Wednesday 30 June 2010

Buy This Book

Today I received my copy of The Festive Fifty Number Ones, by Lee Thacker. The book is rather informative on all off the festive 50 number ones and also the All Time Festive fifty, with plenty of anecdotes from Lee and some rather wonderful illustrations.

I haven't got a lot of time, so won't review the book in depth but I though that I should bring it to your attention as I think that most people who read this blog would really love this book.

Lee also sends a cd containing the countdown from 2000 of the All Time Festive 50 which has produced a few watery eyes and lump in the throat moments while listening to it during work today.

The book can be ordered here

Chez Nous

The picture above shows what will be the family abode for the next fortnight ,when we eventually get there late Saturday evening, after leaving Lanark early Friday morning.

Situated in the heart of the Dordogne, about 10 km from Sainte-Foy le Grand, in a small hamlet of nine or ten houses surrounded by loads of vineyards which produce very, very good claret and some of the crispest, dry white wine I have ever tasted.

It is a bit of a trek, what with the drive to Dover and then 920 km the other side but it is well worth it. L and I have had the good fortune to have holidayed here on three previous occasions, as the house belongs to a family friend. The difference this time is that we are going in July,  on the previous visits it was the end of September/ beginning of October.

Being a member of the pale blue race I'm not overly fond of the heat; anything above the low twenties and I'm uncomfortable so I don't know how I'm going to handle daily temperatures of + 30 degrees. One thing for sure is I will not be napping in the hammock in the garden of an afternoon as was my want on previous occassions, I will probably be lying on the stone floor in the dinning room with the shutters firmly shut.

Anyway, going on holiday gave rise to what to do with the blog for 2 weeks, should I just shut up shop for the duration, do as JC did last year and get in some guest posters or do a load of posts in advance.. As I've done absolutely nothing about it the second idea is not even an option, the third even less so as I'm not that organised and I'm worried if I don't post anything for 2 weeks, those of you who do read this will find pastures new and not return. So I have decided to recycle some of the previous five hundred odd posts.

So apologies if you have read the posts and downloaded the tracks before but in the end I had no alternative.

Normal service will hopefully resume on Monday 19th July.

A bientot

Nancy Sinatra and Lee Hazelwood - Summer Wine

Bonnie Tyler - Lost In France

Monday 28 June 2010

My Baby Left Me

Straying into Swiss Adam territory here, however I'm not sure of SA's views on modern day rockabilly or if it's just the real deal 50s stuff that floats his boat. If you haven't checked out Bagging Area's Friday Rockabilly feature you really should, all killer no filler as they say and after 18 weeks not far off a cracking compilation although due to the length of the tracks you could probably wait 'til week 28 or 30.

Anyway, here is a cover version of My Baby Left Me,  an Arthur 'Big Boy' Crudup penned tune recorded by Elvis Presley at RCA's New York studios in 1956 which was the b side of Presley's I Want You, I Need You, I Love You.

Here it is covered by the Irish Rockabilly screamer,  Imelda May who has featured on this blog a couple of times before. Again, the track is used as a b side, this time for May's Latest single Psycho. In my opinion the b side is the stronger of the two tracks but maybe that is because I'm more familiar with it.

Imelda May - My Baby Left Me

Sunday 27 June 2010

Best Glastonbury Performance Ever

Only one man would turn down Mick Jones' amp.

Sheer Brilliance

Sunday Morning

I've just been over at Earth Capitol, where Artog has posted a rather lovely version of  Transparent Radiation by Spacemen 3, so to compliment that, I thought that I would post this.

Spiritualized - Feel So Sad (Rhapsodies)

Friday 25 June 2010

Sometimes Context Is Everything

This post was going to be about Joan As Policeman but after listening to her again I have decided that she is incredibly boring and I can't find anything enthusiastic to say about her music at all. This surprised me, as earlier in the week, I was in my used to be Swedish but then American and now Dutch owned car dealership waiting for my car which was in for new brake disks and pads in preparation for next weekend's mammoth drive ( more about which later) when a rather, at the time, pleasant track came on as I was enviously looking at the shiny new Saabs. I thought, I will do a post on that track later in the week.

