December 8, 2013: New song stream via SoundCloud… Kith & Kin – Someone I Love.
New mini-album release via Bandcamp… Ballboy – Merry Christmas To The Drunks, Merry Christmas To The Lovers.
New video via YouTube… Angus Munro – Shooting First, taken from Shooting First EP.
Free album download via Bandcamp… Lovers Turn To Monsters – Now That’s What I Call Slit Yr Wrist Christmas.
Free song download via SoundCloud… Jack James – Florence, taken from fifth album Stopping Distance, out on February 3.
December 6, 2013: New video via YouTube… Prides – Messiah.
New video via YouTube… Rachel Sermanni – Everything Changes, taken from Everything Changes EP, out on January 27.
Free mini-album download via Bandcamp… We See Lights – Every Autumn, Every Winter.
New gigs… Kid Canaveral at Glasgow’s Stereo on February 14, Aberdeen’s Tunnels on March 7 and Dundee’s Beat Generator on March 8.
December 5, 2013: Fatherson, The LaFontaines, Cairn String Quartet, Garden Of Elks and The Holy Ghosts have been announced as The Big Apple Award competition finalists. All five acts play free sets at Glasgow’s G2 on December 11, with an all-expenses-paid trip to play New York City in April 2014 up for grabs for the winners.
New gigs… Silibil N’ Brains (stars of The Great Hip Hop Hoax film) play Dundee’s Buskers on December 27 and Glasgow’s Pivo Pivo on December 28.
December 4, 2013: Mick Cooke has left Belle & Sebastian. The band made the announcement in their latest mailshot, stating: “We wish him all the best with any future projects and hope to work alongside him again in the future.” The multi-instrumentalist, who had been a full-time member of Belle & Sebastian since 1998, will now focus on his work as a composer and arranger.
New gig… Song, by Toad Records’ 5th Birthday Party at Edinburgh’s Henry’s Cellar Bar on December 21 featuring PAWsault, Tom Collins Shatner and assorted label friends and guests.
December 3, 2013: Budding musicians aged between 14-19 can register for Hit The Road, a project that offers workshops, seminars and information sessions about performing live, before they are given the opportunity to tour across Scotland. The next set of tours will launch in January, with each one taking three acts on the road.
New video via YouTube… Red Sands – Too Short A Season, taken from debut album Red Sands, out on December 9.
New video via YouTube… Mickey 9s – Ammunition.
New EP release via Bandcamp… Jo Mango – When We Lived In The Crook Of A Tree.
December 2, 2013: New video via YouTube… Mogwai – The Lord Is Out Of Control, taken from their forthcoming album Rave Tapes, out on January 20.
New album release via iTunes… Cold Crows Dead – I Fear A New World, featuring The Xcerts’ Murray Macleod.
Free album download via Bandcamp… Kobi Onyame – Glory.
November 29, 2013: Brew at the Bog have announced the first 25 acts for its festival in Inverness on May 3. The line-up includes Kid Canaveral, Stanley Odd, Friends In America, Fake Major, Randolph’s Leap, Call To Mind, Beerjacket, Campfires In Winter, Shambles Miller, The Little Kicks, This Silent Forest, Woodenbox, Jo Mango and Atom Tree.
The Holy Ghosts have set up a Kickstarter page for pre-orders of their debut album Ride Them Down, due out in April.
November 28, 2013: New video via YouTube… Over The Wall – Radiator.
New video via YouTube… Book Group – Victory Lap, taken from Victory Lap / The Lowdown Of A LOUD Sound single.
New album release via Bandcamp… Scott McWatt – A Ceíst Amá.
November 27, 2013: New song streams via SoundCloud… King Creosote – Dial C For Cradle; Meddling Gut Wrenches; Impossible To Resist.
New song stream via SoundCloud… Rachel Sermanni – Everything Changes.
Findlay Napier has set up a PledgeMusic page to fund the recording of VIP: Very Interesting Persons, an album of songs co-written with Boo Hewerdine.
November 26, 2013: Free album download via Bandcamp… Olive Grove Records Sampler featuring Call To Mind, The State Broadcasters, Randolph’s Leap, The Moth & The Mirror, The Son(s), Woodenbox, Jo Mango and Pensioner.
Free album download via Bandcamp… Mini50 Records Winter Sampler 2013.
New song release via iTunes… Withered Hand – Black Tambourine. Dan Willson will play solo gigs at Glasgow’s Glad Cafe on November 27 and Aberdeen’s Tunnels on November 28 as well as Glasgow’s Platform on January 24 for Celtic Connections.
New video via YouTube… Kid Canaveral – A Compromise, taken from A Compromise EP.
November 25, 2013: New album release… There Will Be Fireworks – The Dark, Dark Bright on CD and download.
Detour will hold their fourth Wee Jaunt in Glasgow on December 7, and the allocation of free places has already been snapped up. Email your name to firstname.lastname@example.org to be added to the reserve list.
