It is Into The Lair by Zedd which I discovered on the Mortal Instruments film soundtrack but it's become my go to track to get me up and moving about. Shame its so short
It is Into The Lair by Zedd which I discovered on the Mortal Instruments film soundtrack but it's become my go to track to get me up and moving about. Shame its so short
Have a little bit of a soft spot for Daniel Radcliffe as he can be credited with re-igniting my love of the theatre and helping me to discover the band Beruit who have quickly become one of my favourites.
The nerd in me also likes the fact that this was filmed in one shot (and the song isn't bad either).
Can't wait to see him on stage again next year.
She's been around for a while but I heard her music for the first time on Radio 4's Front Row believe it or not (further sign of my decline into middle age).
Her new album and the one I bought is call Ilo Veyou (say it fast and you'll get it) and it's great. She has an amazing voice and likes to play with it, experiment with sounds as well as lyrics. Reminds me a little of Regina Spektor. She sings in both French and English and this is my favourite song, sung in French and called Le Berger.
I have no idea what it's about (my french only stretches to le chien est dans le jardin) so if anyone wants to help me out, I'd be grateful. Apart from sounding so beautiful, pure and simple I love the way the chorus has a sound which touches on the oriental. I also love the 'solo' at the end.
Well here we are, the fortieth song. It's been great fun - a real trip down memory lane and good rummage around into the far corners of the record collection.
I was going to put a birthday related song today but the one I wanted I couldn't find anywhere mainly because I can't remember who it's by or what it's called! But I always knew I'd include this one and the further through the list I got the more I knew it had to be one of the final two.
It is difficult to describe quite why I like this song so much and why it is probably my all time favourite. Although it is being challenged all the time and most recently by a song by the same band.
Not surprisingly I find it beautiful. It is a rich, multi-layered song but also contradictory. It took me a while to work out what it was about and I'm still not 100% sure. It actually seems very bitter, twisted and resentful when you read the lyrics. And I like that it sounds the way it does when it could have been very angry sounding.
It is by one of my favourite bands: Radiohead. They are a band that have evolved and some of the evolutions I haven't always liked but I always come back to them. Their music is complex, emotive and evocative. I've liked them from the very start back in their days of raw guitar rock and although I still love their early work and think it's some of their best, I also love what they've become.
The song is Nude from In Rainbows which is probably the album I listen to most. It also reminds me of my brother because he said he listened to it a lot when our Dad died and it made him cry.
Partly because I can identify with a lot of sentiment expressed and because it feels as if it has been written with heartfelt honesty from genuine experience. If it hasn't then all the more genius.
But it also has the most beautiful, haunting piece of violin that lingers long after the song has finished.
And the claim to fame comes from the fact that one of the band members - Urby - used to work for the same company as me. I didn't know him any more than a smile of acknowledgement when our paths crossed in the kitchen or elsewhere in the office.
He was one of those people that everyone knew of mainly because he always looked dishevelled, wore a trilby and he played in a band. He always had a cheery smile on his face probably because at night while we were parked in front of the telly with our tea on our lap he was off playing gigs.
His dishevelled look, I found out, was often because he got home very late having had to travel far and wide to play. Good for him I say. The hard graft has certainly paid off as he eventually took a gamble and jacked-in the day job to work on the band - Noah and the Whale - full time.
And the song? It's The First Days of Spring and it still pricks tears in my eyes when I hear it.
Gosh it's getting difficult now to pin down the last three songs. I'm getting the feeling this won't be the last time I do something like this...
Anyway, this song is perfect in so many ways. It comes from another soundtrack: Baz Luhrman's Romeo + Juliet which is just such a brilliantly vibrant and modern adaptation of Shakespeare's classic play. The genius is making it accessible to a young, contemporary audience while retaining the essence of the classic text.
And what helped was the soundtrack which has so many superb tracks on it but this one which is the essence of the film's style combining choral with a dance beat. Atmospheric, contemporary and a toe-tapper.
It's Quindon Tarver's cover of When Dove's Cry:
Have bared my music soul over the last few weeks but there are still some dark corners left to explore. There are a couple of artists that may raise an eyebrow in surprise, I may only write about one - it is getting tough to choose as I get closer to my last song.
