There is a very good reason why Glasgow was named UNESCO City of Music in August 2008. From Postcard Records onwards Glasgow has (probably) got the most vibrant music scene in the UK.
I was looking at a list of venues in Glasgow recently for a gig to go to and was blown away by the amount of places for bands to play. From smaller venues such as Stereo, through to venues like Oran Mor and The ABC, and then up to your less intimate venues like The SECC. Compared to Edinburgh it is literally bursting with great venues. And great bands to play in them. For every household name there is a corresponding unsung hero and none more so than Stephen McRobbie.
The first time I heard The Pastels was back in '85 with "I'm Alright With You" which has stood the test of time really well. Over the next couple of years they released a few singles, the highlight for me being the wonderful, "Truck Train Tractor" as well as '87's unique, inspiring album "Up For A Bit".
For the last 20 years or so the line up has revolved around Stephen and Katrina Mitchell with contributions from the likes of Gerard Love, Norman Blake and Alison Mitchell. I thought that The Blue Nile took forever between albums but even for them 16 years would be a bit much. That was how long it took, however, for The Pastels latest release although it was well worth the wait for this year's simply beautiful "Slow Summits".
Revered by the likes of Teenage Fanclub, Sonic Youth, The JAMC and Kurt Cobain, The Pastels are one of the most enduring and inspirational Glasgow bands of the last 30 years and are beloved by many discerning music fans for very good reason.
Let's hope there is not so long to wait for the next offering from Mr McRobbie and co....
Nothing To Be Done