Scoville Units Unite

01 Jan

2019 In Music

Time for the almost annual and almost end of the year look back at music after 2018, 2017 and 2016.


Book Yer Ane Fest 2019 happened in a much smaller venue due to Abertay Union continuing to be a joke. Can’t organise a student pub. There were a ton of local gigs, with far fewer I was able to attend than I hoped. Savage Mansion were pretty cool. Tim Loud was awesome as ever. Get It Together had their LP launch gig. Poverty Bar and Min Diesel played an amazing gig. Kaddish played at least 3 times in Dundee, somehow. Queequeg’s Coffin launched their EP alongside Rag n Bone Man. Missed Fresh play, again, which was a bit gutting.

New Releases

Photo of top Instagram posts of 2019

I had the season tickets for Make That a Take and Specialist Subject again, and would heartily encourage anyone else to do so too.

This Way Up in Dundee were a source of a lot of new releases but they sadly closed the same month that Assai moved into the city centre. With a great range of weird and experimental music they are fast becoming a necessary visit when in the area. Grouchos is still the best second hand store in town although sadly Breeks died this year. Le Freak Records have been going through a massive collection from a DJ too which includes a huge amount of hip hop I’m working my way through.


Adult Magic – Adult Magic – great wee punk album via SSR.
American Football – American Football – LP3 from the most original album namers in history.
Asian Dub Foundation – Rafi’s Revenge – Great re-release of one of the best UK hip hop albums.
Bad Sleep – Self Titled – Every year there’s one release on Specialist I’m not sold on and this was it. Not for me.
Billy Bragg – Best Of Billy Bragg At The BBC 1983 – 2019 – pretty good compilation of live sessions.
British Sea Power – Disco Elysium OST – the atmospheric soundtrack to the surprisingly good game of the year.
Broken Social Scene – Let’s Try The After Vol 1&2 – Annoying way to collect these via Record Store Day but brilliant as ever.
Common – Let Love – Never a step wrong from Common. Well worth a listen.
De La Soul – 3 Feet High And Rising – VMP repress of the classic debut.
De La Soul – De La Soul Is Dead – VMP pressing of the great album by hip hop legends.
DJ Shadow – Our Pathetic Age – Fantastic new release from artist who always releases gems.
DOOM – Born Like This – Still can’t believe I ignored this artist for so long.
Experience Unlimited – Free Yourself – Another funk album which often came up in ‘crazy cover’ type lists which VMP repressed.
Flying Lotus – Flamagra – Jazzy hip hop release in a bizarre special edition release
Fresh – Withdraw – probably one of my favourite albums of the year – punk/emo on Specialist Subject Records.
Fun Lovin’ Criminals – Another Mimosa – Not bad for band going 25 years on from their one wonder hit.
Gang Starr – Step In The Arena – when an absolute classic gets re-released after almost 30 years and still sounds as fresh as ever.
Garden Centre – A Moon For Digging – pretty great weird pop indie from SSR.
Get It Together – Live Free – the best kind of hardcore that central Scotland can produce. Pure braw.
The Go! Team – Thunder, Lightning, Strike – Fifteen year anniversary release of the classic album. Strange how time has dilated and so many albums this year had 15/20/25 year anniversaries. Especially when some just came out a decade ago in the 90s…
Hovvdy – Heavy LIfter – Another great indie release from Specialist Subject.
Idlewild – Interview Music – After the last couple I was surprised just how good this album is. Obviously no Hope Is Important but far surpasses the other recent releases.
The Jam – Snap! – rerelease of the compilation that comes with the original 7″ which shipped too.
Jimmy Eat World – Surviving – pretty good 10th album, although nothing majorly stands out.
Jeffrey Lewis & The Voltage – Bad Wiring – Always been a fan of his live shows and this latest LP is a good effort for Mr AntiFolk.
Billy Liar – Some Legacy – Pretty strange hearing all these tracks together after hearing most of them live over the past few years.
Misfortune Cookie – Heavy Seas – Hadn’t seen these awesome folks til they headlined one of the days stages at BYAF. I had however seen most of them in other bands. All of which were as awesome as them. Pick up the album, it’s gorgeous and you won’t regret it.
The Murderburgers – What A Mess – turned out to be the final release from Fraser and his interchangeable ensemble of pals. RIP Murderburgers :(. Their final set was at Book Yer Ane Fest though so at least I saw them one last time before they called it a day.
Nat Turner Rebellion – Laugh To Keep From Crying – amazing release with an incredible story behind it. A total disappointment the direction Vinyl Me Please took not long afterwards.
Pixies – Beneath The Eyrie – Another surprisingly good release from a band that’s been going forever.
Please, Believe! – .​.​.​In Potential – They finally released a physical version early this year. Ecossemo. Get on it.
Queens Of The Stone Age – Songs For The Deaf – A much needed repress finally appeared of this impossible to find album on vinyl.
Thee Rag N Bone Man* – The Buckfast Holocaust – noisy one Man punk band.
The Roots – Things Fall Apart – 20th anniversary release of one of the best hip hop albums of all time.
The Roots ‎– The Tipping Point – 15th Anniversary re-release of their sixth album too.
Pharoah Sanders / John Hicks / Curtis Lundy / Idris Muhammed – Africa – another cracking jazz release from This Way Up.
Savage Mansion – Revision Ballads – pretty good alt-rock release on Lost Map.
Shhe – Shhe – Beautiful experimental album by localish Shhe.
Slingshot Dakota – Heavy Banding – And again, quit it SSR, you’re shaming fowk now.
The Specials – Encore – I was more impressed by this than I thought I would be.
Mark Stewart + Maffia – Learning To Cope With Cowardice / The Lost Tapes – Pretty weird industrial noise.
Scott Wainwright – Sentimental Debris – pretty great blues album by someone I had never seen until he played with Tim Loud.
Witching Waves – Persistence – It was disappointing to have a second meh-ish Specialist album but hey ho.
Woahnows – Young And Cool – pretty good noisy indie

