Archive for June, 2010

Music vs art at the Kelburn Garden Party

Wednesday, June 30th, 2010

Music and art. It’s no real surprise the two go hand in hand so often, both disciplines borne of brains which buzz with creativity and a constant desire to make something new.

The festival scene is an open expanse where liberal, infinite imagination thrives and the KELBURN GARDEN PARTY at Kelburn Castle near Largs is a prime exponent of such free-spiritedness – graffiti painting is as much a symbol of what the weekend stands for as guitar strumming.

Band-wise, it’s one of the most eclectic festivals in Scotland, with hip-hop, reggae, samba, indie, electro, dubstep and jazz all covered in the line-up. Broken Records and Meursault are probably the biggest draws on a 35-plus band bill, while another of The Pop Cop’s favourites, Panda Su, is high on the must-see list.

The Kelburn Garden Party takes place this weekend, July 4-5, so there’s not much time left to snap up one of the 500 tickets on sale for the summer spectacular. If you’re still swithering, try to avoid looking here and just remember that both the organisers of these smaller festivals and the acts who appear at them usually suffer financially for their art (Broken Records frontman Jamie Sutherland, for example, admitted in a recent interview for TheSteinbergPrinciple that he has “not made a penny” from the band), so these do-gooders need your spare change more than most.

Panda Su – Pot Kettle Black

Broken Records – A Leaving Song (live)

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No news is bad news

Sunday, June 27th, 2010

If you were a pre-June 2010 reader of The Pop Cop, you might be suffering withdrawal symptoms from the absence of The Goss – the blog’s much-loved (so I’m told) news feed that revealed something new and exciting about the Scottish music scene (almost) every day.

You’ll be pleased to know that you won’t have long to wait until the feature is restored to its former glory at the top of the site as part of The Pop Cop’s sexy revamp which is coming this week. But rather than try to pretend that nothing newsworthy has happened in the past six weeks, I’ve done a round-up of the most interesting nuggets of goss to keep you in the loop.

A new all-day festival called COMMERCIAL ALTERNATIVE takes place at Mono on July 4 and seems to be a carbon copy of Hey You Get Off My Pavement, which ran at the same venue from 2006 to 2008 with respective headliners Arab Strap, The Aliens and Camera Obscura . Acts on show this Sunday include The Phantom Band, 1990s, Remember Remember, Spectrals, Girls NamesAstral Planes, Peter Parker, Comet Gain and Golden Grrrls. Tickets are available here.

Scott Hutchison (Frightened Rabbit), Ross Clark (Three Blind Wolves) and Jonny Sellar (My Cousin I Bid You Farewell) will play solo sets at Stereo on July 13 in aid of the A-T Society charity. Tickets on sale here.

Scottish gig promoters DF Concerts have started up a new pseudo-festival called ROCK ‘N’ ROLL DAMNATION, which lumps various rock-orientated shows under the one banner in late August. The event sees the likes of Limp Bizkit, Lostprophets and Bad Religion play the city’s larger venues, while several of the more heavy local bands will take to the stage at King Tut’s.

Of much more appeal from King Tut’s is SUMMER NIGHTS which runs from July 15-30. On first glance it looks like the venue has simply invented a new way to rebrand a fortnight of their gig listings but the difference seems to be that a) all 75 artists on show are Scottish, and b) the bookers have lined up some of the finest talent around. Highlights include The Boy Who Trapped The Sun & Lou Hickey (July 19), Kitty The Lion & The Second Hand Marching Band (July 20), LightGuides & Oliver Stays (July 22), GalleriesAstral Planes (July 24), Admiral Fallow & Three Blind Wolves (July 26), Tango In The Attic & Bwani Junction (July 27), The Xcerts & Bronto Skylift (July 28), The Seventeenth Century & Washington Irving (July 29).

The ONE CREATIVE SCOTLAND team are filming a TV pilot for a new programme which hopes to highlight Scotland’s music and visual art scene and is described by the organisers as Later…with Jools Holland meets The Culture Show. Filming takes place on July 31 in Tollhouse Studios, with eight music artists on show (no details on who they are yet) and the ubiquitous Jim Gellatly on presenting duties. To be part of the studio audience you need to buy a ticket costing £5.80 from here.

Finally, just in case you need reminding that the Barras is better, Frightened Rabbit (December 3) and Godspeed You! Black Emperor (December 8) are both playing the Barrowland Ballroom at the end of the year. Yay!

After the success of last year’s Charity Baw, the organisers are holding the sequel, CHARITY BAW II, on July 17. Appearing at the Roxy Art House will be King Creosote, Ballboy, Found, Three Blind Wolves, The Sexual Objects, Panda Su, Maple Leaves and Over The Wall.  Tickets are available here with proceeds going to the charity Artlink.

