March 31, 2008
Here’s another selection of fine mp3s rocking my personal world at the mo’ (Instead of proper reviews).
I’ve long been a fan of the peculiar way Adam Green combines lush orchestration and crooner vocals with his disturbing and nonsensical lyrics. His brand new ‘Sixes & Sevens’ album jumps genres with gleeful abandon and ‘Twee Twee Dee’ represents a fun jaunt into summery Disco-Pop.
Adam Green – Twee Twee Dee mp3
(Buy Album) (MySpace)
Various Production’s last single made it into my Top 100 Of 2007 so I had to pick up this Remix. They give the track an extra Electronic shine enhancing the weird stoned Hip-Hop vocal.
Dave Cloud – Puff Rider (Various Production Remix) mp3
(Buy 7”) (MySpace)
Elbow do “Epic” particularly well so this seven minute B-side to new single ‘Grounds For Divorce’ is typically brilliant.
Elbow – Hotel Istanbul mp3
(Buy Single) (MySpace)
When the Guillemots are good… boy are they are good. New B-side ‘What We Have’ has the kind of pedigree you’d expect from an old Sam Cooke number.
Guillemots – What We Have mp3
(Buy 7”) (MySpace)
‘In A letter’ is an improbably vibrant bit of Rap-Ska. Like The Ordinary Boys… but good.
Imperial Leisure – In A letter mp3
A few people have been covering this Rhianna hit (Personally I hate the original song). The Manics do a good job at convincing me I was wrong.
Manic Street Preachers – Umbrella mp3
A one line song but damn great Brazilian Punk-Funk for it, given that extra injection of fun by CSS.
Tetine – I Go To The Doctor (CSS Remix) mp3
(Buy 12”) (MySpace)
One of Scroobius Pip’s best tracks which puts this into some rarefied territory.
Yila (Feat. Scroobius Pip) – Astronaut mp3
(Buy 7”) (YouTube) (MySpace)
I’m really into this Acid-House infused 1988 single from Manchester’s finest at the moment.
New Order – Fine Time mp3
(Buy Album) (YouTube) (MySpace)
Here’s another version of The Wire’s theme tune. This is from the first series and it’s still probably the best.
The Blind Boys Of Alabama – Way Down In The Hole mp3
(Buy Album) (YouTube) (MySpace)
March 9, 2008
“Who will pay the price if injustice such as this, turns our protectors to oppressors, and angry men to terrorists, oh freedom, what liberties are taken in thy name”
Finally Billy Bragg’s new album is here, his first since 2002′s ‘England, Half English’. ‘Mr Love & Justice’ is an album about relationships with a bit of politics subtly mixed in. Only three or four songs are overtly political, tackling subjects like rendition, marketing/corporate-malpractice and PTSD. He’s taken the unusual step of pleasing everyone by releasing the record as both a full-band album and as a stripped-down acoustic recording. My votes with the solo version, I’m of the opinion that too much instrumentation often dulls the power of Billy’s songs.
Billy Bragg – I Keep Faith (Solo Version) mp3
If you liked that, click here to buy ‘Mr Love & Justice’ from HMV.
If you’ve never heard Billy Bragg before (Wow you’ve been missing out!) then here are my favourite tracks from each of his other eight albums:
A New England mp3 (His calling card and a hit for Kirsty MacColl)
It Says Here mp3 (The media doesn’t change in twenty odd years)
Levi Stubbs’ Tears mp3 (Guitars like arrows piercing your heart)
The Price I Pay mp3 (Just a great love song, through and through)
Blake’s Jerusalem mp3 (A passionate reading of the WI anthem)
Everywhere mp3 (About the Pacific conflict and maybe his best song)
From Red To Blue mp3 (New Labour seen through old Labour eyes)
Distant Shore mp3 (A beautiful, compassionate song about refugees)
WHEN you love those, click here to buy all eight albums in two handy deluxe boxsets.
Click here to read Billy’s blog, with a downloadable audio documentary.
Click here to download a new interview where Billy discusses the new album over a cup of tea.
Click here to watch a charming clip of Billy and Kate Nash performing together.
Click here to get three free mp3s from Billy Bragg’s official Website.
Click here to get Get Cape. Wear Cape. Fly’s new album, featuring a quick appearance by Billy Bragg and a longer appearance by Kate Nash.
Billy Bragg Website / Billy Bragg MySpace
March 8, 2008
“A higher purpose gives an easy way, to wash away the guilt and numb the pain”
I just got the new single from Sam Duckworth (The album’s on it’s way in the post). I’m a bit unsure about the A-side ‘Find The Time’ since it goes a bit Beatles-pastiche in the middle. However, the B-sides are great including a big Coldplay-ish song called ‘All Falls Down’ and a fine cover of Jimmy Eat World’s ‘Praise Chorus’. But the best of them is a stark acoustic song called ‘The Bigger Picture’ directed like a personal letter to the Christian architects of the “War On Terror” questioning how their faith could lead them to such actions.
Get Cape. Wear Cape. Fly. – The Bigger Picture mp3
Hopefully the album will be as good as the free taster track ‘Waiting For The Monster To Drown’.
Click here to buy the album.
… and click here to get the free sampler track (DRM Free!).
Get Cape. Wear Cape. Fly. YouTube Channel
Get Cape. Wear Cape. Fly. Website / Get Cape. Wear Cape. Fly. MySpace
March 3, 2008
“So I seem to lose the peace, a common riot on the common streets, we love the rose but we hate the rule, for private land and for private schools”
‘Satellites’ was one of the first live-demos I fell for nearly two years ago when Orphan Boy first showed up on my radar. Now I’ve just got a promo of their album through the door and they’ve gone into the studio and done the song proud. It’s a proper bit of raw Punk not the usual pale Indie variety. The lyrics have got the detail of Weller and the anger of Strummer, listen to the way Bob Cross roars the chorus. ‘Satellites’ could be huge if they release it as a single. This the England we love but it’s also the England we hate.
Orphan Boy’s debut album is out in April on Concrete Recordings. Start saving up your pennies now, your gonna need to get this record.
Click here to pre-order the new single ‘Alderley Edge’.
Orphan Boy – Satellites mp3
You can check out some of Orphan Boy’s vids on Concrete’s YouTube channel by clicking here.
Visit the MySpace page to get a couple of free mp3s.
Orphan Boy MySpace
March 3, 2008
Mute CDMUTE377: 18th February 2008
“He ended up like so many of them do, back on the streets of New York City,
in a soup queue, a dopefiend, a slave, then prison, then the madhouse, then the grave”
Sometimes I love Nick Cave’s angelic side and sometimes I dislike the devil in his more acidic recordings. New single ‘Dig, Lazarus, Dig!!!’ manages to be everything that’s great about Nick Cave. A murderous lyric, violent Blues and a spoken word vocal reminiscent of ‘The Gift’. ‘The Gift’ is a great song but you couldn’t imagine it being played on the radio, where as ‘Dig, Lazarus, Dig!!!’ could be Cave’s biggest hit.
The video for ‘Dig, Lazarus, Dig!!!’ is thrilling, while still looking cheap as chips. B-side ‘Accidents Will Happen’ is damn good too, making this a fine package to spend your coppers on.
Dig, Lazarus, Dig!!! (Video) on YouTube
Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds – Accidents Will Happen mp3
Nick Cave MySpace