Thursday, 17 August 2017

Sunday Mourning

The third album, Who Sold The World by Night Beats totally passed me by when it was released. I remember reading a review of it and thinking that it sounded like the kind of thing that would appeal to me, being described as a 21st Century update on the Texan garage/psych sound of the mid 60s, in the vein of 13th Floor Elevators. But then I forgot all about them until Dr John Cooper Clarke dropped a track from the album when he was sitting in for Jarvis on 6Music. The album was duly bought and has been played often ever since. You can sort of spot the influences but this is no mere nostalgic trip back to the mid 60s. The music feels both ancient and very now.

One of the highlights of the album Sunday Mourning, think Stoned and Dethroned era Mary Chain with added LSD laced Kool Aid and you are on the right track, was handed over to Jono Ma, one third of Aussie psych dance mob Jagwar Ma. The consequences although quite predicable, a strung out druggy laid back dance groove is no less brilliant, although a tad short another 5 minutes or so wouldn't have done it any harm.

Talking of Jagwa Ma, there is a remix ep out at the moment which is absolutely brilliant and include a remix by all of our favourite remixer, Andrew Weatherall. However for the third time recently his remic is not my favourite on a release, don't get me wrong it is no less than excellent but the Michael Mayer one just edges it for me as did the XAM remix of Fluxus by Early Years and the WAVNE remix of Sometimes by Sexual Objects. Could this be the law of diminishing returns in operation?

Night Beats - Sunday Mourning (Jono Ma rexix)

Wednesday, 16 August 2017

It Was Forty Years Ago Today

I am going to repeat myself below, so feel free to just skip to the 4th or 5th paragraph. That's if you actually read any of this in the first place.

It was forty years ago today that the man who is still referred to as "The King" died. I know exactly where I was when I heard the news, I was in my grandfather's house at 100 Douglas Street, Airdrie. My memory of this event has nothing to do with an early love of the vocal talents of Elvis Aaron Presley but more to do with the strange reaction of some of the people round about me when they heard the news. Staying with my grandpa at the time were my dad's American cousin  and his girlfriend, who were from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, over on an excursion to see the old country and who the previous day had presented me with the funniest rugby ball I had ever seen, apparently it was made of pigskin and also the sweetest, sickliest sweets (candy) I had ever tasted. Anyway, you would have thought that one of their closest relatives had died the way they were going on and Jimmy's girlfriend, whose name I cannot recall but whose dazzling, shiny white teeth I can see to this day was inconsolable, I may be wrong but I think that she spent the rest of her stay grief stricken.

At the time I was ambivalent to the work of the boy from Tupelo and it took me another ten years to start to appreciate him but at this time he meant crappy films on Boxing Day/Ne'erday or Bank Holidays except for the black and white one with the song Trouble and the one about the fish, I liked that and those songs. A few years later I positively loathed the man due to my brother's obsession with GI Blues, my mother encouraging him by buying the bloody soundtrack album and for a good couple of years before he found Chris De fucking Burg, it felt like Wooden Heart was being played on a loop in our house.So when I heard that punks especially the Clash and the like had no time for Elvis I naturally got on board and happily followed suit and up until I was about 19 refused to entertain anything to do with Elvis.

One Sunday afternoon in 1988 in the pub when talking about music,  one of the crowd starting waxing lyrical about Elvis, it was easy for all to see that Gilkes was serious and he wasn't a crazy rhinestone encrusted, huge belt buckle wearing guy with even huger sideboards but rather someone, who apart from his liking of the Eagles had quite good taste. I asked him to suggest where I start, so he lent me his copy of the Sun Collection, early sessions album which absolutely blew me away and then it was From Elvis in Memphis which I think is a nearly perfect album, I love the way that Elvis' voice got deeper and more soulful as he got older.

