Album Review: Best Girl Athlete

Words: The Captain

Photo: George Mackie

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Following her debut album, “Carve Every Word” in 2015, Katie Buchan – aka Best Girl Athlete – has returned with her brand new album, the self-titled Best Girl Athlete, which she wrote prior to turning 18 with her father Charley.

Katie has already done a lot in her young years. Check it out!

She has:
– Toured Europe AND the U.S
– Released an album that was nominated for a Scottish Alternative Music Award.
– Carve Every Word was named the second best Scottish album of 2015 by Ravechild and received acclaim from people like The Line of Best Fit, Clash Magazine, Folk Radio, Artrocker, The Sunday Herald and BBC Radio Scotland’s Vic Galloway and Roddy Hart.

“…groove-riddled folk-pop…” – The Line of Best Fit

“… assured artistry…” – Clash

“…pretty amazing…” – Folk Radio

I was lucky enough to listen to this on vinyl as well as Spotify.
Big thanks to Charley for sending me the vinyl in the post and my mum for letting me use her record player!

The best thing about this album is that every song is different. You never know what to expect as each track ends and the next starts, it’s amazing! One song you have strings and eloquent vocals, the next you’re pleasantly surprised with some rap, then suddenly you feel like you’re at an accomplished pianist’s concert.

Katie is definitely an accomplished musician, her voice is strong and powerful and you feel as if she is singing directly to you. As each song is so different, it almost feels like both you, and your best mate who is TOTALLY different to you, could both identify with the music & lyrics on the album.
Each song can stand on its own, following the idea that these days it seems that most people like to consume music through individual songs and not whole albums.

Her music is different, it’s original and it’s certainly something for those with a very wide music taste, it’s definitely something you could play to your gran without worrying.

Having to pick a favourite is always so hard! In this case, I say… BUGGER THAT! I’m not picking a favourite, the entire album is my favourite!

The album is out NOW via Fitlike Records. It’s available to buy on iTunes and stream on Spotify.

Official Site // Facebook // Twitter // SoundCloud

 

E.P Review: All These Days by Gordon’s Alive!

Words: The Captain

Photo: Micky Cooper

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In the words of Kuzco… “BOOM BABY!” (if you don’t know what I mean, watch “The Emperor’s New Groove”, you won’t regret it). Some swish new music to get my lugs around.

“All These Days” is Gordon’s Alive!’s second E.P and they are very much rockin’ (geddit?) the old school rock style. It’s super awesome! Good riffs, nice vocals and I can feel my foot tapping along of its own accord.

If you like the “vocal or instrumental sounds (or both) combined in such a way as to produce beauty of form, harmony, and expression of emotion”* that AC/DC and Led Zepplin make, you’ll LOVE Gordon’s Alive!. Trust me, four songs ain’t enough… WE WANT MORE!

If you want to see them live, then listen up!

Live at Harleys – 16th September 2017 @ Harleys, Ayr
EVENT LINK

SAHROCK – 11th November 2017 @ Ivory Blacks, Glasgow
EVENT LINK  

6th October 2017 @ Smash, Edinburgh

Facebook // Twitter // Spotify // Amazon // iTunes 

*definition of music, by Google Dictionary.

 

Single Review: Space Junk by L-Space

Words: The Captain

Photo: Gail Watt (The Woozle)

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I first saw L-Space as a support for Eyre Llew back in March and I really liked them, so when I was approached by the band to review their new single, I was rather elated.

As I said when I reviewed them live: “Think if Doctor Who and Red Dwarf got together and made a band, this would be it”. I still stand by that statement. It helps that I am an avid Doctor Who fan and also think Red Dwarf is pretty cool (I’m gonna eat you little fishy, I’m gonna eat you little fissssssssh!).

Judging by the name of this track, the other tracks I’ve heard and their stage talk, they LOVE space and this certainly comes across in this track. “Space Junk” is all kinds of weird and wonderful, with the emphasis on the latter. When I listen to it, I feel like I’m floating about in some kind of disco bubble in space and I’m having a party with other people who bounce by in their own disco bubbles and everyone is having a great time.

The synths emanating from my speakers (alongside the sweet, yet ever so slightly and nicely distorted vocals) make my room feel like that bubble I mentioned just before. This track is super cool and I urge you to listen to it, along with their other stuff. If you like what you hear, or think “that sounds so utterly amazingly cool I have to hear it on stage NOWWWWW!”, then you don’t have to wait too long! Here is a list of their next few dates, they’re going to be very busy!

  • The Flying Duck, Glasgow – 27th July,
  • MugStock,  Mugdock Country Park – 29th July (Chameleon Stage @ 13:40 & Oxjam Stage @ 15:15)
  • Merchant City Festival @ Tron Theatre, Glasgow – 30th July (with Fox Star Records) 
  • Opium, Edinburgh – 13th of August. 

Website // Facebook // Twitter // SoundCloud // BandCamp 

 

Single Review: The Game by Conor Heafey

Words: The Captain

Photo: George Robinson

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When you search for Conor Heafey’s page on Facebook, it pops up with “Rainy-day easy listening songs”, which I think describes his music PERFECTLY.

