Why oh why is it Y?
Well, I’m away for a couple of days and really don’t need to come back to a full inbox of astronomical levels – so we get a tough one… and a little earlier in the week.
It’ll be easier next time – I promise.
The game to illustrate either:
How wildly eclectic your taste is… or,
How perfectly streamlined it is.
One Direction – that’s 1D to you. The first band in US Billboard history to have their first three albums debut at number one. And no, I can’t name you one of their songs either.
I first became aware of Louis Tomlinson -1 of 1D – when he got clobbered in a pre-season charity football match. Undeterred, he is about to do something rather unique: he has signed a non-contract deal with Doncaster Rovers as part of an ongoing association with the club in aid of Bluebell Wood Children’s Hospice, and will tonight make his debut for the reserves against Rotherham in front of 4,000 adoring 1D fans. This is very noble of Mr Tomlinson and we should all salute him for using his celebrity status to good effect. But it also struck me as somewhat unique in that everybody gains from his participation: the fans get up close with their idol, the club gets more people attending their matches and who knows they may even come back to watch the first team, Bluebell Wood will be better able to support and care for children less fortunate than ourselves, and Tomlinson fulfils the dream of playing for his beloved Rovers.
So that’s a good example of giving fans what they want. There are plenty of questionable ones. Anyone for a Kiss coffin? Do you really need eight Pearl Jam live lps? Or do you lust after a pair of them oven gloves, immortalised by Half Man Half Biscuit?
Can you think of an altruistic act of giving by an artist? Maybe you can think of an act of pure exploitation that needs to be aired. Any stance should be supported with some form of evidence or justification.
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’s only a smidge over a fortnight away, but we are already nose deep in a miasma of festive hokey cokey. Never mind the pressures of performing adequately as bestower of presents and hospitality, surely it is the Christmas single that elicits the strongest of reactions. Yes, in the main they are a commercial race to the bottom bereft of the merest scintilla of musical worth, but they do seem to burn themselves into the memory in a way that other music mostly fails. Play Wham’s Last Christmas to the man on the street and it would probably stir a more emotional response than anything off Reflektor could yield.
Which of the X Factor’s burnt offerings will be repeating on us for years to come? Paddy Power have a SiCo chosen alumnus odds-on for Christmas Number One. But peer a little further down the list and you might be surprised to find narrowing odds for The Specials, AC/DC and U2.
So here’s your opportunity to get your esprit de humbug ratcheted up early and have a festive foam at the mouth about Christmas singles you hate. Or maybe, just maybe there’s one you sneakingly regard as worthy of attention. Support your suggestion with the thinnest of lyrical mastery, the tinniest in Casio presets and the cheesiest in video direction.
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
Okay – so it’s Luke’s birthday HAPPY BIRTHDAY PANTHERSAN
I picked up my record player in a suitcase and headed to the wilds of Japan’s countryside (via China so they could make my record player) and I grabbed a few slabs of vinyl for a party game.
What connects the songs?
DON”T TYPE IN THE ANSWER – just say YEAH, I GOT IT – when you work it out.
and we’ll wait until the birthday boy knows what the link is.
happy happy joy joy – pin the tail on the panther GO:
Kool Thing Sonic Youth
Get It On Grinderman
Rebel Without A Pause Public Enemy
Miss Lucifer (Bone to Bone Alec Empire Remix) Primal Scream
Blondes With Lobotomy Eyes My Life With The Thrill Kill Kult
TV All Greasy (feat. Anti-Pop Consortium) TOBACCO
Apollo Throwdown (Star Slinger Remix) The Go! Team
One of the “problems” with headphones/earpieces and music is that I tend to lose myself in the song. Frequently that results in my singing along. I have a terrible singing voice, but what the hell, even I can’t hear it with the earbuds in.
Occasionally though, I find myself doing it in company. Not good.
This morning I have been sat in the canteen area of the school DsSis has her Orchestra practice at.
Noticed I was being stared at. Realised I was singing along. Looked down at my Walkman to see what the song was.
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.
Here’s one for Maki – one end of my living room (the only room downstairs apart from a miniscule kitchen) – so it’s sitting room, work room, dining room, laundry room, TV room, music room … you name it.
Reg, poor fella, is poorly and has had to cancel a number of gigs this week. I’ve never heard of somebody of his vintage suffering from appendicitis, but it sure sounds like a better reason than some have given for not turning up.
The Bangles once stood me up. I was due to meet them in the Hammersmith Odeon but success (for them) stepped out of the shadow and whisked them away (Eternal Flame went to No.1 in the US so they never bothered coming over).
Keith Richards was a no show at Wembley because he’d cut his hand and it got infected, so no Steel Wheels for me – suppose I should be grateful.
