German Shepherd Newsletter #5 – Catching a Colourful Disease

Hello and welcome to another edition of the German Shepherd Newsletter…

This week

– Moff and Moet are back as The Colourful Disease
– Forthcoming Gigs
– What’s in the pipeline

CATCHING A COLOURFUL DISEASE

Moff Skellington and Ian “Moet” Moss have worked together for over three years now with releases as

Ion-Morph & Moff Skellington – Boomerangs/Body Bad
Moss Skellington – The Wickedest Man In The World
Moss Skellington – The Lump

…as well a series of live events branded as “Smoked Ears Will Not Grow Back”.

Check out the previous releases on our Bandcamp Page.

They have decided to work together under a new name The Colourful Disease.

We release a new five-track EP from the duo on June 29th called “Economics”.

Blending Moff’s unique musical stylings and Moet’s trade-mark polemic with subjects varying between Kiplingesque anecdotes, Brexit, and a reprise of previous track “The Lump” in the form of a “Carbuncle” the pair explore hitherto unfound musical nooks and crannies.

Writing about the album Moss, tongue in cheek, says:

The Colourful Disease, a sexy trans-Pennine boy band , a duo in the manner of Wham with hip shakingly catchy tunes that sound like everything else , lyrics of total banality they are content to trade on their cute good looks and ability to strike glamorous poses they could be this year’s bright new things decorating the bedroom walls of the nation’s teens, superstardom surely awaits bad boy Moff and boy next door Ian.

Ian Moss – Voice and Words
Moff Skellington – Instruments and Music
Uncle Ian – Banjo on “Dance”

The Colourful Disease_Economics

With Cover Art by Moff Skellington this release is a Uterus Cottage Production

You can stream track 5 from the release “Dance” here:

 

FORTHCOMING GIGS

We have added a couple of new gigs to our guide with a notable pre-Xmas gig at the Peer Hat, Manchester on December 8th with Boz Hayward, Poppycock and Keltrix.

There are only 9 early bird tickets for this Saturday’s Summer All Day Spectacular – grab one now via the link at the top of the page  at the reduced price of £7.50

21st June – Bouquet of Dead Crows play Bedford Esquires
22nd June – Inferior Complex play The Railway, Winchester
23rd June – Manchester Meltdown Summer All Day Special
30th June – The Scissors play Knackfest, Karma Farm, Isleham Fen
6th July – Inferior Complex play The Shooting Star, Southampton
7th July – Toska Wilde plays SAKS, Southend on Sea as part of Cult 13
14th July – Drink and Drive and The Strays play Whittles, Oldham with Little Avis
17th July – Scissors supporting KOLARS at The Portland Arms Cambridge
21st July – Mesmer Disciples play Alston Festival
26th July – Pearl Divers play Jimmy’s, Manchester
27th July – Bouquet of Dead Crows play Mama Liz’s Voodoo Lounge in Stamford
28th July – Drink and Drive play Peer Hat, Manchester
28th July – Bouquet of Dead Crows play Pim Jam Festival, Haverhill
15th September – The Scissors and Charlie Marshall play The Cornerhouse, Cambridge
15th September – Mesmer Disciples play Music Lounge, Stockton on Tees
15th September – Drink and Drive play Agueda, Portugal
16th September – Mesmer Disciples play Museum Vaults Sunderland.
21st September – Four Candles, Poppycock and Charlie Marshall play The Peer Hat, Manchester
8th December – Boz Hayward, Poppycock and Ketrix play The Peer Hat, Manchester
22nd December – Drink and Drive play Strummercamp Fundraiser and Oldham Rugby Club

IN THE PIPELINE

Future releases in the schedule

06/07/2018 Auster Boys – With Moet : Unnatural Appetites (Album)
13/07/2018 m.t. scott – When The Lamb Become Lame (Album)
20/07/2018 Mesmer Disciples -Real Loud (Single)
27/07/2018 Four Candles -You Can’t Be What You Pretend/Basket Weaving (Single)

We are also anticipating

-new albums from The Junta, Bouquet of Dead Crows, and The Screaming Love Collective
– new EPs from Toska Wilde and The Scissors
– and a new various artists compilation in the Cambridge Calling range

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Loop-aznavour and The Junta release new material

Following the release of the joint single a few weeks ago Loop-aznavour and The Junta have separate releases out this week…..

These are digital only releases available from Bandcamp, Spotify, I-Tunes and many other digital outlets

loop
Loop-aznavour
DL1_02
The Junta

CD issue of Pearl Divers Debut EP now available from our Bandcamp Pages

A limited edition run of 50 copies of Pearl Divers debut EP  “The Past Ain’t Made To Last” in CD format is now available on the German Shepherd Bandcamp page.

