Category Archives: Pop

BIG STAR-KEEP AN EYE ON THE SKY.

BIG STAR-KEEP AN EYE ON THE SKY. Sadly, in music, talent doesn’t equate to commercial success. If it did, Big Star would’ve been the biggest bands in musical history. That wasn’t the case. Lady luck failed to smile on Big Star when they released a trio of albums between 1972 and 1978. Despite this, nowadays, …

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CAMERA OBSCURA-BIGGEST BLUEST HI-FI.

CAMERA OBSCURA-BIGGEST BLUEST HI-FI. Ever since they formed in 1996, Camera Obscura have been doing things their way. It’s paid off though. Nineteen years later, and Camera Obscura have established a reputation as one of finest purveyors of hook heavy, perfect pop. During that period, Camera Obscura released five albums. Their debut album was 2001s …

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BOB DYLAN-SHADOWS IN THE NIGHT.

BOB DYLAN-SHADOWS IN THE NIGHT. There aren’t many recording artists whose career spans fifty-three years. Bob Dylan’s has. There’s a reason for this. Constantly, Bob Dylan has sought to reinvent himself. Having began life as a folk singer, he’s released albums of country, gospel, blues, rock ’n’ roll and rockabilly to jazz and even the …

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CIAO BELLA! ITALIAN GIRL SINGERS OF THE 60S.

CIAO BELLA! ITALIAN GIRL SINGERS OF THE 60S. Ciao Bella! Italian Girl Singers Of The 60s, Ace International’s first compilation of 2015, is described as “groovy girl-pop.” That’s the perfect description of the latest compilation of girl-pop from Ace Records. Previously, Ace Records have released compilations of American, French and Japanese girl-pop. Other record companies …

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BELLE AND SEBASTIAN-GIRLS IN PEACETIME WANT TO DANCE.

BELLE AND SEBASTIAN-GIRLS IN PEACETIME WANT TO DANCE. Over four years have passed since Belle and Sebastian released their eighth studio album, Belle and Sebastian Write About Love. Since then, Belle and Sebastian’s only release was The Third Eye Centre, a nineteen track retrospective released in August 2013. It featured rarities, remixes, B-Sides, non-album tracks …

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THE BATHERS-KELVINGROVE BABY.

THE BATHERS-KELVINGROVE BABY. 2015 marks the thirtieth anniversary of a Scottish musical institution, The Bathers. They were formed in Glasgow, in 1985, by singer, songwriter and troubled troubadour Chris Thompson and released six albums between 1987 and 1999. The Bathers fifth album was Kelvingrove Baby, a minor classic, that’s one of the finest Scottish albums …

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THE BEST SCOTTISH ALBUMS OF 2014.

THE BEST SCOTTISH ALBUMS OF 2014. In my final look back at 2014’s releases, I turn my attention to what I regard as the best Scottish albums. They’re a mixture of new albums, reissues and box sets. Familiar faces and new names sit side-by-side in my list of the best Scottish albums of 2014. These …

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THE FIFTY BEST REISSUES OF 2014-PART 3.

THE FIFTY BEST REISSUES OF 2014-PART 3. ELTON JOHN-GOODBYE YELLOW BRICK ROAD. Although critical acclaim and commercial success were constant companions for Elton John between 1970 and 1978, one year stood out, 1973. During 1973, Elton released two of his most successful albums. The first of these two albums was Don’t Shoot Me I’m Only …

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THE FIFTY BEST REISSUES OF 2014-PART 4.

THE FIFTY BEST REISSUES OF 2014-PART 4. TERRY REID-RIVER. By 1973, Terry Reid’s contract with Mickie Most was over. Now Terry’s career could resume. He signed to Atlantic Records and began work on his third solo album, River, which was rereleased by BGO Records during 2014. Produced by Yes’ Eddy Offord and Tom Dowd, River …

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SMALL FACES-OGDENS’ NUT GONE FLAKE.

SMALL FACES-OGDENS’ NUT GONE FLAKE. For British music, the sixties were a golden era. This golden era started with The Beatles and Rolling Stones, two of music’s most influential groups. By 1964, the British Invasion began. British groups conquered America, and influenced American music. Suddenly, aspiring American musicians became sworn Anglophiles. As the sixties progressed, …

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WINGS-VENUS AND MARS.