So last night, I played the track, The Ride by Joan As Police Woman fully intending to then type a piece on how good this mellow track was. However after the first 30 seconds of listening to it all I could think is bland, bland, bland and couldn't wait for it to end, christ! I thought to myself this is boring. I had to play it again to confirm that this was actually the track I had listened to a couple of days previously and alas it was.

I started to ask myself, why did I think that the track was good only a couple of days earlier and the only thing that I could cone up with was,  that being the impatient git that I am, I will consider anything good if it takes my mind off of waiting about, doing nothing. But then I thought, I had seen this woman live and don't have any strong anti Joan As Police Woman feelings after the event but when I consider the performance I have absolutely no feelings about seeing her live whatsoever. I have vague recollections of her on stage at the QMU but cannot tell you anything she played or how I felt about it. What puzzles me even more is why did I then buy this single from the merchandise stall that night? I know it wasn't alcohol induced as I was driving but I have no recollection of why I made the purchase.

Anyway here is a track by the headliners that night four years ago and a single which I believe was my favourite single of the previous year, at least it is the number one track on my 2005 playlist and when I played it tonight I got the same rush as I got the first time I heard it on 6 music and every subsequent time since when I have played it.

Guillemots - Trains To Brazil.

BTW - the reason why the last few tracks have been on MediaFire and the like is because for the first time ever I have exceeded my bandwidth during the month on  which I suspect is a result of changing the posted files to MP3. If you cannot download something from earlier in the month you will have to wait 'til the 01/07 and you can blame Chocolategirl_64 and kendo as it is down to them that I changed the format.

It's Friday . . . Let's Dance

Let's have a nice bit of Techno.

Today's track is taken from a limited edition clear sampler from Sandwell District. The 12" is one of 2 samplers released on the label this month, the other a lovely shade of blue both featuring tracks which will may or may not appear on the upcoming album release.

Sandwell District are a rather anonymous record label which doesn't have a myspace page or website but does have a fax # if you want to get in touch. They have been infrequently releasing quality techno since 2002 in the tradition of Underground Resistance and Basic Chanel.

The label, it appears,  believe in giving the minimum information on their records, we do get the name of the artists but nothing so mundane as song titles.

There are a few protagonists behind the music on the label, such as DJ Caspar (Silent Servant|), Female (Pete Sutton) and US producer Dave Sumner who records under the name Function, who provides the track featured here.

The artists on the label are from New York, Los Angeles, Chicago,  Berlin and Birmingham,  Sandwell being an area in  Birmingham.

 Function - A side (aa)

Thursday 24 June 2010

There's Nothing Else To Say

Let's get back to the northern soul dug up at the weekend which was lying in the back of the cupboard. I actually feel quite guilty about this stuff out of the way and not being in any semblance of order.

There's Nothing Else To Say was first released in 1966 on the Audio Arts label and was issued a year later in the UK on the Stateside label. The track has some rather classy strings in it which  makes it a really distinctive release which brings to mind  I'm Not Strong Enough by the Four Perfections although it sounds absolutely sod all like it.

The Incredibles - There's Nothing Else To Say

Wednesday 23 June 2010

England Expects . . . What Exactly?

Whereas we just wish to fuck that we were there to be put out at the groups stages yet again!

Jamie T - Chaka Demus

The Fall Mike Joyce Session pt 2

Here are the other two tracks from last week's Fall session for Mike Joyce's Radio Show, especially for George.

The Fall - Over! Over!

The Fall - Mexico Wax Solvent (pt2)

Tuesday 22 June 2010

It Ain't Necessary

Back to the northern soul gems unearthed at the weekend during the search for Keep On Keeping On by N.F. Porter.

It Ain't Necessary is a brilliant up tempo track, written by Jerry Butler, responsible for classics such as Right Track and Moody Woman and one time member of the Impressions.

The song was released on the Chicago soul label St Lawrence Records in April 1966 and narrowly missed entering the US charts.

Mamie Galore was born Mamie Davis in 1940 and records for Sack, Thomas and Imperial records. She also  recorded Special Agent 34-24-38 for the above label and a northern rarity titled It Right Now which will set you back more than 750 quid these days. She also appeared on a few duets for Imperial with Dee Irwin.  She continued to perform in her native Mississippi until her death in 2001.