Containing live favourites Sunshine, Smoking Gun and Waterfall, this is a stunning debut which we recently re-released in digital format.

In keeping with our DIY ethos each order will be personally posted out by the band.

Forthcoming gigs for Pearl Divers

16th June – Another Fine Festival, Amigos Stage Ulverston (on stage approx 6pm)

26th July – Jimmy’s Bar, Manchester

PD CD 1

 

Keltrix return with “Long Long Way” Single in two versions

Anticipating the release of a new album “Naked”, Keltrix are back and are releasing a new single “Long Long Way” on May 11th, a track which links back to their last album release “Bobby Says”.

The last album was predominantly electronic dance-oriented in keeping with their new sonic direction the band has developed over the last few years. However, the forthcoming album strips back their sound to its folk roots with just voice, guitar and violin delivering acoustic versions of the bands “Greatest Hits” together with a handful of brand new songs.

Keri and Sharon have rightly received praise for their unique blending of traditional music with modern electronica/dance but it is time to step back and chill and reveal the “naked” beauty of Keri’s unique voice and Sharon’s sublime playing.

The electric version of Long Long Way, which features Jay Willams, was a stand out track from “Bobby Says”.  It is coupled on this release with an amazing acoustic rendition of the song from the new album. A stunning video, inspired by those chilling horror movies that send shivers up and down your spine,  accompanies both tracks. Video links will follow in the next few days.

This is a digital only release which will be available on Bandcamp, iTunes, Spotify, Apple Music and a host of other digital platforms.

The new album will be released on June 8th and launched at Corner House Cambridge on the same evening. Digital and CD versions will be available.

New Strays EP Released

The third release by the masters of electro-punk is released today – The Strays are back.

The Double-A single covers the superhuman efforts of Richard Dreyfuss to save us and explains exactly what is Problematic about life today.

The single is available from Bandcamp and all the usual digital outlets

Strays Promo

 

Staggs Compilation released

A 15 track compilation, perversely entitled 13 Golden Greats, of pre-German Shepherd Staggs music is now released. Featuring the best of the duo’s early work this is a digital only release via Bandcamp, Spotify, I Tunes, Google Play, Amazon and many other digital outlets.

 

Mind Games

March 2nd sees the release of the debut album by The Mind Sweepers.

Based in Dumfries the four piece band has undergone a number of line-up changes over the last few years built around the core of singer/songwriter Paul Winter and drummer Bryn Thorburn. The current band also comprises John Mcinally- Guitar and Backing Vocals and Mark Jardine – Bass and Backing Vocals.

As well as the core members of the band other musicians appear – Win Liv Shak provides vocals and keyboards, Owen Fielding provides keyboards and harmonium and Al Price plays harmonica. The allbum was recorded and produced at Unit 7 studio Bladnoch , Wigtown , Dumfries and Galloway.

“States of Mind” offers a broad palette of styles moving from psychedelic grooves, via folk-rock into blues rock and should gain the band more followers.

We asked the band a few questions in preparation for the release of the album although bassist Jardine was extraordinarily reticent….

What bands were you in previously?

Bryn : The Garden Shed (mid 80s) ……..Dumfries based post-punk…Roger and Caz went on to form AC Acoustics in Glasgow. Lung….Manchester late 80s with Vicky MIddles on bass. Spacehopper….. 1991- 1998 Glasgow based Art Noise Terrorists( self proclaimed)…Signed to the Newly Formed Creeping Bent Records. Gram Solo……2002- 2005 Edinburgh psychedelic groovers. Currently also the main man behind The Screaming Love Collective…..A Psychedelic Post-Punk Dark Disco Groove Sensation.

Paul :  I got a band together in the mid-90s, The Comedown, we rehearsed for 6 months, played one gig, then disbanded. I then sang blues with a loose collective for a while, before moving into the singer/songwriter role for about a decade.

John : No past bands only jamming with some lads playing indie/madchester covers in 1990/91.

Influences?

Bryn : My biggest influence as a drummer is John Densmore of The Doors.
Musically…..PIL, The Fall, Joy Division, Crass, Northern Soul, Neu, Can, Krautrock in general, KLF, Scars, Josef K, NomeansNo, US Hardcore, Long Fin Killie.  (Glasgow early 90s). I could go on and on.

Paul : My influences are right across the board. Anywhere from early Elton John, to John Martyn, Pink Floyd to Bob Dylan. I’ve never had the money to buy a digital radio, so I’ve kinda missed the Radio 6 vibe. I’ve always found listening to other music kind of dilutes originality, and rarely hear anything ‘new’ that blows me away, with the exception of Doves, I love Doves.

John : The Byrds.. Hendrix.. Stone Roses.. 60’s psychedelia and soul.. The Brian Jonestown Massacre.

Current album listening?

