I Hear a New World (May, 2008)
Inspired by the cosmic concept album of the same name by pioneering producer Joe Meek, this brand new monthly column will highlight a selection of unique and essential tracks by groundbreaking artists from Scotland and further afield, all of which can be heard on the accompanying podcast.
Errors – Salut! France
Errors’ seemingly effortless, organic blend of live instruments and laptops makes for a stupendously good live show. An updated version of Salut! France is due to feature on their long-awaited debut album (almost finished at time of going to press), but in the meantime this single version, released on Mogwai's Rock Action label last year, has lost none of its uplifting, blistering modernity.
Withered Hand – Religious Songs
Not many religious songs contain the line “I beat myself off when I sleep on your futon” but the title track from Withered Hand’s new EP (released on new label Bear Scotland) combines themes of faith, doubt, sex and inexplicably uncomfortable furniture without blinking an eye. A key member of the delightful but short-lived anti-folk outfit The Love Gestures, he’s also recently played at the Fence Collective’s Homegame festival in Anstruther and at a special Scottish Hobo Society event as part of the (sob) last ever Triptych.
Cheer – Every Forest Has Its Shadow
Alec Cheer is a Glasgow-based artist, animator and experimental film-maker, and he brings this same accomplished, avant-garde sensibility to his gorgeous ambient compositions, available from Benbecula Records. The evocative title suits this hypnotic track perfectly, its subtly spliced sounds like shafts of sunlight illuminating dense treetops.
Paul Hawkins - I Like it When You Call Me Doctor
A highly disturbing tale of an underachiever with a burning need for the kind of approval only proven medical authority can bring. From his album The Misdiagnosis of Paul Hawkins, and also available on the first compilation CD from Antifolk UK, it really begins to get weird when the protagonist admits, “I got myself a uniform and hung around in hospitals looking round for patients who looked lost.”