Archive for March, 2007

March 31, 2007

MIKA – Love Today: Patrick Wolf Remix (Promo 10″)

Island WOLF10PRO: 19th March 2007
Love Today (Patrick Wolf Remix)
“I said, everybody’s gonna love today, gonna love today, gonna love today”

Mika’s recent arrival on the Pop scene was greeted by uncertainty from my ears. Was he a gloriously camp Pop pixie or an over the top, irritating, derivative, poor man’s Scissor Sister. I decided he was the latter.

Then I purchased this 10″ because the genius hands of Mr Patrick Wolf had touched it. He’s taken the Mika track and rubbed it’s shiny face in the dirt of cut-up, glitchy Electroclash. Very little of the original remains, a blessing I thought, but then I listened to the original for comparison. I found myself dancing about, failing to sing along to Mika’s stupidly high falsetto, and pretending to play along with the furious Art-Rock Guitars. God-damn-it Mika rules, curse you Patrick Wolf you’ve made me loose all semblance of musical decency.

Since this is a promo only Remix and I don’t think it’s going to get an official release, I’ve uploaded it for your musical pleasure (Check Ebay if you want the physical thing):

Mika – Love Today (Patrick Wolf Remix) mp3

Click here to watch the fantastic video for ‘Love Today’ on YouTube.

Click here to buy Mika’s ‘Life In Cartoon Motion’ album from HMV for only £8.99.

Mika Website / Mika MySpace
Patrick Wolf Website / Patrick Wolf MySpace

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March 25, 2007

MANIC STREET PREACHERS – Underdogs (7″ Single / Free Download)

Columbia 88697075597: 19th March 2007
“This ones for the freaks, beaten down and lost, the shy and withdrawn, or just out of touch”

The lord be praised, a new Manics single! They rank amongst my all-time favourite artists and I’ve got almost all their records (Within financial constraints). The two fantastic solo albums have tided me over since the limited edition ‘God Save The Manics’ EP from two years ago, but this ones the real deal… “This ones for the freaks!”

I haven’t heard the as-yet unreleased ‘Send Away The Tigers’ album that this single is gleamed from, so I couldn’t comment on that. However, ‘Underdogs’ is a savage return to the kind of thunderous Rock ‘n’ Roll that made their debut album so much fun. Specifically, it brings to mind the “Us against them” anthemic qualities of songs like ‘Stay Beautiful’ (It even has the line “You’re so Beautiful”). It’s got a menacing Bass line from Nicky, violent Drums from Sean and best of all, cataclysmicly massive power-chords from James.

‘Underdogs’ is released as a super-limited 7″ (You’re gonna have to check Ebay for it) and as a free mp3. You can get ‘Underdogs’ by signing up for the mailing list on the MSP Website.

Here are eight rarities I’ve dug out from my collection. Enjoy, and then click here to pre-order the new album from HMV for only £8.99.

Antarctic mp3 (Japan only bonus track)
Bright Eyes (Live 1994) mp3 (Haunting acoustic cover from Richey’s last gig)
Happy Ending mp3 (Greatest Hits B-side)
Let Robeson Sing (Ian Brown Remix) mp3 (Witness Ian’s rapping skills!)
Little Trolls mp3 (Cassette only B-side)
Sculpture Of Man mp3 (Holy Bible B-side)
She Is Suffering (Acoustic) mp3
Too Cold Here mp3 (Holy Bible B-side)

Manic Street Preachers Website / Manic Street Preachers MySpace

March 17, 2007

HAVANA GUNS – N.Y.C.S. (7″ Single)

Cigarette Music CIG7003: 19th March 2007
1. N.Y.C.S.
“I, I’m gonna find a new city, a new land my friend, and I, I’m gonna find, ’cause I’m mean, and I will last”
2. I Want To Die
“I know she will come to me, show me who I’m going to be, dragging myself through your empty streets, shivering from the heat”

‘N.Y.C.S.’ or “New York City Sky” is the second single by London based band Havana Guns. It’s a powerful combination of Zoë Durante’s yearning vocals and a propulsive music that brings to mind The Strokes and The Velvet Underground throwing a big Pop party. The vocals have a confidence and richness that you don’t find in most five-piece bands and it’s got that intoxicating “Pulling out of here to win” Springsteen vibe. ‘I Want To Die’ has got a catchy riff and warm Debbie Harry vocals and sounds like The Long Blondes at their best.

