Scottish Album of the Year: Longlist 2017

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On Wednesday 24 May, The 2017 SAY Award Longlist will be revealed in front of a live audience at Glasgow’s O2 ABC Glasgow. With exclusive live performances from SAY Award alumni Admiral Fallow, Steve Mason (acoustic) and Mungo’s Hi Fi with YT.

Boasting a lucrative £20,000 prize for the winner and nine runner up prizes of £1,000 each, the award celebrates, promotes and rewards the most outstanding Scottish albums released each year. Respected by artists and valued by the industry, The SAY Award is responsible for a surge in musical discovery and an explosion of impassioned debate on social media.

Check out the eligible albums here

BMX Bandits Forever and Ever by Duglas Stewart

We’d like to say a huge thank you to Duglas for taking the time out to write another guest blog for us. In this piece, Duglas takes us in detail through some of the key tracks and influences on the long-awaited new BMX Bandits album, BMX Bandits Forever And Ever, and also casts some light on the circumstances that led to the recording. We feel very lucky to be able to bring it to you.

And there’s more! BMX Bandits have also very generously contributed a fantastic bumper prize pack for one lucky winner. To find out what’s up for grabs, and to enter the draw, check out our Facebook page.

BMX Bandits Forever will be released on Elefant Records on May 19th 2017 on vinyl, c.d. and digital formats.  There will be a special album launch concert at St. Luke’s in Glasgow on May 27th. And now, here’s Duglas:

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BMX Bandits Forever is a very positive title, upbeat sounding and triumphant. But this album was made during the darkest and most difficult times I’ve experienced and the songs on it are a document of these times, and about my personal internal battle for survival. That may sound melodramatic but I honestly didn’t think I’d still be here but I am still here, phew. I currently feel a bit like Dorothy in The Wizard of Oz. I’ve been through the craziest and most destructive storm in my life and although I’m not home yet I’m trying my best to stay on the right road. Hopefully I’ll get there in the end.

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Photo by Chloe Philip

BMX Bandits Forever is an album about loss and mortality, about battling dark forces but there’s light and beauty in there too as it’s also, not surprisingly for BMX Bandits, an album about love. For me the title isn’t so much triumphant as it is defiant, it’s me saying a big “FUCK YOU” in the face of all of those dark forces and shitty people that conspire to defeat us. It’s also a sacred promise from me to the things I believe in. It’s a sacred promise to love, beauty, kindness, friendship and to BMX Bandits. I hope you like it.

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Running Up That Hill- A Celebration of Kate Bush

As passionate lovers of the music of Kate Bush, we are stupidly excited about the impending Running Up That Hill – A Celebration of the Work of Kate Bush, which has been curated by former Delgado and Chemikal Underground doyenne Emma Pollock.

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First commissioned by the True North festival in Aberdeen last autumn, there will now be another run up that hill at the ABC, Glasgow next weekend when the likes of Karine Polwart, Kathryn Joseph and Field Music tackle her mighty catalogue, including songs which have never been performed live by Bush herself.

Emma is no stranger to quality tribute shows, as she has performed as part of Bring It All Home, the magnificent Gerry Rafferty tribute which debuted at Celtic Connections in 2012, though she says, “I prefer to call this a celebration because I always think the word ‘tribute’ means someone’s died – God forbid that that ever be the case, I hope Kate is the first woman that defies death!”

We asked all the participants to tell us about their favourite Kate track, suite or album – some picked the songs they will perform at the show, so take that as a spoiler alert. But first, Emma encapsulates her love for the great Kate:

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Richard Jobson on The Skids: 1977-2017

The Skids were one of Scotland’s most successful punk exports. Formed in Dunfermline in 1997 and fronted by the idiosyncratic double act of teenage singer Richard Jobson and gifted guitarist Stuart Adamson (later to form the much loved Big Country), they scored a handful of enduring hits, including Into the Valley, Working for the Yankee Dollar and The Saints Are Coming (subsequently covered by U2 and Green Day in 2006), in their short lifetime.