To be honest with you after those two albums, King Creole, the 68 Comeback Special, Elvis Presley and about a dozen singles I haven't delved too deeply into the back catalogue but every now and again I hear a previously a song that i have never heard before and most of the time they are brilliant. I bet that there are quite a few gems tucked in some of those crappy soundtrack albums from those terrible films that he made after coming out of the army and up until the Vegas years. I do fancy getting either a copy of the Hawaii concert or a recording of  one of the Vegas performances as on some of the clips I have seen of these the orchestration is great and also if you don't look and focus on the voice, the King still had it at that time.

Anyway, the track I am going to feature to commemorate the passing of Elvis Presley is in my opinion a gem, hidden amongst the shit on one of those soundtracks. It was also released as the flip of Your Time Hasn't Come Yet Baby released in 1968 to promote the film Speedway which also featured Nancy Sinatra which to my knowledge I have never seen but can imagine, Elvis wins girl while driving, fucks up, girl bolts, Elvis wins impossible race and in doing so wins girl back and sings big song, the end.

At the time of Elvis's death That's Alright Mama had been around for less years than Fool's Gold has been today and so the next time you wax lyrical about the great tunes of the late 8os/early 90s to some kid with a bored expression  think on,  about how we felt when old timers were banging on about the King. and we were thinking "aye was he". Although it would appear that Elvis' repertoire has stood the test of time. We will need to see if some of our "classics" fare as well.

Elvis Presley - Let Yourself Go

Tuesday, 15 August 2017

Ain't Going Nowhere

Danny Burk and his Invaders may not win any fans in the teaching fraternity for their use of grammar  but other bands in the Memphis TN area could have learned a thing or two on how to put together a scorching garage tune which may or may not be recognised as a classic in it's day but will be admired and sought after in decades to come.  This is another of those releases from that golden year for Garage Rock 1966. I think that it would be hard to pick a top 50 "Garage Greats" from that year.

Danny Burk & The Invaders - A'int Going Nowhere.

Monday, 14 August 2017

You Can't Take It

Back to work for me today after a better week in Machrihanish than was expected. We had sunshine on four out of the seven days away, the boys got to body board in some excellent waves off of Westport beach and I got to get my kite up which was great although my arms were aching afterwards.

Linda Jones has featured on the blog before with her very distinctive  gospel influenced voice. Today's track was originally from 1967 and was only ever released in France on the Warner Brothers label for some unfathomable reason. It is an uptempo screamer of a track wich Jones giving a very powerful almost belligerent vocal full of disdain for a previous lover. Great stuff. It was re-released on 7" vinyl last year on the Austrian Record Shack label.

Linda Jones - You Can't Take It

Friday, 11 August 2017

We Dream All Of The Dark Away

I know nothing about the band Fovea Hex or the remixer Abul Mogard but when Mary Anne Hobbs recommends something it is always wise to give it a listen. This is absolutely stunning and will be a great soundtrack to watching the Perseid Meteor Shower this weekend.

Saturday, 5 August 2017

Jersey Girl

A few weeks ago on the swansong post to CC's feature of Springsteen Vs The Rest he featured Springsteen with the Rigger boot firmly on the other foot with his cover of the sublime Tom Waits song Jersey Girl which took me back to early October last year when I found out in a tweet from Simon, who used to hang about this little corner of the internet, of the untimely death of Billy Franks an underrated and very under appreciated singer songwriter. The first song to come into my head obviously was Easter Parade but the next was a Youtube clip that I had stumbled upon a couple of years ago of Billy testing out a sound desk and the song he was singing was Jersey Girl which from the clip below you can see he really got into.

I really wish that I had had the pleasure of seeing Billy Franks perform live as by all accounts it was a near spiritual occasion which Davy H so eloquently described in a post on The Ghost Of Electricity here nearly nine years ago now.

