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13 Ways To Experience The Real Edinburgh According To Young Fathers

Written by Young Fathers on April 28, 2015

Edinburgh based hip-hop outfit Young Fathers have just released their brand new album ‘White Men Are Black Men Too’, the follow-up to last year’s Mercury Prize winning ‘Dead’. To celebrate its release, Alloysious, Kayus and G take us through some favourite spots of their hometown, which features so heavily in their music.

1. Foot Of The Walk

This pub is at the bottom of Leith Walk, the long road running downhill, that starts near the middle of Edinburgh and ends up in Leith, which is Edinburgh’s mad aunty, normally kept in a cupboard but occasionally spruced up and shown off to the world then put back in the cupboard before she says anything too mad or gets arrested.

FOTW, or ‘The Foot’ is an unpretentious place where you can see families enjoying basic food and the cheapest pint in the city.

2. African Flavour Lounge

Formerly Mama Africa’s. This where you go to get joloof rice and chicken, rice and peas and other flavoursome dishes. We also shot some of one of earliest videos, Deadline, here.

3. Lighthouse Park

Fabulous views in a demi-industrial landscape. Across the harbour to the Ocean terminal and the Queen’s old ship that is surprisingly still afloat, and across the Forth to the mysterious Kingdom Of Fife. We have been known to stroll along in the eerie morning sunshine (eerie because it never suns in Scotland, unless something bad is about to happen) getting our pictures took. (Alloysious’ suggestion).

4. Drylaw Shopping City

For an authentic Scottish experience take yourselves away from Princes Street and head north to Drylaw. (G’s suggestion).

5. Crewe Road Youth Centre

Scene of many a barrie night. Looking for a little loving from the funders that be. Stop by and stick a few dollars under the doormat for luck. (G’s suggestion).

6. Dean Village

One of those places in Edinburgh where you do a double take. It’s as if someone has slid a huge postcard of a picture taken in some mill village in the borders in 1928 and hidden some kind of eyesore. But, nope, no eyesore, this place really is a 10 minute walk from Princes Street and people actually live there. And it looks just like this. Shagging pigeons and everything. (Kayus’ suggestion).

7. Elvis Shakespeare

This second hand and new record and book shop is in Leith, along with most of the good stuff. As likely to have a local beat group squeezed into a corner with customers spilling out on to the pavement as to have a single lone enthusiast spending hours and a surprisingly small amount of cash in the store to come out with some lovely pre-loved to be loved again. Genuine music lover boss.

8. Sneaky Petes

With a permanent tab behind the bar for any of us after the manager won a fortune betting on us to win the Mercury prize. The funkiest venue in the city. Small (100 capacity) but manages to book the latest must-see touring groups and run several intense clubs after every show. Go here for live music or…

9. Limbo (at The Voodoo Rooms)

Long running live club night with a superior booking policy in stupidly sumptuous surroundings. Great sounding room. Limbo mixes the best local acts with occasional touring artists and creates a welcoming atmosphere.

10. The Bongo Club

A club with itchy feet. In its original guise, the place where we met. Two moves and one demolition later and it’s still the same raggedy, vibing club, that can’t decide whether it’s completely alt or just a little alt. Stupidly, it has to close during Edinburgh’s busiest time of year (the festivals) so it might have turned into a dodgy stand up club when you arrive. Don’t blame us.

11. Dunbar’s Close garden

Typical of Edinburgh to hide away the good stuff. Down an alley off the bottom part of the Royal Mile opposite Starbucks. There. Not so hidden now! (suggested by Kayus).

12. Arthur’s Seat/The Crags

In the middle of Edinburgh is a bloody big volcanic mountain. That’s all. G’s never been up it but Alloysious has wandered lonely as the proverbial during the day and Kayus has had a romantic mooch or two at night, along with half the teenage population of Edinburgh.

13. The Studio

Where we end up and where we work and where we spend all our waking hours when we’re home.

‘White Men Are Black Men Too’ is out now via Big Dada.

Watch: Young Fathers – Shame

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