Unauthorised item in the bagging area

Saturday, 30 November 2013

The Spirit Shows

August 1981, a young Roddy Frame leads Aztec Camera to De Villes nightclub in Manchester, just off Albert Square. They play The Spirit Shows, Just Like Gold and Remember The Docks and someone has uploaded a recording to Soundcloud. De Villes was the first nightclub I ever went to (not this night I must add, I was only eleven in 1981). De Villes must have had a slack door policy back in the mid 80s as there's no way I looked 18, I barely looked 16. I drank a bit, danced (after a fashion) with my mates and got off with a girl in fishnets. It's funny, the things that stick with you.

I'm off on my youngest brother's stag do, a day and evening in Liverpool. Nothing too wild, a few beers, late train home. Someone's threatened a Beatles tribute band at The Cavern. Wish me luck.

Back To Land

Wooden Shjips had a new lp out earlier in November. The single Back To land sounds really good- bright and clear, some lovely melody along with that heavy guitar groove. The thing with Wooden Shjips is, you know exactly what you're going to get, and they sometimes disappoint a little over the course of an album, but this one sounds like everything they do well, done really well.

The video? Your guess is as good as mine but it fits in nicely with the moral panic news stories this week about clowns threatening and chasing people in the street, from Wigan to Norfolk. A spokesman for Norfolk constabulary said 'Dressing as a clown is not against the law.'

Not yet. But it's only a matter of time.

Friday, 29 November 2013

The Return Of Friday Night Is Rockabilly Night 129

I've got ongoing lack of Boxnet bandwidth problems so your Friday night rockabilly comes in the shape of a documentary from London in 1981, then in the throes of a rockabilly revival, presented by Danny Baker and opening with The Blue Cats and then going back to the roots and forward again. Most of the kids dancing in parts one and six will be well into their fifties now, if not older. Fascinating stuff.

Snubbed Four

An ace New Order interview just after the release of Technique with a very fresh faced Bernard, a less fresh faced Hooky and Stephen. Vaguely stroppy throughout regarding Top Of The Pops, videos, the re-release of Atmosphere, marketing Ian Curtis and a certain Irish frontman...'It's all pretty hypocritical and it's a false ideology, I mean U2 are supposed to be Christians right and a big Christian belief is that thou shall not become a false messiah, right, and that Bongo guy, right, he's having a good stab at it isn't he?'

Thursday, 28 November 2013

Snubbed Three

Loop, recently reformed feedback fans, and some very late 80s interview clips along the lines of 'we make music for ourselves and if anyone else likes it it's a bonus'. For the record, I do like the music, so that's the bonus. To be honest, Wooden Shjips don't sound a million miles from these chaps do they? There's something very mid-to-late 80s about the mixture of guitar noise, 60s visuals and Home Counties accents.

Wednesday, 27 November 2013


I've put up quite a few Big Audio Dynamite posts recently but thought I'd share this with you, having just stumbled across it- blogger's stats tend to suggest there are a fair few BAD fans who come here. After getting fired from The Clash in 1983 Mick went to work pretty quickly, possibly just to prove Joe and Paul wrong. In a Clash old boys solidarity moment he hooked up with also recently fired Topper Headon, plus Leo Williams and Dan Donovan (a future Mr Patsy Kensit) and formed T.R.A.C. (Top Risk Action Company). This band transformed into BAD, gaining Don Letts and losing Topper (who was deep into heroin addiction by this point). T.R.A.C. recorded a series of demos, an albums worth. The Bottom Line, very much a demo and really quite different to the BAD version is here...

The Bottom Line was a potential Clash song, one of the most recently written before Mick's ejection- I believe they had a go at rehearsing it. In this T.R.A.C. version the riff is there (or thereabouts) and some of the lyrics but it's much less bass and drum machine led one that is on BAD's first lp. Some jazzy sax parping away at the end.

The rest of the demos are on Youtube and probably hidden somewhere in the deepest recesses of the internet. This one is Ducane Road...

The rest (you go look for them yourselves I think if you're interested) are Interaction, Nation, Apprentice, Fare Dodgers, Euroshima and The Prolific. It's interesting, if you're a geeky obsessive like me, to speculate on what might have's and what if's...