Free song download via SoundCloud… Sparrow And The Workshop – One Brush.
Blindfolds have split up after three years together – they bow out with the release of new video Lucid.
November 22, 2013: New video via YouTube… Young Aviators – We’ve Got Names For Folk Like You.
New video via YouTube… The Pastels – Kicking Leaves.
New video via YouTube… Conscious Route feat Werd & Jordan Butler – Friends Til The End.
New gig… The Xcerts at Aberdeen’s Downstairs on December 21.
New gig… Glasgow’s Dirty Weekender across five venues on February 28-March 1 featuring Mark Morriss (The Bluetones), Mark Gardener (Ride), Bombskare, etc.
November 21, 2013: New song stream via SoundCloud… Withered Hand – Black Tambourine.
New video via YouTube… Jo Mango – When We Lived In The Crook Of A Tree, taken from When We Lived In The Crook Of A Tree EP, out on December 2.
CHVRCHES’ gig for TYCI’s Christmas Party on December 21 has been moved to Glasgow’s SWG3 due to a delay in the reopening of The Vic venue at The Art School.
New gig… The Jezabels at Glasgow’s Oran Mor on February 26, plus ticket bundles with new album The Brink.
November 20, 2013: Arctic Monkeys have been announced as the one of headliners at next year’s T in the Park on July 11-13. Tickets go on sale on November 22.
New gig… The Christmas Songwriters’ Club at Edinburgh’s Queen’s Hall on December 22 featuring Frightened Rabbit’s Scott Hutchison, Kid Canaveral, Broken Records, Miaoux Miaoux, Siobhan Wilson, TeenCanteen with Eugene Kelly, Karine Polwart & Findlay Napier, We See Lights and Very Well.
New song stream via SoundCloud… SOS – Fake Hallelujah.
November 19, 2013: New video via YouTube… Franz Ferdinand – Bullet.
Free EP download via Bandcamp… King Post Kitsch – The Silver Screen.
New video via YouTube… The Amazing Snakeheads – Flatlining.
November 18, 2013: CHVRCHES have been confirmed as the live band for TYCI’s Christmas Party at Glasgow’s Art School on December 21.
New album trailer via YouTube… Withered Hand – New Gods, due out in February.
New Beerjacket album Darling Darkness will be released on January 27.
New tour… The Winter Tradition at Glasgow’s King Tut’s on February 6, Stirling’s Tolbooth on February 7, Aberdeen’s Cafe Drummond on February 8, Inverness’ Mad Hatters on February 9, Galashiels’ Heriot-Watt Student Union on February 10, Dundee’s Duke’s Corner on February 11 and Perth’s Twa Tams on February 15.
November 17, 2013: Glasgow venue King Tut’s has unveiled it line-up for the fourth annual King Tut’s New Year’s Revolution on January 3-16, with the likes of Campfires In Winter, Cherri Fosphate, Book Group, Garden Of Elks, Saint Max And The Fanatics and Quinny featuring on all-local bills.
Labels, musicians and fans are being invited to register albums released by Scottish artists in 2013 for consideration for next year’s SAY Award.
November 15, 2013: French Wives will play their last ever gig at Glasgow’s Mono on December 19 after announcing they are splitting up.
New video via YouTube… There Will Be Fireworks – Youngblood.
New album release via iTunes… Ministry Of Stories – Share More Air, an album of children’s lyrics set to original music including Rachel Sermanni’s Love Story.
New song stream via Bandcamp… Water Of Life – Sources And Springs / Abercrombie, 1949, an art-science collaboration between Tommy Perman and Rob St. John exploring flows of water through Edinburgh.
November 14, 2013: New gig… The Wee Chill Festive Weekender at Glasgow’s SWG3 on December 22, featuring Admiral Fallow, Washington Irving, The Little Kicks, Call To Mind and Atom Tree.
The Big Apple Award has launched its annual competition, with an all-expenses-paid trip to play New York City in April 2014 up for grabs. The deadline for applications is December 2, before the winner is picked from a shortlist of five Scottish performers at Glasgow’s Garage on December 11. The last two victors were Stanley Odd and Song Of Return.
Free song download via SoundCloud… Mike Nisbet – Traveling Blues (demo)
November 13, 2013: Edinburgh’s Hogmanay celebrations will incorporate an afternoon of free live music on January 1. Starting at the National Museum of Scotland at noon, the guest-curated SCOT:LANDS event will feature performances across nine Old Town venues by the likes of King Creosote, Withered Hand, RM Hubbert, Lau and FOUND as well as a production of Whatever Gets You Through The Night.
New video via YouTube… Washington Irving – Palomides , director James Houston claims it’s the world’s first autostereogram music video.
New video via YouTube… Nightmare Boy – Paranoid (Black Sabbath cover).
New video via Vevo… KT Tunstall – Made Of Glass.
November 12, 2013: New album release via Bandcamp… Medals – Disguises, new project of Sucioperro’s JP Reid.
