Earworms 5 October 2015


Another stimulating selection for you this week, and a warm welcome to kalyr who has sent a very lively worm to wake us all up at the end. On the subject of death discos, if you would like to send in a Halloween-themed worm, please let me have it by Sunday 25th October for an early “special edition” on the 26th. Please send your worms (of any kind) to earworm@tincanland.com, and thanks to all.

Bob Dylan – Can’t escape from you – goneforeign: I awoke one night recently still plugged into my iPod, there was something intriguing playing, I couldn’t place it. I switched on the light and lo and behold it was Bob, from the Bootleg series vol 8 from quite a few years ago.

Rodriguez – I’ll Slip Away – deanofromoz: Rodriguez’s first album “Cold Fact” is one of my all time favourites. I knew it before the documentary “Searching for Sugar Man” exposed him to a bigger audience. Despite owning that album for a while (and I actually have an autographed copy of it too – long story that I think I might have told on RR before), I had never got around to purchasing the follow up album “Coming From Reality” until just recently. Its also a fine album, but nowhere near as good as “Cold Fact”. This is a bonus track that was added to the 2009 release of the album. Enjoy….

Eric Andersen – The Stranger (Song of Revenge) – tincanman: As an absurdist (https://goo.gl/aVnPKK), Camus would understand why an important but lesser-known 60’s folkie would seek meaning and value in setting interpretations of the mid-1900’s French philosopher’s work to music. From his new album, “Shadow and Light of Albert Camus”.

Christine and the Queens – Christine – abahachi: The solo project of one Heloise Letissier; reminds me a bit of Frou Frou and Imogen Heap’s solo records – not quite as quirky, but compared with most contemporary French pop this is really quite interesting.

Sidsel Endresen – Dododo – severin: A Norwegian singer/songwriter who often improvises her songs in the studio. Broadly in the same vein as Hanne Hukkelberg if you want a point of reference (and don’t we all?) I only heard about her when Olivia Chaney covered one of her songs – “Blessed Instant” on her own debut album. This original version of that song is from the 2009 album Undertow. So is this oddly atmospheric piece. Playing the album right through creates a mood of its own so I’ll be interested to see how it fares amid the other worms of the week.

Srinivas and Nityasri – Muthai Tharu – Ravi Raman: This duo has given a “modern” twist to this song, which despite learning in school I still stumble when saying out loud, let alone sing. A devout Christian teacher taught me, an atheist, the beauty of this Hindu hymn. How cool is that? Written by Arunagiri, a man who threw over 90% of his songs into the sea, Muthai Tharu is the jewel in the anthology of poems called Tiruppugazh.  https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Arunagirinathar

PiL – Death Disco – kalyr: Now this is right outside my comfort zone, but I saw them live recently, and this was one of the highlights of the set. Lydon has still got it, but rather than his atonal howls it was the combination of that hypnotic bass riff and Lu Edmond’s demonic guitar you found yourself listening to here. The instrumental side is how Pink Floyd’s “Another Brick in the Wall” might have sounded with a far better rhythm section and Robert Fripp playing guitar. Unfortunately the original studio version doesn’t quite have the ferocity of their live take last night. But this recording from Glastonbury does:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-P8cuygSNVg&feature=youtu.be

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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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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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Readers Recommend 10-Year Anniversary Social, London, 19 September 2015


L-R back: Bisbosh (wearing Steenbeck’s owl on his T-shirt), Wyngate Carpenter, Fuel, SaneShane, Abahachi, Darcey’s Dad, Toffeeboy, Burlap Sacking, Ejaydee, Barbryn, Son of Webcore (not really that tall, standing on a chair).

L-R middle: Flatfrog, Gordonimmel, treefrogdemon, Skippy-is-a-cult, Bluepeter, Mnemonic, Tarxien, KalyR, glasshalfempty.

L-R seated: Peter Kimpton, AliMunday, Severin.

(Apologies if I’ve mis-spelled anyone, it may be the Harry Potter influence).

Hello to everyone who came to the RR Social, organised by Peter Kimpton, at The Parcel Rooms in Kings Cross station. And hello too to those of you who couldn’t make it, we missed you!