Friday, 4 August 2017

It's Friday . . . Let's Dance

In Glasgow in the early to mid nineties Slam and Soma weren't the only game in town. Down the road across the M8 and in  Bath Street in the city centre a record shop called 23rd Precinct was getting in on the act with it's roster of labels and local talent. I have posted before about the absolute  Although not quite as cutting edge as the Soma, for me anyway they did release some excellent progressive house and early Trance singles. The other night I revisited some of the early highlights when I dug out my copy of House of Limbo Vol 1. Although much of it is of it's time that doesn't mean that it isn't worth listening to although I must admit the my mood was a bit nostalgic remembering the first time that I heard classics Schtoom and I Trance You.

One of the tracks that has stood the test of time is the first release by Glasgow Subby legend Harri, Skelph, a storming piece of Progressive House from 1992 and the ninth release on the Limbo label.

We are off for a week of fun and torrential rain in Machrihanish, so probably nothing to see here for a week or so.

Have a good weekend people

Harri - Skelph

Thursday, 3 August 2017


I have listened to this lovely piece of music at least twice a day since I was first put on to it when it was the headphones moment on Lauren Laverne's show on 6Music a few weeks ago. A few days ago I found out that it is being released on vinyl through Young Turks at the end of September and without hesitation went to the Piccadilly Records website and duly ordered it. So make a cup of coffee or a pot of tea and sit down and take 14 minutes out, I guarantee you will not regret it.

Wednesday, 2 August 2017

Using My Youth To Sell Fiesta's. FFS!


A few weeks ago I had a mini rant about advertisers appropriating northern soul tunes to sell all sorts of shit from grease filled protein to easy credit, And it's not just consigned to soul. I thought we had reached the low point when London Calling was used to sell air travel , although the use of that song had always only been a matter of time but no the vampires have now surpassed themselves using Loaded to sell fucking starter fucking motors first cars! How the hell does a song about total hedonism fit in with learning to drive?

Thanks a fucking lot you scumbags! All the memories I have wrapped up in the tune, like when I just got it and took it round to Stiff saying "you've got to listen to this it's amazing" and he looked at it and replied "fuck off, it's Primal Scream" and when finally persuaded to put it on the turntable he was blown away by the tune and it didn't leave the stereo in Hazel's mother's house for a week. Now when I play this I am going to have to try to block out the vision of an actress sitting in a car talking about "progress" when I should be remembering being wasted at five o'clock in the morning singing ba ba ba ba ba da while a bemused dog looks at me strangely.

Anyway, the story of Loaded is well documented and both the Weatherall and Farley mixes have been featured here so I thought that I would post the three  tunes that Weatherall sampled in his reconstruction of I'm Losing More Than I Ever Head, along with the vocal sample of Peter Fonda.

Firstly we have the drum sample which was lifted from an Italian bootleg of What I Am by Edie Brickell and The New Bohemians.

Edie Brickell and the New Bohemians - What I Am (bootleg).

Then we have the vocal sample "I don't Want To Lose Your Love"

The Emotions - I Don't Wanna Lose Your Love

and finally the horn sample which I was belting out to Barney all those years ago.

Not sure who I detest more, The Tory Party, the bankers or advertisers. It's a close call.

Tuesday, 1 August 2017

An Unreleased Gem From The Black Ark

We aren't getting much help weather wise getting a summery vibe on up here in the rainy north. I think the couple of weekends we had in May and June are going to be looked back as our summer.

So if the weather isn't going to play the game maybe we can get in the mood with some class  reggae from Lee Perry's stable. Long Enough,  for some inextricable reason was never released back in 1977 and was to be one of the tracks on Candy McKenzie's album for Island that was shelved but then finally released on Trojan in 2011. I have never bought the album as I read some reviews at the time that said that the production was awful and a lot of vocals not very good. Something that can't be said about this track which I first heard when I purchased The Return of Sound System Scratch, a collection of unreleased tracks, dubs and instrumentals all sprinkled with the Upsetter's magic dust and well worth seeking out.

In my head the sun is shining and it's 32 degrees.

Candy McKenzie - Long Enough