Monday, 26 January 2015

BAMS Award 2014 - Full Interview with James Graham


Ahead of the official announcement of the Scottish BAMS Award 2014 winner (full BAMS Award post here), I caught up with James Graham from The Twilight Sad in Mono, Glasgow to present the band's award and chat about the year the band have just had.   Here is that interview in full.

Congratulations, Nobody Wants To Be Here, Nobody Wants To Leave  is this years' winners of the Scottish BAMS award!  How does it feel?

James – Really good. I think I found out last week, and I told my Dad right away.  He was like, “well done son!”

No it’s great.  I’ve said a few times that last year was a big year for us, and to have released the record that we’ve released and to have got the reception that it’s got has been a massive thing for us.   I don’t want to be melodramatic and say it’s saved the band, but it kind of has in a way.  When you release something you don’t really know [how it will be received].  You can like it as much as you want, but ultimately in the long run, people have got to like it to have any sort of success or be able to make another one.  So to be voted number one for the BAMS is pretty mental for a miserable bunch of guys from Kilsyth.  It’s great though.  We really appreciate it, and things like this don’t happen to us all the time, so it’s really cool.

Previous winners of course include The National, The Phantom Band, Bill Wells and Aidan Moffat, and last year CHVRCHES. Good company to be amongst?

James – Aye I’m a fan of every single one of those bands and the records that won.  Bill and Aidan’s record [Everything’s Getting Older] is one of my favourite albums of all time.  I’ve actually heard the new one.  It could be, I don’t want to say but, it might be as good if not better.  He’s a dick.  I text him when I was listening to it, and I was like, “it’s amazing, you’re a prick, I hate you, you’re a genius.”

It’s great though, those bands are bands we aspire to be like.  And to be in that company is phenomenal.  To be in the position where we are mentioned in the same breath as those artists; 16-year old James would have told you to fuck off!  So aye it’s nice.  It’s been a good year for once.  Don’t worry we’re not going to write a happy album after it!

2014 seems to have been a pretty exciting year for the band, what's been your personal highlights of the year?

James – The first thing would be in January, we put out The Twilight Sad Live at Paisley Abbey with The Royal Scottish National Orchestra.   We released that for free in January whilst we were recording, and it showed the band in a different light.  I don’t think anyone ever expected to hear any of our songs with an 80-piece orchestra.   The complaint that we got from that was that people didn’t have to pay for it!   It would be really nice if we could release it [as a physical release] at some point, but as far as royalties go, if you are selling a record and having to pay 83 musicians, it is pretty impossible!

And then we re-issued our first record [Fourteen Autumns & Fifteen Winters], and we toured that as well.   Just because it wasn’t available on vinyl anymore, and we had the demos as well.  We just wanted to make a package of that.  I think it was a nice way to remind people about the band and that record, maybe reintroduce the band to people and introduce that record to people who had never heard it before.  I think it’s still a pretty special record.

And then there was Primavera, which was probably one of the best weekend we’ve ever had as a band.  We played two gigs.  One at the festival as the sun was going down looking over the sea.   And then one at the park in Barcalona the next day, which was maybe just as good if not better.  It was a free gig and we played a stripped back set.  And there were rainclouds above us, and it looked like it was going to rain, and there was no cover over the stage so we couldn’t have played if it rained.  But it just held off and the park was full of people. That will be a thing we’ll never forget.  It was a great moment for the band.  And T in the Park was really good for us this year.

And then it was the record release and touring America.   Then the ABC show at the end of the year. That was a big highlight.   Just seeing that many people in the one room that wanted to see us.   I never expected those kind of things to happen for our band, so for it to happen, that’s twice now we’ve done it, I think it was a pretty overwhelming at points.  Oh aye and Hogmanay.  That was a good way to end off the year, playing with fireworks going off in the background.

