Tuesday, 31 July 2012

Battle Of The Bands: Round 3

In case you missed last week's bout, here's a quick, unbiased recap... Team Kowalskiy, helped out by The Pictish Trail absolutely trounced the boys from Brazil Exists in the Scottish Fiction corner!  And in doing so, took a one point lead going into this, the third round of Battle Of The Bands.  I'm well prepared though for the inevitable backlash...

I was quietly confident that Dolfinz (or DðlfinZ... or maybe even DOLFiNZ), my Stonehaven duo could hold their own against whoever Neil from Scottish Fiction had to offer.   Their 11 songs on SoundCloud and very impressive Twitter Follow Ratio gave me more than a fighting chance.  But, as it was his turn to choose the three attributes we'd be playing with, Neil would start as favourite.  It was by no means a foregone conclusion though.  Neil's hopes of a first victory rest with Glasgow sextet Randolph's Leap.  Here's hoping Neil doesn't pick Number of Members!

Before we do battle, let's have a quick recap of the rules.  You can read them in full over here though!  This round, Neil will choose three attributes.  For each of the three, the person with the highest value gets one point, with both of us getting a half-point in the event of a draw.  Losers get hee-haw!  In the end, Scottish Fiction chose Number of Members (BASTARD!!!), SoundCloud Tracks, and Twitter Follow Ratio... in other words, there's an outside chance for ol' Team Kowalskiy.  As before, all stats below were correct at the time of battle.  All that's left for me to say is ding ding, Round 3...

And the result of Round 3... is a drubbing!  Scottish Fiction wins 3-0 on account of Randolph's Leap and their freakishly high stats.  I did consider a quick email to the Dolfinz lads to get them to start unfollowing folk and uploading new tracks, but figured that may not be in keeping with the Top Trumps spirit.  Besides, on any other day, their stats would have been more than enough to win the day.  So alas, Neil has leveled the battle at one win apiece having drawn Round 1.

Well played Sir... you're mine in a fortnight's time though!

But, as always, it's not about me or Neil (not much anyway!).  It's about these two fine bands.  So here's why I roped in the wonderful Dolfinz.  If you head over here, you can get your hands on their split 12" album from Song, by Toad Records.  Alongside four of their brilliant lo-fi, scuzzy tracks, including Kitsch Craft below, there's four tracks from PAWS, Sex Hands and Waiters.  It's a fantastic record.

Now onto those pesky, glory-stealing folksters from Randolph's Leap.  How can you be mad at them though!?  For starters, you can't not instantly love frontman Adam Ross.  Especially when he pens lyrics like this! 

They recently put out Introducing... Randolph's Leap which you can get from Fence Records with a special bonus EP.  Be quick though... the ones on their Bandcamp have already sold out.  You can also still grab a download of their The Curse Of The Haunted Headphones album from here.

I think that's all the plugs over.  So, the series is tied once again.  Just you wait 'til Round 4 though Mr. Fiction... just you wait!

Sunday, 29 July 2012

Coastal Skid Spy Wok v18.0

Apologies for how quiet things have been on here of late.  I've been a busy bee, but I'll try and get my finger out so you're not forced to read two of these notcasts in succession again!  What with guest hosts and festival specials, it's been three weeks now since I had a proper trawl through SoundCloud and shared my favourite findings with you.  So here goes...

...starting with a beautiful, bearded man with whom I enjoyed a very, very sweet victory recently.  Something I plan on repeating this Tuesday.  Scottish Fiction... you've been well warned! 

Yup, none other than The Pictish Trail.  Around now, he's probably just about cleaned up the last of the mess left over from last weekend's Fence Records Away Game.  From what I hear, it was predictably spectacular.   Michael Rocket will feature on Johnny's upcoming 7" EP, The Summer Is Empty Of Idiots, which you can pre-order here as part of the Buff Tracks series.  Moving onto someone I've not featured on Kowalskiy in quite a while.  I noticed recently that the lovable Ramisco Maki Maki Rocking Horse had uploaded a new, FREE track on his website.  As per usual, it's brilliant.  You can download Nowhere Know Where from his site and then head back here to have a listen to this 'orned beast from his debut album One Zero One Zero One Zero.