New event… Vic Galloway – Songs In The Key Of Fife book reading + Withered Hand + Kid Canaveral at Glenrothes’ Rothes Halls on November 29.
New album stream via SoundCloud… Kobi Onyame – Glory, available to buy on iTunes.
November 11, 2013: Next year’s MTV Europe Music Awards will be held at Glasgow’s Hydro on November 9.
Arches singer Michael Rice has left the band, with guitarist Barry Morrell taking over vocal duties.
New EP release via SoundCloud…. Casual Sex – The Bastard Beat, streaming on SoundCloud.
Free song download via SoundCloud… Mike Nisbet – What Will Be Will Be (demo).
November 8, 2013: BBC ALBA programme Buskers has returned for a second series, with the first two episodes available to watch on iPlayer. Episode 2′s spotlight on Glasgow features Donald Macdonald, Alan Tennie, Anna Shields and Holly Wilson.
November 7, 2013: New gigs… Fireside Acoustic Sessions (organised by Comets & Cartwheels) at Glasgow’s Drake Bar featuring free stripped-back sets from Friends In America + Prehistoric Friends on November 7, Finn LeMarinel on November 14, Randolph’s Leap on November 21 and Honeyblood + LightGuides on November 28.
New gig… There Will Be Fireworks + Friends In America + The Youth And Young at Strathaven’s Old Mill Studios on December 7.
November 6, 2013: New video via YouTube… Prides – Roar (Katy Perry cover for Vic Galloway session).
New song stream via YouTube… Fridge Magnets – Chase The Sun.
Rachel Sermanni has set up a PledgeMusic page for pre-orders of her Everything Changes EP.
Free song download via SoundCloud… This Silent Forest – Root To The Seed, taken from debut album Indivision.
New song stream via Gold Flake Paint… Book Group – The Lowdown of A LOUD Sound, taken from Victory Lap / The Lowdown Of A LOUD Sound single, out on November 25.
New video via YouTube… The Button Men – Man With A Plan.
November 5, 2013: New song stream via SoundCloud (today only)… There Will Be Fireworks – Elder And Oak.
New video via YouTube… CHVRCHES – Lies.
The Birthday Suit have a PledgeMusic campaign featuring various incentives and packages to go with pre-orders of their third album A Hollow Hole Of Riches, out in April.
BrewDog Records has been set up by the Scottish craft beer company with its first official release being The Shiverin’ Sheiks single Guided Missiles, taken from the band’s debut album A Curious Case Of…, out on November 20.
November 4, 2013: New album release via Bandcamp… Washington Irving – Palomides: Volume II.
New album release via iTunes… Kobi Onyame – Glory.
New song stream via SoundCloud… Over The Wall – Radiator, taken from This Is How We Did It EP, out on December 9.
November 1, 2013: New gig… There Will Be Fireworks + Friends In America + Kevin Harper at Glasgow’s SWG3 on November 22.
Arctic Monkeys have rescheduled tonight’s show at Glasgow’s Hydro to November 21 as singer Alex Turner has laryngitis. All original tickets remain valid.
New video via YouTube… Michael Cassidy – Everybody’s Scared. He plays with Beerjacket + Julia And The Doogans at Glasgow’s Mono on December 5.
October 31, 2013: New video via YouTube… Nightmare Boy – Mary (first solo offering of ex-Kassidy member Barrie-James O’Neill).
New video via YouTube… Frightened Rabbit – Holy.
A fan-led campaign to boycott all of Idlewild’s side-projects in the hope of spurring them to make new music has been attacked by band member Rod Jones. The guitarist, who also fronts The Birthday Suit, wrote: “If anything this just has the opposite effect in that it made me really consider whether I wanted to make music anymore. My other band The Birthday Suit and its touring and releasing records has absolutely no bearing or influence on whether and when an Idlewild tour or album might happen.”
October 30, 2013: New gigs… The Reflektors (Arcade Fire) at Glasgow’s Barrowland on November 15 and November 16 – general sale from November 1; presale passwords are available to those who pre-ordered the band’s new album from their official website.
New album release via iTunes… Cairn String Quartet – One (streaming on SoundCloud) featuring orchestral covers of Lana Del Rey, Coldplay, Oasis, The Stone Roses, Ocean Colour Scene etc.
October 29, 2013: Free song download via official website… Mogwai – Remurdered (streaming on SoundCloud), taken from eighth album Rave Tapes, out on January 20.
New song stream via SoundCloud… Pinact – Brew.
New video via YouTube… The LaFontaines – All She Knows.
Free song download via SoundCloud… SOS – ROCK N ROLL.
New song stream via SoundCloud… Madison – Mending, taken from Mending EP, out now.
Gig venue change…. Katie Sutherland plays Glasgow’s Faktory instead of Mackintosh Church on November 2.
October 28, 2013: New album release via Comets & Cartwheels… Blood Relatives – Deerheart.