This artist I discovered through a film and bought a best of album on a bit of a whim when I got home. But I love her. Her music is what I listen to on a sunny Sunday morning when I'm lazing on the sofa writing on my lap top with a pot of tea on the go. It has the sound of old black and white romance movies.
She doesn't even sing in my own language (and I only know a handful of words of her native tongue) which should give you a clue. Not guessed yet? Oh OK, it's Edith Piaf. Surprised?
While we on the subject of me annoying people with songs I thought I might as well throw this cheesy little one in. It is Nothing Compares 2 U by Sinead O'Connor which I loved. It's not playing it a lot that annoyed my friends at Uni, it was the fact that I used to sing it to myself, all the time. And I'm not a great singer.
It became known as 'that bloody song'.
I do, still, really like it. I think Sinead O'Connor has an amazingly pure voice and at the time I remember liking the fact that she cut off her hair so being long-haired and beautiful couldn't be used by the record company as a marketing ploy.
To me she represented a beautiful, talented and a strong woman who was going to do things her way. She is also a singer who can portray great emotion and feeling in her voice. It's a cover version but you'd think she experienced everything she sings about.
It's not my favourite song of hers, that is Troy, which is probably up their in my top 10 favourite songs of all time.
Picture the scene: a small council house, badly built, with thin walls and creaky floorboards. A teenage girl, in her bedroom which is above the living room, playing the same song over and over and over again, while working out her own little dance routine to said song.
I think my Dad's comment was when I eventually gave up and came downstairs was: "Now I like that song but after the hundreth time!!!!"
And the song? It was Take My Breath Away by Berlin because we were all into Top Gun back then.
Just listen, you can imagine what it sounded like through the ceiling. (Still know all the words but fortunately can't remember my dance routine.)
Having started out quite promisingly seeing The Cult, some might think that I let myself down a bit with my next outing to see some live music but I'm still proud that I went to see INXS on their Kick tour. I actually saw them twice on the same tour, first at the De Montfort Hall in Leicester then again at the Birmingham NEC - they must have added the dates at bigger venues later as a response to demand.
At the NEC it was all seating and we were on the front row of a block quite far back so I couldn't actually see anything, for some inexplicable reason a security guard asked if Rose and I would like to go nearer the front. Er...tricky one that. We had to leave Rose's husband and brother in law behind but we were taken right to the front so we had an amazing view.
At the end of the gig they opened a barrier and let a bunch of people go back stage but we couldn't really go skipping off to meet the band with the boys waiting for us at the back. Besides as a 15/16 year-old I was far too shy to do something like that anyway.
I'd liked INXS for a while, again another band I got into before they made it big in the UK and already had a couple of their albums before they released Kick. My brother, who is now a graphic designer painted the logo from the Kick album on the back of denim jacket. It was actually my sister's jacket that she'd lent me, it became a more permanent addition to my wardrobe after that.
The song I've chosen always reminds me of my bezzie mate Jen as it's one we always danced to at Sixth Form Socials. I guarantee that if Jen was here now, and it was playing, we'd both be dancing.
Anyone who's seen my other blog will know I go to the theatre a lot. They might have also surmised that I don't like musicals at all but that doesn't mean that Theatre hasn't influenced my music collection.
There is a particular song and a particular artist that falls into this category.
First up is the song. It's Islands by The XX. It was played briefly during a scene in Hamlet at the National Theatre last year - Ophelia is listening to it when Laertes comes to warn her off getting involved with Hamlet - which I loved so much I went to see it twice.
I didn't know who the song was by when I saw the play but when I was given a copy of The XX's album a few months later it immediately sounded familiar. It took a while to place it, well actually someone pointed it out but now that scene and the song are intrinsically linked.
The second, is an artist who've I written about before. He's also an actor and I saw him in a play in which he sang a song. I discovered he is also a singer/song writer after googling him when I got home, listened to some samples, loved them and the rest is history. It's Johnny Flynn and this is called The Wrote & The Writ:
My 19th birthday was my first away from home as I was at University. My birthday's up until that point had been quite sober affairs mainly owing to the fact that I went for quality rather than quantity when it came to friends and most of them lived outside my hometown and therefore had to drive.
So once I got to University in the big city, got a bigger group of friends, with bus as the transport there was no way it was going to be sober. We did a lot of clubbing in that first year at Uni. Our student bar was tiny (rebuilt and extended for my second year) so we often headed into town.
