Looking for more live music in and around Edinburgh?


Proud to say that I am involved in putting together and, indeed, DJing at two special gigs taking place just outside Edinburgh over this coming month.

An eclectic programme of events will launch the re-opening of Dalkeith Arts Centre.

On Saturday 22 September, Bwani Junction will take to the stage, with support from local band Carter Damm, who I played on my radio show during the fringe.

Bwani Junction, who I have covered a lot on this blog, made history earlier this year by becoming the first band to perform on top of the Forth Rail Bridge. They have recorded a session for the BBC’s Vic Galloway and this summer have performed at numerous festivals, including T in the Park, Wickerman and Belladrum. They were awarded Best Newcomer at the Scottish Alternative Awards in 2012.

Buy Bwani Junction and Carter Damm tickets here

Meanwhile, the legendary King Creosote -who surely needs no introduction here -will play the same venue on Wednesday 26 September with support from The Last Battle. They are currently working on their second album, the follow-up to their debut Heart Of The Land Soul Of The Sea which came out on 17 Seconds in 2010.

Buy King Creosote and The Last Battle tickets here.

…and I will be DJing at both events!

Album review – Cold Seeds


King Creosote, Meursault and Animal Magic Tricks -‘Cold Seeds.’ (Song, By Toad Records)

This is clearly the year of painfully cool collaborations (see also: Burns Unit). Cold Seeds is Kenny Anderson (AKA King Creosote), Neil Pennycook (of Meursault, who also features on the forthcoming debut album from the Last Battle), Frances Donnelly (AKA Animal Magic Tricks), and cellist Pete Harvey who plays with both Meursault and The Leg.

This album was recorded over two weekends last year at Song, By Toad HQ. It was literally recorded live in the living room -and you can hear Floyd the cat on the first track (he’s a Maine coon, and absolutely gorgeous). This whole album is a lo-fi gem. You may have heard ‘Crank Resolutions’ on the most recent Meursault album (I certainly hope you have by now) and King Creosote’s ‘By 11 o’clock she’d left,’ one of my favourite songs of his. Both songs appear performed by the artists together, in radically different form. For my money, the highlight of the album is the King Creosote-led version of Donnelly’s song ‘the Perfume Of Mexican Birds.’

It is as lofi as anything, and that will probably put some people off. Their loss. This is a document of what sounds like two wonderful weekends and something you oughta hear if you have any interest in the current scottish music scene, and indeed, beyond.


Cold Seeds is released on Song By Toad Records (officially) on September 20.

Cold Seeds -‘Leave Me To Lie Alone In the Ground.’ mp3

Cold Seeds -‘The Perfume of Mexican Birds.’ mp3

Tigerfest is go! (part 2)


Withered hand – joining an excellent lineup at Tigerfest 2010.

That rather fab Tigerfest lineup in full…


Wed 5
Blueflint / Andi Neate / Andy Tucker & The Scattered Family, @ Electric Circus (White Noise night). 7pm, £3

Thu 6
Phoebe Kreutz / Casey / Emily Scott / The Stantons, @ Wee Red Bar. 7pm, £6

Sun 9
17 Seconds Records night: X-Lion Tamer / The Wildhouse / The Gothenburg Address, @ Roxy Art House. 7pm, £6

Tue 11
TV21 / Boycotts / Midas Fall, @ Cabaret Voltaire. 7pm, £7

Wed 12
is this music? presents: Jesus H. Foxx / There Will Be Fireworks, @ Electric Circus (White Noise night). 7pm, £3

Thu 13
17 Seconds Records night: Chris Bradley / Dirty Cuts / Last Battle, @ Roxy Art House. 7pm, £6

Fri 14
Martin Stephenson / Alex Cornish, @ Wee Red Bar. 7pm, £10


Thu 20 May
Ambulances / Vertis / Crayons. 7.30pm, £5

Fri 21 May
Fence Records night: King Creosote / Withered Hand / Rozi Plain. 7.30pm, £10

Sat 22 May
Malcolm Middleton / Spare Snare. 7.30pm, £10


Fri 21 May
The Unwinding Hours / Katerwaul, @ Tunnels (Interesting Music Promotions). 8pm, £8 / £6

…and no, for the umpteenth time, the Gothenburg Address are not signed to 17 Seconds Records. But – rather like with Midas Fall – I felt they should be on the festival.

A few more sounds to whet your appetite…

King Creosote -‘Klutz.’ mp3

Ambulances -‘Cease To Exist.’ mp3

Malcolm Middleton -‘Red Travellin’ Socks.’ mp3

Unwinding Hours -‘Knut.’ mp3

Withered Hand -‘Religious Songs.’ mp3

2007…pretty good year for music so far

Thank goodness -I’m now off school for two and a half weeks. I may even be feeling human at the end of it all.

