hope you find what you’re looking for (What is ambergris?)

January 14, 2011 § 1 Comment

Snowblink – Ambergris [download]

 

My best friend is currently going out with a girl who he has been crazy about for quite a while. Pretty cool to see them both so happy even if the rest of us are struggling through half promises and nightclub glances with new faces and the girl next door. Happiness for others is a bit cliche and hard to hear about without feeling like an angry prick, so I should probably not go too big time in this aloud thinking. Snowblind catch the mood so nicely, they have had to battle against Warpaint for a spot on my recently played list, but it is too hard not to think about the gorgeous things in life, or lack thereof, when you’ve got glockenspiels, layered picked apart acoustic guitars and Canadian vocals. AND Fire Records (their current label) used to work with a 1000 Mexicans (the band)… non-stop sombrero connections going on right now.

 

New album out February 15th, HIGHLY recommended.

marcus

 

p.s. Warpaint are amazing.

 

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Smudged and Scratched.

January 10, 2011 § Leave a comment

Johnny Reb – Crumbs

 

I wanted to give this song to George to work on, being such a massive fan of The Libertines / The View and the rest of the Landan Tan ramshackle brigade. But now we’ve got the easy comparisons out of the way it’s easier to enjoy the track, The constantly dancing lead guitar gives does give a nod to Carl Barat but also has edges of energy and recklessness that make me want to put on a Dirtbombs vinyl. The saxophone, played by Morrissey member Boz Boorer is is almost too fitting for the mood, bordering on ridiculously Camden and actually this has one of my favourite outros as the humming sax and the double bass raise an eyebrow before someone swears loudly.

 

This kind of music has not had enough of a spin in the last few years, mainly because there are some terrible bands trying to bring it back. Johnny Reb are not one of these bands, give them a spin.

 

 

marcus

Johnny Flynn, Live.

January 5, 2011 § 1 Comment

Johnny Flynn – Been Listening [album]

Happy days waking to the Exeter Phoenix to see Johnny Flynn close his UK tour. Ran into a girl I have always fancied a little bit and sorted her out with a guest list spot with a super suave phone call and nod. boom. Upon getting into the Phoenix we notice Mr. Flynn himself having a very amicable chat with the large majority of my university lecturers. Bottle of beer later and we are in.

In support were the extraordinary Melodica, Melody and Me and Basia Bulat, anyone who reads this blog a bit will know I’m a sucker for M,M+M. However Basia Bulat was a name I had only read before on the same bill as a Slow Club show so expectations were high. Both were good enough to steal any show.

When it was the time for Johnny to get to the stage the place started to pack out and it became more and more apparent that I was both older and more male than a huge majority of the audience (with the exception of the massive man who swayed about in front of my face). In fact the audience seemed hell bent on stealing the limelight from The Sussex Wit. One crazed lady attempted a dialogue about whether Johnny would like a cup of tea, another voice broke a near perfect silence in Been Listening to tell the poor guy that his phone had gone off. The reaction to the mention of The X Factor was extarordinary.

But Johnny Flynn and The Sussex Wit have been working too hard on this tour to give the yelling crowd too much of a platform. They were too busy playing a tight set filled with the kind of musical quirks and wonderful energy that make live shows such a treat. There is an indisputable mood and tone to many of Johnny Flynn’s songs, a mood of boys and their fiddles, lonely radios and travelling souls who are wasting away. All of which come to life and take on new energy on the stage. I love artists like Laura Marlin, Mumford etc. who have a great knack of taking emotions and feelings which a contemporary audience can identify with and then putting them through the slant of a world devoid of the contemporary angle. It works so well, or at least it would if the 13 year girl standing next to me wasn’t uploading photos to facebook at the same time.

But this is maybe a cynical and pretentious point, the fact is I had a great night and when the encore came in the form of The Box there could be no denying that everyone was having a great night.

Johnny Flynn – The Box

marcus


Paper Anniversary

January 3, 2011 § Leave a comment

Fly Union – Long Run [rightclick]

“Old best friends, new strangers”

We are 1 years old today. And as of today We are the not the same We that we were.

Welcome to Dan and Milly who are no longer the much loved occasional guesters they were last year but are now full time contributors.  As well as doubling in population we have also given the blog a wipe over just to clean things up a bit. All in all we are getting our shit together for good year. Thankyou for making our 1st year so good.

Anyway, I chose this song because it’s bit different to the usual stuff we put up on here and it’s very good. And, being a bit of a sentimental man, I like the parallels between the lyrics and blogging.

We’ve come a long way from this time last year

much love

Marcus

If there’s anything to say

December 29, 2010 § Leave a comment

The Good Natured – For The Windows In Paradise

 

Last night I didn’t say enough. I could not figure out how I felt, what I wanted to things to be or what was the best way of making that happen. Blinded by the infatuation felt within a 5cm radius.

“Like a father to impress…I’ll do anything for you”

Whether it’s parents or lovers or non-smoking older brothers, there is always bullshit. Always trivial long distances or turns of phrase or hideous rationality that needs to be navigated around to get through to the beauty.

 

This song sums that up pretty good… maybe. I’m pretty sure there is nothing like a bit of teenage angst to make any song fit your last night.

Band Meeting

December 27, 2010 § 1 Comment

Eastern Conference Champions – Timeline (How We Got Off The Mountain)

One of my top bands of the year has to be Eastern Conference Champions. Their 2nd and excellent EP Akustiks dropped earlier this month and in a year that has seen them featured on soundtracks to Gossip Girl and Twilight I’m putting it out there that 2011 will be a great year for this band. Timeline works for me because it is so understated yet kinda epic too. The vocals feel like they have been spread over the microphone with a spoon, a little bit like mayo in the most awesome sandwich ever. Actually I would put this song up there as about as satisfying as your favourite sandwich. A glorious balance of texture and flavours. Glorious.

Eastern Conference Champions – Don’t Think Twice It’s Alright nom nom nom

we are working on some plans and adventures for the new year, as we approach our 1st birthday there is lots to think about and even more to do. So keep reading, that’s very important.

marcus

Wrapping

December 23, 2010 § Leave a comment

Last post before Christmas is upon us.

Paper. Paper is to be my theme for today.

A) Because I am going to do a fair bit of present wrapping which will involve a fair amount of the stuff.

B) I was just going to to a post on Paper Tiger but then saw how many excellent bands have the word paper in them. Here are 3 of them

C) I want an iPad and so am preparing myself for an existence in which paper is a sentimental luxury which only old fashioned morons bother with.

Paper Tiger – Bully Plank


Cant get much better than smooth-pouring basslines, drums to make your shoulder dance with your neck, and sampled beat pianos that repeat and repeat until they find their feet before closing their eyes to meet and to greet you. Then put that through a reverse pedal. Paper Tiger is the best name for any kind of musical adventure and Bully Plank is one of the best songs I’ve heard this year.

 

Papercranes – Knew You When


Papercranes are one of several bands that I listened to thanks to a compilation put together by Michael Stipe about 6 years ago for Uncut Magazine. Along with Tilly and The Wall, Vic Chesnutt and Bright Eyes there was Knew You When. Gentle yet weighted and very beautiful, it hurts to skip this.

 

Paper Aeroplanes – Lost

Thanks to Beat Surrender for this pretty thing. There should be something melodramatic about twinkling piano flickers, the  faded, vintage footed guitars/vox and horizon-watching strings, and in a way there is with Lost but it has to be that way. Female vocals are wonderful.

 

 

Before I break for Christmas, have a listen to the Distorted Disco Records Christmas Compilation it is very good.

 

love

marcus

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