Archive for June 18th, 2006

June 18, 2006

THE FRATELLIS – Henrietta (CD & 8″ Singles)

Henrietta CoverIsland CID938 / 8IS938: 12th June 2006
1. Henrietta
"Buy us some shoes, and maybe take us for Cola, we’ll get you there in some, filthy big Gondola"
2. Cigarello
"Won't you stay home and get drunk quick, I can wear your dress and your lipstick"
3. Three Skinny Girls
"Three skinny girls, left me on Sunday, just me in my lonely room, left me some sweet Macaroons"

'Henrietta' is loads of fun, particularly the triumphant Brass section. I also love the bit where they stop and go "Wah-wah-wow" like Fozzy Bear. But it doesn't quite match up to their first single, 'Creepin' Up The Backstairs'. But never mind because they've backed it with two absolutely killer B-sides…

From the hand-clap intro to 'Cigarello' I can only imagine how good it must be live. It's got thumping drums and all the crowd-pleasing thrills of a lost Sham 69 track. It also ends with a shout of "Fuck me, I canay believe it!", applause and howls of laughter. 'Three Skinny Girls' takes off where 'Cigarello' ended, with a toff exclaiming "I'm suitably fucked and ready to go". It's the shambolic sound of The Kinks after they've drunk the House Of Commons dry.

These are irresistible, straight up, head-banging, party tunes and yes, you read it right, 8" vinyl! (It won't fit in your 7" racks, but I'd buy it anyway).

Click here to watch the video for 'Creepin' Up The Backstairs' on YouTube.

The Fratellis Website / The Fratellis MySpace Page

June 18, 2006

THE DIVINE COMEDY – Diva Lady (2x CD & 7″ Singles)

Diva Lady CoverParlophone CDR6698 / CDRS6698 / R6698: 12th June 2006
1. Diva Lady
"She's got a famous boyfriend, they go out in style, she makes him look hetro, and he helps her profile"
2. Don't Blame The Young
"Resist the overwhelming urge, to punch them in the face, screaming, I'll give you every penny, I have ever made, to take your place"
3. Premonition Of Love
(Instrumental)
4. Births, Deaths & Marriages
"Today, a man got on my tram, and whiped his sweaty neck, and suddenly, I saw how he must look whilst having sex"
5. Elaine
"And I sure would be thankful, if appon the dock that day, is the one for whom I came, a young beauty, by the name… of Elaine"

'Diva Lady' instantly made me clap my hands together and click my fingers like The Supremes. This annalogy is quite appropriate since Divas like Diana Ross are the subject of the song. Neil Hannon certainly hasn't lost his touch writing a great tune. However, while the lyrics are also good, I can't help feeling that Hannon at his peak, would be able to cram in many more comic lines, given the 'Fish in a barrel' nature of the subject.

'Don't Blame The Young' sounds like a Neil Innes song, with it's cheeky Brass section and Musichall style. 'Premonition Of Love' sounds like an emotional sequel to 'In Pursuit Of Happiness' (It's less showy, but somehow more grand). 'Births, Deaths & Marriages' has got a Frank Sinatra swing about it (But when he whispers the word "Sex", it's just like Jarvis Cocker). 'Elaine' is a gentle Country inflected acoustic song about travelling across the globe to find a girl called Elaine.

Click here to watch the video for 'Diva Lady' on YouTube.

Here is a link to download a four track EP called 'A Short Album About Horses' by country and western tribute act 'The Devine Comedy' (Notice the 'E').

The Divine Comedy Website / The Divine Comedy MySpace Page

June 18, 2006

CIRCUITS – Radio Silence / Half Read Book (7″ Single)

Radio Silence, Half Read Book CoverTry Science Records TRYS001: 12th June 2006
1. Radio Silence
"No news like bad news, but the only news today, is that your old views are, resigned to yesterday"
2. Half Read Book
"This is taking some time, to come up with the reply, and the mirror on the wall, doesn't look me in the eye"

Musically this double A-side is pretty basic Pop-Punk, with a hint of Ska.  It just does it better than everyone else.  It made me want to dance around like I was having an Epileptic fit.

On 'Radio Silence' the words are belted out with an infectious joy.   It's got shouts of "It's not big! It's not clever!", and "Today" is sang in the same way that Freddie Mercury sang "Dayo!".  Behind the upbeat exterior is a lyric raging against the lazy media (God, If I here those fucking sheep use the word "Dour" to describe Gordon Brown one more time…  Try writing something original! Okay, Rant over).

'Half Read Book' is an internal monologue about self-defeat.  It describes disconnection from society in the same way that David Byrne often did.  Again the music is so gloriously exciting that this message is almost like icing on the cake (Speaking of unfinished works, I've got to get round to writing the rest of that "50 best albums ever" piece).

The lyrics to both songs are printed on each side of the cover as part of the artwork.  Why can't all bands do this, be proud of your lyrics guys.  If you join Circuits' mailing list, they'll give you an mp3 of 'Radio Silence' for free!  But you really need both these tracks.

Click here to buy the single from HMV.

Circuits Website / Circuits MySpace Page / Try Science MySpace Page

June 18, 2006

BATTLE – Children (CD & 2x 7″ Singles)

Children CoverTransgressive TRANS030CD / TRANS030 / TRANS030X: 12th June 2006
1. Children
"Grown men cry, all the time, maybe they're relatively heart broken, maybe they're relatively sad"
2. Talk Of Ghosts
"I want my feet again, the lights are off, I checked, I locked the windows and the doors"
3. Oxygen
"No matter what you sell, I still buy it, I still buy it, your devastating eyes, justifies it, justifies it"
4. Children (Union Of Knives Remix)
"I am just a human being, yeah, that is hardly worth dying for"

Here's single number four from Jason Bavanandan and the boys from Battle. If you've not heard Battle before, the easiest way to describe them is, Robert Smith fronting Bloc Party.

'Children' is all about Jason's performance. Like when he sighs "If we are the only ones" or the way he belches out words like "Children" and "Grown" like he's Linda Blair. Also when he shrieks "Take" it sounds like someone just jabbed a red-hot poker in his eye.

'Talk Of Ghosts's angry shouts of "You let your children down" links up with the A-side and I love the way Jason hisses "Start". 'Oxygen' is one of their best B-sides. It seems to equate being helplessly in love with our inability to survive without Oxygen. The 'Union Of Knives Remix' takes 'Children' in a dreamy electronic direction but it's a just a bit bland.

This single is good, but it's not quite enough. I'm still waiting for them to come up with something that eclipses their second single 'Demons'. As with all Battle's releases, it's accompanied by a wonderful painting by Melissa Bavanandan (I'm guessing she's Jason's sister).

Damascus mp3
Feel The Same (Jeremy Warmsley's Evil Words Remix) mp3
I Never Stopped mp3
One More Night mp3

Here are links to watch the videos for 'Children', 'Tendency' & 'Demons'.

Battle Website / Battle MySpace Page
Battle Fansite / Battle Blog / Transgressive Website