Bloody work !! Always getting in the way of the good shit. Cant blame it really though – should’ve been more organised. I’m talking, of course, about missing the majority of this years goNORTH. I’m not going to bleat on about what it is and what it’s for – that’s elsewhere on the blog or here. So I made it along for the last 15 minutes or so of Thursday evenings reception at the Mercure in Inverness Church Street. Met by my colleague and Jack Daniels aficionado, Terry at the door with a tale of a hobbit playing guitar.
What the fuck ?? Went in got a beer and proceeded to talk shite to all and sundry – mainly Netsounds, Peenko, The Pel etc and thought no more of the Hobbit then it slowly dawned on me that Billy Boyd was siting at the far end of the bar flanked by two musicians and, get this, he was singing and playing a guitar. Beecake is the band apparently – didn’t do a great deal for me I have to admit but that was probably a lot to do with the venue. Like gigging at a carvery Id say. At least Id now worked out the Hobbit connection. A wander round the town was in order so myself and the Netsounds Team set off to see what we could see/hear. First discovery was the wonderfully named smoothiesforme playing on the Bedford Stage as Thursdays opening act. Tall lassie with acoustic guitar (who now goes by the name Holly Drummond.) We have a few guitar playing lassies on the scene up here already but gave a couple of her tunes a listen before hitting Blackfriars.
Now I’m not a fan of Blackfriars at all having been asked to leave by a pissed up publican for dancing outwith the designated area. I waltzed with my wife for less than 20 seconds one Saturday night when Rooty Ma Toot Big Band were gigging there and was berated by the owner – bloke could hardly suck his own thumb at the time he was so pissed. Very professional !! Aint been back since but made an exception seeing as it was the THE POP COP, SONG BY TOAD AND PEENKO PRESENT: THE SCOTTISH BLOGGERS STAGE.
Chris Devotion and The Expectations were the first and only band I experienced in Blackfriars tonight – I’m afraid the memory of being dicked around by a dick just soured the venue for me and always will. Pity. These guys were good – solid down the line rock n roll with a hint of Dr Feelgood in there somewhere.
Blackfriars was where I saw the marketing behemoth that is Team Kapowski roll into action and Shanghai Vic Galloway with the gift of party poppers emblazoned with their name and time and name of venue – genius !!
Madhatters was the venue for DETOUR SCOTLAND SHOWCASE. Messrs McCrae and Weaver had fired together a tasty treat which kicked off with Elgin loons, Cleavers. Theyd just kicked off (literally) as we arrived. We walked into Madhatters to be met with the singer/guitarist Mr D Crombie passing us going the other way atop the tables kicking pint glasses out-of-the-way. My kinda band. Everything up to 11 including intensity.
You can’t argue with a band who’s set comprises of tracks like Sabretooth Girl, Brian Johnson’s Hat A.K.A. Don’t Shit on my Blue Suede Shoes, Hulk Hands (Cryin’ into my cafetière), My Headstone Caves Into Yours and Break Yer Bones. Me ? I fucking loved it !! No arguments here
Having stopped in past to say HELLO to The Little Mill fellas earlier in the evening at soundcheck I now popped roon past Hush to check out the full set. Usual fare – excellent. The Little Mill of Happiness just get better every time I see them. Hush seemed like a strange setting for them – as far as I know it was a last-minute addition but fuck knows why as The Mill are one of the most innovative and exciting bands we have on the local ‘scene’ at the moment – that word scene is always said through gritted teeth nowadays. Onwards and upwards (or southwards to be exact with these guys making further inroads into the Glasgow consciousness more and more these days. Good to see – too many bands happy to rest on their laurels up here gigging the same places and same faces encouraged by same faces in same places. Yeah – I know – sounds crappy but I know what I mean – buy me a pint sometime and I’ll explain it.
Nelson Can is a Danish, all-female band. The band consists of Signe Tobiassen, Selina Lannie and Tami Harmony Panik Vibberstoft. They played in HUSH. Thats about as much as I can muster word-wise about these mad women. You NEED to check out their music so go here NOW !!
The Whisky River Band had some tuning/instrument/hearing issues toward the end of their set. Nobody else in Hush had any hearing issues so what the guys thought had sounded awful sounded brilliant as usual from out front. Methinks a stressful and busy time had got to the lads a bit – Rockness was the next night and the album launch is looming large on 23rd June.
The set comprised of all the hits from the charts, the Far East No 1 singles and Australian Tampax advert theme. (ok that’s just shite but they did play Dark Cloud, Open your Eyes, Take you There and Missed the Point among others.) Fuck all wrong with the sound, fuck all wrong with the music – great wee set and nobody complained (apart from The Whisky River Band but they’re their own hardest critics which isn’t always a bad thing. Take note some of the younger cockier acts kicking about at the moment. Actually get good before shouting about being good). Roll on the album launch !!
Shona ‘Plum‘ Maguire, the quine fae Alford that isn’t Emilie Sandie but whose music appeals to me far more than the teachers daughter does, performs lovely lovely music – on this occasion with Capital Keir MacCulloch. Swirling soundscapes and lilting vocals on beautiful tracks like Dirt, The Seed, Myriad and Secret Roots made for a mesmerizing set. The first act for me in Hush that complimented the mad nighclubby light situation. She came, she sang, she danced (in a clawlike fashion), she gave out prizes and at the end. Perfect Plum !!
So that’s us at the Ironworks now. Boozy as hell but still waving a camera about like I know what the fuck I’m doing with it. Scary bunch of talented snappers around tonight too but I just work away till I can afford the good stuff (like fast/prime enough lenses to catch Dave Hook in mid-air although I do like my blurry hits). Yeah the Odd Squad are in tonight so I’m a delighted bunny. Dinner the Sound tells me I looked like I was enjoying it – I guess that means I was lowping about like a dafty as usual.
With new single ‘Get Out Ma Headspace‘ Stanley Odd pulled no punches for their goNORTH Afterparty Show appearance. They played songs and she sang, he rapped and people (including me) drank hence the fairly sketchy write-up of said event. It all finished happily happy in the foyer of the Ironworks with Olaf Furniss of Wide Days covering me with an ink stamp before Uncle Vic smashed it up (stamp not face). This was all topped off by a ‘FEAR THE BEARD’ photo op after which I toddled off into the night fair tricket with myself oblivious to the horrible shitstorm that was to be RockNess the next day.
goNORTH I salute you – bloody marvellous wherever the bloody money comes from. Lots of bands to take photos of and dance my bad dances to – this all makes me happy happy joy joy. Roll on next year !!
Now please don’t be offended if I’ve just banged a photo or two of you on here and not really mentioned you, your band or your set. It was a long day and I saw a lot of bands and I’m not Q magazine. I do my best but I do like a beer or two and things get fuzzy. This has taken more than a week to get to what you see above so if I don’t get it posted now it’ll end up fucked off into the trash bin and forgotten about.