Free song download via SoundCloud… Call To Mind – A Family Sketch.
New album release via Lost Map… Monoganon – F A M I L Y, streaming in full on Gold Flake Paint.
October 25, 2013: Born To Be Wide will host a seminar on record shops at Edinburgh’s Electric Circus on November 7. Panelists include Rose Norton (Coda), Sandy McLean (Love Music) and Darren Yeates (VoxBox).
New gig… Blood Relatives album launch at Glasgow’s Bar & Fly on October 26.
New gig… Scottish Fiction presents Beerjacket & Friends + Julia And The Doogans at Glasgow’s Mono on December 5.
New song stream via SoundCloud… The LaFontaines – All She Knows (Prides remix).
The 1975, Nina Nesbitt and The 10:04s have been added to the Concert in the Gardens bill at Edinburgh’s Hogmanay alongside Pet Shop Boys. Other stages feature CHVRCHES, Django Django and King Creosote.
October 24, 2013: New gig… TYCI Christmas Party featuring secret live act plus DJ sets from CHVRCHES + Pretty Ugly + Adele Bethel at Glasgow’s Art School on December 21.
New song stream via SoundCloud… Honeyblood – Kissing On You.
New gig… Starz In Their Eyes featuring RM Hubbert + Eagleowl + The Pictish Trail + Kid Canaveral + Two Wings (each covering a female artist of their choice) at Edinburgh’s Pilrig St Paul’s Church on November 23.
October 23, 2013: New video via YouTube… Siobhan Wilson – All Dressed Up.
New video via YouTube… TeenCanteen – Honey.
New video via YouTube… Young Fathers – Low, taken from forthcoming album Dead, out on February 3.
New video via YouTube… Biffy Clyro – Sounds Like Balloons.
New EP release via Bandcamp… End Of Neil – Less.
October 22, 2013: Local Natives’ Nik Ewing had his Fender Coronado bass guitar stolen during their gig at The Arches in Glasgow last night – contact police if you spot it.
New song stream via SoundCloud… Michael Cassidy – Everybody’s Scared, out on November 28.
October 21, 2013: New song stream via SoundCloud… TeenCanteen – Honey, out on October 28. They play Edinburgh’s Summerhall on October 25, Glasgow’s Rio Cafe on October 26 (free) and Aberfeldy Festival on November 3.
New album release via Bandcamp… Saint Max & The Fanatics – Saint Max Is Missing And The Fanatics Are Dead.
New video via YouTube… Kobi Onyame – Goodbye World, Hello, taken from new album Glory, out on November 4.
Free download via official website… Plum – Death Comes With A Bow, taken from Betsy Thunder EP, out now.
October 18, 2013: Dumfries Music Conference has announced its upcoming four-day programme of free events in the town.
October 30: Screening of LCD Soundsystem documentary Shut Up And Play The Hits at Robert Burns Centre.
October 31: Music Industry Experts seminar featuring The Pop Cop and others at The Stove (ticketed).
November 1: Songwriting Workshops featuring Findlay Napier + Finding Albert’s Robert Shields at The Stove.
November 1: Live showcase featuring Hector Bizerk + Honeyblood + Barstow Bats at The Stove (ticketed).
November 2: Record Fair featuring Rebecca Vasmant (Ministry Of Sound) + Jason Reid (Sub Club) at The Stove.
October 17, 2013: New song stream via SoundCloud… Washington Irving – Babble. Their track Palomides is also available for free download. Both are taken from Palomides: Volume II album, out on November 4.
New video via Clash… The Birthday Suit – A Bigger World, out on November 4.
New video via YouTube… Atom Tree – Die For Your Love, taken from Tide Of Thorns EP, out on October 18.
Free gig… Rachel Sermanni at Glasgow’s Love Music on October 21 (5pm).
October 16, 2013: New video via YouTube… Colin Macleod – Devil Pavement (Live from the Green Bus), taken from The Anchor EP, out on October 21. On the same day he will play instore sets at Edinburgh’s Coda Music (1pm) and Glasgow’s Love Music (5.30pm).
57ᵒ North have published their Guide To DIY Gig Promotion – a useful resource for anyone venturing into this side of the music business.
Michael Cassidy will play at the opening night party for Glasgow’s The Bar & Fly on October 19.
Free gig… French Wives + Randolph’s Leap + Laki Mera + The Graveyard Band + Donald Macdonald And The Islands + The Mademoiselle for 1st Birthday Bash at Glasgow’s Broadcast on October 25 (RSVP required).
October 15, 2013: New video via YouTube… Travis – Mother.
New video via YouTube…. Casual Sex – Nothing On Earth, taken from The Bastard Beat EP, out on October 28.
October 14, 2013: Anna Sweeney, who spoke out on The Pop Cop about her mental health issues after quitting her solo career, has started a new project with Maeve McCrorie called The Scarlings. They play their first gig at Glasgow’s Oran Mor on October 31.
