Archive for April 13th, 2009

April 13, 2009

TEN4SE7EN: Episode 34

This week, as far as printed material goes, I can highly recommend two titles I’m currently reading; Frank Miller’s ‘Batman: Year One’ (It’s got a great deal more subtlety than I’d expected) and Über-Genius Alan Moore’s ‘Tom Strong’.  As far as recorded material goes, I heartily recommend the following ten tunes:

Akron/Family’s ‘River’ is like a gorgeous response to the Neo-Prog of Manchester’s Elbow from the other side of the Atlantic.  The plethora of odd instrumentation, military Drums, distinctive lyrics and it’s Jazzy air make for something refreshingly new.

Mark Everett has been firing out books, documentaries, live albums and compilations since his last magnificent opus ‘Blinking Lights & Other Revelations’.  But ‘Fresh Blood’ (From his new LP ‘Hombre Lobo : 12 Songs Of Desire’) is his first new material under his celebrated Eels moniker in four years.  It’s unmistakably Eels yet also unlike anything he’s done yet, combining head crushing Drums and sinister Bass Guitar.

The excitingly named Ezra Bang & Hot Machine!!! bring a bit of schizophrenic Rap called ‘We On Top Of This’.  They chuck a load of Public Enemy and Simian samples in a blender while Ezra spits political fury.

Nashville MC Future’s new ‘The Sci Fly EP’ is great from start to finish.  But I had to pick one track, so I plumed for the catchy and witty rhymes of ‘Cleaning Out My Hard Drive’.  It’s an ode to the little ways that all these modern life-enhancing devices and websites actually make all our lives impossibly complicated.

Kasabian kindly made new track ‘Vlad The Impaler’ available for free as a taster of their bizarrely titled new album ‘West Ryder Pauper Lunatic Asylum’.  It’s got all the elements you’d expect; crunching Electronics and pounding Drums, delivered with all the aggression of the Gallagher brothers declaring war on Transylvania.

The news that Manic Street Preachers’ forthcoming album would be entirely based on left-over lyrics by Richie had me (And probably the rest of the world) apoplectic with excitement.  So it’s a massive relief that the first track I’m hearing ‘Jackie Collins Existential Question Time’ is an exhilarating slice of them at their vitriolic best.

Neil Young’s latest superb album ‘Fork In The Road’ has an overarching automotive theme.  The title track is a swampy highlight, spitting fiery Blues at the Politicians and the Bankers.  I’m duty bound to love the line “Keep on bloging ’til the power goes out, the batteries dead… twist and shout!”.

Portal’s ‘Options’ brings to mind New Order at their melancholy best.  The lyrics are full of superb ear-pricking lines like “All I want is a place to dream, a velvet rope round my self-esteem”.

‘Black Star’ is the best cut from Tokyo Black Star’s new ‘Black Ships’ album (That’s allot o’ black!).  The addition of Rich Medina’s vocals make for a song not unlike Barry White getting all spiritual over a hypnotic House track.

Tom Middleton’s ‘Return To Atlantis’ is a big, bold, cinematic Instrumental.  The sound-effects, tranquil Strings and humming Bass are truly intoxicating.  I’d love to hear somebody like Ty lay some rhymes over the top.


Akron/Family MySpace / Purchase
Eels MySpace / Purchase
Ezra Bang & Hot Machine!!! MySpace / Purchase
Future MySpace / Download
Kasabian MySpace / Purchase
Manic Street Preachers MySpace / Purchase
Neil Young MySpace / Purchase
Portal MySpace / Purchase
Tokyo Black Star MySpace / Purchase
Tom Middleton MySpace / Purchase

Here is Kasabian’s video for ‘Vlad The Impaler’.  Watch as Noel Fielding goes all Vincent-Price and terrorises a bunch of horror-movie dames with his massive rod!: