Archive for April, 2007

April 29, 2007

MP3 OF THE WEEK: The Rumble Strips – Motorcycle (New Version) mp3

“But it’s all just a dream, I’m actually moving quite slowly, the air is nice and clean, but my bicycle seat is so lonely”

I had to get a copy of The Rumble Strips’ re-recording of their debut single ‘Motorcycle’ but it’s not out until June, so I grabbed a promo CD off of Ebay. It’s one of the most completely satisfying productions I’ve ever heard and it sounds like the band are right there in the room with you and every instrument is distinct. To borrow a metaphor from the song, the original was a rickety old pushbike and this new version is a roaring Harley-Davidson!

The Rumble Strips – Motorcycle (New Version) mp3

Until June, you can buy old Rumble Strips releases from 7Digital and HMV.

Click here to watch the original classic video for ‘Motorcycle’ on YouTube.

The Rumble Strips Website / The Rumble Strips MySpace

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April 27, 2007

MP3 bonanza!!

For the last fortnight, I’ve had serious problems with uploading files and general bandwidth issues. I’ve been tearing my hair out, but thanks to the guys at Box.Net tech support the problems are fixed, and to celebrate here are twelve random but brilliant mp3s…

Badly Drawn Boy‘s best single in years gets that little bit better thanks to The Go! Team:
Badly Drawn Boy – A Journey From A To B (Go! Team Remix) mp3

One of Phil‘s finest moment gets enhanced by some edgy Bloc Party beats:
Bloc Party Vs Phil Collins – She’s Hearing Voices In The Air Tonight mp3

Highlight and title track from Bobby Conn‘s (Pictured above) brilliant new album:
Bobby Conn – King For A Day mp3

An extract from Demetri Martin‘s bizarre and hilarious live comedy CD:
Demetri Martin – Some Jokes mp3

This Eddie Cochran song is 50 years old and still fresh as a daisy:
Eddie Cochran – Summertime Blues mp3

Example raps over a cut-up of Tracy Chapman courtesy of his incredible producer Rusher:
Example – I Need A Fast Car (With Tracy Chapman) mp3

Insanely catchy Pop song with a possibly unique subject matter from the ex Modern Lover:
Jonathan Richman – I Was Dancing In The Lesbian Bar mp3

Lee Hazlewood uses American Football as a metaphor for the Iraq war:
Lee Hazlewood – Baghdad Knights mp3

The best track from the essential ‘Yellow Pills: Prefill’ compilation:
Luxury – Green Hearts mp3

Pablo‘s mind-blowing track created from cutting up countless Accapellas and stitching them back together:
Pablo – Story Of Sampling mp3

Apparently, soon to be covered on The White Stripes‘ new album:
Patti Page – Conquest mp3

Weird Al‘s pisstake of James Blunt‘s infamous single, officially unreleased due to objections from Blunt’s record label (Even though Blunt gave the go ahead):
“Weird Al” Yankovic – You’re Pitiful mp3

April 27, 2007

LUKE TOMS – Peace By Myself (CD & 7″ Singles)

Island 1730054 / 1730055: 23rd April 2007
1. Peace By Myself
“It’s the darkness I hate, alone and afraid, you being here helps a bit, she sits, but that’s not enough for her”
2. Crazy
“You can’t be sure, ’til I’m out on that floor, can’t you see, it’s meant to be”
3. She
“She’s not denied, when she’s in sight of men who desire her completely”

‘Peace By Myself’ is an emotional Piano lament graced with a rare grandeur and is easily the best thing the boundlessly talented Luke Toms has released so far. He evokes the supreme Glam-Pop of Bowie, Jobriath and Cockney Rebel and tempers it with an emotional realism. ‘Crazy’ is a roller-coaster composition taking in everything from Brass-Bands to jaunty Harpsichords. ‘She’ is a haunting song blessed by the gorgeous Mellotron and the sighing of angels which for reasons that I can’t quite explain reminded me of Nirvana. With this release, Luke Toms has moved from a new artist with an ear-catching debut single and a few quality mp3s, to a fully rounded talent who looks set for success.

