Presented in Widescreen

Saturday, 28 February 2009

findo gask - "one eight zero"

This has been out a while, but I've only just spotted the lovely animated for it - Findo Gask's recent single "One Eight Zero". I have fond memories of playing shows with the early incarnation of Findo back in 2004, when they were barely out of school and before they had migrated to Glasgow. They were great then too, but pretty different to what they are now - pretty shoegazey. "Bright Ideas" was a great tune, would love to hear an updated version of it.

Anyway, things seem to be going really well for them, 2 well received singles in the last year or so and remixes for Bloc Party, Psapp and the Long Blondes. Can't be long now before there's an album and superstardom - frankly, if La Roux is the best that the "industry" has to offer, it'll be a massive crime for Findo Gask to become anything less than gods.

As for the single itself, all three tracks are fantastic - it actually sounds more like the opening three songs of an album. "One Eight Zero" you can hear for yourself above, "Jigsaw" is similar but more downbeat, with big trancey synth stabs and "Nubo" is gorgeous, all languid trumpet lines, vocal harmonies and chiming guitar. Overall, the sound is somewhere between Hot Chip, Cocteau Twins, Cornelius and Barbara Morgenstern.

Buy/download here.

Monday, 23 February 2009

the elecrolites + descartes at destroy disco, sat 21 feb 2009

After my recent experiments with 35mm film SLRs, my urge to get a digital SLR grew stronger. I finally gave in last week and got a Nikon D40x with 18-55mm lens. I've had a play about with it, and acting as the Electrolites driver on Saturday night gave me an opportunity to try it out properly.

Destroy Disco was an event at Kinkell Byre, just outside St Andrews, in a converted barn that's available for basically whatever you want to use it for. The line up was mostly DJs (headlined by Mylo and Erol Alkan) with the exception of Descartes and the Electrolites, both from Dundee, opening with live sets in the main room.

The shots were all taken in low light with no flash. Not all the results were perfect, but I think the success rate was definitely higher than with my Fujifilm S5700 - the benefit of a better lens was felt.

I've still got a set of photos taken on film to scan and upload, will hopefully get through them soon.

kaput: fat sams, fri 06 feb 2009

Here, in handy playlist form, is the video of our set supporting The Hazey Janes at Fat Sams a couple of weeks ago. Filmed by Mr Christopher Lee-Marr, of the wonderful Esperi. The audio is quite quiet, so you'll need to turn it up loud.

Thursday, 19 February 2009

marions - "another hour"

After I got back from Stockholm in August, I had every intention of writing a bit about the bands I saw and records I bought while over there, but like most of my plans that fell by the wayside.

Of all the bands I saw, I think FM Belfast, Yamon Yamon and Marions made the greatest impression. At the time I was disappointed to discover that Marions didn't have any recordings available, but when I got back I found out that Flora & Fauna had signed them for an album, the first taste of which ("Another Hour") was made available the other day, with the album to follow in April.

On the night I saw them the line up was vocals, keyboard, bass, percussion and violin - no drums and no guitar. I've often wanted to do something similar myself, and I thought it worked brilliantly, especially in the small seated theatre/concert hall they were playing in - probably no more than 200 capacity.

Anyway, "Another Hour" is lovely. I can remember it from hearing it once, six months ago. The arrangement is changed slightly on the recording, but the vocals remain just as striking.

[MP3] Marions - Another Hour

Monday, 9 February 2009

general round up

Not much activity for a week, but there have been a few things I've intended to write about. Unfortunately, they can be crammed into a few sentences...

Have now seen both Frost/Nixon and Milk. Won't bore anyone with attempts at reviews, but will say that both films are good and worth seeing. If you only have time for one, make it Milk. It's wonderful.

I've finished reading Join Me by Danny Wallace - since seeing Yes Man a month or so ago, I've read all three of his books. None of them are particularly hard going, but they are all good - enthusiastic, funny and touching in places. Or, in places, touching. Nothing dodgy. I'm not sure reading the book was enough to make me want to become a Joinee though, I think I'd find doing a random act of kindness every Friday a bit tricky - anyway, I try to be kind all the time!

My step-dad gave me his old 35mm SLR, went to Camperdown to play about with it. I took a couple of rolls, which you can see pretty much all of here. I'm a little disappointed that some of them didn't come out as I'd expected (many of them a lot darker than I'd anticipated), but looking at them now I think there's some good first efforts there. Anyway, the point of getting a film-based SLR was to force myself to think more when setting up the shot, so it's all a learning experience. Excuse some of the dodgy scans...

Kaput played at Fat Sams on Friday night with the Hazey Janes. The Hazeys were fantastic, probably the best I've ever seen them, and we all enjoyed playing our set. It was the first time in nearly 11 years of playing gigs that my sister had got to see one of my bands. She said she enjoyed it. The whole set was filmed, will get that uploaded once I've actually seen it!

I'm beginning to think that writing a little about every record/CD I buy this year may be harder than anticipated, after an unexpected trip to Edinburgh a couple of weeks ago found me in Fopp, and then on Saturday morning I got the chance to rake through all the new promos in wallet has taken a beating. It makes me sad that there's a generation of "music lovers" who will never really experience the joy of spending a chunk of your Saturday raking through random CDs, hoping to strike gold, and getting a bit of banter and recommendations while you do it. Sure, there's a social element to or some torrent clients, but it's impersonal, nowhere near the same as actually speaking to other people in person about music. I just hope that it's not something that's completely lost too soon, especially in smaller cities/towns. I'll try and write a January round-up when I get off night shifts.

That's pretty much all for now, I'm off to watch A Room For Romeo Brass.