Saturday, 1 May 2010

Peenko vs Aye Tunes - The Aftermath

Well now, that was fun.

By 7pm, a good hour before doors were meant to open, we were sold out. You have no idea how happy this made me, and how much it reduced my levels of blind panic which had been high ever since we announced the gig in the first place.

We had what I though was a great line up, so I was delighted to know that the people that would make the gig a success of failure, the crowd we could attract, agreed with us. If you've seen my Twitter stream, looked at my Facebook or indeed read the blog (not to mention my email outbox) you'll know that I buried my natural shyness to do everything I could to drag people along - which is after all the gig promoter's job - so yeah, I'm happy it worked.

I'm really sorry to the people we had to turn away at the door, if we could have fitted you in we would have. I'm sorry also for the first group of people that were greeted with the sight of me trying to eat a burger while doing the door. The food took ages to arrive, that's my excuse.

I only got to see little bits of the bands as Lloyd and I took turns going into the cramped downstairs while the other took care of things upstairs, but I did, predictably, like what I heard. I hope everyone that was there did too. I hope you enjoyed your lollies as well.

I really can't thank Campfires In Winter, Mitchell Museum and Kid Canaveral enough for coming along and playing for us, I really, really appreciate it. Hopefully all three bands won't feel they've been screwed over by a dodgy promoter afterwards.

I have to give a huge thank you to every single person that came along, both the familiar faces and the unfamiliar ones, your support made a nervous Jim a happy man indeed. If you enjoyed yourself anywhere near as much as I did then you should have had a good night.

Is this music? have been quick off the mark with a review here, while Manic Pop Thrills have some snaps and a review too. Obviously I can't review this one, so if anyone else does then give me a shout and I'll add the links in here too.

Ooh, more pictures & reviews! Lis, not happy with actually making me blush with something she said earlier, wrote a bit for her blog so skip over to Last Year's Girl to read that. Claire took some photos which you can find on her Flickr page, and so did Grave Maurice whose photos are here.
Even more photos can be found at, with pictures of Campfires in Winter, Mitchell Museum and Kid Canaveral.
Wull Swales of Define Pop wrote a review too, which he's kindly let me post in ful. You can read that here.
Mitchell Museum seemed to enjoy themselves, which is good to know!

So, anyone up for Aye Tunes Vs Peenko: The Rematch?

Thursday, 29 April 2010

Aye Tunes Vs Peenko - The Final Plug

There's only one day to go before the gig, so you'll be relieved to hear this is the last plug before it happens.

The main reason for the plug is to warn anyone that's planning to come along that there aren't that many tickets left. We aren't sold out yet, but it isn't far off. If you don't have a ticket yet it might be an idea to give me or Peenko a shout to get us to keep one aside for you.

All the other details are the same as they have been in all the other posts about the gig.
Captain's Rest, Glasgow, Friday April 30th.

Campfires in Winter, Mitchell Museum and Kid Canaveral

First band will be on not long after 8pm if all goes to plan.

Come along!

This is the last ticket from my share, if you want it, let me know!

Wednesday, 28 April 2010

Words Per Minute

I mentioned this on Monday in the gig guide, but that's no reason not to bring it up again, particularly as organisers Anneliese Mackintosh and Kirstin Innes were kind enough to answer some questions about the event, making them the first ever victims of an Aye Tunes interview in the process.

Would you care to introduce yourself, and tell us a little about yourself?

A – Hello, I’m Anneliese, the German-born/English-raised/Scots-descended half of Words Per Minute. I’m a writer of novels, short stories, plays and short films. I’m currently working on a novel called Watch Yourself, and a short story collection called Dedicated. I get very excited about performing my work, and have done so at Glasgow events DiScOmBoBuLaTe at the Arches, Manifesto and TBC Cabaret at the Tron Theatre, OMG at Offshore, and Edinburgh events A Night In the Gutter at the National Library, Golden Hour at the Forest Café and as support act for musician David Ford at Cabaret Voltaire. At the moment I’m finishing a PhD in Creative Writing at the University of Glasgow, and so soon I’m about to get a real, real job. You may see the panic this causes me reflected in my recent (foreboding?) short stories about abusive workplaces.