Deadstock, Baris, Asphodells

This Asphodells remix came out on vinyl last week- Baris K is a Turkish musician/producer who was up here the other day. In this remix Weatherall stretches it out, bassline forefront, adds an Eastern stringed instrument. And the backwards/forwards vocal is t-r-i-p-p-y. Hypnotic. The original is worth seeking out too (or just flipping over if you bought the 12").

Also out recently (not sure if it's on vinyl or not) is a Weatherall/Asphodells remix of Justin Robertson's Deadstock 33s. The Circular Path has a Luke Solomon and Dmitri Veimar remix apiece too. The Weatherall one is machine-funk reminiscent of TLS to these ears. Excerpts of each available to listen to below. I know, I find excerpts annoying too. You'll have to buy it.

Tuesday, 26 November 2013

Snubbed Again

The KLF- I don't remember this interview so I must have missed this episode. I used to have a lot of them taped on VHS but they went the way of all tape and are probably landfill now. Bill Drummond and Jimmy Cauty, neither the easiest man to live with I reckon, made some fantastic records, provided a gateway to dance music for NME readers, had a good play around with notions of what it was to be a pop star and a musician, machine gunned the Brit awards, drove around the M25 for 25 hours and burnt a substantial sum of money. Bill Drummond continues to write thought provoking and interesting books. Jimmy Cauty has a vitriolic and slightly unsettling blog. All good fun.

Monday, 25 November 2013


I broke my Boxnet bandwidth for the month. Or rather, you lot did. Mediafire causes some people problems with the d/ls and they're quite trigger happy with my files too. So for this week I will be making use of Youtube and Soundcloud in order to keep this thing going as we approach December. Having put two clips up from the long lost BBC 2 show Snub TV recently I thought we could dig into their archives a bit.

First up The Jesus And Mary Chain, who were in danger of looking a little obsolete in 1989. Here they are 'promoting' Automatic, along with the video for Kill Surf City, some snippets of interviews and a couple of live clips.

'We're up against the music business. We're nothing'.

If you've got a spare £130 you could buy all their albums in one vinyl box at the moment.

Sunday, 24 November 2013


Snub TV, 1988. Mind duly blown.

Francis goes something like 'We'll have our sons, they will be all well hung, your daddy's rich, your Mama's a pretty thing, we'll go to California, something about lesbians.... etc etc (with a load of Spanish too)' and there's a throat-wrenching bit of  'Aaaghhhh!'

Kim goes duh-duh-duh-dum. Enthusiastically.
Dave goes rattatatatatatatatat, on and on, faster.
Joey gets more beautiful noise out of a guitar and a beer can than seems possible.

Still haven't bothered to see what their new stuff is like.

Saturday, 23 November 2013

Stone Boat Saturday

Fresh from his stint as artist-in-residence at Faber there's a brand new mix from Mr Weatherall. Never one to let the grass grow under his feet this is mainly 60s psyche and garage rock from the likes of Dave Diamond and The Higher Elevation, Public Nuisance, The Chocolate Watch Band and Bohemian Vendetta.


Our son Isaac is 15 years old today. Born at break of day in 1998, with a genetic disease we knew nothing about and had never heard of (Hurlers Disease, MPS 1), he has had a life punctuated by hospital, illness and medical appointments. He also lives his life to the full. He goes to a special needs secondary school which he loves, wears a hearing aid and a cochlear implant (which has changed his life in the last two years), and as the picture shows he enjoys the ladies underwear departments of major retail outlets. He joins two young people with special needs groups for activities and a social life with peers locally- services which the Tory bastards at Trafford Council are trying to cut by over 50%, allegedly in the name of 'personalisation'. I think we may end up seeing them in court. Given that he has been within minutes of death several times in his early life, and survived both meningitis and a minor stroke in 2008, I sometimes think it's a miracle he's made it to 15. Not that I believe in miracles, not your religious type of miracle anyway. And on he goes, defeating and confounding expectations along the way. Happy birthday Isaac.

This is Mr Richard Hawley, live on BBC 6 Music.

