I was sitting reading the Sunday Herald's Top 50 Scottish albums of 2014 this morning and it got me to thinking about a band who will doubtless be on the list at the end of this year when their debut album is hopefully released. Atom Tree are a three piece from Glasgow and are the brainchild of the very talented Shaun Canning. Originally starting off as a solo project of Shaun's on Soundcloud, the band expanded in 2013 with the addition of percussionist Michael Robertson, and then the jigsaw was completed in 2014 with the beguiling vocals of Julie Knox being added to the mix. I first saw the band in Glasgow's Merchant City during last year's Commonwealth celebrations and instantly thought of Sigur Ros, which is meant as a huge compliment to the Glasgow synth trio. There were also, to these ears, echoes of Bowie's Berlin years, a touch of Eno, a bit of Nico, and even a nod to Glasgow's very own Blue Nile in parts, whilst, at all times, sounding unmistakably like Atom Tree.
To date the band have released two critically acclaimed EP's, 2013's Tide Of Thorns and last year's Clouds, which was a huge leap forward for the band with Julie's vocals now an integral part of the group's sound. There is an almost cinematic quality to their music, and it would be no great surprise if a film soundtrack did not form part of their recordings in the foreseeable future. Glasgow for many years has been a musical smorgasbord of talent and Atom Tree are the latest in a long line of great bands to emerge from Scotland's very own UNESCO City of Music. Less is more seems to the credo for the band with a minimalist approach to Canning's soundscapes that gels perfectly with the stark percussion, and the warm, haunting vocals of their new singer. The band have already made their mark at festivals like T In The Park and Wickerman, but 2015 is shaping up to be their best year yet with the forthcoming release of one of the year's most anticipated albums. This is a band that deserves your attention in 2015.