10 dan le sac Vs Scroobius Pip – I’m contracted to add Pip every year.. this is one of the best protest tracks of the year – again missed by Dorian. Stiff Upper Lip dan le sac Vs Scroobius Pip feat. Itch Repent Replenish Repeat
9 Orties – French elctro making you dance like a robot from 1984 – here you go – accented songs about orgasms and goths – sold. Ghetto Goth Orties Sextape
8 The Indelicates – Arcade Fire’s extremely intense love of their own dangly bits getting on your nerves? – then try this – yet another brilliant story telling album played with passion and anger but without the egoistic self love of the brilliant ideas involved – they ARE brilliant ideas and wonderfully imaginative musically and lyrically too. Bitterness Is the Appropriate Response The Indelicates Diseases of England
7 Zola Jesus – with strings, lush and cool reedits of her ‘famous hits’. Collapse Zola Jesus Versions
6 Manix – the Daft Punk album retro theft left you cold with it stealing from all the crap eras (when they used to at least try and be pioneers) and only having one track of any merit – yep – skip that and play this; it recreats 1992 with all the fun of a prodigy album off their tits with spiral tribe… no pretense at originality – no media hype – this it 24 hour rave and it’s boz. Your Love Is Over Manix Living In The Past
5 The Lovely Bad Things – the pixie aping nuggets loving bad things. Darth Lauren The Lovely Bad Things The Late Great Whatever
4 Savages – there’s is no better indie this year – full stop. No Face Savages Silence Yourself
3 Tricot – jagged jittery brilliance from Japan – a masterpiece of alternative buzz rock playing and performance. ACE. Artsick Tricot The
2 Sleaford Mods – ranting, swearing infested, bile, spewed forth with aggressive venom and stream of consciousness – brilliant – is number one album of the year when I’m not in polite company – (**this track from Jobseeker 3 track single not austerity dogs album). Black Monday Sleaford Mods Jobseeker album is Austerity Dogs
It has often been said that the Devil has all the best tunes. There is also supposed to be something diabolic about certain types of music and there is the interval known as diabolus in musica (the Devil in Music) a.k.a the tritone, an interval known for dissonance.
Diabolic and Satanic imagery has long been associated with heavy metal and Goth has always been as much about decaying ruins, vampires and death as it has about music.
Jimmy Page was, at one time, deeply interested in Aleister Crowley, the so-called Wickedest Man Alive and founder of the occult religion of Thelema (motto – Do What Thou Wilt Shall Be The Whole Of The Law) and the late Graham Bond was so obsesed with Crowley that he formed a band called Holy Magick and believed himself to be Crowley’s son.
Earlier still, it was said that Robert Johnson bacame a blues guitar phenomenon because of a pact with the Devil, signed at midnight, down at the crossroads. This idea later spawned a film about the same subject, culminating in a guitar battle between the Devil’s guitar hero, played by Steve Vai and the hero of the film, Eugene (guitar work by Ry Cooder).
So, music has a long tradition of dealing in the Black Arts and this playlist covers all the bases from posession and exorcism, through witchcraft, occult ceremonies and the Undead athrough to Hell and Damnation.
As you can see, we have 11 tracks. The task here is to decide which one will be saved from the Pit and which one will be cast into the Outer Dark forever.
The track listing is:
Charlie Daniels Band – The Devil Went Down To Georgia
Siousxie and the Banshees – Spellbound
David Byrne and Brian Eno – The Jezebel Spirit
Dr John – Gris-Gris Gumbo Ya Ya
Black Widow – Come To The Sabbat
Bauhaus – Bela Lugosi’s Dead
Cassandra Wilson – Hellhound On My Trail
John Martyn – I’d Rather Be The Devil
King Crimson – The Devil’s Triangle
The Clash – Straight To Hell
AC/DC – Highway To Hell
Ali’s photo for Earworms reminded me of two fantastic videos – The Hidden Camera’s video is so powerful it takes over the brilliant song. Based on an old comic Joel wrote – it’s been a live favourite for a while. The short film has been shown at festivals in Berlin and Canada to much acclaim. The freedom of the birds over the field at the start is rather significant.
Another film that uses the flight of birds as a metaphor for escape is Leonard Cohen’s – First We Take Manhattan, their flight is deliberately juxtaposed against the songs beat to discombobulate.
You might have noticed a recently in the news that sections of Einstein’s grey matter have been brought to the UK for the first time for an exhibition. You might have thought “That’s interesting, it would make a great subject for a song. I wonder if anyone’s ever written one?” You might have thought that, but you probably didn’t. If you did though, the answer is yes, The Dark released a classic single in 1981 on exactly that subject. They were a band that managed to combine punk energy, the ability to write a catchy pop song, and a moody quality that saw them gradually move towards “the genre that dare not speak its name” (goth in case you’re wondering).