Various – Congo Revolution (Revolutionary And Evolutionary Sounds From The Two Congos 1955-62) – another obscure collection of mid-century jazz which doubtless few people here heard at the time.
Various – Dae Yer Ane Sampler III – Everything that’s came out on MTAT in the last wee while.
Various – The Daisy Age – pretty great compilation of some early conscious hip hop.
Various – If You’re Not Part Of The Solution… (Soul, Politics And Spirituality In Jazz 1967 To 1975) – Pretty great Jazz release from Soul Jazz Records. Amazing how few of their releases have been misses.
Various – Space Funk (Afro Futurist Electro Funk In Space 1976-84) – Got a lot fewer Soul Jazz records this year with This Way Up closing. This was a strange release. Not sure if I’d recommend it but it’s certainly different.
Various – Tiny Changes: A Celebration Of Frightened Rabbit’s ‘The Midnight Organ Fight’ – Originally planned for the tenth anniversary of the albums release, it was delayed after Scott died. Some great interpretations of the tracks on it.

EPs and other stuff

The Cairngorms Young Team – Straight To Video – time for an electronic/chip tunes styl affair then.
The Cairngorms Young Team – Car Wash Variations 1 – Love Dies Here – trying his hand at experimental electronic goodness this time.
The Cairngorms Young Team – Black Market Organs – Minimalist versions of some of the work released by him.
Fresh – Cinema Woes – Fresh should stop being this awesome it’s not fair on other bands 🙂
Poverty Bar – Girl Everything / Hungarian Blues – another small limited run split from Poverty Bar.
Queequeg’s Coffin – Daddy – genre busting duo of roasters bringing more noise than your normal four piece.
Seas, Starry – Spooky Witch – Spooooooky Halloween tunes from the Aberdonian post-rock crew.
Shhe – Eyes Shut – first release I heard by Shhe.
Soot Sprite – Sharp Tongue – Another fine indie/punk release from Specialist Subject.
The Specials – 10 Commandments / You’re Wondering Now – 7″ from RSD featuring Saffiyah Khan.
Stöj Snak / Speed Dinosaurs – The Mass Extinction Split – new split 7″ which follows on in style from Screamer Songwriter
Spoke Too Soon – Your Own Creation – pretty cool emo record from a band I found at BYAF.
Too Slow / Min Diesel – Split 7″ – small release indie/punk split 7s are a classic of the genre. Worth getting if you can find it.

Various – Boombox 45 (Early Independent Hip Hop, Electro And Disco Rap 1979-82) – Soul Jazz knocking it out the park again with this collection of early hip hop singles.

Music still in the ‘to listen’ pile

It’s been tough keeping up with what I’ve got this year and tons still hasn’t been listened to yet.
Gang Starr – One Of The Best Yet – gave this a quick listen when it was first online and it was great. On my second physical copy, neither of which plays right on my set up but do on others. Guess I need to spend some time figuring out what is wrong.
Aidan Moffat & RM Hubbert – Cut To Black

Other Music I discovered

I normally do a list of older stuff I found, but I got a wee bit more than usual including massive amounts of hip hop from Le Freak and a huge emo/hardcore collection from Grouchos. So lets skip that…


Carried on submitting and editing tons on Discogs. I got copies of Great Scots Musicography and Rip It Up to help with sourcing info too.

Music goals for 2019

Sort out my CD singles. I need to rip as MP3, sort them out and then clear out the unwanted/duplicates. – barely scratched the surface.
Sort through CD Album collection. This is all ripped now but a large part is unsorted. I need to sort, sell off and pack up the bulk of it. – most packed up, but not sorted.
Finish listening to and sorting my 7″s. – made a slight dent in before I bought more 12s…
In 2018 I finished off a couple of artists collections so I will probably identify a couple more and try to find the missing pieces of their catalogue over the course of the year. – tried to finish off Motormark but one was hard to find, and one got lost in the French postal system for months.

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