Tag Archives: The Shithawks

Fuzzkill presents Sweaty Palms (EP launch), BIN MEN, The Shithawks, Dune Witch Trails at 13th Note, 24/9/15

Tonight is yet another launch from ravechild favourites the super prolific Fuzzkill Records, and another outstanding bill choked with sunshine begging, fuzzed up lo-fi pop tunes with a little surprise in the middle and a slightly darker twist at the end.

Opening proceedings is the sparky melodies and charming pop energy of Dune Witch Trails, who offer plenty to bop along to from beneath layers of fuzz and meandering basslines.

The nonchalant vocals from Kieran Thomas crack with attitude, but succeed into lulling you into a false sense of security before the band unleash speedy pop waves that drag you onto a sun kissed beach, despite this being one of the coldest nights Glasgow’s had in a while.

DWT successfully switch between a fiery hardcore energy, strutting lo-fi pop and dreary yet addictively spangly alt rock that lifts you out of your seat ready for a sing-along; which indeed one of the BIN MEN does, joining the band onstage, before an unnerving intro brings in the brilliant ‘Goldenrod Cigar’.

It’s a short, but uplifting set from a band with one of the most impressive releases to come of Glasgow this year and as Thomas downs his guitar and struts the stage with a far away look in his eye you know there’s more to come.

Up next is, familiar faces to a Fuzzkill night, The Shithawks and the Dundee trio deliver a set of roaring fury, with screaming guitars and garage-y vocals that emit a pure rock’n’roll vibe more familiar to the dirty south of the States than Tayside.

It’s not all just raucous energy with these guys though, there’s plenty of groove embedded into their set that gets your feet tapping; an always welcome addition to these shows.

The somewhat spanner in the works to your usual bill from one of our favourite record labels are the BIN MEN, and the stoner rap duo’s rowdy stage manner, infectious energy and sheer hilarity goes down a treat, bringing the audience down to front as they spit throw away yet brilliant bravado filled lyrics over dirty hip-hop beats.

There’s a shout out to the Antique Pony album, which is released this evening, before the duo go on a full tirade against said band, most of whom I’m told are present, it’s all tongue to cheek stuff though as the BIN MEN set the octane high with aggressively delivered shout of “Antique Pony we’re gonna kill you”.

It’s a short, but immensely engrossing set from a duo whose aggressive stage manner is only topped by their ridiculous subject matter; tracks titles like ‘If You Sellin Tickets You A Bitch’, ‘KP Snacks’ and ‘I’m Never Going To Pay Back My Student Loan’ may well give you a idea of what these guys are about – make sure to see them at the next opportunity you get.

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Then we’ve left with the headliners, tonight launching their Hollywood Wax EP, who has the unenviable task of following up the musical destruction left by the BIN MEN.

Thankfully the Glasgow four-piece are more than on their game and deliver a set that showcases their talent for creating a dark yet jaunty garage tinged sound that captures the basement’s attention with ease; that’s if it wasn’t already caught by bassist, Shaun Montgomery’s outlandish tartan trouser/waistcoat combo.

Sweaty Palms have been praised for drawing from a host of different styles, being labelled things like ‘garage goth’ and ‘sad surf’, both of which are apt at points this evening, and at times there’s even a fuzzy psychedelia about them.

Indeed Robbie Houston’s snarled vocals possess that unrelenting garage energy of Bobby Gillespie at his best and on occasion that sneery edge of a Yummy Fur era John McKeown, only with lyrics more fitting to 2015 than the 1990s (couldn’t resist).

They succeed easily in drowning the Note’s tiny basement in sound and have an eerie power that hypnotises the basement before unleashing it into a mini mospit; they occasionally touch a little heavier than a listen to their tape may suggest, still there’s enough joviality in the snarled lyrics and infectious energy that keep the set just about in the light and not the dergy darkness their jarring guitars are dragging you too.

It’s a compelling set from a band with a bright future, and yet another successful Fuzzkill launch.

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Words: Iain Dawson
Photos: Elina Lin

Doune The Rabbit Hole, 23/8/15

Sunday at Doune and we’ve found a touch of familiarity about the site, only today it seems to be filled with yellow as Colonel Mustard and the Dijon 5 closing things tonight and their fans seem to engulf the festival site in what could resemble a cult if you weren’t aware a silly, fun-times band were at the centre of it.

Still our day starts with food, and the food at Doune is the best you’ll eat at any festival; I opt for the French toast with bacon and maple syrup for breakfast, while Jess turns up with the most colourful breakfast roll I’ve ever witnessed containing; egg, smoked salmon and avocado.

Indeed today is full of indulgence in the food department, from barbeque salmon, to beer roasted brisket and plenty of veggie alternatives too it’s a joy to have this many options at a festival of this size.

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For the music my day starts in the Baino tent, as The Shithawks deliver a loud, fast rock ‘n’ roll assault on the those that have hit the darkened tent in the blissful early afternoon sunshine.

When the Dundee act hit their groove it’s powerfully engaging stuff, if a bit overwhelming for those trying to ease themselves out of a Sunday morning hangover.

Still, there’s plenty to dance as The Shithawks’ funk enthused basslines and infectious garage punk vocals, along with a never giving rhythm get things moving early on; it’s powerful stuff; could maybe have done with being a couple of bevvy’s down the line though and I don’t remember them having Aussie accents last time I saw them.

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Following the riotous start we find a nice spot to the side of the Jabberwocky stage in preparation for Prehistoric Friends.

