Sunday, 31 August 2014

TRACKS OF THE WEEK - 31/08/14, Jamie T, Interpol, Leonard Cohen, Roo Panes, Jamie N Commons and X Ambassadors

Five tracks to kick back in your Facekini to

Roo Panes - Tiger Striped Sky (2014)

Singer-songwriter-Burberry Model, Roo Panes seems to have everything. A good looking chap who has a considerable vocal range (He sounds like Scott Matthews) and a talent for well-crafted songs. Roo’s musical education came in part from his grandmother, a classical concert pianist, the hymns of his local church and in part from his parents’ collection of Nick Drake and Bob Dylan records. Hailing from a small town in Dorset, Roo’s surroundings have a strong influence on his music.

 “Think I’ll write a tale of my own / I’m going southbound where the ocean is flirting with the coast / And tell me why / I’m underneath a tiger striped sky”.

 His debut album, ‘Little Giant’, is avaiable for pre-order exclusively through PledgeMusic or pick it up when it is released in October.

Old Pa's Corner :-
Leonard Cohen - Almost Like the Blues (2014)


This is really exciting, another album of songs by Leonard Cohen. This new song is really just the spoken word with some excellent backing to compliment the dark lyrics (whats new here then). The song is from the new album Popular Problems released  on the21st September. Bring it on please.

Shell Hunter:-
Jamie N Commons & X Ambassadors - 'Jungle' (2014)

Each time I hear this song it reminds me of Howlin' Wolf's Smoke Stack Lightnin'. It's the raspy blues voice and raw sparse backing that does it. Looks like I hit the nail on the head with that because Jamie N Commons, although born in Bristol, moved to Chicago with his family when he was 6 and was submerged into all things blues and musical. He later moved back to the UK and began to pursue his career in London when he was 18. He's got a winning voice with dark landscapes comparable to Tom Waits, Nick Cave, Mark Lanegan and Leonard Cohen. X Ambassadors are an alt-rock band from New York and got noticed by the lead singer from Imagine Dragons who insisted they were given a record deal. This track seems like a marriage made in heaven or a jungle even... 

London Scouser:-
Interpol - 'All The Rage Back Home' (2014)

Interpol are a band that I really like whilst not seeming to know much about them at all. I thought 'Evil' was brilliant and my other favourite is 'Mammoth'. This track is everything I've come to like about the band, a great dark sound and catchy chorus which gets me singing along and the video reminds me of a Guiness advert. Not much else for me to say really. Maybe this time I will look into them a bit more, especially as they are releasing their 5th album 'El Pintor' on the 08th of September.

Jamie T - 'Don't You Find' (2024)

Jamie T has this Marmite-esque musical quality, you either like him or don't but you can't deny his talent. I thought his 2007 debut, Panic Prevention, was good in parts but I thought it a bit gimmicky, like a male version of Kate Nash (a tad harsh maybe, I must listen to it again to see if I can exorcise that) but his second, Kings and Queens was a firm favourite of mine in 2009. 'Don't You Find' snuck up on me after a couple of listens, particularly the poignant lyrics about a love lost. His new album, Carry on the Grudge is due out on September 26th, with 'Zombie' being the second single to be release from it. Click here to hear it.

Listen or even better, subscribe to our tracks of the week playlist here...

Saturday, 30 August 2014

Beastie Boys - 'The Sounds Of Science'

Repeat Prescriptions....The Top 100 Classic Albums Of All Time that you keep coming back to!

Like doing a university course as a mature student, I am returning to my musical education and filling in the gaps. I intend to revisit The 100 Best Albums Of All Time (see them all here) as recommended by Q Magazine back when the poll was last done in 2006. Some I will know and love, some I will have skimmed and some I will not even have given time of day. This will all change when I listen to every album in full as it was intended, from 100 to 1, and choose my favourite song from each.

Album Number 98: Beastie Boys - Paul's Boutique - The Sounds Of Science (1989)

It's the first album I know I have heard before so was looking forward to revisiting it. After listening to a few tracks I realised how unfamiliar a lot of it was. Did I actually listen to the whole album before? I probably just skimmed through it to my favourite songs Hey Ladies and Barrel Of A Gun. I was a cheat! Listening to it a few times now and having to remind myself this was from back in 1989, it's easy to see why this is in the Top 100. As their tough second album after being nicknamed Frat rappers, they put to bed the idea they were just a commercial novelty act. These guys were for real and were here to stay. You can't deny the authentic old school hip hop sound with brilliant break beat and samples, it makes me feel like break dancing! The album is brimming with comical but clever quips and the chemistry between the group is infectious. And what's more, there isn't a line about guns, gang banging, bitches, hoes or money in sight!

It was a tough call to choose my favourite track. Do I go with a previous favourite which also happens to be a released single and more commercial track, Hey Ladies, or do I choose the track that I was unfamiliar with that came through the most. Well seeing as this is a voyage of discovery, its easy to decide. The Sounds Of Science is almost like two songs rolled into one. Firstly starting off slow and funny then rocking into a seriously fast and furious frenzy of tightly packed rhymes. I especially love when all three are rapping together simultaneously, now there's talent. Its got a good bit of scratching and a great guitar riff sample which sounds a bit like The Beatles, can anyone confirm? I think these guys proved themselves to the sceptics with this album and it will remain in the Top 100 for years, if not decades to come.

Shell Hunter's Seal Of Approval

Thursday, 28 August 2014

DYLAN COVERS # 161 Levon Helm - Don't Ya Tell Henry/A Simple Twist of fate


LEVON HELM - Don't Ya Tell Henry (2006)

Here a two great covers by the legend Levon Helm. Both covers are from the excellent series The Midnight Ramble Sessions. The first one Don't Ya Tell Henry is on Vol 2 of this series and A Simple Twist of Fate is on Vol 3.