I know I often post covers on a Friday, but I thought today I would post a handful of tracks that I’ve really been enjoying this year. Some of them -Gasp! Shock! Horror! were hits. I’ve posted about Penny Century, Emma Pollock and Katie Sutherland a lot this year, and flagged up how much I’ve enjoyed Bat For Lashes and Wiley, but I thought I would highlight some other stuff I’ve loved.

Kate Nash -‘Foundations.’ mp3

King Creosote -‘Leslie.’ mp3

Tiny Dancers -‘I Will Wait For You.’ mp3

Calvin Harris -‘Acceptable in the 80s.’ mp3

Thrushes -‘Aidan Quinn.’ mp3

Justice -‘D.A.N.C.E.’ mp3

Hot Chip -‘My Piano.’ mp3

Von Sudenfed -‘Fledermaus Can’t Get It.’ mp3

Timbaland -‘Give It To Me.’ mp3

Battles -‘Atlas.’ mp3

If you like the tracks, support the artists involved, and leave feedback.

It’s going to be tough deciding my Top 50 tracks this year…

Gig review: King Creosote/Emma Pollock

Gig review: King Creosote/Emma Pollock

Queen’s Hall, Edinburgh, September 29, 2007

Well, it has been a quieter month for gigs here round at 17 Seconds Towers. After going to seven during August (not bad for someone in their thirties!). But with Emma Pollock supporting King Creosote at the Queen’s Hall…I couldn’t not, could I?

This was the third time I’ve seen Emma Pollock this year, although the first time since the release of her debut solo album. The only thing I could possibly say against her set is that it was too short. Otherwise, she seemed to be excited to be back at the Queen’s Hall (I saw her with the Delgados here in 2003 and 2005) and played a storming set. Opening with ‘If Silence Means That Much To You’ the half a dozen songs she plays remind me just how Watch The Fireworks has become a firm favourite here at 17 seconds Towers. ‘Adrenaline’ with that piano riff gets me everytime, and is currently my fabvourite track of the year, for what it’s worth. She finishes with ‘The Optimist’ and I’m gutted that she’s off again so quickly. May she return to Edinburgh a.s.a.p. I do not understand how this album only debuted at 30 on the indie charts -it deserves far better.

King Creosote AKA Kenny Anderson also jokes about chart positions, chuckling at the fact that his latest album Bombshell ‘peaked at 90 in the charts and is racing towards 200.’ It doesn’t reflect how popular he is in Scotland, to say nothing of how good he is. (Then again, when have the charts ever reflected how good and artist is? Don’t even get me started on personal taste. Some things just go far deeper than that.)
He comes on solo, introducing himself as King Creosote, but it’s hard to believe that a person in this sold-out gig cannot know who this man is. Joined by the band on the second song ‘Nooks’ it’s clear just how together they are as a live act, particularly with fellow Fence Collective member Johnny Lynch AKA the Pictish Trail on guitar (and vocals to melt your heart). Indeed the harmonies and chiming guitars of Mr. Lynch should not be underestimated as to the impact on the live impact of these songs.

For it’s the songs that have brought people here, even more than that voice, and the growing legend of the Fence collective and label and the self-released CD-Rs and the Fence Homegame festivals. ‘Spystick’ has one of the best couplets I’ve heard this year ‘She’s one of a dozen but you’ve seen the sight of the other eleven.’ And he’s got a great sense of humour that is gently self-deprecating, hugely endearing and very genuine. Strapping on an accordion for Bombshell opener he reminds us that ‘the definition of a gentleman is one who can play the accordion but chooses not to.’ Hell, there aren’t many people that I’d say this of, but I suspect he could make an album of just voice and accordion and it would be fab.

When I first encountered KC’s music, I lazily pigeonholed them as folk, but it’s clear that they take those folk elements and rock with them in their own wonderful way, no more so than on KC Rules OK’s ‘My Favourite Girl.’ Mrs. 17 Seconds hadn’t been convinced when we’d seen KC on a bill with Aberfeldy and My Latest Novel, but she was well and truly won over tonight.

Fantastic on wax and live…what does it take for the rest of the world to wake up to two of Scotland’s greatest?


King Creosote -‘My Favourite Girl.’ mp3

King Creosote -Nooks.’ mp3

Emma Pollock -‘Adrenaline.’ mp3

Emma Pollock -‘Limbs.’ mp3