Mouse Eat Mouse
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Mouse Eat Mouse

Band Spoken Word Punk


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"Rob Adams"


With opening gambits such as: “Figuration and dissociation represent polar opposites,” Mouse Eat Mouse clearly aren’t going for the reality TV-manufactured pop star market.
And yet there are refrains and choruses of a kind in this sextet’s repertoire that, given exposure, might well stand every chance of reaching the singalongalips of the masses. The backing vocals that frame CD Shade’s Red & Black rant about would-be anarchists, for example, might have favoured Blondie their most chart-friendly.
The shaven-headed, black attired Shade is the band’s focal point. Part street orator, part verbose, crazed English master, part modern day Rabbie Burns meets Tommy Sheridan, Shade appears to watch the Six O’Clock News for inspiration and sit there fumin’.
His mixture of invective, word play and remodelled Scots truisms marks him out as a very Scottish rapper. He wouldn’t argue with ranter as his job description, I suspect, and although a mite mannered, his delivery is splendidly judged with actorly precision and guid Scots richness.
Behind him is a band that rocks with similar precision and no little muscle, as well as subtleties such as soprano saxophone and cello phrases that evoke everything from bagpipes to phantom calliopes.
One rant that managed to reference Dante and fitba took us into poetry and jazz as Shade expounded to Cohn Gavigan’s shady tenor saxophone. Another found bluesman Lightnin’ Hopkins drunk — nothing new — “as a puggie” (possibly a first).
Where Shade’s skill and scorn score highest, though, is in denigrating career politicians and soundbite politics. Holyrood should listen to Aye & Ay and La Le La and cower at this 21st-first century Scottish folk protest music.

Rob Adams

- The Herald

"Alex Botten"

"Mouse Eat Mouse” Mair Licht (Hackpen)

If you can name me another band that sings in Scots (the language, not the
accent) then I will give you my felt wizards hat. Mouse Eat Mouse are
unique, almost impossible to describe and utterly essential. Are they folk?
Are they indie? Does it matter? I dont want to lessen this record by
comparing them to anyone else, partly because it wouldnt be anything like
them no matter what I say but mostly because it would cheapen Mouse Eat
Mouse to mention any other band in the same sentence. Im not even going to
give this record a score out of five as the breathtaking width of the bands
vision transcends such frivolity. Needless to say this is a landmark record
in Scottish music and one that deserves to be heard by many people but is,
no doubt and unfairly, probably bound for a Hidden Treasure feature in Mojo in 20 years time."

Alex Botten
- Is This Music?

"Uk Music Review.Com"

What a pleasant change 'Mair Licht' is. Mouse Eat Mouse are described as
"..a Scots spoken word punk jazz combo...". Insufficient info - this outfit
put contemporary, often outspoken, certainly gritty poetry to great
atmospheric music. So, spoken word - without doubt, punk - well I guess the
'words' can be a little anachic, jazz - not sure, but I can see where
they're coming from. Mouse Eat Mouse's 'Mair Licht' is a work to sit down
and really listen to. It's no good simply letting the vibes flow over you,
although they do. You'd miss the point! It's no good simply using this as
background music, although you could. It'd sooth and pass some time I
suppose. No, this is music to really drink in, to take notice of and to
learn from. This is probably something to enjoy all by yourself during a
quiet night in.
'Mair Licht' is stunning in its ability to grab your attention and make you
listen. Pure Scots poetry superbly interlaced and punctuated by gentle
rhythms and sympathetic solo's. Nothing's ever allowed to get too rowdy; the
instrumentalists are obviously more than capable of cutting loose but just
never do. The cello, bass, guitar and sax all sit perfectly behind the
'ranting' of CD Shade, each compliments the other and together they provide
a warm and rich feel to the poetic outpourings that are as serious as they
are often funny. You'll find yourself being reminded of Billy Connolly for
no other reason than the use of dialect and wonderful Scottish
colloquialisms. This is a charming and sensitive piece of work. And not just
that, it's a real chill to behold. Something's going on that just gets
inside you - certainly I found myself giving total attention to the entire
work and I thoughourly enjoyed it!
'Mair Licht' may just shed a bit of light on the work of Mouse Eat Mouse. If
nothing else it should do well north of the border. Hopefully the hoards of
music hungry Sassenachs will give this work the chance it deserves.
'Mair Licht' is beautiful gentle and yet powerfully equipped to educate and
entertain. Impressive!!
- Uk Music Review.Com

"Toxic Pete"

Imagine if you will, an even more Scottish sounding version of Arab Strap and you'll be somewhere close to arriving at the sound of five piece punk jazz outfit Mouse Eat Mouse.
Centred around vocalist CD Shade, a kind of wild eyed combination of Irvine Welsh, Billy Connolly, Ivor Cutler and Mark E Smith; Shade delivers rambling poetry and rants in a thick Scottish accent whilst the rest of the band lay down mournful Cello lines and tasty Sax blasts. As you'll no doubt gather, Mouse Eat Mouse are something of an acquired taste; the songs that make up MAIR LICHT hardly your typical radio friendly pop fare. This is an intriguing and compelling affair though, Mouse Eat Mouse essentially a modern day folk outfit who keep you hooked throughout.
The gloriously off centre likes of MOUSE EAT MOUSE WORLD and AYE AND AY are compelling works that see CD Shade acting as sometimes indecipherable preacher, you don't always understand what he's ranting about; but somehow he keeps you intrigued and hanging on his every word. HUSH NOU rides along on twee indie pop conventions, all very Belle And Sebastian meets Arab Strap whilst the more confrontational title track MAIR LICHT finds explosive saxophone blasts bursting out from the slinky guitar work and CD Shade's frankly terrifying angry ranting.
TUIM TATTIE is an almost straight forward pop tune by Mouse Eat Mouse's standards; Shade delivering his vocals at his most melodic, the rest of the band weighing in with a gentle indie groove and Collin Gavigan laying out a jazz fuelled saxophone storm. The rockabilly RED AND BLACK has dirty rock n roll guitar work keeping things driving along whilst the smooth jazz of LA LE LA/IRON MOUNTAIN allows Mouse Eat Mouse to stretch their musical muscles wonderfully.
A delightfully original sounding and compelling record, MAIR LICHT is the sound of Mouse Eat Mouse pursuing their own unique musical vision on a collection of songs that they can truly call their own. A unique, compelling and unforgettable record.

"50 best Scottish bands of all time"

The List: 50 Best Scottish Bands of all Time

No listing of Scottish artists would be complete without Mouse Eat Mouse an act with whisky in their veins and DNA Woven from Harris tweed. However, forget the twee tartan of the Bay City Rollers, the whimsical accordion of Jimmy Shand, or the strong accented Proclaimers. The Inverkeithing twosome may evoke a Celtic spirit, but Mouse Eat Mouse eschew modern language and croon their modern day Burns over a new- fangled electropop backing. Incompre-hensible to anyone outside Scotland, the world of Mouse Eat Mouse is one we should open up to foreigners and countrymen alike.
- The List


Hush Nou -

Mair Licht - Debut Album released through Hackpen Records Nov 2006 available at



Mouse Eat Mouse formed in 2001.

Actor and poet Andrew Slimon performed as solo scots spoken word support to Henry Rollins at Glasgow’s Pavilion Theatre, as C D Shade, in 2000. He was asked to support Henry Rollins again the following year and asked ex-The Hardy Boys singer John White to play guitar for him. They began to play some shows in Scotland and met ex-Wiseacres guitar player John White at a show in The 13th Note; unperturbed by having the same name, the two Johns began writing with Andrew and recorded three songs, Hush Nou , Cubismo and States Will Never Wither, with Trashcan Sinatras producer Larry Primrose.

Mouse Eat Mouse were offered a deal with Oxford’s Shifty Disco and the one off CD single Hush Nou was released to quiet critical acclaim. Mouse Eat Mouse played shows all over Scotland for the next few years, using various drummers and other friends to complete a constantly-changing line up.

The band spent the next two years rehearsing, writing and discarding forty two songs. They spent part of 2003 working with Govan-based hip hop crew Steg G and The Freestyle Mixmaster and various other collaborators but were unhappy with the results. They then did nothing for a year apart from gardening.
Buoyed, however, by being placed in The List’s 50 best new bands list, the original three piece agreed to play a rare gig for promoters Baby Tiger in Edinburgh in late 2004. The original three piece band met ex-The Hardy Boys cellist Kate Baker and one-time H20 saxophonist Colin Gavigan at the show and asked both to join on the spot . In July 2005, drummer Stuart Nelson was recruited and the band began working on a set of new songs.

Over the next ten months, Mouse Eat Mouse wrote and rehearsed enough songs for their debut LP and the new full-band version of The Mice began to play all over Scotland. With their live reputation beginning to grow and word spreading about their folk-indie-jazz-scots-poetry combination, Mouse Eat Mouse signed a deal with English label Hackpen Records and recorded their debut LP MAIR LICHT at Glasgow’s Maybank Studios.

In 2006, Mouse Eat Mouse played shows all over Scotland and were selected to play at the Tartan Heart Festival in Inverness. They began their collaboration with Perth-based artist Kyra Clegg and Edinburgh-based artist Jim McBride. Kyra Clegg filmed two videos with C D Shade ( the video for La Lee La / Iron Mountain was used as part of an installation at Dundee Centre for Contemporary Arts ) and Jim McBride designed the LP’s cover.

In October 2006, the LP was finally released to critical acclaim, by early 2007 the band had sold over 1200 copies cementing their individuality and wide appeal.

2007 has seen the band go from strength to strength and has seen them selected to play on the PRS New Music Stage at The Edinburgh Fringe Sunday event. This is an event which attracted a crowd of 250,000.