Earworms 1 September 2014

An up-tempo mix for you this week, hope it cheers up deanofromoz, who’s under the weather. On a housekeeping note, we’re getting low on worms at the moment, I have two from beltway and nine from goneforeign in the bank; if anyone else would like to send some in (especially if you haven’t sent any for a while), a top-up would be welcome. Just send them along to earworm@tincanland.com, where they’ll be in good company.

Clive Langer and the Boxes – Splash (A Tear Goes Rolling Down) – beltway: The considerable musical skills of Clive Langer are perhaps best known in relation to his production skills (or maybe as a co-writer of Shipbuilding with Costello) – his own performing however is not as well known as it should be (admittedly his voice is not for everyone) and his body of solo performed work is fairly small – here is one of the highlights though – you can clearly hear the foundations of the sort of sound he would perfect with Madness but it’s a great catchy song in its own right.

Haim – Don’t Save Me – abahachi: Can’t quite believe that I really like this retro pastiche from last year’s over-hyped soft rock media darlings, not least because I never really liked any of the bands they’re ripping off apart from Heart – but I heard it in a sleep-deprived stupor on a transatlantic flight last year, and still can’t get the damned thing out of my head…

Area 7 – Bitter Words – deanofromoz: Recently found this album in a bargain bin at a secondhand music store and have enjoyed rediscovering this track. Its nothing groundbreaking or unique, just some good Aussie ska.

The Rumbanella Band – El Congo – goneforeign: From the album Rumba Congolese. A song from mid ’60’s Kinshasa, it was inspired by the then popular Cuban Son and Salsa. It’s sung in ‘Indoubile’ a mix of Lingala and Spanish by Lola Bivuatu.

Sitting on Top of the World – Doc Watson – AliM: Some wonderful Appalachian Blues for you – to prevent further self-indulgence please send more worms!

Jakil – Istanbul – AliM: Another band to contact Earworms – pop/rock band from Edinburgh, now living in London. This single “Istanbul’ is due for release on September 28 – very catchy, slightly ‘80s feel? https://soundcloud.com/jakil/istanbul

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What’s new in heavy psyche and slacker, you ask?

Drones, drums created by planets smashing together, noises that were futuristic fifty years ago, vagueness, heaviosity. These  are all things I look for in a potential mate. We’re living in post-Impala times now. Wand are very hard to google and if you look in the dictionary under Noise-Throb, they’re there, looking back at you.

I can’t for the life of me embed the Wand player, but if you click here, it’ll open in a new window. 

Also, a nice young man named Galkin wrote in and asked us to listen to his psych/slacker-rock EP. Of course I always listen to anything described as “psych/slack” and quite frankly it fits the description perfectly. It makes me want to lay on the edge of the submerged quarry and watch the last rays of summer fade over the horizon. Galkin played all of the instruments on the tracks, and you could compare it to Unknown Mortal Orchestra perhaps. 

 

Introducing Patrick Williams (well, maybe you all already know about him, but…)

Staying at my mother-in-law’s in Llanelli last week, flicking through the lower depths of Sky television channels, we stumbled across an episode of The Streets of San Francisco featuring pre-irony Leslie Nielsen (i.e. back when he was simply a terrible ham rather than a genius straight-faced actor). Mrs Abahachi hadn’t seen it for years, I’d never even heard of it. Great fun, but the best bit as far as I was concerned – besides the fact that they put up titles for ‘Act I’, ‘Act II’, ‘Epilogue’ etc. – was the music; I’ve never heard of Pat(rick) Williams, but this is up there with the great TV themes, with classic 70s scratchy wah-wah guitar and some nicely dissonant chords.

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Housework Challenge

So Mnemonic wants some playlists to see what galvanizes people to do housework / cooking. I recall a similar question at some point in the past (can’t remember if it was an EOTWQ or one of Tinny’s challenges) asking for a song to do housework to. I do remember the sorely missed Sue / Spotted Rich putting up the most excellent Chamber Bros song above, maybe the best song in the universe. I’m pretty sure that i put up Van Halen’s Dance the Night Away.

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100 years since the start of World War One

So its been 100 years since the start of World War 1 – we don’t learn do we, when you look at all the conflicts that went on before then, and all the conflicts that have occurred since.

 

I see that RR has already tackled the topic of war before I was a regular, so I shouldn’t be running the risk of spoiling anything over there, but wanted to put together a playlist of war, or really, anti war songs. So please indulge me for my first post on the Spill!