So it’s been busy.  And if you are busy then things are going alright.  We are a band that works, and as a band we want to work as long as we can.  So they were the highlights, but there was loads of wee things that happened in between that were great as well.  I think just getting to release our fourth record. I never thought we’d get to four records, so that is an accomplishment in itself.

When you'd finished recording the album, how did it match up to your expectations?

James - It’s just another stage, it’s who we were in our lives, that’s what it was.  I’m enjoying playing them [the new songs] live.  It’s now a case of what do we leave out, instead of in the past we’ve not got enough songs.  Now we have to leave songs out and we want to play the full record, which shows you how much we like the record.  I think we can all look back on it and say we did a good job.

Are you now looking at how you can re-interpret the new songs for live shows?


James – We perform the songs differently and there’s different ways of doing it.  I mean you’ve got the live full band which is the main focus of what we do.  And that will be like the album in some ways, but I think it’s a little more intense, and a bit noisier than it is on records.  But that’s been the same with all of our albums to be honest.  As far as Andy, Mark and I, playing the acoustic, stripped back, three piece sets, we’ve adapted most of the songs on the record to be played like that as well.  We had a Tour EP  out last year which was only available on tour, and that’s songs from the new record, just stripped completely back.  And I think for anyone who likes the record it’s a nice side release to see how the songs started out to going to what they are after that.  And we are possibly looking to put that together in some sort of package with the record as well.  We like to show different sides to the songs, but even though we are about to do an acoustic in-store tour, the main focus at this point is the five piece full band.

How important do you feel that the support of music blogs has been to the band?

James – I think it’s been, and I’m not just saying this, it’s probably been one of the most important things for our band.  When we started out, it was blogs and things like that that helped spread the word about our music.  And through every release we’ve had we’ve constantly had that support.  We’re not a band that is on the front of magazines or in big features, and in some ways I like that.  I mean if that comes along, then that comes along and that’s great.  But the best thing about it, is that it’s the actual real genuine people who are writing about music because they give a fuck about it, that are actually writing about our band and spreading the word about our band.  And I think that’s a pretty cool thing to have that kind of support.

And it’s something that I hope people see that we appreciate and don’t take for granted, because I’d like to keep that relationship going.   If people keep liking our music, then we’d like to move forward with everyone and at the same time promote the blogs.  And if we do that then maybe someone discovers a blog through our music.  It’s a two way thing.  If we promote the blogs, you get more readers who will then can discover another new band who you are promoting.  And it’s all about getting people to listen to new music and music that’s good instead of the usual shite.  We are really appreciative that we have that support, because the main goal for us is to reach as many people as we can and without that support we wouldn’t have reached as many people as we have at this point.

And finally, what has been your favourite album of 2014?

James – I had quite a few actually.  I’m obviously a massive Mogwai fan, so Rave Tapes  was always going to be on that list.   I really liked Perfume Genius’ album, Too Bright, I found that really interesting.  Angel Olson, her record with the long song title [Burn Your Fire for No Witness], which is ironic because I can’t slag anyone for that as we have the longest going.  I liked Alvvays.   I only got into the Alvvays record at the end of the year.   It was one of those ones where people had been talking about it, and I saw their name about, but I purposely avoided it, but then I listened to it and it was great.

The Phantom Band’s record [Strange Friend] was really good.  Remember Remember’s record, Forgetting The Present, that was really good record.  There was quite a lot last year.  I saw a few people saying it wasn’t that great a year for music, but I probably listened to more than I had in a while.  I listened to The War on Drugs [Lost In the Dream] that was great record. Sharon Van Etten, I like that.

As for the rest of the band, Andy doesn’t listen to new music at all!   He’s going back the way.  He’s listening to old ‘60’s bands and stuff like that.  Which is pretty cool, it’s a good contrast.   He still does listen out for the new stuff, but he is neither here nor there about it.  Although Andy really liked the Shellac record [Dude Incredible].  He’s really likes going back the way and finding old songs.  We meet in the middle and he always recommends stuff and I usually like what he likes.  That’s how I got introduced to most of the bands I like.   I went to school with Andy and he kept on giving me albums, and that’s how we’re pals and that’s how I am where I am.  Thanks to that prick!   He’s got much better taste in music than I have, I fully admit that.

