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Bill Wells & I have won the first ever Scottish Album Of The Year Award for Everything’s Getting Older, and very happy we are about it too! There were a lot of great records nominated – personally, I was convinced Mogwai were winning it (which would’ve been fine by me) – but Fiona Hyslop said our name when she opened the envelope and I just about dropped my pint. I won’t go on about it too much – if you want more info, I suggest reading this Scotsman article because the picture is hilarious – suffice to say that if you’re reading this then you’ve probably been a supporter of the album since its release last May, and we’d like to say: thank you.

But more important than taking the prize is the new award itself. As I said on the evening – before we won! – it’s not about nationalism or parochial pride, it’s a simple case of arithmetic; there just aren’t enough spaces on other UK or international awards lists to fully represent the abundance of good music that our wee nation produces annually. The obvious parallel to the SAY Award is the Mercury, and they only have ten spaces to share out between four countries, so it only makes sense to have our own similar award – indeed it’s been a long time coming.

Music isn’t a competition, of course, but however you feel about awards in general we shouldn’t forget what they’re really about, and that’s selling more records and introducing new audiences to music they might have missed, and in 2012 that’s a very welcome boost to an industry that seems in constant turmoil as we continue to evolve and meet new challenges every day. It’s no secret that music’s in trouble, and anything that seeks to help it and engage the public should be applauded – it’s not just the 20 nominees on the original long list that benefit, it’s the shops, it’s the labels, it’s the venues et al, and I hope the SAY Award continues to celebrate the brilliant and diverse sounds that Scotland produces every twelve months for many, many years to come.

As for Bill and me, we’re hoping to have our second album out in 2014, although bear in mind the last time it took us seven years to get round to just booking a studio.

Thanks again,


P.S. As I said above, if you’re reading this then you’ve probably been a supporter of the album – so as a small token of gratitude we’d like to give you a gift: “(If You) Keep Me In Your Heart – Mix 5”, an alternative piano and strings mix from all the way back in 2003 from our first ever sessions. Here you go:


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A New Interactive Sound Installation by FOUND and Aidan Moffat

#UNRAVEL opens to the public on 20 April – 7 May as part of Glasgow International Festival of Visual Art at Arch 24/ SWG3.

#UNRAVEL is a collection of devices making up a gallery-based, reactive sound installation, through which the audience will attempt to unravel the truth about The Narrator’s life by playing records from his collection.

When we tell the story of a memory, how much of it is true and how much is shaped by who we are talking to? Once we’ve told the story many times, how do we even know what is true any more – what is constructed and what actually happened?

The installation is the work of Edinburgh based arts collective / experimental pop band FOUND, whose members include Ziggy Campbell, Simon Kirby and Tommy Perman and Glasgow-based author and musician, Aidan Moffat best known as one half of the band Arab Strap. FOUND and Aidan Moffat are signed to Glasgow record label Chemikal Underground.

At the heart of the installation is a vinyl record player and ten 7” records of familiar singles from pop music’s heyday. Visitors to the gallery are encouraged to select a record from the collection to be played. As soon as they drop the needle on to the record the installation springs to life. The vinyl controls a series of acoustic, self-playing musical instruments positioned throughout the gallery which soundtrack the story as the narrator recounts a memory he associates with that record. Each 7” record represents a different memory, but unlike conventional vinyl recordings they sound different each time they are played.

Just as a real narrator alters the way they tell a story depending on their mood, audience and context, the memories embodied in the installation will distort, evolve and warp depending on external influences: the time of day, the size of #UNRAVEL’s audience, the local weather, and what people are writing about the installation on twitter from moment to moment.

More info on #UNRAVEL at: http://www.unravelproject.com/

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So I was tweeting one night, professing my love for all three 80s hits called “The Power Of Love” – Frankie Goes To Hollywood, Jennifer Rush, Huey Lewis & The News – when Mojo’s Andrew Male responded with this: “Has anyone ever managed a medley of all three?” This sounded like a challenge to me, one which I duly accepted and then roped Bill into. Then we decided to throw in Peter Cetera’s “Glory Of Love” (from The Karate Kid) at the end too (and asked Norman Blake to sing it). If you want to know more, there’s a piece about it on page 18 of the new Mojo magazine (with whats-his-name, the Modfather guy on the front), and if you’d like to own it on a very limited edition 7” vinyl record, you can pre-order it here:


You’ll get the download too, of course. The b-side is an alternative version of our own “Glasgow Jubilee” recorded live on our last tour of Europe (you can hear a preview of that at the above link too).

The 7” should be available on our upcoming UK tour too – see dates below.



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The Cruel Summer EP by Bill Wells & Aidan Moffat (hello) has three tracks: a cover of Bananarama’s Cruel Summer; a new, slightly sad yet life-affirming love song named Box It Up; and a seasonal, Hallowe’en-themed, 8-minute erotic short story called Man Of The Cloth. It will be available digitally from the usual outlets, but the CD version also has an extra track called Lonely Weekend, which features me pottering about the flat, bored out of my mind on my own, listing all the things that make me feel lonely. And a horn section. We would have loved to make a vinyl version but we soon realised that carting hundreds of 12” singles round Europe in a tour van was sheer folly, and they would most likely be destroyed in transit. It’s much easier this way, and they also fit snugly into your pocket on the way home from the gig. It makes sense when you think about it, and nobody’s making CD singles anymore, so what better reason to do one now? It is, of course, also be available in your local, cherished record shop, or you can order it from Chemikal Underground by clicking right here.

And there’s a new video for Cruel Summer by Paul Fegan, the man who made The Copper Top film for us earlier this year. Here you go:



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‘Stolen Songs’ is Aidan John Moffat’s new covers album, available directly through him OH FUCK THIS WHO AM I TRYING TO KID? ‘Stolen Songs’ is MY new covers album, available directly through ME via Bandcamp. There’s no point trying to pretend someone else updates this site anymore, there’s just me, which is why it doesn’t get updated half as much as it should. Anyway, the album features covers of songs originally immortalised by Cyndi Lauper, Katie Melua, INXS, Gary Puckett & The Union Gap, Doris Duke, Marvin Gaye, The Kids From Fame, and it also has me reciting an E E Cummings poem (if anyone fancies being pedantic about the uppercase letters in his name, you’re wrong – he rarely used lowercase himself). There’s even a bit of Julio Iglesias and Willie Nelson tucked away in the middle too. You can listen to – and BUY! – the album here:


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