 

Although my list is dominated by Aussie artists, don’t get too hung up on whose side the songs come from, the key thing is recognising the messages, which to put it simply really highlight the futility of war.

 

I hope you appreciate it.

 

I Was Only 19 (A Walk in the Light Green) – Redgum

Wow, what a song. Of course involvement in the Vietnam War was controversial for a number of different nations, including Australia. At the time, there was a national conscription done by a birth date lottery – that was one lottery you didn’t want to win.

 

In this song, Redgum sum up the so many of the themes so well – the pride of going off to war (“Townsville lined the footpath as we marched down to the quay, this clipping from the paper shows us young and strong and clean”),  the horrors of war (“A four week operation, when each step could mean your last one on two legs: it was a war within yourself”), and the lasting impacts of the war long after active service was complete ( “And can you tell me, doctor, why I still can’t get to sleep? And why the Channel Seven chopper chills me to my feet? , And what’s this rash that comes and goes, can you tell me what it means?”)

 

What’s a Few Men? – Hunters and Collectors

I am not much of a reader, but A B Facey’s “A Fortunate Life” is probably my favourite book and one I would highly recommend. It’s Facey’s memoirs and he certainly did lead an amazing life – his WWI experience being just one part of it. In the book, Facey recalls a high ranking officer  quipping “what’s a few men?” when told that a certain course of action would result in casualties.  This song is pretty much based on Facey’s recollection of his war experiences, and its such a powerful insight into the war. Mark Seymour, lead singer of the Hunters and Collectors delivers the lyrics so well. I actually prefer the solo version that Seymour recorded for his “Daytime and the Dark” album but I couldn’t find that on you tube.

 

And the Band Played Waltzing Matilda – The Pogues

Written by Eric Bogle, but I think the Pogues version is as good as any others going around.

 

The Battle of Brisbane – The Pogues

If you want another example of how stupid war is, look no further than the Battle of Brisbane. During World War II, American soldiers were based in the Australian city of Brisbane, for a variety of reasons –mainly either awaiting deployment to various hot spots in the Pacific, or for rest and recuperation.  Australia and the US were allies in the war, but as the stories go, the Aussie troops were resentful of the Americans, as their soldiers were paid more, they had better looking uniforms and they seemed to have a tendency to be more successful with the local women. Fuelled by alcohol, these tensions eventually boiled over and resulted in two days of rioting in the streets, and brawling between the Aussies and the Americans. Yes, you read right, during the middle of a world war, Allied forces were fighting each other on the streets of Brisbane. One person was killed, many others injured, and countless amounts of damage was caused by two parties ON THE SAME SIDE fighting.  The Pogues bring us a jaunty instrumental which you can just imagine being set to drunk people brawling in almost a Benny Hill kind of way.

 

Singing in Vietnam Talking Blues – Johnny Cash

This is such a simple song, but it’s a got a simple poignancy to it that I really like. Its basically Cash telling the story of him and wife June heading to Vietnam to entertain the troops – performing some concerts, spending time in a military hospital chatting to the injured, and trying to sleep with all the shells going off.

 

 

Khe Sanh – Cold Chisel

This song has become a bit of an anthem in Australia, and sadly, in my opinion, has become associated with drunken yobbos and karaoke. But to anyone that has badly belted out a rendition of this, I would encourage you to study the lyrics carefully, it really is a wonderful piece of songwriting, telling the story of someone returning from the Vietnam war and being totally lost with what to do with themselves. The shoddy treatment of Vietnam Vets when they returned was not unique to Australia (indeed for  a music look at this topic, also refer to “Born in the USA”- Springsteen, and “Four Walls of Raiford” – Lynard Skynard) and that topic is also touched upon in this brilliant track.

 

War – Edwin Starr

So if you haven’t worked out the message of this post yet, refer to Edwin Starr – what a chorus!

 

Give Peace a Chance – John Lennon

I have to end on an optimistic note, via a bed in at a Montreal hotel. “All we are saying, is give peace a chance”.

 

I have put all of these tracks into a Youtube playlist for those interested.

 

REBELLION 2014 – SUNDAY

I was going to do a different introduction to Sunday but following the recent bad news the main thing I will remember the day for is the last time I saw Colin fronting Runnin’ Riot. I’m pretty sure this was the best crowd and reaction I’d seen them get at Rebellion, and Colin was obviously enjoying himself. With a new record deal and a tour with the Old Firm Casuals, the band seemed to be taking a step forward after all these years. Colin’s sudden passing away a few days later will always overshadow the weekend for me.

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