There's some obvious leg-pulling going on here from the off, given the title of Ewan Cruickshank's debut album. That shouldn't though dissuade you from checking out the charms offered up by the 11 tracks on A Glasgow Band. The cover photograph might be an in-joke too but it's less successful.
Opening with an instrumental as musically brash as it's title ('Youth Never Dies') things are kicked off with two minutes of tongue in cheek, pseudo metal thrashing which second song 'C.A.A.G.B' immediately tones right down, shifting into poppier, more glam rock, territory. Shades of the diversity Teenage Fanclub had in their heyday.
Pushing things further still track three, 'For A Girl', slows things right down to crooner pace for a piece of lovelorn mooning after an unnamed paramour. Pleasantly orchestrated by the time the string section comes in near the end it's otherwise unremarkable.
The un-focussed nature of the album extends through its whole course, making for a rather patchy listening experience. Nothing's actually bad on it (although 'Take Your Time's a bit of a waste of a minute) and you'll probably find the odd hook or two (and maybe some lyrics) coming to mind as earworms but it's a bit ineffectual overall.
'Dreams', the recent duet single featuring Siobhan Wilson (who also provided the bass playing) is sweet enough to rival Belle & Sebastian's efforts in the same vein but you can't help expecting it to do a bit more, rather than just kind of peter out as it actually does.
There's an obvious tradition (or even traditions) of Scottish indie music being carried on with A Glasgow Band's wide-ranging collection of song styles, pacing etc. but for the most part it comes across as well executed homage rather than the next big thing to set the heather on fire.
A Glasgow Band is available from Armellodie Records via bandcamp.