Spillyear 2009

I chose this week’s year by picking a CD out of the rack with my eyes closed. It was Good News by Withered Hand, an artist I wouldn’t have heard of if it weren’t for you good people. The year was 2009.

This was also the first year I got involved with the Festive ‘Spill, which has introduced me to more new music over the last few years than anything else. Spookily, I posted one of my picks from that year, “Anna” by Taken By Trees, over on Facebook where Ali has been talking about Sufi music.

I’m cheating by killing two birds with one stone in the above video. But plenty more good music from 2009…

Listen to the playlist here

Add your top 3 here


Earworms 28 September 2015


A little less melody and a little more “wakey wakey!” on Earworms this week. I’m conscious that I’m still sitting on earworms from people from a few weeks ago – I haven’t forgotten them, it’s just that I’ve received more submissions than usual, which is brilliant, thanks to everyone. They will all be included before long. In the meantime, please keep sending your worms to earworm@tincanland.com, where they will be very welcome.

Lil’Kleine & Ronnie Flex: Drank & Drugs – abahachi: I guess that one definition of an earworm could be: a song you hear while flicking through Dutch radio stations in search of one that isn’t playing endless Robbie Williams, which sticks in your head despite the fact that the only comprehensible words are the repeated “Drank und Drugs… Drank und Drugs”, which suggests that this isn’t exactly Dostoevsky. I imagine that if this was in English I’d probably hate it.

Hookworms – Radio Tokyo – CaroleBristol: This came out at the end of last year and got a fair amount of airplay on 6Music. I kind of forgot about it but I heard it again recently and it has stuck in my head. I think it has a real “Nuggets” vibe about it, proper 60s garage band stuff with the organ-driven riff, but also there is something of “In Search Of Space” era Hawkwind in the later stages of the song. Anyway, I think it is pretty good.

Nemo – Car Crash Eyes – bethnoir: James Cook is a solo artist now, but Nemo were his electro-rock band formed in 2001, I love the spiky guitar and dark feel to this song, so catchy and bright.

2nd Layer – Definition of Honour – severin: Two boys and a guitar. And a home-made drum machine. And some other stuff. The music was, literally, home-made too as you can, no doubt, hear. It was 1981 and lower middle class punks were doing it for themselves.

Brooklyn Funk Essentials – Recycled – tincanman: Gil Scott-Heron with a sense of humour. Amusing but pointed tale of a man arrested for trying to get his neighbour to recycle. From their latest Funk Ain’t Ova, and sadly, neither is black men being mistreated by white cops.

Erroll Garner – Teach Me Tonight – goneforeign: Concert by the Sea – I bought this album when it was released in 1956, it’s been a lifelong favorite, I probably have 4-5 unplayed LP’s ‘just in case’. The Monterey Jazz Festival was this last weekend and they featured a group that performed this album to honor Erroll and that prompted me to go to iTunes and hear it again. I think Erroll Garner is one of the all-time jazz greats and deserves a wider audience. There’s an interesting Wiki page for those who’re interested plus Columbia just re-released the ‘complete’ album and Kevin Whitehead just gave it a rave review, check it’s well worth a listen.

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10 Years – Tons of Music!


Haven’t been over here for a while, time pressures really not helping at the moment, but given the celebrations and festivities, I thought I would just quickly reproduce something I’ve just put on the mothership, but I do know that it’s quiet on there at the end of the week, and not all old timers still pop in there, so here it is too…

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Taylor Swift & Ryan Adams: Songs half empty or songs half full?

@glasshalfempty (see what I did with the headline :) ) courageously included the Taylor Swift song Style on his RR 10th anniversary CD; I say courageously because she’s supposedly  just another lightweight pop sensation. Some, however, hear serious songwriting chops beneath that MTV sheen – among them the ever-melancholy Ryan Adams, an alt-country former bad boy – and it is now becoming hip to like her (saying you always knew bleh, bleh, bleh) … as long as Adams sings them. He has just released a cover of her entire new album, 1989, not because he needs the attention (which he doesn’t), but because he loves the songs.

A good reminder to trust your instincts and like what you like without shame.

Taylor SwiftStyle

Ryan AdamsStyle (Taylor Swift cover)

Earworms 21 September 2015


I once found a polecat in the tube of my tumble-drier. It was Halloween; I’d gone to the cellar to fetch some washing and the air-vent tube was jumping around the floor as if possessed … having reasoned with myself, I investigated further and found a polecat had crawled in under the cellar door; it was very beautiful and I managed to capture it with the cat’s carry-cage. I put the cage in the kitchen while I went to find the owner and discovered, on returning triumphant, that polecats are very clean animals and expel their excrement as far from their bedding as possible. Had great fun cleaning the kitchen. But I digress – thanks for another wonderful world of worms, please keep them coming to earworm@tincanland.com.

Alan Jackson – Angels And Alcohol – tincanman: Warning: It’s twangy, but not the usual contrived Nashville fare. I was surprised I could stand it, let alone like it. From his latest, it is beautifully written and perfectly sung. Melancholy without being sappy.

Vetiver – Current Carry – bethnoir: I feel as if Vetiver lead me into somewhat easy listening territory sometimes, which disturbs me, but I can’t resist laid back mood of this track from their most recent album, I even like the slide guitar which isn’t like me at all.

Matt Mattox et al: Lament – Lonesome Polecat – abahachi: Listen past the occasionally cheesy 1950s production, and this is a simply lovely song – I can’t help wondering why, unlike other songs from equally kitsch musicals, it never become a jazz classic (can’t you just hear Miles’ trumpet doing that melancholy vocal line?).

H P Lovecraft – The White Ship – CaroleBristol: H.P Lovecraft were a band from the psychedelic era, named after the horror writer. This track is from their first, eponymous LP and is named after a Lovecraft story. The music is reminiscent of Jefferson Airplane in places and has a very dreamy, spaced-out feel to it. It is probably their best-known piece and is definitely one of their better ones. Definitely a period piece.

izOReL – Qasida mursala – glasshalfempty: I am a fan of the amazing fire installations of Carabosse, a French company of fire artists. These are accompanied by live music, often from IzOrel, the solo project of Frenchman Aurélien Rotureau, who is based in Spain. This East meets West track is hypnotic, but I don’t know the singer’s name I’m afraid.

Shakti with John McLaughlin – Joy – Ravi Raman: Glad people liked Danse. Here’s another one called “Joy”, more frenetic than Danse and with the full virtuosity of JM/Shankar on display.

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