Monday, February 28, 2005


Scottish Top 50 - Primal City Fanclub

Xtreme noise from Xtrmntr by Bobby Gillespie's Primal Scream to start with, then a real treat for you with this unique melding of everyone's favourite tartan tat boys with Alice Cooper impersonator, Marliyn Manson. Robbie Lesiuk is the genius behind this mix. Teenage Fanclub never fail to satisfy, and this track is a near perfect 3 minute chunk of pop.

9. Primal Scream - Accelerator
8. Bay City Rollers meet Marilyn Manson - Shang A Lang
7. Teenage Fanclub - What You Do To Me

Friday, February 25, 2005


Scottish Top 50 - Proclaim Texas Historical

Colin MacIntyre, or Mull Historical Society as he prefers to be called is another master pop craftsman. I stumbled across their album Loss for £3.99 at HMV once - the best bargain ever. I also recall seeing them at T in the Park where a devoted Oriental fan in front of me kept thrusting her blow up sheep high in the air. Crikey. Texas I've never been that much of a fan of. Still, it's all good clean wholesome fun. And then, tantaraaan,we're into the top ten with the magnificent Proclaimers who I last saw giving a free show at the Ocean Terminal in Leith. Top quality.
PS - In case you haven't heard, Edwyn Collins (ex Orange Juice - No.24 below) is in hospital after suffering a brain haemorrhage - Get Well Soon, Edwyn.

12. Mull Historical Society - Watching Xanadu
11. Texas - I Don't Want a Lover
10. The Proclaimers - Born Innocent

Thursday, February 24, 2005


Scottish Top 50 - Big Snow Franz

And at number 15, the darlings of the moment, Franz Ferdinand, with their snowballing award grabbing Gang of Four/Pere Ubu/XTC sound. Snow Patrol, of course, are famously Irish but also Scottish on account of them living here. Sheesh. It's like calling Jakey Rowling Scottish. Onyhoots, it's an excuse to play their version of Teenage Kicks which, of course, they nicked from me. I did a version not a hundred miles removed from this at a John Peel tribute gig last year. That was fun. I also did The Ramones' Everytime I Eat Vegeatables and Half Man Half Biscuit's Vatican Broadside. Just so's you know, like. And now my boring old fart Big Country reminisence - I remember Stuart Adamson when he was in the Skids telling me to cheer up at the Station Hotel in Kirkcaldy where there used to be a regular Sunday punk night. It almost makes me cry to remember that. That's it, fact fans.

15. Franz Ferdinand - Take Me Out
14. Snow Patrol - Teenage Kicks
13. Big Country - In a Big Country

Wednesday, February 23, 2005


Scottish Top 50 - Blue Bis Fish

Fish equals pish in my language. But, in the interests of balance, here is a Marillion track anyway. Deacon Blue were harmless enough, I suppose, and that lassie does have lovely eyes. As for Bis, it is often stated they were the first unsigned band to appear on Top of the Pops. Apparently New Order and the Timelords have stronger claims to this. There's a fascinating piece of tat for you. Onywise, I am reliably informed that Theme from Tokyo was their finest moment. If only I had it. Not to worry - many thanks to Spoilt Victorian Child for sending this marvellous electronic version of the Joy Division classic.

18. Fish - Market Square Heroes (Marillion)
17. Deacon Blue - Real Gone Kid
16. Bis - Love Will Tear Us Apart

Tuesday, February 22, 2005


Scottish Top 50 - Jesus Mog Run

A liddle bidda traditional Scottish Rock for you with Runrig. A tad too bland for my liking, although I'm sure I saw them at some Edinburgh Hogmanay do thingie years back. Don't remember much of it. Mogwai really do stand apart and it's a crying shame they only got about 30 seconds on TV the other night on the Tsunami benefit highlights show. Initially considered by some to be unlistenable due to excess guitar feedback, the superb Jesus and Mary Chain still sound as good today as they did, oh, what is it, about fifty years ago now...