You can order the ‘N.Y.C.S.’ or ‘She Always Goes Down’ 7″s straight from Cigarette Music’s Website for just £2.49 each.

Havana Guns – N.Y.C.S. mp3
Havana Guns – I Want To Die mp3
Havana Guns – She Always Goes Down mp3
Havana Guns – The Snake mp3

Here are links to watch videos for ‘N.Y.C.S.’ and ‘She Always Goes Down’ on YouTube.

Havana Guns Website / Havana Guns MySpace / Cigarette Music Website

March 14, 2007

BRAKES – Cease & Desist (7″ Single)

Rough Trade RTRADS391: 26th February 2007
1. Cease & Desist
“Now can’t you hear the angels crying, their songs of love are now songs of dying”
2. We Saw Jerry’s Daughter
“We were walkin’ down the road at night, brothers and sisters were goin’ nowhere, peace and love were not around, trouble and strife was everywhere”
3. Huevos Rancheros
“I got a bird that whistles, honey got a bird, honey got a bird that sings”

‘Cease & Desist’ fuses bits from ‘Paperback Writer’ with Brakes’ own brand of aggressive Punk-Pop to tell the tale of God playing poker against Satan and losing.  ‘We Saw Jerry’s Daughter’ is a cover of Camper Van Beethoven remade in the style of Pixies.  ‘Huevos Rancheros’ is an all too brief forty-seven second thrasher that rocks as hard as anybody.  This is from a band that had two songs on their debut album that clocked in under ten seconds each.

Click here to watch the video for ‘Cease & Desist’ on YouTube.

Click here to buy the single as mp3s from Rough Trade Digital for £2.49.

Brakes Website / Brakes MySpace

March 14, 2007

GET CAPE. WEAR CAPE. FLY – I Spy (Re-Issue CD & 7″ Singles)

Atlantic ATUK056CD / ATUK056X: 26th February 2007
1. I Spy (Radio Mix / Metronomy Mix)
“I don’t care, that this song has a melody, or that the beats are not complex, I’m just trying to make you sing and not be perplexed”
2. War Of The Worlds (Napster Acoustic)
“You know I could be, everything you want me to be, no we haven’t spoke in days, yeah in fact it’s been a matter of weeks”

Get Cape. Wear Cape. Fly’s great single ‘I Spy’ gets a third release (Or fourth, if you count the album) here in a barely altered ‘Radio Mix’. Fortunately it comes with a couple of new tracks to make it worth buying. First there is a stripped back acoustic version of last single ‘War Of The Worlds’. It’s got a pain to Sam’s voice and a beauty to the music that the album version doesn’t have and the gorgeous new Cornet solo is wonderful. The ‘Metronomy Mix’ is an odd one, it goes beyond retro-80s-sheak into simply dated. At points, it sounds like a drunken attempt to play the theme from Rocky on a cheap synthesiser. That said, there is something strangely fascinating about it which makes me keep wanting to listen again and again… weird.

Click here to download a Zip I made of Sam’s recent Live Lounge session. It includes a radical re-working of Gossip’s ‘Standing In The Way Of Control’.

Click here to buy the Get Cape. Wear Cape. Fly album, which is still at an amazing £6.99 from HMV.

Get Cape. Wear Cape. Fly Website / Get Cape. Wear Cape. Fly MySpace
Glass Houses Fan Site

March 14, 2007

LCD SOUNDSYSTEM – North American Scum (CD EP)

DFA/EMI DFAEMI2165CD: 26th February 2007
1. North American Scum (Original / Kris Menace Remix / Onastic Dub)
“I hate the feelin’ when you’re lookin’ at me that way, cos we’re North Americans, but if we act all shy it’ll make it okay, it makes it go away”
2. Hippie Priest Bum-Out
“Instrumental”

It’s been a while but James Murphy is back with his distinctive blocked-up-nose vocals, crunching electronics and witty lyrics. ‘North American Scum’ is about his annoyance at being made to feel he should apologise for being American because Bush is so unpopular in Europe. It’s like Randy Newman’s ‘Political Science’ meets a robotic cover of ‘My Sharona’. Thank god LCD Soundsystem are back with singles as good as this!