Devine listens to Britpop I’m pretty sure all the time!  If there was a quiz subject and Britpop came up, Devine would win it hands down.   But Devine does have good taste in music as well.  I actually don’t know what he listened to last year.  Think we were too busy having our headphones on and not talking to each other!

Johnny,who plays bass, he’s into some of the same stuff as I’m into it.  But then I can hear him in the van and it just sounds like it’s pure death metal that’s just coming through his headphones.  He’s one of these guys who looks so chilled out, but it’s like ‘drrrrrrrrrrr’ double kicks going in his head, and he’s just staring out the window.  And Brendan, who plays keys, he’s kind of the same as me.  He and I talk about new releases more than probably anyone in the band.


BAMS Award 2014 - And the winner is...


The Scottish Blogs and Music Site Awards return for another year with the polls closed and all the votes counted.  Voted for by 37 writers from 26 different blogs and music sites, there were an incredible 192 different albums nominated, with each BAM asked to nominate their favourite ten albums; 20 points assigned to the number 1 choice and downwards in a descending nature until only 2 points are assigned to the number 10 choice.  There can, however, only be one winner. 

The Twilight Sad’s fourth album, Nobody Wants to Be Here and Nobody Wants to Leave  has emerged as the winner of the sixth annual poll pipping Rave Tapes  by Scottish indie veterans Mogwai in a straight head to head shoot-out between the top two albums.  The Sad's cause was helped by the fact that 16 BAMS selected  Nobody Wants To Be Here and Nobody Wants to Leave  in their top 10.  Inaugural winners The Phantom Band again had a strong showing with third LP Strange Friend  finishing in third spot ahead of the fast closing Withered Hand, whose New Gods  squeezed into fourth ahead of the self-titled debut from Honeyblood in fifth.  Scottish acts filled the BAMS’ top 7 slots; Young Father's Dead  in 6th spot and Jonnie Common Trapped in Amber  at number 7; with St Vincent the top international act in eighth place ahead of Caribou in 9th.  The Amazing Snakeheads filled the top ten in 10th position.  Here's the full BAMS Top 30 list:

1. The Twilight Sad - Nobody Wants To Be Here And Nobody Wants To Leave  - 239 points
2. Mogwai - Rave Tapes  - 222 points
3. The Phantom Band - Strange Friend   - 166 points
4. Withered Hand - New Gods  - 157 points
5. Honeyblood - Honeyblood   - 150 points
6. Young Fathers - DEAD  - 140 points
7. Jonnie Common - Trapped in Amber  - 132 points
8. St. Vincent - St Vincent  - 104 points
9. Caribou - Our Love  - 102 points
10. The Amazing Snakeheads - Amphetamine Ballads  -  94 points
11. The War on Drugs - Lost in the Dream  - 90 points
12. King Creosote - From Scotland with Love  - 87 points
13. Bastard Mountain - Farewell, Bastard Mountain  - 83 points
14. We Were Promised Jetpacks - Unravelling  - 78 points
15. Fatherson - I Am An Island  - 75 points
16. PAWS - Youth Culture Forever - 70 points
17. Randolph's Leap - Clumsy Knot  - 64 points
18. Stanley Odd - A Thing Brand New  - 60 points
19. Call To Mind - The Winter Is White  - 59 points
20. Swans - To Be Kind  - 48 points
21. Run The Jewels - Run The Jewels 2  - 46 points
22. Machines In Heaven - bordersbreakdown  - 44 points
23. Ought - More Than Any Other Day  - 43 points
24. The Last Battle - Lay Your Burden Down  - 42 points
25. Sun Kil Moon - Benji  - 40 points
26. Aphex Twin - Syro  - 37 points
=27. Beerjacket - Darling Darkness  - 36 points
=27. Martha - Courting Strong  - 36 points
29. Taylor Swift - 1989  - 35 points
30. Warpaint - Warpaint  - 32 points



The Twilight Sad frontman, James Graham reflected on the band’s success, when I caught up with him earlier last week at Mono in Glasgow.