As it was my birthday we decided to go to a slightly glitzier club (think footballer wives rather than chic). And as this was my favourite song at the time my friends got the DJ to play it for me with a dedication at which point we tore up the dance floor. Well we thought we did anyway.
It's Killer by Seal and I still love it.
I don't have nearly enough blues in my record collection considering how much I love it.
My Dad introduced me to the blues. He was into Howlin' Wolf, John Lee Hooker and the like but what re-ignited my love of the genre was my discovery Sea Sick Steve. His music harks back to the classics and what I particularly like is that you can actually hear that he is playing a real instrument and not only that that his guitar has just as much a story to tell as he does. He's an ex-hobo you see and the sound is as beat up and down on it's luck as I'm sure he once was. Which is as it should be.
Shame my Dad will never get to hear Sea Sick Steve.
I've chosen the John Lee Hooker song I'm in the Mood to accompany Sea Sick Steve's The Dead Song so you can get an idea of what I mean.
I don't mind heavy metal or heavy rock if there is a good, strong vocalist behind it. I remember my brother listening to thrash metal in which all the instruments blurred into an only vaguely tuneful sludge over which someone barked into a microphone. Not for me although I can appreciate the rush the volume of it live gives.
My second favourite band: Skunk Anansie is a case in point. Like most rock they sound heavier live but through it all comes Skin's vocals. She is a formidable looking woman who's soft girly voice speaking inbetween track belies the sound that comes out when she sings. She's a great physical performer too.
Skunk Anansie and Skin (when she went solo for spell) are probably the band/artist I've seen most live. They never reached the height of fame that took them beyond favoured venues such as the Brixton Academy. Good for me, not so good for them.
They are my other favourite band (after Muse) and Skin is my favourite female vocalist for her unique sound, always being pitch perfect and having the light and shade to her voice that brings depth to each song even when she is jumping around on stage.
This is probably one of the most well known Skunk Anansie songs:
She went a lot softer for her first solo album and I loved seeing that side to her:
Of course it was my brother Derren that got me into them and friends of my parents Mick and Rose that took us. Mick worked with my Dad but was a lot younger than him and had quite a cool taste in music. If it hadn't have been for Mick and Rose, goodness know who would have been my first gig and it probably wouldn't have happened until I was much older.
Derren and I were 14 when we went to see them at the De Montfort Hall in Leicester. How cool did we feel at school the next day? I dreamed of having a Russian fur hat like lead singer Ian Astbury.
I think my parents probably got a bit worried by my love of The Cult when I bought the huuuuge posters you used to only be able to buy outside gig venues and plastered all over my bedroom walls. They were so big they were virtually wall paper and of course they were mainly black or black and red. Not quite the look my parents were hoping for in their youngest daughters bedroom.
Despite my love of The Cult I didn't go down the goth route so my parents needn't have worried. But the seeds to my love of guitar music were planted.
I've chosen the obvious song She Sells Sanctuary because it just rocks and is a head-nodder and no mistake (and I know all the words).
Maybe it's because the vast majority of my record collection, for a long time, was guitar heavy and most of the DJs on the radio stations I listen to take the piss out of them but I've always felt guilty about liking Coldplay. And I shouldn't because they write some beautiful, catchy and sometimes quite passionate songs.
It's an obvious choice but this remains one of my favourite tracks by them. It's probably the only song that I want to do air piano to:
No 70s childhood is complete without a bit of Abba. They are the archetypal 70s pop band and my sister was a fan but then so was my brother Derren, yes he of Nirvana stage-diving fame. Who'd have thought it?
It's not just that Abba reminds me of my sister singing along to their records in our bedroom or that they are a great sing along band but also because they intrigue me. Beneath the frothy but ridiculously catchy pop tunes there are some very dark lyrics.
Towards the later years of their recording career the two marriages in the band were collapsing and it spawned some beautifully sad songs (you might be getting the impression by now that I like sad songs and I do).
This song, The Winner Takes It All, is probably the most obvious but the next time to you listen to Abba Gold (I know you have it in your collection) remember the heart break and bitterness between the band members, it will add a new depth. Trust me.
I've written about my love of Will Young before and how he's the only reality TV produced singer I actually voted for so I couldn't not include him some on this list. I love the unique tone of his voice and long may he continue recording:
This second song is also from a reality TV show and for the same reason as Will in that I just love the unique tone to her voice and was smitten by it from the outset. It's Alex Parks from the BBC's Fame Academy. Sadly she seems to have disappeared off the face of the recording earth. Not a surprise really as she seem extremely ill at ease with the attention and fame winning the show inevitably brought.
