Best of the Best


I’ve been on my sickbed today (don’t worry, nothing serious, just a bit fluey) so I dragged the portable turntable into the living room and have been listening to a few things I haven’t listened to in a while.

I was just taking in a Fatcat Records compilation double album (“Across Uneven Terrain – 1997-1999″) and thinking how great it was (erm…if you like experimental minimalist electronica) and then I realised just how few COMPILATION albums I own. It’s probably less than ten and I only listen to a few of them regularly. I suppose it’s all linked with my fear of ‘shuffle’ and the pleasure I get from the arc of a well put together album, but I can’t help thinking that I’m missing out on something.

Shane mentioned the 50 Years of African Independence mammoth comp. recently, which I’ve been delving into with what I can find online, and I know there are the classics like Nuggets and C86 (which Blimpy Spilled a couple of years ago), but would love some more recommendations for decent comps to get my teeth into.

*NOT ‘Greatest Hits’ albums and not self-compiled mixtapes (although they usually are the best!).

Spill Challenge – something has to go


Well, it’s not every day I post a selection of my drawers on the ‘Spill. Plenty more where these came from – annoyingly you can’t really fill to the back of the drawers because if you pull them out too far they fall on your foot.

You know the drill by now – 11 pieces of music, which one will you cast to the wind? This week they are all instrumental, which makes it slightly harder, I think. Stop trying to read the titles on those cassettes, and get cracking!

Again, sorry if I’m slow to respond to comments, young’un is poorly so I’m dipping into the ‘Spill when I can. Keeps me sane (?). Continue reading

Punky’s Miscellany Week Five: I Really Shouldn’t Know This… But I Do

Before I begin, I’d like to take a moment to comment on the RR discussion thread I started a few days ago. I think a post-deadline discussion of RR’s future on the blog is an excellent idea, and hopefully it’ll generate some discussion. Now, on with the show…

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Earworms 25 February 2013

Greetings earwormers, on this wonderful Monday morning – of course it’s wonderful, it’s my birthday – “17 in Kilmarnock (never gonna be there again)” – thanks, Eddi. This week, we have five cover versions and some Herefordshire Americana. Thanks to all our contributors, and keep them wriggling to earworm@tincanland.

Apologies if I’m slow to respond to comments, young’un is in and out of hospital at the mo so I’m dipping into the ‘Spill when I can.

Joel Frederiksen – Northern Sky
Normally I would run a mile from ‘crossover’ but these fellas’ voices are melted-chocolatey-gorgeous. Classical musicians covering The Holy Nick Drake? On an album interspersing Renaissance music with Nick Drake songs it works surprisingly well. – DebbyM

Eddi Reader – Never Going Back Again (Queen of Scots)
I’ve nominated this more than once on the mothership. I think it’s brilliant; Eddi relates her move south to England and manages to work in a Fleetwood Mac song both as subject and as part of the narrative. It sounds nice, too. – Zala

Jim Moray – Big Love
I am rather fond of the unexpected cover version. I’m also rather fond of slightly unconventional folk artistes. I think this covers both bases. – Zala

Kathryn Williams – In A Broken Dream
Elegantly spare cover of the 1972 Python Lee Jackson/Rod Stewart classic. I like the original, but I like this too. – Ali

Misers – I Got A Woman
The Misers and I are now big friends so, in case you like them too, here’s a country-tinged one from the new album that’s been going round in my head quite a lot lately. Can a Herefordshire boy sing Americana? You betcha. – tfd

Communards – Don’t Leave Me This Way (Harold Melvin cover)
Jimmy Somerville gets short shrift for his falsetto and to some this cover is a sacrilege, but you’re dancing and singing along aren’t you? – tincanman

A Series Of Tubes


Herbaliser – Worldwide Connected
Brian Eno – Bottomliners
Data – Global Information
Gnarls Barkley – Online
Quarion – I Found You On Facebook
Oh No Ono – Internet Warrior
Robert Palmer – I Dream Of Wires

Early Years – All Ones And Zeros
Jim Noir – Computer Song
Peter Broderick – It Starts Hear
Damon & Naomi – Information Age
JD Meatyard – Myspace Star
King Creosote – Spystick
Mountain Goats – Surrounded

We’re Computerizing and We Just Don’t Need You Anymore


This has been totally fun for me – I love a playlist I have to work at – and I completely understand how it doesn’t connect for others .. I hope there’s some tracks to entertain in here.

There’s more bleep freak tunes than I’d normal put on the’spill (I haven’t gone overboard – I could have just swapped the playlist with tracks made using 8-bit sounds really annoying the hell out of people who like traditional instruments)…
I’ve included a good smattering of different genres to even it out, not too sure about the musicians colours, as I don’t have a Pantone chart set up for the artist skin tones.
Most tracks are bang on – internet themed – others are subtle – but I believe the lines about the internet are pertinent and important to my feelings for the song.
There’s not a single track that I think are ‘not up to scratch’ with my normal nominating (personal) taste. In fact, tracks 22-61 are all sadly left out because I do try not to bore everyone on here.

