See Unsigned Bands feature on page 13.
A recent Scottish success story. Blur’s chirpier labelmates started in Glasgow about five years ago and built up a name for themselves as a live band with bags of tunes, character and bad dress sense before signing to the corporate monster and tasting modest success soon after. There’s been continual touring, festival playing, forays abroad, Top Of The Pops appearances and persistent bad dress sense ever since. Their new single 'Prepare To Land’ should see them further up the ladder to megasuccess.
Celebrating eight years of club promotion, Streetrave are the Scottish answer to the superclub phenomenon. Headed by Ricki Magowan, the crew started Eurodance nights at the Ayr Pavilion and now have three regular nights in Edinburgh and Glasgow, trading as Colours and Spectrum. Resident DJs are Jon Mancini, lain ’Boney’ Clark, Crosby and Darren Mackie. A mix CD is out late Oct.
Gigs are still to be confirmed, but Palm Tree, the next album from this tunesome band early in 98, is to be given 'a Bandwagonesque-type push', according to sources close to the band. They’ve recorded a French version of the song ’Superstar' from 78 Carat, and are toying with putting the original out as a Christmas single on account of its sleigh bells.
Ethereal, textured soundscapes, atmospheric, gentle harmonies, 4AD, drifting melodies, sometimes sunny pop . . . The List has been banging on about Edinburgh five-piece Tantrum for a year and a half. Dozens of record companies have sniffed about, with MCA, Mother and Mushroom leading the pack. Tantrum won a slot at this Festival’s Flux event for new music and as part of the prize are releasing 500 CD singles of the track 'Tantrum Egg’. It’s the puppy's privates.
It took them a fair few years to achieve it but the Fannies made their debut TOTP performance this year With 'Ain’t That Enough' from Songs From Northern Britain — another slice of Janeg Scot-pop, the like of which the Bellshill boys have been consistently churning out since their Virginal release Catholic Education in 1990. They kick off their forthcoming UK tour at Barrowland on Sun 28 Sep — one not to be missed.
Earlier this year, back from the self-imposed exile of country-rock hell, Texas chainsawed their way into the Top Ten album charts With White On Blonde, a commercially blockbusting mix of soul and coffee- table hip hop. The album has rarely been out of the Top Ten since and every single from it has gone Top Ten. Possibly the biggest resurrection since old lC rolled away that chookie
The lunatic fringe of the Glasgow scene, Toaster sound like everybody and nobody. They’ve got funky rhythms, qUirky keyboards and high-pitched vocal exchanges. Singer Sinclair leads the assault on your sanity With his funky chicken dancmg, while the rest of the band back him up in grand style. So far, Toaster have been a band you must see live and we’ll still have to wait until the new year before we hear if they can capture their freneticism on record. Till then, we salute you mad bastards.
Travis 1997’s biggest next big thing are a cross between Teenage Fanclub, Radiohead and Slade and
supported those mad Mancs Oasis on their UK tour. Not a bad platform for the Glasgow four-piece whose stomping Good Feeling stunned many a critic into heralding it as the debut album release to end them all.
Scotland can’t offer much better in the way of noisy upstarts than Urusei Yatsura. Rising out of the 13th Note lo-fi scene, Urusei Yatsura have risen head and shoulders above most of their contemporaries with a string of excellent singles like ’Siamese', ’Plastic Ashtray' and ‘Kewpies Like Watermelons' which have the off-kilter melodies of Pavement and the cut-and- thrust of Sonic Youth. Toy instruments and talking dolls have been known to feature on their records, which boast artwork influenced by Japanese Manga cartoons.
Brothers Kit and Des of Vodka first found local notoriety in the early 90s as founding members of saidflorence. After a series of record company wrangles, they went their own way and eventually started afresh in Vodka. Their percussive style — they boast two drummers but only one drum kit — has won them fans locally and they are releasing their own single/video package ’Right Or Wrong’, ’Super Mario Lanza’ — the first part of an anticipated trilogy of material.
If shouty retro rock is the next big thing, V TWin could find themselves in demand. Although they'd be the
first to admit their debt to the likes of The Stones and The Faces, it’s not all denim flares and feather cuts. A
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floating additional membership, including Chris from Belle And Sebastian on keyboards, enhances the trippier electronic elements of the sound. They also recently performed a maudlin country rock set under an alias. One-off 7in singles for a couple of labels are soon to be recorded, for release towards the end of the year.
Wet Wet Wet
The Daily Record's favourite pop stars and Clydebank FC sponsors, the Wets have been skirting around world domination since the success of ’Love Is All Around’. Their recent Parkhead show confirmed their status as the nation’s most screamable-at combo. Could be that the next year will be a sabbatical period after their exhaustive world tour. Hopefully, Marti will still have his lovely smile.
Charmingly named lads who have outgrown the veggiepunk scene from which they emerged about five years ago. Their set is a short, sharp shock with a lot happening in a short space of time, influenced by the scattershot style of The Fire Engines, Captain Beefheart and angular punk. One of the many bands in Scotland who seize every opportunity to release something. They’ve recorded for a variety of labels, but Guided Missile is now their home.
26 Sep—9 Oct 1997 THE U8T19