Friday 16 July 2010

Kowalskiy's Free Monthly 5-track Scottish EP #1

Mark your calendars folks! The 16th of each month shall forever be known as Kowalskiy's Free 5-track Scottish EP Day. Catchy, eh? From now on, I'll endeavour to bring you a free EP featuring 5 cracking exclusive/rare tracks from some of Scotland's best up-and-coming bands. For the first in what will hopefully be a series of many, I asked 5 of my favourite artists at the moment to contribute. For some reason I'm still trying to suss out, they all said a very enthusiastic yes!

These kind, brave souls, and their tracks appearing on EP #1, are:

1. Curators - "Turn The Lights Down" (from their eagerly-anticipated, as-of-yet untitled, debut album)

"As far as Lights goes, it is relatively straight forward. I suppose you could say that it's about domestic disharmony being overcome by hearing a good song on the radio, but that sounds a bit wanky. Let's call it a love song to the art of the single." - Jon Dick (Curators)

2. Punch & The Apostles - "Wintertime Blues" (from their upcoming "Meat In Summerland" album)

"The song was written during the winter of 08/09 whilst three of the band were living in a small cottage in Ayrshire. We had no heating or hot water because we couldn't afford to buy oil, so would huddle round the fireplace as late as possible. Because of the lack of heating we started developing damp problems, with mould appearing on shoes, jackets and bedding. It was great in some ways to have that seclusion, but the conditions made it pretty unbearable at times. We lasted the winter out and then moved back to the city in April. That's the song." - Rory Haye (Punch & the Apostles)

3. Arran Arctic - "Ask For It" (opening track from his debut album)

"This track appeared on the first Arran Arctic record (By The Sea) way back in 2005. 'Ask For It' was one of my earliest songs, which I'd originally written because a friend of mine at school was quite a prolific songwriter, and I felt guilty because I thought I was somehow stealing his thunder. You can find videos of this track being performed live at I may re-record it in order to perform it live alongside some of the new tracks from the forthcoming album 'In My Hands'." - Arran Southall (Arran Arctic)

4. The Martial Arts - "Empty Out Here (demo)" (which was only recorded and mastered this week.)

"This is the demo for new song 'Empty Out Here' as recorded in my kitchen by myself, though I got Gregor Barclay in to add some handclaps and Nicola West, also of How To Swim, in to play some 'Good Vibrations' cello on the outro - let's face it, you can't do that with Reason. Joe Kane kindly mastered it and I used Jeremy Mills' bass guitar after he left it at mine. The song itself has some Spector-like ambitions with the tiniest hint of Squeeze's 'Maidstone' thrown in for any Record Collector readers to spot." - Paul Kelly (The Martial Arts)

5. Cancel The Astronauts - "Could You Love Me? (live)" (rare live version of a previously unreleased track)

"The inspiration behind Could You Love Me? is, like every CTA song (sadly), an unrequited love song. Awkward boy meets gorgeous girl, chases her around the schoolyard, and years later hides her body in his fridgefreezer. We've all been there. Recorded live at Studio Kay in summer 2009, it will probably be a B-side one day. It has a delightful guitar riff, even if Kieran does say so himself." - Matt Riley (Cancel The Astronauts)
Thanks to each and every one of them for giving up their time, and song, to get this idea off the ground. I can't thank them enough!

Anyway, for those who like the sound of it, the EP is now up for free download on my shiny new bandcamp site. Hope you enjoy it!

As a warning to all you bands out there, I have a shortlist for EP #2 and I'll be in touch soon! Although if you have a mouthwatering exclusive or rare track and fancy appearing on a future EP, feel free to send me a wee email.

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