Monday, February 24, 2020

Songs About People # 1,077 Glenn Close


Glenn Closer is the actual name of the song but that's close enough in my book.


1980 Singles - # 48 Grace Jones


Grace Jones was one year away from her big statement, the Nightclubbing album. But frankly she made loads. Not least this. From her Warm Leatherette album. A cover of an early Chrissie Hynde song. Fabulous promo to boot.

Bowie's Books # 55 Anatole Broyard - Kafka Was The Rage






Song(s) of the Day # 2,224 Califone


I'm always very grateful to the A Pessimist is Never Disappointed blog, listed on the right hand side of my page for introducing me to all kinds of great music that I wouldn't come across otherwise. This, Echo Mine, the new album from Tim Rutili, formerly of Chicago's Red Red Meat, formerly under the moniker Califone is merely the latest example.


It's a layered, textured and resonant record. Experimental, in the traditions of Post and Math Rock, but accessible enough and reminiscent of seeing a great band that you weren't previously aware of in the midnight slot at one of the sadly now defunct All Tomorrow's Parties, alternative music festivals.


Songs don't really follow conventional patterns, but consistently evoke, smoky late night public scenarios. Rutili utilises space and silence to unsettling but impressive effect. I'm not quite sure how often I'll return to this as it's not necessarily an album that made me feel good,  but I was certainly completely absorbed by my first encounter with it.



Sunday, February 23, 2020

Album Reviews # 75 The Teardrop Explodes - Wilder


Indulging myself in a nostalgia wave at the minute, as indicated by my 1980 series. Also writing about this, as I saw Julian Cope play a week or so ago on Valentine's Day and he was just terrific. So, back to 1981 and 1982 to take a look at Wilder, their second and final album.



Really, 1980 had been the year that The Teardrops, (short-hand always seemed appropriate), had had their moment and genuinely threatened to break big. With Reward and Treason, both big hits and terrific expressions of what the 45 single could do, and Kilimanjaro an exuberant multicoloured wonder of a debut album.The world seemed to be laid out before them.


By the time they got to Wilder their race was almost run. Not that it's not as good as record as Kilimanjaro. I'd say it's just as good, probably better. But things had moved on, they did incredibly quickly back then. The Teardrops had lost their place in the spotlight. Changed too many band members, taken too many drugs, (it's all documented in the fabulous first part of Cope's memoirs, Head On), and band relationships were utterly  fraying at the edges.



Wilder is an incredible balancing act between the highest highs and the lowest lows, utter hedonism and the deepest melancholy. An almost perfect documentation of a psychedelic drug trip. If Head On is to be believed, and there's no real reason why it should not be, one long psychedelic drug trip was a pretty good description of exactly what being in Teardrop Explodes between 1981 and 1982 was like.


So from the cover shot of an out of focus picture of a bunch of flowers to the eleven tracks therein, (they are all great, not a weak link), Wilder is a case study of young men draining every drop out of early adulthood, because they can. The tunes are fresh and buoyant, Cope's lyrics and singing are at an absolute peak. Perhaps the slightly dated production values, (a Teardrop's flaw, Bunnymen records sound better in this respect forty years later), are the only thing I can hold against it. It was one of the first albums I ever bought, (in 1982 I think), and my copy still sounds good and plays with nary a crackle, despite goodness knows how many plays, a testament to the remarkable durability of vinyl.


If there is a precursor to Wilder's trip it's probably Love's Forever Changes, a masterpiece I didn't discover until a few years later. Cope was never shy about emphasising their inspiration to his writing processes and his mood here definitely echoes Arthur Lee's on that record although he's probably less murderous. He was more grounded I suppose, he makes no bones about what a happy loving family he was brought up in. In fact he never stops going on about it in interviews and his writing, more so than a musician I can think of. It's probably what saved him ultimately from the fallout he was going through here. Mercifully he's still going strong.


Because Cope's genius, and I do think he's a genius, is rooted in childhood. There are two or three moments on here that encapsulate that blessed state; Culture Bunker, Tiny Children and The Great Dominions. One of his great gifts is to appreciate what a sacred realm it is and to be able to map out its sunlit contours with impeccable accuracy. Just listen to the songs I've just mentioned. It's all there.