I hope there is something to entertain and it’s not a whole: abort – retry – fail.
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On the Water…

full moonOverWater

I’ve never written a post for The Spill before. Isn’t that shocking? So I thought it was about time I made amends and started chucking the odd thing on over here, as it’s nice to break loose from the RR confines when time permits and do something about what is lighting my fire currently. As I’m still getting used to the vagaries of WordPress, I thought I would just throw something out and use it to work out how to do the techie bits;  so hoping to work those out whilst writing this but hopefully still say something interesting…. Continue reading

Voodoo Man

If you google the name Antonio Forcione, the phrase that pops up instantly is ‘the Jimi Hendrix of the acoustic guitar’. Having seen him last night in concert at Manchester’s Band On The Wall, I find that description wanting. He has Jimi’s technical skill and imagination but his style of playing is, to my ears and eyes, more akin to a mix of John Martyn, Paco de Lucia and Stanley Clarke. At any rate, it’s quite astonishingly inventive and beautiful. This is the tune he played for his final encore last night, and it gives a flavour of the wonderful music he makes.

It’s all instrumental and contains much improvisation, but there’s always an underlying tune or two and some joyfully-syncopated rhythms to latch on to as his spider-fingers weave their webs. As a guitarist now forced to re-evaluate his own pitiful attempts at playing, I find what he does quite breathtaking. As a listener, I hope you do too.

He seems to play anywhere, with anyone (last night he had a percussionist and acoustic bass guitar player with him), and is not above doing covers of pop songs. His current concert schedule is here.

How Do You Solve A Problem Like RR? Or, I Couldn’t Think Of A Catchy Title…


So, there’s been a lot of discussion in recent weeks about issues with RR: nesting, the treatment of gurus, moderating issues, mess-ups by the editorial staff, etc. Fuel is boycotting the Graun, and this morning on Facebook amylee threatened to follow him. I promised I’d do a ‘Spill post on it this afternoon. Well, ‘this afternoon’ has become this evening and I’m in a rush to go out, so here goes…

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Nordic Noir? Try German Gris…

ritzelOkay, you asked for it – or at least AIP did: a random literary post. I’m horribly busy at the moment, trying to finish writing a book by the end of March, which explains why I haven’t been around much and won’t have time to post much until that’s out of the way – but today has been reasonably productive (not with the book, but I’ve drafted part of a German job application, and worked through a load of other stuff), and so I can afford half an hour to respond to his plea for more randomness. I very much enjoyed the discussion of his post on fantasy literature, and so thought I’d take a cue from the references there to hard-boiled crime fiction and the like…

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Up The Down Escalator


Echo & The Bunnymen – Going Up
Seam – Get Higher
Thee More Shallows – Proud Turkeys
Working For A Nuclear Free City – Rocket
Eels – Climbing To The Moon [Jon Brion Rmx]
Elbow – Weather To Fly
Hildur Gudnadóttir – Ascent
Joy Division – Insight

Harry Beckett – Rise & Shine
Mountain Goats – Transcendental Youth
Soundcarriers – Rise And Fall
Beloved – Up, Up and Away
Shriekback – Everything That Rises Must Converge
Underworld – Push Upstairs
Shelley & Devoto – Can You See Me Shining?
Flobots – Rise

Spill Challenge #whatever – Of Mice and Men

Records 2

Phew…. this was far more difficult than it had any right to be! I definitely over-thought everything and seemed to have ended up with a totally different list than I had planned.

I envisioned a cool, eclectic, hop, skip and jump through my record collection, touching down on a variety of genres from a range of eras. But when I started pulling records off the shelf, I got all distracted and sidetracked and my 11 track list turned into a 30 track one, with a heavy bias towards abrasive breakcore!
Out went the jazz, Finnish electronica and Nigerian psychedelic organ and in came the powerpop and Lebanese bozok! None of my usual roll-call of favourites made it either. No Liars. No Clinic. No Nirvana. No Anaal Nathrakh. No Not Not Fun, No…..oh you get the idea. I think it’s more of a mixtape than 11 stand alone tracks, but anyway, here’s what I ended up with…Oh…and I decided to go chronological, no one has done that yet have they?!

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Punky’s Miscellany Week Four: “The time has come”, the Punky said, “to talk of other things”.