The weather we are having up here at the moment compliments this music beautifully, so you may have to endure a few more northern tunes over the next wee while as I'm listening to it at the exclusion of everything else at the moment, well everything apart from The XX, of course.

Mamie Galore - It Ain't Necessary

Monday 21 June 2010

Let Them All Eat Culture.

It has been far too long since the talents of the Boy Wonder have appeared on this blog.

In my book he is the finest song writer and one of the best guitarists of his generation. Hyperbole? maybe,  but you would have to come up with an extremely convincing argument for me to even begin to swither from this position.

There are very few songwriters amongst his contemporaries who could have written the lyrics to songs like  We Could Send Letters, The Birth Of The True,  Killermont Street and above all Good Morning Britain.

When you see him live you realise just how much of a virtuoso he is, especially when playing The Boy Wonders or Spanish Horses. If you are still to be convinced of his prowess, seek out the Vinyl Villain's footage of him letting rip during A Girl Like You at the ABC in Glasgow when he was playing guitar for Edwyn Collins.

After writing the last couple of paragraphs,  I've had to rethink the post I was in the midst of writing.

The post was supposed to bring to your attention the delights of the Frestonia album, much over looked and underrated in my opinion, I may do this at a later date. But now I just want to post Good Morning Britain as the lyrical content seem strangely pertinent in relation to goings on in the UK over the last couple of weeks but then again maybe that's just me.

Written in the darkest days of Thatcher's stranglehold on this country. Frame pens a state of the nation address in a verse for each of the four home nations of the UK. In it's original form the song was a rather powerful rallying cry made even more so with the aid of Mick Jones on rhythm guitar and vocals but later Frame would turn the song into a rather sad and moving lament. I've posted both version, see which you prefer.

Aztec Camera - Good Morning Britain

Aztec Camera - Good Morning Britain (Live From Ronnie Scott's)

Sunday 20 June 2010

Just Because

Somethings need no explanation, L came in this afternoon humming this and well ...

Every time I hear this I see the opening credits of The Pope Of Greenwich Village

Frank Sinatra - The Summer Wind

Random Covermount Track

After having to search the other day to find a misplaced northern soul single for Swiss Adam, I decided to check out what other delights were to be uncovered in that particular cupboard.

Stacked in no particular order on the shelves are well over a hundred cds which came free with music magazines. There are cds from the likes of  the much missed Jockey Slut to Q and a hell of a lot of MixMag ones.

So I decided to take an hour out and scour these cds for anything interesting but didn't get further than half a dozen when I found one from Mojo that I remember being particularly good. The Score is a collection of 20 ultra-cool soundtracks or so it says on the cd cover.

Among the delights on the cd are John Barry's theme to Midnight Cowboy, Roy Budd's Get Carter nad Watermelon Man by Mongo Santamaria. The stand out track by a country mile is by Mrs Washington & Co and is entitled You Cut Up The Clothes In The Closet of My Dreams, brilliant title or what?

Apparently the song is from a film of a musical by Melvin Van Peebles, Dont Play Us Cheap,  in which an imp and the devil take on human form and try to break up a house party in Harlem. Have never seen the film and after reading the Wiki entry I think that there are many more worthwhile things I can be getting on with that take up a hundred minutes. The track by Mrs Washington on the other hand is a soul/gospel treat which I can listen to over and over without getting bored, Mrs Washington has a rather wonderful voice.

Mrs Washington & Co - You Cut Up The Clothes In The Closet Of My Dreams

Saturday 19 June 2010

The Fall Sessions

The Fall recorded 24 sessions over twenty six years for John Peel and it is an established fact that many of the definitive versions of some of the best Fall tracks were laid down in the BBC's studios in Maida Vale. In fact the first airing a lot of the tracks was during these sessions which raised the level of expectation every time Peel stated "tonight we have a new session from the Fall".

When John Peel, sadly died, way too early,  it looked as if it would also be the end of Fall sessions and I'm not aware of any that have been recorded with UK radio stations since.