October 12, 2013: New documentary via BBC iPlayer… The Great Hip Hop Hoax.
New song stream via Clash… Washington Irving – Palomides, taken from Palomides: Volume II album, out on November 4.
Free download via SoundCloud… Beerjacket – Glow (demo).
Free album download via Bandcamp… Louie & Bigg Taj – Paranoise.
October 11, 2013: New gig… Withered Hand at Edinburgh’s Whale Arts Centre on October 19 (free tickets) with free return coach travel from Waterloo Place as part of Scottish Mental Health Arts & Film Festival.
New tour… Travis at Edinburgh’s Picture House on November 17, Inverness’ Ironworks on November 18, Aberdeen’s Music Hall on November 19 and Glasgow’s Barrowland on December 20.
October 10, 2013: The venue splits and stage times for Haddowfest in Edinburgh on October 11-12 have been released.
New video via YouTube… Honeyblood – Bud. The band play Glasgow’s Broadcast on October 29 and Edinburgh’s Electric Circus on October 30.
New video via YouTube… Camera Obscura – Troublemaker. The band’s Break It To You Gently double 7″ single is out now.
Free song download via SoundCloud… Saint Max & The Fanatics – Soul Surrender, taken from debut album Saint Max Is Missing And The Fanatics Are Dead, out on October 21.
October 9, 2013: New video via YouTube… Katie Sutherland – Canvas. She plays Glasgow’s Mackintosh Church on November 2.
New gig… Rachel Sermanni + Bwani Junction + Vigo Thieves at Edinburgh’s Liquid Room on November 23 (for War Child). Rachel’s The Boatshed Sessions EP is out on October 21.
The Great Hip Hop Hoax will be broadcast on BBC Two Scotland on October 11 at 9pm.
LCD Soundsystem documentary Shut Up And Play The Hits will be shown for free at Dumfries’ Robert Burns Centre on October 30 as part of Dumfries Music Conference which runs from October 30 to November 2.
October 8, 2013: CHVRCHES, Django Django, King Creosote, The Rezillos, Treacherous Orchestra and Fiddlers’ Bid have been announced to play Edinburgh’s Hogmanay street party alongside headliners Pet Shop Boys.
New song stream via SoundCloud… SOS – ROCK N ROLL.
October 7, 2013: New song stream via YouTube… The LaFontaines – All She Knows, out on October 27; B-side My Yo-Yo available now on iTunes.
New album release via iTunes… The Fratellis – We Need Medicine.
New album release via Bandcamp… The Grand Gestures – Second.
New album release via Fortuna POP!… The Spook School – Dress Up.
October 6, 2013: New video via YouTube… De Rosa – Spectres. The band play their first gig in four years as part of Kid Canaveral’s Xmas Baubles IV at Edinburgh’s Portobello Town Hall on December 14.
Free song download via SoundCloud… Beerjacket – Androgynous (The Replacements cover).
New album stream via SoundCloud… L.Pierre – Neverland Transmission, A Disney Mix (tracklist on Dazed and Confused).
October 4, 2013: 57º North will run a free music journalism training course at Aberdeen’s Seventeen every Wednesday for four weeks from October 23. Email email@example.com to apply for one of six spaces.
New song stream via SoundCloud… Katie Sutherland – Canvas, out on November 18.
New gigs via Ticketmaster… The Twilight Sad performing debut album Fourteen Autumns & Fifteen Winters at Glasgow’s King Tut’s on December 20 and December 21.
New album release via Bandcamp… The Little Kicks – Put Your Love In Front Of Me.
New video via BBC iPlayer… Rapal – Series 7, Episode 8, featuring Vukovi, Donald Macdonald And The Islands, The Velveteen Saints, The River 68′s and Conquering Animal Sound.
October 3, 2013: The Glasgow venue formerly known as The Barfly, which shut in February 2009, will reopen as The Bar & Fly at the same location on Clyde Street on October 18.
New video via YouTube… The Deep Red Sky – Kids (MGMT cover), out on October 7.
New song via YouTube… Finn LeMarinel – Love Is Waves (demo).
October 2, 2013: Free album download via UK Rock Radio… Free Sample Issue #03 featuring songs by The Xcerts, Sparrow And The Workshop, Admiral Fallow, A Band Called Quinn, Mull Historical Society and Unkle Bob.
Meursault frontman Neil Pennycook will be a guest speaker at Born To Be Wide’s seminar on promoting gigs, which takes place at Edinburgh’s Electric Circus on October 3.
New video via YouTube… We Were Hunted – You Know Me Now.
What The Blood Revealed have announced they are splitting up.
Free song download via SoundCloud… Lorraine McCauley & The Borderlands – Belong.
October 1, 2013: Free song download via iTunes… CHVRCHES – Tether. Singer Lauren Mayberry has written a Guardian article about the online misogyny she has been suffering, it’s well worth a read.