The ‘Kris Menace Remix’ is a blissful House version and James’ own ‘Onastic Dub’ is a mix of bouncing Bass fuzz and glitchy retro computer sounds. Both are largely instrumentals, which is a shame as the words are the best bit. Boring instrumental ‘Hippie Priest Bum-Out’ is especially disappointing given the quality of previous LCD Soundsystem B-sides like ‘Yr City’s A Sucker’.

Click here to buy the new album ‘Sound Of Silver’ from HMV for only £8.99.

LCD Soundsystem – Yr City’s A Sucker (Full Version) mp3
Randy Newman – Political Science mp3

Click here to watch the video for ‘North American Scum’ on YouTube.

LCD Soundsystem Website / LCD Soundsystem MySpace

March 14, 2007

THE INDELICATES – The Last Significant Statement To Be Made In Rock ‘n’ Roll (CD EP)

Sad Gnome Records SG0701: 26th February 2007
1. The Last Significant Statement To Be Made In Rock ‘n’ Roll
“Once in a corridor in Memphis, was a singer took a breath, and wrote the birth of the teenager, now we come to write his death”
2. Sixteen
“Drop ace drum ‘n’ bass feat Hitler and Chairman Mao, if we don’t do it now then someone else will, it’ll be so funny, it’s the power not the money”
3. Heroin
“My heroine is on heroin, but not bad heroin, the good heroin that Rock stars take”
4. Unity Mitford (Acoustic)
“The indescribable beauty of a million hands raised to salute you, like poppies lean when winds caress them, cut flowers pressed to solemn duty”
5. Stars (Live)
“I’m in love with the boy next door, he treats me like a filthy whore”
6. The Last Significant Remix
“We’ve learned a lot of bitter lessons, seen the way ideas age, seen the lies and the boredom, seen the coming final page”

‘The Last Significant Statement To Be Made In Rock ‘n’ Roll’ kicks off with a menacing riff and turns into a tirade against the lack of real passion in music. It’s not as gobsmacking as their last single ‘We Hate The Kids’ but then again it’s a much more lyrically subtle beast. The words of ‘Sixteen’ continue in a similar vein of dissatisfaction but this time they’re soundtracked by sparkling Pop with an addictive handclap break. It’s a more direct assault against cynical bands who aim their music at the lucrative teen market. ‘Heroin’ is an ironic look at the falsely glamorous image Heroin has in the music world. It’s a piano lament, with some of the best rhymes ever, like “She’s not dirty, she’s past thirty”.

The last three songs are sort of bonus tracks, one acoustic, one live and one remix. ‘Unity Mitford’ was an associate of Hitler and the mother of Mosley’s wife. ‘Stars’ is a song about the transience of life with the kind of Guitar noodling not heard since Queen’s heyday. Lastly, ‘The Last Significant Remix’ is a deep remix in the style of mid-period Prodigy.

Click here to buy the EP from Sad Gnome Records (You can still get the ace first single too).

The Indelicates – Julia We Don’t Live In The 60s mp3
The Indelicates – New Art For The People mp3
The Indelicates – Vladimir mp3
The Indelicates – Waiting For Pete Doherty To Die mp3

Here are links to live videos of ‘The Last Significant Statement To Be Made In Rock ‘n’ Roll’, ‘Heroin’, ‘We Hate The Kids’ and ‘Fairytale Of New York’ on YouTube.