Even though I love her original recordings, some of the covers she did on the show and which subsequently ended up on her first album were outstanding so I'm choosing her version of Beautiful:
Jeff Buckley was recommended to me as an artist who had influenced Radiohead who are one of my favs. His album Grace has to be one of the most beautiful and made terribly poignant by the fact that he died tragically young. It was his only studio album.
He has such an incredible and varied voice and the album never fails to move me. Every time I listen to it I can't help thinking about what he would have done musically had he lived longer.
This is Lilac Wine which is one of the most beautiful songs in existence, in my humble opinion.
I've been pondering this one for some time. Have even put it off a couple of times, mainly because I can't decide. It's my favourite band, Muse, you see and when I start listening to them I'm like a kid in sweetshop trying to choose one favourite.
They are a band I've liked from their early days - although I confess I didn't discover them until their second album and they are the only band I would go and see at Wembley. Boy can they do justice to Wembley.
There last album is probably my least favourite. Bands evolve and sometimes you don't evolve with them but their back catalogue is quite fantastic.
So I've decided to make it a little easier, only a little, and choose two songs: one from early on in there recording career and one from a bit later and package them up together.
First up and song #24 is New Born from Origins of Symmetry. So many of their songs remind me of seeing them live but this one in particular. As soon at the tinkly piano starts the crowd roars and then when it kicks the place explodes with energy. It reminds me of how at their gigs I truly abandon myself to the music.
And song #25 is Sing For Absolution from Absolution which I've always loved for it's haunting melody and chorus. The real joy is singing along at the top of my voice - either in the privacy of my own home or at a gig when no one can really hear how bad I sound.
This isn't what you are thinking. A lot of my music discoveries come from films I see (and I see a lot of films) but they also come from hearing actors and other musician's talk about what they are listening to.
Elijah Wood of Lord of the Rings fame (I'm a big LOTR fan) is a music junkie and has lead me to discovering bands like Gogol Bordello and Apples in Stereo. And likewise Daniel Radcliffe (I'm a huge Harry Potter fan) has led to the discovery of the band behind this next song: Beirut.
I'd definitely describe myself as a heart-led person. I never feel so alive as when I've seen a really moving play or film, had some sort of response from it, and much of the music I like elicits an emotional response whether it is joy or sadness or the need to dance wildly or curl in a ball.
I write all this because I'm trying to explain why I like Beirut so much. To many it will seem like a wailing dirge but to me it is the mixture of joy and celebration with an underlying sorrow that is, to me anyway, genius.
I think the band achieve this with the mixture of cultural influences in the sound. The Gulag Orkestar from which Brandenburg is taken has a strong Eastern European folk influence.
Beirut are one of my favourite bands, sadly they seem to have split before I could see them live, and Brandenburg is probably in my all time top five songs. It transports me to another place, not physical but emotional, every time I hear it. Somewhere desolate but hopeful. So thanks Mr Radcliffe for mentioning them in an interview and arousing my curiosity.
We were on holiday in Cuba, it was New Year's Eve and our Cuban guide Marlon had organised a fantastic evening for us. It started with a sunset flag ceremony and dinner over looking the ocean as the last bit of light left the sky.
Then we headed into Santa Clara to a music house where Septeto Sones de Oriente were playing. It was wonderful music and everyone was relaxed and having a great time.
I had to buy a copy of CD and no it wasn't one of those holiday impulse purchases that ends up in the bin. I call it my sunny music. Whenever work is tough or the weather is bad I put this on and I'm immediately transported back to beautiful, sunny Cuba and my lovely trip there.
After the music house we went to the main square where there was more music but things didn't really kick off until after the midnight speeches and then the place came alive. It was like being in a movie, the square was full and everyone was dancing. And no one was dancing alone for long.
As its my big bro's birthday today thought it appropriate to post this song. It's Smells Like Teen Spirit by Nirvana.
It earns it's place for several reasons:
Firstly it was my brother that introduce me to Nirvana.
Secondly, I've dined out on the story of him not only seeing them live at Rock City in Nottingham but also stage diving at the gig (I think it's cool anyway).
