Thursday, January 31, 2008

Findo Gask

What makes a new band stand out? In an increasingly difficult marketplace, it must be hard, because often our decisions are made before we even listen to bands. A bad name, for instance can put people right off. I know it can put me off. I’ve no plans to listen to Royworld for instance, unless someone can convince me they’re totally ace. On the other hand I have overcome some prejudices lately to appreciate songs by Broadcast 2000, Glasvegas and Antarctica Takes It!.

A name can be crucial, particularly when these are often just glimpsed on pieces of paper or computer screens. Every week I scan the new release list from Rough Trade to see what’s out. Obviously there are a lot of bands on there I’ve never heard of, and I just don’t have the time to click on all the links to read the blurbs (most of which have been penned by PRs and not the shop staff it seems). The other week however, I was struck by one band’s name – Findo Gask.

It’s not because it’s a particularly great name, it’s more because there’s a real childhood resonance with me. For many years, family holidays were in my mum’s native Moray area of North East Scotland, and all journeys there went via Perth. A few miles before Perth on the A9 there was a sign pointing off to a place called Findo Gask. For some reason it always intrigued me and this intrigue was probably accentuated by us never actually going there. It wasn’t on the road I guess – so near yet so far.

Not having made that journey for many years, the name had long slipped out of my consciousness until I saw it crop up in the Rough Trade new releases list at the start of the year. No matter what they sounded like, even if they were emo, I still had to hear Findo Gask. And what transpired was better than I dared hope for. Findo Gask – who are a Glasgow-based outfit consisting of four blokes called Gerard, Michael, Gregory and Gavin – play a very agreeable type of guitar-based electro-pop, which somehow surpasses the more juvenile Camden/ East London version as well as anything I’ve heard off the new Hot Chip album. The fact that they’re signed to Optimo’s Oscarr record label is surely a sign of hipster credentials, so expect some sort of hype to begin circulating soon. I know little else them, mainly just that they’ve produced some very decent tunes. Enjoy a couple of these.

Download: Findo Gask – Va Va Va
Downalod: Findo Gask – Go Aquatic

Buy the Va-Va-Va 12 inch from Rough Trade. There's a FREE disco mix of Va-Va-Va at the Oscarr site.


Anonymous said...

You're right about a name being important. It took me until this week to bother listening to a group with a name as strange as Vampire Weekend. I am glad that I did.

Anonymous said...

can u re-upload these songs plz?

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