As The Dawn Breaks (live session version)

Friday, 22 November 2013

The Return Of Friday Night Is Rockabilly Night 128

I'm stretching the definition of rockabilly beyond reason here but there is a rationale and I couldn't let the Kennedy connection pass by.

I have a memory of watching something back in 87-88 (ish), probably The Chart Show's indie section but it could have been something on Channel 4, and it was of a band called The Jack Rubies (named after the man who shot Lee Harvey Oswald, who may or may not have shot JFK). The song had an 80s rockabilly swing with a video containing black and white footage of  Elvis performing outdoors in the 50s, like in the picture above. My memory tells me the song went 'the King is dead...'

My not very extensive research has turned up The Jack Rubies on Youtube- not particularly rockabilly to be honest, more mid-to-late 80s indie-pop, in a similar vein to The Mighty Lemon Drops, that sort of thing. From Stoke Newington. Brief music press interest. Underperformed. Had a college radio hit in the US. Obscurity.

This song, Wrecker Of Engines, has some slight rockabilly influences. Possibly.

That's yer lot. Normal rockabilly service resumes next week.

Mrs Kennedy's Pink Suit

50 years ago today events unfolded around Deeley Plaza that led to the creation of this genius cut-and-paste hip hop record by Steinski.

And now.... here's Johnny
Ask not what your country can do for you
Ask what you can do for your country
Here is a bulletin
Stand by please
In Dallas, Texas
It appears that something has happened in the motorcade route
Ich bin ein Berliner
Three shots were fired
Put me on Phil, put me on
President Kennedy has been seriously wounded by this shooting
Stand by please, stand by please
More details, just arrived
Mrs Kennedy jumped up
She called 'oh no'
The energy, the faith, the devotion
The motorcade sped on
The world is very different now
Something has happened here
We understand there has been a shooting
I can see many, many motorcycles
Mrs Kennedy's pink suit
Something is wrong here, something is terribly wrong
More details just arrived
The motorcade sped on
A flash, apparently official
President Kennedy died at 1 pm
Central standard time.
We dare not forget today that we are the heirs of that first revolution
There is a prisoner, wearing a black sweater
Do you have anything to say in your defence?
Oswald has been shot
Jack Ruby, Jack Ruby
Ruby, he lives in Texas
He runs the Carousel Club
Here comes the ambulance
More details just arrived
Mrs Kennedy jumped up, she called 'oh no'
The energy, the faith, the devotion
The motorcade sped on
More details just arrived
Mrs Kennedy jumped up, she called 'oh no'

The Motorcade Sped On

Thursday, 21 November 2013

Disko Kebap

I found this on the web recently, a fabulous dancey remix from Turkey- so I have posted it accompanied by a picture of Broadway dancer Janet McGrew dressed as a belly dancer, which is probably an awful piece of cultural stereotyping. It's by Urfali Bapi and remixed by Baris K (who may well feature here again very soon due to an imminent, tripped out remix by Andrew Weatherall/Asphodells). I don't what you call this stuff- globaldelic was a suggestion at the site I first heard it. I've never been a fan of the label 'World Music'. I just know that it shakes and shimmies and sounds great.

Wednesday, 20 November 2013

Life And Death

World Of Twist, Manchester's long lost turn of the 90s band, made at least three outstanding singles- The Storm, Sons Of the Stage (one of my favourite records ever) and She's A Rainbow- and an album which was badly mixed (at a cost of a quarter of a million pounds). Quality Street had some good songs on it but no matter how loud you played it, it lacked oomph. A shame since they had real potential, magnetic stage presence and a sound combining 60s pop, Northern Soul and psych with an early 90s sensibility- a definite sidestep from the Madchester sound, more like a sharper, rawer Pulp. I saw them at Manchester Academy and they were a blast, MC Shells keyboards housed in a giant shell, and spinning round newsagents signs and stage props. Front man Tony Ogden died a few years ago, one of the era's lost souls. He was devastated after the band were dropped and spent several years doing little but taking smack and watching World War II documentaries. Drummer Nick Sanderson followed the band by forming Earl Brutus but died of lung cancer in 2008. The lp has recently been remixed/remastered and is due for release next Monday, hopefully giving the record and the band the sound it needed twenty odd years ago. A second disc has radio sessions for John Peel and Mark Goodier and b-sides. This is the extended 12" version of their cover of a Sly Stone song.

