Your own musical highlight of the year?
A: Finishing the debut E.P. Playing again as The Candy Store Prophets, an event, which, as Graeme points out, no-one saw coming. Including myself though I had thought about it a few times. A fantasy turned into a reality.
G: None spring to mind as I type this.
Favourite performance of the year?
A: Oh, performance as in the singular? No can do as there are several favourites for a number of reasons.
As a duo I really enjoyed the Drouthy’s show in February as it was quite intimate. Both our shows at The Cool Cat Club in July and September were quite good fun and it’s nice to play gigs with bands you really love and get on with (Edinburgh School for the Deaf, Vladimir, Playground Tactics).
The show we did for Oxjam in my house In October was pretty amazing. Really, really intimate. To play a set with The Candy Store Prophets was amazing. I felt really proud of the songs and my band mates and a bit sad we hadn’t done it before then. I’m not sure if it will happen again but I hope so.
The penultimate Hookers for Jesus show on 14th December was amazing. We played as a quartet and a few people did express quiet fears that we might just end up sounding like any other band with bass and additional guitar. I did have a few worries along those lines but the reality was pretty different. It gave us the space to do something a bit different with the songs and performance and I found it pretty exhilarating and a bit liberating as well. Though that may have been the facepaint.
G: Dunno, probably one of the Oxjam gigs
What’s the one thing that went wrong in 2012 you’d like to fix?
G: Public transport being non-existent on the day we’ve been asked to play out of town. That’s the missing gig of 2012, which fits in with the hidden bonus track we keep dropping from gigs.
A: Probably the same thing that goes wrong every year. My inability to not have several things on the boil at once and my continuing anxiety that people think we are an elaborate hoax. I want to spend a bit more time doing Hookers, to actually see through some of the ideas and concepts that we have and to play more shows.
What you gonna be doing next year?
G: Put out the Hookers ep, all going well, and write new songs.
A: Get the e.p. out and get out and about live more often. Write a whole bunch of new songs and record a second e.p.
3 songs or LPs you’ve listened to the most in 2012?
A: That I’m not sure. Probably a compilation album, C’est Chic! French Girl Singers of the 1960, which always cheers me up immensely. I’ve been listening to a lot of French 60s stuff in the last year or so and playing it when I D.J. and this album is probably the perfect introduction so I’d recommend it highly. 60s girl groups in general, particularly the Girls With Guitars and Destroy That Boy
More recent stuff I’ve listened to a lot this year includes S.C.U.M. Again Into Eyes, the Toy album. First Aid Kit The Lion’s Roar surprised me a lot. I’m a bit wary of good reviews. Former Green On Red Dan Stuart and his solo album The Deliverance of Marlowe Billings is awesome. RM Hubbert Thirteen Lost and Found is a rather special record. Rodelius Schneider’s Stunden is a great instrumental electronic album, Melody’s Echo Chamber is pretty addictive. Also, a special mention for The Creeping Ivies Stay Wild debut which is a cracking album.
G: Not exactly the ones I’ve listened to the most as there is quite a lot of songs I’ve listened to an equal amount but, as you ask, I give you a song, an ep and an album.
Pete Fij & Terry Bickers – “I don’t give a shit about you”
NeonBunny – “Happy Ending”
Lang Lee – “yon yonson” ( album )
Best gig attended?
A: Everything I’ve put on this year. Sorry. That’s not being bigheaded, I don’t put on shows that I wouldn’t attend or pay to see myself.
Outside of that, Dexys at the Queens Hall. Pure theatre, great songs and an element of madness. S.C.U.M. at the Caird Hall. Bill Wells and Aidan Moffat in the Arches at the start of the year and at the DCA at the end of the year. RM Hubbert, Django Django, The Cosmic Dead. Too many to mention yet I didn’t go to as many gigs as I’d like to.
G: I was going to say the Viv Albertine one in Dundee, but google tells me that was 2011, so I’ll just go with the final secret gig for the Oxjam events.
Biggest surprise of 2012?
G: The Candy Store Prophets being in the same room at the same time playing a gig. I didn’t see that one coming.No-one did.
A: I survived it with my sanity just about intact.
Biggest letdown of 2012?
A: I survived it with my sanity just about intact.
G: exist†trace not playing a UK Gig, same letdown as every year since 2010 until they return to these shores.
Anything and everything
Event of 2012
A: The vindication of the families of the victims of the Hillsborough disaster and their exemplary campaign and the hope that real justice will be done now. That this may encourage people to realise that, no matter how hopeless things seem, it is always worth fighting on.
G: That happened on the 14th December at The Cool Cat Club …
Lowpoint of 2012
A: That the children of Thatcher and the neo-liberal dark horsemen are still at large and in power and loudly proclaiming through their chums in the media that their way is the only way despite overwhelming evidence to the contrary. The fact that some of their media chums may just see a prison cell cheers me up immensely and I’m not a particularly vindictive kind of fellow.
Hero of 2012
A: Jim Swires. Despite the terrible loss of his daughter in the Lockerbie bombing he continues to question given ‘truths’ surrounding the matter in an intelligent, articulate and clear minded manner, continually rebuffing attempts by right-wing American so-called representatives of the victims of the bombing to pervert a tragedy to their own ends.
G: I try not to have heroes, they will only disappoint you in the end.
Villain of 2012
A: Where to start?
G: My villains are useless, need to get decent ones shipped in if we are to be defined by our villains …
Favourite place of 2012
A: Marina Grande, Sorrento
G: Courtauld Gallery.
Favourite book of 2012
A: Only one choice? Okay, If I had to recommend only one book that I read this year it would have to be Nicholas Shaxson’s Treasure Islands. Tax Havens and the Men Who Stole The World. For a book about finance and economics it’s a rip roaring read and fantastic stuff.
G: ‘KLF: Chaos Magic Music Money’ by JMR Higgs
Favourite film of 2012
A: I haven’t been to the cinema much this year. Possibly The Snows of Kilimanjaro which was very sweet, human and wise. I saw it by accident.
G: I’ve not seen any films released in the cinema in 2012, and missed the few I did want to go see. Will watch 2012 films in 2013 or 2014.
Something to look forward to in 2013?
A: The return of My Bloody Valentine although I won’t believe there is a new album until I actually hold a physical copy in my grubby mitts. The gig ticket is, however, purchased.
G: Sorry, no spoilers for 2013.