so many great gigs for me personally this year. What makes it doubly hard to select one is my god awful memory. Off the top of my head I really enjoyed The Unwinding Hours (both at Oran Mor and at the ABC as part of the Chemikal Underground birthday bash), the Kid Canaveral album launch at The Roxy (possibly the sweatiest I have ever been at a gig), The Phantom Band at Oran Mor (it’s amazing what a difference a new drummer can make). I guess my favourite gig would have to be the National at the Academy, that was pretty fucking special, coming out the first few drops of
snow made it feel almost magical.
Favourite New Band(s) –Another toughie, if we’re going for bands that I hadn’t heard of until this year my personal favourites would have to be we’re only afraid of NYC, Randolph’s Leap, the Son(s), I Build Collapsible Mountains and Hey Marseilles (the only non-Scottish band in there). I am sure that if you asked me this in a weeks time I’d have a totally new list of acts, there genuinely are so many amazing new bands in Scotland at the moment.
Musical Memories of 2010 –Where do I start?! this year alone things went batshit crazy for me, I guess putting on the first ever AvP gig would have to be pretty near the top, mainly cause we didn’t have a clue what we were doing and still loads of folk turned up. Starting not one, but two labels has got to be in there. I was really flattered by the number folk that took the time to write about Olive Grove (one of the labels). Alongside side that I guess I can’t leave out becoming the manager of Campfires in Winter and the wee stint I did on the radio for Fresh Air.
Also, I nearly forgot to mention goNorth and the crazy few days I had up there hanging out with Ian from the blog Have Fun At Dinner. Awesome times were had in Inverness, we even got to see Mimi from Shameless signing autographs in the Inverness Poundland. It doesn’t get much better than that!
Hopes/Plans for 2011 –For me personally I hope to have the time to keep the blog going, what with becoming a dad in the summer my time has been somewhat taken up. Then again I don’t want to be a rubbish dad, nobody wants their children to grow up hating them. Plus I need someone to pass the legacy on to!
As for the labels, I hope we can continue to find new up and coming talent and show them off to the world. At the moment we’ve almost agreed a deal for our next Olive Grove release which has got me pretty excited.
As well as that I am hoping to put on a few more gigs and record a few more sessions. I won’t be resting on my laurels that’s for sure!
Check out the Peenko Corporation Juggernaut at the following URL’s
Here’s our irregular guide to what we’d go to if money were no object this week. Except of course that September appears to be ‘spend plenty money on gig month’ and I’m actually heading out to a gig this week, and next, and then a couple the week after… Tuesday (7th Sept) It appears Tuesday is the night this week that will drag me out of the house as me and Kim are off to the Oran Mor to see The New Pornographers. We are both pretty big fans of Neko ADOBE ILLUSTRATOR CS6 Case’s solo stuff so as well as an appearance from her I’m quite looking forward to seeing the band. My knowledge of TNP is patchy but I did really like the first half of their most recent album. It got a bit weird on Side B. Also… Emily Jane White/Julia and The Doogans at 13th Note – £6 – We don’t know much about Ms White but the 13th Note’s website describes her as folk/blues/gothic, which appeals. We do however know that we love Julia, and her Doogans. Wednesday (8th September) The completely mental but brilliant Super Adventure Club are playing at Bloc. Nuff said. Also, if you have some pennies saved up or are feeling a little flush, go and see the lovely Isobel Campbell and Mark Lanegan at the ABC. Thursday (9th September) There’s a pretty sweet looking gig over at the 13th Note again featuring some our previous guests at Elba. Kochka, Blue Sky Archives, Campfires In Winter and Jonathan Sebastian Knight set things rocking from 8pm. You can win a pair of tickets over at Aye Tunes. Friday (10th September) Upbeat popsters Kid Canaveral kick off the weekend with an appearance at The Captains Rest whilst in a secret location somewhere in Glasgow, there’s a nice wee line up including two of the most technically brilliant musicians we’ve had at Elba, RM Hubbert and Finn Lemarinel, along with noiserv and Esperi. You can get tickets here and find out the location of said secret hideout. Saturday (11th September) Well, you could just stay in today. There was plenty to do Tuesday to Friday!!!!
Howdy people. This is another of those posts which start off with one thing in mind and then end up encompassing a whole load of stuff floating about my emails and head.
First up a shout out to fellow bloggers Peenko and Aye Tunes. They are having a first foray into the promotion game this Friday (27/4/10) with a rather good line up at the Captain’s Rest. Joining Campfires In Winter and Kid Canaveral are Mitchell Museum who have been wearing out my iPod in the last few weeks. Tickets are £5 on the door but if you contact either blogger in advance, they’ll knock a quid off the price cos they are just like that!
Also gigging this week are young upstarts The Girobabies who launch their brand new EP ‘Social Not Working’ with a launch party this Friday at The Buff Club. It all kicks off at 7pm and only costs the princely sum of £3. You can have a wee listen to the EP on their bandcamp page.
If the previous two gigs weren’t enough for a Friday night, there’s an absolute corker going down at our home from home The Liquid Ship. Gracing the basement once again is the wonderful Julia and the Doogans along with Stevie and The Moon and Lovers Turn To Monsters. Cracking line up, I would presume gig times will run as we run it, so first act will be on at 9pm.
Then on Saturday night, Eagleowl take on the Captains Rest in the second leg of their Edinburgh/Glasgow EP launch parties. Support comes from My Kappa Roots and Rob St John. You can pre order the EP on their bandcamp page.
The readers of this blog don’t need to be told by us that Glasgow’s music scene is buzzing and the guys over at UNESCO City of Music are putting together a music stream aiming to promote all that’s good and local going on in the city. They are looking for submissions which can be uploaded to their soundcloud page or sent in by good old fashioned mail to the following address;
Glasgow City of Music
For further information you can email email@example.com
The Glasgow Oxjam Team are on the lookout for people wanting to help out at this years Oxjam takeover, which will take place in October. There is more details on their myspace blog and you can download an application on the Oxjam website. I went along to the takeover last year and saw some great bands, Yahweh being one that stands out the memory. The best thing is that it’s all for a great cause.