Welcome

diskant is an independent music community based in Glasgow, Scotland and we have a whole team of people from all over the UK and beyond writing about independent music and culture, from interviews with new and established bands and labels to record and fanzine reviews and articles on art, festivals and politics. There's over ten years of content here so dig in!

 Subscribe in a reader

Recent Interviews

diskant Staff Sites

More Sites We Like

Archive for the 'events' Category

Audioscope 2008

Posted: October 28th, 2008, by Marceline Smith

The days might be getting shorter and winter may be on its way but at least it’s almost time for this year’s Audioscope. In case you haven’t been paying attention, Audioscope is an annual musical extravaganza organised by diskant’s own Simon and Stu in aid of homeless charity Shelter. This year it takes place at the Jericho Tavern in Oxford on Saturday 15th November with a seriously good line-up including KID606, BOXCUTTER, THAT FUCKING TANK, SOEZA, HEY COLOSSUS and of course SUNNYVALE NOISE SUB-ELEMENT. There’s also a couple of warm-up gigs in the next two weeks including DON CABALLERO, ooh.

Sadly I cannot make it this year (sob!) so I hope you’ll all get yourselves along and report back on the fun. If you want a taste of just how much fun it can be, have a look-see at all this from the diskant archives:
My review of Audioscope 2006
Chris Summerlin on Audioscope 2004
Me again on Audioscope 2003
Stu’s diary of Audioscope 2002
Simon’s column on Audioscope 02
Review of the Audioscope CD compilation

Tickets are available RIGHT HERE RIGHT NOW and all the info on the bands, Shelter and all that gubbins at the lovely Audioscope website.

Kill Your Timid Notion 2008

Posted: October 7th, 2008, by Marceline Smith

Dundee’s annual experimental art and music festival is upon us. It takes place this very weekend at the DCA with the usual impressive line-up of experimental artists, musicians and filmmakers. During the weekend you can enjoy live performances, film, visual art, workshops and much more. Tickets are £25 for the weekend or £10 per day and you can view the whole line-up right here. If you’re based in Glasgow or Edinburgh, they’re even putting on FREE BUSES to get you there and back since there’s train strikes going on. First come first served so get there on time to secure your seat.

EDINBURGH – the bus (Browns) will leave from outside the Fruitmarket Gallery EH1 1DF at 17:30.
GLASGOW – the bus (Silver Choice) will leave from outside the CCA, 350 Sauchiehall Street, G2 3JD at 17:30.
Return journeys from DCA at the end of the performances, around 23:15.

If you’re not in Scotland then fear not, as KYTN will be on tour in November and December. More info at Arika.

diskant rewind: Mild Head Injury #13

Posted: October 7th, 2008, by Simon Minter

(Originally posted October 2002)

Mild Head Injury by Simon Minter

Without sounding too self-obsessed, I think that for this column I’m going to run through ‘the events of September 7’… that is, the AUDIOSCOPE festival, which I helped set up and which featured (among others, obviously) the band which I’m in. Is that self-obsessed? Am I self-obsessed for worrying about whether you think I’m self-obsessed? Arg. Oh well. If you don’t like it, turn off your TV and go and do something less boring instead, or something. Anyway, word up, it was a fine fine day and despite me obviously enjoying things in that certain special way which came from having helped make it happen, I was consistently to be found standing open-mouthed in front of bands thinking “wow, this band is actually something special…” A result, as they say! And it looks we raised about three thousand pounds for charity, too! (The charity being Shelter, who want everybody in the country to have a proper home, a worthwhile and honourable cause I hope you’ll all agree).

Anyway, first up was my band (me! me! me!) SUNNYVALE NOISE SUB-ELEMENT, and we played either (a) a stunning set of mindbending electronified existential punk rock music with effortless precision, or (b) a somewhat disappointing set marred by ‘bad sound’ (honest!), albeit with some very pleasant slides being shown at the same time. Take your pick from these decisions based on whether you (a) didn’t see us, or (b) did.

DUSTBALL appeared on stage next, with a surprisingly early slot (due to some rock and roll commitment or other) for one of Oxford’s favourite bands. Now I’ve seen Dustball play live a few times before, and always found them to pleasantly amiable, like a more raucous (early-) Ash or a less angry Hüsker Dü, like all catchy melodies and choppy chop chop noise guitars and so on. But this time, I’m not sure what it was, maybe they’d just had their Ready Brek or something, they were absolutely blindingly spot on! Fiercely confident in their songs and treading the thin line between audience-pleasing and audience-baiting. I know that they play live, like, 5 times a week or so, but they seem to have suddenly magicked up a stunner of a show which has let them become (to me, at least), a ‘real’ band instead of a ‘local’ band.