Life And Death (12" Mix)

In this interview clip for Snub TV they are interviewed in Withington baths, just up the road from where I grew up and where I once nearly drowned as a kid (I stuck my finger in a grid at the bottom of the deep end. To see what would happen). Proper swimming baths they were- cubicles around the edge, freezing cold, fag ends and plasters floating in the chlorine.

Tuesday, 19 November 2013

Lord Knows It Would Be The First Time

This American TV performance of Please, Please, Please Let Me Get What I Want is a beaut. I saw Johnny and his band at The Ritz back in March and the reviews have been gathering pace and praise ever since that tour. Johnny turned 50 at the end of October as well. Looks well for it doesn't he?

This was a cover of a Rabbit MacKay song, a 60s hippie anthem, for a compilation lp from a few years ago and is one of the best things Johnny has done solo. Especially the guitars.

Tendency To Be Free

Monday, 18 November 2013


Ooooh there's a lovely sequencer line on this nine minute chugger from Duncan Gray. Hits the spot and no mistake. If you like that kind of thing.

Sunday, 17 November 2013

The Russian Rain Is Beating Down My Neck

This post is part of my ongoing project to gather all the different 12" mixes of Big Audio Dynamite songs- I've got a good proportion of them on vinyl and more in mp3 form. V Thirteen was a cracking song from their slightly under-rated second lp, with a really good Mick vocal and lovely guitar chords over that drum machine. BAD 12" versions tend to either stretch the whole song out or play the 7" mix, fade briefly and then reprise with an instrumental wigout for four or five minutes. This one takes the latter approach. V Thirteen. V good.

V Thirteen (12" Mix)

Saturday, 16 November 2013


I don't know what this pair of beauties from the 1920s are doing but I kind of like it. Arty photo shoots with whatever props happened to be found in the room are clearly not a late 20th century invention.

Mrs Swiss is off on a hen do this weekend, in Leeds ('2 Es and LSD' the Leeds clubbing t-shirts used to read, back in the early 90s). So I'm on my own with the kids, trawling the record shops and idling watching people go by from cafe windows, trying to occupy two children with very different ideas about what we should be doing.

There's snow forecast for the north before the end of November. It's a bit early to be mentioning snow. This is my favourite tune by A Man Called Adam, the sound of Saturdays, terrace bars and sunshine.


Friday, 15 November 2013

The Return Of Friday Night Is Rockabilly Night 127

Halfway through Movember, it's rockabilly moustache time on Friday night. It's 1957 and Warren Smith's worried. He's been out of town and his girl's on his mind...

'Who you been lovin' since I've been gone?
A long tall man with a red coat on

Who's been playin' around with you?
A real cool cat with eyes of blue

Somebody saw you at the break of day
Dining and a dancin' at the cabaret

He was long and tall with plenty of cash
He had a red Cadillac and a black moustache'

As far as Warren's concerned despite all the trimmings the new man has- the red Cadillac, the red coat, the eyes of blue, his height, the full wallet- the real deal sealer for his ex appears to have been the black moustache. All the single gentlemen, you know what to do.

Red Cadillac And A Black Moustache

Two Men Thoroughly Outweirding Each Other

As promised a few weeks ago, The Boiler Room set Andrew Weatherall and Ivan Smagghe the challenge of trying to thoroughly outweird each other, back-to-back, through the medium of recorded music. Whether this will set your Friday morning alight I do not know. It's fair to say that it rambles all over the place. Free download via Soundcloud.

Or watch them doing it on Youtube.

Thursday, 14 November 2013

Gallows Eyes

One of my favourite Billy Childish songs today. In 2005 Billy produced yet another album, this time sidestepping the three chord garage-punk to make an album of two halves. Most of the album is poetry readings, many of them nakedly honest, some funny, some quite uncomfortable to listen to. The first seven songs are something else entirely. Recording with Wolf and Nurse Julie as The Chatham Singers, they strip it right back and play seven songs of ragged Delta blues, Billy coaxing some lovely warm guitar tones and Wolf and Julie keeping time on bass and drums. If they sound like they were recorded in his kitchen, it's probably because they were. This one is particularly good.

