With some live shows starting to be announced, we look at five acts to look out for in Scotland!
In 2017 , I went through a super bad breakup so I started going to a lot more of the local gigs I kept putting off going to , even if it meant going alone to venues all across Scotland , I went. In doing so though I stumbled across a whole plethora of grassroots and local artists , the majority of which I still love to this day.
This list , believe me , could have been 50some long but here’s just 5 of some of the best up and coming artists from Scotland that I love and that you should listen to.
1. Zoe Graham
Firstly this Glasgow based singer songwriter is truly spectacular live , I saw her support Fatherson in Edinburgh’s finest venue Sneaky Petes and I remember being completely awestruck by her set and I’ve followed her career ever since.
That career has included a long stream of cracking single after cracking single , her latest being “Know By Now” a beautiful wee package of glistening bedroom indie pop that makes you feel like you’re the protagonist in a coming of age movie! It’s simply divine.
2. Paris Street Rebels
In recent years punk has been one of Scotland’s best musical exports giving us bands like Baby Strange , Rascalton and The Dunts – for me the newest exports who everyone should have their eyes and ears around are the Paris Street Rebels
Again this band are truly electric live and I’ve followed them and watched them play all over the country – they channel the true working class ethos and character of punk of yesteryear – not just the fashion – in doing so they tackle the difficult and very real mental health epidemic that effects our country and hit it on the nose as blunt as they can . They are one of the few bands that I find myself getting goosebumps and have a wee tear in my eye every time I see them live.
Another band that I’ve seen live from early on in their career that are now really starting to blow up and get well deserved traction is Sunstinger – if you like your shoe gaze anthems for your sad boy hour then Sunstinger is who is missing on your playlist.
For me , they sound like The Stone Roses and The Jesus and Mary Chain had a beautiful musical love child. Their track “She Stole My Sky “ was one of my favourite tracks of 2019 and the video that accompanies it is stunning too
If there’s an up and coming Scottish band that truly has my heart , it’s Foreignfox. I grew up in a town called Dunfermline and for a town it’s size the music scene over the decades has exploded . On of my picks of many of those amazing bands is Foreignfox. They have that gritty guitar driven indie rock sound that just sounds so much better with a scottish accent in the mix.
I’ve followed this band for years and their sophomore record “I Used To Be A Bellydancer” is constantly spinning on my record player. The EP’s title track explores the life of an asylum seeker and the need for safety without forgetting your true beautiful origin . The track is poignantly beautiful , especially right now , and deserves a listen. Their live show is electric and erratic – a proper “scream along to every single word at the top of your lungs” band.
5. Swim School
Another band that truly has my heart is Swim School , like the other bands on this list I have seen this band many many times and again they do not disappoint. Their debut single “Sway” was the soundtrack of my summer last year and was the backing track to many road trips to the west coast of Scotland.
Their career though short has been jam packed filled with support slots with the likes of The Xcerts and festival appearances at Scotlands TRNSMT , Belladrum, and XPONorth. Their sound is ever evolving though and I really love that about them with every single they mature a little – their current sound has hints of The Cure and Pale Waves and I absolutely adore it.
Words by Amy-Louise Rogers