WINGS-VENUS AND MARS. Although their first two albums had been a commercial success, Paul McCartney and Wings’ third album, Band On The Run, was a game-changer. It was released on 5th December 1973, and reached number one in America,  Australia, Britain, Canada and Norway. This resulted in Band On The Run being certified triple platinum …

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BUILDING INSTRUMENT-BUILDING INSTRUMENT.

BUILDING INSTRUMENT-BUILDING INSTRUMENT. Although Building Instrument formed in 2008, it’s taken them six years to release their eponymous debut album. Building Instrument, which was recently released on Hubro Music was recorded over a period of several years. During that time, Building Instrument’s trademark sound evolved.  Originally, when Building Instrument formed, they decided to make electronic …

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NIPPON GIRLS 2-JAPANESE POP, BEAT AND ROCK ’N’ ROLL 1965-1970.

NIPPON GIRLS 2-JAPANESE POP, BEAT AND ROCK ’N’ ROLL 1965-1970. It was five years ago, that Big Beat International, a subsidiary of Ace Records, released Nippon Girls- Japanese Pop, Beat and Bossa Nova 1966-1970 to critical acclaim. For many people, this was their introduction to the  groovy, eclectic sounds of sixties Japanese pop. What an …

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MORENO VELOSO-COISA BOA.

MORENO VELOSO-COISA BOA. Thirteen years have passed since Moreno Veloso released his debut album Music Typewriter. Since then, Moreno has put his solo career on hold, concentrating instead, on production. Moreno has spent over a decade years learning, and honing his production skills. This paid off.  In 2006, Moreno was asked to produce his father’s …

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THE LONDON AMERICAN LABEL YEAR BY YEAR 1965.

THE LONDON AMERICAN LABEL YEAR BY YEAR 1965. For a generation of music lovers, their introduction to American pop, rock ’n’ roll and soul was the London American label. It released the latest American hit singles. This had been the case since the mid-fifties.  London American had been licensing singles by Atlantic, Chess, Dot, Imperial, …

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LEWIS BALOUE-ROMANTIC TIMES.

LEWIS BALOUE-ROMANTIC TIMES. Earlier this year, music saw a ghost. The man who called himself Lewis arose from the dead. Lewis gave no explanation where he’d been or what he’d been doing. There was an element of bemusement that L’Amour, his 1983 debut album, had sparked such interest in his life and whereabouts. However, Lewis …

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BELLE AND SEBASTIAN-THE BOY WITH THE ARAB STRAP.

BELLE AND SEBASTIAN-THE BOY WITH THE ARAB STRAP. Unique. That describes Belle and Sebastian. They’re a band who do things their way. That’s been the case since Stuart Murdoch and Stuart David formed Belle and Sebastian in 1996. The two Stuarts met at Stow College in Glasgow. That’s where they formed Belle and Sebastian. They released their debut single and album …

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TODD RUNDGREN-RUNT AND THE ALTERNATE RUNT.

TODD RUNDGREN-RUNT AND THE ALTERNATE RUNT. Singer, songwriter, multi-instrumentalist and producer describes Todd Rundgren. His career has spanned over forty years. During that period, Todd Rundgren released three albums with Nazz, and over twenty solo albums. His debut solo album was Runt which was released in 1970. Runt marked the debut of the man many …

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SHE DID IT! THE SONGS OF JACKIE DESHANNON VOLUME 2.

SHE DID IT! THE SONGS OF JACKIE DESHANNON VOLUME 2. When eventually, the definitive history of modern music is written, Jackie DeShannon will be remembered as one of the first, and most successful singer -songwriters. Her career began in 1956, when as Sherry Lee, she released her debut single Baby Honey. Jackie was just fifteen. …

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THE PEARLFISHERS- OPEN UP YOUR COLOURING BOOK.

THE PEARLFISHERS- OPEN UP YOUR COLOURING BOOK. “Everything comes to he who waits.” So the sayings goes.  Even a new album from The Pearlfishers. Recently, Scotland’s best kept musical secret, The Pearlfishers, released their seventh album, Open Up Your Colouring Book, on Marina Records. Open Up Your Colouring Book was released seven years after their …

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