Free song download via SoundCloud… Julia & The Doogans – Love At First Sight (Kylie Minogue cover).
New song stream via SoundCloud… Cold Crows Dead – Ghost That Burned Your House Down, taken from debut album I Fear A New World, out on December 2. The band is a collaboration between The Xcerts’ Murray Macleod and Brighton songwriter Paul Steel. They play Aberdeen’s Tunnels on December 10 and Glasgow’s King Tut’s on December 11.
I do go on a fair bit about Friends In America, but only because the potential for the Glasgow-based band to one day construct something truly wondrous and permanent has been apparent every time I’ve seen them play live over the past two years. That day is imminent with the release of their first proper studio recordings, a seven-track record (mini-album, if you like) – think of it as a hand of friendship reaching out with the gift of undercover pop songs set to compelling, poetic lyrics. My precious.
Click the play button icon to listen to individual songs, right-click on the song title to download an mp3, or grab a zip file of the full 34-track compilation through Ge.tt here.
SCOTLAND: The Pop Cop
Friends In America – Quietly Quietly
Such is my love for the sweeping, elegantly crafted indie-rock of Friends In America that their previous lack of recorded material resulted in me going to desperate lengths to consume their music. One time, after taking along my dictaphone to interview the band before a gig, I kept the ‘record’ button on during their live set just so that I could play their songs at home. This month, though, the waiting is over as FIA release their debut record What It Is To Be – from it we have a MAP exclusive download of the brilliantly melodious Quietly Quietly.
June 26, Broadcast, Glasgow (tickets)
July 26, The Wickerman Festival, Dumfries & Galloway (tickets)
Excursiones Polares – La Guerra Psicológica
Concepto Cero, one of La Plata’s finest record labels, just turned four, and they decided to celebrate by releasing a free compilation with songs from all of their artists. La Guerra Psicológica is an original track by El Perrodiablo, but in this case played in a blues fashion by Excursiones Polares. Both bands are from the Concepto Cero family, so we recommend you to download the whole album and check for their latest releases.
AUSTRALIA: Who The Bloody Hell Are They?
Gang Of Youths – A Sudden Light
Harmonies and punch-the-air victory songs are generally always in high demand. Sydney’s Gang Of Youths are next. This sounds like Win Butler singing at your birthday and Julian Casablancas singing at your funeral at the same time. A Sudden Light is a loose, belter of an anthem with a modulating chorus, overbearing references to children, drugs and enough harmonic “WHOAHS” to easily make them your new favourite band.
The Unused Word – Heaven (Testa Remix)
Much like the recent 4AD signing SOHN, Anna aka The Unused Word is not only working and living in Vienna, but also has her finger on the pulse with her soulful mixture of hip hop and new school electronica. Heaven is taken from her debut EP ∞ (Infinity). The version here is a remix by her labelmate DJ Testa.
BRAZIL: Meio Desligado
Rua – Às Bolas De Gude
Rua, also known as Rua Do Absurdo, is an experimental quintet. Às Bolas De Gude shows their minimalism with beautiful vocal melodies and a marimba guiding us through the song.
CANADA: Quick Before It Melts
Ketch Harbour Wolves – The Good Blood
Weaving together history, mythology and their own personal experiences, Ketch Harbour Wolves’ new album, Queen City: Volume One, is their first of what is expected to be a multiple disc project that aims to create a sonic map of their home, Toronto. The Good Blood is an excellent gateway into this sprawling, ambitious project, and to Ketch Harbour Wolves’ majestic, cinematic back catalogue.
CHILE: Super 45
Alex y Daniel – Cada Vez Que Invento Algo Sobre Ti
After reaching recognition and fame through their solo projects, Alex Andwandter and Daniel Riveros (Gepe) – two of the most iconic faces of Chilean pop – got together in a joint project that, under the suggestive name Alex y Daniel, combines their musical curiosity. Their new single Cada Vez Que Invento Algo Sobre Ti (“Every time I make up a story about you”) mixes Andwandter’s penchant for dance music and Riveros’ melodic instinct perfectly, leaving no room to doubt that, together, they’re dynamite.
COLOMBIA: El Parlante Amarillo
La Etnnia feat. Doctor Krápula – La Gran Epidemia
It is our pleasure to introduce you to perhaps Colombia’s biggest hip hop project, La Etnnia, who formed more than 25 years ago in the Las Cruces neighborhood of Bogotá. La Gran Epidemia, a preview of their eighth album Universal, features the stellar appearance of Doctor Krápula, a rock band with long renown in Colombia. You can watch the video for the song here.
DENMARK: All Scandinavian
Scarlet Chives – In A Ground Floor Apartment
Scarlet Chives is something as rare as a Danish band signed to a Norwegian label and, in a not so distant future, that label, Riot Factory, will release the alternative rock quintet’s second full-length album. In A Ground Floor Apartment, a MAP exclusive download, is the B-side to first single The Timber Will Fall.
