Tuesday, January 30, 2018
Like MGMT's Time To Pretend's twisted sister Ezra Furman's latest, the radio friendly (ahem) Suck The Blood From My Wound is, well, bloody brilliant. I was lucky enough to see him live a couple of years back (yes, I know, me at a live gig...) and he's the kind of gutsy, give it 100%, get it all out there artist that the world's quite frankly crying out for these days. There's a touch of Springsteen about him, albeit a Springsteen in a bit of lippie and a feather boa, and it's not difficult to imagine him playing a ruddy great stadium one day. Oh alright then, maybe not, but we can all live in hope eh?
Thursday, January 25, 2018
There will be lots written about the legendary front man of The Fall over the coming hours, days and weeks (there already has been) by people far more eloquent and knowledgeable than me (not difficult I'll grant you). Of course his death wasn't unexpected. Increasingly frail he'd been forced to cancel a number of shows recently but somehow you hoped that Mr G. Reaper Esq. would simply give up and walk away leaving Smith to carry on ranting and raving until the end of time.
Sadly it's not to be but his passing is something that should be celebrated not mourned. I never met him but I saw The Fall on three separate occasions, in the 90s, noughties and 10s, I bought a lot of the albums and lapped up any interview I could find with the man. Whilst you might not have agreed with everything he said he was totally true to himself throughout his 40+ year career and absolutely, resolutely refused to suck up to anyone, fans or enemies alike. In fact often the more people gushed over him the more cantankerous he was with them.
Clearly he lived life exactly the way he wanted to off stage as well, drinking, smoking, shagging (presumably...although the first two might well have interfered with the last one) and in this increasingly PC, health obsessed, fun fearing world he was like a breath of fresh...okay, maybe not fresh but you get my drift...air. We really will never see his like again. Of course I've not even mentioned the music yet. Confrontational, bizarre, unique, cult listening that somehow remained surprisingly listenable to, at least to my gig damaged ears.
And, no matter what the line up (The Fall ploughed through over 60 members), it always, always sounded like The Fall. RIP Mr Smith.
Tuesday, January 23, 2018
Depending on your age the chances are that you'll know Billy Joel for one of three tracks, Piano Man, Uptown Girl or We Didn't Start The Fire, but you might not be familiar with the distinctly Magical Mystery Tour era Beatles-ish Scandinavian Skies. I've only got it on CD (remember them?) but I can imagine it'd sound particularly mind melting on vinyl. Oh well, there's another good excuse to trawl a few more record fairs this year.
Friday, January 19, 2018
Okay he may be better known as an actor and all round chap than a singer but Peter Wyngarde, who's passed away at the grand old age of 90...or maybe 87...or possibly 93...most of his life is a little shrouded in mystery...did release one extraordinary record in the year of my birth. If you've not heard it you can listen to most of the tracks on You Tube, you may want to play Golden Throats through your earplugs though. Ahem.
Whilst we're on the subject of the lovely Mr Wyngarde let's have the shagadelic Jason King theme tune too. Groovy baby.
Thursday, January 18, 2018
Tuesday, January 16, 2018
If you're a fan of troubled Irish musicians yesterday must have been particularly bitter sweet. Early in the evening the death of The Cranberries lead singer Dolores was announced at just 46 years old. No more information has yet been released but sadly given her recent well documented troubles it may well not have been natural causes. Then just a few hours later Shane MacGowan had a bit of a knees up for his 60th birthday and Sinead O'Conner (now going by the name of Magda Davitt) showed up.
Like Dolores Sinead/Magda's had a torrid few years so let's hope the huge outpouring of support she received goes some way to aiding her recovery. Amazingly MacGowan himself even managed to sing a song, albeit with some support from Nick Cave. It has to be said that Shane really doesn't look good but then again at 60 years old and with 40 odd years of non stop boozing behind him it's quite frankly a miracle he's still here at all.
Friday, January 12, 2018
Sadly it's a little too far for me to make these days but if you're in or around the Stourbridge area tonight get along to Claptrap for a trio of bands, including the incomparable The Day Ends. It's just £2 to get in too. TWO ROTTEN QUID. Now that's what I call a January sale.
I suspect The Day Ends may well have a totally new set and line up tonight, that's the kind of band they are, but here's a Sleaford Mods baiting cut from last year.
Wednesday, January 10, 2018
Many will know that today's the second anniversary of the death of David Bowie but it's also the date on which Colin Vearncombe (aka Black) suffered the devastating brain injury (in a car crash) that ended his life a couple of weeks later. I'm reasonably convinced that, had he lived, Colin was ripe for rediscovery. Of course Wonderful Life's a pretty great song to be remembered for but his entire back catalogue's littered with low key but mournfully beautiful tracks, like this little gem:
"Life should never feel small"...wise words. RIP.
Tuesday, January 09, 2018
Pretty sure I'll be preaching to the converted (or quite possibly the perverted) here but if you haven't heard some of the fruits of The Go! Team's new album do your ears a favour and get stuck in. Pretty much every track they've ever done's an absolute belter and this one, Mayday, is quite possibly the best since the mighty T.O.R.N.A.D.O
Thursday, January 04, 2018
Okay so the tune's been around for a few weeks now but the album's out this month so that's a good enough excuse to pop Tune-Yards' Look At Your Hands up on here. It's a little bit soulful, it's a little bit 80s...well quite a lot 80s actually...and more than a little bit brilliant. If nothing else it should make this first week back at work just that bit easier. Enjoy!
PS: Here's the rather awesome vid for ABC, another track from the album. Probably best not to microwave your own head though...just a suggestion.
Tuesday, January 02, 2018
Chuffed to hear that Marc Almond's finally been recognised in the New Year's Honours list for his almost 40 year career and charity work with Headway. Okay so it might not be a Knighthood yet but at this rate he'll be Sir Marc before he gets his telegram from the Queen / King...