BUGS in the attic

“I’d like to be followed by a private eye, just to prove that I’m not for real”
Ultra Vivid Scene ‘Not in Love (Hit by a Truck)’

Ital Visions
Raise The Alarm
Light In Her Window
Hidden Camera Show
A Normal Suburban Lifestyle Is A Near Impossibility Once You’ve Fallen In Love With An International Spy
Let’s Fall In Love And Run Away From Here
Shutter Buggin’
I can Hardly See Them
the Government
the police and the private
Hide and Seek (demo)

Free music in Manchester

It may be considered bad manners to use the spill to promote things but I think I can get away with this as 1) it’s free 2) it’s all in a good cause and 3) it’s a damn fine day out. The annual Exodus Festval takes place next Sunday afternoon (2nd August) at Urbis & Cathedral Gardens in Manchester, directly outside Victoria train station. As well as being the source of my nom de blog Exodus is the arts project I help manage in Greater Manchester, working with Refugee and local community groups. There’ll be two stages featuring contemporary and traditional song and dance from across the globe (including Congo, Afghanistan, Kurdistan, Zimbabwe, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Nigeria, Iran, Angola, China & all points elsewhere) international food stalls, workshops & kids activities. More details can be viewed at http://www.can.uk.com/exodus/exodus_latestnews.htm

hope some of you can make it – if you do come and say hello, I’ll be helping to man the outdoor stage, in a ‘CAN’ badge & unfeasibly long (approaching ZZTopness) goatee.

Houses Of The Holy (new improved version)

I am a big Led Zeppelin fan, I was an even bigger fan back in the 1970s.

This album is almost perfect, fantastic cover art, great songs, but – and it is a huge but – there are two tracks I really don’t like.

They are The Crunge and D’yer Mak’er both of which I tend to avoid playing if at all possible.

Anyway, when Zeppelin were recording Physical Graffiti, they decided to put it out as a double album because the new stuff they had recorded was too long for a single vinyl album.

To do this they took songs that had been recorded for previous albums and used them to bulk the album out. There were three songs that had been recorded for Houses Of The Holy but rejected at that time.

Those songs were The Rover, Black Country Woman and Houses Of The Holy itself.

So, now that we are not limited by vinyl and tape I put together a better, in my opinion, version of the Houses Of The Holy album, using songs that were rejected initially.

I played around with the options and this is my final track listing;

1. “The Song Remains the Same”
2. “The Rain Song”
3. “Over the Hills and Far Away”
4. “Houses of the Holy”
5. “Dancing Days”
6. “The Rover”
7. “No Quarter”
8. “The Ocean”

I tried moving the track listing around in all sorts of ways but in the end just felt that a straight replacement was the most effective option because the dynamic of the album stays mostly the same except that tracks 4, 5 and 6 have a similar feel and make a nice solid block of riffery in the middle.

I think that it really works and it ROCKS, to go a bit Tommy Vance.

If you are a Zep fan and you have these tracks, give it a go and let me know what you think.

Ladybug Transistor

My brother went to a show the other day, and this band, that he’d never heard of, was the opening act. He liked them and told me about them, and I liked them, and now I’m telling you. They have two albums on spotify, and I’ve listened to them both in my distracted way. They have some elements that add up to general goodness in a band, by my reckoning…HORNS!! Musical complexity, and lots of instruments you don’t expect in pop music (cellos, flutes, violins) intriguing lyrics, a female bass-player (think about it–how many good bands have female bass players? Right?)

They play breezy pop music, almost 60s sounding, sometimes, but it feels like there’s more going on there. Anyway, there are two albums on spotify, and I’ve enjoyed them both, and thought I’d share…

Oceans in the Hall
Perfect for Shattering

The video I posted actually has a female vocalist, but most of the songs are sung by a fellow.

The EOTWQ Wears Its Disappointment Like A Badge Of Honour

1] The actor Nigel Havers is pictured here showing off the tattoo he had inscribed on his arm for the BBC4 ‘twixt-comedy-and-chat show, I’ve Never Seen Star Wars, in which Marcus Brigstocke invites out-of-touch celebrities to sample staples of prole, youth or cognoscenti culture they’d hitherto avoided or about which they’d dwelt in blissful ignorance. In a memorable display of damn good sportness, Havers got a tat, found that he adored The Simpsons, was pleasantly surprised by a Big Mac, and HERE found a route into The Smiths. Naturally, such a high-concept show had me considering what might be the gaps in my own popular culture experience, although I get little further than the title because I actually have never seen Star Wars.
So Question 1: Dislocation – which apparently essential cultural experience, one that simply everyone else has done/read/watched/tasted/etc, has managed to pass you by?

2] Still with BBC4-related quizzery: last year, back in the days when I (shudder) contributed to Guardian blogs other than RR, there was a film blog asking for suggestions of “TV shows you’d like to see re-made for the big screen.” The idea I posted was “Flight Of The Conchords: The Musical – directed by Michel Gondry.” Many months later, I sat down to watch an episode of the second FOTC series, and the director was of course Michel Gondry. Now, it’s not likely anyone got this idea from my one post on that Guardian blog but I did wonder about what the process and resulting kudos might have been if I’d been more active in turning my idea into this actual (if relatively small) cultural product.
Thus Question 2: Voice In The Wilderness Which of your achievements should have guaranteed you riches, glory or fame were it not for the conspiracy of a mocking Universe?

3] This question rips off a question ejaydee posed on the mothership earlier, asking what is the thing people are least proud of having done. Since a particularly lurid confession might place the ‘Spillers in exactly the same moral quandary as Montgomery Clift in I Confess, I’ll adapt the question:
Question 3: Shame. (a)If you could erase one thing you have done in your past, what would it be? and (b) Which one thing could you have done that you most regret not having done?

4] It’s not all about the politics of despair even in cruelty week, though. Question 4 sheds a little nightlight on the quiz.
Question 4. Fleeting Innocence You can answer this in your guise as a parent, grandparent or former child, or a combination – which is/was your favourite children’s book?

5] In honour of the RR social and reflecting on the ale-laced memoirs of those who attended, as a follow-up to the discussions on dinner party politicking and etiquette in last week’s EOTWQ, and because I bizarrely found myself at the Queen’s garden party last Tuesday (the explanation of why I was there makes it less bizarre but it’s too boring to go into right now), we close this oddly emo-flavoured quiz with a multiple choice.
Question 5: The Despairing Quest For Acceptance. You have the choice to be dropped into one of these social situations – in which one would you feel most comfortable?
(a) Drink down the pub
(b) Foody dinner party
(c) Queen’s garden party
(d) Just you, a tumbler of something free-poured, and your tunes
(e) An after-hours shebeen/lock-in/drinking den/speakeasy
(f) A big family do

Cruel to be kind…gremlinfc asks if it is so?

Getting to wear groovy tanktops was a plus in this fillum which gave me one of my favourite calm put downs ever…not really cruel but HONEST. What was the fillum? This grand scene included a flying plate of asparagus… Another great quote from a TV episode for which I was overlooked (had an inflamed pea at the time so looked unusual) is:
“I have seen more intelligent creatures than you lying on their backs at the bottom of ponds.
I have seen better organised creatures than you running round farmyards with their heads cut off.” Now that IS acerbic…
Finally , my fave rant and cruel jibe , which i thoroughly enjoyed doing (pictorial clue)
“I’m gonna rip the eyes out of your head and piss in your dead skull! You fucked with the wrong________(carries on)
I can deal with the bullets, and the bombs, and the blood. I don’t want money, and I don’t want medals. What I do want is for you to stand there in that faggoty white uniform and with your Harvard mouth extend me some fucking courtesy”
Easy points there , methinks.


Was looking for some films to watch with the kids, & we decided on this one. Reason for posting is it had the BEST soundtrack I’ve heard in a long time & the movie wasn’t bad either (x-men/x-files thing; government agents & gangsters with psychic powers chasing our heroes through Hong Kong. A bit like “Jumper”, except it didn’t suck.). Anyhow, there does not seem to be an official soundtrack album, so here are a few tracks to give an idea. Anyone else recommend a great movie soundtrack?

Don’t Take Candy From Strangers

During the recent rash of street pianos in London, Groanbox pitched up to play an impromptu set in Portobello before their gig at The Luminaire in Kilburn. Mr Groanbox, Michael Ward Bergeman, was so taken with the idea of playing slightly wonky pianos rather than his usual 120 bass accordion that he threatened to come back and hit as many as he could in one day once the tour was over ……. and he did ……

AOTW- The Chills, Submarine bells

I still consider Submarine Bells the best release by a Flying Nun band, compilations excluded. It’s over in a fairly racy 36 minutes, but covers a lot of ground in a surprisingly cohesive way.

There’s the folky tied up in chains linking the exhilarating sweetness of heavenly pop hit with the rockier oncoming day, which is then tempered by the intricacy of part past, part fiction and the ballads; the oddness of dead web and the Smiths-like cynicism of familiarity breeds contempt then lead into the extraordinary effloresce and deliquesce, and the whole thing is rounded off by the exquisitely orchestrated sounds of the title track. The fishy cover and Greenpeace info of the liner notes convey something of the dramatic political change taking place in NZ at the time, while Martin Phillips’ light hearted sci-fi tendencies (the swooping-past-planets or diving-into-suns of heavenly pop hit and the pseudo astro-chemistry of effloresce and deliquesce) blend with more serious themes of confusion, longing, conflict, and distance.

Give it a listen, either on the box or below, and please post your own opinions.

Spotify link here

Strange goings -on down t’Spill

I’ve just posted something I started writing over the weekend (don’t let that put you off, it’s really not that long) and was irritated not to find it on t’Spill when I checked. I didn’t realize that posts appear according to the date you started on them rather than the date you finished them (live & learn) – PLEASE scroll down, it’s the 8th post beneath this one.
Thanks! Merci! Danke! Kiitos! Ta very much!

The Dirty Dozen

Just returned from The Union Tavern where no fewer than twelve ‘Spillers gathered for an evening of food, drink, music and merriment.

Seated in comfort or perched precariously on the arm of a chair (left to right); snadfrod, Mnemonic, TatankaYotanka, Proudfoot, cauliflower, Tim (Kalyr), ejaydee, GarethI
Seated agonisingly on the floor (left to right); ToffeeBoy, Abahachi, glasshalfempty, tarxien

Click on the picture to see the horrible truth, closer up than you’d really like.

The eagle-eyed amongst you will notice that there are 13 CDs here – the additional one was supplied by DarceysDad whose presence was felt throughout the evening. A bit spooky – ever so slightly creepy really …

I’ll add some thoughts on the evening tomorrow and I’ll put some more piccies in the dropbox (far too tired right now) but I just wanted to say a big thank you to ejaydee for organising things and also to say how genuinely lovely it was to meet everyone.

The only down side of the whole event was the complete lack of ginger beer on the premises …

People Get Together

I’VE BEEN HAVING A scout round some blogs and music sites, and here’s a thing that caught my ear – Deerhunter and Panda Bear hook-up, it’s kinda like a big headache, but a nice big headache – if you like either Bradford Cox or Noah Lennox, then this will keep your ears nice big for just under 4 minutes:

Walkabout – Atlas Sound & Panda Bear

i haven’t got the new LEMONHEADs LP (which is all them doing covers) but i did hear some life being breathed into this old standard by Evan Dando, just goes to show and bit of feedbacky guitar can go a long way:

I once saw EVAN dando duet with Eugene Kelly of Vaselines and Captain America /Eugenius fame, they sang the River Clyde Song, ON the river clyde, most apt. I don’t have a recording of it, so here’s EUGENE with isobel campbell singing a different song instead:

Time Is Just The Same

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Pour encourager les autres

This is Admiral John Byng, whose trial and execution for not chasing the French diligently enough was satirised by Voltaire as being done to make all the other admirals try harder. A bit cruel, you might say; and here are some more cruel people.

Cruel Sister – Pentangle
The Cruel Brother – Five Hand Reel
The Cruel Mother – Shirley Collins
The Cruel Ship’s Captain – Bryan Ferry

Cruel Sister is bethnoir’s recommendation.

Kirsty MacColl’s 50th birthday event 11th October

Given how many times the lovely and clever Kirsty MacColl is mentioned on RR (usually as “much-missed, sadly-missed” etc with all her wit, storytelling gift, gorgeous voice and mischief), people may be interested in this special event for her 50th birthday to celebrate her many talents.

Cheers, Caitlin

The Duckworth Lewis Method

Not sure how I missed the reviews of this! Neil Hannon (of the Divine Comedy) has recently embarked on one of the strangest projects of recent times – a cricket concept album, in tandem with fellow Irish musician Thomas Walsh. Under the name The Duckworth Lewis Method (which will probably mean nothing to non-cricket fans) they’ve released an eponymously titled album which, amongst much more, features a song called Jiggery Pokery. Here’s a recent piece from The Times all about the track:

Here is a taste of Jiggery Pokery, a Noël Coward-style song about the famous ball delivered by the great Australian bowler Shane Warne that bamboozled Mike Gatting in 1993: “I took the crease to great applause and focused on me dinner/ I knew that I had little cause to fear their young leg spinner.” Then Gatting is out, after the ball “span obscenely”. And he’s very angry: “It was jiggery pokery trickery jokery how did he open me up?/ Robbery muggery Aussie skulduggery out for a buggering duck.” The song ends in a hysterical crescendo: “I hate Shane Warne!”

I think I might just recommend it over on the Mothership!

The Duckworth Lewis Method’s Myspace page


My brother texted me this afternoon from the Latitude Festival (taking place this weekend) to tell me that he’d just seen them performing and was more than impressed. I’m off to download the album – if you want a taster you can hear the whole thing on Spotify.

Mother’s Pride

I realize I can bore for England on the topic of my kids, but this time it’s something special (honest, guv). I’ve mentioned before over on the Mothership that mrdebbyjr writes his own songs, and I may well have regaled you all with tales of his fearless performance in a packed pub at a party a couple of weeks ago.
Last weekend was the little summer festival we run in the Schroederstift (that’s the place we live) and Sam and his band played their first ever gig, Saturday afternoon up on the main stage. For 13 year-olds on their first outing it wasn’t half bad! They sold every single copy of their recently recorded CD, and that at EUR 5 a pop – there’s hope he’ll earn his own college fees yet…
The sound man was great with the lads (they’d never even done a soundcheck before) and made them a little recording of their set. Unfortunately it seems to have gone on holiday with the Young Master, so I’m going to try and upload one of his solo songs (they’re all I can find on this computer). So, this is Sam & his magic pedal (many thanks to tincanman for patience & technical information)

My Dear Cousin

And this is the band with a track off their CD (but I’m not sure if this is the final mix!) available to anyone interested in about a month’s time, courtesy of Proud Mum
Shark in the Jungle

P.S. Just in case anyone starting up a RRecord lable is interested in this (hint, hint) – surprisingly enough they’re not signed yet!

Stay Cruel

I don’t have too many nominations and they aren’t particularly on topic but I haven’t done a playlist for a while and I really wanted to put up the Downliners Sect track.
I’ve been considering the Downliners Sect for a future AOTW, it still might make it, but here is a taster.

The Chloe Poems track is a personal favourite of mine too and should appeal to all good Guardian readers.

One Ugly Child

Mistakes and Regrets
The Queen Sucks Nazi Cock


Just thought i’d add a couple more. First is a track which I can’t remember whether i’ve posted before or not, but it’s definitely worth another listen (just not with the kiddywinks around!). The artist is Valerio Camporini Faggioni. The other is The Pony’s.

A Polite Man
I Only Love You ‘Cause You Look Like Me