Singles and downloads - March 2014
Paolo Nutini, Machinedrum, Golden Teacher and Paws reviewed
Paolo Nutini – 'Scream (Funk My Life Up)'
For the first ten seconds, the comeback single from Paisley’s favourite son is highly promising, with a vaguely South Asian convergence of atmospheric windchime sounds and squealing rap intro effects. But that’s the best bit – we’re soon into the territory of Give Out But Don’t Give Up-era Primal Scream B-sides, in which Paolo chugs out a game of rawk bingo (‘shotgun’, ‘hallelujah’, ‘gasoline’ rhymed with ‘smokin’ ma green’… house!) over a horn-encumbered slice of pub gospel.
Playing King Tut’s, Glasgow, Fri 28 Mar; Barrowlands, Glasgow, Sat 29 Mar.
Machinedrum – Fenris District EP
(Ninja Tune) ●●●●
Revisiting the imagined sonic landscape of his excellent concept LP Vapor City, American producer Travis Stewart here welcomes us to the seedy underbelly of the city, the red light area known as Fenris District. It’s well-evoked by the lead track ‘Back Seat Ho’, an insistent slice of rap beats and soaring, futurist D'n'B timings. There’s also a crunching remix of the same track by Rustie, the expansive arcade machine shuffle of ‘On My Mind’, ‘Neujack’s almost too persistent vocal cut-up and a dark dub remix of ‘Eyesdontlie’.
Golden Teacher – 'Party People' / 'Love'
(Optimo Music) ●●●●●
Swoons all round for Glasgow’s no-wave afro-disco shamans Golden Teacher, whose ability to do no wrong finds itself resolutely untested amidst this latest release on their perfect partner for life Optimo Music. First up is ‘Party People’, whose squelchy, hi-hat rattling debt to P-Funk is firmly stated when the reverb-soaked, Liquid Liquid-indebted vocal hollers ‘P-Funk!’. It’s not just that they’re good, but that they veer through styles with boundless confidence: ‘Love’ is a grinding electro rhythm which winds its way back through early-90s Berlin and Snake Plissken’s New York to meet Kraftwerk in their youth.
Playing Late Night Counterflows with Heatsick and Joe McPhee at the Art School, Glasgow, Sat 5 Apr.
Paws – 'Tongues'
A taster for their forthcoming second album Youth Culture Forever, Glasgow power trio PAWS (now featuring sometime writer of this parish Ryan Drever, following the departure of Matthew Scott) are back with a winning slice of Sonic Youth-style guitar chime, drum clatter and vocals which sound like they were recorded in the keg room under the bar of your local boozer. This is a good thing, believe it or not. It’s understated but air-punchingly lovely.