Posts Tagged ‘Chris McCrory’

Catholic Action – Celebrated by Strangers

It would be fair to say that Celebrated By Strangers, the second album from Glasgow’s Catholic Action, has had a complex gestation, with recordings sessions for the record dating back to at least 2017. While promoting their debut record In Memory Of, singer and guitarist Chris McCrory told us that he wanted the follow-up “to change what it means to be in a guitar band” and feature My Bloody Valentine’s Kevin Shields on guitar. This is not that record. After all, the biggest change here isn’t sonic but the frontman’s own decision to confront injustice and let rip.

Musically Catholic Action are still deeply indebted to the sound of classic rockers like Status Quo, The Cars and T. Rex with opener Grange Hell’s noisy intro giving way to two minutes of jittery power-pop and several tracks featuring guitar solos worthy of striking a pose to.

Lyrically though they have pushed on a long way from their debut. Almost every track here has some kind of political message. Lead single One of Us is a noisy masses-against-the-classes throw down with McCrory proclaiming himself ‘the welfare son of a welfare son’. It’s a track that the singer describes as “written as a direct response to what I see happening in the UK – a country ravaged by poverty and a disintegrating social fabric of increasingly isolated and intoxicated people.”

Elsewhere from the sprightly indie disco of People Don’t Protest Enough to the closing Four Guitars (For Scottish Independence), McCrory sees the state of the world and decides he’s had enough. While there is a debate to had over whether retro rock is the most progressive or convincing medium with which to sell this message, his commitment and zeal is impressive.

They’ve not forgotten how to write a melody either. Another Name For Loneliness has a swooping vocal and a keyboard line that threatens to resolve into a David Bowie song at any second, while Sign Here is an explosive ballad that seems to address exploitation in the music business.

At times it feels like a strange fusion of medium and message but it’s a triumph that Catholic Action manage to imbue an increasingly staid format with some revolutionary zeal.

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Scottish Fiction and Last Night From Glasgow are proud to present ‘Magic 8’, the lead single from Annie Booth’s new EP ‘Spectral’.

Lead single ‘Magic 8’ showcases perfectly Booth’s lyrical frankness as she concedes “This is all I have to give to you and it’s nothing”, atop elegant acoustic guitar playing and building instrumentation; exposing herself and her shortcomings to the listener with a touching sincerity. It is a song which freely admits the writer does not have the answers; delving into the feeling of hopelessness and melancholy which permeates in all our lives, whether we admit it or not.

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‘Spectral’, the EP from which ‘Magic 8’ is taken from, follows on from 2017’s triumphant debut album ‘An Unforgiving Light’, and is a far more intimate collection of songs. Working with acclaimed producer Chris McCrory (Catholic Action, Siobhan Wilson) ‘Spectral’ showcases bittersweet notions set against sparse and creeping instrumentation. Affecting and dense in subject matter, ‘Spectral’ traces Booth’s maturing development as a songwriter both musically and lyrically.

Released March 29th, 2019
Composed and arranged by Annie Booth.Vocals, acoustic guitar, keys, synths and additional electric guitar performed by Annie Booth. 
Electric guitar, synths and monotron performed by Chris McCrory. 

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Glasgow’s sassiest and brightest band Catholic Action release their long-awaited debut album. A record that’s been years in the making for a band that has prolifically produced great material since their inception, the album was produced by their frontman Chris McCrory alongside Margo Broom (Fat White Family, Goat Girl, Dead Pretties, Phobophobes). The album is a a vibrant collection of guitar-pop anthems. Opening track L.U.V. is an example of Catholic Action’s angular approach to pop. The Shallows is one In Memory Of’s biggest moments, with it’s festival ready, sing-along chorus while New Year and Doing Well battle each other to be the album’s most catchy tune. Album closer Stars and Stripes brings together all of the album’s different elements, uniting the threads for a satisfying conclusion.

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The single Propaganda released on limited 7’ Vinyl, taken from their debut album In Memory Of. It includes B Side Sunday Driver (Divide and Conquer Edit). A breakneck paced slab of punked up art-rock, Propaganda typifies Catholic Action’s penchant for penning instantly memorable pop nuggets, with a sardonic and knowing sense of self. Propaganda is a snappy piece of morning after regret, with frontman Chris McCrory explaining that the track “is a bad reaction to a hellish night. Spent up to my neck in landfill indie and cheap pints. A drunken epiphany on the dance floor, when you realise you’re very, very lost.”