Congratulations, Nobody Wants To Be Here, Nobody Wants To Leave  is this years' winner of the Scottish BAMS Award!  How does it feel?

James - "Really good. I think I found out last week, and I told my Dad right away.  He was like, "well done son!'"

"I've said a few times that last year was a big year for us, and to have released the record that we've released and to have got the reception that it’s got has been a massive thing for us."

"I don’t want to be melodramatic and say it’s saved the band, but it kind of has in a way.  When you release something you don’t really know [how it will be received].  You can like it as much as you want, but ultimately in the long run, people have got to like it to have any sort of success or be able to make another one.  So to be voted number one for the BAMS is pretty mental for a miserable bunch of guys from Kilsyth.  It’s great though.  We really appreciate it, and things like this don’t happen to us all the time, so it’s really cool."

Previous winners of course include The National, The Phantom Band, Bill Wells and Aidan Moffat, and last year's winner CHVRCHES.  Good company to be amongst.

James - "Aye I’m a fan of every single one of those bands and the records that won.  Bill and Aidan's record [Everything’s Getting Older] is one of my favourite albums of all time."

"It's great though, those bands are bands we aspire to be like.  And to be in that company is phenomenal.   To be in the position where we are mentioned in the same breath as those artists; 16-year old James would have told you to fuck off.   So aye it’s nice.  It’s been a good year for once.  Don’t worry we’re not going to write a happy album after it!"

When you'd finished recording the album, how did it match up to your expectations?

James - "It's just another stage, it's who we were in our lives, that’s what it was.   I'm enjoying playing them [the new songs] live.  It's now a case of what do we leave out, instead of in the past we’ve not got enough songs.  Now we have to leave songs out and we want to play the full record, which shows you how much we like the record.  I think we can all look back on it and say we did a good job."

How important do you feel that the support of music blogs has been to the band?


James - "I think it's been, and I’m not just saying this, it's probably been one of the most important things for our band.  When we started out, it was blogs and things like that that helped spread the word about our music.  And through every release we've had we’ve constantly had that support.  We're not a band that is on the front of magazines or in big features, and in some ways I like that.  I mean if that comes along, then that comes along and that’s great.  But the best thing about it, is that it's the actual real genuine people who are writing about music because they give a fuck about it, that are actually writing about our band and spreading the word about our band.   And I think that’s a pretty cool thing to have that kind of support."

And finally, what has been your favourite album of 2014?

James - "I had quite a few actually.  I'm obviously a massive Mogwai fan, so Rave Tapes  was always going to be on that list.  I really liked Perfume Genius' album, Too Bright,  I found that really interesting.  Angel Olson, her record with the long song title [Burn Your Fire for No Witness], which is ironic because I can’t slag anyone for that as we have the longest going.  I liked Alvvays.  I only got into the Alvvays record at the end of the year.   It was one of those ones where people had been talking about it, and I saw their name about, but I purposely avoided it, but then I listened to it and it was great."

"The Phantom Band's record [Strange Friend] was really good.   Remember Remember's record, Forgetting The Present,  that was really good record.   I listened to The War on Drugs [Lost In the Dream] that was great record.  Sharon Van Etten, I like that."

"There was quite a lot last year.  I saw a few people saying it wasn’t that great a year for music, but I probably listened to more than I had in a while."

- For the full interview with James, check out our post here.


So congratulations to The Twilight Sad for winning this year's Scottish BAMS Award.  As always the BAMS Award captures the pulse of music in Scotland during the previous year, and I'm sure you can count on the forthcoming SAY Award long list nominations to include many of the albums listed above.  Most importantly though, the BAMS Award is about promoting and showcasing the music that bloggers and music writers have been loving, so please go and listen to; and buy; as many of the above albums as you can.  They are all fantastic in their own way.  If you are interested in such things you can see how Scottish Fiction voted by checking out our Top 20 Scottish Albums of 2014.

BAMS facts in 2014:

37 writers voted for 192 albums (3 less voters than 2013 but 28 extra albums!)
53 albums received more than 1 vote (66 in 2013).
27 different albums received first preference votes (28 in 2013)
Ten albums received multiple first preference votes in 2014 (compared to 5 in 2013).
The bands who received more than 1 first preference vote were: The Twilight Sad, Withered Hand (3), The Phantom Band, Caribou, The Amazing Snakeheads, Bastard Mountain, Randolph’s Leap, Sun Kil Moon (2)
The highest placed album without a first preference vote was #7 - Jonnie Common – Trapped In Amber.
11 albums with first preference votes didn’t receive any other votes (8 in 2013) although Sun Kil Moon received only 2 votes – both first preferences!

Previous BAMS winners:

2009 - The Phantom Band - The Wants
2010 - The National - High Violet
2011 - Bill Wells & Aidan Moffat - Everything's Getting Older
2012 - Meursault - Something for the Weakened
2013 – CHVRCHES - The Bones Of What You Believe

The 2014 BAMS were:

Honorary Head BAM - Lloyd (Peenko)

Chief BAMS - Neil (Scottish Fiction), Mike (Manic Pop Thrills), Jamie (Netsounds Unsigned), Stuart (Is This Music?), and Al (Houdi)

Contributing BAMS - Bluesbunny, Jim Gellatly, Almost Predictable. Almost, Vic Galloway, Detour Scotland, The Spill, The Steinberg Principle, Haiver, For Malcontents, Last Year’s Girl, Tenement TV, Dear Scotland, Marion Scott, 17 Seconds, Alan Morrison (The Herald), Through The Wire, Post Nothing, Podcart, Everything Flows, Avalanche, Elba Sessions, La Terrasse, Edinburgh Man, The Skinny, Alive & Amplified, Song, By Toad, The Pop Cop

EP Review - Tuff Love - Dross


Tuff Love's debut EP Junk,  released back in May last year, was a riotous blast of guitar pop that was simply fantastic.  Now, rather splendidly, the band have followed that up with a new EP which goes one step further.  Dross  is released via Lost Map Records on 9th February and the title is happily no pointer at all to how the EP sounds.

Kicking off with Slammer,  as good a guitar pop song as I’ve heard in years, which mixes wonderful 'butter-wouldn't-melt' harmonies with guitars lines that remain tense and almost threatening during the verses before exploding into life in the chorus.  Slammer  combines the best parts of Nirvana and Pixies before signing off with a Peter Buck-esque guitar line reminiscent of R.E.M. at their Document  era peak.   It’s a tremendous track that is impossible not to fall in love with.

That's Right  follows and shows an intriguing, spikier, almost post-punk side to the band that has a more sinister edge than Slammer  but one that still retains the band's innate ear for a ridiculously catchy melody.  Sebastian  and Doberman  follow, both slices of Throwing Muses or Belly like loveliness, the former containing some beautifully ethereal harmonies that are a highlight of the EP.  Cum  rounds proceedings off, swaying along in a beautiful way, underpinned by lyrics speaking of regret and loss.

It perhaps seems unfair to previous EP Junk,  but Dross is a significant step forward for Tuff Love as it showcases the full range of their talents perfectly.  What is most impressive is the stupendously catchy opener Slammer  and if that song points the way forward for Tuff Love, there are exciting times ahead.

Tuff Love – Dross  is released on Monday 9th February via Lost Map Records on download and 10" pink vinyl available here.  Pre-orders give you automatic membership of the Tuff Love Friend Club.  The band are also hosting a release party on Friday 6th February at Nice 'N' Sleazy's, Glasgow.

That's My Jam #44 - Tuff Love - That's Right


The second track to be lifted from Tuff Love's forthcoming second EP Dross  (out on 9th February via Lost Map Records), That's Right  is a fuzzy, slightly distorted track with the beating heart of a pop melody. 

Clocking in at just under two and a half minutes the track showcases the two piece's music in a whirlwind manner, with a hugely infectious climbing bassline to boot.  The band are catching the ears of all the right people, with BBC 6Music huge fans, and this track, and parent EP, is another solid footstep in the band's career.  This is my jam and That's Ri... No I can't do it, it's too obvious. 

Scottish Fiction Podcast - 26th January 2015


Blog favourite Michael Cassidy returns to Scottish Fiction as our session guest for a record 4th time, ahead of the release of his debut album My Electric Heart  on Monday 2nd February, a sentence which gives me a great deal of delight having waited for it's release to close on two and a half years.  Chatting about the album, and the launch gigs, it's the three live tracks; all taken from the album; which are the real treat.

The show is also packed out with new music from Kapil Seshasayee, Kathryn Joseph, Monogram, and a Song, By Toad booster pack of Supermoon, Garden of Elks, Numbers Are Futile and digitalanalogue.  Plus there's a Re-Mixing It Up track from a well known artist who I've never played on the show before.

Garden of Elks - This Morning We Are Astronauts
Tuff Love - That's Right
Kapil Seshasayee - Crimes
Eastcoastdefector - The Lonliness of the Lightspeed Astronaut
Michael Cassidy - Real Love - Live in Pulse 98.4 Studio
Supermoon - Klopfgeist
Kathryn Joseph - the bird
Seafieldroad - Don't Let The Winter Freeze Your Heart
CLASSIC TRACK - Teenage Fanclub - Mellow Doubt
Sweethearts of the Prison Rodeo - Vulture People
Michael Cassidy - Everybody's Scared - Live in Pulse 98.4 Studio
Ella Fitzgerald - Ev'ry Time We Say Goodbye - As chosen by Michael Cassidy
digitalanalogue - Cafe Royal
Monogram - Anno (mute)
Turtle - Universal Ra
very very small inclusions - Winter Solstice
RE-MIXING IT UP - Paolo Nutini - Iron Sky (Hudson Mohawke Remix)
Numbers Are Futile - Vice Over Reason
Michael Cassidy - 15 Years - Live in Pulse 98.4 Studio
Civil Elegies - The Answer, The Problem
Rollor - Pax Britannica
Poor Frisco - A Tick Ahead


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E-mail - scottishfiction@mail.com


Album Review - The Phantom Band - Fears Trending


At first glance, you may be forgiven for thinking that Fears Trending,  the latest offering from The Phantom Band, is a collection of outtakes picked from the cutting room floor; rejects from the acclaimed 2014 album Strange Friend,  thrown together in a shameless attempt to separate those of you so inclined, from your hard earned cash.  And in one aspect you would be correct.  A package of songs, some of which didn’t make the 2014 album - for various reasons, if you listen to what the band have to say - but nonetheless, this is an album in itself, in the true meaning of the word, with an identity all of its own.

Much like The Fall, with The Phantom Band you never quite know what you will get, and that which you expect is least likely to be delivered.  And that is what makes them so utterly compelling.  The contrast between this and Strange Friend  is best reflected in Rick Antony’s assertion that this is their 'dark side'.  And they do dark so, so well.  

From Checkmate Savage  in 2009 to The Wants  2010, then the seemingly endless wait for last years Strange Friend,  whilst solo projects filled the space for some in the band, their fondness for keeping us in suspense and delivering the unexpected, has now become a trademark for Scotland’s most eclectic and creative ensemble.