The Indelicates Website / The Indelicates MySpace
Sad Gnome Records Website / Sad Gnome Records MySpace

March 13, 2007

WE ARE THE PHYSICS – Fear Of Words / This Is Vanity (CD Single)

One Records OR017: 26th February 2007
1. Fear Of Words
“A word’s a bullet piercing me, text vitriol potentially”
2. This Is Vanity
“Vanity constructs me, vanity still haunts me”

We Are The Physics’ primitive beat, manic Guitars and frenetic speed bring to mind a more insane version of The Eighties Matchbox B-Line Diaster… if such a thing is possible to comprehend.  ‘Fear Of Words’ is a song about the power of words, language and letters but it’s screamed at such a pace that these particular words are hard to hear (Luckily the EP comes with printed lyrics).  ‘This Is Vanity’ is loud and exciting but the lyrics are too sparse and the vocals sound too much like Brian Molko for my liking.

Here are links to watch videos for ‘Less Than Three’ and ‘This Is Vanity’ on YouTube.

We Are The Physics MySpace

March 12, 2007

PARTY BEN – mp3 Downloads

I was first blown away by Party Ben’ skills when I heard his seamless blend of Company B and Yeah Yeah Yeahs. When I went to his site I was delighted to discover he’s sharing hours of mashed-up fun. If you were wondering what the original unreleased version of Coldplay’s ‘Talk’ sounded like with the Kraftwerk sample then ‘Computer Talk’ might be the closest you’re gonna get. ‘Galvanize The Empire’ had me mentaly re-editing footage of Star Wars to fit the music.

Below you’ll find those three tracks and six of my other favourites but I reccomend spending a weekend sampling the many other delights on offer on his brilliant website. Most tracks are accompanied by a self-depricating review from the man himself. There’s mp3s, videos, artwork and full length mixes, check it out.

Chic Vs The Beastie Boys Vs Franz Feerdinand – (Triple) Freak Me Out mp3
Coldplay Vs Kraftwerk – Computer Talk mp3
Lyrics Born Vs The Average White Band – Callin’ Up The Pieces mp3
Company B Vs Yeah Yeah Yeahs & Diplo – Fascinated By Gold mp3
The Chemical Brothers Vs John Williams – Galvanize The Empire mp3
Michael Jackson Vs Nelly Furtado – Promiscuous With You mp3

The White Stripes Vs Eric B. & Rakim & Coldcut – Pump Up The Doorbell mp3
Eminem – Without Me (Party Ben’s Nobody Listens To Techno Remix) mp3
Meco Vs Public Enemy Vs Earth Wind & Fire – Bring The Wars mp3

Party Ben Website

March 12, 2007

THE POLYPHONIC SPREE – Wait (CD EP)

Good Records GRR010: 26th February 2007
1. Mental Cabaret
“This mental cabaret is dancing with my fate, oh, this sexy impression’s left me engaged with a game”
2. Love My Way
“There’s emptiness behind their eyes, there’s dust in all their hearts”
3. Sonic Bloom
“A sonic bloom, a total emotionless excuse, I can’t believe it happened to me, the magic’s in my heart, believe me”
4. Lithium
“I’m so happy, cos today I found my friends, they’re in my head”
5. I’m Calling
“It makes me so cold, today my heart is like an empty room”

This new EP is a taster for The Polyphonic Spree’s forthcoming album ‘The Fragile Army’ and their first release since 2004’s ‘Together We’re Heavy’ LP (A personal favourite and a hard act to follow).  ‘Mental Cabaret’ and ‘I’m Calling’ have the usual massive life-affirming chorus’ of “I’m on my way” and “If I can make it, I’ll make you proud”, respectively.  The music is nothing new but that doesn’t bother me when it’s this lushly orchestrated.

The middle three tracks are covers exclusive to this release.  ‘Love My Way’ is a Psychedelic Furs song, ‘Lithium’ is of course by Nirvana and ‘Sonic Bloom’ is a song by Tim DeLaughter’s old group, Tripping Daisy.  ‘Sonic Bloom’ is wonderful but the real pleasure is hearing the other two very familiar tracks given The Polyphonic Spree treatment.

I confess that I’ve got a rather nerdy habit of carefully reading every word of a record’s liner notes.  So I discovered that the small print of this EP says if you illegally copy it you’ll be subject to “Criminal prostitution”… so you’ve been warned!

The Polyphonic Spree Website / The Polyphonic Spree MySpace