21. Runrig - Loch Lomond
20. Mogwai - Hunted by a Freak
19. Jesus and Mary Chain - Some Candy Talking

Monday, February 21, 2005


Scottish Top 50 - Trash Amitri Juice

After the splendid showcase of Scottish talent at the Tsunami benefit gig at the weekend, here's 2 more acts who weren't there, and one who were (Trash Can Sinatras). Another sublime pop craftsman, Edwyn Collins, is here featured in good ol' jangly Orange Juice. Simply thrilling, indeed. Deadpan Del Amitri drolely pick through the emptiness of being, in Nothing Ever Happens - what a hoot! Then the Trash Cans come across all atmospheric like with this lush track from their latest album. Not a bad mix at all, I'm sure you'd agree.

24. Orange Juice - Simply Thrilled Honey
23. Del Amitri - Nothing Ever Happens
22. Trash Can Sinatras - Weightlifting

Friday, February 18, 2005


Scottish Top 50 - Biffy Beta Nazareth

Biffy Clyro are one of the quiet bits/loud bits new breed. They do good shouting as I can vouch for, having seen them at T in the Park a few years ago. Beta Band are a law unto themselves - unclassifiable but a joy: "We might just break, can you hear us trying?" Meanwhile, back in early 70s Dunfermline, Nazareth were the biggest rock band in Scotland for a while there. They scored high in the charts with My White Bicycle and Love Hurts. I've only got a wee clip of them here. Anyone got any Naz mp3s?

27. Biffy Clyro - Darkened Sky
26. Beta Band - Human Being
25. Nazareth - Teenage Nervous Breakdown (clip)

Thursday, February 17, 2005


Scottish Top 50 - Reader Camera Images

Ex Fairground Attraction pop warbler turned worthy traditionalist, Eddi Reader, here not covering the Small Faces classic but, er, something else, with flutes and boudrans a go go. Roddy Frame of Aztec Camera sure knew how to sculpt a tune - so much of his stuff is dripping with melody and pop knowingness. Oblivious is a masterclass in how to structure a pop classic. And the fantastic Dead Pop Stars to finish. I used to love Altered Images's first LP - sort of Siouxsie and the Banshees-esque - haven't heard it for yonks.

30. Eddi Reader - All or Nothing
29. Aztec Camera - Oblivious
28. Altered Images - Dead Pop Stars

Wednesday, February 16, 2005


Scottish Top 50 - Goodbye Delgado Engines

This is a sumptious number from the consistently fabtastic Delgados - a criminally neglected act, often championed by John Peel but not enough other folks. Then we have the Fire Engines, who I actually supported in one of my previous incarnations in a band called The Pedestrians at the Cullen Clubrooms in Glenrothes back in the death of the seventies/dawn of the eighties. Candy Skin still sounds great today. I saw the Fire Engines supporting the Magic Band in Edinburgh last year. Twas a quick and quirky 20 minute set. Criminally, lead Fire Engine, Davie Henderson's Nectarine No. 9 don't even get a mention in this top 50. Will remedy this once the countdown's finished. Still not found any Goodbye Mr Mackenzie mp3s. Anyone? The Rattler would be good.

33. Delgados - Come Undone
32. Fire Engines - Candy Skin
31. Goodbye Mr Mackenzie (no mp3)

Tuesday, February 15, 2005


Scottish Top 50 - Associate vaseline strap

I first saw The Associates at the Rothes Arms in Glenrothes way back and Billy Mackenzie's voice remains the most impressive sound I've ever heard coming from a human mouth. Simply stunning. The Vaselines I never saw live, but this track, complete with squeaky toy, is a belter. And, of course, you can never go wrong with Falkirk's finest, Arab Strap. Sometimes, the sheer range of Scottish pop knocks me out. Three quality groups, completely different in style and all placed in the mid 30s in this particular listing.

36. Associates - Party Fears Two
35. Vaselines- Molly's Lips
34. Arab Strap- Pro (Your) Life

Monday, February 14, 2005


Scottish Top 50 - Heavy, light and middleweights.