Strange, strange man... but we wouldn't have him any other way!  We'll continue this week's whistle-stop tour of SoundCloud with this gorgeous, new, acoustic offering from Penguins Kill Polar Bears with a little help from i build collapsible mountains.

A big surprise this one, but a very refreshing change of direction. Saying that, you still cannae beat a bit of this from February's Vessels & Veins EP which you can snap up over here.

Now here's a lovely new one from Bottle Of Steven, him what is also in Bottle Of Evil, who "was playing around with good intent and this fell out".  True story!  It's free too, so be sure to grab a copy while you can. 

While I'm on topic, as I was getting those links above, I happened across this from Benbecula Records... yoink!  Right, time for one more track.  'Tis only a wee one.  You'll all know I love How To Swim.  Well, along with the wonderful trio of The Paraffins, The Plimptons and Gums! (and others of course), they've contributed to The Littlest Album 4.0, a collection of one-minute tracks available on vinyl from September.  You can pre-order it over here if this tickles your fancy.

And as I've not has Apology Corner for a while... supergroup Gums! have a free EP out which I keep forgetting to feature.  You can get your hands on it over here.  Tell them I sent you!

Sunday, 22 July 2012

Coastal Skid Spy Wok v17.0

Time for the latest notcast now.  I'll level with you... I've not really paid much attention to the recent goings-on on SoundCloud this week.  So, instead of the usual, this weekend the notcast will have more of a Thistly twist.  This time next Saturday, down in Dunbar, Thistly Fest 2012 will be well under way with one of the finest line-ups there is going.  So here's my pick of the acts...

First up, the organisers also made good use of SoundCloud and ran a competition to pick the final two acts for the festivities.  In the end, the lovely Yaya Club and Cafe Disco (who are just as lovely) triumphed.  Both great choices if you ask me.  So here's Darren Vincent, a.k.a. Yaya Club to kick us off.

Darren's also put up this video to accompany the track.  Next up, is Glasgow's Cafe Disco with their brilliant Terra Nova.  If my snooping has served me right, they'll be playing the acoustic stage.  If you're planning on heading to the festival... best check for yourselves though.

As well as these two, there's a whole host of amazing Scottish bands on show.  None more amazing than the band of the hour, Meursault.  Their new album Something For The Weakened is their best yet.  Gone may be 'computer guy' and with him, their unique glitchy, electro (just don't call them electro-folk) side, but that's not stopped Mr. Pennycook from producing one of Scotland's finest albums in years!  Here's lead single Flittin' to prove my point.

Be sure to get a hold of the single and/or album over at Song, by Toad Records on CD or vinyl.  As well as Meursault, Edinburgh bands FOUND, Capitals and Woodenbox will also be gracing Belhaven Farm with their presence.  All of whom are firm favourites at Kowalskiy HQ, but I guess I don't seem to feature FOUND as much as the others... so here's one from them... Anti-Climb Paint from their album Factorycraft.

...which you can buy here.  You should also head over here to find out more about #UNRAVEL... possibly one of the most intriguing gigs of the year!  Should probably mention though that Woodenbox have a superb new EP out called The Vanishing Act, and Capitals have new single All These Years out too. 

Last track now from the fantastic Kitty The Lion.  You can get hold of their recent single Duck! over on iTunes, and while you're there I'd recommend you get hold of the others too.  You'll be happier for it!

So that's just a taste of what to expect if you're off to Thistly Fest.  All the info is over here including the full line-up.   Good food, good cider, and great music... what more could you ask for?!   You can still get tickets over here if it tickles your fancy!

Tuesday, 17 July 2012

Battle Of The Bands: Round 2

Time for Round 2 of Battle Of The Bands, the Scottish music duel to end them all!  A fortnight ago, myself and Neil from Scottish Fiction pitted our wits against each other in the opening bout.  Hair was pulled, tears were shed... by both parties, as it ended up a draw with Neil's Seams proving the Top Trumps equals of my very own French Wives.  That was then though...

Since that stalemate, Team Kowalskiy have been holed up on a deserted isle in training and on a healthy diet of raw Eiggs.  That's actually half true as I've roped in The Pictish Trail to fight my corner with me.   Neil's getting his 'hawners' from Stirling's Brazil Exists.  To think, they were once firm favourites around these parts.  Do you know what else exists?!  Your beds!  And now they've been made, you're gonna have to lie in them... now it's personal boys!