So, after last week’s rather heavy topic, here’s the post I had initially intended to do in Week Two…

I recently reread two books I last read in my mid teens, Magician and A Darkness at Sethanon (both by Raymond E. Feist). They are respectively the first and third books in Feist’s bestselling Riftwar Saga, the trilogy that launched his Riftwar Cycle of 20-odd high fantasy novels, which will conclude with the publication of Jimmy and the Crawler and Magician’s End this year.

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Earworms 18 February 2013

Female singer
Image courtesy of Pixomar/

Well, its all female vocal for you this week.  Sorry, Beth.

One of the good things about being worm-mother (vermater?) is that I would probably have dismissed this week (I’m not mad about female vocal either), but having listened to the tracks several times and tried to get a good playlist together, I can tell you there is some cracking music here. Enjoy!

Thanks to all, and remember to send your wormy contributions to

Barbra Streisand – I Think It’s Gonna Rain Today
This is for those straight people who don’t understand the appeal of the Babs. It’s from her new album Release Me, and as always, she’s magical. (btw “tin can at my feet/think I’ll kick it down the street”… not a good idea) – tincanman

Esperanza Spalding – Radio Song
Can’t believe that I forgot this album was released in 2012, and so missed the opportunity to stuff the ballot boxes at the end of the year. This is fantastic in so many ways: the catchy tune, the vocals, the amazing bass, the heroic reclamation of the word “grooving” – Abahachi

Jazmine Sullivan – Good Enough
There’s so many offal “R&B” singers out there, but this one is the real biz. Like many an earworm, this is a great self-affirming anthem you can belt out when no one is around. – tincanman

Laing – Ich bin morgens immer müde
The surprise winner of Prof. Hachi’s beloved Bundesvision Song Contest… OK, it technically ‘only’ came second to a Big Name Act, but it’s been a massive hit. I defy you to keep all toes, fingers and hips motionless when this hits your ears. DebbyM

Love Psychedelico – Shadow Behind
This was the theme track to the really great and exciting detective series “Absolute Zero”  But it is also a typical Love Psychedelico track with a mixture of Japanese and English lyrics so actually no one understands it  ! ! !  But somehow I love the part where the singer (Kumi) sings “And I say to myself that I’m not afraid of love”  If only it was true ! ! ! – Sakura

Yanawaraba – Aoi Takara
Yanawaraba are two young ladies from Ishigaki Island, nearer to Taiwan than Tokyo. The influence of Okinawan music is plain to hear, one of them plays the traditional sanshin, in most of their stuff and particularly in this lovely song about ‘Blue treasure’. – Pairubu

…and I think to myself….

Do you ever get those WTF moments that just make you stop for a second and marvel at the diverse and interconnected world we are lucky enough to live in?

Don’t you just love living in a world where a 7 year old kid in Finland can start recording music on his dad’s iPhone in “Finnish, English and Gibberish”, get it released on CD, played on the radio by a DJ in New York, whose show is downloaded by an Englishman in Japan, who then Spills it to the world on a UK-based website to listen to on their computers or generic MP3 devices wherever they may be?!

Sounds a bit like Boards of Canada to me….

He Said – She Said – Chilling with Cool Korean Indie

It's So Romantic Mr P ! ! !Ummm. . . what did you say Ms S ? ? ?

It’s So Romantic Mr P ! ! !
Ummm. . . what did you say Ms S ? ? ?

sakura 1She Says:

This week we want to share some cool tunes with you ! ! ! There is so much more to the Korean music scene than just Gangham Style and K-pop and in this post we want to share some of the Korean Indie bands we have been listening to recently.  It is cool, relaxed and chilled post this week, but we hope you will like it!!!

Mr P-1He Says:

So it’s not just Gangnam Style after all ! I confess that I know little about Korea and even less about it’s music scene. I have, however, tracked down some fine music over the last couple of years and thought you might like to hear what’s going down in downtown Seoul. No K-pop this time, just good old “indie” stuff that’s full of charm.

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Spill Game Week 937 (approx) A Day in the Life


This is Severin’s List

Well it seemed like a good idea at the time……..

A trawl through the morning – a brief musical respite as the sun shines – and a slow descent towards the arms of Morpheus and beyond.

My last attempt at this was a personal miscellany. This is a thematic concept or “hastily assembled bunch of stuff about mornings or nights” to use the technical term.

You probably know most of the songs. It could have been any number of others. These just happened to be on my iTunes rather than vinyl or cassette tape. I’m actually quite surprised at how folkie it turned out in the end.

So anyway. You’re only allowed to shoot one of them. The others get to live another day. And night. And you have to kiss them.

nb – it has become de riguer to provide a commentary with your list of tracks. I break this new tradition with a careless laugh (too bloody lazy innit?).

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Punky’s Miscellany Week Three: ‘Slut-shaming’ and a semester abroad, or, for God’s sake learn to pick your battles!