That is until now, because on Wednesday the Fall recorded a session for Mike Joyce's Coalition Chart Show which was broadcast the following evening on

Although the session includes  no new tracks it does contain 2 quite brilliant versions of Mexico Wax Solvent and a cover of Frank Zappa's Hungry Freaks, Daddy, a live favourite and only previously available on The Last Night At The Hammersmith Palais cd/dvd.

Although Joyce is no Peel, there is an alright interview with Smith interspersed between the session tracks here.

Here are a couple of the tracks from the session.

The Fall - Mexico Wax Solvent (part1)

The Fall - Hungry Freaks,  Daddy

Weird moment of the week was hearing Kirsty Young announce on Desert Island Discs on Friday, " the Fall and Rowche Rumble", even though it was Frank Skinner on DID it was still very very strange hearing Kirsty Young say this and Andrew Collins played Edinburgh Man, this morning on Radio 6.

Saturday Half Rant

I started off in a really good mood this morning, got up early. pottered about, ripped a load of old northern vinyl and a few new techno twelves that I purchased recently to mp3. I then started to sort out the singles which I had taken to the Flying Duck and put them all back in the correct boxes. All of this before anyone else in the house stirred.

L went out got the paper and rustled together breakfast which I eagerly tucked into and I turned to the Comment section of the Guardian when after reading Polly Toynbee's article my mood started to change. By the time I had read Ian McMillan's excellent piece I had become thoroughly depressed.

For the past couple of weeks the feeling of foreboding has been growing in me over the policies being unveiled by the Coalition of the social climbers and the power hungry. The idea of any clown with enough money being able to open a school and set the curriculum makes me feel very sorry for parents south of the border, Education being a devolved matter means that this will not apply to Scotland and in my opinion would never have a snowball in hell's chance of being brought into statute if ever seriously proposed here.

The projects which were scrapped during the week such as the proposed hospital in Hartlepool and the withdrawal of the loan to Forgemasters in Sheffield reek of the punitive measures Thatcher used to heap on Scotland for not voting Tory. Remember the Poll Tax? It was introduced here first.

Another sight which made me want to retch this week was that muppet Osbourne in his finery, talking bollocks about fairness to all those other gits at the Lord Mayor's dinner. None of whom will be affected by library closures, public sector job losses, cuts in benefits and the rest of the painful but necessary measures that will be implemented next week.

On Tuesday we will find out to what extent that "we are all in it together" and I would be more inclined to bet on England winning the World Cup than on the chances of even the slightest of tax rises for those who can most afford it.

And you know what,  Clegg and his cronies will not even have the decency to be ashamed of sharing the same benches as the Bullingdon Boys.

I will stop now, as I'm beginning to get even more depressed and if you are now more pissed of than you were before reading this then I apologise.

King Creosote - Not One Bit Ashamed

Friday 18 June 2010

That Beatin' Rhythm

Earlier tonight while digging around looking for N F Porter's classic Keep On Keeping On for Swiss Adam, I came across some excellent northern tracks that I haven't played in far too long. So I think for the next few days you will have to endure a few storming, under played (in this house anyway) northern classics.

First up is an absolute belter of a dancer from Richard Temple, the lyrics of which completely sum up the appeal of northern soul.

That Beatin' Rhythm was released on the Mirwood record label. An instrumental version called Cigarette Ashes credited to Jimmy Conwell also exisits. Jimmy Conwell and Richard Temple are the same person.

This northern soul stuff is all very confusing.

Apologies for the crackles and the fact that it sticks at the end, the record is quite old.

Richard Temple - That Beatin' Rhythm

Jimmy Conwell - Cigarette Ashes

It's Friday . . . Let's Dance

The sun is shinning, hopefully, so here is a track that has a real sunny vibe for me probably due to the Prince Buster sample.

This weekend I will be mostly drinking rum, I think.

Have a good weekend,  people

Mint Royale - The Sexiest Man In Jamaica

Wednesday 16 June 2010

Do You Mind?

Here is another track I never got round to playing last Saturday night.

I really love The XX, the album hasn't  been off the turntable or ipod much over the past few months, to such an extent that if I had to scrobble the iPod, I think that they would now be giving The Fall a run for their money, okay slight exaggeration but only slight.