Before we do battle, here's a quick recap of the all-important rules.  You can read them in full over here though!  As Neil had first dibs on choosing the three attributes we'd be playing with last time, this round it's my turn.  I'm banking on Johnny's 'longevity' and gone for Years Since Formation, Twitter Follow Ratio and Average Age.  For each of the three, the person with the highest gets one point, with both getting a half-point in the event of a draw.  Losers... well they get zilch!  Here's how these two great Scottish musical pugilists shape up.  As before, all stats were correct at the time of battle.  All that's left is for me to say ding ding, Round 2...

And the result of Round 2... by a 3 points to zero whitewash is... Team Kowalskiy!  My one-man Lynch-mob had those Stirlingshire lads pinned up against a Fence all through the contest and gave each of those five a bunch of Fifes!  And more importantly, as a result, Scottish Fiction is now Trail-ing in the series by one!  Seems I Pict well this time 'round.  Johnny Lynch certainly brought his A(way) Game tonight... I'll stop now.

Has to be said though that this was my turn to pick, so the ball is back in Neil's court in a fortnight's time and I'll need to prepare for what is sure to be a big backlash.  Again though, it's not really about me or Neil... it's all about the music!  So, here's the real reason why we both chose the folk we chose.  First up, it's The Pictish Trail.  Now, it goes without saying, as he's one of the main men over at Fence Records, he can't do wrong in my eyes, or ears.  He'll be releasing The Summer Is Empty Of Idiots on the 6th of August as part of Fence's new Buff Tracks 7" EP series.  My appetite's already been whetted by the single Michael Rocket and the brilliant video which goes along with it.

If you're lucky enough to be going to Away Game (jammy buggers!) up in Eigg this weekend, then Johnny will be one of the headliners.  Remember to pack your wellies!

On to Brazil Exists now.  I love these boys.  I think I've mentioned that a few times already this year.  So much so I'll forgive them for siding with the opposition!  Their Hermit EP was released a while back and is available from all good online downloadists... like iTunes and Amazon MP3.  Here's the pick of the bunch.

So that's it for this round.  Team Kowalskiy will take a narrow one point lead into Round 3 next fortnight.  Can Scottish Fiction level the scores, or will my next band further compound his misery?!  Find out on the 31st of July.

Monday, 16 July 2012

KEP#25 - ArmellodieP

Click the artwork to go to the EP page!
So... funny story!  For last months' EP, I sent Al over at Armellodie Records a wee email asking whether one of his roster would be up for contributing.  He only went and offered me a full EP's worth!  Not only has it spared me a few more grey hairs from last-minute track-hunting stress, but every track he's sent is brilliant.  So, a huge thanks to Al and the eight bands involved.  Now, I know what you're thinking... EIGHT!?  Well there's a very good reason for that.  At the start of August, all eight will be appearing in various combinations at a set of Armellodie On Tour gigs around Scotland.  All the details are below, but first, here's the bands on... ArmellodieP.   

1.  The Hazey Janes - Southern Lawns (Alternative Version)

"A considerably different rendition of the album version; an idea we’ve had in the drawer for while now but only just got round to finishing. It may just be the phased mellotron, but there’s something Chris Bell sounding about it. Featuring, amongst other things, accordion, glockenspiel, harmonica, lap steel and said mellotron." - Andrew Mitchell (The Hazey Janes)

2.  Le Reno Amps - Cottonmouth Rock (In Session)

"This live version of Cottonmouth Rock was recorded for the Big British Castle around Easter time 2011. Le Reno Amps have always been a real carefree live band which seems to resonate with those lucky few, and I mean few, that come to see us play. This one’s a vicious and raw holler through the drink addled thoughts of a man cuckolded. I think it’s as a good a break-up song as any in our bleeding heart cannon, it’s got beef, and as Frank Zappa once sang, broken hearts are for assholes." - Al Nero (Le Reno Amps)

3.  Super Adventure Club - Dog With Two Dicks (In Session)

"Dog With Two Dicks Dog With Two Dicks Dog With Two Dicks Dog With Two Dicks Dog With Two Dicks Dog With Two Dicks This song is yet to be formally put to tape but has been a part of our live set for a good while. This version was recorded for Dumbstruck Studios and you can watch it here Dog With Two Dicks Dog With Two Dicks Dog With Two Dicks Dog With Two Dicks Dog With Two Dicks Dog With Two Dicks Dog With Two Dicks Dog With Two Dicks." - Mandy Clarke (Super Adventure Club)