DOMINICAN REPUBLIC: La Casetera
Hache ST – Sebastian Lemba
Culture and rebellion are at the center of this experimental piece, which revolves around the figure of the black anti-slavery advocate Sebastian Lemba Calembo. This track is a portal to that struggle and it’s an essential component of the journey outlined by Hache ST in his new album, Zafra, which portrays the main ideas of life in a shared Caribbean island, and its intricate, passionate toils for freedom.
ECUADOR: Plan Arteria
El Extraño Comportamiento De Un Torso Animado – ¿Dónde Están Tus Amigos?
El Extraño Comportamiento De Un Torso Animado is an indie band with a lot of attitude. Formed by Ernesto Torres and twins Nicolás and Felipe Meneses, the trio have a punk-rock spirit with a guitar sound that invites you to dance. From their first EP, Mujer Pulpo, we present the single ¿Dónde Están Tus Amigos?
ENGLAND: Drowned In Sound
BODYWORK – Tame
English avant-pop or alt-rock or whatever the kids on the cobbled streets are calling it these days hasn’t had the respect it deserves for quite some time. Percolating beneath the Mumford mirth and Adele success, there’s a throbbing underbelly of eccentricity and experimentation that flirts with radio-friendly melody. Leeds’ BODYWORK are one such act, muddling Roxy Music’s odd shuffle with Wild Beasts and Heaven 17′s falsetto into a sublime cocktail of alien grooves. Download their LP for free from their website.
Forgotten Sunrise – Sisters, Brothers & Other Hellborn Creatures
Forgotten Sunrise is a cult band who are pleasing the ears of the world with negative music for positive results. They have just released their seventh album, Cretinism.
Constables – Ludovico
With all its members born in the early 90s, Constables is a very young band and is simply inspired by the three most important things when you are 20: sex, girls and alcohol. Musically, Constables offers melodic guitars and fast rhythms with a post-punk approach. The band has just released its debut Bedroom Culture EP, which is available on SoundCloud.
Poétique Électronique – Irregular Heartbeat (Video Edit)
Poétique Électronique is a clever group: they have a good band name, they know what they want to do and they know how to do it. Their musical approach stands out from the crowd as they realise when to pause and when to push. Irregular Heartbeat is a fine example of the current penchant in electronic music for soft vocals and punchy bass. As this is my final MAP submission due to time contraints, I want to say goodbye to you folks and many thanks for the great time!
Playground Noise – The Plan
Playground Noise’s second album, 8 Songs, brims with endlessly replayable, perfect pop tunes that glimmer with pure magic. Every note and transition is smooth and effortless, and there is such a wealth of brilliantly executed music. Brass and strings swarm beautifully around soaring guitars and vocals, and intense crescendos linger over delicate passages.
Drawing Short Straws – Predator
Drawing Short Straws is a prog-rock band from Pune. This is their first single and a taste of what their debut LP will sound like. A combination of electronic and rock elements make for an interesting sound, which DSS are trying to hone.
White Shoes & The Couples Company – Tam Tam Buku
One of Indonesia’s most beloved bands, White Shoes & The Couples Company make us proud. Purveyors of quality music, they’re coming with a new EP that rearranges traditional Indonesian songs and invites us to dance with them. After playing around Europe in June, they’ll release another EP documenting the tour.
IRELAND: Harmless Noise
The Violet Roadkills – Solar
Taken from their debut album Lead Kindly Light, Solar has everything The Violet Roadkills need to make a good first impression. The four-piece hail from Dublin and use electronics and instruments to take vintage concepts in a fresh direction, resulting in songs that are simultaneously geeky and cool. Solar’s assertive, warm bassline and beat build up to spangles of synths that sound like small studio commissions for 70s television shows. When the outer drift subsides, the beaming krautrock core of Solar begins to blast out, reaching a blisteringly heated finish.
JAPAN: Make Believe Melodies
Ykiki Beat – Garden
Something something summer jam. It is that time of the year when everybody starts nominating songs as the soundtrack to the warmer months, and here is the strongest candidate from the ever-sprawling Tokyo indie scene. Garden is giddiness reduced to sonic form, powered on by handclaps, neon basslines and yelpy back-up singing. At the center, though, is an irresistible jogging melody that rarely slows down. Recommended if you like: running on really hot days.
MALTA: Stagedive Malta
Andre Camilleri – Same Old Fool
In 2000, Andre Camilleri moved from Malta to Australia, where he continues to follow his musical ambitions. Having served his apprenticeship playing the streets of Berlin and Malta’s capital Valletta, wearing his trademark cowboy hat, his world is one of nostalgic reflections, acute and often intimate observations. Andre has released nine albums to date, with his influences including The Flying Burrito Brothers, Big Star, Uncle Tupelo and Hank Williams.
