Sunday, 14 December 2008

Nick Miller - Quitters

Mikwaukee based troubadour Nick Miller kindly sent me his acoustic demo disc, which is pretty sweet. Quitters is a great track, and his voice reminds me a little at points of Jeff Buckley and sometimes a little of Anthony of "and the Johnsons" fame. It varies a great deal in the demo, from the high falsetto I've just been describing to a gruff low tenor, which is either interesting or inconsistent depending on how generous you are.  

The music reminds me a little of Nick Drake and I say that fully aware that literally everyone compares literally everything acoustic with a male voice to Nick Drake. Listen to it, I think you might agree. 

One question: Nick, dearest, why are you wearing sunglasses indoors? Actually, two questions: what are you knitting?! 

Thursday, 11 December 2008

Frank Bango - Angela Eagleton

I recently interviewed Frank Bango, who I've raved about before twice. His responses exceeded my expectations: they were really very interesting. It's all on, which is a site I've got involved with recently. Clicky here.

Monday, 8 December 2008

The Kinks - Waterloo Sunset

Here's a no frills blog post for you - this is a great song, one that can and should be appreciated by masses.

Thursday, 4 December 2008

The Spolkestra - Open Arms

Warning - this post contains enthusing. Having said that, so do 95% of all the rest of the posts on this blog. Not sure why I'm bothering to warn you, to be honest.

I saw the Spolkestra on Saturday in London and if anything I'm even more in love with them than I was when I first heard the album. It's magnificently complex music. In the back of my head I was slightly worried that they wouldn't be able to recreate the intricacy of the album when live but they proved the back of my head to be wrong. Yey! It is probably going to be my gig of the year simply because I have never heard anything like it live. There is something symphonic in the ambition of this band and I love them for it. I went on about it last time I wrote about them but I really cannot recommend the 14 minute epic "Trio Together" enough. I really want to post it but feel bad as it's an album exclusive on iTunes.

Here's the title track of the Open Arms EP, released earlier this year and available everywhere, particularly if you have iTunes and a wi-fi connection...

My Little Pony - Macgyver Blues

My Little Pony are from Oslo. I like My Little Pony so much that yesterday I actually found myself idly contemplating moving to Oslo, which would perhaps result in some of Oslo's talen rubbing off on me. Obviously that's ridiculous and I soon realised that I was thinking out of my ass. Oslo is 1,295 miles away from my house (thanks Google). I don't know anyone there and I don't speak a word of Norwegian. But My Little Pony are awesome, just pure distilled awesome. It's charming indie-pop sung (primarily) in a twee indie boy voice. The words are observant, wise and witty, as these ones from track 3, "Comic Relief", demonstrate:
In a television show from the crazy wild wild west
One of the characters stand out from the rest
Cause he's bald or he's friendly or sometimes comes late
And the others always tell him he's slightly overweight.

And in this other programme that I like to watch
From back in the days when everything was top-notch
With his funny accent, now that's an old trick
He's the foreign exchange student who never gets a chick.

But if we ask him about our motif or religious belief
He wouldn't have an answer and not cause he's brief
He's just the comic relief.

Sometimes I like to make people laugh
and at the place where I work I'm the youngest of the staff
And they do seem to like me though I think they're all my boss
But to me that doens't matter, authority's no great loss

And although I'm not [can't work this word out] or commander in chief
They all need me like golden leaf
I guess I am the comic relief.

I guess we need it in this world of ours
Where everything is so serious that sometimes we forget to smile to each other
It might be false belief
I think we all need a comic relief.

[I transcribed those myself so they're not perfect.] 
What really impresses me is that these are (presumably) written by someone for whom English is a second language. Anyone who can write that well in their second language deserved muchos kudos. I could discuss a million other bits I love but that would cheapen it (though I can't resist pointing you towards the chorus of track 5). Listen to Macgyver Blues and then buy the album. It might be the best thing you do all year. 

P.S. I don't think it's been released in the UK yet but you can definitely get it from iTunes.

Wednesday, 12 November 2008

Clor - Good Stuff

Ahh Clor, I miss you. You made one of my favourite dancey indie albums and then just disappeared without so much as a farewell. It makes me very sad.

Check out these filthy lyrics - love it.

Clor - Good Stuff
Coming out of my mouth
Into your eyes
Not once, but twice

Choosing the other's eye
Always why
Forever yielding
You should have seen your face
Can you imagine how I must appear

Let me do it for you
Let me do it for me
Let me give me some more of your good stuff

Help me out with my hair
How i have come to resemble those things you like No hidden seams are here
No happy faces
Guided by stellar voices

Now let me do it for you
Let me do it for me
Let me give me some more of your good stuff

We are the content
and we drink them all night
Out through a curly straw
Let's suck our poisonous juices!
Oh, that's good
Let me do it for you
Let me do it for me
Let me give me some more of your good stuff

Tuesday, 11 November 2008

The Rapture - No Sex For Ben

You may have heard this track on the soundtrack to GTA4 (Radio Broker) - it's a wee bit of a chooooon.

The Rapture - No Sex For Ben