Here they take Kyla's funky R & B track,  strip it down to its basics and produce a moody but still funky, in it's own way track that's absolutely astounding. This band has a knack with covers, check out their version of Womack and Womack's Teardrops, or Hot Like Fire originally by Aaliyah which can both be found on the same ep as Do You Mind?

The ep could only be purchased at the gigs on the last tour, the Edinburgh leg of which I was unable to get a ticket for. I had to resort to getting the 7" off of ebay, spending a small fortune for it into the bargain and to make matters worse it is now going buy it now for half of what I paid for it!

The XX - Do You Mind?

Tuesday 15 June 2010

Wonderful Night

I've always quite liked Norman Cook, not overly keen on his other half. I'm sure she's a lovely girl but always strikes me as a pain in the arse. The fatboy on the other hand seems the sort of guy you could go for a couple of pints and talk absolute bollocks with. I would also like to get a look at his record collection.

As I've said before, when his first Fatboy Slim track Everyone Needs A 303 in 1995, he brought something back in to dance music which had been sadly lacking for a couple of years, some humour and not taking yourself too seriously. I will even forgive him for some of those lurid shirts and being the catalyst for so many crap records being released in the name of Big Beat,  on the back of the Praise You and Weapon Of Choice alone.

He has produced some amazing singles such as Gangsta Tripping, Going Out Of My Head etc and has sampled everybody from the Just Brothers to John Martyn to great effect.

This track is from the forth Fatboy Slim album Palookaville and features the rapping talent of Lateef The Truth Speaker.

Fatboy Slim - Wonderful Night

Monday 14 June 2010

Fish, Which Is My Favourite Dish

At the risk of sounding like an old git, although probably the term is quite correct, I never got gangster rap or gansta if you prefer. It never appealed, probably because I'm not from da hood. On the other hand this genre of hip-hop sells shit loads and a considerable amount over here in the UK so it must connect with a lot of people not just American inner city Afro-Americans.

I liked the occasional track by Tupac, Biggie Smalls and further back N.W.A but not in the way that I absorbed the hip-hop of the late 80's and early nineties. I bought everything by Public Enemy, loved a lot of it. The anti-semitism I abhorred. I could understand why Chuck D and crew were angry but the military fatigues and Uzis concerned me. I never went to the show in the Barrowlands but I can't imagine that there were many in the audience who fit the bill to join the S1W (Security Of The First World)

Even more than Public Enemy I loved the sound of Eric B & Rakim.  Eric B's beats were always sparse and Rakim has got to be the most laid back rapper ever. The first time I heard Paid In Full was Coldcut's seminal remix of Paid In Full and I was blown away and decided that I had to own it. I went into Glasgow the following weekend and bought the 12" single from Fopp.

When I got it home, I played the remix 2 or 3 times back to back. I eventually flipped over the record and was more than pleasantly surprised by the original album mix which if anything, is better than the Coldcut's mix. Everything from the Dennis Edwards sample used as the bass line to the non flashy but amazingly effective scratching just fits together perfectly. Plus we also get to find out Rakim's favourite food as a bonus.

The other great thing about Eric B & Rakim records were the great remixes to be found on the vinyl,  with the hippest of mixers all adding something to the duo's already class tracks. I think it is due to the sparseness of the originals that leaves a lot of space for remixers to put their stamp on it. Whether that be The Wild Bunch's take on Move The Crowd or Double Trouble's sample tastic I Know You Got Soul.

Included here is the late Derek B's much over looked but none too shabby interpretation of Paid In Full which will always be in the shadow of Coldcut's groundbreaking mix,  which at the time Eric B was rather disparaging about until the "dead presidents" started rolling in.

Eric B & Rakim - Paid In Full

Eric B & Rakim - Paid In Full (Derek B's Urban Respray)

Sunday 13 June 2010

Superstar DJs? Hardly

I've spent worse Saturday nights.

I think that last night went quite well, thousands weren't locked out by any manner of means and those that did attend were mostly friends but on a whole it was alright.

