“How To Get To Heaven From Scotland”
Deluxe Box Set Edition ‘Valentines Day release’ Saturday 14th February
Album released 16th February 2009 on Chemikal Underground

Last time we heard from Aidan Moffat, it was with the wonderful, darkly humorous, spoken word album and book package I Can Hear Your Heart, which received rave reviews on its February 2008 release. Less than a year later, 35 year-old Moffat is back in a new guise, as frontman of Aidan Moffat and the Best-Ofs.

It’s not really a band, says Aidan, so much as “an open-door club where anyone with a talent for something I like the sound of is welcome.” There’s no line-up in any traditional sense and members will come and go according to their availability, but for this album, the band includes Stevie Jones (Isobel Campbell & Mark Lanegan’s band) and Alun Woodward (ex-Delgados / Lord Cut-Glass). How To Get To Heaven From Scotland was recorded simultaneously with I Can Hear Your Heart, but, says Aidan, “the Best-Ofs one needed longer on the hob.”

Moffat’s aware that people expect to hear “more whinging from Glasgow’s alcoholic lo-fi miserablist” with each release, but it’s different this time. This is an album about love, with a beautifully apt 14th February release date for a deluxe box set edition of the record which will include the following...

• LP version of the album
• CD version of the album
• 7" with covers of Sonny and Cher’s 'I Got You Babe' and Glen Campbell’s 'Love Is Not A Game'
• 5 track CD EP featuring 4 alternate versions of album tracks  and an additional, bonus track
• A “How To Get To Heaven From Scotland” board game (with dice and counters)
• A Valentine’s Card personally signed and numbered by Aidan himself.

“The perfect Valentine’s Day gift for a loved one,” says Aidan. “Seriously.”

As such, this album’s about as playful – and cheerful – as Aidan gets. Heck, there’s even some beatboxing on the introductory track, Lover’s Song. Most surprising of all is the brevity of each track: this is an album without an ounce of flab on it.

“I decided it was time that I attempted to write some positive love songs, which is incredibly difficult to do if you want to avoid cliché and repetition,” says Aidan. “You have to try to make them both personal and universal, which can be quite difficult; you have to try to forget other people are going to hear them while also making sure it will appeal to an audience. There’s a lot more sunshine and happy endings on this record, plus a song about my grandfather’s non-existent ghost and a lullaby about the terror of impending fatherhood. Hopefully I’ve managed to keep it at least diverting for the 37 minutes it lasts.”

The title of the album comes from a pamphlet that was posted through Aidan’s door by the Glasgow Southside God Squad. “It makes perfect sense by the time you get to track 12,” says the singer.

Moffat’s certainly been keeping busy since the demise of Arab Strap, the duo he fronted for 11 years from 1995 to 2006. Alongside his many musical guises, the latest of which is a collaboration with Mogwai’s Stuart Braithwaite named Aloha Hawaii, he’s taken up a position as an agony uncle for website The Quietus, specialising in sex, of course. He’s already forming plans for the next album, and the next – but don’t expect it to be with The Best-Ofs.

“I’m currently of the notion that I won’t make a record with the same band or under the same name twice,” says Moffat. “My next album will most likely be one that I’m writing and recording with Bill Wells. I’ve also started a sequel to I Can Hear Your Heart, but it won’t be any kind of conventional music album so I don’t think that falls under the new rules. I reserve the right to change my mind anyway.”