Tag Archives: Scottish Music

Antidote by Amy Duncan, An album for our times.

Sometimes an album appears at just the right time. Antidote, the sixth album from Amy Duncan is just such a collection. Primarily a group of songs about a personal battle with adversity, the lyrics here contain metaphors and images which chime perfectly with the fears and anxieties that today’s increasingly uncertain world generates in us all.

‘Steady the Bow’ sets the tone perfectly for what is to follow, Amy Duncan’s voice appears immediately, the accompanying instruments perfectly reflecting the mood of the lyrics as the song ebbs and flows.  ‘The Journey’ is mesmerising, from the opening sound of birdsong until the singer alights from her journey, voice and instruments blending flawlessly. Sounds recorded on the streets of Edinburgh are used throughout the album and the effects are startling, the sonic landscape being increased exponentially.  If the opening line on ‘Severed Head’ seems childlike, the grisly follow up will certainly grab your attention.  It’s something that happens frequently, you never really know just where Amy Duncan is going to take us.

There is darkness but it is more than countered by the frequent signposts towards the light and this is what makes this such a satisfying album to listen to.  It ends with the title track and it leaves you in no doubt that there is always hope, the vivid image of green pushing up through the gaps in the concrete sure to linger long in the mind.

The honesty of the lyrics and the accomplished delivery of the songs marks this album out as something rather special. The beautifully ethereal atmosphere wraps around you like a comfort blanket as Amy Duncan tackles universal real world emotional issues.   The perfect Antidote? It’s certainly close.

You can buy Antidote here.

To find out more visit Amy Duncan’s website here.

Or visit her Facebook page.

Or if Twitter is your thing click here. 

Wotjek the Bear – New EP Second Nature

It would be hard not to fall in love with Glasgow four piece Wojtek the Bear after listening to their recently released EP Second Nature. Named after the famous World War 2 soldier bear there is nothing grizzly about this band. Their melodic shimmering sound coupled with some wonderfully perceptive lyrics makes for an instantly addictive indie-pop cocktail.

The opening track ‘Trivial Pursuit’ is the pick of this strong quartet of songs. As lead singer Tam Killean bemoans the mistakes made by his younger self against a jangly musical backdrop many listeners  will recognise the sense of regret that can strike us all as we realise that at some point we really do have to grow up.  Second track, ‘Badge of Honour’ makes some telling points about the peculiar relationship that we Scots have with alcohol. We knows it’s not big and it’s not clever yet when it comes to booze there is barely concealed admiration for the last man standing.  There is a nice lightness of touch about things here though. On ‘Bookcase’ we’re told that the singer’s heart is in the right place, ‘just to the left behind my ribs.’

Second Nature’s mix of witty, often wistful lyrics and mood capturing melodies offers a welcome chance to enjoy the warmth of shared experiences.  It really is too good an offer to refuse.

Second Nature is available now on itunes, Deezer and Spotify.

You can like the band a lot on Facebook.

Follow their twittery updates here.

And watch the rather superb video for Trivial Pursuit below.