Talking Jazz & Politics With Carsie Blanton

Carsie Blanton’s music is an exuberant mix of folk, jazz, swing and pop. Her enthusiasm for pretty much anything (except for Trump, fascists, and sexual shame) is infectious, her grin unforgettable.   I first came across Carsie’s joyful sound as a swing dancer, where her song ‘Baby Can Dance’ was very popular. Carsie ran a swing dance in... Continue Reading →

Save The Senate

Save the Senate Festival began with Resistance Revival Chorus, a collective of women and non-binary singers who take the Toi Derricotte quote “joy is an act of resistance” to heart. They open with ‘Ella’s Song’, a beautifully simple chant laid over photographs and videos of Black Lives Matter protests and actions. “We who believe in... Continue Reading →

Thoughts on A Fairytale

Like many of us, my favourite Christmas song is ‘Fairytale of New York’ by The Pogues. From the very first lines its sentimentality is grounded in a hard realism, “It was Christmas Eve babe / In the drunk tank / An old man said to me, won't see another one / And then he sang... Continue Reading →

WayWORD Festival: Art is Activism

The WayWORD Festival, a student-led creative arts festival run by the WORD Centre at the University of Aberdeen is without a doubt, summed up with the expression “maximum effort, maximum reward,” in terms of the time and energy it took to get it all together, and the obstacles we overcame. The tagline we chose, “unconventional... Continue Reading →

Failure is Inevitable: Spray

Stars: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ All the way through lockdown, I’ve been listening to the album Failure is Inevitable by synth-pop duo Spray. The band consists of siblings Jenny Mclaren and Ricardo Autobahn. They’ve been my favourite band for a couple of years, I even own one of their T-shirts which currently for sale on Bandcamp. Below I... Continue Reading →

On A Rooftop Overlooking The Tay…

A secretive new collective has sprung up! The Underground Rooftop Collective (or URCollective) held their first performance this autumn in a secret location in Dundee city centre - performing to an audience of none in line with the Covid-19 restrictions. On a rooftop overlooking the Tay, Katherine Allan & Haig Massie, Cheryl McGregor, Chloé Segall,... Continue Reading →

Taylor Swift’s Folklore

“And just like a folksong our love will be passed on,” sings Taylor Swift on the song ‘seven’ on her new album Folklore. This is an album of love stories, but not necessarily Swift’s. There’s a rumour that some of the tracks tell the tale of a doomed teenage love affair. It’s certainly a confusing... Continue Reading →

A Perfect Pre-Drinks Album

The cover art of Dua Lipa’s new album Future Nostalgia is evocative of the Art Deco painting ‘Autoportrait (Tamara in a Green Bugatti)’ by Tamara de Lempicka from 1929, originally commissioned to celebrate female independence and empowerment. As Lipa sits behind the wheel of a retro car she looks cool and in control. And it’s... Continue Reading →

Don’t Go To The Cookout

I’ll set the scene: It’s March 27th 2020; Covid-19 has pushed the world into lockdown; Tarriona “Tank” Ball records a Tiny Desk Concert in her living room; George Floyd has not yet been murdered. Fast forward to now: It’s June 27th 2020; the UK is still in lockdown; I stumble across Tank’s Tiny Desk Concert... Continue Reading →

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