Thirdly because I just love Nirvana and this song is one of my all time favourites. It's slightly cheesy but it is a classic track that never fails to get my head nodding or toe tapping or even sometimes even jumping around if space and situation allows.
If I had a time machine that could go back to one gig, I think Nirvana would probably be it as I never saw them live.
Like quite a few bands in my collection I discovered Gogol Bordello through a film. They were sort of playing themselves in Everything is Illuminated, mainly because Elijah Wood, star of the film, was a big fan and dating one of the singers.
But I liked their blend of Eastern European gypsy-folk music and punk so I got their album. However, you can't really appreciate Gogol Bordello until you see them live, which I've done a few times now, but the first time was unbeatable.
I've been to a lot of 'lively' gigs with Mosh but always stayed near the back out of harms way. With Gogol Bordello, positioned as usual three quarters of the way back from the stage, the gig started with all the vigour that the band could employ and the crowd responded accordingly but this was the whole crowd. And the only thing to do was to join in.
So there I was in the midst of several hundred men, jumping up and down with the sort of wild abandonment and joy normally reserved for childhood. In the midst of all the chaos and energy and while in full flight, Mosh and I happened to turn and look at each other at the same time - he had the biggest grin on his face and I know I did too.
It was one of those moments when you just know that you are sharing in one of the best times and you don't even have to to say it.
And if you get a chance, go and see Gogol Bordello live - but preferably in a small venue, there is far more band/crowd interaction that way. Trust me, it's brilliant and after that I started moving closer and closer to the front at more gigs.
So here is one of my favourite Gogol Bordello songs in honour of that moment: Start Wearing Purple. Oh and the picture was taken by me at a festival on Clapham Common.
Yesterday's music shame was all about singing, this one is all about dancing. Yep you guessed it, well maybe you didn't, it's Justin Trouser-snake.
This is like pop-aholics anonymous. *stands* Hello, I'm Rev Stan, I spent money on Future Sex/Love Sounds.
Now I prefer the Future Sex half of the album as it is much funkier than the R&B influenced second half but it does fit awkwardly alongside my predominantly indie/guitar led record collection. But I do like a bit a bop and you just can't fail to throw a few moves to this one on the kitchen dance floor, it's just achingly cool.
It is of course Sexy Back (dare you not to at least do a little head nod or toe tap)
Come on we all have them. Songs or even albums that go totally against our usual taste in music.
I have a couple of very guilty pleasures, I'll post the second tomorrow, get them over with in one go so to speak, so we can move on.
Anyway without delaying the embarrassment any longer, (one of) my guilty pleasures is Daniel Beddingfield. Just his album Gotta Get Thru This. I love the funkier songs like the title track and Right Girl but, and here I hang my head in shame *speaks quietly* I actually really, really like If You're Not the One.
It's so unlike me but I can't help it. It's on one of my favourite iPod playlists and I have to sing along really loudly whenever it comes on (one day I'll hit the high note).
Bet there are lots of secret fans out there really.
I have to include this one because it reminds me of two things. Firstly evenings spent huddled around a radio with my brothers trying to find a commercial radio station that was playing it because it had been banned by the BBC.
And secondly because it serves as a reminder of how relatively innocent things were back then. Would anyone even blink if there was a song with the lyrics: 'relax, don't do it, when you want to come' and 'when you want to suck to it'?
It is of course Relax by Frankie Goes to Hollywood. I was 12 when it was released and probably didn't really understand fully what it meant but everyone was talking about it and it felt quite rebellious listening to it.
(It's also a bit of brilliant 80s pop)
Back in the day of vinyl the record player my brothers and I had, had four different speeds (it was that old but no we didn't have to wind it up). You had the single speed 45 rpm and album speed 33 rpm. But then there was 78 rpm and something much slower than 33 rpm, can't remember exactly what but it was something like 17 rpm.
We never had anything that was suitable for playing on the fastest and slowest speeds but that didn't stop us experimenting. We were kids.
Faster was always funnier and our favourite was Kings of The Wild Frontier by Adam and the Ants mainly because it sounded like Adam was singing on helium and the distinctive drum beat was manic. Brilliant. The hours just flew by.
You'll have to take my word for it thoug because I doubt very much such a recording exists. The original was quite cool though - it was my older brother's record. His taste in music went downhill after that.
Ah and video's were much cheaper to make back then (and the dance routines easier to learn).
