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The Scotsman, Under the Radar, June 2014

Published In The Scotsman Newspaper: Monday 2nd June 2014 | Words by Derick Mackinnon and Olaf Furniss

Neon Waltz, The Scotsman Newspaper, Track of the Month, June 2014

Hailing from Wick, Neon Waltz are one of the most exciting bands in Scotland; their single Sombre Fayre is our track of the month. Recently signing a deal with Noel Gallagher’s manager and scoring airplay from Zane Lowe and Huw Stephens on BBC Radio 1 plus festival slots for T In The Park, Wickerman, Tramlines and Y Not Festivals, things are looking incredibly promising. We’ll be down the front for their showcase at this week’s goNORTH Festival (Hootannanys, Inverness, on Wednesday). Having been together for just one year, the Highland six-piece have been busy creating powerful psychedelic soundscapes in an isolated croft on the North Sea coast. With beautiful and haunting scenery in equal measure, the video below showcases the newcomers perfectly. Visit for more info.

Neon Waltz warmed up for their goNORTH appearance on Saturday night, when they supported Edinburgh band The Merrylees for the launch of their single Forever More. Produced by ace crooner and Mercury Prize nominee Richard Hawley, the band’s line up includes the son of Rab King, who fronted cult capital outfit The Scars in the eighties. The single is out today on Neu! Reekie! Records, which is the label launched by the duo behind the excellent cultural events of the same name. Their next bash takes place in the Scottish National Gallery on 13 June and includes Stanley Odd, Hollie McNish as well as Tam Dean Burn and Optimo’s JD Twitch. This will be followed on 29 June with a German-themed night in partnership with the Edinburgh International Film Festival at Summerhall. Visit

Also set to combine music with other art forms is a festival hosted by Edinburgh’s Electric Circus, titled Electric Nights, which takes place from 14-18 June. The varied programme includes electronic music, experimental folk and a whole array of art. Highlights include a SAY Award night on 16 June with RM Hubbard, Neil Pennycook from Meursault and the 2013 Arts Prize winner Gregor Morrison, plus a night dedicated to women in the arts with a mini art exhibition from musician Rachel Sermanni and photography from Jannica Honey on 17 June. Visit

Tenement TV films live music sessions from a tenement flat in Glasgow which it then broadcasts via YouTube. To date, it has had more than two million views, with early sessions from big stars like Bastille, Passenger and Jake Bugg as well as plenty of Scottish talent including; Model Aeroplanes, Prides, Fatherson, Nina Nesbitt and Admiral Fallow. The latest development is the announcement Tenement TV will be filming an eight-part music series to be broadcast on STV Glasgow, a new channel launching today. You can watch the series on Freeview channel 23, Sky (117) and Virgin (159) and also online by visiting

This year’s T Break stage again looks set to provide a platform for some of Scotland’s most exciting new acts to perform at T In The Park and includes Model Aeroplanes, Birdhead, Tuff Love and Fat Goth, all showcased at our Wide Days event. We are also looking forward to seeing Naked and Teen Canteen, who release their single You’re Still Mine on 16 June. As in previous years, the festival organisers appear to have neglected to add the line up to the website, but anyone visiting an download a track by each act.

Finally, The East End Social celebrates Scottish culture in unusual locations in Glasgow’s East End during the Commonwealth Games. Running from June until August with artists like Casual Sex, the festival culminates with a performance from Mogwai in late August. See

•  Olaf Furniss and Derick Mackinnon run Scottish music industry social night, Born To Be Wide. The organisation will host a panel titled Building A Team, and a Q&A with musician turned film-maker Richard Jobson, at goNORTH in Inverness. On 28 June daytime youth music business event, Off The Record, takes place in Kilmarnock’s Palace Theatre, and at Edinburgh’s Roxy Assembly the following day. See

The Scotsman, Under The Radar, March 2014

Published In The Scotsman Newspaper: Monday 3rd March 2014 | Words by Derick Mackinnon and Olaf Furniss

TUFF LOVE, The Scotsman Track of the Month, March 2014

Tuff Love’s EP arrived in the post last week, complete with a hand-written note from Johnny Lynch [aka Pictish Trail], himself no stranger to readers of this column. This old-school approach to promotion befits a release which will excite fans of eighties indie popsters such as the Shop Assistants, as well as subsequent American bands such as The Breeders. Tuff Love is the latest act to come out on Lynch’s new label, Lost Map Records. Sweet Discontent, along with four other tracks is released on 5th May on 10” white vinyl, and will coincide with several live appearances. Expect to see these great newcomers at a summer festival near you.

Hidden Door festival, a multi-arts event covering music, theatre, art installations, film and more returns to the capital with a jam-packed nine-day programme from 28th March to 5th April. This year the festival will transform 24 disused vaults on Market Street into a unique variety of pop-up entertainment venues. Some highlights include a Lost Map records showcase featuring our track of the month act Tuff Love plus label mates Kid Canaveral, Pictish Trail and Randolph’s Leap on 31st March. There is also a night programmed by the innovative Tinderbox Orchestra (2nd April) and music subscription service Ten Tracks (3rd April). Meursault, Miaoux Miaoux and LAW feature on 4th April. For full info visit

The Wee Dub Festival also returns to Edinburgh from 7-9th March, with a selection of acts spanning the full spectrum of this reggae sub-genre. Since its launch in 2011 the event has actually turned into the quite big dub festival, with gigs taking place in venues including the Liquid Room, Summerhall, The Caves, Teviot Underground and Studio 24. Local outfits include Mungo’s Hi-fi and Samson Sounds, and there is a kid’s Dub Station at the Hemma Bar on Saturday, as well as a Dub Clinic workshop at Red Dog Music shop in the Grassmarket. Visit

In the Highlands, The Ironworks have teamed up with goNORTH Festival for Ironworks Easter Showcase featuring local talent. Artists announced so far include Garden of Elks, Dylan Tierney, Lionel, with goNORTH due to add a band from their showcase list which is finalised in early April. Visit

The Scottish Alternative Music Awards or SAMAs, created by former UWS music business student Richy Muirhead in 2010, takes place on Friday 7th March at The Garage in Glasgow, celebrating 5 years. Live entertainment comes courtesy of Model Aeroplanes, The LaFontaines, Brown Bear and The Bandits and Bear Arms. Full info including nominated bands in each of the seven categories can be found at

The city of Perth hosts the Words and Music festival from 14-15th March, a collaboration between Perth College and Horsecross’ Talent Hub for Scottish Traditional and Gaelic Music. The event is a two day industry event not unlike our own Wide Days, complete with seminars, talks and free live music showcases. Some highlights of the live programme include Model Aeroplanes, Pinact and Fatherson at The Twa Tams on 14th and Siobhan Wilson at Greyfriars Bar and The Jellyman’s Daughter at The Green Room on the 15th. Visit for full info.

Expat Scot, Craig Ferguson has long been a champion of Scottish acts on his long-running talk show on US television. However, Glasgow band Roddy Hart & the Lonesome Fire impressed him so much he invited them to stay for a week-long residency, playing tracks from their album. The story was broken by influential trade magazine, Hollywood Reporter and footage from the first show’s performance can be seen here

•  Olaf Furniss and Derick Mackinnon run Scottish music industry social night, Born to Be Widethe next event takes place on Thursday 6 March at Edinburgh’s Electric Circus titled How To Make Friends and Influence People. The night will feature a discussion about building contacts and networking within the music business followed by guests playing their favourite music. See for more details