Wilder had one real hit single on it. Passionate Friend, the first song on Side Two. It shows how the Teardrops were every bit as much a Sixties band as a late Seventies and early Eighties one. It's a three minute warm bath in glorious melody and ba ba harmonies. Also a melodic quote from As Tears Go By in the fade out that is quite deliberate and utterly respectful. It's a blast! Cope was never ashamed to be happy and express his emotions and he lets rip here, in contrast to the raincoat wearing gloomy types he came up with in Liverpool and Manchester. He was always much more about the sun than the rain.


I find it difficult to choose favourite tracks on Wilder. Every song adds a piece to the puzzle, The record is probably just short of forty minutes long and not a second of it is wasted. The merits of the album were not truly recognised at the time.It was released at the end of 1981, too close to the Christmas rush and though it did sell, making the Top 30 in the British charts and eventually being certified Silver it didn't really chime with its times the way Kilimanjaro certainly had.


Because really it's an account of breakdown which was surely what Cope in particular was going through here. His is clearly the main voice here. The Teardrops were never a band in the way that the Bunnymen were, it was largely a full on fight between the two main egos in the band, Cope and keyboard player David Balfe, with Gary Dwyer, Troy Tate and Alan Gill strong supporting players and a cast of lesser ones.


Perhaps Wilder is more appreciated now than it was at the time. I hope so. It has plenty of light and plenty of shade all kinds of profound insight into the strange nature of existence. Great tunes too. What more could you want from a record. It's the Teardrops Heaven Up Here, their Closer, (surely no coincidence that these were the second albums by all three bands). Cope would re-emerge and produce a staggering set of solo albums over the years.  The sessions for their third album were farcical and abortive and though they did produce some decent material, (listen to the Everybody Wants to Shag the Teardrop Explodes album, released after they split), it wasn't really worthy of release and would surely have flopped.This is the Teardrop Explodes epitaph. And what a fine and worthy one it is.

As Cope himself said, what happened to them was surely inevitable. 'The band was never built to last... It was like building a house on scaffolding, on top of a tank moving at three miles an hour. The higher you built it the further removed you are from the reality that it's actually moving and it's going to fall.'





1980 Singles - # 49 The Selecter


1980 was very much the year of Two Tone. It had begun its wave in 1979 before but it really crashed to shore the following year. The Selecter put out an absolutely terrific debut album. They were always slightly lesser lights than Specials, Madness or Dexys, (not a Two Tone band but certainly implicated), but that didn't stop them being any less great. I could have posted either this or Missing Words. Missives of empowerment. 

Bowie's Books # 54 Douglas Harding - On Having No Head





Song(s) of the Day # 2,223 Peggy Sue


I Wanna be Your Girl, the opening track of Vices, the new album from Brighton's Peggy Sue is one of the most assured openings to a record I've heard this year. Grounded on guitar riffing that's pure late Velvet Underground and embellished with the kind of wry vocal delivery that Courtney Barnett has been specialising in during recent years, it sets the bar incredibly high for the rest of the album that follows.


Vices doesn't do too badly all things considered. Peggy Sue are relative indie veterans by now, having been putting out records and treading the boards since 2007. Hardly prolific, this is only their fourth album, but certainly consistent, this record delivers on all fronts without ever really breaking through to the spectacular.


The most relevant reference point here seems to be The Breeders. Peggy Sue give us Breeders lite, without the durm und strang but with plenty of melody, charm and layered dual female harmony. Perhaps a little formulaic at times but immensely enjoyable at the same time.


So if you know where they're coming from and where they're likely to go, Peggy Sue remain highly enjoyable company, like a catch up with a good though not great friend who you haven't seen for quite a while. These are people who know who they are and seem more than happy with their lot. Some of the tunes here ride a quite lovely melodic wave for their three or four minute course. Go on, indulge yourself!



Saturday, February 22, 2020

Things Found on My Local's Jukebox # 464 Francoise Hardy


Always my favourite Francoise moment.



Spinning Coin - Hyacinth


Glasgow's Spinning Coin first emerged about five years back with a splendid run of singles and a debut album Permo that sparkled and jangled as if there was no tomorrow. That LP came out in 2017 and they're just making their return with their second  Hyacinth, an indication that they might have been rethinking their approach somewhat during their time away. A cursory listen to the new record suggests strongly that this has indeed been the case.



While Permo was a refreshing and easy listen, it was always pretty clear where they were coming from and what their primary influences were. Postcard Records, to put it briefly, and more succinctly early Orange Juice, Hyacinth is a more sophisticated beast. Although they maintain their initial winsome appeal there is much more going on here. In short, they've matured, in an admirable, impressive and somewhat surprising way.