This one is from the brilliant Donnie Darko which is one of my favourite films if not my all time favourite (so far). It's one of those films that no matter how many times I watch it, I always see something new and yet I never quite get it. I have my own theory but that is for another post.
But what of the song. Well it's become synonimous with the film and it fits so perfectly, it could have been written for it. Of course it wasn't, it's a cover of a Tears For Fears song from the 80's and I confess I only had their greatest hits, released in 1992, so I don't know exactly when it was first released.
Anyway, not only is it great song and a great song from a great movie but it's also a great example of what cover versions should be: Different and better than the original. And if you don't believe me here is Mad World from Donnie Darko (albeit sung by Roland Orzabal not Gary Jules) followed by the original, which still has a certain charm.
and the original
While I'm on the thread of songs with specific memories I had to put this one in this list. It's Shiny Happy People by REM which is sort of infamous now as the song the band refuses to play live or maybe they've changed their mind in recent years, I don't know.
Anyway, I love it not only because it's a jolly song but because it always reminds me of one night at our Student Union bar disco, this song came on and it was a bit of a favourite of mine and my friend Chris' so we immediately leapt up to dance.
Now I don't know whether it was because our dancing wasn't deemed terribly good or to hide the fact that we were the only two people on the dance floor but the DJ hit the smoke machine, hard, and we soon found ourselves dancing in a dense fog, so dense we couldn't even see each other. All we could hear was the music and our own laughter.
I feel compelled to add some Rev Stan/REM music trivia that doesn't necessarily have a song attached to it:
1. I got into REM three albums before they released the very, very popular Out of Time (a rare occasion of not jumping on the bandwagon).
2. The first time I saw them was at the Milton Keynes Bowl and they were supported by Radiohead, you know that little band that Thom Yorke sings in?
3. I got to see REM many years later play their Glastonbury warm up gig at the relatively tiny Brixton Academy and it was amazing proving that gigs at big venues, on the whole, suck.
This song is intrinsically linked to a memory I have of me and my older sister. I was sat on her knee and she was swaying me from side to side in time with the music and singing the song. I remember little else of the context but I love the song for it nonetheless.
Golden Brown by the Stranglers:
So, I'm going with this one because it was the first single I ever bought. It was released in January 1984 and I was 12 years old.
Duran Duran were the first band I really got into. I had four friends at school and we all liked Duran Duran. Correction: We all fancied Duran Duran. But we weren't allowed to have the same favourite. I thought I did quite well because I got to choose Simon Le Bon as favourite. Poor Victoria B got Roger Taylor! Still think that is funny.
Simon Le Bon sings the opening lines really low and I used to think that it sounded like I'd left the record player accidentally on 33rpm. I'm sure I'll come onto the fun my brothers and I had playing certain records at the wrong speed later in the list.
Anyway, may I present my first foray into funding the music industry: New Moon on Monday by Duran Duran. Funny how I still know the words...
This little blog project was inspired by a friend's 40th birthday present from her husband. What he did was find out what song was number one on each of her birthdays, buy them and put them all on to a set of compilation CD's. How amazing is that?
Now my project isn't quite as grand but as I am hitting that same milestone this year, I thought it would be a good excuse to pick out some songs that are special and write a post about each, 40 songs in fact.
These are songs that are special for many different reasons and I haven't yet planned the entire list so the order may well be a bit erratic but here goes:
My first song, well more of a snippet really, is from Sally Boyden. Why? Well the first cassette tape I can remember owning was her album The Littlest Australian. I had an Australian aunt who may have given it to me or my sister but I used to love listening to tree hugging Sally sing her cover versions.
As someone who has always been of diminutive stature it may also have been the fact that she was called the 'Littlest' that had a special resonance with my child self.
Sadly the cassette is long gone and I've not found it as a digital recording or on CD. But I have found this little clip on YouTube so take it away Sally:
I also found another clip which tells you a bit more about Sally and also has a short clip of her singing Thumberlina which was one of my favourite songs - who'd have thought she'd end up as a heroin addicted anorexic? (And if anyone does know where I can get a copy of the album would love to have it, for old times sake.)
Found out yesterday that Radiohead released a new album: King of Limbs. I've been a bit out of loop on music news throwing all my energies into theatre and film stuff so I happened upon the news by accident. But that didn't stop me quickly buying it.