Click here to watch one of the funniest tour films I’ve ever seen, via MySpace Video.

Luke Toms – What’s More Important? mp3

Click here to watch the video for ‘Fools With Money’ on YouTube.

Luke Toms Website / Luke Toms MySpace

April 27, 2007

THE HEAVY – That Kind Of Man (7″ Single)

Evil Kitty EK002: 23rd April 2007
1. That Kind Of Man
“I been thinkin’ ’bout our love, show me something, cos what you give is not enough”
2. Who Needs The Sunshine?
“Don’t need no big train, or Cigarette, I got more’n I need, to complete the set, and make picturesque”

‘That Kind Of Man’ is Psychedelic, fuzz Guitar, distorted monster worthy of Led Zeppelin but the vocals have the sweet soul tones of Curtis Mayfield.  Soul music that makes you want to head-bang and make the sign of the devil… surely not?  B-side ‘Who Needs The Sunshine?’ is something totally different with the spine-tingling vocals of a rasping Nina Simone.

The single is available to buy from ‘Don’t Touch Recordings’ by clicking here.

The Heavy Website / The Heavy MySpace / Evil Kitty MySpace

April 26, 2007

ARCTIC MONKEYS – Brianstorm (CD EP)

Domino RUG254CD: 16th April 2007
1. If You Found This It’s Probably Too Late
“Clinically cynical, hereditary hate, if you found this, it’s probably too late, approaching the pinnacle, and money now are mates”
2. Brianstorm
“I wonder are you puttin’ us under, cos we can’t take our eyes off the T-shirt and ties combination, well see you later, innovator”
3. Temptation Greets You Like Your Naughty Friend (Feat. Dizzee Rascal)
“She said, we’ve got that spark, but it only lights a fuse up, to see in the dark”
4. What If You Were Right The First Time?
“Betwixt and between, the fantastic dream and the fear, d’yer wonder where she is, this afternoon”

Arctic Monkey’s last couple of non-LP releases found them struggling to cope with the pitfalls of sudden fame. They were solid songs but the lyrics didn’t seem to have the same witty spark, Alex just didn’t seem to be having as much fun. This new EP is altogether different and much more playful. Immediately ‘If You Found This It’s Probably Too Late’ wrong foots the listener by starting with a short orchestral prelude, before a banshee howl announces the arrival of crashing Drums and visceral Guitars that sound like sirens. It’s an all too brief thrasher that slams to a halt just in time to hear Alex shout “It’s nothin’ on the early stuff”… I have to disagree.

The title track ‘Brianstorm’ probably has this year’s best lyric on line two with “So kind of you to bless us, with your effort-less-ness”. Musically it’s the Arctic Monkeys back to their tight, efficient best. ‘Temptation Greets You Like Your Naughty Friend’ is the highlight of the EP and features a Rap break from Dizzee Rascal that’s got to be the finest thing he’s done since ‘Fix Up, Look Sharp’. Finally, ‘What If You Were Right The First Time?’ sounds like a raging Grunge soundtrack to a 50s Sci-Fi movie.

Arctic Monkeys – Baby I’m Yours mp3 (Sublime B-side cover)

Click here to get three Arctic Monkeys mashups including ‘Arctic Monkeys Vs Roots Manuva’.

Click here to buy the new ‘Favourite Worst Nightmare’ album from HMV for only £8.99.

Click here to buy the EP as mp3s, aac or wma files from 7Digital.

Click here to watch the bewildering video for ‘Brianstorm’ on YouTube.

Arctic Monkeys Website / Arctic Monkeys MySpace / Arctic Monkeys Fansite

April 23, 2007

Leeroy – Drummies (7″ Single)

Jakarta JAKARTA007: 16th April 2007
1. Drummies
“Instrumental”
2. Fireball
“Instrumental”

‘Drummies’ is the new single from Leeroy, previously of French Hip-Hoppers ‘Saïan Supa Crew’. The combination of Sitar and Flute make it sound like the theme tune to some long forgotten 70s spy show set in India. B-side ‘Fireball’ blends frenetic scratching, Trumpets and Pianos with Indian and French vocal samples. This 45 is Blaxpoitation meets Bollywood at The Go Team‘s house and both tracks are included on Leeroy’s new ‘Bollywood Trip’ album.