The Man With the Gallows Eyes

Wednesday, 13 November 2013

Ankle Shackles

This eleven minute epic from King Creosote came out in August last year- motorik drumbeat, strings, fiddles, all sorts of stuff and Kenny's plaintive vocal. It's a stunner. It came on a vinyl only e.p. limited to just 400 copies. I saw a copy on Saturday and like an idiot didn't buy it (limited cash and I went for the Jeremy Deller/Optimo's Voodoo Ray 12 " and the William Onyeabor album). I will have to return to the record shop. In the meantime...

Ankle Shackles

Tuesday, 12 November 2013

Orange Creme

I get sent quite a lot of unsolicited emails offering me music to post for your attention. A lot of them get deleted I'm afraid. Life's too short. I feel bad sometimes. It's a big internet and it's hard for unknown bands and people to get noticed. Also, it's difficult to grab someone's attention (mine) with an email- some are too quirky, some too dull, some too friendly, some just uninteresting. This one from Orange Creme caught my eye, I don't know why. The name's a but offputting admittedly but I liked the email. The blurb for the Electricity e.p. goes like this...

The first track 'Games' centers on an insistent dry & dirty disco bass line that pulses under the dance floor,
with just the right amount of cowbell to leave the listener yearning for more cowbell…

'Runways at Night' is a slice of funky technicolor house. Bright synths stabs, incessant hi-hat pattern and that purple rain Linndrum kick…

And the final track 'End Credits' is space pop filtered over a tight house bass. While a whistling moog synth line flows over the top, familiar from the British spy thrillers of the '70s.

Now I'm not sure that any music could live up to that- just the right amount of cowbell is very subjective I think, leaving the listener yearning for more even more subjective- but it's a good line and I enjoyed the track. You can judge for yourself below- it's certainly decent enough, would sound right in a bar in town. I might nod my head appreciatively. The second one is indeed 'funky technicolour house', and compares itself to Purple Rain. The third I like even more, although I can't quite place it in British spy thrillers of the 70s. But still, a good email Orange Creme- and that's half the battle.

To top it off, as the picture shows, it's available on cassette from Leisure Lovers. And the cassette inlay card features line drawings of a young woman lounging around at home in her underwear and, um, enjoying herself.

Monday, 11 November 2013


I should have posted this yesterday I suppose, with it being Remembrance Sunday but I thought I'd wait for the 11th, it being the day the armistice was signed that ended the First World War. In the summer of 2009 I took a trip to Ypres, Belgium- the scene of some of the worst fighting of the war. These are just a handful of some of the pictures I took. It was a profoundly moving experience, the row upon row of grave, many of unknown soldiers. Around Ypres were names I have been familiar with for years- Hellfire Corner, Passchendale, Essex Farm, Tyne Cot. The picture above shows Langemarck, a German cemetery, last resting place of 18, 000 German soldiers and two British. The plaque below records the names the names of four German young men and twenty unknown Germans.

Tyne Cot is the largest British and Commonwealth War Graves Cemetery in the world. When we visited an Australian male voice choir were there. As we walked past the ANZAC part of the cemetery the choir was singing Abide With Me. An 'excuse me, I've got something in my eye' moment.

On the western edge of Ypres is the Menin Gate, a memorial to 37, 000 British and Commonwealth soldiers whose bodies were never found. As well as the list-upon-list of typically British names were short lists of names of men from Jamaica and India, Singhs in amongst the Taylors and the Walkers.

Tyne Cot looks down towards Ypres from the higher ground around the village of Passchendaele. In 1917 the British army attacked up the hill, through the worst rain in memory and the resulting mud. In the middle of the cemetery are three concrete machine gun posts, permanent reminders of why the cemetery is full. On a nice Flanders day it was still fairly easy to picture the struggle the men had- while also being beyond comprehension.

Everyone should go at least once- the cemeteries, the landscape, the surviving trench systems, the remains of bunkers and first aid stations, the museum in Ypres town centre, the war memorabilia still churned up by Belgian farmers and sold in Ypres' shops, are all unforgettable.