The songs still jangle and have the same brittle texture that made the band stand out in the first place. But during their sabbatical they have taken care to grow their own skin. While these songs are still evocative of the early eighties independent spirit of Orange Juice, Aztec Camera, Josef K, The Go Betweens  and The Pale Fountains, and later carriers of the torch, June Brides, Pastels and Vaselines there's also a growing confidence and dare I say it, backbone here, and a coherence and intelligence to how the record unwraps its charms song by song that seems to promise that this will prove one of the Independent guitar records of the year.



There's a good deal of transient beauty on display here. The trembling fragility of the delivery of vocalists Jack Mellie, Sean Armstrong and Rachel Taylor hints at hearts that always suspect they're about to be broken by the world. Calling the album after one of the most delicate flowers of all seems like an apt move. Everything here seems aware of the ephemeral nature of being. Spinning Coin. Catch them while their still spinning although Hyacinth is good enough to suggest that they may have some staying power despite all their protestations to the contrary.




1980 Singles - # 50 - The Boomtown Rats


Continuing on with a new series following on from yesterday's 1980 posts with a Top 50 countdown of singles from that year. Not all necessarily favourites of mine though the majority are, just trying to give a flavour of what that year was like. Only one song per artist because there was so much going on and the chart placement intended to indicate the value of the song and perhaps a comment on my assessment of the band or artist's significance in the scheme of things.

We start at # 50 with The Boomtown Rats. They had been major chart players with five top five hits in a rowover the previous couple of years and a couple of huge Number Ones. Perhaps 1980 showed the beginning of their decline success wise. Never the hippest of bands, they were opportunists at times but they delivered strong tunes and interesting themes and Geldof  was never less than a diverting frontman. Banana Republic came at the end of the year, appropriated loose reggae rhythms and made Number 3. The lyrics are a denunciation of the band's homeland The Republic of Ireland.

Bowie's Books # 53 Don Delillo - White Noise





Song(s) of the Day # 2,222 Sammy Davis Jr.


Writing something on this every day, I tend to make different To Do lists than normal people. Like      ' must listen to more Sammy Davis Jr. to find out more about his work.' So in the last few days I've tried to get beyond the great but overplayed Mr.Bojangles and Candyman. 


So here are three other options I dug up. Willoughby Grove, which I think was originally a Brook Benton song. Next Sweet Gingerbread Man which came from the soundtrack of The Magic Garden of Stanley Sweetheart. Then Baretta's Theme, a quite ludicrous venture into Shaft type Blaxploitation. He also covered the Shaft theme. Davis was pure Vegas showbiz of course. With no lack of ham and cheese. But his back catalogue is highly enjoyable.


Friday, February 21, 2020

Songs About People # 1,076 David Byrne


More 1980 I guess. A song for one of the main men of that year.




1980 Albums My List


This is me in round about 1980 with four of my best friends. From left that's Garth, Andreas, Ben, (RIP Ben,) myself below and Eddie. I was fourteen then fifteen, awkward and shy, not really quite myself yet. Music helped me very much to become myself in the next few years, certainly as much as anything else..

I probably only bought the XTC album in the actual calendar year. I also wasn't listening to much of this at the time, I've accumulated all thirty albums since. This is a fabulous list of records, mostly white and guitar driven, but I'd say that reflects generally what the best albums that year were. We were so spoilt for great stuff that year that excellent records by The Clash, UB40, The Human League, Adam & the Ants and Grace Jones among many others didn't make my list
  1. Talking Heads - Remain In Light
  2. Dexys Midnight Runners - Searching for the Young Soul Rebels
  3. The Cure - Seventeen Seconds
  4. The Beat - I Just Can't Stop It
  5. The Feelies - Crazy Rhythms
  6. David Bowie - Scary Monsters
  7. The Teardrop Explodes - Kilimanjaro
  8. Prince - Dirty Mind
  9. Joy Division - Closer
  10. The Jam - Sound Affects
  11. Young Marble Giants - Colossal Youth
  12. XTC - Black Sea
  13. Suicide - The Second Album
  14. Soft Boys - Underwater Moonlight
  15. Echo & the Bunnymen - Crocodiles
  16. Specials - More Specials
  17. Magazine - The Correct Use of Soap
  18. Japan - Gentlemen Take Polaroids
  19. Pylon - Gyrate
  20. The B52's - Wild Planet
  21. Pretenders - Pretenders
  22. Tom Waits - Heartattack & Vine
  23. The Undertones - Hypnotised
  24. Simple Minds - Empires & Dance
  25. Blondie - AutoAmerican
  26. The Psychedelic Furs - The Psychedelic Furs
  27. The Monochrome Set - Strange Boutique
  28. The Selecter - Too Much Pressure
  29. Peter Gabriel - III
  30. The Passions - Michael & Miranda