THE EDGE FESTIVAL returns to the capital from August 5-31 with over 40 gigs – I would end up with RSI if I tried to list them all individually so you’ll just have to check out the official website. The good and the great are all covered with the likes of Stornoway (Aug 5, Liquid Room), Villagers (Aug 6,  Sneaky Pete’s), The Unwinding Hours (Aug 6, Capital), Amy Macdonald (Aug 18, Corn Exchange), Plan B (Aug 20, Picture House), We Were Promised Jetpacks (Aug 21, Liquid Room), Beirut (Aug 22, Picture House), Kassidy (Aug 23, Electric Circus), Mika (Aug 23, Picture House), Eels (Aug 25, Picture House), Broken Records (Aug 28, Liquid Room), Phoenix (Aug 28, Picture House) and Modest Mouse (Aug 29, Picture House) among the highlights.

Fence Records are organising yet another festival. The inaugural HAARFEST runs in August in the label’s hometown of Anstruther. Tickets are available here and the full line-up is as follows:
August 16 (Hew Scott Hall): Admiral Fallow, Adem, Silver Columns
August 17 (Hew Scott Hall): The Oates Field, Inspector Tapehead, Pictish Trail
August 18 (Hew Scott Hall): OnTheFly, Seamus Fogarty, Eagleowl
August 19 (Hew Scott Hall): Lonepigeon, Pip Dylan, HMS Ginafore, Gummi Bako
August 20 (Cellardyke Town Hall): Found, Withered Hand, Meursault
August 21 (Cellardyke Town Hall): King Creosote, Kid Canaveral, Smackvan

A bunch of teenagers were given a wad of lottery cash to start up a new arts festival in Stirling and they’ve done a pretty good job of picking some decent music talent (see below) in amongst the theatre, comedy, film and dance on show at mFEST. The event runs from July 30 to August 2 at various venues in the city. Although it has been organised by youngsters, all ages are welcome to attend. Tickets for all shows are on sale here.
July 30 (Albert Halls): Hadouken!New Young Pony Club, Unicorn Kid, Darwin Deez
July 31 (Albert Halls): Tinchy Stryder, Pearl And The PuppetsDaisy Dares You
July 31 (Tolbooth): The Pains Of Being Pure At HeartAstral Planes, Three Blind Wolves

The ONE CREATIVE SCOTLAND team are filming a TV pilot for a new programme which hopes to highlight Scotland’s music and visual art scene and is described by the organisers as Later…with Jools Holland meets The Culture Show. Filming takes place on July 31 in Tollhouse Studios, with eight music artists on show (no details on who they are yet) and the ubiquitous Jim Gellatly on presenting duties. To be part of the studio audience you need to buy a ticket costing £5.80 from here.

Godspeed You! Black Emperor – Lift Your Skinny Fists Like Antennas To Heaven

Modest Mouse – Float On

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Scottish songs covered: who gets your vote?

Friday, June 25th, 2010

A worthwhile cover version is such a rare thing. Most artists play it straight and turn the whole exercise into a wedding band performance, while others try to stamp their own personality on a cover and end up completely eroding what it was that made the original song special in the first place.

When I heard that one my favourite Belle & Sebastian tracks had made it onto American husband and wife duo Mates Of State’s new covers album Crushes, it seemed like as good a reason as any to whore the internet for other foreigners covering Scottish songs (sadly not Foreigner covering a Scottish song) and roll out a reader poll to find out which one you like best.

Since the role of judge and jury is in your hands, I won’t attempt to sway your choice by commenting on the quality of any of the 20 tracks below, but rest assured it’s a varied cast taken from all manner of sources such as B-sides, album tracks and Radio 1 Live Lounge sessions.

Some Scottish acts have the honour of making multiple appearances as the list includes three wildly differing versions of Franz Ferdinand’s Take Me Out, two versions of The Proclaimers’ and Eurythmics’ most famous singles, and a couple of Teenage Fanclub and Calvin Harris songs. Oh, and Snow Patrol sneaked their way on here as they’re 40% Scottish, not because it provided an opportunity to stick a picture of Diana Vickers on the blog.

AutokratzSwastika Eyes (Primal Scream)

Bat For LashesSweet Dreams (Eurythmics)

Cara DillonGarden Valley (Dougie MacLean)

Dashboard Confessional ft Juli – In A Big Country (Big Country)

Death Cab For CutieStart Again (Teenage Fanclub)

Diana VickersJust Say Yes (Snow Patrol)

EditorsAcceptable In The 80s (Calvin Harris)

Glen CampbellSing (Travis)

GuillemotsTake Me Out (Franz Ferdinand)

Manfred Mann’s Earth BandNothing Ever Happens (Del Amitri)

Marilyn MansonSweet Dreams (Eurythmics)

Mates Of StateSleep The Clock Around (Belle & Sebastian)

Maximo ParkI’m Gonna Be (500 Miles) (The Proclaimers)

Mumford And SonsI’m Not Alone (Calvin Harris)

Saint EtienneEverything Flows (Teenage Fanclub)

Scissor SistersTake Me Out (Franz Ferdinand)

SpungeI’m Gonna Be (500 Miles) (The Proclaimers)

The FeelingDoctor Pressure (Mylo)

The Magic NumbersTake Me Out (Franz Ferdinand)

U2 & Green DayThe Saints Are Coming (Skids)

Which is your favourite cover of a Scottish song?

View Results

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