Some of you will already have seen these photos on Facebook, but I am posting a selection here for those of you who are too cool for FB or who missed the event. There were Skype link-ups with deanofromoz and swawilg (apologies again for spelling – I mean our Belgian correspondent) – unfortunately the link with tincanman in Canada was unsuccessful. I’m not sure if there were any other Skype links as DsD, Gordonimmel and I arrived very late at Tarxien’s having been stuck on the south circular for two hours. She was very patient with us, and we eventually arrived at The Parcel Rooms in Kings Cross to find everything in full flow. Anyway, here are some edited highlights:

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Earworms 14 September 2015


Some more first class music for you this week (see what I did there)? I’m waiting for someone to release a Jeremy Corbyn rallying song … anyway, enjoy the music and many thanks to all contributors. Don’t forget, if you have any Earworms to spare, please send them along to earworm@tincanland.com.

Bruce Springsteen – Long Time Coming – deanofromoz: After guruing the RRSA Farming topic, where I A listed Bruce Springsteen and the Seeger Sessions Band’s “My Oklahoma Home”, I just had to explore this part of Springsteen’s career more, so I picked up his “Live in Dublin” album. It’s a mixture of the Seeger covers and a few Springsteen tracks done in that style. This is a reworking of the track that originally appeared on the “Devils and Dust” album.

Robert Palmer – Sneakin’ Sally through the Alley – CaroleBristol: This is from Robert Palmer’s first 1974 solo album. On it he is backed by The Meters and the late Lowell George. It is a funky little toe-tapper and it is well-worth looking out the album. This music is far-removed from his 1980s lounge lizard/sexual predator image, and all the better for it.

Johnny Sansone – Corn Whiskey – tincanman: The only knock on his growly, menacing voice is he has to remove his harmonica to use it. So this instrumental from the transplanted NOLAian* does me just fine. His blues is dark, heavy – and a bit scary.
*New Orleans person

The Darkness – Open Fire – Bethnoir: I believe that the Darkness very meticulously dissect songs by bands they love to discover what makes them work and then make their own Frankenstein’s monster-like versions. In this case I reckon it was “She Sells Sanctuary” by the Cult, but what’s not to love?

Shakti – La Danse du Bonheur – Ravi Raman: This song is unique, among many other reasons, for starting with the beat, associated with dance, rather than the usual alapanai of a ragam (stating of the theme). The percussion is from a tabla and a ghatam (basically a clay pot). Though McLaughlin stays in the background Danse has been a concert staple for every Shakti avatar.

Tshala Muana – Lubila – goneforeign: A 1996 release from Kinshasa by Tshala Muana, It’s from her album Mutuashi.

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Earworms 7 September 2015


Thanks to Ravi for an antidote to all those canines on the mother ship. I’m squeezing the last drops out of the summer, sitting outside to put this together, it’s freezing, I am besieged by winged insects and someone is operating some sort of smelly/noisy two-stroke engine. Glad I’m not as high as that cat. Anyway, here’s this week’s varied selection – thanks to everyone and please keep sending those worms to earworm@tincanland.com. Brrrr.

Venice Trip – Reign Dance – bethnoir: I think I’m addicted to this song, it’s the resonance of the bells/chimes, I keep hearing it even if I’m not listening to it. Venice Trip are a young London band, inspired by the Doors amongst others, they’ve been on BBC6 Music’s Introducing and I hope they’re destined for big things.

Dean McPhee – Glass Hills – glasshalfempty: AliM recently introduced us to the excellent Yorkshire guitarist, Dean McPhee. She is not the only one to have noticed his extraordinary talent. He is featured in a recent Boomcat ’14 tracks’ compilation, with this beautiful, almost Eastern, cut – his work described by Boomcat as ‘ancient sounding visions’.