When I started this series I said that I would write about whatever took my fancy each week. That wasn’t entirely true. By the time I had my first post finished, I had planned out my topics for the following two weeks. By the time week two rolled around, however, the universe (or rather that accretion of atoms collectively known as Peter Lewis Kingston Wentz III) interfered in this best-laid of plans. I briefly considered continuing the schedule as if there had been no interruption (i.e., post week two’s topic this week) but a series of coincidences have encouraged me to do the original week three topic in week three and leave the week two topic until next week (assuming nothing else happens along the way!)

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Earworms 11 February 2013


Greetings, ear pickers! Not ‘arf! (Those of you who’ve never heard of Alan Freeman can skip that bit). Well, a fantastic bunch of worms this week, right up my street, so I hope you enjoy them too. And keep them coming to Sorry if anyone has been waiting a while, I will try and keep up.

Puncture – Mucky Pup
A real old style worm here. This was played a lot in places like the Marquee and Vortex in 1977. The fine “Angela Rippon” ending was, I think, crucial in its popularity and shows an aspect of early punk that is often ignored by later commentators. It was damned “funny”. – Pairubu

Bobby Bland – Don’t Cry No More
I fell in love with Bobby’s voice after hearing his goose-bumply unequivocally best ever version of St James Infirmary. Here’s a sweet-soulful, grizzly-growlful, bouncy-blues boogie I often enjoy shuffling across the kitchen lino to, with Stan as dancing partner; it’s amazing what nifty footwork you can pull off, dodging a crazy mutt trying to bite yer feet. – wilemena

Dead Exs – All Over You
My favourite new band of 2012, the Dead Exs ( ) know rock and roll needs to be kept unkempt. And muddy ( ), if possible. If Dan Auerbach wasn’t so busy telling other bands what to do, this is what the Black Keys might be. – tincanman

Swamp Cabbage – Jesus Tone
I’ve been doing a bit of a Carole this year and scarcely listened to any music (apart from at work). This was my summer earworm 2012 and made me think of DsD – debbym

Besnard Lakes – Devastation
Ambitious, sweeping epic music from the Montreal-based husband & wife indie rockers. No, no, no, not Arcade Fire: the OTHER Montreal-based etc., etc. The wife, Olga Goreas, is the one crunching out the powerchords, husband Jace Lasek is the one fond of Beach Boys-style harmonies. – DarceysDad

Blanck Mass – Sundowner
Tangerine Dream de nos jours but with an undercurrent of darkness, used to striking effect in the Olympics opening ceremony. My earworms have been getting strangely positive feedback in recent months; this should polarise opinion more successfully. – Abahachi

that is the question?

face question copy
a few tracks from the youtube playlist in easier listening format:

1 If I Should Die Tonight Brakes
2 My Kingdom For A Horse Frank Turner
3 Human Racing St. Vincent
4 Act III, Scene 2 (Shakespeare) Saul Williams
5 Everyone Who Pretended To Like Me Is Gone The Walkmen
6 Some Tragedy The Good Life
7 The Bottom Line Big Audio Dynamite
8 Looking For The Perfect Beat (12″ Vocal Version) Afrika Bambaataa & The Soul Sonic Force

Shakes, Rattle & Roll

Shakespeare Remix

Stranglers – No More Heroes
Built To Spill – Made-Up Dreams
Primus – Tragedy’s A’ Comin’
Echobelly – Father, Ruler, King, Computer
Raymen – Blue Romeo
Asian Dub Foundation – Ease Up Caesar
Herman Dune – Shakespeare and North Hoyne
Radical Face – A Pound of Flesh

Stranglers – Pawsher
Love Spirals Downwards – Love’s Labour’s Lost
Laurie Anderson – Blue Lagoon
Dalek I Love You – We’re All Actors
Orbital – Nothing Left [Much Ado About Nothing Left]
Squarepusher – Iambic 9 Poetry
DJ Food – Dark Lady
Keith LeBlanc – Comedy Of Errors

A mountain to tunnel, and in that tunnel, courage to dig

RE: RRSA Shakespeare: Near where Marconius and I live outside Vancouver is an attraction called the Othello Tunnels – a series of five train tunnels and bridges through a rugged mountain gorge. I have oodles of photies, but this 2-min video someone made does the trick.

Dug by hand, they were the  most expensive railway mile in the world $300,000) in 1914. It was part of a line through the Rocky Mountains and as the project’s engineer was a lover of Shakespeare, he named each station after a Shakespearean character.

Who ever loved them not at first sight?

Shuffle off this playlist post

I hear grumpy sounds from this winteRR of disco tents

If you press play on the youtube clip there’s will be a little (slings and) arrow that appears at the bottom right just in from the youtube logo – if you hover over that and click the 23 track playlist will show along the bottom – skip to your hearts content.

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