The Game is the title track from his recently released E.P and I’ll start off by saying that I think it’s Fabulous! (So fabulous, it needed a capital F!).

I think what I like most about the track that it’s so simple, Now, please don’t think that I mean it’s boring, far from it! What I mean is that there’s no over-driven guitars, no erratic solos, no trying to decipher what is being sung. However, it is INCREDIBLY catchy and his voice has a sort of gruffness to it, which sounds rather lovely. That mixed, with a great bassline and guitar, that slowly fade away as the track ends, makes a wonderful song.

Find him on:

Facebook // Twitter

You can find the WHOLE E.P on the following sites:

Spotify  // Apple Music  // iTunes  // Bandcamp  // Soundcloud

P.S. Sorry for all the caps, I felt they were needed + I got excited.

E.P Review: DO/RE by Blair Coron

Words: The Captain

Photo: Nicole Stapinski

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This is the debut E.P from Blair Coron and to cut a long story short, it’s bloody brilliant!

I grew up listening to A LOT of classical, jazz and folk music, so this E.P really spoke to me. Every single one of the five tracks is so exquisitely written and performed that it moves me to my very core. I can really feel the music flowing about the room I’m sitting in, bouncing off every object and filling the space with the beautiful sound. I almost feel like I’m in one of those movie scenes, where everything stops and goes into slow motion, then speeds up again and I am the only person there, running through the rain, spinning round and round on the teacups at the funfair or speeding down the motorway laughing.

Perhaps the track that stands out the MOST to me, purely because it differs so much to the others, is Track 4. Simply named “Abstract #32” it is a spoken word piece, with more music in the background. He is so softly spoken and the words seem to pitter patter across the keys with the fingers playing them.

Of course, I am only listening to this music on my very cheap speakers in my home, so I cannot begin to imagine so beautiful this must sound on a proper system or even live! I can really see this music being played in one of those empty/abandoned gasometers. I have heard music in one of those before and the acoustics are amazing.

Not to harp on, but this E.P is so, so, so amazing and beautiful and wonderful. Blair really is a very talented man (not only did he write all the music, but he also recorded it, mixed it, mastered it AND made the artwork). I am very excited to hear what he brings us next! I EMPLORE you to go and listen to his E.P and buy a copy! You will not be disappointed. You can find him on the platforms below.

Facebook // BandCamp 

Single Review: Lovinit by The Recoupes

Words: The Captain

Photo: Paul Zanetti

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Ooooh-la-la! Some new music for my ears! Brilliant!

Within the first few seconds of pressing play, I was in love with song. I tend to establish my liking for a song in that period. So we’re already off to a good start, well done guys! It’s a funky and  fresh sound, with slightly raw and rough vocals layered over. I can definitely imagine dancing to this live, I’m a terrible dancer, but for these guys I’d do it! The band sound so tight and clear, it’s obvious they have it together.

I may be slightly weird, but when I listen to a song, I try to imagine a video to it. For instance a road trip or a night out etc. If I can’t see a video, I tend to like it. I like being able to imagine for myself what the song might bring up a picture of. I can totally see a video for this song, something with a beach, and a dinosaur outfit. Possibly… let me know if you need any extras guys! I do a mean T-Rex impression!

The single is out NOW and you can find it on all the following sites. Over and out!

Website  // Facebook   //  Twitter  //  Instagram 

YouTube  //  Soundcloud  //  Spotify 

 

Live Review: The Holy Smokes, The Baroque & Michael Barker @ Sneaky Pete’s 14/03/17

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(L-R: Michael Barker, The Holy Smokes, The Baroque)

Photos: Beth M Cameron 

Words: The Captain

It’s another Tuesday night in Edinburgh. It’s cold and raining, so what better place to be than inside helping The Holy Smokes celebrate the release of their new EP!

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First up is Michael Barker, who introduces himself and says he’ll be playing a mixture of covers and original songs. He makes every single cover his own and performs them so beautifully. If I had to pick a favourite cover, it would be “Adventure Time” by a band called Bry. It was beautiful and quite moving. He also has some good “stage banter” and talks about this “mad hair flapping” and that he doesn’t want to “look like that wonderwall guy” *cue audience laughter*.
Michael has an incredible voice and some damn good guitar playing skills. Unfortunately, I didn’t catch the name of the two original songs he did for his set, but they were amazing!

You can find him on Facebook and YouTube!

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Next up is The Baroque with his incredibly soft vocals layered over an electric guitar with a laptop acting as a piano. This guy is seriously cool and amazing! The music is beautiful to put it very simply and I don’t think any more words could describe it (but seriously, it’s damn good). He has a few funny pun song names too which make me giggle a little for exmaple “Away in a Stranger” from his first album (as he points out, he’s only got the one). and “Sunshine on Grief” (for all you non-Scotland residing folks, that a pun of “Sunshine on Leith” which reminds me… I must actually see that film at some point… anyway…. his last song is from his upcoming album (Songs of Joy and Rhythm) and is called “Song of Joy” and, just like all the rest, it’s amazing and super cool and yeah, you need to check him out! Like now… I’m watching you…..

