The Greatest Scottish Bands Ever Part 2: 20-1



I've been @pault1888 thanks for reading, I'm fully aware that lists like this are never 'definitive', I'd probably change some of it myself if I did it all again tomorrow to be honest, music's a fluid thing for me, but hopefully there's a few nuggets in here that makes you listen to some of the bands listed, or even to go back to the bands I missed and listen to them instead. Cheers.


Brilliant choices and many trips down memory lane.... You Got The Power!

Alan Wilson

Terrific - some arguments over ordering but agree with top 3. I'd have idlewild and paul Quinn over a couple of others

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Honourable mentions also to: The Bathers, KMO, The Pearlfishers, Idlewild, The Waterboys, The Exploited, Eurythmics, The Silencers, Close Lobsters, Aberfeldy, Frightened Rabbit, Boards Of Canada, Mull Historical Society, Calvin Harris, Ballboy, Ivor Cutler, Django Django, The Scars, Jazzateers, King Creosote, Momus, Nazareth, SAHB, AWB, Scheme, Paul Quinn, The Wendys, Superstar...they also served.

Here's a Spotify playlist of (nearly) all the bands covered over the two parts, cruelly Win aren't on the platform...


Freaky Trigger is on there ....


Cheers I couldn't find them!

That's my list then, 40 bands that shaped the man I am. Not an exaggeration to say that either. Basically outside Manchester, there's no other part of the world that has given me so much of a musical education and joyfulness than the bands that have emerged from my home country. I'm sure not every band on this list is for you, but almost without exception they've been mine at some stage.

Angus MacColl

Will definitely read in more detail once back from holiday. ..agreed with No 1..biggest bone if contention for me is Simple Minds being in it! (And where are Slik? :-)


Feel like I should answer with a similarly partisan Manchester list. Been a belter to read Paul!

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1. Orange Juice. Many of the bands on this list simply wouldn't have existed without them. Their shadow looms large over every band that followed them out of Glasgow, their influence can be heard in pretty much every guitar band that plays with melody since the early 1980's. Never really got the commercial success they deserved, but their legacy is eternal. Simply thrilled honey to make them No 1.

2. Teenage Fanclub. I get all dewy-eyed when I talk about the Fannies, they are just magic. They have been bringing the sunshine to our lives for nearly 30 years now and their impact hasn't yet diminished, their last album Here being an absolute belter. Nice guys, great tunes, three brilliant songwriters and harmonies to die for. Love them eternally.

3. The Blue Nile. there's nobody in Scotland doesn't love The Blue Nile. If you find one, shun them immediately as they are clearly an arsehole. The first album is essentially the sound of nighttime Glasgow set to music. It's utterly mesmerising. The second album is arguably even better. Worked at a notoriously glacial pace, 4 albums in around 20 years, but worth the patience. A very special group.


Fran, this is me living your adolescence. Love, love, love


Has is a perfect album

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4. Aztec Camera. Roddy Frame wrote & recorded High Land Hard Rain when he was 16. I couldn't even get served in a pub confidently at that point. Absolute genius and second Postcard band on the list. Had his greatest commercial success with Love, the most '80's-sounding album of the '80's. This song inspired Johnny Marr to write This Charming Man. I have no higher praise.

5. Simple Minds. Once upon a time, they were the Celtic Kraftwerk. Really. Seven albums in seven years, 6 of them absolute classics (the first one was a blatant Roxy Music rip-off, but still has some slight charm). It all went wrong creatively when it went right commercially, the big Transatlantic hit & the Enormodome gigs meant it took a long time to remember just how good they were at their peak.

6. The Associates. Billy Mackenzie had undoubtedly the finest male voice ever to emerge from this country (Liz Frazer gets the female prize). Absolutely soaring as a singer, a troubled soul in private but flamboyant and expressive as a singer. He is sorely missed. I only saw him live once, in 1990, and whilst it wasn't the greatest show I've ever seen, he was special as ever.

Alan Wilson

Highlight of my musical life was selling my fanzine to billy in Dundee uni union disco