Stevie Ray Vaughan died in a helicopter crash a month before I was due to see him, once again at Hammersmith – what is it about that place, or was it just me?
Anyway, between the lot of us there must be QUITE A FEW gigs that never were. I want to hear about yours so we can all read ‘em and weep.
A chance comment the other day and news items about the BBC got me thinking about British comedy. I like a bit of comedy, me , but find much of today’s output ( especially on the BBC) pretty feeble and lacking in laughs.
I began to wonder if this is a symptom of me growing old. Each generation , naturally, has it’s own comedic zeitgeist which , like an old photograph, is bound to fade over time.
I do think, though, that a path can be traced, in Britain, in which , though each generation succeeds the previous it also draws inspiration from it.
“So what, Big Ears ?” I hear you, rather rudely, enquire.
Winter sun through a window in Pamplona (C)lgconnolly
So with all of the excitement in the world of organised religion this week, I found myself pontificating (how apt) about the strangeness of it all. It was prompted specifically by some comment that I read about “primitive religions” worshiping the Sun – and for some reason that really rankled with me… Continue reading →
In case you’ve been on the moon all day, My Bloody Valentine have released a new album. I went onto their website and was greeted by this stentorian pronouncement:
This vinyl album has been recorded as an analogue album. It was recorded on 2 inch 24 track analogue tape and mixed onto half inch analogue tape and mastered with no digital processing involved.
The vinyl is a true analogue cut, i.e. it hasn’t been put through a digital process during the cutting process unlike over 90% of all vinyl available today.
Nielsen Soundscan stats published by Billboard suggest vinyl LP sales in the US were up 16.3 percent, with 3.2 million units sold. According to the estimable Kevin from Avalanche Records (who knows a thing or two about stats, the universe and everything) UK vinyl sales were up 10.3% to just short of 259k.
If MBV are to be believed, no more than 26,000 UK vinyl sales are truly analogue in nature. Is studio-to-speaker analogue treatment a half-hearted raging against the dying of the light or OCD type behaviour? Or is it just the audio equivalent of a hand-dived scallop on a bed of foraged grass clippings: an enhancement to the brand that fans come to expect?
Heard that a few times haven’t you? Talk about damning with faint praise.
I’ve paid good money in to see quite a few stinkers: vanity projects, over-hyped and massively over-dubbed. I’ve seen one or two reasonable efforts. But are there any great ones?
Now you may hold views on the concert movies which might be too withering in their honesty for publication over on RR. Here, however, you may choose to pay homage to your favourite such flick, delight in cruelly exposing ambition/narcissism interlaced with a bewildering lack of talent, or diss the concept of the concert movie and yes, even a considered meh is fully acceptable. Any stance should be supported with some form of evidence or justification.
My end of year round up is now turned into the ‘spill game:
you know the score DUMP one (or all of them – see if I care)
It’s pop and it’s fun – don’t take it too seriously.
Remember, they are my most played – I’m not claiming they will change the world – I just liked them.
Band names in BOLD – for those who believe I make stuff up:
1 Stroke My Curls The Dodoz Forever I Can Purr 2012
2 Cuka (feat. Ikonoklasta) Batida Batida (feat. Mck, Circuito Feixado, Ikonoklasta, Beat Laden 2012
3 The Empty Man Whitey Lost Summer 2012
4 Genevieve Stealing Sheep Into The Diamond Sun 2012
5 Horn For The Whole Damn World Lazarus and the Plane Crash Horseplay
6 Passenger Emily Wells Mama 2012
7 Kevlar Sweethearts Diablo Swing Orchestra Pandora’s Pinata 2012
8 Be Strong (Blakkat Remix) The 2 Bears Be Strong (Deluxe Edition) 2012
9 Rat-at-at The Skints Part & Parcel 2012
10 Clap Hooded Fang Tosta Mista 2012
11 Circus Sunday Driver The Mutiny 2012
There are rarely moments for reflection in the run up to Christmas, but when you finally get to sit down in a heap, the halo of good cheer can sometimes hover uneasily above the head of the curmudgeon. Is it fair or appropriate to spoil the party with a good old fashioned rant? Let’s face it with RR on hiatus and Shane’s much anticipated fix a few days away, this perhaps may offer a chance to vent some spleen without jeopardising domestic harmony.
In a departure from the normal format, this week’s Waste Of Space opens the floor to the Spillers’ unseasonal ranting. That’s right folks, you get to deal from the bottom of the deck – it’s no trump for this hand – so please step forward into the annoying glare of the Super Trouper with your very own Waste Of Space nominations. You don’t have to stick to musical objects of derision, although some might prove entertaining.