4.  The Douglas Firs - Frameworks

"This is a song from ‘ep1’, a collection of recordings we made over the past couple of years. I really hate describing songs, particularly when they are criticising humanity and exposing my ever increasing misanthropy but here goes! Frameworks is about the difficulty with thinking outside of everything we have ever learned (or, rather, been told). on a microscopic level, everything is mimetic - even these words, for instance." - Neil Insh (The Douglas Firs)

5.  Trapped Mice - Night Of Broken Glass

"I think this might count as a protest song, but I'm not sure. I'd been in Berlin on holiday, and was trying to sort through some of the stuff I'd seen at various historical monuments and memorials etc. I’m really happy with this recording; I put the synth part high in the mix, and hopefully it stops it sounding like too much of a folk country hoe-down. I also hope the bold deployment of a shaky egg doesn't detract too much from the mood of what is supposed to be a fairly emotional song or something. Night of Broken Glass is taken from our forthcoming debut album, ‘Winter Sun’ out this winter funnily enough." - Ian Tilling (Trapped Mice)

6.  The Scottish Enlightenment - Pascal (In Session)

"A song about gambling. We recorded this version for Tom Ravenscroft in the depths of winter 2010/11, when mucky snow was piled high along the roadsides and people slept in their wellies. Our perennial comrade Dan Lyth and I dragged guitars, accordions, drums and things on sledges from the bottom of Dunfermline (the wee Asda district) to the very top (by the hospital) to record at a friends house. Roads and bridges were shut and only two of the band could be there, so Dan joined in. Then we sledged a lot of the way home." - David Moyes (The Scottish Enlightenment)

7.  Chris Devotion & The Expectations - Dead Scene (Demo)

"This was one of the B Sides to our debut single and was only available on the CD, which could only be purchased direct from us, so this is the first time it has been available for people to download. We recorded it on the hoof with the guys from Small Scale Collisions as they had use of a few hours in a studio, so they snuck us in and we bashed it out. It's about privileged, close minded idiots, a type of person you meet a lot in the music scene." - Chris Devotion

8.  Cuddly Shark - Overpriced

"This is the first song to see the light of day from our forthcoming record. A couple of months ago we were 95% done with the album, recording and mixing, when the hard-drive containing the recordings caught fire, literally our tunes were smokin’! This was the only recording that was fully salvaged. We decided to get it out into the ether before anything else went wrong and made a little video to go with it." - Colin Reid (Cuddly Shark)

Talk about kicking off my third year of free EP is style.  Once again, a huge thanks to all at Armellodie.  It goes without saying I love this label!  Here's those seven dates, the venues and the bands taking the stage.  Facebook events pages too, if you click on the links...

Thursday 2nd Aug - Wee Red Bar, Edinburgh (Super Adventure Club, The Douglas Firs and Trapped Mice)
Friday 3rd Aug - Duke's Corner, Dundee (The Hazey Janes, Le Reno Amps and Cuddly Shark)
Friday 10th Aug - The Steamboat, Lossiemouth (Chris Devotion & The Expectations, Le Reno Amps & Cuddly Sharks)
Saturday 11th Aug - The Thunderton, Elgin (Cuddly Shark, Le Reno Amps and Chris Devotion & The Expectations)

The Dundee, Lossiemouth and Elgin dates are FREE entry too!

So that's that.  All that leaves me to do is remind you to download the EP (and the other 24 while you're there) and pay Armellodie a wee visit.  If you're in a band and wanna record a special version of something for me, or contribute something else to one of my future EPs you think might tickle my fancy, then you can send me a wee email (kowalskiy2@gmail.com). 