1980


Forty years. needless to say since 1980. It was probably the year that I became a sentient music listener, starting my record collection and beginning to develop my own tastes as a fourteen and then as a fifteen year old. It was a good time to start, being a particularly fabulous year for music as were the two previous years and the couple that followed. So with this in mind, I'm going to commence a little 1980 series on here. Starting with this, the Best Ever Album sites rundown of the best albums of that year, as voted by its readers.

Overall, it's a rather drab Top 30, not really reflecting the diverse and thrilling year it was musically. I have no objections to the first two records on the top of the list. They probably were the outstanding albums of the year. But elsewhere there's a lot of drab metal stuff that really doesn't appeal to me. You can keep your AC/DC. Dead Kennedys, Rush, Motorhead, Sabbath, Maiden, Ozzy and Queen. There was  much more exciting stuff going down. I'll return with my own Top 30 presently.
  1. Talking Heads - Remain In Light
  2. Joy Division - Closer
  3. AC/DC - Back in Black
  4. The Dead Kennedys - Fresh Fruit for Rotting Vegetables
  5. David Bowie - Scary Monsters
  6. Bruce Springsteen - The River
  7. Peter Gabriel - III
  8. Dire Straits - Making Movies
  9. The Cure - Seventeen Seconds
  10. Pretenders - Pretenders
  11. Rush - Permanent Waves
  12. The Feelies - Crazy Rhythms
  13. The Clash - Sandinista
  14. U2 - Boy
  15. Elvis Costello & The Attractions
  16. Black Sabbath - Heaven & Hell
  17. Motorhead - Ace of Spades
  18. Steely Dan - Gaucho
  19. The Jam - Sound Affects
  20. Iron Maiden - Iron Maiden
  21. The Police - Zenyatta Mondatta
  22. Prince - Dirty Mind
  23. Ozzy Osborne - Blizzard of Oz
  24. Bauhaus - In the Flat field
  25. Kate Bush - Never for Ever
  26. Genesis - Duke
  27. Queen - The Game
  28. Young Marble Giants - Colossal Youth
  29. John Lennon & Yoko Ono - Double Fantasy
  30. X - Los Angeles

Bowie's Books # 52 Giuseppe Tomasi Di Lampedusa - The Leopard



Song(s) of the Day # 2,221 Son Little


Tasteful, old school Soul album aloha just out from Los Angeles born Son Little. The description, 'worthy' can be something of a double edged depiction of a record in that it might bring forth assumptions of 'taste' in the slightly anodyne sense. This record does fall into that trap occasionally but there is enough genuine soul and unashamed sincerity as well as poise and grace to make much of this an absorbing listen.


As the record winds on its grip gets tighter. Some very good songs and an utterly soulful projection of them in the sense that you can almost hear the record weeping at points. There's much here that demands to be heard even for those who know the genre back to front. aloha re-tells tales that need to be re-told. In the end judgement it's 'worthy' in the sense that it's worth something and certainly worth listening to. 





Thursday, February 20, 2020

Songs About People # 1,075 Oliver Postgate


This gets rather lively considering its title references the none gentler maker of classic British children's TV programmes Oliver Postgate. Fish tank were formed in Broadstairs where Postgate also lived. Surely no coincidence. 


The Singing Detective # 20 Vera Lynn


All good things come to an end. Including this one. Appropriately, with Vera. 



Bowie's Books # 51 Ann Petry - The Street




Song(s) of the Day # 2,220 Polyrock


Probably all but forgotten now, Polyrock are little more than a footnote in the annals of late Seventies and early Eighties Post Punk. All jerky rhythms and syncopated intensity, they released a couple of albums in the early Eighties which are very much of their time yet still reward being listened to forty years on.


Polyrock stood out, if at all, for their Philip Glass influence and connection. He appeared on both their albums. Otherwise they were part Talking Heads, part Feelies, part Wire, part Devo, part Pylon. Never entirely themselves but likeable enough anyhow. Their eponymous 1980 debut is the place to start.