And the row upon row of the graves of men, sent abroad to fight 'the war to end all wars', should remind us why we should never forget.

Sunday, 10 November 2013

Magic Hour

Richard Norris (ex-The Grid) has a new Time And Space Machine 12" out shortly, four songs plus the Cornershop remix posted above. All manner of groovy, psychedelic spaced out sounds abound and at a fiver value for money too. The last time I posted a Time And Space Machine track Mr Norris left a comment telling me off. So no download, listen only.

Saturday, 9 November 2013

Saturday Night Live

Mr Justin Robertson in fine form at the Warehouse Party, a short bus ride from here, for all your Saturday night dancing needs.


Pink Skull - Frottage Industry
Panama Disco Lights - The Mood I'm In (Rodion Nero Dub)
Los Pastores - Thank You Porvenir (Luke Solomon Remix)
Prins Thomas - Sat Klae
Nadia Ksaiba - Virtual Lover (Jimmy Edgar Remix)
Remain - Noses, Claudine and Horses
Tarjei Nygard - Hardkokt
Sanfuentes - Heatwave (Acid Dub)
DJs Pareja and Philip Gorbachev - Verish
Justin Robertson's Deadstock 33s - Summon The Primitive
Los Mekanikos - Sentimiento
Dense and Pika - Backstage Mute
Shadowdancer - Hydrate (Photonz Remix)
Alejandro Paz - Duro (Diegors Dub)
V.M.R. - Bowie (Eskimo Twins Remix)
Canyon Cosmos - Fear of Plastic (Pilooski Edit)
Cheval Sombre - Couldn't Do (Justin Robertson's Deadstock 33s Remix)

When that finishes you can switch straight to this three hour live set by Daniel Avery at The Boiler Room (Avery pointed out on Twitter last night that the comments he received were hilarious- 'not much of a dj set if there is no mixing or dance music? Got any sick drops?'). Free Soundcloud download here.

Saturday Mash Up

Mark Vidler, in his Go Home Productions guise, proves that a mash up of Shannon's peerless Let The Music Play and The Stones' equally peerless Gimme Shelter go together as well as bacon and eggs on a Saturday morning. Jim Morrison turns up at the start to provide the fried tomato (liked by some, loathed by others). Stoned. Immaculate. Fried mushrooms.

Shannon Stone

Friday, 8 November 2013

The Return Of Friday Night Is Rockabilly Night 126

Friday night picture- Eddie Cochran, just looking cool in double denim, leaning against a tree, strumming his Gretsch.

Friday night music- some late 80s Canadian rockabilly from The Razorbacks (who gained 'moderate national popularity' it says on Wiki). This is a rapid fire song about wanderlust and touring and rattles along just right, with a decent amount of slapback.

Friday night drink- I'll have one of whatever you're having for starters.

Restless For The Road

The Deep Hum At The Heart Of It All

There was a lovely Andrew Weatherall package that came out some time back- a special edition of author Michael Smith's Unreal City, with a 6 track cd soundtrack, a 10" record and the book itself loose-leaf, with Weatherall's hand written annotations around the text. A really nicely put together thing, from Faber. It was priced at £35, which I thought was a bit steep, but I got one for £20 from a popular internet auction site. The soundtrack is all low key, ambient noises and circular acoustic guitar patterns and Michael Smith reading parts of the book- not the sort of thing to listen to everyday but something to immerse yourself into and enjoy. You should definitely find yourself a copy, if they haven't already sold out.The one-sided 10" record was a remix of one of the tracks. Consider this as a taster.

The Deep Hum At the Heart Of It All (Weatherall Remix)

And many thanks to reader Jim from New Zealand who got in touch from the other side of the world regarding this matter.

Thursday, 7 November 2013

It's Wrong To Wish On Space Hardware

Billy Bragg's A New England, thirty years old right now, is one of the great lyrics of the latter part of the Twentieth Century. I know, a ridiculous claim, but there you go. The first verse has that almost nonsensical opening couplet about being 21 when he wrote the song but 22 now and the girls he knew at school who have already outpaced him age-wise and growing up-wise followed by the one half-rhyming pedestal and the pill. After the chorus 'I don't want to change the world, I'm not looking for a new England, just looking for another girl'- there's the brilliant verse combining the Cold War space race, shooting stars, wishing and unrequited love which is pure post-punk poetry...

