Franz Ferdinand headlines Glasglow's greatest rock -- EW picks the best undiscovered gems of the Glasglow rock scene

By EW Staff
September 30, 2005 at 04:00 AM EDT

The name of Scotland’s largest city comes from older Gaelic Glas cu, which translates as ”dear green place.” And indeed, the otherwise quiet town has been a verdant source of rock for decades. Below, a rough-guide family tree to the best guitar-wielding Glaswegians, past and present.

OLD SCHOOL

ORANGE JUICE

Rambunctious neo-pop leaders who reigned from 1979 to 1984; still name-checked nonstop. Check out: You Can’t Hide Your Love Forever (1982)

AZTEC CAMERA

A woozy, jazzier kind of pop, led by the bittersweet poet Roddy Frame, though never beyond cult status. Check out: High Land, Hard Rain (1983)

THE BLUE NILE

Cultish (in the U.S., at least) folkers; not much for the rawk, but knew their way around a synth. Check out: Hats (1989)

THE JESUS & MARY CHAIN

The undisputed Scottish champs of Velvet Underground-style jangle and swirl. Check out: Pyschocandy (1985)

MIDDLE SCHOOL

TEENAGE FANCLUB

Reviving Big Star-worthy pop once again at the dawn of the ’90s. Check out: Bandwagonesque (1991)

THE VASELINES

Ramshackle twee-poppers granted worldwide status by dictum of His Holiness (and dedicated fan) Kurt Cobain. Check out: The Way of the Vaselines: A Complete History (1992)

THE PASTELS

More wistful, literate indie pop, led by scene figurehead Stephen Pastel. Check out: Mobile Safari (1995)

NEW-ISH SCHOOL

THE DELGADOS

Widely underappreciated popsters, both shimmery and arch. Check out: The Great Eastern (2000)

MOGWAI

Hypnotic sound-wall spelunkers; put the ”mental” back in instrumental. Check out: Young Team (1997)

BELLE & SEBASTIAN

Scottish poster children for the melancholy picaresque of ’90s indie acoustica; still going strong. Check out: If You’re Feeling Sinister (1996) or The Boy With the Arab Strap (1998)

+ BANDS TO WATCH

Led by the rough-hewn, hard-edged folk rock of SONS AND DAUGHTERS, the new school still thrives. See also: MOTHER AND THE ADDICTS; PARK ATTACK; UNCLE JOHN & WHITELOCK; JAMES ORR COMPLEX.

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