now browsing by tag


The Scotsman, Under The Radar, August 2013

Copyright The Scotsman Newspaper, read direct on Scotsman.com click HERE or photo below

Published Monday 29th July 2013

Sparrow & The Workshop, The Scotsman Track of the Month, August 2013

We recently saw Sparrow And The Workshop perform at one of the Dewar’s House Experimental Batch gigs, hosted in Edinburgh’s Caves venue, and were highly impressed. The Glasgow trio combine female vocals with some fantastic guitar sounds and crashing drums. Their album Murderopolis was released earlier this summer on Song, By Toad Records. The single
The Faster You Spin

is one of the finest tracks we have heard this year and boasts an excellent video poking fun at Britain’s leading politicians. See the band perform at Henry’s Cellar Bar in Edinburgh on 10 August. www.sparrowandtheworkshop.co.uk

Gone are the days when music found itself sidelined at the Edinburgh Fringe, with key venues renting themselves out to a host of other performers. This year several independent labels and promoters will be hosting a wide range of shows featuring both local talent and artists from further afield.

Among the most ambitious is the Pale Imitation Festival hosted by Song, By Toad Records which is set to promote nine evenings at Henry’s, beginning with William Henry Miller on 1 August, and ending with eagleowl on 31 August. The gigs have a strong focus on Scottish talent, as well as hosting several acts from further afield.

Glasgow-based Armellodie Records will also be using Henry’s to host two label nights featuring some of their excellent roster. Taking place on 7 and 15 August, participating acts include Le Reno Amps, the excellent punk of Cuddley Shark, Gastric Band and Saint Max & The Fanatics.

For those who prefer dubstep and bass, the White Knuckle Collective will host an extravaganza at the Collective Night in Sneaky Pete’s on 11 August including several acts on Edinburgh label Abaga Records. These include TeKlo, Tactus and Dunt. The night is free and is on until 5am.

Catering for anyone who prefers to enjoy their music in the daytime, Electric Circus is programming a mini festival titled Born And Bred which takes place from 12-15 August and features a series of lunchtime performances by acts including Carrie Mac, Sienna and Donald Macdonald & The Islands.

Meanwhile, the organisers behind Edinburgh’s multi-venue Haddowfest are to host a series of gigs under the banner of Haddow On The Fringe. Broken Records are among the Scottish headliners, as are Kid Canaveral who will be performing with the amazing Cairn Quartet. The latter will also be appearing in their larger guise, the Electric String Orchestra, when they perform with Edinburgh hip-hop stars, Stanley Odd, at the Queen’s Hall on 2 August.

Staying in the capital, music will again be incorporated into the Edinburgh International Book Festival with numerous artists participating in this year’s event. For followers of the Scottish scene we recommend two of the Jura Unbound events. On 14 August John Lemke and Poppy Ackroyd perform as part of the Writers’ Block evening, which includes spoken word recitals inspired by their debut albums. On 20 August, veteran Radio Scotland presenter, Vic Galloway, reads from his debut book Songs In The Key Of Fife, which focuses on growing up with the East Neuk scene which spawned the likes of KT Tunstall, the Beta Band and the Fence Collective.

Several well-known Scottish bands and artists, including Biffy Clyro, KT Tunstall and The Proclaimers have been showing their support for the creation of a Scottish Music Hall of Fame to be built in Glasgow. The stars have filmed nomination videos detailing acts they believe deserve to be inducted, and the public can vote by visiting www.myhof3.co.uk

Long-standing Glasgow label Chemikal Underground has been given Creative Scotland support to run a diverse range of music activities for the next 12 months to coincide with the Commonwealth Games in 2014. The initiative will focus on the city’s Bridgeton area, where the company has been based since it was formed 16 years ago, and promises to use a wide variety of unconventional locations including parks, train stations, sports centres, town halls, pubs, bandstands and schools, as well as regular venues. A combination of international, emerging and unknown acts will feature

•  Olaf Furniss and Derick Mackinnon host the Born To Be Wide music business and showcase evenings. Their next event takes place on 4 August at Edinburgh’s Electric Circus and features ten minute sets by ten Scottish acts who are playing during the Fringe. See www.borntobewide.co.uk for more details