Sunday, 15 July 2012

Coastal Skid Spy Wok... with Jo & Scott

The eagle-eyed among you will have noticed my lack of notcast last Sunday. The reasons for that were two-fold. First up, I was busy watching Andy Murray becoming Roger Federer's bitch... again, and secondly, I forgot to 'Reply-All' when sending some questions to the mysterious Jo & Scott mentioned in the blog title. That's Jo Schornikow of The Shivers fame and Brooklyn NYC's finest lo-fi artist Scott Rudd. They're both over here playing a few festivals, including next weekend's Away Game up on the Isle of Eigg. While they're here, they've been recruited by Peenko to play his latest gig alongside the mighty Mitchell Museum.   So, I thought I'd get them to tell you all about it, let you hear a few of their tracks, and hear what's tickling their fancy recently.  First up, here's one of Jo's brilliant solo efforts which you can download for free!

I can't mention Jo and not talk about how great The Shivers' album More.  Anything Fence Records bring out is always gonna be pretty special, and this is no different.  You can get your copy from those Fifers over here.  Right, back to the topic at hand.  Before we hear from Jo and Scott, here's some Bullshit Love from the man himself.  'Tis also free!

A few not-so-probing questions now.  Here goes...

Kowalskiy: First up, how'd the idea to do this gig come about?
Scott: It was really Jo's idea. I believe it stemmed from an offer The Shivers got to play the Away Game for Fence Records. Keith couldn't make it due to other commitments and Jo had a bunch of great solo stuff that was ready to be released to the world - we built the tour around that.
Jo: We basically booked the tour around the Fence Away Game Festival, the Imploding Inevitable Festival (which was amazing) and the Cloudspotting Festival. We have been very lucky to be helped by some amazing people and promoters along the way to get the rest of the gigs.

Kowalskiy: What are you most looking forward to about the gig, and your trip to Scotland in general?
Jo:  Oatcakes & King Creosote. In that order.
Scott: Have heard wonderful things about Scotland and the people. Looking forward to making new friends! (talk to me Scottish ladies! No really - I'm lonely ... And sad... Pathetic really. Haha!)

Kowalskiy: What can folk here expect from your live show?
Scott: My music is pretty sad and very personal. Hopefully people can relate to the songs and what I'm singing about though. But depending on my mood I'll either be really quiet or really loud between songs. Well have to see.
Jo:  Just to be wowed, generally. It's like an Olympics opening ceremony. But better. Bigger budget. Larger tech crew. More pyrotechnics trickery. It's a laser light spectacular.

Kowalskiy: That's promising a lot!  Last one... what gives you the shivers?
Scott: Depends how u define shivers! I'll let Jo answer that one.

Says it all!  Before I go on, I would just like to state for the record, that I would never, ever, put King Creosote before an oatcake.  NEVER!  Right, onto their song choices now.  Scott first this time.  He went for this one, simply saying "check out the album - it's unbelievable".  He might be on to something there!

As for Jo she went for these "words harmonies and weirdness. I love listening to my friends sing".  Here's Don't Be Cruel by Los Angeles' RACES from their Year Of The Witch LP.

So that's that.  If you're away to Eigg for Away Game... I hate you!  If not, or even if you are, they you can see Jo and Scott at The Captain's in Glasgow on Wednesday supporting mitchell museum.  Speaking of which, here's Scott's pick from their SoundCloud.  "Great stuff!  Sound a lot like Animal Collective. Gonna listen to more!!!"  His words, not mine.  Though I do of course agree.  Enjoy!

Tuesday, 10 July 2012

...Lost Ghosts!

If you're a regular reader of my notcasts, the name Lost Ghosts may be familiar with you already.  Back in April I told you to keep an eye or two on them when I featured Seven, one of their free online demos.  The same still applies!  Before we hear a bit more about this Glasgow four-piece, here's another of their freebies for you.

Over to you folks...

Kowalskiy: Who are Lost Ghosts?
Lost Ghosts: Gabby (Vocals, Violin & Keyboards), Derek (Guitar), Gary (Drums, Backing Vocals) and Danny (Bass, Backing Vocals) are Lost Ghosts, an exciting new band from Glasgow. Danny Derek and Gary have been working on musical projects since they met at university and when they started working with Gabby, a gifted singer songwriter, the end result was Lost Ghosts. 

Kowalskiy:  How would you describe 'your sound'
Lost Ghosts: The band tries to achieve a mixture somewhere between a large post-rock sound and catchy radio-friendly choruses, citing bands such as M83, There Will Be Fireworks, Radiohead, My Bloody Valentine and Frightened Rabbit as major influences.

