CATHOUSE:

imageIf you are in Glasgow and a fan of alternative music, Cathouse is the place to be.

The blend of all things rock and metal makes it one of favourite places in the city as both a club and a live music venue.

Cathouse is alongside the likes of Ivory Blacks and (occasionally) Garage as one of the few venues in Glasgow where you can go to experience real alternative music.

I remember my first visit to Cathouse, which came after a string of visits to various clubs throughout the city. I had pretty much written off the club side of Glasgow’s nightlife, thinking that there was nothing that really appealed to my music taste. Then out of nowhere came Cathouse.

The atmosphere was brilliant and I felt like I was finally around some like-minded people. It was busy, but not to the point of annoyance and there was plenty of room to dance.

I am yet to see a live gig in the venue but have heard nothing but good things. There are some great acts taking to the Cathouse stage, namely Kvelertak, who I talked about in my Top 5 post last week, which you can find here.

One of the main things I like about Cathouse, aside from the excellent music, is the blend of people who go. There is such a huge variety that you don’t find in the more conventional clubs and it makes for a much funner and more interesting experience.

I am planning on many more visits to Cathouse in my second year and I hope to catch some live gigs there very soon!

Image: cathouse.co.uk

 

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15 TIMES DEAD:

432002_10150632554974268_1690552335_n15 Times Dead are a metal band based in Glasgow. Formed in 2004, the band made it through to the UK finals of Bloodstock Unsigned in 2008.

They released a debut album in 2012 and have been playing gigs since, with a couple of exciting ones scheduled this month.

They are playing support on Friday in Ivory Blacks for metal acts Beholder and Cambion. It looks like it’s going to be a great night of metal

They will also be in Ivory Blacks again on the 22nd as part of Bloodstock’s Metal 2 The Masses Roadshow 2014. This tour is an initiative which allows up and coming bands to play in venues across the UK and is run along the same lines as the New Blood stage at the festival itself, which is held in August and headlined by the likes of Megadeath.

I love these guys’ sound, often referred to as Girth Metal by their fans, a term the band have embraced. It’s like a combination of thrash and groove that makes for great listening. I’m yet to see 15 Times Dead live but judging by their Youtube videos they’ve got a great stage presence and I can’t wait to see this in the flesh.

The influence from some of metal’s greats such as Metallica and Pantera they still manage to have their own style. This allows them to stand out in a busy scene and it would be great to hear some new music from them soon.

If you’re a metal fan in Glasgow get yourself down to Ivory Black’s and see these guys!

Image: https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10150632554974268&set=a.10150632554914268.407038.92575834267&type=1&theater

 

EDA:

EDA are an  a935635_583250598365864_1497301098_nlternative band hailing from Glasgow.

The foursome were formed in 2009. I first came across them when they played in Shetland last year as part of Heavy Metal Buffet’s The Buffet 2013 festival.

At a festival filled with incredible talent from so many different acts, EDA still managed to stand out.

I was immediately struck by their unusual sound, a blend of electronic and heavy rock sound. I was particularly impressed by Chris Findlay’s vocals. He has quite a unique, jarring voice that works well in their songs.

They released a single, We Are One, last year which you can see below. You can also download it for free from their website, which you can find right here: edaofficialuk.com

The band gigged in Glasgow last month, performing in the O2 ABC alongside another Glasgow band, Mountains Under Oceans and they have also performed in a few other venues in Scotland this year.

I haven’y managed to make it to see them myself since I started university, but I’m hoping to see them at the next possible opportunity, be that in Shetland or on the mainland.

They have been busy working on new music, keeping fans such as myself posted via their Facebook page. If you are anyway interested in the alternative scene in Glasgow, I suggest you give their page a like so you can keep up to date with gigs and any upcoming releases.

I can’t wait to hear what they have been working on!