I saw two shooting stars last night
I wished on them but they were only satellites
Is it wrong to wish on space hardware
I wish, I wish, I wish you'd care

The sparseness of Billy's rapidly strummed electric guitar adds to the early 80s lonesomeness. It may not be his best song but I don't think he's ever written a better lyric. He may have matched it but he's not bettered it.

Kirsty MacColl's cover version, below, is different- not better, not worse, different. Fuller, with a biggish pop production by husband Steve Lillywhite and two additional verses written for her by Billy. Number 7 in the pop charts in 1984.

A New England

Wednesday, 6 November 2013

Brass Shaker

Some sort of unholy trinity of artists going on here mixing up a classic house-acid brass delight. To clarify- Jeremy Deller's acid brass cover version of Voodoo Ray remixed by Optimo's JD Twitch, out on vinyl on Monday. And worth every penny I'd say.

You've Got Your Red Jeans On

I love this King Creosote song- from its accordion intro to its xylophone solo, and the little details fleshed out in the lyrics- the red jeans, leaving bootprints on lawns, the girl he fell for... It's got a video too, which I didn't know about until the night before last.

I had a niggling feeling about this post so I checked- I've posted this song before, in September 2011, with the same title as well. So here is My Favourite Girl instead (which is gorgeous and romantic) and as Drew pointed out last week, it's not often you can play a song and say 'just wait til you hear the accordion on this'.

My Favourite Girl

Tuesday, 5 November 2013

Perfect Day

This is not a New Order post- Stephen's t-shirt is the only link. Bernard looks like someone's pissed him off though (or he's suffering from gastric after-effects of that curry at lunchtime).

I've been listening to some Lou Reed recently- yes, because he died. I played New York all the way through, an album I don't think I've listened to in twenty years. I was surprised by how much of it was familiar which shows how much i must have listened to it in 1988-9. I saw him when he played London in the summer of '89, at Wembley Arena I think. The university year had just finished and I went straight down to stay with my friend Mr AN of Ealing and we trooped off to see Lou. He was good (which is surprising as I get the feeling he was pretty hit and miss live depending on his mood and level of contempt for the audience). He played New York in the first half and then some greatest hits in the second- I don't remember which greatest hits other than Sweet Jane and Rock And Roll, and he played them as they should be played rather than the butchered versions I've seen on TV at times. At one point he muttered something about all the sounds being played by 'real musicians no synthesisers or samplers' which narked me a bit because I was quite into both as you might have gathered by now, but other than that, a good gig and night out.

I found my cd re-issue of Transformer as well recently, an album I also know inside out but haven't listened to for ages. Bowie and Mick Ronson's work on it is superb and the songs sound great, in terms of arrangements and production. The lyrics are top stuff too, putting that gay, 70s New York vibe right out in front. Tacked on the end of the cd are two extras. This is the demo of Perfect Day, just Lou and acoustic guitar, slightly different lyrics and phrasing but interesting to hear. After a few seconds silence there is then a radio advert forTransformer. Worth a d/l I think. And miles better than that BBC ad which got irritating quite quickly.

Perfect Day (Demo)

And I found this too- Kirsty MacColl and Evan Dando's cover of the same song

Perfect Day

Monday, 4 November 2013

Zula Dawn

The new single from New York's Zula, called And More Business, is worth a few minutes of your time if you like a bit of psychedelic. The band take some cues from the edgier end of Manchester circa 1990 and the widescreen productions of dance records from the same time, Weatherall remixes that kind of thing- dancey, left field, groovy pop. The band have had some decent press recently with a review at Spin (where you can also stream the new album) and a mention in the New York Times following live shows at the CMJ. There's some real thought and time spent on the sonic aspects of their songs- breakbeats, delay pedals, general sense of space- and the wispy vocals cut across them nicely. The band would like to add that they are inspired by 'repetition and the transporting and revelatory experience of psychedelic, hypnotic space' and I can't put it any better myself.