Kowalskiy:  PLUG AWAY!!! 
Lost Ghosts: Our next gig we are supporting Man Without Country at the Art School on the 17th of July.  Tickets for the gig can be purchased from any member of the band - feel free to send us a message on Facebook if you don't know us personally - or from TicketWeb.  Also, our self-recorded demos are available for free download from our SoundCloud page.

Kowalskiy:  What can we expect from Lost Ghosts in the future? 
Lost Ghosts: We hope to get in the studio pretty soon to record what will be our debut single. In the meantime we're still looking for gigs in Glasgow as well as further afield.

That debut single can't come soon enough!  Until then, remember to help yourself to their demos, and if you're at a loose end a week today, then they'll be in the Art School in Glasgow.

Friday, 6 July 2012

Kowalskiy Singles Club #16

Who's ready for some more lonely-heart action?!  This time 'round I've sought out more singletons to try and woo you. If you like what they have to say for themselves, you know the drill by now... click on the artwork, have a listen, and get better acquainted. Here they are...

SOS - Carry On Suzie
Carry On Suzie by SOS
"You boys can keep your virgins. Give me hot old women in high heels with asses that forgot to get old. Phoney bastards need not apply." - SOS
They know what they like these Glasgow boys.  I'll give 'em that!  This is the new FREE single from the artists formerly known as Strawberry Ocean Sea. It's the first to be taken from their new EP A Challenge To The Dark due out later in the year.

Supermarionation - Choosing My Religion / How It Remains
Choosing My Religion / How It Remains by Supermarionation
"Confirmed internet hobos WLTM equally lost souls for late night ear destruction hopefully leading to more meaningful encounters. No significant baggage but may occasionally hark back to a simpler time. GCH, DG, BALC and MEIK. GSOH essential but not required as in for the long haul. Percussive love-making a deal breaker, photos on request." - Steven Tonge (Supermarionation)
No idea what any of those mean, other than the GSOH one.  Still, if it's just some late night ear destruction you're after, then get clicking on the artwork and help yourself to this FREE download courtesy of the Supermarionation boys and Six Take No Records.   

The Mouse That Ate The Cat - I Am The Hottest Fire
I Am The Hottest Fire by The Mouse That Ate The Cat
"Pair of lonely, miserable sad-sacks seek comfort from sympathetic ears - you don't need to love us, you just need to listen." - TMTATC
Tugs at the heart strings doesn't it?!  Well, this is the latest from Glasgow's elesctro-indie-popsters The Mouse That Ate The Cat.  The single's not out until the 23rd of July, but you can stream it over on their SoundCloud.  Once it's got 100 listens I'm assured they'll upload the 'explicit' version, the 200 listens gets you the B-side Ou Les Morts Est Sont Des Dieux which I'm also assured translates as something "borderline embarrassing".

We Are The Physics - Goran Ivanisevic
Goran Ivanisevic by We Are The Physics
"Four visually impaired con-artists masquerading as musicians seek like-minded social lepers for shrine-building, tennis-watching and erratic leg movements. GSOH and an impeccable understanding of English broken must a. Willing to travel within radius of 11 parsecs. No Tim Henmans." - We Are The Physics
As a physicist, I've always been drawn to fellow Weegies We Are The Physics. This homage to the one-time Wimbledon champion is a taster from their second album due out later in the year.  Boy do these guys make one helluva racquet!  It is a belter though!  You can have a listen over here and click the artwork to go buy it!  There's also the brilliant video over here.  

The Dead Man's Waltz - Emmeline
Emmeline by The Dead Man's Waltz
"Corpses of four musicians, deceased early 20th century, seek spiritual/surgical shoulder to cry on over various past relationship catastrophes. Interests: historical novels, true crime, amateur chemistry. Necrophilia 'not off the table' ". - The Dead Man's Waltz
Hope they've cleaned that table!  This is Skye quartet The Dead Man's Waltz.  Intriguing to say the least.  Very much in the Beirut or early Decemberists mould if you ask me.  Sound just as good too.  This is a single from their eponymous album which you can buy here.   You can get Emmeline itself/herself here and the stunning video is over here for you to wonder at.  