Their last album In Rainbows is one of my all time favourites - not just of Radiohead's back catalogue but of my entire music collection. That isn't to say I've liked everything they've ever done. I could never get past track three of Kid A before having to switch off. In Rainbows was a return to form. Taking everything I loved about their early work and building on it.
So would they surpass what they'd achieved with In Rainbows? I'll premis this by saying I've only listened to the album through once but my initial response is 'no'. So far it feels like they've hit on a sound style and, well, repeated it. In a nutshell it's very repetitive.
Maybe I need to give it a bit more of a chance and I will listen to it some more - it's not quite Kid A it has some redeeming features but I have to confess that I am disappointed.
Thanks to my bro for posting this video of Radiohead's song Lotus Flower on facebook because I may not have happened upon it otherwise. At times it feels like you've burst in on Thom Yorke in a private moment. Come on we've all had a bit of mental dance in the comfort and security of our own privacy.
Oh and the new album? Downloading as I type...
Just been watching the slightly above mediocre Adventureland (really would like to see Kristen Stewart pulling off a different performance some time) and this played over the end credits.
INXS were probably the first band I was truly crazy about as a teenager (Duran Duran was pre-teen). I got into them quite early in their career but didn't get to see them live until they went mega with Kick. I got my brother, the artistic one, to paint the logo from the album across the back of my denim jacket. I thought I looked sooo cool. (Still have the jacket somewhere, saved for an 80s themed fancy dress, I'll dig it out sometime and post a pic)
Don't Change is from one of there very early albums Shabooh Shoobah which I used to have on cassette. Sadly my cassette player is long gone, as are my cassettes....Great song though.
(Well I had been planning it but as you are such a fan ;0)
Have loved both the Twilight and New Moon soundtracks in fact they've helped me to discover bands I'd never heard of before.
The Florence and Fanfarlo songs didn't disappoint but as ever there are some great songs from artists previously unknown to me.
This is the stand out for me. It's so haunting:
Another BBC 6 music discovery of mine, she did a session on the Marc Riley show a few weeks back. Her third album, Outlaster, came out yesterday so I bought it based on what I'd heard on the show and I really like it.
She has elements of the quirky sound of Beruit, creating drama and atmosphere with violins and other random instruments and little of the edge of PJ Harvey's voice, although more gentle. There are also shades of Sinead O'Conner in her voice occasionally and someone else I can't quite place, possibly Bjork...
This is my favourite song so far and I'm hoping to get my hands on her previous two albums soon...
What's the best movie soundtrack of all time?
It's not the best movie soundtrack of all time but it's the one I've been listening to most recently just because there are a great selection of songs on it: Twilight saga: New Moon.
One of my favourites is the Thom Yorke song Hearing Damage. Love it on my headphones while walking around London or on a bus. It's a great getting town song.
I liked the Twilight soundtrack too and am really looking forward to the release of the soundtrack for Eclipse which has two tracks from my new fav band Fanfarlo who I mentioned in a post back in Feb.
Anyway, here's the Thom Yorke song:
It is definitely following in the 'rock-musical' sound of the last album which was my least favourite of everything they've done.
But I'm sure it will work very well in the context of the film and sound fabulous when I see them at Wembley in Semptember - the last album definitely worked well in the live stadium setting.
Have been listening to my iPod on shuffle a lot recently which always throws up songs I haven't heard in a while and had forgotten I liked.
This is my best rediscovery so far, it's Troy by Sinead O'Conner. I love the drama of it, the way she has so much emotion in her voice as she tells the story. And such a beautiful singing voice it is too.
Turns out Fanfarlo are going to be on the Late Show with David Letterman tonight. I'll be in sleepy bo bo's land by the time it airs so here is the video to go with their new single which you can download for free from their website.
Was listening to Marc Riley's show on BBC 6 Music last night as I often do. He regularly has new bands playing live sessions and yesterday it was a London band called Fanfarlo.
I really liked the two songs they played. The singer has a nice voice (it sounds a bit like someone else's but can't place), they have an interesting mix of musical instruments and nice sunny melodies, some tinged with a little melancholy.
So I went to their website and listened to some more, which I also liked and ended up buying and downloading the album Reservoir. I doubt many record stores, if any, would stock it as they are a small band still playing Student Union's in the UK.
Here is one of their tracks called Finish Line.