Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Two turntables and no microphone

Shameless plug...shameless plug...shameless plug....but if you come down tomorrow night I'm sure you'll hear this! Playing three times in four days meant that I played a heck of a lot of records of all types of genres (even Toto!), but this track seemed to fit into every set. Just lovely.

- I Get Around (Midnight Juggernauts mix)

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Sunday, May 20, 2007

Shellac @ Koko

All photos courtesy of Jonathan Dadds

Last Thursday saw Steve Albini and his Shellac roadshow come to town with one of the most impressive concerts I've seen in years. Highlights? 'Prayer To God' and 'Squirrel Song' from 1000 Hurts were greeted with cheers (well, as many cheers as the audience, the majority being mostly male music geeks like myself, could muster). New tracks 'The End Of Radio' and 'Steady As She Goes' were also received like old favourites, possibly because they'd been floating around the highways and byways of the web for almost two years, the only evidence of new material from the band.

A hilarious five minute diatribe by drummer Todd Trainer was another memorable moment, especially as he started by talking about AC/DC and ended with a shout out to the Costa coffee shop across from the venue, where the fuel which gave power to his bizarre rant originated.

Bassist Bob Weston was also on fine form, leading the now traditional 'Q and A' sessions with the audience between songs. Subject matter included his beloved Chicago baseball team ('How's the Cubs doing? The Cubs? They lost 6 and 5 to the Mets last night') to rejecting song requests (Audience member: 'Play Crow!', to which Weston responded 'If you shout it out, I guarantee we won't play it').

Most importantly though, the one question which everybody wanted an answer to ensured that the long seven year wait between Shellac albums would soon be over.

'When's the album coming out? June 5'

So to celebrate, head over to the very fine Something I Learned Today for a taster from Excellent Italian Greyhound (the post might be eighteen months old, but that's how long these tracks have been around for).

And here's my highlight of the night.

Shellac - Squirrel Song

* Do you care about the future of internet radio? Don't let the US House of representatives assist Clear Channel and other corporate behemoths water down the choice of music on the airwaves. Sign the petition at Save Net Radio and help keep internet radio alive.

* The new Nine Inch Nails album is certainly a vast improvement on With Teeth, and it looks like Trent has continued his knack for finding the right folks to re-work his vignettes on machines, modern life & 'merica. Come on down Dave 'Switch' Taylor - your leather pants await!

Grab the Switch remix at I Heart Comix.

Here's the fine Bush-baiting original.

Nine Inch Nails
- Capital G

Monday, May 14, 2007

Farewell Blades (and God too)

Poor Sheffield United. I can't say I'm one of Neil Warnock's biggest fans, but he does give good soundbites, making a comedic alternative to most of the cliche-laden managers in the Premiership (apart from the 'special one' - everything that comes from his mouth is a joke, especially his post Champions League semi-final comments). Who would have thought a decade ago that relegation from the top-flight would cost 30 million quid?

In other action, God bowed out without a goal.

Luckily, Harry saved the day and may have landed a seat on the plane to Athens in the process. Now, if he could just nick one in the final....

Enjoy Bolton's retirement home Robbie. We'll always have the memories, right?

Bob Dylan
- You're Gonna Make Me Lonesome When You Go
Mick Harvey - I Have Come To Tell You That I'm Going (Serge Gainsbourg cover)

Wednesday, May 09, 2007

Elliott Smith - New Moon

This week sees the release of Elliott Smith's New Moon, a collection of demos and rare tracks from 1995-97, and unlike posthumous releases from other artists the tracks featured on the two disc set have been left in the state Smith recorded them in (apart from the odd digital polish and shine). Hearing these songs, many for the first time, makes me realise just how gifted Smith was, a musician with a knack for lacing his songs with simple melodies while his confessional and often bittersweet lyrics floated on top, waiting patiently for the nearest passerby to come along and extend a hand. With New Moon, it's safe to say that Smith's passion and talent won't ever be left to drown because he touched far too many of us to ever let such a thing happen.

Elliott Smith
- Miss Misery (early version)

Elliott Smith - New Disaster

Buy New Moon from Amazon.

Wednesday, May 02, 2007

Architecture in Helsinki / Meltdown 2007

* New Architecture In Helsinki? Now that's something to get excited about. 'Heart It Races' is the first single from the band's new album, Places Like This and it's a calypso-tinged tune that strolls up to you in a charity store college b-ball tee, skinny black jeans, and Chuck Taylors before pulling back your hair and whispering in your ear, 'Hey man, let's get some cider, grab a frisbee and head to the park'. Summer all over.

Hear it at AIH's MySpace page.

As a special treat, I've been sent the DJ/Rupture remix of 'Heart It Races' featuring Lee G, and it's even toastier. Buss it.

Architecture in Helsinki - Heart It Races (DJ/Rupture's Ital Hymn remix feat Mr. Lee G)

Pre-order 'Heart It Races' from Polyvinyl.

Jarvis (taken by Phil Sharp)

* Motorhead, Melanie or Gonzales? Jarvis, don't make me choose! This year's Meltdown festival, at the refurbished Southbank centre in June, is being curated by Mr Cocker himself and it's certainly an eclectic collection of artists who've been invited by the ex-Pulp singer to perform. The first evening features Lemmy and the gang, a folk icon, and the quirky pianist/MC/singer. Three wonderful acts, but in three venues and all on the same night! And on June 18 there's another difficult decision - Sunn O))) or ex-13th Floor Elevators singer Roky Erickson? Thankfully, JMC will be performing solely on Friday June 23rd (well if you reform you've got to have a MySpace, let alone a website...).

Then there's Devo, John Barry, Don Letts, Clinic......oh Jarvis, you do spoil us. Tickets on sale from Thursday May 3rd (click here).

Jarvis Cocker - Black Magic

The 13th Floor Elevators
- You're Gonna Miss Me (available on The Psychedelic Sounds of The 13th Floor Elevators)

The Jesus and Mary Chain - Reverence (Live in New York, 1992)

* What's the time? It's time....for another Beastie Boys record.

Instrumental too, as The Mix-Up is sans vocal if you know what I mean. Here's the tracklist.

1. B For My Name
2. 14th St. Break
3. Suco De Tangerina
4. The Gala Event
5. Electric Worm
6. Freaky Hijiki
7. Off The Grid
8. The Rat Cage
9. The Melee
10. Dramastically Different
11. The Cousin Of Death
12. The Kangaroo Rat

What's with the rat fascination anyway? The Mix-Up drops on June 18.

* And it's bye bye to the Special One and the Blues.

Number six in Athens?