There now follow a load of links- The Twin Loss e.p. is at Bandcamp. The forthcoming album This Hopeful can be pre-ordered on vinyl at Inflated Records. Their website is also worth popping in on if you want a further look at what Zula have been doing.

Sunday, 3 November 2013


This excellent song from Pete Fij (formerly of Creation band Adorable) and Terry Bickers (The House Of Love's mercurial guitarist) came my way the other day by way of the internet- it details a love affair gone wrong and a number of shops gone bust because of the recession. Remember folks, we're all in this together.

Saturday, 2 November 2013

One More Cover

This picture shows an early version of the selfie in the bathroom mirror, 1940s style. People don't change much- only the technology they use.

There are a lot of reggae cover versions of Clash songs once you start looking for them. I suppose this shows that their reggae songs (rather than their reggae covers) had a good deal of genuine reggae groove and spirit about them. This one, a cover of One More Time from Sandinista, combines some quality dub production with a digital/dancehall riddim and a real on-the-money vocal. Not too far from the kind of modern-but-70s roots reggae inspired stuff that Prince Fatty puts out. It's by Citizen Sound (featuring Prince Blanco and Ammoye), a Toronto based dj, producer and radio show host. Suddenly there are obscure Canadians popping up all over the place (see yesterday's rockabilly post).

One More Time

My half term week off has been dominated by DIY, a new kitchen to be exact. I never want to do anything like this again. It has worn me out. I have been to four different south Manchester B & Q branches since Monday, a total of eleven times, returning taps that didn't work or were dented, a sink that was fitted and then had the wrong clips to hold it in place, and getting various bits and bobs we suddenly needed but didn't have. As well as this we got a new worktop got jammed in between the walls which then cracked, leaving my father-in-law and myself spending the best part of an hour trying to maneuver it either in or out, anything just to move it. A hole for a sink in the same worktop was cut the wrong size leaving gaps around the edge, waste pipes didn't fit together, and a hob and oven were not delivered- and still haven't been. We have part two yet to come- tiling and more besides. I should add it is looking good now and a vast improvement on what we had before. I should also point out that my DIY skills are very rudimentary- I was the gopher, occasionally allowed to use a screwdriver or a saw (once). But I ain't doing it again once this job is finished. From this point on my preference for DIY is strictly punk and acid house related.

Friday, 1 November 2013

The Return Of Friday Night Is Rockabilly Night 125

Ronnie Hayward (and his Trio) have been bringing rockabilly out of Vancouver since 1984 and have played around Europe and North America ever since. This song mixes some hillbilly bluegrass into a rocking bassline and and a smart vocal.

Dedicated to Andy Coulson and Rebekah Brooks.

You Hound Ya Lie

Mr November

I like this picture of a Lego record shop, not that it's related to the rest of the post.

Someone asked me recently what I thought of The National and then got a bit huffy when I said 'yeah, they're alright'. 'What do you mean, alright, don't you like them?' he said. 'Yes, they're alright' I replied (that's a good alright, not a 'weeell, they're alright I suppose'- can you see the difference? I could. He didn't). They are alright- I quite like some of their stuff, not so fussed about a full album, some good songs that bear repeated listening (Apartment Story is stunning). And this one, I really like- it's more than alright.

I met Drew for a few beers the night before last. He was in town for work so we met in Didsbury's Old Cock and we talked about the things middle aged bloggers talk about- life and families; car troubles; The Clash, Joe Strummer and Mick Jones; that forthcoming Mary Chain box set; various Weatherall remixes; our favourite albums of this year so far (me- Asphodells, him- Daniel Avery); the Mercury Prize (yawn); how since turning 40 the lives of people around us have turned to shit; loss and illness; scooters and cycling, giving up smoking....

So, Drew (and L, Max and Leo), Tony (DVD), Davy, David (and the girls), Jacque and John, Harvey and Sam, Rachael and anyone else I've missed who's been through the mill recently one way or another, this song- a valedictory tale of a middle aged man looking back at his youth when he used to be 'carried in the arms of cheerleaders' and raging against the dying of the light- is for us, for all of us.

Mr November