You can find him on Facebook!

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Last, but by no means at all least, come The Holy Smokes! I’ve reviewed these guys on record before, and loved them, but this my first live show and I’m VERY excited. Like “omg a new kitten” excited. They start out by playing the title track from their new E.P “Let’s Go Out Drinking” and it’s rocky, it’s fast it’s awesome! I’m stood at the back doing a little bum boogie (there’s a lot of people in the venue and I’m small and didn’t fancy getting squashed, plus that gives more room to bum boogie).

They play a lot of their songs that I already know and a few I haven’t heard before so this was a good chance to hear the difference between record and live. The difference? There wasn’t any, they are just as fabulously good live as they are on record, something not all acts can master. They even dedicate their last few songs to the “most dedicated fan in the room”. Which is a guy called Callum (sorry if that’s the wrong spelling, there’s many different ways) who came all the way from Glasgow to see them *cue crowd cheering*. They even point out that they are selling handmade t-shirts at the merch stand, along with hard copies of their new E.P.

I implore you yo check them out because they are so super duper fantasicly cool and awesome. You can find them on Facebook, YouTube and BandCamp 

Goodbye Electric Circus

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Words and Photo: The Captain

On the 25th of March (this Saturday) The Electric Circus will close its doors for the final time after 7 years.

The Electric Circus has played host to many amazing acts be it touring or local and if you read a lot of our reviews, you’ll know we spent many an hour at this awesome venue, taking in some of the acts that played. The first review we EVER did was at this very venue. It was like a second home.

Edinburgh is losing one of the best medium sized venues and it is very sad. It’s in such a perfect place! You need to get the last train home? Nae bother pal, you’re right next to the train station. Hungry after a good night out? McDonald’s is just round the corner. Need a taxi? THEY’RE RIGHT OUTSIDE! It’s not just the placement of the venue. So many acts need a reasonable sized venue to play in if they;re coming to Edinburgh because they’re so popular that they can’t play a smaller venue. Of course there ARE still other venues in Edinburgh but The Electric Circus has not just been home to gigs and karaoke but also the music industry event Born to be Wide where lots of people have been able to network with proper industry professionals from all sectors of the music industry. If you’ve ever been, you’ve probably seen me dotting about trying to make friends. This event was so paramount to my own education and I’ve heard from others that this event helped them to grow too.

Of course, The Electric Circus also caters to those people who just love to sing, with 7 private karaoke rooms where you can sing your heart out with a plethora of songs. Which brings me onto my next point, the awesome staff!

The staff are certainly part of the character and allure of the venue. Whether it’s the sound guy (Joe you are a legend) making sure every band sounds epic, the bar staff making you delicious drinks,  the karaoke staff making sure everyone has a good time or the people behind the scenes making sure YOU get the best night ever with the bands that play and the general running of the venue. I know that these people are so awesome because I used to be part of the amazing family that is #teamEC. I worked down on the karaoke corridor for 6 months from 2014-2015 and I could not have asked for a more kind, caring, fun and lovely work family.

In the following photo are just SOME of the past and present staff. There are many more people who aren’t in this photo and if they were we wouldn’t all fit.It’s sad think this is the last generation of the team that there will ever be. (That’s me in the red shirt with the lovely Lauren to the left).

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(Photo: Sara Cameron Photography)

Here is a rundown of the last few events The Electric Circus will ever host. Thank you for so many wonderful years, make sure you go out with a bang, you will be missed!

TONIGHT (March 23rd) – Songwriters Celebration Open Mic

TOMORROW (March 24th) – Indigo Velvet/Dancing on Tables + Special Guests (Gig)
TOMORROW (March 24th) – Magic Nostalgic (Clubnight)

SATURDAY (March 25th) – Horsebeach/Mad Gerald/Sevenpenny Nightmare (Gig)
SATURDAY (March 25th) – EC All Stars (Last ever Clubnight)

Song Review: Out in the Ocean by Megan D

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(Photo Credit: Graham Mackenzie Photography)

Megan D has always captivated me with her unique, soft voice. This song is no different. She has her own style that really does stand out, with her Scottish accent coming through (because what’s better than an artist signing in their own accent, especially if it’s Scottish?). This song is so very beautiful and I’m glad we can hear it now, as there is no official release date yet. Please let it be soon Megan!

Find her on Social Media!

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Single Review: The Girl From Dundee by Amy Lou

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(Photo Credit: Hannah Findlay)

The new single from Amy Lou is simply fabulous! Amy’s vocals are soft and sweet, layered over beautiful flowing music, and what sounds like a Glockenspiel which is super awesome. Amy reminds me a bit of Lucy Spraggan with this single, armed with her acoustic guitar and a set of clever, charming lyrics. The song is perfect to sit down and listen to on repeat. I’ve been humming this song for days on end now, apologies to everyone on my floor, you know you love it!

The Girl From Dundee is out TODAY! Happy December! 🎄🎄🎄

Find her on Social Media!
 

You can listen to/buy the single here:

spotify1itunesjpegsoundcloud