K- Hello. I’m Kirstin. I write stories and newspaper articles.

A – Oops. Kirstin is also far more modest than I am, it seems.

Tell us a little about Words Per Minute?

K - There’s loads of work being made in Glasgow just now that doesn’t necessarily conform to one genre - it’s not just ‘writing’ or ‘music’ or ‘film’ or ‘theatre’. We wanted to put on an event that showcased that. We’re both writers who perform our own work (Anneliese makes animations, too), so we decided to put together a collection of people who use words in different ways and see what happens. We’re also hoping to introduce audiences to different kinds of work -- spike a literary crowd on some electronica, bring really good writers to a live music audience, screen artist films to theatre-goers. That’s the plan, anyway.

A – We’re also giving people the opportunity to try out something completely new. If, for instance, an established novelist decides he wants to try his hand at animations in an open-minded environment before unleashing it to the wider world (yes, that’s you, Ewan Morrison, at WPM1), then our event is the perfect place to do it. If artists are looking to seek out new collaborators in alternative art forms, we provide an ideal hub for that sort of thing too. In terms of what the audience will get out of it – for very little money they’ll get a snapshot into the artistic scene in Glasgow and beyond – a bit of film, literature, music, theatre and who-knows-what-else at each event, and each one will be exciting, vibrant and unique. What better way to spend your post-roast Sunday afternoon?

The first event is coming up on Sunday, who can we expect to see performing?

K - Martin O’Connor, a playwright and theatre-maker who I’ve been keeping an eye on for yeeears now is going to try out some new work. Ewan Morrison, who’s best known for his deviant and quite frankly filthy novels (Swung, Distance and Menage) has started working on a new short story collection designed for e-books, with embedded animations, and he’s going to be screening and narrating them. Then there’s fast-living rock diva/writer/hurricane Lisa Foad - I met her at a literary festival in Toronto and loved her writing. Unfortunately, we can’t afford to get her over from Canada, but thanks to the miracle of modern technology she can be there in video form.

A – Plus there’s the lovely Colin Begg, whose poems are influenced by the Scottish people and landscape, and feelings of (not) belonging. He recently described his work to me as 'some poems the head wrote about the heart, or vice versa'. He’s also written short screenplays and plays, and is currently co-editor of Gutter, a brilliant new literary magazine, going soon into its third issue. The live music act for the first event is Miaoux Miaoux, an electronica musician listed on BBC Scotland's Vic Galloway's 50 Scottish artists to watch in 2010. His new EP Blooms was launched in March, described on the Ayetunes blog as ‘positively bursting with energy’. (Jim - it's true, check here) It’s Postal Service meets Apparat meets Lali Puna and they all go for a drink with Mogwai and have a nice time. Miaoux Miaoux, aka Julian Corrie, is also going to be WPM’s resident DJ, playing a one-hour set after every event, whilst people chat, mingle and relax.

K - Anneliese and I are also going to do five minute sets of our own stuff, just for the first night. We’re not going to get into the habit of it, though: we’re running this night to celebrate what’s happening in Glasgow just now, not to promote our own work. Too much.

Why did you choose Creation Studios as the venue?

K - I was working on a project in the Trongate and Merchant City, and Roddy (Creation Studios head honcho) approached us looking to be included in that. After going up for a meeting I was really taken by the café/performance space - it’s got a great atmosphere about it, so when Roddy mentioned he was looking for spoken word events, it seemed like a pretty good fit with the night Anneliese and I had been dreaming up for the past few months. It’s a lovely, open space, the staff are ace and interested in everything, and as somewhere that already promotes emergent visual artists and musicians, it felt like the right place to unleash our cross-genre vision on the world!