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Catholic Action are a product of Glasgow’s famously fertile music scene but have won fans across the UK thanks to their peerless pop masterpieces. After a run of rapturously received gigs in their hometown the group released their long-awaited debut release for Luv Luv Luv Records (Spector, Only Real, Splashh, The Garden) earlier this year.

The four-piece band are centered around the singular talents of vocalist and guitarist Chris McCrory – already known among key taste-makers as the drummer in Casual Sex, another of Glasgow’s leading musical lights.
McCrory, still only 24, became a full-time producer and recording engineer straight from school after establishing his own studio. While helping many of the artists in Glasgow’s burgeoning DIY scene, McCrory is also an exceptional songwriter in his own right and his group quickly became the most talked about in town.

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Catholic Action were formed in 2014 by McCrory alongside Jamie Dubber on bass and Ryan Clark on drums. Andrew Macpherson later joined as lead guitarist to add extra sparkle to the group’s own brand of glam noise rock. The Glasgow band performed at a slew of this year’s’ tastemaker festivals including Live At Leeds, The Great Escape and Radio 1 Big Weekend and have announced a UK tour to coincide with a new single on Luv Luv Luv Records.

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Just added this track cause I love it so much,

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Band Members
Chris McCrory
Ryan Clark
Jamie Dubber
Andrew Macpherson

Hot off the heels of support slots with Swim Deep, The Libertines and FFS, Glasgow group Catholic Action have shared new track ‘L.U.V’.

Catholic Action are a product of Glasgow’s famously fertile music scene but have won fans across the UK. After a run of well received gigs in their hometown the group are ready to release their forthcoming debut release L.U.V.

The four-piece band are centered around vocalist and guitarist Chris McCrory – already known for being the drummer in Casual Sex, another of Glasgow’s leading musical lights.

McCrory, only 24, became a full-time producer and recording engineer straight from school after establishing his own studio. While helping many of the artists in Glasgow’s burgeoning DIY scene, McCrory is also an exceptional songwriter in his own right and his group quickly became the most talked about in town.

Catholic Action were formed in 2014 by McCrory alongside Jamie Dubber on bass and Ryan Clark on drums. Andrew Macpherson later joined as lead guitarist to add an extra punch to the group’s own brand of glam noise rock. The group were personally invited by Alex Kapranos to support FFS at their sold-out show at the Barrowland Ballroom last August. Just days later, Carl Barat was in touch to ask them to open for The Libertines when they played Glasgow’s Academy the following month – an invitation to open on Swim Deep’s UK tour in October 2015 followed.

L.U.V. was recorded at the Green Door Studio in Glasgow and produced by Sam Smith (Casual Sex, Mother and the Addicts). Catholic Action will perform live at:

24 Feb The Dome, London (NME Awards w/ Swim Deep)
29 March Fallow, Manchester
30 March Sebright Arms, London
31 March Nice N Sleazy, Glasgow
1 April Underdog, Aberdeen
30 April Live at Leeds festival
20 May The Great Escape Festival

As punchy and jagged as those they’ve shared stages with, it’s a barbed introduction to their inner-city indie-rock. Taken from a debut release on Luv Luv Luv Records,

‘L.U.V’ is released on March 18th – both before and after, they’re racking up more road miles,

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A prime example of the often over-lapping nature of the city’s music scene of Glasgow . Chris McCrory, when not keeping time for the ace band Casual Sex, he also fronts another band called Catholic Action – a four-piece proving they have a knack of killer pop hooks. It’s unsurprising he knows his way around a song given that he’s also one of the busiest record producers working in Glasgow, with a hand in several of the stand-out releases of recent years. Catch them on Saturday (2nd May) at the CCA, where they support The Growlers, or on Sunday as part of Live at Glasgow.

LTD ED Split Tape from FUZZKILL RECORDS available online from March 30th and at the following shows:

Glasgow / Broadcast – Friday 3rd April
Edinburgh / Wide Days Festival 10th April
Glasgow / CCA with The Growlers 2nd May