Continue reading »

Finland invades Glasgow tonight (gently)

Posted: September 19th, 2008, by Stan Tontas

I nearly forgot about this at the CCA tonight. Plenty of unpronounceable but genius Finnish artists on Fönal Records are playing.

  • KEMIALLISET YSTÄVÄT & AXOLOTL
  • ES & FURSAXA
  • ISLAJA, BLEVIN BLECTUM & SAMARA LUBELSKI
  • DREAM TRIANGLE (TOMUTONTTU & SKATERS)

If this had happened 2 years ago I would’ve exploded with joy; now I’m just excited, in a tea and knitted jumper kind of way. First gig for a long time where I’ve thought “just £10? excellent.”

nuts n seeds

Posted: September 4th, 2008, by Stan Tontas

Nuts & Seeds are maybe the most interesting gig promoters in Glasgow at the moment. The last show of theirs I went to was Vialka at the 13th Note, where they were giving away a cute miniature catalogue of their upcoming gigs, all of which looked good.

There’s one at the Flying Duck (hidden up the hill from Walkabout, but they’re too cool to advertise that fact :P) on the 10th September. It features Peeesseye, “yapping three-headed (former) NYC electroacoustic junkyard dog who evades lunk scumnoise pound & braniac improv leashes to dig up free music’s old bones & birth it’s own avant-mongrel sounds.”

Add in some guitar and big Taiko drum for a £4 door tax and it sounds like a good night…

Capsule needs YOU!

Posted: September 1st, 2008, by Marceline Smith

CLICK HERE!

Free noise in Edinburgh

Posted: August 12th, 2008, by Stan Tontas

Edinburgh festival? Gash. But some interesting stuff occasionally slips through the sketchshow-pitching oxbridge footlight hordes. See this for the 22nd & 23rd of this month:

Flyer for noise gig in Edinburgh

I’m told “will be somewhat crazy japanese performance with theremin and other unusual instruments,” it’s free and it’s in the very nice Botanic gardens. What’s not to like?

(Well, the press release, which sounds like it came from some grant-awarding body but never mind.) If anyone gets along to this I’d be interested to hear how it was.

Thank you thank you!

Posted: August 9th, 2008, by Marceline Smith

YAY. Thanks so much to everyone that made last night a success. It was so much fun and we made a lot more money than I could have hoped for. Enormous thanks to Findo Gask for being both awesome and all-round good guys and to Sunnyvale Noise Sub-element (and Alice!) for driving all the way from Oxford only to be awoken at 8am this morning by the orange marchers. They were also awesome.

Big thanks also to Claire and Jo for manning the Tombola – which went down a storm with almost every prize won – and to Alasdair, Nicolette, Chris, Stew and everyone at the CCA. And of course, everyone who came down, paid their money and had fun. You all rock!

More photos and stuff laters but for now my head hurts. You can still buy copies of the excellent and hilarious diskant zine and the diskant fun badge set so there’s still some fun to be had if you couldn’t make it down.

diskant party prizes

Posted: July 31st, 2008, by Marceline Smith

Maybe you thought we were joking about the whole indie tombola idea but no sir. I have been pestering everyone even vaguely connected to diskant and the prizes have been rolling in. You can go see them all here on Flickr.

There’s still a few more to turn up but so far you could literally be winning any of the following:

– CDs by Part Chimp, Envy, Growing and Torche, a deSalvo 7″ and a label sampler from Scotland’s most tremendous record label, Rock Action.
– Singles and lovely embroidered patches from Brighton’s Blood Red Shoes, currently taking the world by storm (and thus dashing all hopes of The Oedipus reforming for our party).
– Albums by Polaris, Bilge Pump and Hirameka Hi-Fi plus lots of samplers from the UK’s best groomed label, Nottingham’s Gringo Records.
– Stacks of joy from indie legend Alistair Fitchett including 7″s on his Unpopular Records label, a full set of I Wish I Was Unpopular CDRs, badges and a special edition package of original drawings.
– Hilarious emo-broidery cross stitch samplers from Glasgow’s craft legends Miso Funky.
– 5 sets of CDs by The Marcia Blaine School For Girls, Like A Stuntman, The Village Orchestra and the Some Paths Lead Back Again compilation on London’s friendly experimental label Highpoint Lowlife.
– CDs from Oxford’s electro noise terrorists, Sunnyvale Noise Sub-element
– A lovely 7″ single from Leeds band Sailors
– Handcrafted jewellery, Scrabble bracelet and lots of badges by Glasgow’s crafty t-boo
– Postcard sets of seaside joys and badges by I Like, Scotland’s most uniquely interesting blog.
– A signed copy of our own JGram‘s book, the tale of the first person in the UK to get sacked for blogging.
– Vinyl box sets and handmade accessories from my own little venture, Asking For Trouble
– No tombola is complete without a bottle of Kia-Ora, some Mr Kipling french fancies and some Babycham so they’ll all be there too, fear not!

Get ye down to the CCA in Glasgow on 08/08/08 for a chance to win! If you’ve never encountered a tombola before (what have you been doing with your life?!), then take it from me; the odds are you will win something.

More info here >>

diskant rewind: Honey Is Funny #3

Posted: July 25th, 2008, by Chris Summerlin

(Originally posted May 2002)

Honey Is Funny by Chris Summerlin

So anyway.

My intention was to write loads on why the notion of punk rock is bullshit but Luke Younger told me he was writing a column on why hardcore sucks so the appeal seems to have gone all of a sudden.

To be honest being so fucking miserable all the time has its downsides. My job is perhaps the worst it’s ever been in my life to the point where my bosses told me they thought my commitment was unacceptable because I flat refused to cancel my (pre booked!) holiday to go to ATP because the work load had doubled and I should put the job first.

I considered dropping my pants and placing my cock and balls on a gold tray and asking them to take a long run up and do their best.

I won’t bore you with the details. It’s all relative in the sense that even the very finest parts of my job can be equalled by a really good shit, or cheese on toast in terms of satisfaction in an unpaid environment.

But just to fill you in, I work for the northern branch of a large company. There is/was a southern branch that does/did the same job but used a totally different system to do it. The bosses decided our system was better so began a process of transferring all data from the south to our system in the north. The good bit is it hasn’t worked. But they sacked everyone in the south before realising this so all of a sudden (with just a weekend’s warning) the goalposts of my job have changed dramatically as I am doing the job previously done by our southern colleagues.

I have heard my role in all this referred to as a “challenge”. I prefer the less Record Breakers style terminology of “getting done in the ass”.

Fuck them.

Needless to say I went to ATP (though thoughts of my job tried their best to invade my mind during most of the bands) so in a break from moaning here’s my round up kinda thing.

First weekend was cool though the bands didn’t make much of an impression with notable exceptions such as Blonde Redhead who were in another league. It looked almost choreographed it was so cool. Some people found this unappealing, I just couldn’t take my eyes off them. It was telling that they kept songs from the last record to a minimum and just hit us with the rock. The social side on the first weekend was awesome though. Second weekend was the exact opposite, the place was like a morgue but the bands all blew me away.

Shellac especially.

I guess if you know me this is not much of a surprise but what blew me away was the amount of genuine heart in their performance, especially coming from a band whose reputation is founded on being blunt, to-the-point, economical, machines, emotionless.

I saw a lot of people from bands I knew watching Shellac and it struck me that loads of bands get compared to Shellac in the sense that they are an economical way of a music journo saying a band is angular, angry and sparse (in the same way as a band playing sparse, spooky music can be likened to Slint to save column space). But how many bands are as genuinely rich or deep as the real thing? None of them.

How many bands have the ability to come up with something as concise and affecting as Billiard Player Song lyrically (or as rocking musically) without feeling the need to trumpet the reasons? But Shellac call it the Billiard Player Song. How many bands would be able to write something like Prayer To God without a 2 page press release detailing (or at least hinting at) the object of the song’s venom?

Seeing Albini cradling his guitar in his arms and slow dancing round the stage with it was incredible. People laugh a lot when he introduces songs. I remember once I saw Shellac and he introduced the Billiard Player Song as being about “a sense of immense loss” and people laughed. They should have been listening. That Shellac could care less that they weren’t only makes them more appealing to me. It’s rare that a band so loud and grand can have the good sense to be subtle too.

Continue reading »