Words Per Minute is a nonprofit event, do you have any plans for what to do with any money raised?

A – The £2 ticket money will go straight back into promoting the events – we need to buy posters each month in order to give the performers the best possible chance of publicity, but we will also be collecting money for Cancer Research UK on the night. My dad was diagnosed with terminal cancer two years ago and I think it’s really important to keep providing money for the much needed equipment and resources for cancer care. Making art is about making a difference, both onstage and off.

Going forward what plans do you have for Words Per Minute, and for yourselves?

K - We’re already planning lineups for WPM2 and 3. We’ve just confirmed Adam Stafford for next month: as I’m sure Ayetunes readers already know, he creates these amazing, slow-building soundscapes with just a loop pedal and his voice, then sings wild-man blues over the top. Sophie Cooke is also performing - she’s a well-established novelist and short story writer, but she’s also a glittering, diamond-hard performer.

A - We’ve also got newcomer Craig Lamont confirmed for WPM2. I saw him perform at the Mitchell Library during the Aye Write festival as part of the University of Strathclyde Creative Showcase, and was blown away by his work. We’ve also had all sorts of interesting submissions for future events - keep them coming, folks!

K - We’ve got a fantasy wishlist of people we want, and we’re already talking to some of them. Everyone from beatboxers and short filmmakers to Booker-nominated novelists and former members of seminal Falkirk-based bands now pursuing their own spoken-word projects. We’d also like to open things up to visual artists a bit more - we’re not sure exactly how, yet, but we’ll take any suggestions going.

A - As for my own plans, I’m hoping to punt my novel around by the end of the year, and I’m in the process of getting a short film made with a production company in London. I’ve also got some music collaborations on the horizon.

K - I’m currently writing a novel and a play, and collaborating with US-based composer Tony Marasco, who’s setting a couple of stories I’ve written to music (I think I’m then going to record myself reading over the top - we’re doing the whole thing over the internet, so haven’t quite worked out the logistics of that bit yet).

A – We’ll probably try and fit in a nice long rest at some point, but not just yet.

Thanks a million to Anneliese and Kirstin for taking time to answer my questions, from the sound of it that long rest will be well deserved. Now, get along there on Sunday!

Words Per Minute takes place on Sunday May 2nd 2010, from 4-6pm, plus a Miaoux Miaoux DJ set from 6-7pm at Creation Studios, 16 Trongate, Glasgow. Tickets: £2 on the door.
For more information on Words Per Minute visit their website,, and say hello on Facebook or Twitter.

Tuesday, 27 April 2010

Fear The Fives - EP Review

Well now, this is just brilliant.
Imagine if you will a bar on the docks of some Eastern European country, now imagine Nick Cave finding himself in there, signing some sea shanties and drinking songs backed by a band of gypsies. That's pretty much the image conjured up in my head by this EP.
Quite frankly, it's a mental image that's both good enough and more than unique enough to get pass marks for the EP from me.

Happily the songs are also excellent. Opener Balkan Ekspres, which mixes piano led swagger with more tender moments and soaring choruses, before it all goes a bit beautifully mental towards the end.
Devil's Tongue sounds a bit like what The Doors' Alabama Song might be like if The Doors weren't a bit rubbish, and maybe Jarvis Cocker stepped in on vocals. Packed with passion an atmosphere it's a raucous affair that does nothing to dispel the thought of beer tankards being waved in the air.
Finally No Hurry Home is a more downbeat affair, one to round off the evening of drinking, dancing and singing with a mournful torch song, tempered with optimism.

It would be hyperbolic to say the least if I said that I'd never heard anything quite like Fear The Fives, but they certainly sound fresh and different, and they are a very welcome change from yet another indie schmindie band.

I know I have a bit of a reputation for liking everything, but trust me on this one one, this is pretty much an outstanding debut that I'd implore you all to seek out.