MEXICO: Red Bull Panamérika
Santos – La Cosita
There are plenty of people religiously devoted in northern Mexico, even the drug dealers have their own sacred figure there. Santos come from that cultural background, belonging to the ‘ruidoson’ musical scene of Tijuana. Santos is the brainchild of two brothers who have embodied their faith, but their faith comes from their lust and it is well printed in this new single. La Cosita has a very intense carnal desire and highly erotic resounding kettle drums.
Nouveau Vélo – Kite
A gang of best friends from small towns home-recording dreampop. Much like bike-life in Holland, Nouveau Vélo has a touch of romance to it. Kite, from their new Daze EP, could be described as upbeat melancholia, one of those songs that makes you feel nostalgic for the things that are happening right now. Possessing a chorus that catches you straight away with its blurry guitar licks and far-off vocals, Kite is a dreamy summer anthem.
TOURISTA – Requiem
One day Rui Pereira decided to leave his job as a publicist to follow his true passion – music. He moved to the beach and began to make songs that would form part of his first EP, Déficit de Atención, recruiting a group of experienced musicians who soon formed TOURISTA. The band mixes its electronic concerns with indie-rock, although the labels don’t matter when you start to feel a connection with the musical passion of its creators. Requiem is TOURISTA’s latest single, take a look at its funny video.
POLAND: Łukasz Kuśmierz Weblog
Milcz Serce – 22.22
Although Nawyki/Kolizje is their first studio album, Mysłowice-based trio Milcz Serce are experienced musicians. Their debut LP talks about a break-up which starts at 10pm and ends at 9am the next day. So what you hear in 22.22 is the beginning of the whole dramatic story.
PORTUGAL: Posso Ouvir Um Disco?
Elektra Zagreb – Kesey Palms
Elektra Zagreb began in Croatia, of course. After an EP, many concerts and experience, this Portuguese quartet, now living in Lisbon, recently released their debut LP, Dreams About Dying In California. Mostly inspired by rock bands, their sound is harsh, sort of The Stooges meets Suicide. Kesey Palms is a genial piece of music in which you never know what is going to happen next, a feeling that its video achieves even more.
PUERTO RICO: Puerto Rico Indie
MoreIra – Pao
José Iván Lebrón Moreira (Las Abejas, Venera-3) created MoreIra after buying a second-hand Alesis Micron keyboard from a local musician. His mind racing with new musical possibilities, José embarked on an electronic solo project that is now slowly evolving into a fully-fledged band. Pao is the first single from his debut EP, available later this year. Noisy, glitchy, yet filled with heartfelt melodies, Pao is both powerful and personal – dealing with Moreira’s paternal love toward his younger sister.
ROMANIA: Babylon Noise
Valerinne – Ins Meer
Taking inspiration from everything that surrounds them, this three-piece from Bucharest started creating atmospheric, loud and emotional instrumental music at the beginning of last year. Combining their sound with equally haunting visuals, they will transport you to twisted worlds. If you like this song, you will definitely love their album, available on Bandcamp.
SOUTH AFRICA: Musical Mover & Shaker!
John Empire – Dead Stars feat. Drunk Beggar Thief
Two honours students – hip hop artist John Empire backed by producer The English – created a meeting point between hip hop and indie influences that pushes the understanding of both genres. With their song Dead Stars, the added feature of Drunk Beggar Thief gives their sound an extra dimension. Their mixtape Drunken Night Make Up has recently been released and further shows off the duo’s range and diversity.
SOUTH KOREA: Korean Indie
Asian Chairshot – Mask Dance
Asian Chairshot formed in 2011 and released their first official EP, Mask, in May this year. Equipped with drums, bass and guitar, the trio merges rock with Korean melodies in a powerful fashion, crafting a unique sound. Mask Dance starts out calmly but soon turns into a hard-hitting fest for the ears. The song’s refrain borrows the rhythm of traditional Korean mask dance.
Prisma Circus – Paradox
Prisma Circus was formed in September 2010 in Barcelona. Inspired by 70s psychedelia, with a lot of wahs and fuzz, they have toured Spain, Portugal and France, becoming the ambassadors of a new but old sound.
Da Poet – Other Side feat. Ince Sarj
Da Poet, one of the most showy producers in the Turkish hip hop scene, creates an innovative, sharp sound. He tries to connect with his audience just as much without speaking and expects listeners to pay attention to the instrumental parts of hip hop.
UNITED STATES: We Listen For You
Kaleidico – Pretty Panasonic Dear
Kaleidico is a band that has been around for a few years but, being perfectionists, scrutinized every detail before releasing their first album this month. It’s dreamy, smart, catchy and all too perfect for the summer moments creeping up on us.
VENEZUELA: Música y Más
Los Mentas – Cacería (live)
Los Mentas formed in Caracas in 1998, influenced by punk and rockabilly from the early 50s, resulting in a fusion that went down well in the music scene in Venezuela. After six studio albums and 15 years of experience, they have released their first live album, Arriba Carajo!, recorded in the main rock bars of the country.