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Scot's East-West vs. Celt's North-South

Cathy Davey
Cathy Davey

Scotland: From the country where men are men and sheep are afraid come bands evenly matched between Glasgow on the western front and Edinburgh on the eastern side. Almost. Two of Edinburgh's are from Dundee and Inverness, and Glasgow's got one more band, but the nine acts represent the array of Scotland's vibrant indie rock scene, from the songwriter-heavy indie pop of Freddie Stevenson to the eccentric alt-pop of Glasgow's Frightened Rabbit. Not bad for the country that invented the fried Snickers bar.

The winners: Dundee's the Law, with a hint of 1980s love in their music. A close second is Jyrojets, from far north stronghold Inverness, with their hint of 1970s lust. Showing are the Dykeenies for unabashed Oasis adoration and New Wave indie style. Popup doesn't quite edge them out but sports a keen pop-rock sensibility.

Ireland: Protestant whiskey or Catholic whiskey? Eire's stock-in-trade has always been songwriters, which is why Irish pop is so substantial. With the Emerald Isle's Big Daddy of Rock playing, Van Morrison, the stakes are high. It's a gamble, what with Foy Vance's soulful folk and Channel One's electronic pulse, so place those bets.

The winner: Cathy Davey, hands down, for her engaging Sundays-ish alt-pop. Runners-up are Oppenheimer, for their unabashed electronica, and Dublin punk-synthsters Fight Like Apes get points for best band name, and Van's still the man.

East (Edinburgh)


Freddie Stevenson


The Law

West (Glasgow)

Frightened Rabbit

Make Model


The Dykeenies

Sons & Daughters

North (Belfast)

Driving by Night

Foy Vance

In Case of Fire


The Answer

Van Morrison

South (Dublin)

Cathy Davey

Channel One


Fight Like Apes

Paddy Casey


Aberfeldy, Edinburgh,, Wednesday, 11pm, Ninety Proof Lounge

The Dykeenies, Glasgow,, Thursday, 8pm, Wave

Frightened Rabbit, Glasgow,, Wednesday, 12mid, Maggie Mae's

Jyrojets, Inverness,, Saturday, 1am, Wave

The Law, Dundee,, Wednesday, 10pm, Smokin' Music

Make Model, Glasgow,, Thursday, 10:30pm, Friends

Popup, Glasgow,, Thursday, 8pm, Habana Calle 6 Annex

Sons & Daughters, Glasgow,, Wednesday, 11pm, Antone's

Freddie Stevenson, Edinburgh,, Wednesday, 9pm, Wave

Northern Ireland

Van Morrison
Van Morrison

The Answer, Belfast,, Friday, 12:45am, Latitude 30

Driving by Night, Belfast,, Friday, 10:30pm, Soho Lounge

In Case of Fire, Belfast,, Friday, 10:30pm, Latitude 30

Oppenheimer, Belfast,, Saturday, 8pm, Emo's Main

Van Morrison, Dublin,, Wednesday, 7pm, La Zona Rosa

Foy Vance, Belfast,, Wednesday, 1am, Esther's Follies


Paddy Casey, Dublin,, Friday, 12:45am, Soho Lounge

Channel One, Dublin,, Friday, 9:30pm, Soho Lounge

Cathy Davey, Dublin,, Friday, 8:30pm, Soho Lounge

Delorentos, Dublin,, Wednesday, 12mid, Ninety Proof Lounge

Fight Like Apes, Dublin,, Friday, 11:30pm, Soho Lounge

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