There was only one train crash, by me of course.  The Third Degree single decided that it would jump all over the place and then stick, which is really annoying as it played fine an hour or so ago when I tried it out on my deck. I also found out the hard way that my copy of Too Much Too Young, is,  in a word, fucked.  To cap it all,  inexplicably near the end of the night the sound kept cutting out from a couple of the speakers but sorted itself out for the last 45 mins.

The playing of the records was mainly done by myself and JC, although ANCB did do a turn and has decided that he will participate fully in July. The music policy could be said to have been eclectic, however anybody who had turned up to hear any dubstep would have been awfy disappointed, a phrase a guy I used to know never got sick of saying, as it just never seemed to be the right time for it. In fact there were quite a few records which before hand I had down as definites for me to play that never got an airing.

If you are interested in what was played, being the sad sacks that we are we kept a note and I or JC will post just as soon as I can decipher the hieroglyphics and type it it out.

Here is one of those tracks that I really wanted to play but never got around to.

Thanks to everyone who came along. Please come to the next one, on July 10th which will be hosted by JC and ANCB as I will be on holiday but hopefully they will let me back on in August.

Plan B - She Said

Saturday 12 June 2010

Friday 11 June 2010

It's Friday . . . It's The 500th Post

500 posts, christ!

I never thought that it would last more than 10. Any of you who have read this nonsense from the start deserve a medal and to ask yourself. "Haven't I got something better to do with my time?"

I was trying to find something epic by Weatherall to feature on this post but i haven't been able to get this track out of my head for the past few days.

Have a good weekend people.

Leftfield - Phat Planet

ps  Did I mention that something which may turn out to be a good night but on the other hand  may as easily be an unmitigated disaster is happening tomorrow night in the Flying Duck on Renfield St in Glasgow. If you're interested in how it turns out why not pop along,  after all it's free and we may let you back out if you ask nicely!

Thursday 10 June 2010

Happy Lanimers!

About 100% of you will not know what I'm going on about but today was Lanimer Day in Lanark.

Between you and me it's a big Gala Day, with a twist, it's held on a Thursday as oppossed to the tradition of a Gala Day being on a Saturday. But never, ever tell a Lanarkian that, to them it is so much more. So much so that, and this is the truth they tried to get Thatcher to re arrange the 1987 General Election because it was going to fall on the same day as Lanimers, I shit you not.

Anyway, I have never seen as many underage drunks in my life as I saw today. You see another of the quaint customs, is that the pubs open at six in the morning and that the law of the land, stating that you cannot drink openly in the street is waivered on this day and so you see teams of teenagers openly wandering around the town drinking Buckfast and MD20/20 with impunity.

Still, it's all for the kids.

Nouvelle Vague - Friday Night, Saturday Morning

2 Days To Go

Well 2 days to go until JC and I force the dubious pleasure of our combined record collections on the unsuspecting patrons of The Flying Duck . I have to admit that I'm a little apprehensive about the whole thing now.

Last night the first thing I did when I got back from Belfast was check my singles box to see if there were any that should come out and I suspect that,  that will not be the last time I will do that before Saturday.

Due to the fact that I will be going into Glasgow by train and it is a fair old hike from Central Station to the Flying Duck, I have limited myself to one singles box (which holds around 200 7"s) and my Ninja Tunes Wax Sack which I can just about force 60 twelves into. My mate C, said to me earlier in  the week, "are you sure you've got enough tunes?" which got me fretting and trying to calculate exactly how much music I was taking with me, then trying to deduct the multiple singles by some artists and how much of certain genres there was until I realised that that way lay madness and to just lighten up and if I end up playing something twice or a couples of track by The Jesus and Mary Chain, or a few too many northern soul tracks then so be it.

There is one track which I know for a fact I will not play, although I would love to, to see if it garners the same reaction nearly thirty years after the last time I heard it out.

As I mentioned before when I first came to Lanark, the two guys I got in tow with Stiff and Span were punks,  I also liked punk but  had a love of Heavy Metal which neither of them could fathom.

Anyway, once a month, a disco was held in the Guide Hall which we would attend with all the other primary 7s, first and second years. One particular night stands out for a couple of reasons.