The group reformed, minus the sadly departed Adamson, for their 30th birthday in 2007 and now they’re doing the timewarp again to celebrate their 40th anniversary. A new album, Burning Cities, will be released in the summer. Before then, there’s an anniversary tour, commencing this week. And before that, there’s our chat with Richard Jobson, who regaled us with tales of the band’s Fifer roots, unique worldview and Apollo memories…
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Punk was essentially an urban thing so where we came from, the landscape of rural Fife, the mining villages that we were all born out of made us slightly different. Our view of the world was non-urban. My mother sang sentimental folk songs from her Irish heritage and that was ingrained in me and also in Stuart, so there was a folk tradition there. My father was a coal miner so I knew lots of those types of songs, so mixed with where we were from with a bit of the edge of punk created something that I think was quite unique.

I remember when we first saw Johnny & the Self-Abusers [later to regroup as Simple Minds], for example, they were much more elegant, they were much more Velvet Underground-inspired, as a lot of those Glasgow bands were at the time. We weren’t. Our influences were much wider and rooted in something else, and I think that eventually came out in the music, with the things I sang about and Stuart Adamson put to music with his very particular guitar sound. And it had a toughness. The Skids were not romantic at all, they were more nihilistic.

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Butcher Boy competition

Hot on the heels of their brilliant sold out benefit gig for Govanhill Baths, we have a competition to win a copy of Bad Things Happen When It’s Quiet the new EP from Butcher Boy.

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The EP, released on a limited edition of 500 gatefold 7” singles by Damaged Goods Records, is a three-part story told from three perspectives and was recorded in Glasgow with long-time collaborator Brian McNeill.
The songs on the record are:-
November 1947, Storm Warning In Effect
July 1950, The Captain is the Whale
November 1951, Bad Things Happen When It’s Quiet

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Written over the course of a series of autumn and winter trips to the Cape Cod National Seashore, the songs feature guest vocals from Anna Miles, Moog synthesisers, a choir, a string quartet and a weather radio, bought for twenty-five cents at a holiday fair in Brewster, MA…

To enter Go to our Facebook page and share and like.

Electric Honey Records celebrates 25 years

Electric Honey Records, the record label run by the students on the music business course at Glasgow Kelvin (formerly Stow) College, celebrates its 25th birthday this year with single releases from singer/songwriter Calum Frame, funk outfit Dopesickfly and garage band The Shambolics, and a rather fine debut album by Glasgow band Pronto Mama, called Any Joy.

Electric Honey has been described by no less an organ than Uncut magazine as “the most successful student-run label in the world”, and who are we to argue with a back catalogue which includes Belle & Sebastian’s classic debut album, Tigermilk, which became the label’s first landmark release, swiftly followed by Snow Patrol’s debut single Starfighter Pilot, released under their original name Polar Bear, and Biffy Clyro’s debut Thekidswhopoptodaywillrocktomorrow EP.

Ahead of this year’s annual label showcase at the West End Festival, we spoke to some of the movers and the shakers associated with the label, including current and former course directors (and 80s pop stars) Ken McCluskey and Alan Rankine, and band members from the label’s three most illustrious alumni.

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The SAY Award 2017: Live at the Longlist

Admiral Fallow, Steve Mason (acoustic) and Mungo’s Hi-Fi to perform at ‘Live at the Longlist’, a brand new event exclusively announcing The SAY Award 2017 Longlist.

On Wednesday 24th May, The SAY (Scottish Album of the Year) Award 2017 Longlist will be revealed in front of a live audience at Glasgow’s O₂ ABC. Home to The SAY Award ceremony back in 2015, the venue welcomes the Award back for this new ticketed event where SAY Award alumni Admiral Fallow, Steve Mason (acoustic) and Mungo’s Hi Fi will perform live, and 20 outstanding Scottish albums will be announced as The SAY Award 2017 Longlist. Each of these 20 albums will be in the running for the £20,000 grand prize, as well as the coveted title of Scottish Album of the Year 2017.

Tickets are available here

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Robert Kilpatrick, Projects and Operations Manager at the Scottish Music Industry Association (SMIA), said:

“To announce this year’s SAY Award Longlist, we’re delighted to introduce this fantastic new live music event in Glasgow, allowing music fans to engage with the award more than ever before. Admiral Fallow, Steve Mason and Mungo’s Hi Fi have each been celebrated through previous SAY Award campaigns for fantastic album releases, so what better way to announce this year’s top 20 albums than by inviting them to play at ‘Live at the Longlist’, a new event celebrating great Scottish albums both old and new”. Continue reading