Bryn : Snapped Ankles – Come Play The Trees.

Paul : Well I just moved into a new flat and got my turntable in operation for the first time in over 10 years, so i’m currently reliving old vinyl. ‘Captain Fantastic and the Brown Dirt Cowboy’ by Elton.

John : The Beatles – Magical Mystery Tour

MD Dumfries 2
Photograph – Brad Cain

The mix of styles on the album?

Bryn : Yeah a very mixed bunch of styles……as you can see from the answers above we are all into different styles of music and don’t want to tied down to a particular type, but we like to think that we can put our own sound on whatever style we are playing , so you’d know it was The Mind Sweepers.

Paul : Variance? Why not? I’ve found throughout my years of listening to albums that some bands end-up sounding ‘samey’, and you’re hard-pressed to even know the difference between certain tracks. In my view the vocals, and lead guitar, are what put the stamp on a band’s sound, obviously the rhythm section add to this, but to me it doesn’t matter what ‘type’ of song we’ve written, if it’s us playing it then it’s the Sweeper’s sound. I don’t think an album should be staid and stuck in a groove that repeats for an hour, with only tempo and lyrics changing. The Mind Sweepers are a sum total of all our parts. We can all play, and we’re all capable of original input, so why not go with that and see where it takes us. ‘States of Mind’ is the result of that ethos, and we’re quite proud of it.

John : The changes in line-up have definitely evoked a more psychedelic sound to the band

On the face of it, just the looking at some of the song titles there appears to be a nautical theme across the album?

Paul : My auld man was a sailor in the Royal Navy, and ended-up being a diver on cruisers. As a wee boy it was always my intention to join up and follow in his footsteps, but these hopes were dashed when I found out I was colourblind. Fast forward 20-odd years and it’s a motif that’s stuck with me. ‘Any Port in a Storm’ isn’t really about the sea, it’s about the beer-goggle ‘honey’ ye pull at midnight. ‘Taken by the Tide’ was an address to a female in my life as to whether I was actually any good to be around in the long run. (I wasn’t!) ‘Cast Away’ is a play on words , and not really nautical in all honesty. Had it been spelled as one word it would have taken on another meaning, and that’s why I named it as two separate words, to avoid that. ‘Nose Deep in the Sand’? ‘Sand’, in this instance, is what I thought a friend of mine called cocaine when he was on the phone, and it summed-up the getting ‘on it’ even when you were broke on the dole. Turns out I was completely wrong however, ‘sand’ was his toe-rag code for ‘cash’, but it’s interchangeable with regard to the rest of the lyrics, so it stayed, and it’s a good title too!

Ambitions? What’s next for the band? The making of the album?

Bryn : As a band we’d like to be able to make a living out of this….when me and Paul got together the plan was that it was self funding , and so far we have been able to keep to that, we have been able to fund the album through gigs . Of course we’d like to be a successful recording band touring the world but we are realists and will enjoy it while it lasts.

The album has taken 3 years and several line up changes to get to a position of recording our debut. This album is mostly a collection of songs written by Paul over the years that we’ve taken from being acoustic open mic songs that he would perform on his own , to them being full band multi-layered songs with honest lyrics about our everyday lives….I think that’s a very big part of the songs , that they are honest and raw, emotions laid bare for all to see….songs about one night stands , drinking too much, nights out on the town, broken dreams and life being unemployed.

Paul : All the lads in the Sweepers do ‘normal’ work, and I know for one that I’d be lying if I said I was happy at my age grafting my bollocks off emptying bins! It would be paradise to actually be able to jack the day job and be able to sit in my flat writing new material, but I’m a realist, and getting picked-up by a major record label isn’t something that generally happens to middle-aged men from market towns in south west Scotland. Nah, we just wanna build on our first album, keep getting gigs, and write the follow-up for ‘States of Mind’. Not too tall an order in all honesty, we’re just taking it one step at a time and keeping it realistic.

MS Dumfries
Photograph – Brad Cain

‘States of Mind’ is basically a collection of older material, all songs written by myself, except ‘Threesome’, which was written in 20 minutes at rehearsals by myself, John, and Bryn, hence why it’s called ‘Threesome’. Obviously we’re hoping it’s well-received, because that would give us the impetus to do another, but we’re all fully aware that ‘making it’ in the music business is as much about luck as it is artistic ability. We’ll see how it goes, and hope for the best. We’ve got a good producer, we’ve got a good band, we’ve got a cracking wee label to put it out on, and we’re all good mates. It’s a good mix, and there’s no reason we can’t keep at it.

John :  To write new material and record it. Keep on having fun and enjoy it.

Recording the album was a fantastic experience. Great fun working and recording with Hughie in a very chilled out relaxed environment

Mind Sweepers SOM Cover