The Scotsman, Under the Radar, October 2012

The latest band to catch our attention is four-sometimes-five-piece alt-rock band, Fatherson from Kilmarnock with their song First Born:

They’ve just returned from a triumphant showcase in front of top music industry executives as part of the Yellow Phone conference in Milwaukee, USA and they embark on an extensive tour throughout October. With an explosive live show, excellent songwriting, plenty of know-how when it comes to selling gig tickets and clever social networking competitions to select bands to support them, Fatherson are showing plenty of promise in the ones to watch category. Plus, they share a manager with Idlewild. For more information, see

Taking place in Thurso from 25-28 October, Wave North is a cultural festival with a difference, not least for the brave move of outdoor film screenings at the harbour. Activities also include surfing lessons, skateboard workshops, comedy, storytelling and plenty live music. Some of the venues participating include Newmarket Bar, Skinandis Nightclub, Ynot Bar & Grill and Caithness Horizons. Artists performing include We Were Promised Jetpacks, Verse Metrics, James Mackenzie, Iain McLaughlin & The Outsiders, Running With Scissors and our track of the month band Fatherson . Visit www.facebook.com/wave.north

It seems strange that somebody would live next door to several long-standing venues known for playing loud music and then complain about the noise. But in such cases, it always seems to be the venues and the music-loving public who lose out. The latest victim is Edinburgh’s Sneaky Pete’s which has carved out a well-deserved reputation for promoting emerging talent. Due to noise complaints it will now have to make-do with acoustic gigs. www.sneakypetes.co.uk

Fortunately, a new central Edinburgh location is now being used to host music events. The undercroft of St John’s Church on Lothian Road, which is run by Henderson’s vegetarian restaurant, will feature the monthly Bad Fun nights promoted by the city’s Song, By Toad label. The next event takes place on 26 October and includes a “supergroup” comprising James Yorkston, Rob St John and members of Broken Records, Sparrow & The Workshop and Meursault. See www.brownpapertickets.com/event/282469

Also providing a shot in the arm for the capital’s music scene is Haddowfest which features numerous acts previously mentioned in this column including Mass Concensus, Katie Sutherland, Meursault, Discopolis, the 1004s and numerous other artists. The multi-venue event takes place on October 28 and promises a great day out for lovers of emerging talent, www.haddowfest.co.uk

Reloaded Fest returns to Stirling’s premier music venue, The Tolbooth, from 5-6 October. Hosted by Jim Gellatly, the line up features Broken Records, Song of Return, Errors, Fatherson as well as The Mouse That Ate The Cat (with the former frontman of The Dykeenies), Six Storeys High and more. Visit http://tolbooth.stirling.gov.uk/tolbooth

Fife-based duo Panda Su have landed another song on a Hollywood blockbuster. Alphabet Song features in House At The End of the Street which was released in cinemas worldwide recently. The official promotional video was shot in Lochee Laundrette in Dundee

Glasgow blog Peenko celebrates its fourth birthday with the release of a limited edition mini-album from Randolph’s Leap, out on Peenko Records. The news comes amid the official announcement the band have signed to Fence Records and will launch their new EP Hermit as part of Fence’s Buff Tracks EP series at the Glad Cafe in Shawlands on 26 October, with support from Fence Collective artists, visit www.fencerecords.com

Although this column usually focuses on Scottish events, we are happy to bend the rules for Frontier Festival which takes place in Berwick-upon-Tweed from 9-14 October. Hosted by the musicians behind the Travelled Music label, it promises to provide an interesting snapshot of the diverse talent around the Borders, see www.frontierfest.co.uk

Finally, former track of the month band PAWS release their debut album Cokefloat on Fatcat Records next Monday. Their official launch party takes place tonight at the CCA in Glasgow, followed by a UK tour. Visit www.facebook.com/wehavepaws

Olaf Furniss and Derick Mackinnon run the Born To Be Wide music industry seminars. The next event takes place at Edinburgh’s Electric Circus tonight, with a panel in partnership with digital music distribution service EmuBands discussing everything you need to know about releasing your own music.