Check out their video for single We Are One HERE:

 

KURT COBAIN TRIBUTE @ KING TUTS:

Kurt-CobainYesterday marked the 20th anniversary of Kurt Cobain’s suicide. Often referred to as the “reluctant voice of a generation” and the “king of grunge”, Cobain was the frontman of grunge trio Nirvana, who’s song Smells Like Teen Spirit single-handedly brought the Seattle Sound to prominence.

Nirvana released a total of three studio albums and it was their second, Nevermind, that cast them into the mainstream spotlight and popularised alternative music.

The trio visited Glasgow in 1991 as part of their Nevermind tour, with fans paying just £6 to see the now legendary trio. It’s not the best quality, but you can hear an audio recording of the gig here:

The anniversary has made the news all over the world, from BBC to NMEso a tribute night of music comes as no surprise.

King Tut’s was the venue, and the evening featured a host of local talent doing a mixture of Nirvana covers and their own material. All proceeds went to the Scottish Association for Mental Health.

A total of eight bands took to the stage and Nirvana tracks from all three albums were covered to varying levels of success. The room was packed and the gig was a sell-out. The crowd was made up of a huge variety of age-groups, probably due to the fact that every generation feels like they have a claim on Nirvana.

The gig was great overall with a range of talent, all of whom had clearly been influenced by Nirvana in some way. The only real issue I had was with the change-overs between bands. Each act only played three or four songs and the change-overs between them were slow as they each did a short sound-check, taking almost as long as each short set. At some points it was clear that the crowd was getting restless, especially towards the end.

Michael Cassidy impressed with their covers of Lithium and Heart Shaped Box, perfectly capturing the grunge feel. You can thus imagine my shock when they performed their own track and revealed themselves as a Bubblegum Rock band.

 Chris Devotion and the Expectations didn’t look very “grungy” in their smart clothes so I have to admit I was quite surprised and impressed by their alternative rock sound.

United FruitTijuana Bibles and Poor Thingsall impressed with different sounds, as did Felix Champion  and Evil Edison. It was great to see such a variety of acts over the course of one night and it opened my eyes to a few different bands who I will be sure to try to see again live.

222Paisley-based trio Carnivores were the final act of the night and quick became my favourites when they played one of my favourite Nirvana songs, Drain You.

Frontman Kenny Leckie then addressed the audience, introducing the final song of the night:

“Nobody was going to play this tonight, but if it wasn’t for this song, none of us would probably  be here.”

The trio then sent the crowd into a frenzy as they launched into Smells Like Teen Spirit.

If you want to read some more about Cobain, there is a great article that was written by Jonathan Freedland in the aftermath of his death, which The Guardian republished on their blog: http://www.theguardian.com/music/from-the-archive-blog/2014/apr/05/kurt-cobain-an-icon-of-alienation

And finally, here is Nirvana’s famous MTV Unplugged performance from 1993, rest in peace KC:

Image Credits: http://www.theneonangels.com/2012/kurt-cobain-day-grunge-died/

FIVE FINGER DEATH PUNCH @ THE O2 ACADEMY:

five-finger-death-punch-400lvg073009Five Finger Death Punch were in Glasgow on Thursday to play the O2 Academy. I was gutted to miss this gig as I’m quite a fan of the five-piece and i’ve heard nothing but good things from those who did attend.

They were performing in Glasgow as part of their European tour, which saw them return to the UK after performing here with Avenged Sevenfold last year.

The band released two albums last year, their first new material in three years. The Wrong Side of Heaven and the Righteous Side of Hell, Volumes 1 & 2 are brilliant albums, boasting tracks that are among my personal favourites.

The also released a cover of classic track “House of the Rising Sun” last month and its become one of the highlights of their recent shows. Their intention is to eventually release a feature film, exciting news to their legions of fans across the world.

It was clear the gig was a huge success, with fans flocking to Twitter to share their excitement before, during and after:

My newsfeed on Facebook was also full of people raving about the concert. I’m hoping it’s not too long before their next visit to Glasgow, I won’t be missing it next time!

