top of page
  • Alistair Braidwood

November, Nae Danger: The Best New Music Of The Last Month…

This roundup of November promises all thriller, nae filler, with some of my favourite artists returning to add some seasonal cheer, and some terrific ‘new to me’ bands as well. Let’s not hang about.

Jo Mango has released a mesmeric new EP, When We Lived In The Crook Of A Tree, on Olive Grove Records, another example of her mastery of music, and the confidence she has in who she is and what she plays; the two are inseparable. Regular readers will know by now, I am a fan. You can still hear Jo playing and chatting with Chris Ward and I on the Scots Whay Hae! podcast from back in February; one of the most pleasant afternoons of the year. Put simply, this is music I listen to as it brings warmth and comfort. But enough of that, here’s the video for the title track:

A great example of just how wonderfully village like Scotland can be is catering a lovely couple’s wedding in Anstruther one week, and the next you see the groom playing bass on stage in Glasgow. That’s what happened last year when I saw saw The Bad Books, as they were then, as part of an excellent line-up put together by the legendary Peenko and Aye Tunes. Luckily for me, Scott likes my lasagne, and I like their music. They are now Book Group and they make creating memorable songs appear effortless. To prove it this is their new single, Victory Lap. This is cracking stuff, with a great video to boot:

The Sundance Shatter have been about for a wee while, but I only got round to listening to them last month, and I’m very glad I did. They have an EP out, Sunrise, which includes their first single Wasted In Love. It’s one of those songs which carries you along as it builds to a rousing finale, and then you want to go back and start all over again. Here’s the video:

Drunk Mule have an absolutely brilliant album out, Mon The Weekend, which honestly doesn’t have a duff track, (Half Can Superman is my current favourite) and which I can best describe as The Happy Mondays meets Arab Strap, and what a night out that would be. That’s what Drunk Mule soundtrack. You must check out the whole album, but I had to post the video to the title track as it’s ace:

Talking about soundtracks, instrumentalists Ubre Blanca seem determined to soundtrack the world in the manner of John Carpenter in charge of the BBC Radiophonic Workshop, which is a marvellous thing in case you’re in any doubt, but if you are, have a listen to the following and it just may change your mind. This is a world I want to live in:

I always have time for The Bird and the Monkey as they never fail to surprise and delight, and their tribute to Lou Reed, Bowery Bums, is no exception. It certainly channels Reed and Bowie from round about the Berlin adventures. But just when you think you know what’s going to play out, trumpets and piano come in, and it goes in another direction entirely, and what starts off as a tribute becomes a celebration. The Bird and the Monkey live and breathe music, and I, for one, am very glad they are around:

Rob St John released one of the albums of 2011 with Weald, and he is back in collaboration with Tommy Perman (who you may know as a member of FOUND) with a fascinating project Water Of Life, inspired by the flow of water through Edinburgh. Wait, come back… If you know St John’s work you know you are in for something wonderful, and Perman’s pictures, which are equally important, are quite stunning. You can read all about it here, but in the meantime, this is Sources and Springs, Abercrombie, 1949:

I’m going to finish with some excellent singing and songwriting from Michael Cassidy. This is his new single Everybody’s Scared, and it’s a great track and a fine way to bring to an end what has been a very pleasurable selection to put together:

That’s yer whack for November. The top tracks of the year will be with you soon, but until then, I’m off to listen to all of the above, in order, all over again…


Thanks for subscribing!

bottom of page