The final Aztec Camera album was released in 1995.  It was the band’s sixth studio album, with them, more or less, appearing at decent-enough intervals without, apart from the sophomore album, ever appearing to be rushed out.

High Land, Hard Rain (1983)
Knife (1984)
Love (1987)
Stray (1990)
Dreamland (1993)
Frestonia (1995)

The trend looked as it was going to continue when Roddy Frame dissolved the band and began recording under his own name with The North Star (1998), Surf (2002) and Western Skies (2006) all hitting the shops in the same year as a football World Cup finals tournament was held. But then, total silence, albeit there was a spell in which he went on the road as a member of Edwyn Collins‘ backing band, playing a huge role in the efforts to help the frontman deal with the after-effects of his devastating bouts of illness.

It wasn’t until 2014 (again a year of a football World Cup Finals) that his next album, Seven Dials, was released on AED Records, the label that had been started by the afore-mentioned Mr Collins in 2011. Since then….nothing, and that’s despite Roddy, in an interview a few months after the release of Seven Dials saying that he was going through a prolific period in terms of new songs. Given that he seems to release new albums now at eight-year periods, here’s hoping that 2022 will prove to be the next occasion, although ideally, it would be sooner.

Anyone who ordered Seven Dials from the AED website also received a bonus CD of songs from a live show at Buxton Opera House in Derbyshire, England. It’s a venue I haven’t been to but it’s one I hope, post-COVID and the eventual return of live music, to one day pay a visit. It dates from 1903 and was fully restored to its full magnificence in 1979 after surviving threats to its existence following a three-year period in which it had closed. It now plays hosts to a whole range of comedy, variety and musical acts.

Roddy Frame played the venue on 18 February 2007….the show was recorded but none of the songs were made available for a further seven years until the bonus CD was issued.

There are six songs in all, consisting of three tracks from Surf, one from each of The North Star and Western Skies, and a b-side from a single released back in 1998:-

mp3: Roddy Frame – The Sea Is Wide (live, Buxton Opera House)
mp3: Roddy Frame – Small World (live, Buxton Opera House)
mp3: Roddy Frame – Over You (live, Buxton Opera House)
mp3: Roddy Frame – Western Skies (live, Buxton Opera House)
mp3: Roddy Frame – Reason For Living (live, Buxton Opera House)
mp3: Roddy Frame – Surf (live, Buxton Opera House)

It’s a very fine listen, and it really does makes me pine for the return of live music.



  1. I love seeing Frame but he really has started taking the piss, last time it was £55 to see one man and his guitar outside. Too rich for me but then again, I’m not a West End Lovey whom I suspect made up most of the audience.

  2. Buxton Opera House is a glorious venue. I’ve never seen a band there (the gigs tend to be a tad mainstream or kitsch retro), but did see the Iannucci David Copperfield in the lovely little cinema there last year.
    A major advantage is that it’s a 30 second stroll to the Buxton Brewery tap house where they sell the UK’s finest beer (don’t @ me, as I believe the kids say). Nice rail journey from Glasgow or Edinburgh via Manchester Piccadilly.

  3. Seen a variety of shows at BOH as it’s only a shortish journey along the A54 from chez TGG. Can vouch for Buxton Brewery and also the nearby RedWillow bar.

  4. I do wonder how Roddy keeps himself in guitar strings – its not like Aztec Camera were that big. I don’t imagine the royalties from Somewhere in my Heart are huge, and he hardly ever tours
    Saw him at Leeds City Varieties in 2018 – a quite reasonable £28 (and something like a 30 year gap since I last saw him in Aztec Camera)

  5. I was there that nite and it is a great venue ,It was video recorded with the thought of releasing a DVD, with fan interviews done to be incorperated on said DVD but something put roddy off on the night(An ex-gf claiming it was her) he started some songs over again very un-roddy like after 30 mins he went off obviously off his game he returned asked for the lights to be turned on so he could see everyone then soldiered on thru the set,so he was not happy with the gig and the dvd never saw the light off day so i was surprized when these 6 tracks surfaced

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