GoNorth, Rockness and Alive and Amplified Presents At The Leith Festival

I have finally recovered from a fantastic weekend up in Inverness at GoNorth and Rockness so I have decided to write a little round-up of the weekend.

I arrived in Inverness on Thursday morning and headed straight for the Ramada Jarvis Hotel where the GoNorth seminars were taking place. The first one I managed to catch was the DIY seminar which had Carrie Mac, Michael Lambert (The Debuts), John Robb (Goldblade) Neil Pennycook (Mearsault) and Steven Milne (The Little Kicks) speaking. This panel was aimed at informing bands how they can make their band work themselves, by releasing their own records booking their tours and basically running the band from inside the band.

After this i caught the management seminar featuring Keith Harris  (Stevie Wonder), Rab Andrew (Texas/Primal Scream), Dougie Souness (No Half Measures Management) and Grant Dickson (The View/Broken Records).

In the evening GoNorth took over the music venues of Inverness with a host of showcases from some of the best up and coming bands and artists from Scotland and around the world. My first port of call was Hootananny’s where Stanley Odd (www.myspace.com/stanleyodd) played a cracking 25 minute set from their debut album “Oddio” I was telling people all day to get along with this one and all of them told me they had a fantastic time. Next was upstairs to Mad Hatters where I saw Metaltech (www.myspace.com.metaltech), who put on a cracking show featuring glowsticks, dancing Vikings, a blow up doll and mainly a pounding set from these guys who look like a mash-up between Slipknot and Kiss but sound like a hybrid between Nine Inch Nails and something you have never heard before.

As I was at the bar the next band came on stage and instantly made me change my plan of heading of to another showcase. This band were Mothercoat from Japan (www.myspace.commothercoat). Never before have I been at a showcase gig where everyone in the crowd was instantly impressed by a performance and over the course of the weekend I would hear “Mothercoat” being used over and over again by people saying they were the highlight of the weekend. I was lucky enough to see them 3 times over the weekend and I would highly recommend going to see them if they are over in this neck of the woods again.

After some more GoNorth seminars and a boat trip on Friday it was time to head to the Rockness Festival. I had a fast hill climb to get to the Strongbow tent in time to see Any Color Black (www.myspace.com/anycolorblack)  making their major festival debut. When I arrived the tent was already bouncing to the electro beats and infectious guitar riffs. This Glasgow duo always deliver a cracking set and this was no different even if they had some pre match nerves. Check out a video of the gig here http://vimeo.com/12645318

 I was also delighted to have Any Color Black on the radio with Ian and myself last week, where they were scheduled in for a half hour chat an a couple of acoustic tracks however we all ended up having so much fun the interview went on for 50 minutes and featured 3 acoustic tracks and 3 tracks from “The Answer EP” (Available on iTunes…and all that Shhhhhhnanagins from 28th June) and a track from the “Touch Me EP” (available from iTunes now). Check out a live video of “Sex and Love” from the radio session here http://vimeo.com/12691016.

The band were in to promote the new EP and also their Alive & Amplified gig at the Leith Festival last Saturday night.  The night began with a few hiccups due to Caezium pulling out at the very last minute and I would like to personally thank Martin McGuigan for stepping in at the 11th hour and delivering a fantastically up beat and enjoyable set. He his definitely one you will be hearing about more on future Alive & Amplified events. After Martin, The Rigbys were on stage and really got the crowd going with their indie style songs and a cracking banter between band and crowd in between songs and guitar re-tunings. During one said re-tuning the guys burst into a impromptu version of the Ting Tings “That’s Not My Name” which really captured the fun and games of this Leith based band.  They will be on Leith FM (98.8fm and www.leithfm.co.uk/listen) with Ian this friday from 2pm – 4:30pm. Any Color Black then came on around 10:30pm, to a crowd who felt as if they were in an oven as The Granary overheated, and once again played an absolutely blinding set to which everyone, I spoke to, really enjoyed. If you fancy heading through to Glasgow this friday check out their EP launch at The Garage.

A big congratulations to everyone involved with the Leith Festival which continues to go from strength to strength year after year. The week consisted of a Gala days, a red Leith day, art, fashion, comedy and a huge amount of music. I am very much looking forward to next years festival already. although could they please not make the Gala day the same weekend as Rockness. This isn’t too much to ask surely.

If you are out and about this weekend in Edinburgh and fancy some live music for absolutely nowt get yourself down to Whistle Binkies on Sunday where a whole host of bands, including The Stagger Rats, Pose Victorious and The Laymanites, will be playing. Have a look at the line – up and stage times here http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?pid=4877618&id=93562651500

About aliveandamplified

Music Promoter, Blogger, Podcaster.
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