Click here to buy ‘Bollywood Trip’ from Amazon for £10.99.

Click here to watch the video for ‘Drummies’ on YouTube.

Leeroy Website / Leeroy MySpace / Jakarta MySpace / Saian Supa Crew MySpace

April 22, 2007

MP3 OF THE WEEK: Coldcut – Stop This Crazy Thing (Feat. Junior Reid)

“See what they doin’, people are starvin’, children are cryin’, animals are dyin’, governments who lie to you, don’t let them tell you what to do”

‘Stop This Crazy Thing’ (From Coldcut’s 1988 ‘What’s That Noise?’ album) has been a favourite track of mine for a few years. I was introduced to them by my older brother, who actually painted a 7ft mural of the sleeve (Shown above) on his bedroom wall. One day last week, I was listening to ‘Stop This Crazy Thing’ on the walk home from work and it suddenly struck me like a lightning bolt, that it was the greatest recording ever laid down by the hand of man! (‘Cos sometimes only hyperbole will do).

It’s a dense collage of samples, and learning where they all come in is the fun part. After countless listens I can mimic all the bits like “Do you like, scra, scra, scra, scratchin'”, “Okay fellas gimme the works” and “Meanwhile back in the jungle”. Each time I put it on I seem to notice something new, for example, as I listen now, I’m thinking “I didn’t notice those Crickets before?”. Junior Reid’s ecologically conscious anti-capitalist lyrics are just as relevant today, almost 20 years later.

Coldcut – Stop This Crazy Thing (Feat. Junior Reid) mp3

Click here to buy Coldcut’s absolutely essential new ‘Sound Mirrors’ album from HMV for just £8.99.

Click here to get a copy of the out-of-print ‘What’s That Noise?’ album from Ebay.

Here are links to watch incredible videos for ‘Stop This Crazy Thing’, ‘Timber’, ‘True Skool’, ‘White Christmas At The White House’, ‘Atomic Moog’, ‘Everything Is Under Control’, ‘The State We’re In’, ‘World Of Evil’ and ‘Re:Volution’ on YouTube.

Coldcut Website / Coldcut MySpace / Junior Reid MySpace

April 22, 2007

HERMAN DUNE – I Wish That I Could See You Soon (CD & 7″ Single)

Source ETC SOURCD126/SOUR126: 16th April 2007
1. I Wish That I Could See You Soon (Original / Lisa Li-Lund Version)
“And if you wait a little my pretty friend, until I come back to hold your hand, we’ll be like bugs when they break through cocoons, you know I wish that I could see you soon”
2. I Wish I Had Someone That I Loved Well
“You said I wish that my last name was easier to spell, and I wish I had someone that I loved well”
3. Song Of Samuel
“And she said father I am still your child, but I see how mad you could be, please let me be Samuel’s bride, as he means everything to me”

‘I Wish That I Could See You Soon’ is like a glorious meeting of minds between Paul Simon and Israel Kamakawiwo’ole. I love the charming way he sings “And I was like… and she was like” before some of the lines and the way his voice wavers on the word “Spoon”. ‘I Wish That I Could See You Soon’ is a single so laid back that I can almost feel the sand between my toes and the fading evening sun on my face. Lisa Li-Lund provides the angelic backing vocals on the single and she’s also done her own version for the B-side. It’s a Lo-Fi acoustic/Drum-Machine cover that brings to mind a fragile Kirsty MacColl.

‘I Wish I Had Someone That I Loved Well’ is a beautiful poem that reminded me of Louden Wainwright III at his best. ‘Song Of Samuel’ is a love story described with such warmth, grace and skill that it’s like a chilled out Dylan. ‘I Wish That I Could See You Soon’ is taken ‘Giant’, their 5th or 6th Studio album… boy have I been missing out!

Click here to buy Herman Dune’s new ‘Giant’ album from HMV for only £9.99.