Clarence “Gatemouth” Brown – Okie Dokie Stomp – deanofromoz: Another discovery from my second hand cheap CD rummaging was an album that I think would have originally been a give away with Uncut magazine or some such. It’s a compilation of favourite songs selected by Keith Richards of the Rolling Stones, and is actually really enjoyable, mainly in the blues genre, but Keefie also threw in some other stuff like Little Richard, Bob Marley, Hank Williams and even Tina Turner. This one is an instrumental, that is bluesy yet jazzy….not sure how else to describe it.

Manhattan Transfer – That Cat is High – Ravi Raman: After wading through 1300 songs on melancholy and misery I needed some serious pick-me-up tunes. Manhattan Transfer, a band that seems to specialise in this area, provided relief with numbers like this one – from their second and eponymous album – That Cat Is High.

Papa Wemba – Overdose – goneforeign: I lay in bed last night listening to a tape of Zairian music and this came on , Papa Wemba from the mid ’80’s singing about the eternal problem, a longtime favourite. I thought ‘that’s a perfect earworm’, so here it is, enjoy.

No-Man – Pink Moon – Fuel: English duo Tim Bowness (singer) and instrumentalist Steven Wilson (Porcupine Tree), perform this splendid cover of Nick Drake’s “Pink Moon”. (Ed.)

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Earworms 31 August 2015


Bank Holiday Monday here in the UK, and what better day for YoungMunday to be celebrating his thirteenth birthday? We have an extra earworm by way of celebration, chosen by the teenager himself, and very lovely it is too. Happy Birthday our kid! Nepotism aside, here’s a great laid-back selection for you this week, and a very welcome return by Toffeeboy. Thanks to all for the worms, and please keep them coming to earworm@tincanland.com.

Bob James – Westchester Lady – glasshalfemptee: Jazz purists probably hate ‘smooth jazz’ but there is a time and a place for everything. Here we have a prime exponent, keyboardist Bob James. He has proper credentials in bop with Quincy Jones before committing the ultimate sin of commercial success. I disapprove of the song title – I can hear my mother now, saying “She’s a woman, Paul – a lady is the wife of a Lord”. But I approve of the earwormy riff.

Aztec Camera – Let Your Love Decide – toffeeboy: One of the joys of my Scottish escapade has been the discovery of new music by bands that I’d somehow failed to explore – but equally, the discovery of music by bands that I’ve loved for years has sometimes set my pulse racing. This track, from Aztec Camera’s largely-forgotten fifth album, Dreamland, is a case in point. It’s almost too beautiful to bear…

Gabby Young and Other Animals – We’re All In This Together – severin: She has a lovely voice, she supported K*tz*nj*mm*r at the Scala and this is one of her best songs. That’s it really.

Joan Baez – One too Many Mornings – goneforeign: From Joani’s ‘Any Day Now’ album. Sept 1968, Gold album! That made my guilt at buying Dylan’s songs by an intruder tolerable, But I simultaneously loved Joani as much as Bob, so I had to have the album. I loved it and played it to death, particularly ‘Sad-Eyed lady’. So they all became ‘Earworms’ ’til this day.

Milk and Bone – Pressure – YoungMunday: Milk and Bone are a duo from French-speaking Canada. This track is from their 2015 debut EP “Little Mourning” which you can read about here: http://www.theguardian.com/music/2015/may/15/new-band-of-the-week-milk-bone-no-53 (it’s very earwormy).

Ryan Bingham – Nobody Knows My Trouble – deanofromoz: Ryan Bingham won the Oscar for best song for his contribution to the movie Crazy Heart. His “Mescalito” album is really great. My CD purchasing habits have moved from brand new stuff to rummaging through second hand cheapie bins, but I recently had a discount coupon for a store, so was able to buy up some that I had wanted to get, so I picked up Bingham’s “Fear and Saturday Night” album. This is the opener, and the real highlight on what is a really solid album, better than his “Junky Star” album in my opinion, although probably just a little behind “Mescalito.” I love the songwriting here, you can just tell it’s a very personal tale, but he doesn’t give much away, and that aura of mystery really makes the track.

Brad Paisley – Cluster Pluck – RaviRaman: Here’s a catchy tune that has earworm written all over it. Cluster Pluck by Brad Paisley featuring Vince Gill, Albert Lee and James Burton.

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