Alex Neilson has been an important and intelligent force across the Glasgow scene for a while now. A constant collaborator and seeker of new ideas. Alex is a key part of this year’s festival and has been a constant support throughout the getting-of-it-all-together. He will be performing on all the days of the festival and in each case in a very different guise. But here I just want to get over the sheer beauty of Death Shanties. With Lucy Stein on paintbox and projector forming images out of bright colour and automatic abstract strokes and Sybren Renema blasting his horns across each forming thought, Alex has again jumped out of any nonsense box that music might find itself in. There is a touch of the medieval court about Death Shanties, that and the action art of the psyched-out sixties. I’m really pleased that this is happening and also that it is happening in Southside Studios, another reason to come south. This is real community.