And finally, here is their rendition of House of the Rising Sun:

To find out more about the band, visit their website: http://www.fivefingerdeathpunch.com 

 

TOP 5 UPCOMING GIGS YOU CAN’T MISS:

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1.TEN TONNE DOZER (13th Note, 9th May)

One of my native island’s most successful musical exports, Ten Tonne Dozer are leaving Shetland for a UK tour and you’d be mad to miss it. The band, who won the Best Metal category of the Scottish Alternative Music Awards in 2011, are a must–see live act and the 13th Note is a fantastic venue. Be there!

 

2. BRODY DALLE (Garage, 21st April)

I can’t wait for this one – the former lead singer and guitarist of punk rock band The Distillers Brody Dalle is hitting Glasgow! She is touring to promote her debut solo album, Diploid Love, set for release at the end of the month. As a big fan of The Distillers, there’s no way I’m missing this!

Get your ticket HERE.

 

3. THE SEX PISTOLS EXPERIENCE (The Ferry, 18th April)

The days of the Sex Pistols are in long in the past, but this tribute band have got a lot of good hype surrounding them. Steve Jones, the Sex Pistols’ guitarist, has even called them “superb”.  The Sex Pistols Experience is perfect for fans who were too young to see the real thing, or for those of you who want to relive the good old days. This event also has the unique venue of the Ferry as a selling point – the gig will be taking place on a boat on the River Clyde.

Get your ticket HERE.

 

4.  KVELERTAK (Cathouse, 22nd April)

A six-piece metal band from Norway. Need I say any more? Kvelertak‘s songs are largely based on Norwegian and Viking mythology and their black metal sound is not to be ignored. You won’t care that they’re not singing in English – it adds to their charm, especially in a venue as great as Cathouse.

Get your ticket HERE.

 

5. NORMA JEAN (Classic Grand, 26th April)

Their ever-changing line-up doesn’t stop these guys from making excellent music. Norma Jean are hitting Europe this year after releasing Wrongdoers last year. The album was met with critical acclaim and is considered a return to form for the band, making this the perfect time to go see them live.

Here’s a recent video:

 

ACOUSTIC NIGHT @ NICE’N’SLEAZYS

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Nice’n’Sleazys is once of my favourite bars in Glasgow and every Monday they hold an acoustic night in the downstairs area.

This was the first time I had attended the event and it was clear from the start that there were plenty of regulars, with all the acts being introduced by their first names and everyone appearing to know the evening’s host, Jerry, who himself performed a Bo Diddley cover as well as his own song, Elizabitha.

There was a homely atmosphere – tables with tealight candles and beer crates place before the small stage as additional seating. As the night went on the numbers increased and there were soon lots of people standing at the bar, though it never felt overcrowded.

The level of talent, given that it was an open-mic night with mostly amateur performers, was high. There was also substantial variety in the kind of music, with some acts opting for covers whilst others performed their own material.

One particular highlight was busker David Burns, a regular sight on Sauchiehall Street. He categorises his various musical incarnations under the name “Marshall Chipped”. After plans for a new band fell through at the start of the year, Burns set himself the challenge of writing and producing his own album in time for release on April Fools Day. He had reached this goal and performed two songs from the album on the eve of its release. Find out more about the new album here:  http://marshallchipped.bandcamp.com

Other highlights included Andrea, a Canadian who had just moved to Scotland from Switzerland, who impressed with her understated performance and Melissa, who received one of the biggest rounds of applause for what she described as the “obligatory ex-boyfriend song”. Her strong, bluesy voice caught everyone’s attention and was one of the strongest performances of the evening.

It was also great to see a fellow Shetlander, Malachy Tallack, take to the stage and hold his own among the numerous other performers. You can find out more about his music here: http://www.malachymusic.com/

Overall the acoustic night was a fantastic example of the entertainment available in Glasgow’s city centre and I will definately return to Nice’n’Sleazys to see it again. And to finish, here is a video of one of the performers that I uploaded to Youtube: