Earworms 12 November 2012

1: Soulsavers (ft Dave Gahan) – Take Me Back Home ~ DarceysDad

I know, I know, it’s new and shouldn’t be here.  [It's ancient history now. It's been in the wormbank for months. Ed.] But when you find yourself still singing a song even after your loved ones have repeatedly pleaded with you to shut up, it surely qualifies as a ‘worm, no? Soulsavers recycle Mark Lanegan into Dave Gahan, and recycle 2007′s “Revival” into 2012′s “Take Me Back Home”.

2: Ewan McColl – Looking For A Job ~ Tincanman

This and Splodgenessabounds’ two pints of lager are the epitome of desperation songs. They exist. I can see them. Right over there, how hard can it be?

3: Johnny Caswell – You Don’t Love Me Anymore – bishbosh

I love discovering new (to me) Northern Soul stompers. This is my latest find and I can’t stop listening to it. I’m sure a record with this sad a lyric shouldn’t be so cheerful-sounding, but it’s so damn infectious, I sure ain’t complaining!

4: Supersister – She Was Naked (1970) – SweetHomeAlabama

“She looked like instant pudding and it was the cream of the commercial increase.”  Say what?!  Firstly, I’ve been delving into Dutch pop and rock of this era and some artist-title combinations just jump off the page and call out for a listen.  Not exactly what I expected – a four-man group from Den Haag – but amazing in it’s own way.  Starts off with a mellow flute-y vaguely-Pink Floyd sound, and then halfway through abruptly kicks into high gear with a sound like some unholy mashup of Led Zep, Steppenwolf, Type O Negative, and Jethro Tull.

5: Sam Amidon – Tribulation ~ Mnemonic

Pretty much everything Sam Amidon does is an earworm for me but this one in particular because for so long I’d only heard him play it live.  It’s on an obscure indie label from a few years back and it took time to track down.

6: Tommy Cooper – Don’t Jump Off The Roof, Dad ~ Pairubu

Bless ! O.K it’s a stupid “comedy” song but the line “Just go to the park, Dad, there you can jump in the lake” is wonderful. I can hear my own daughter saying that !

The Word From Worminster Village   From a recent comment, I’ve a suspicion that some of you may have the impression that I temporarily “banned” Americana worms.  I’d like to clarify that there was at one time a huge imbalance in the wormbank and I did ask for worms from other genres to add variety to the playlists and noted that I had loads of Americana ones. I can’t recall exactly what I said/wrote to whom. I am sincerely sorry that I have been so clumsy in expressing myself that anyone would feel that songs/tunes from ANY genre were unwelcome. I would like to  make it  clear that all worms are gladly and gratefully received.
In fact, worm stocks will be dangerously low after Christmas so I would appreciate  some contributions in the next couple of months to start 2013 rocking and rolling. Yay! Sx


A big Thank You to everyone who contributed worms to this playlist or has sent them in to the wormbank. Please send your juiciest worms plus a line or two per song on how you got hooked to either earworm@tincanland.com or a wormhole near you. Thank you.

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27 thoughts on “Earworms 12 November 2012

  1. The Americana comment does ring a bell, because that may be why I sent you all those rockers. But absolutely no offence taken, and when I get sensible tomorrow I’ll open you another can of …

    Off to London now for Jess’ appearance this evening on the same Royal Albert Hall stage once graced by the mighty RockinMitch!

  2. Sorry I missed last week (I’ll write out 500 lines and hand them in after prep).
    Soulsavers – Yeah. Nice sound.
    Ewan McColl – Britain’s “Pete Seeger”. Can’t fault this. Like a lot of people, his politics were rock solid, but his personal life not so hot.
    Johnny Caswell – Good fun track. Get any party going, I would think.
    Supersister – Good one. The beginning reminded me of The Association.
    Sam Amidon – Very pleasant listening.
    Tommy Cooper – Back in the early days of RR, Dorian did a topic “Songs of Advice”. I wasn’t an RRer then and I wrote a letter (published) saying this should have been included. It is sage advice and I testify that I’ve never jumped off a roof (although there are those who wish I had).

    Good set.

  3. Soulsavers: If this had been a ‘blind earworms’ week (are worms ever sighted?), I would totally have had this down as a DsD choice. Got all the elements, innit. I quite like it (and Soulsavers in general, from what I’ve heard of them) without loving it. Not quite convinced it transcends the ‘genericness’. For me, it sounds a bit like they are trying to achieve/replicate something and I’m not sure they totally manage it.

    Ewan MacColl: Ooh this is a little close to home… personally and in a ‘wider picture’ way. Bit too bleak for me to really enjoy but I can relate. And it sounds surprisingly modern (as well as being ultra-topical).

    Supersister: Blimey, not sure about the several-songs-in-one business. Can’t quite get my head round it. Sounds like it might have influenced Groove Armada’s “At the River” and then Blur’s “Charmless Man”, crossed with something much, much darker. Certainly an interesting piece of music.

    Sam Amidon: A name I’m familiar with (married to Beth Orton, no?) but I’ve not knowingly listened to him. That said, I seem to have three songs by him on my iTunes, so I must have downloaded from the ‘box at some point. Yeah, it’s quite pleasant. Can’t think of much else to say really. Like the song it becomes about a minute-and-a-half from the end the best – another one that is several songs in one!

    Tommy Cooper: Surprisingly uncomedic – but perhaps that’s a cumulative effect of all this week’s worms! Yeah, I can see the appeal.

    Thanks all – a thought-provoking set.

  4. 1. Soulsavers- Nope, Too “clean” and never have like Gahan’s voice.
    2. Ewan MacColl- Nope. Boring.
    3. Caswell- Yup. I like the contrasting “sad” words and bouncy beat.
    4. Superwatsnames- Yes, Like this. Proggy and a bit barmy. The end bit is almost Gregorian.
    5. Amidon- Nope
    6- Cooper- Idiotic. What kind of fool would send this in ?

  5. Soulsavers – Quite liked this one although the pace is too slow for me. I think a lot of white British singers equate slowness with soul which isn’t necessarily so. I do like Dave Gahan’s voice though which helped a lot.

    Ewan McColl – Sorry, I’m sure he’s a very important figure, his politics are sound etc but I just can’t stand that voice he puts on. The song didn’t convey desperation to me even though that was it’s subject. Don’t like Peggy Seeger either. Clearly there’s no hope for me.

    Johnny Caswell – This I like. Joyful desperation. We need more of that.

    Supersister – An oddity. That’s in a good way. Should be on a film soundtrack. Far out man.

    Sam Amidon – Don’t know this guy at all. Pleasant-ish but didn’t knock my socks off. Or any other items of clothing. I did like the arrangement but not his voice or the song itself.

    Tommy Cooper – It’s ok but not hilariously funny. Of it’s time. A good ending to the set anyway.

    Sorry to have been so negative this week. I always hope to get a good reaction to any worms I dangle in front of you so I’m terrified of any bad karma. I did like the thematic play-listing and the whole was more than the sum of the hypotenuse – so there.

  6. 1. Soulsavers – Mine. I can see the validity of the criticisms that have been levelled at this. Doesn’t stop me liking it, obviously. And I may have reintroduced it as the very worm type I expressed above now. D’oh!

    2. Ewan McColl – I have a friend (a big folkie, and graduate of the old Ruskin College) whose musical tastes, politics and singing voice are like a not-quite-as-full-on Ewan McColl. One reminds me of the other. Without meaning any disrespect to either of them, this version doesn’t do it for me precisely because of the[ir] voice.

    3. Johnny Caswell – I really don’t get Northern Soul, but can’t even begin to explain why not, even to myself (where the need to solidify the explanation into proper words is much less important). I feel the need to say “Sorry” for that.

    4. Supersister – Certainly does what SHA said is written on the tin. Odd. Can’t really connect with it until the last 30 seconds, which are ace!

    5. Sam Amidon – Now this I like. But had to play it through twice to figure out who that voice reminded me of. Eventually got it: it’s Mark Kozelek at his most subdued. Damian Jurado, or Stuart Staples deliberately sounding nasal also suggested themselves. Quite like how it went all wibbly at the end too.

    6. Tommy Cooper – Hated it. With a passion. Unapologetically.

    I think I now know why we have so few comments on this week’s worms. I think there may be some regulars feeling that “the better part of valour is discretion”. Obviously, the DsD size9s, rhino-hide, pea-brain, cloth ears and lack of tact are a combination eminently suited to exercising discretion . . .

  7. I really look forward to Earworms but as usual I am late for the party ! ! !

    1: Soulsavers ft Dave Gahan – Take Me Back Home
    I really liked this. I loved the Hammond organ and backing vocals give the track a nostalgic feeling that I really enjoyed.

    2: Ewan McColl – Looking for a Job
    This reminded me of something from musical theatre actually. You know the part where the character gives like a monologue to the audience to explain why he is about to kill the wicked landowner or something. It certainly has a dramatic and visual appeal to me. I liked it a lot.

    3: Johnny Caswell – You Don’t Love Me Any more
    I really enjoyed the brass parts in this track and there is a nice bass line in background also and the Mexican vocal motifs are fun. The change of key in the middle is typical of 1960 decade pop changed the feel for a few measures which was ice. A really cheerful track even though the subject is quite sad ! ! !

    4: Supersister – She Was Naked 1970
    This was a strange track. It seemed to take a long time to really get going , but I really liked it once it did. I like the flute parts a lot ! ! !

    5: Sam Amidon – Tribulation
    I like piano pieces a lot and this is a nice one ! ! ! The arrangement was really nice. I think the piano gives a slightly more sophisticated touch to a folk track and the accordion parts are nice. I really enjoyed it.

    6: Tommy_Cooper – Don’t Jump Off The Roof Dad
    A lighted hearted take on a very serious subject. I think these sing along track are quite fun and the whole piece is really evocative of the variety theatre where obviously the guy comes from, but it is subject matter is just t dark for me I think.

    I actually felt there was a theatrical feel to the list this week. Tommy Cooper and Ewan McColl are the most obvious but there is a certain rock opera feel to Supersister. I enjoyed the playlist a lot as usual.

    Many thanks SR and well done everyone ! ! !

    • I like that idea about Looking For A Job. It’s true, when you think about it (or have it pointed out to you!), it really is like a stage soliloqy (sp?).

      You are wasted in your stupid job!

    • Hi Aba

      My records show that I’ve received five in total from you since June. Two have been used, two are scheduled and one is in the available pot. The last three being of quite recent origin, If that doesn’t sound right, email me and I’ll send you a list of what is in the earworms email account.

  8. I suppose that I must have been in a low mood when I made this playlist. I like Soulsavers, it’s a good example of its type.

    I know I should like Ewan McColl a lot, but this REALLY depressed me. I really wanted to schedule Don’t Jump Off The Roof, Dad immediately after it, but resisted the temptation.

    There’s the inexplicably wierd Northern Soul and then there’s the good stuff, and I’d rate this among the good stuff. Yeah.

    I loved Supersister. Okay, so it was a bit airy fairy and all over the place but I like 60s Dutch psychedelic rock and this is a great example. And what a climax.

    I thought Sam Amidon was lovely. There was something so soothing and relaxing and unhurried, and he SOUNDS like he’s a really nice person. Odd.

    Tommy Cooper. Not quite feztastic but nice and nostalgic and… altogether now..

  9. Soulsavers are like some exotic Egyptian bellydancer every time I hear them. It’s so seductive. I thought Mark Langeman was the perfect vocalist for it but now I am torn. Damn you DsD

    The Tommy Cooper was just a piss take, but, hey, why not.

    I like the word unhurried about Sam Amidon. He always seems to me to be a guy who isn’t out to prove anything. He does what he does, and people will find him.

    I think, SpottedRicky, that you were supposed to feel depressed after listening to that Ewen McColl. I don’t count myself as a fan. But the way he captured the desperation of someone who wants to work but can’t find any really hit me. There’s so much talk about gov’t policy and this and that, and it gets lost sometimes that the ‘labour market’ is actual people.

    Am not going to get into the northern soul debate because I am a foreigner and when I finally had it explained to me I decided to stay shtum about there not actually being any such thing.

    • It’s an odd concept for a ‘genre’, isn’t it? Naming it (after the event) after a region of another country that picked up on the music and (re)popularised it. But so many of the records that have been appropriated as Northern Soul are so worthy of an audience (that they wouldn’t otherwise have had) that I can’t help feeling its ‘invention’ was a good thing. But yeah, when I first heard what it was, I thought it was a bit of an odd term!

      • Yeah I’m aware of the inherent absurdity of the notion that as soon as you use a song as an example of Northern Soul, you risk it becoming so well-known that it ceases to be obscure enough to still BE Northern Soul.

        But the definition based around music whose prime function is to dance to it is a concept that I’ve never really got: I don’t dance, I’m afraid.

      • It’s a bit snobbish when you think about it (or put it the way you did). As soon as it is popular it’s out…which pretty much assures the best soul songs won’t be heard. So as a discerning music fan Northern Soul is a bit of an oxymoron.

        But I do like the idea of people going out and dancing with gay abandon. It’s an outing and it’s good exercise. I had friends back in the early 80s who went to this club and danced all night to new wave shite every weekend, and I went with them a few times. I didn’t participate because I’m earthground and reserved and the music sucked, but it was fun to watch. If it floats your boat.and doesn’t hurt anyone else, why not?

  10. To my ears, one of the less enjoyable sets of Earworms.

    1. Soulsavers- Not working for me. Don’t like the voice much and the song is dull.
    2. Ewan MacColl- Depressing.
    3. Caswell- This one was OK, much better, even though the sentiments are unhappy ones.
    4. Supersister- This is like a lot of Dutch rock I’ve heard before. Fun in a kind of retro way.
    5. Amidon- Never heard him before, knowingly. It was OK and grew on me.
    6- Cooper- No thanks.

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