Live in Edinburgh This Week – 14th February 2011

I had an awesome week of live music last week, from the Dylan Uncovered on Thursday (from which there is some recorded audio of Esperi and Yusuf Azak’s sets here), to Ringo Deathstarr on Friday and finally Conquering Animal Sound on Saturday.

This week promises to be a little more spread out, but nevertheless just as good.  As well as the return of the Ides of Toad gigs on Saturday (with an ear-carressingly excellent lineup, I might add) we will be recording a Toad Session with Armellodie RecordsThirty Pounds of Bone.  The Rob St. John one will be published this Saturday as well, and Rob himself will be here all week recording his debut album, so I am going to be like a giddy little puppy until the inevitable crash on Sunday, I would imagine.

In other news, I assume you’ve heard about Radiohead’s new album?  Presumably inspired by Edinburgh’s Gerry Loves Records, they are releasing the world’s second ever record packaged in newsprint.  Ah well, we all need to draw inspiration from somewhere, and apparently the Hollies don’t have any more good songs to rip off*.

I have to confess that I don’t think Radiohead have released anything which has been much cop since Amnesiac, but I really do salute their excellent adjustment to selling music in the Twenty-First Century.  I know this is all much easier when you are already as famous as they are, but absolutely no-one has adjusted as well, as quickly or as consistently innovatively as they have.  The special edition isn’t even all that pricey – just thirty quid – and I bet it’s fucking gorgeous.

Anyhow, where were we?  Oh yes, gigs:

Tuesday 15th February 2011: Ryan Francesconi, Rob St.John & The Wee Rogue at Old St. Paul’s Church on Jeffrey Street.

Ryan Francesconi is a composer who does a lot of arranging for Joanna Newsom (who has described him as a genius on more than one occasion).  He has recorded several albums of his own, including some amazing solo guitar stuff, which he will be performing on Tuesday, along with some of his Balkan stuff.  Support will come from the excellent Wee Rogue and from Rob St. John – and for those who worry about duplicating their entertainment, Rob will be playing a totally different set to Saturday’s Ides of Toad gig, so I strongly recommend going to both.

Wednesday 16th February 2011: The Last Battle, Letters & Oso Street Outreach at Henry’s Cellar Bar.

This is an interesting one.  I was contacted by Letters’ US PR guys before the band had ever played in Edinburgh, which is actually their hometown.  They were described recently by The Pop Cop as ‘Scotland’s hottest new band’, which seems a little odd for a band who has never played a gig yet, and you can preview a couple of their songs here if you like, and read their interview with Kowalskiy here.

Thursday 17th February 2011: Kill it Kid & Scoundrels at the Electric Circus.

I wasn’t as smitten with the Kill it Kid album as I had expected to be, but by all accounts they are a irresistible force live, and I reckon this could well be worth a punt.  The vocals alone are powerful as hell, and when their bluesy rock ‘n’ roll really gets going I reckon it could be pretty bloody impressive.

Kill it Kid – Send Me and Angel Down

Saturday 19th February 2011: Rob St.John, Ziggy Campbell & Thirty Pounds of Bone at the Wee Red Bar.

This is going to be a bonanza of goodness.  As well as the awesomeness promised in the official lineup, we also have a special guest added to the bill who we are, for carbonated beverage-related reasons, having to pretend is a secret (the only American band on the label, named after a certain Scottish lake, you get the picture).  Also, Thirty Pounds of Bone will be travelling up from the very bottom left hand corner of the island to play a rare gig up here, and people have told me that the last time they saw him, he was so good that they travelled halfway across Scotland to seem him play the next day again.  Oh, and Rob has promised to play Fucking Loud, by all accounts, so I am expecting heckles of ‘Judas!’ from you.  And if your musical knickers weren’t damp enough already, we also have that Ziggy fella from FOUND, whose own album is released in a few weeks too.  100% pure unadulterated lineup gold!

Loch Lomond – Elephants & Little Girls (Toad Session)

Saturday 19th February 2011: French Wives EP Launch at Sneaky Pete’s.

Sneaky’s have some really good stuff programmed in for the next month or two, so it’s worth just generally checking out their listings, but this is the one which stood out for me this week.

French Wives – Me vs. Me

*Dear Radiohead fanatics, that was a joke.  Please do not form an angry mob and try and burn the house down because you hate me for poking gentle fun at your favourite band.