This release on Chemikal Underground heralds yet another foray into the unknown for the band, and all the time relying always on the familiar.  A sign of a fermenting and unique creativity.  Seven tracks are offered as an album, short on numbers possibly but brimming with depth and variety.

Tender Castle  is a fine opener and an comfortable transition for those familiar with the populist dalliances of Strange Friend.  Punctuated para-diddle drum patterns lay the foundations for sci-fi score keyboards.  A song which builds, breaks and distorts beautifully as you would expect from the Phantoms, and all the time the constant rhythmic tempo punctuated by those familiar crying vocals.  And always a darkness hiding in undergrowth – “And I’ll be watching as you speak”.

Local Zero  displays more conventional in its layout and structure than we have come to expect from them, and a gentler more apologetic vocal, the offbeat musical hook is interrupted only at times to deviate to pure melody followed by Tardis synth and oscillating bass.  Build, repeat and return to the start and go “from the left to the right and back again”

With a horseback headstrong drum rhythm, Denise Hopper  takes us to The Band’s vision of a spaghetti western set in a post-apocalyptic Dali-esque desert, where dancer tango in the searing heat of a flailing, barely audible haunting melody.  One of the strongest tracks on the album, it doesn’t bear thinking that this is a song which 'didn’t make it' onto the previous offering due any lack of quality.  This is The Phantom Band at their uncompromising best.  Oh yes.

On next track, Black Tape,  the somnambulists among you will welcome the dreamlike landscape.  So too the Poe aficionados, with the gothic horror gargoyles pulling the strings backstage to the beat of the military 'onwards' drum rhythm.  Those same gargoyles providing the offstage cries, accompanying the punctuated story.  Suitably soaked in suspense your attention doesn’t falter, but don’t look behind you

Spectrelegs  requires listeners to be ready for the weight of the metal onslaught riff pounding your chest after the beauty of the soft gentle keys lull the security from you.  It drives so hard you may have to curl your toes and grip your seat to gain purchase.  Again, the structure of build/fade/dark/light is utterly mesmerising.

Penultimate track The Kingfisher,  for me, is the masterpiece of the album.  A fine compliment indeed.  I was fortunate enough to see the live rendition of this recently at the Arches gig in Glasgow, such a powerful track which oozes Nick Cave at his Stagger Lee best.  The pounding rhythm from bass/drums/keyboards, lays a foundation which entraps and ensures that YOU WILL NOT TAKE YOURSELF AWAY FROM THIS.  And you cannot.  Even the beauty of the organ frequency, strains to take you to a kinder place but you’re hypnotised, you are with the vocals to the end.  And in the end, Quint breaks through the fade out and reminds us of the horror of the deep with his tale of those ladies of Spain.

And to end, and as gesture of kindness, we are wakened softly from the darkness with the most melodic and fitting end to this album in the form of Olden Golden.  A vista is opened to us, as the cinema curtains extend to show the feature.  A big sky, a rolling landscape of a song and familiar territory for The Phantom Band as they escort us back home, from a journey to the dark side and back.

- Bobby Motherwell

The Phantom Band - Fears Trending  is out now via Chemikal Underground and can be purchased here.

Sarah J Stanley - Scottish Fiction Session Videos


Joining me in session last week was artist and musician Sarah J Stanley.  Chatting about her music, including most recent album The Earth Is Flat,  Sarah also played three wonderful tracks live in the Pulse 98.4 studio. 

Below are videos for the tracks Farmer,  Secretly Not,  and I Promise Mum  which were recorded at Pulse 98.4 as part of Sarah J Stanley's Scottish Fiction Session.  To hear the full show, including interview, check out the Scottish Fiction Podcast for 19th January 2015.






And check out this EXCLUSIVE video of Stubborn and Cruel  recorded for the Scottish Fiction blog.