Friday, 23 December 2011

Scottish Fiction - Best Of 2011 - Scottish Albums: 20-11

The more observant amongst you may have noticed that I've been rather late in revealing part two of my favourite albums of 2011. Part one (which was my top 30 albums by International artists) was nearly two weeks ago! (read it here)

However I've been busy inbetween putting out the Scottish Fiction Shelter Christmas EP, two Scottish Fiction shows on Pulse 98.4 FM, recording a end of year special which you can here on Pulse 98.4 FM on Boxing Day at 9pm AND rocking out to We Were Promised Jetpacks at ABC and Mogwai at the Barrowlands.

So without further ado here is Scottish Fiction's Best Of 2011 Scottish Albums numbers 20 to 11:

20. Take A Worm For A Walk Week - T.A.W.F.A.W.W

Third album from the experimental Glaswegians who do not know the meaning of the word quiet. Released on 4th July (a fitting nod to the American metal influences) on It's A Stiff! Records, this album will not be to everyone's taste, but that's part of what makes it so good, it fully commits to the alt metal vibe that thrashes from the word go.

(Dowload here, Physical CD here)

19. Black International - In Debt

I first discovered Black International's music earlier this year when the band agreed to do a Q&A session for the blog and subsequently contribute a track to one of our free EP's. Their album 'In Debt' was released on 11th March on their own label Return Of Order. Its an album choka block with influences, different sounds and bursting with energy.

(Buy the album, download and CD, here)

18. Martin John Henry - The Other Half Of Everything

Released on Gargleblast Records on 10th October, ex De Rosa man Martin John Henry has produced an album that is a open and beautiful as it's coverart. It's an intriguing and compelling listen, which is full of so much detail that multiple listens, because you'll want to listen again, pick up on little gems obscured from first glance. Personal highlight is the below 'Ribbon On A Bough'.

(Buy the album, download and CD, here)

17. Evil Hand - Huldra

Contained on this album of 16 tracks, part new material, part reworking of older tracks, are some of the finest songs released by a Scottish artist this year. The album staggers from minimal acoustic hummings, to ambient drones, and all the while takes the listener for a most enjoyable journey through the brain of creator Derek Bates. 'Returned In Time' is a gem of a song. Have a listen below.

(Download for FREE here)

16. IndianRedLopez - Empty Your Lungs And Breathe

Hailing from the granite city (Aberdeen for those not in the know), IndianRedLopez released on of the finest debuts this year. Released on 6th June on A Badge Of Friendship, 'Empty Your Lungs And Breathe' is an album with the legs to propel IndianRedLopez to bigger things that their sound craves. Never straying too far of the mainstream rock path on songs such as 'Ropes' and 'My Eyes' which would be snug at home on any commerical radio stadio, there is also plenty of dabbles into electro and alternative rock to keep everyone interested.

(Buy the CD here)

15. The John Knox Sex Club - Raise Ravens

I think it's pretty safe to say that The John Knox Sex Club are unlike any other band on this list. Their second album, self released on 29th August is an absolutely fucking (note this is the only profanity in this post) triumph of an album. It shouldn't really be this good, it's heavily folk influenced, it's opener is 13 minutes long, and it's pretty depressing to listen to, but my oh my does it hit home. The band are mighty fine live, and on this record they've captured that as best as they could.

(Buy the album, download or CD, here)

14. Adam Stafford - Build A Harbour Immediately

I think a lot of people have either missed this off their list completely or had it a lot higher. And I think that's because Build A Harbour Immediately, released on Wise Blood Industries on 22nd August is either loved or not. So strangely I'm in the middle. Well not really the middle, because I think it's an excellent record, but not quite top ten material. But let me rescue myself by saying that this is one of the most creative records of the year. Stafford quite often pulls the rug from beneath your ears halfway through a track, which generally results in a broad smile across the face.

(Download the album here)

13. King Post Kitsch - The Party's Over

Released on Song, By Toad Records on 13th June, I've been listening to Don't You Touch My Fucking Honeytone for a good portion of the last few weeks, and it really reinforced in my just how good the whole King Post Kitsch album really was. Whilst '...Honeytone' is a standout brawling highlight, the rest of the album is of equal quality. The slight roughness of the sound helps add a certain underdog feel, and makes you want to spread the word about this album even more.

(Buy the album here)

King Post Kitsch - Walking on Eggshells by Song, by Toad

12. Beerjacket - The White Feather Trail

Peter Kelly, a.k.a. Beerjacket is Glasgow's premier singer/songwriter. Up until the release of The White Feather Trail on 3rd October this year, Beerjacket's releases were self recorded and produced, which it should be said doesn't take away from the quality of the music at all. TWFT is that little bit cleaner, and the album soars for it. Heart firmly on sleeve, TWFT is full of positive uplifting honest stories that make your day that little bit better.

(Buy the album, download or CD, here)

11. Song Of Return - Limits

Born from the ashes of Union Of Knives. Add in Louis Abbot and self released 'Limits' (6th June) is the result. And what a result. At times you can feel the angst in some of the songs (UoK where unceremoniously dropped prior to their album being released). Song Of Return create big songs. Atmospheric, slightly dark at times, and climxing in almost anthemic sing along moments. 'Trajectory', below, was the sound track to the TITP 2011 website. Nice.

(Buy the album, download and CD, here)

Stay tuned for 10 - 1!

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