The B-list provides an opportunity to compile a list free of the constraints and pressures of the A-List. To give a hearing to some tunes of choice without the limits of PC or taste. So i was a bit piqued to find my choices and list were less varied, less offensive, and more user-friendly that i had hoped for. (I used a bigger shoehorn too!) Almost too damn pretty of a list. I think Wyngatecarpenter may have put his finger on it – “Clearly this subject brings out a softer side in some of my favourite artists.” Slim pickings this week for hard rock, metal, punk, thrash, grunge, and hardcore hip-hop. On the upside – a banner week for 60’s grooviness, earthy blues, psychedelia, folk, culture, goth, indie/alt and J-pop. Continue reading →
For Halloween, I suppose, the local alternative rag has listed the 100 greatest Goth songs of all time. The other 90 are here. What say you, my Gothic friends? Over to you. And a very Happy Halloween to you all as well.
10.The Birthday Party -Release the Bats
9. The Cure – Disintigration
8. The Chameleons – Swamp Thing
7. Ministry – (Every Day Is) Halloween
6. Alien Sex Fiend – Now I’m Feeling Zombified
5. Joy Division – Atmosphere
4. Christian Death – Romeo’s Distress
3. Siouxie & the Banshees- Spellbound
2. Sisters of Mercy – This Corrosion
1. Bauhaus – Bela Lugosi’s Dead
If I was more of a cynic, and the sort of person who participates in blogs as a means of getting in a bit of sneaky product placement, I might have drawn on this album for my answer to Darcey’sDad’s music challenge. Owlet Music Vol.I is a recent compilation from the label run by Trwbador, a duo with whom I have a certain well-known affiliation, who contribute their Christmas song from last year; various of the tracks do seem to have a clear affinity with their style (lots of acoustic guitars, some electronic beats and an air of homespun eccentricity), and others clearly fall into their “well, we just liked it” category. Unfortunately my favourite wouldn’t have counted for the “you must own one track and one track only” challenge: Das Wonderlust get two bites of the cherry. You’re Only Young Once is almost as good as Swan Song – it’s more consistent for a start, whereas I loathe the spoken interlude in the latter with a fiery passion – but in the end, gloriously histrionic gothness wins the day. I hear echoes of Toyah’s Thunder in the Mountains, but then I’m old…
Of course, one of the major hazards of being a reviewer of a certain age, so to speak, is that everything tends to remind me of stuff I heard thirty years ago. Not necessarily in a bad way, but it might sound like that to someone else. I can’t think of any way of describing Francesca’s Word Salad‘s Something’s Missing in comparative terms (“a less contrived and commercial X”) that isn’t going to seem insulting, so let’s analyse the lyrics instead… “I’ve got three wheels on my tricycle… I’m an only twin…”: on the face of it a simple ditty about the fact that one’s life doesn’t feel complete without that special someone, but clearly the real message is (arguably) that, with a little raising of consciousness, you can realise that you actually have a perfectly serviceable bicycle, your parents’ undivided attention, and no arguments about what dvd to watch in the evening. This interpretation may be wishful thinking.
As for Super Cute Voices, they remind me of Pop Will Eat Itself. Which is a good thing.
The album is available on Spotify, if you want to discover the delights of Telefair, MeiMei and other artists who didn’t grab me enough to feature them here. I’ll leave you with Vera Gogh and Home Town, which feels sad and rather beautiful, as all songs about hometowns tend to be…
Does the Spill still do AOTWs? Ok then, do we do proper rock albums? (be nice, you hecklers in the front).
1985. MTV Launched stateside in 1984. The US was flooded with pretty Britpoppers making pretty Britsongs. A quick gander at the top tunes of the year shows the charts populated with the likes of AHA, Simple Minds, Wham, Duran Duran, Paul Young, Thompson Twins, Sting, etc. Meanwhile rocks offerings were neutered down to the likes of Starship, REO Speedwagon, Bryan Adams, and Foreigner. (Thank fuck for Prince and the Smiths).
A somewhat recent (ok, so it’s been 2 years by now) university grad sits catatonically in front of MTV. Somewhere in between drooling over Power Station and AHA videos, the strains of a Within You Without You-ish guitar intro leads into another band setup that’s very pretty indeed. The lead singer looks like he wandered into the video from the Summer of Love. Guitarist switched at birth with Dolph Lundgren. But wait a minute…that sounds like proper hard rock! And it’s so pretty! Sweet balm indeed to RTJ’s poor rock starved ears. Continue reading →
Probably like a few ‘Spillers here, i really liked the Cure as a teenager, but this tailed off over time – anyways uber-hip screamo gothcore duo Crystal Castles have bagged Fat Bob himself to add his distinct voice to their track “I’m Not In Love” – with interesting results.
Did anyone else go through (or are still in) a goth phase at any point in their lives? What was the gothiest thing you did? Or wore?