Top Five Friday – So Many Animal Calls

Who? Ross Stewart, So Many Animal Calls

Top five…songs that make me want to pick up the guitar

“The vast majority of guitarists I’ve ever come across seem to love really fiddly solos and awful riffs, which I’m really not a fan of. I’m more into weird song structure and noise of any kind, which I think my choices below probably indicate. I play guitar because it’s fun – I love smashing on pedals and seeing what sort of weird noises I can get from them, I love just thrashing away on it.

Mogwai – Glasgow Megasnake

I could have really picked anything from Mogwai – their back catalogue is consistently brilliant – but Megasnake is definitely one of the highlights. It is ferocious in nature with its hypnotic repetitive edge, and I definitely get the feeling for making noise when it’s on. When the new owners of the Barfly ran the ‘Name our venue competition’ to decide the new name of the club, I suggested Glasgow Megasnake which gained a good deal of support on Facebook. In the end, the bar chose the awful title of ‘Shenanigans’. They haven’t opened yet…wonder why? MON THE MEGASNAKE.

Nirvana – Radio Friendly Unit Shifter

As clichéd as it may be, I attribute Nirvana as the band that made me want to play guitar. Growing up I’d always known of Nirvana but when I hit 13 I didn’t listen to any other band for that entire year. I love ‘Radio Friendly…’ due its screeching feedback, rawness and the fact that every live version that was ever recorded always sounds completely unique and still relevant after all these years. They really started me off as a collector of music. I love nothing more, in music, than discovering some forgotten B-side or live recording from one of my favourite bands, and I have Nirvana to thank for that.

The Antlers – Atrophy

Whilst The Antlers are not exactly a guitar-centric band, I still feel they’re relevant on this list. Their album Hospice is pretty much one of my favourite albums ever, but I think however it’s as a live band that they excel. ‘Atrophy’ is one of the songs from Hospice that when played live, gains a whole new life. The guitars are huge and soaring, creating this immense wall of sound, all soaked in feedback and reverb. It’s just amazing to listen to and really makes you want to play with pedals to make some interesting sounds. is gold for live Antlers.

PAWS – Jellyfish

PAWS are without a doubt my favourite Scottish band right now. I love everything they’ve released so far and I’m extremely excited to hear their album once it’s finished. I could have picked anything from them, because their songs are just fun to play along to. Every release they’ve put out so far has been amazing, but this is my personal favourite from PAWS TAPE Vol.2. They’re just everything that every band out there right now should be aspiring to be.

Brand New – You Won’t Know

The guitar line is another hypnotic one that just seems to build and then punch you in the face. It really combines everything I love about playing guitar so I can’t really say much more about it other than it, and everything else on Devil & God is fairly immense. It’s without a doubt their best album to date. Everything is so unstable and messy sounding yet it just works. Jesse Lacey really knows what he’s doing.”

So Many Animal Calls release the single ‘Traps’ via Overlook Records on 13 February.

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