Firstly, it was the night that the three of us went wearing ill fitting, by which I mean about 3 sizes to big for us, WWII British Army Battle Dress Jackets that stank and were as jaggy as hell.  We thought we were so cool. The reason that we had bought these, I think,  was that we had recently seen Julian Cope wearing this type of jacket on Top Of The Pops when Teardrop Explodes were on doing Reward, although I could be completely wrong about this.

I will get to the point of the post eventually.

The second reason that this night stands out in particular is because one of the older punks took along a copy of Hanx! the live album by SLF. The guy spent half the night haranguing the DJ (Turps) to put the album on and when the dj eventually capitulated, true to form Turps played the wrong track.  Instead of playing Alternative Ulster he put on Johnny Was.

Those of us who had studied this album were incredulous, if that is possible for an eleven year old,  because we knew that it was a long track and not the sort of tune that was likely to win over the unconverted. A few brave boys tried to pogo but even with the stamina of youth they all gave up about half way through leaving a deserted dance floor and half clearing the hall but give Turps his due, to our astonishment he played the whole thing, all ten minutes of it.

And there you have in a convoluted way, the point of the post, I will not be playing Johnny Was but would secretly love to, to see what kind of response it would get now.

So,  if your in the town on Saturday night why not come along and not hear me playing Johnny Was.

The version posted is not the version from Hanx but is still a live rendition, recorded some twenty six years later in 2006 at Glasgow Barrowlands.

SLF - Johnny Was

Wednesday 9 June 2010

Just Because

This came on the ipod earlier today. It always makes me feel melancholic, nearly as much as That Summer Feeling.

Somehow I don't think think that Gordon McIntyre believes that "someday we will be millionaires".

Ballboy - Dumper Truck Racing

Tuesday 8 June 2010

Our Time

I'm back over the water in Belfast for a couple of days, so in the meantime here is my favourite track by another uber cool indie band from the early noughties.

Yeah Yeah Yeahs - Our Time

Monday 7 June 2010

The Kills

Way before they got their celebrity endorsement as a result of Jaimie Hince sleeping with model about town and celebrity ligger, Kate Moss I stumbled upon the Kills one night in June 2003 in King Tuts.

My interest was piqued in the band earlier that year when I read about them somewhere and they were being grouped in with my favourite new live band of the time The Raveonettes. So I bought the first ep Black Rooster which had been released the previous year and the follow-up Fuck The People. The sound was raw and kind of bluesy but unlike the The White Stripes who certain parts of the music press were saying that they were copying (the Kills had yet to be crowned with the mantle of cool), I felt there was a real edge and scuzzyness to it.

Live this rawness and edge was palpable and the air hung heavy with the apparent sexual tension between the two members Hince and Alison Mosshart ( I can not bring myself to call them V.V. and Hotel). At times it looked as if the duo were ready to fight and at other times I thought that they were going to get it on right there on the stage at King Tuts and all the way through Mosshart smoking like a lum. It was one of the best performances I've ever seen. As with the Raveonettes, the size of the Wah Wah Hut seemed to suit the Kills.

Their debut album, Keep On Your Mean Side, is an outstanding example of less is more with just the guitars, drum machine and the vocals,  it is raw and exciting with the underlying threat of violence which you expect to break out at any minute.

About 18 months after seeing them in Tut's I saw them again in Oran Mor but this time they failed to pack the same punch as before. I don't know if it was the venue or the fact that they had been so good the first time but I came away disappointed.

The same can be said about the two subsequent albums.  The law of diminishing returns seems to apply. The second album, No Wow is good but doesn't quite reach the heights of the first and the third, Midnight Boom, more or less washed over me and I don't think that I have revisited it more than half a dozen times.

It may just be me being fickle or contrary due to the celebrity endorsement but I truly don't think that the band have ever surpassed Keep On Your Mean Side.

The Kills - Wait

Moving Targets

How about a rather nice piece of extremely short, jangly indie pop to start the week off with.

This is the sort of thing that guys in Breton shirts, anoraks and brown suede hush puppies would listen to in their bedrooms while watching subtitled films wondering why they never had a girl friend back in the 80's, apart from the fact that this was released in 2007 as part of an ep entitled Nothing Matters When We're Dancing on the rather good Cloudberry Records.