Here are links to watch delightful videos for ‘I Wish That I Could See You Soon’ and ‘I Wish That I Could See You Soon (Work In Progress)’ on YouTube.

Herman Dune Website / Herman Dune MySpace / Lisa Li-Lund MySpace

April 20, 2007

DAN LE SAC VS SCROOBIUS PIP – Thou Shalt Always Kill (7″ Single)

Lex Records LEX044: 16th April 2007
1. Thou Shalt Always Kill (Original / Knifehandchop Remix)
“Thou shalt not judge a book by it’s cover, thou shalt not judge Lethal Weapon by Danny Glover”
2. Angles
“Things in life aren’t always quite what they seem, there’s more one given angle, to any one given scene, so bare that in mind next time you try to intervene”

I had ‘Thou Shalt Always Kill’ for ages as a low quality demo, then a brilliant session recorded for XFM and now the final version is released at last. I’ve been listening to Scroobius Pip since my brother recommended him to me a year ago on the first part of his fantastic ‘Listen To This’ series. Without so much as a pause for breath, Scroob lists his personal pop-culture commandments, slays Rock’s Holy-Cows and hails national treasure Stephen Fry while wittily dismissing incomprehensibly average Pop-Metalers Lost Prophets. To fully appreciate this tune, I suggest following Chuck D‘s advice “Learn the words, you might sing this”.

Knifehandchop’s remix is an essential bit of Electro freakery but the omission of most of Scroob’s words left me wondering if it could have been so much more. ‘Angels’ was just one highlight from Scroobius Pip’s brilliant 2006 album ‘No Commercial Breaks’. Dan Le Sac’s remake was one of the first collaboration tracks I heard but it was called the ‘DJ Sackboy Remix’. Instead of the minimal Beatboxing of the original, Dan’s laid down a pulsating production that builds in intensity, mirroring the escalating anger of the words. It’s a sobering lesson on how our actions can effect other people in ways that we can hardly conceive.

The 7″ is hard to come by, but you can buy it digitally from Bleep, 7Digital, Rough Trade Digital and Play Louder.

Here are links to watch videos for ‘Thou Shalt Always Kill’ and ‘Unspoken Word Poetry’ on YouTube.

You can buy ‘No Commercial Breaks’ via PayPal on Scroobius Pip’s MySpace page for just £7. You won’t regret it.

Scroobius Pip – 1000 Words mp3
Dan Le Sac – Times Change mp3

Click here to read some of Scroobius Pip’s lyrics. Witness the genius.

Dan Le Sac Vs Scroobius Pip MySpace / Lex Records Website
Scroobius Pip Website / Scroobius Pip MySpace
Dan Le Sac Website / Dan Le Sac MySpace
Knifehandchop Website / Knifehandchop MySpace

April 20, 2007

ORPHAN BOY – Postcode (CD Single)

Concrete CONC007: 30th April 2007
1. Postcode
“The flats at night are silhouettes, with burned out cars like cigarettes, the corner shops are living wrecks, the sun won’t shine through those metal shutters”
2. John Mellor
“Trying hard to forget your manners, half-cut on cheap whiskey, my vision was blurred, still I know that John Mellor had been there”

‘Postcode’ is a terrifying snapshot of the UK in the 21st Century akin to watching Tim Roth‘s 1982 film ‘Made In Britain’. Rob Cross’ vitriolic screams of “I got the noose made out for you” don’t sound like an idle threat, he means it. It’s a voice that brings to mind PIL era Lydon and the music has the raw savagery of Punk in it’s early vital days. But under the seething vocals and dirty Guitars there’s a Pop core with the Drums reminding me of 60’s girlgroups.

‘John Mellor’ was the real name of Joe Strummer and Orphan Boy’s song is a passionate and personal tribute to the great man. It’s testament to Joe Strummer that he can still inspire bands to such heights of adrenaline fuelled celebration.

Click here to watch the video for ‘Postcode’.

Click here to pre-order the single from HMV.

Orphan Boy Website / Orphan Boy MySpace / Concrete Website