I'm the sort of person who really likes music, but who doesn't really care a lot about bands. My friends (who are in a very good band called My God Micah) must get exasperated with me because I never know who sings any song and am totally clueless about which bands play what shows where.
So I was surprised when I began to take special notice of a couple of CDs my friend Matthew would play a lot; it seemed whenever I asked "what band is this?," he would say a name and follow it by "they're from Scotland." This was how I came to check out the albums These Four Walls by We Were Promised Jetpacks and Sigh No More by Mumford & Sons (later I found out the latter is from London, but nevertheless, I was intrigued). It occurred to me that I liked Franz Ferdinand and Belle and Sebastian as much as the next person, two Glasgow stalwarts that made it big in America thanks to iPod commericals ("Take Me Out" and "No You Girls" by Franz Ferdinand) and the Juno soundtrack ("Piazza, New York Catcher" and "Expectations" by Belle and Sebastian). What other great music, I wondered, might Scotland be producing?
Right about this time, I embarked upon a home improvement project. In order to successfully paint the trim in three rooms without going completely crazy with boredom, I would require many hours of interesting music. It seemed to be the perfect time to check out any other Scottish rock bands lurking in the collections of the Denver Public Library. Fortunately, the media collection at my branch, Ross-Broadway, is excellent, and even with the holds moratorium, I was able to go home with 5 CDs of Scottish rock bands I'd never heard of. I genuinely enjoyed listening to all of them.
My favorite discovery of all is the folk/pop sound of Teenage Fanclub. Their album, Shadows, sounds sort of like the Beatles singing Sheryl Crow songs, but better. I laughed out loud to the quirky lyrics of Midnight Organ Fight by Frightened Rabbit, and found myself humming along to the catchy tunes on Ode to J. Smith by Travis.
So, laddies and lassies, think beyond the pipes and drums. There's some great rock music coming from the land of Loch Ness. Do you know of any good ones?
DPL has albums by the following Scottish rock bands:
- Bay City Rollers
- Belle and Sebastian
- Codeine Velvet Club
- Franz Ferdinand
- Frightened Rabbit
- Primal Scream
- Teenage Fanclub
- Twilight Sad
- We Were Promised Jetpacks