I really miss Flip!

The Jealous Sea - Moving Targets

Sunday 6 June 2010

The Definitive Version? You Decide

On yesterday's post I mentioned Every Little Bit Hurts and, how good Ms Holloway's version of the Ed Cobb song, the man also responsible for penning Tainted Love, was.

Swiss Adam in the comments section mentioned a version of the song by The Clash that if the truth be known I have always been rather ambivalent towards.

Last night I decided to play all three versions of the song and have to admit that there is not much in it between The Small Faces version  and Brenda Holloway's, although the Motown version still just shades it,  in my opinion. The big surprise is that the version by Stummer et al has it's merits too, however fails to pack the emotional punch of the other two and is probably why it remained unreleased until CBS were looking for extra product to make the Clash On Broadway boxset more appealing ("turning rebellion into money", indeed.)

So here are the three versions of the song that I posses. I know that these are not the only recorded versions of this song that exist. I think that their is a version by The Jam out there but I remain to be convinced that this is a song which would gain anything being covered by Weller and Co..

You decide

Brenda Holloway - Every Little Bit Hurts

The Small Faces - Every Little Bit Hurts

The Clash - Every Little Bit Hurts

Saturday 5 June 2010

An Extremely Underrated Voice.

Another sunny day up here.

Time for some up tempo northern soul, from a woman I reckon is one of the most underrated artists who recorded on the Motown label, Brenda Holloway. She started recording for the label in 1964. Her first single was the absolutely amazing Every Little Bit Hurts. If you are only familiar with the Small Faces version I suggest you seek out the Holloway one, it will blow you away.

Holloway didn't receive the commercial success of some of her colleagues and friends on the label did, however she was a familiar face on the TV, appearing on shows such as Shindig. In 1965 she was asked to bee the supporting act for the Beatles on their US tour and was the opening act when the Beatles played Shea Stadium. She is best known in northern circles for Think It Over (Before You Break My Heart) a.k.a Reconsider, which amazingly was never released back in 1966 and was unearthed some considerable time later by Peter Lowrie.

She retired from performing in 1969, however in 1992 she came out of retirement and started recording and performing again after the death of her friend Mary Wells and is still performing to this day, I think that she has been over here in the last couple of years performing at one of Togetherness gatherings.

Here she is with a classic northern soul track, written by Ashford and Simpson and released in 1967. The track is so upbeat until you listen to the lyrics. An absolute belter and that is a fact.

Brenda Holloway - Starting The Hurt All Over Again

Friday 4 June 2010

It's Friday . . . Let's Dance

I think that a little bit of minimal tech house is the order of the day. There must be some geek somewhere who's job it is, to dream up new sub genres for House Music.

Anyway this is a great track, it starts off sounding like a rip off of French Kiss and just keeps on building ever so slightly for just over 10 mins. It's just the sort of easy going tempo needed in this sticky heat (this post was conceived on Thursday night, so apologies, if the weather has turned cold and dreich again).

Levon Vincent hails from NYC, has been djing since 1991 and runs two labels Novel Sound and Deconstruct Music labels.

Late Night Jam was released last year on the German label Ostgut Ton.

Levon Vincent - Late Night Jam

Tuesday 1 June 2010

Lucky Soul

I think that we shall stick with retro 60s grooves that would have appealed to the 3 button suit and bowling shoe wearing end of the scooter riding fraternity.

Lucky Soul are a band from South London who first came to my attention when their first single, My Brittle Heart was made single of the week in the Guardian.  I sought out their myspace page listened to the track, purchased the single and have bought everything ever since, except the new album which was released a couple of months ago now, only due to the fact that I haven't got round to it yet. The tracks that I have heard, Woah Billy and White Russian Doll are as good as anything on the first album, The Great Unwanted, with the exception of the track posted here which I think is absolutely stunning but not typical of the rest of the album which is rather more upbeat.

If the band were about back in the day I can imagine the album sitting next to the Makin' Time albums in Dave The Mod's record collection.

Lucky Soul - Baby I'm Broke