Fear The Fives: MySpace - Facebook

Fear The Fives release their self-titled debut EP on iTunes, Amazon and other digital media on Monday 3rd May 2010. Catch Fear The Fives live playing an acoustic set at Tchai Ovna on 4th May, and at an EP launch gig on 6th May at Bar Bloc.
Stream Fear The Fives - Devil's Tongue

Monday, 26 April 2010

This Week's Gigs

Welcome to another exciting round up of the gigs happening this week, or as I like to think of it, the weekly attempt to steal all my money and ruin my liver as I realise just how much is on.
If any bands are playing Glasgow on Friday then I'm sorry, but this week you aren't getting a mention.

The Paraffins, Sugar Crisis and Magic Box Mistress can be found at Pivo Pivo, and entry is only £1.

Shambles Miller has another gig? Why yes, he does. He's quite the hard worker. Sloans Ballroom, 8pm, £4.

Always Read The Label are playing at Box. It's free.
Also on Wednesday you can catch Kochka at The Buff Club in Glasgow.

Spy Movie have a launch gig for their new single at Stereo. Also on the bill are Julia and the Doogans, The Hardy Boys and Always Me, Me, Me.
Also on Thursday over at The Captain's Rest is what would have been my gig of the week, were it not for what's happening there on Friday. Eat Dr Ape, Palace Ballet, Mickey 9's and Vendor Defender. I predict dancing.

If you are in Edinburgh then you could do a lot worse than hop along to The Roxy Room, where eagleowl are having a launch gig for their new EP, followed by an after party at Sneaky Pete's. The EP is very good too, as you'd expect from Eagleowl.
For those of you in Glasgow, or going to Glasgow on Friday night, then I'm duty bound to ask you to come to The Captain's Rest. If you have to ask why then you haven't been paying attention. Friday sees the very first Peenko Vs Aye Tunes gig, and even if I wasn't putting it on I'd be advising you to go anyway. If you didn't know already, on the bill are Campfires in Winter, Mitchell Museum and Kid Canaveral. It all kicks off at 8pm, and it's £5 on the door. If you hurry £4 are still available. The Alarm at The ABC is sold out, so come to us instead.
Afterwards join some of us in heading along to The Flying Duck for Pinup Nights. DJing on the night are Ed from 17 Seconds, Jason from The Pop Cop, Nick from Radar, some of the Glasgow PodcART team, and Lloyd, the Peenko half of Aye Tunes Vs Peenko. It costs a fiver, but rumour has it that you can get £1 off with a ticket for our gig.
Oh alright, I wil mention one other Glasgow gig happening on Friday. It's at The Liquid Ship, which is practically next door to The Captain;s Rest, so you could potentially get to it and ours. Playing there are Julia and the Doogans, Stevie & the Moon and Lovers Turn To Monsters. Kyle Wood, AKA Lovers Turned To Monsters, designed the Peenko Vs Aye Tunes poster for us, so it's only fair I give his gig a mention.

Glasgow's chance to get a bit of eagleowl action, as they have another EP launch, this time at The Flying Duck.
Edinburgh folk have Machar Granite at The Wee Red Bar, along with the Lorraine McCauley Band and Tam's Railway.
Back in Glasgow, Ace City Racers are having what they call a May Day Tea Party. It takes places at The Victoria Bar at The Clutha, doors are at 8pm, and it'll cost you £2.

Not quite a gig, but looking pretty good, is WPM1. This is the first ever Words Per Minute event, which promises to mix spoken word, live music, film and performance. The event takes place in Creation Studios in Glasgow at 4pm on Sunday, and features animations of a literary bent from Ewan Morrison, poetry from Colin Begg, readings from Anneliese MacKintosh and Kirstin Innes. and both a live performance and a DJ set from Miaoux Miaoux. I'm a little worried that when I turn up at this Julian of Miaoux Miaoux will think I'm stalking him.
You can find more information on Words Per Minute here.

For those waiting on it, it doesn't look like there'll be a "This Week's Records" post this week, since as far as I can see there's only one new release, Admiral Fallow's debut album.