The songs here are diverting though hardly outstanding but it's a record I'll return to and might visit Discogs to purchase. Much of the time they're 'doing the robot' thang, a preoccupation of the time/ A slightly repetitive compilation playlist on this theme could easily be compiled with them on it somewhere. Somehow what was considered 'adult' at the time seems rather innocent at this remove.




Monday, February 17, 2020

Sunday, February 16, 2020

Songs About People # 1,071 Claudia Cardinale


The Third Mind is a band featuring Dave Alvin formerly of The Blasters and some remarkably named bandmates; Victor Krummenacher, David Immergluck, Michael Jerome and Jesse Sykes. Together they've just released a self-titled debut album. It's immaculately played but slightly cold though it definitely has its moments. Here is one, an instrumental for the Italian screen icon.


Fairport Convention


Chopchop - Everything Looks So Real



I've been listening to three new releases over the last couple of days. All noteworthy in quite different ways. The latest Tame Impala which I'll write about shortly. The first from Mush which I posted about yesterday. And this, Everything Looks So Real the astonishing debut album from Brighton Jazz Punkers Chopchop. I've been looking forward to hearing it since I first heard tracks from them last year. It doesn't disappoint for a moment.


Grounded in great musicianship of the Miles Fifties and Sixties school this could probably be an exercise in taste if it chose to be. Instead it takes a far more adventurous and riotous road, both in terms of its playing and most of all, the fabulous, demented free-form delivery of vocalist and frontman Xelis De Toro. One part Peter Sellers' Indian Doctor, one part Manuel from Fawlty Towers, one part his madcap self, he's a perfect focal point for the raging storm Chopchop brew up. Making perfect sense yet none at all at one and the same time.


This is beatnik politico expressionism of the finest order. De Toro and compadres deliver the kind of record you've probably never quite heard before. Anarchic, surreal, angry, literate, taking it's cues from John Lydon and David Byrne as well as Andre Breton and Franz Kafka while tipping its hat to Cannonball Adderley. It's also very timely, painting a vivid and striking picture of the moment of flux we find ourselves in.


Full of questions that demand to be answered about the direction we seem to find ourselves going in. De Toro voices the agonies of a man swimming against the torrent of a river in full flow. In Lifetime he takes his lead from Talking Heads Once in a Lifetime to rail against the madness of multicultural societies in denial of the fact that whatever happens they will remain multicultural societies. In This is Not Your Home he continues on the same theme quoting from P.J.Harvey's astonishing Glastonbury appropriation of John Donne. The bell tolls for thee mate. It tolls for thee. It's all equally apposite, thought provoking, amusing, stirring and highly, highly enjoyable.


I really hope this album breaks out beyond the confines of Brighton hipster-ism. Because it's a record that deserves to be heard. Never resting for a moment, raging against the dying of the light. Funky, funny, full on and full of fire. As Bob Dylan and Johnny Nash both knew. there are more questions than answers. Enjoy yourselves. It's later than you think. Altogether absolutely fabulous! Make sure you hear it.





The Singing Detective # 16 Jack Payne & his Orchestra




Bowie's Books # 47 Raw Magazine




Song of the Day # 2,216 The Bachs Lunch


I can tell you nothing about The Bachs Lunch except that this comes from 1967 and is the B Side of a version of Will You Love Me Tomorrow that is not diverting as this. Bach is the key. A companion piece for Left Banke and Zombies devotees.

Saturday, February 15, 2020

Mush - 3D Routine


Leeds band Mush have been on my radar for a couple of years now. Ever since their astonishing nine minute debut single Alternative Facts which BBC Music DJ Mark Riley played the life out of. It's now getting on to three years since then and after a number of EPs their first album 3D Routine has finally arrived.


So how is it? The first thing Mush might have going against them is singer Dan Hyndman's delivery. It's annoying. It might almost be meant to be annoying. It's certainly goofy. Bands who present themselves as a humorous concern almost inevitably leave themselves a mountain to climb. There's a reason why Joy Division are more revered than The Rezillos.


What Mush have definitely got going for them is an astonishing Post Punk angular guitar scaffolding. Part Television, part Wire, part Gang of Four, part Josef K. They are really quite bewilderingly inventive throughout the twelve tracks on show here. You would have thought that this particular seam was quite exhausted but Mush prove this is far from the case.Some of the guitar explorations here are thrillingly bruising.


So how to equate Hyndman's quirky approach with the excellence of the musical framework. Perhaps by imagining what Television would have sounded like had Richard Hell ousted Tom Verlaine from the band rather than the other way round. Because Hyndman certainly sounds rather like Hell and he was a man whose intent was certainly serious even though his approach often made it seem like he was primarily playing for laughs.


