Bands on the run

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IMAGINE a world where the best gigs in Glasgow were spaced out between five venues — and you had a wristband that allowed you access to them all.

Daydream no longer music fans, because this week the underground and somewhat glorified pub crawl-come-festival Stag & Dagger returns to the city.

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It’s an export from London’s Shoreditch – which perhaps hints at pretensions of grandeur – but snobbery for all things down south aside and this year’s line up is a who’s who of some of Scotland’s best acts.

Spreading your time between the 02 ABC, Art School, Captain’s Rest, Nice N Sleazy and Stereo might not sound too hard – if they’re not in walking distance they’re at least a few subway stops away.

But choosing which of the 40 plus bands to devote your attention to at any given time is a harder task.

Scene’s highlights include Glasgow group Sons and Daughters (a nice prelude to their three-years-in-making fourth album due out in June)and Edinburgh six-piece Broken Records.

Another one to watch is one-man-and-his-guitar Withered Hand, aka Dan Willson – a self deprecating alt-folk singer whose songs might be depressing if it weren’t for a particularly dry wit shining through.

If that doesn’t appeal, there’s always Admiral Fallow, Allo Darling, French Wives, Kid Canaveral, Tall Ships, The Scottish Enlightenment, Victorian English Gentleman’s Club – and so the list goes on.

And if you still need convincing, there’s the fact that this year’s Stag & Dagger is sponsored by Red Stag — and that the Captain’s Rest will be giving out free shots of the stuff to wristband wearers.

While The Extra can’t condone taking advantage of this to excessive levels, it’s definitely worth a visit to the popular westend venue.

But rather than being fuelled by thoughts of their next drink, fans of indie, electronica and acoustic sets will be more concerned with fitting it all in — after all, 40 of the best the country has to offer for a ticket price of £19 is nothing to scoff at.

n The Stag & Dagger festival is on May 21 – from 7pm in most venues.To find out more visit www.staganddagger.com.