Even through the majority of the crowd remain seated (except an the young woman performing yoga with her daughter near the front of the stage – you wouldn’t see this at any other festival) it’s clear they’re enjoying not only the beautiful weather, but also the atmospheric dream-pop coming from the stage.

Originally a duo Liam Chapman and Nichola Kerr are joined by a full band, allowing Chapman to showcase his enchanting vocals.

Prehistoric Friends’ lush synth based tones on a sunny day are the perfect remedy for a hangover and a highlight of the weekend.


Moving back to the Baino tent for something extremely different – Halfrican pack a punch as their powerhouse guitar pop shakes you awake.

Their performance is high pace, energetic and intense, but much like The Shithawks feels like it’s in too early a slot.

Nevertheless, it is clear the trio are enjoying themselves as they bounce around the stage in their matching outfits and the crowd clearly share the feeling as the beat drives the performance forward, allowing Sancho Buna’s cheeky sneered vocals to shine, a few even decide to go ‘taps aff’.

Tuff Love-2

Back at the Jabberwocky stage is Tuff Love, whose soft harmonies soaring over fuzzy guitars are as effortlessly vibrant as ever.

Their set is minimalistic, but mind-blowing and even through Suse Bear and Julie Eisenstein come as slightly shy, their music speaks for them gripping your attention and not letting it go.

Tuff Love are an extremely tight live band and deliver 45 minutes of grunged up pop goodness, which draws even the weariest of punters down to the front for a little dance.

C Duncan-5

Next on the Jabberwocky stage is the much talked about C Duncan and this was my first chance to catch him in a live setting and I’m not disappointed as his set seems perfectly suited for the early evening sunshine, as each track seems to seeks out the disappearing rays with fresh and lovely harmonies.

The general comparison Duncan seems to be receiving is to that of early Fleet Foxes, and it’s easy to see why as the gentle builds and lulling vocal style do posses an endearing campfire quality; a truly charming way to spend the sun’s descent.

Be Charlotte-11

I’ve heard good things about Be Charlotte over the last couple months and with Hector Bizerk’s own Audrey Tait on board I’m extremely excited to see what young Charlotte Brimner has to offer.

Brimner breaks the boundaries of what it means to be a singer-songwriter as not only does she sing, but also shows her true musicianship as she raps and plays while still managing to ooze bags of swagger, however Brimner’s voice is what really strikes you, as not only is it completely stunning, but utilised to its full potential, showcasing her unique tone and technical ability.

Them Beatles-1

Then it’s the cheery fun festival finale back at the Jabberwocky stage as Them Beatles pull out their best psychedelia era Beatles attire, hit character and transport you back to the 60s for a set of sing-along fun.

It’s charming stuff, as they delivery an array of favourites in the most convincing fashion you’ll see; tribute acts might not be for everyone, but if you’re going to see one it may as well be Them Beatles.

Before the drive back to Glasgow for the ever-daunting Monday morning in work, I manage to catch a few minutes of the experimental, avant-garde, free jazz stylings of Death Shanties from under the big tree, and while their music takes some accustoming to it deservedly pulls a crowd.

Saxophonist Sybren Renema is situated in the tree with drummer Alex Neilson powering out franticly engrossing drums from the floor below, it’s attention grasping stuff and the ideally bizarre way to end a very special festival.

More Photos

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Words: Iain Dawson/Jess Lavin
Photos: Bill Gray

Under The Covers Valentines Compilation [Fuzzkill]

Fuzzkill Records are becoming a force of nature on the Glasgow music scene, putting out releases by a wide array of great local bands, throwing the odd party of a show and generally just enjoying the well-deserved success that has been growing for a good while now.

This Valentines special cover comp is indicative of a label that’s in good form, one that gets to pull off the good idea for a good cause (all donations going to charity) and gets to bring together the roster and associates alike.

More importantly, for the bands themselves it’s a chance to have a good old legitimate chance at doing a favoured song, everybody in the hunt to do a good tribute.

I had the pleasure of playing with The Bellybuttons back a few months ago and I really dug on them, I loved the sound, so it was a pleasure to hear them open proceedings, doting their hat in a fine fashion to Arthur Alexander on ‘Anna (Go To Him)’.

The dreamy guitar lines here doing all the right things in place of the piano, good sincere vocals and all round a great cover.

Much loved PAWS bring a wonderful ‘Sea Of Love’ to the table, very distinctive in their style, and a short and definitely sweet effort.

I’m always pleased to see anyone cover Teenage Club, Pinact doing the right thing by being the band to do it here with a great no frills cover of the classic ‘Sparky’s Dream’.

The Beatles get representation in the form of ‘I Will’ as Poor Things do a buzzing and punk rock rendition.

Some choices are more eclectic and to great effect.

My hat goes off to The Shithawks for hitting the ball out of the park with the manic ‘She’s Like The Wind’ by Patrick Swayze.

Indeed some of the choices here I’ve not heard before, and my thanks to Catholic Action for introducing me to Emitt Rhodes, and hopefully some more people too with the cracking ‘Somebody Made For Me’.

A compilation should be well rounded, and here in this great mix of obscure and more known choices we get different styles of interpretations to others (see Tuff Love’s great lo-fi version of ‘Lovely Day’), but with the more straight up covers, of all the bands playing to their strengths, SHARPTOOTH’s brilliant Shangri-Las cover of ‘Remember Walkin’ In The Sand’ really does the song and themselves justice.

When you got the voices for it, this haunting and infectious tune is all yours: the building shimmering chords, the clicks and clatters over the grooving bass, the striking melancholy of the lyrics.

This album has a good and hearty selection of songs with something for everybody, a recommend listen for sure.

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Words: Matthew Thomas