There's certainly seriousness in the record's lyrical concerns. Brexit Britain, island mentality, chlorinated chicken, alternative facts. We're living in a world that is almost beyond parody. Perhaps this goes some way to explain their modus vivendi. By the end of the record where they give Alternative Facts another run out, (and why not, it's an astonishing statement), I was convinced. Certainly enough to make sure I check the band out when they come to my home town next month. 3D Routine may appear on the surface to be wacky but don't let that put you off. There's much more here than meets the eye.




Songs About People # 1,070 Anais Nin


One for one of the great Twentieth Century bohemians.


The Singing Detective # 15 Al Jolson




Bowie's Books # 46 Alberto Denti Di Piranjo - A Grave For a Dolphin


'I wish you could swim. Like the dolphins, like the dolphins can swim...'


Song of the Day # 2,215 The Great Scots


Halifax, Nova Scotia, 1965. Some Byrds. Some Stones. Some melody. 

Friday, February 14, 2020

Valentine's Day


Increasingly way back when. Still sounds good though.

Rolling Blackouts Coastal Fever


Melbourne's Rolling Blackouts Coastal Fever have a really safe pair of hands. Sturdy and reliable rather than spectacular this doesn't stop them being damned good. Like the baseball player who rarely hits the ball out of the park but consistently notches singles and doubles and helps runners into home base. This, Cars in Space, keeps their average buoyant and comes ahead of their second album a few months down the line.

Things Found on My Local's Jukebox # 462 The Velvet Underground


I'm gradually importing my record collection into The Newcastle Arms as is my wont. Great to have The Velvet Underground's 1969 Live album there. It reminds me of my first term at university having just turned twenty, as well as being simply my favourite live album of all. This, an absolutely barnstorming nine minute version of What Goes On is a real highlight, far superior to the studio version and an indication of how the late Velvets managed to ride even the loss of John Cale to become a quite superlative road band and lay down the template for the entire recorded career of Dean Wareham at the same time.



The Singing Detective # 14 The Mills Brothers




Bowie's Books # 45 Keith Waterhouse - Billy Liar




Song of the Day # 2,214 Bell Streets


Nick Batterham and Josh Meadows used to be in Australian bands like Blindside, The Earthmen, The Supergliders and The Steinbecks in the Nineties. No, me neither. Now they're together as Bell Streets and this is some appetiser for their forthcoming album Monument, which arrives in April. This pitches its tent somewhere between a less cynical Luke Haines, Grant McLennan and The Clientele.

Thursday, February 13, 2020

The Singing Detective # 13 Bing Crosby & the Andrew Sisters




Bowie's Books # 44 J.B.Priestley - English Journey




Songs About People # 1,069 St. Boniface


Staying Dutch, I've spent the last few days playing and playing The Homesick's wonderful The Big Exercise, and also familiarising myself with their equally addictive first album Youth Hunt. This is from that. St. Boniface was born in Crediton, Devon and was a leading figure in the Anglo-Saxon mission to the Frankish Empire during the 8th Century. He has quite some story. Respect to the guy.


Lewsberg


Continuing the Dutch theme, here's something from Rotterdam's Velvet Underground and their forthcoming second album In This House which is with us in a couple of months.

Song(s) of the Day # 2,213 Korfbal

Holland day on here today.


Twisting familiar materials into startling new shapes. That's what seems to be going on with Dutch alternative guitar pop right now. First, The Homesick, whose wonderful new record The Big Exercise, I wrote about at the weekend. Now, compatriots Korfbal, whose exuberant debut album, Special Agent I've just chanced upon. This seems to be just the tip of the iceberg of the scene out there at the minute. Evidently plenty going on in The Netherlands at the minute.


Special Agent is a really thrilling record. Inspiration points are not obvious by any means. Korfbal plot their own journey. The guitars are sparky, the tunes positively bouncy. Korfbal is an odd Dutch ball game that has never caught on anywhere else. Korfbal the band are equally idiosyncratic, but with luck will attract greater international recognition.




Wednesday, February 12, 2020

Things Found on My Local's Jukebox # 461 Creedence Clearwater Revival


Had a brief online conversation with one of Arbor Labor Union following my review of their latest record New Petal Instants. They thanked me for it and confirmed that this particular song is an inspiration for them. The barnstorming opener to Cosmo's Factory.