The Modern Scottish Classic Award exists to recognise an iconic album from Scotland’s past – pre-dating The SAY Award – that still inspires today. With the winner chosen by the artists making up The SAY Award Longlist each year, the prize truly encapsulates peer-to-peer artistic recognition and the strong sense of community, respect and civic pride that underpins Scotland’s music industry.
‘Heaven or Las Vegas’ by Cocteau Twins is the recipient of the 2022 award. Released in 1990, ‘Heaven or Las Vegas’ was the band's most commercially successful release, reaching number seven in the UK album charts. Numerous publications have since declared it one of the best albums of the 90s, Pitchfork calling it “a core of ungodly gorgeous songs that is every bit as moving and relevant today as it ever was.” Label founder Ivo Watts-Russell goes further, candidly revealing in the recent 4AD biography, Facing The Other Way, that this album wasn’t just his favourite Cocteaus album but also his favourite all-time 4AD album, and “by a long shot”, calling it “the perfect record.”