Shambles Miller - Confessions
Confessions by Shambles Miller
"Loquacious bearded idiot seeks good listener for long nights listening to stories about why he's actually a better beatboxer than everyone thinks and how Les Miserables isn't just an ordinary musical. Must appreciate really good David Bowie impressions and be willing to engage in in-depth conversations about time travel. An affinity for lyrical folky-pop and acoustic ballads with a GSOH: preferable but not essential. Must have own teeth." - Shambles Miller
Something of a Lothario these days is Mr. Miler, jdging my his recent dating exploits. This is his latest single which you can get your grubby hands on by clicking the artwork.

Tuesday, 3 July 2012

Battle Of The Bands: Round 1

And so begins, not only the Battle Of The Bands, but quite possibly, the Battle Of The Century.  In years to come, people may even refer to it as 'The Square-Go in Glasgow'.  As we revealed a few weeks ago, Neil, from the fantastic Scottish Fiction blog, and I will be going head-to-head every fortnight... Top Trump stylee!  With a Scottish music twist of course.  The all-important rules of play are over here.  So without much further ado... ding ding, Round 1!

To kick off my ultimately-successful campaign, French Wives have joined Team Kowalskiy.  Over in the Scottish Fiction's corner, Neil roped in Dundee's Seams.  Neil also had first dibs on choosing the three attributes we'd be playing with this round.  He went for Number of Members, Twitter Follow Ratio and TOTAL.  To recap, it's highest wins, except for the TOTAL one, where the lowest triumphs.   The winner gets one point per winning attribute, with a half point each for a draw.  Here's how these two great bands shape up (Disclaimer: all stats correct at time of battle).

And the result of Round 1, on a points decision...  is a draw.  That's right, after all the trash talk and mental sparring, we both ended up with 1.5 points each.  French Wives done me proud with their superior Twitter Follow Ratio, but their point-heavy Scrabble score and age did nothing for my TOTAL.  And both bands couldn't be separated on Number of Members.  It would appear The Fiction's challenge hasn't come apart at the Seams just yet.

So, it's honours even between me and Neil after Round 1, but it's not really about me or Neil.  No, it's about the bands.  So, here's a plug or two from our two pop pugilists, starting with Team Kowalskiy's French Wives who recently released their long-awaited, much-anticipated, subsequently-amazing, debut album Dream Of The Inbetween.  Here's my favourite track from it. 

It is indeed, "a numbers thing".  Well, a number thing.   That number being one-and-a-half it would appear.  You can get your hands on the album over here.  Before you do that though, here's another belter from Seams.  It's my first time featuring these Dundonian young 'uns.  Definitely won't be the last!  Their debut Colours & Maps EP is out and can be bought from iTunes, Amazon MP3, or you can stream it here for the Spotifiers out there.  A few gigs coming up too, so check those out over here.
All that's left now is to thank Neil for a hard-fought first round.  I'm having you in Round 2 though mate.  Let battle continue on July 17th

Sunday, 1 July 2012

Coastal Skid Spy Wok v15.0

No shite intro this week.  Instead, let's get straight into the first track from Dolfinz.  It's a free taster from Song, by Toad's recent split 12" with PAWS, Sex Hands and Waiters.  You can read more about it over here, and get your hands on it here.
What was that about guitar music being dead?!   If that's not enough, the wonderful Mr. Toad is also gearing up for the release on Meursault's third album Something For The Weakened.  First up though, is the 7" release of lead single Flittin' which can be bought here.  Probably their finest moment to date I hope you'll agree... until you hear the album that is.

The album will follow on the 16th of July but you can pre-order it from Song, by Toad Records on CD or vinyl, or you can treat yourself to a limited edition boxset if you're feeling flash.  Right, that's enough music of an amphibious nature.  Here's a track from the brilliant Saint Max's EP.

An EP which is frighteningly good!  Next up, here's something new from Kill The Waves that went up on SoundCloud a week or so ago.  They'll be releasing new single Oak Tree in July via Glasgow's Strange Fish Records.  Here's the B-side Friend.  I love this track!  Can't wait for the album!

Call me lazy, but I think we'll just have 5 tracks this week.   What better way to round things up than with this beauty from Rachel Sermanni, someone I don't feature half as much as I should around here.   Her Black Currents EP (available here) is one of the must-buys of the year, and according to the email I got yesterday, her album Under Mountains, will be with us in October.   Enjoy!