At the end of the year a number of hand-picked arbiters of taste are invited to contribute their choice of the previous 12 months to this blog. Last December Danny McCahon, a man who has seen the world & can take it or leave it, elected to stick close to home. He highlighted 2 bands from Glasgow, both of them yet to make any recordings. Danny is a man who seems to be around 8 months ahead of the game because both Lola In Slacks & Veloninos have new, noteworthy tunes which are imminently to be released.
First up Lola In Slacks, named I assume from Nabakov’s “Lolita”, who are now so famous that they have been on the telly. They performed 2 songs “Bisous du Mistral” & their debut single “Tramlines” on the Riverside Show for Scottish TV & it’s great to have some proper sound & vision of a band that surely deserves a wider audience. After Danny’s tip I checked L.I.S’. tunes on Soundcloud & was instantly caught. I guess that the group’s languid, chic, European vibe is epitomised by singer/songwriter Lou Reid (real name, great name) but guitarist/composer Brian McFie’s soundscapes and sympatico support from the rest of the band make them the real deal.
I’m not going to drop the obvious names but this week I have been enjoying the later recordings of Marlene Dietrich & Lola In Slacks are right up that strasse. “Tramlines” is released at the end of August on Stereogram & I look forward to an album where the group can stretch out & properly hit the atmosphere they are aiming for.
Veloninos were formed in 2013 but the members have been around before. Davie Duncan (vocals, rhythm & er…moothie) & Kenny McLennan (guitar) were part of the Shakin’ Pyramids (1980-83) the Scottish rockabilly trio whose debut single was “Reeferbilly Boogie”, 1st LP “Skin ‘Em Up”…ahem. The pair have joined with old friends Laurie Cuffe (guitar) & Shug Jamieson (big bassman) & are playing music inspired by their early influences, Hank Williams, Gene Vincent, the Everly Brothers & others, playing it very well too. The available Y-tube clips can lack the more electric charge of their recently released 6 track digital EP so I’ve included a sampler of all 6 tracks here. Over at www.veloninos.com you can learn all you need about the band, watch the videos & buy the EP.
Lastly (but by no means leastly) is a group who shared the stage with the above & others at the annual Merchant City Festival last weekend & this clip is from that gig. The Debris Rose is David Ritchie’s group & this is a driving R&B transposition of Don Cherry’s train song “Clicky Clacky” that Cherry recorded with Codona in 1983. If that sentence is not enough to confirm his impeccable musical taste then take it from me it is. David has been promising to record new Debris Rose material but life, lassitude & line-up changes (not necessarily in that order) have got in the way. David is the guy on our stage left, the one wrestling with the uppity guitar. On drums is Lesley McLaren who, the sharp-eyed among you will have already noticed, is also the drummer with Lola In Slacks. Lesley appears to be a member of a few groups & on this track she shows why her talents are in such demand. She also appears to be wearing the same hooped T-shirt on both occasions. If they are different garments from an extensive though similar collection then I apologise for my presumption.
So, next December, when Danny makes his, now traditional, return to these pages we should take note. I may disallow the inclusion of the industrial metal of Seraph Sin on the grounds that his son Roddy is a member but when Danny is listening at Xmas, Glasgow & ourselves shouldn’t take until the following summer to catch up.