I know nothing of Aerogramme other than their new heavy metal stylee was somewhat popular on the fringes until eclipsed by all the new boys- Franz etc. This particular track sounds fairly pedestrian to me. The Eurythmics I can take or leave. Usually, leave. Probably, a tad cruel to Annie in the picture there. However, for some reason, this deliberately wistful tune has ended up my favourite of theirs. And to round off, a nicely shambolic live track from The Pastels in celebration of their favourite speedway team, the Glasgow Tigers.

39. Aerogramme - The Here, The Now, Whenever
38. Eurythmics- I Saved The World Today
37. The Pastels - Speedway Star

Friday, February 11, 2005


Scottish Top 50 - A stock market for your hi-fi.

I think I'm going radge. This is uncool. Ah, the Rezillos. Top notch punk poppery and also newly reformed for all aging pogoists out there. As for the other two - Boards of Canada and Blue Nile, there's not a lot I can say about them as I've never really been a fan. Still, diversity -eh? Ye cannae whack it, as some old Caledonian comic used to say before he sold his soul to the lottery. (Are you following all this? I do hope so - there will be questions after).

42. Rezillos - Top of the Pops
41. Boards of Canada - Happy Cycling (DJ Kicks remix)
40. Blue Nile - Easter Parade

Thursday, February 10, 2005


Scottish Top 50 - Incredible Cocteau Dogs

The infectious ska and XTC influence of Dogs Die in Hot Cars is likeable enough and catchy. I bet they're dog sick of Dexy's references, mind you. The Cocteau Twins have recently reformed after a ten year absence, so here's your chance to hear again the unique breathy imaginary words of Liz Fraser set to some arty Grangemouthian atmospherics. The Incredible String Band track is an inspired folksy epic with some superb sounds swilling round in it. I have to admit this is the first time I 've heard them. Must investigate further.

45. Dogs Die in Hot Cars - I Love You Cause I Have To
44. Cocteau Twins - Lorelei
43. Incredible String Band - Koeeoaddi There

Wednesday, February 09, 2005


Scottish Top 50 - Average Spare Lulu

Weh eh eh eh eh eh eh eh eh ell. Probably the best shouty intro from an ex Bee Gee bride ever. Ahem.
AWB were a really slick and accomplished outfit. Too smooth for my liking, though. I do like a bit of rough edges. I'm not a huge disco/white soul fan. Not even ironically.
Spare Snare I like and have to agree with the sentiment expressed in this track - "Cameras are used too often these days - the process is too easy and cheap"

48. Lulu - Shout
47. Average White Band - Let's Go Round Again
46. Spare Snare - Photograph Me Properly

Tuesday, February 08, 2005


Scottish Top 50, pop pickers

I see Is This Music (a Scottish music mag, m'lud) is currently running a top 100 Scottish Albums of all time list. I know lists are ridiculous and all that, but they're guaranteed to get folk sniping and moaning, so, to add petrol to this particular fire, I have decided to run down the recent Top 50 Scottish bands of all time as voted for by readers of The List (a Scottish listings mag, m'lud). Fluff's Top 20 countdown music starts things off. I think The Shamen track sounds a tad dull now, whereas the mighty Skids still sound great to these ears. Of One Skin was always my favourite Skids track, despite Richard Jobson's pretentious lyrics.

Pick of the Pops theme
50. Shamen - Move Any Mountain
49. Skids - Of One Skin

Monday, February 07, 2005


Biscuits, Bikes and Giants

Today, a couple of tracks from two of my favourite bands sandwiching a classic theme tune from yesteryear.

Half Man Half Biscuit - Joy Division Oven Gloves
Theme tune from Kick Start
They Might Be Giants - Words Are Like

Friday, February 04, 2005


How do you work this thing?

And they're off. To start this whole thing off, here's something fairly new, a great old theme tune and a surprisingly listenable piece of old cheese. I know it's horribly unhip to admit to liking Status Quo, but I do love their early psychedelic stuff and also am not afraid to admit I also like this mainstream classic too.

White Stripes - Fell in Love With a Girl

Theme to Land of the Giants
Staus Quo - Caroline

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