Spies, The Devil’s Staircase and Lemony Mackerel Pâté

This week’s Scottish Roundup is compiled by Hercules Moments’ Eoin Smith (@eoinsmith), a journalist, student and magician from Aberdeen.

A Bit About Music

Aldous Huxley once said that “after silence, that which comes nearest to expressing the inexpressible is music.” And it seems that Scotland’s music bloggers share this sentiment. The Shoogly Peg recently went to see Take That in concert, and marvelled how the singing quintet “radiate happiness”. He writes that the manband “constantly give the impression that being in Take That is preposterously fantastic […] and that being in a Take That audience is only marginally less stupendous than actually being in Take That.”

At the other end of the spectrum, journalist Euan L. Davidson muses on the etiquette of music reviews, and how sometimes you have to look beyond your friendships and connections to present an honest reaction to the music. It seems, though, that mutant science punk rock band We Are The Physics’ fans have no problem in expressing their views as they are shocked to hear the band have utilised an acoustic guitar in the recording of their sophomore album.

As a journalist and music fan, I’ve been lucky enough to meet some of my favourite bands and musicians. Emma Kempsell has learned the value of “[taking] risks in the city” after just missing out on meeting one of her favourite bands, TV on the Radio. Perhaps they’ll meet up in New York, though. (Warning: this link contains a naughty word. If you are of a nervous disposition, you are advised to take the necessary precautions.)

A Bit About Everything Else

Sometimes you come across a piece of writing that draws you into a much bigger project that you weren’t ever aware of before. Diary of an Office Girl: Not A Spy is a day-to-day account of a female spy who not only has assignments and terrorists to worry about – “the rescue mission was not successful, which is a staggering understatement considering a fair number of the team are dead” – but also ex-boyfriends and comfort-eating cakes from Greggs.

In the world of real-life politics, Love and Garbage takes a philosophical look at the SNP website, asking “if a speech is removed from a website, does it really exist?” Elsewhere Duncan Stephen, a.k.a. Doctor Vee, has created the “Ed Milliband Random Statement Generator” which is, quite simply, genius.

Over on The Blurst Times, an online newsblog written by journalism students, Joe Sutherland discusses the merits of the newly unveiled Nintendo U, which despite sounding like a 21st Century university is actually a games console with a controller that “looks almost like the lovechild of a Dreamcast controller and an iPod Touch”.

If you’d rather read about the great outdoors than technological advances, one blogger recently took part in The Caledonian Challenge, a mammoth hike through the Scottish wilderness: “I have always thought that Scotland was pretty awesome and the best of the scenery majestic,” writes The View from the Hills. “But walking into Glencoe at dusk, from high up above the Devil’s Staircase was beyond awesome. The sheer scale of Glencoe is breath-taking.”

The Ben Lomond Free Press recently posted a poem about the “sing-el fish”, a Scottish variation of the Great British institution: fish and chips. Whilst you’re reading, you might want to chow down on some delicious-looking lemony mackerel pâté as described – and photographed enticingly – by Wendy at A Wee Bit of Cooking.

And finally, sometimes we all just need to relax a little, as described so simply by Confessions of a Creative Writer. (Warning: this link also contains the aforementioned naughty word.)

Have a truly fantastic week.


  1. Thanks for the mention Eoin. I followed your link to Hercules Moments which looks interesting – hadn’t seen it before.

  2. You’re very welcome Laurie. I did indeed enjoy the rest of the blog; it’s a captivating story you’re weaving 🙂 x