Both takes are really very good and I particularly like ASTOF, it just brings a smile to my face.
LEVON HELM - A Simple Twist of Fate (2014)

Wednesday, 27 August 2014

Stuart A. Staples - Goodbye to Old Friends



STUART A. STAPLES -  Goodbye to Old Friends (2006)


She held my arm tightly
with both her hands
her face was pale
with a hint of pink on her cheeks
a single tear trickled down
she was usually so strong
always in control
i gently pulled away
she released her grip
i turned around
there was no pleasure
in my control
no pleasure at all
i did not look behind

i kept on walking 
there was no magnetic pull
dragging me back
i was free

free from the prison
 that was her

Tuesday, 26 August 2014

Conor Oberst - Double Life


Do you like Singer/Songwriters/Alt-Country/Americana or Indie-Folk, or do you have a unhealthy affection to the sadness, if so you may have a case of the Tuesday Blues!

Conor Oberst - Double Life (2014)

When I first heard Bright Eyes (Conor Oberst) 2005 album "I'm Wide Awake, It's Morning" I believed I'd found another Dylan. A songwriter who mixed poetry, storytelling and into songs that touched the soul. I was hooked.  With every release I'd religiously purchase his albums and despite being often impressed, I'd be left wanting.  So this year I didn't buy it and instead I let it find me.  So last weekend I thought I'd give it a go and I've been listening to his latest Upside Down Mountain ever since.      

If you are a fan of Men with Beards, like the gentle stroking of a six-string, or just a miserable bugger, Subscribe to our Spotify playlist and read more Tuesday Blues here!  Do you have a musical memory? Send us the Submit a Guest Spot and we'll feature it!

Monday, 25 August 2014

Black Box - 'Fantasy' (1990)


What's your favourite cover version ??? Tell us by clicking here

Black Box - 'Fantasy' (1990)

I had a few crushes on pop stars back in the 90's a few of which I've mentioned in previous posts. This particular one however was a little different from my normal ones. Katrin Quinol was the 'singer' on Black Box's hits such as 'Ride On Time', 'Everybody Everybody' & 'I Don't Know Anybody Else' and whilst I bought the singles and the album 'Dreamland' I hadn't take much notice of her. That was until the video for the 4th single 'Fantasy' was released. As soon as the camera focused on her face I was as smitten as I'd been, she had the most amazingly sexy blue eyes. The image of her brown skin, with these blue eyes did something to me.
The eyes have it...
Nowadays when something like that happens that I can't explain I'd probably get my phone out and Google it. But back in 1990 I just took it for granted that she had blue eyes and that was that. The concept of coloured contact lenses wasn't something that I considered as I didn't know such a thing existed.
I've since discovered that she didn't sing on any of the bands songs and that she was a French-Caribbean model that was paid to be the face of the band and lip-synced all their videos and performances. Like Milli Vanilli it didn't bother me cos I like the songs regardless of who sung them. Albeit I didn't ever fancy the lads from Milli Vanill !!!

I remember the original by 'Earth Wind & Fire' from back in 1978.

NERD ALERT -The actual singer on nearly all of the Black Box songs was an American singer by the name of Martha Wash, who just so happens to be one half of 'The Weather Girls'

And if you wanna subscribe to the Cover Nerd Spotify playlist, please click here

Sunday, 24 August 2014

TRACKS OF THE WEEK 24/08/2014 - Tom The Lion, Jackson Browne, The New Basement Tapes, SBTRKT, Zero 7

Five Tracks to get you warm and dry again

Old Pa's Corner :-
Jackson Browne - The Birds of St Marks (2014)

The song is supposedly written about Nico (Velvet Underground) after a  relationship. Good old Nico did not to o bad in the affairs stakes and the songs written for or about her. Dylan's I'll keep it with Mine is in that category.
JB wrote the song in the sixties and an acoustic version appeared on the album Solo Acoustic Vol 1 (2005). However he always thought the song was taylor made for the Byrds with Roger McGuinn's signature guitar sound. Do you know what?. He was spot on there. Can't wait for the new album out in October. Standing in the Breach (2014)  

Zero 7 - 'Simple Science' (2014)

Zero 7 went off my radar for a long time but I was heavily into their debut album Simple Things for their fantastic ambient trip hop. Seeing their name again on BBC6 recently played list sparked my interest and I'm pleasantly surprised with this latest offering. Although it's a different road altogether from their chill out electronica, I like the fact it makes me want to tap my feet. There's nothing wrong with dabbling in something more up tempo. Simple Science is one of 2 EPs released this year and a full album is due out later this year. Here's to a fresh new wave of Zero 7!

London Scouser:-
The New Basement Tapes - 'Nothing To It' (2014)

A few days ago I was randomly looking at some music websites where one page has a link to another and so on when I came across a page that mentioned a certain Mr B Dylan. Nevertheless I still gave it a read and decided to watch the video. As soon as the song started I thought wow, this is bloody good. It sounded familiar so my first thought was that it was a cover, but reading about it I see that the lyrics were written by Bob Dylan almost 50 years ago and found in a box along with a bunch more. Not being a BD aficionado I am not familiar with his 'Basement Tapes' phase but apparently these newly discovered songs were written at the same time. I still can't figure out what the song reminds me of but I'm happy because it means I get to listen to the song a few more times until I do. I really like the video too, it's a lyric video which are quite the rage nowadays but with a twist... The lyrics used are the actual handwritten ones that Bob wrote way back when.
The New Basement Tapes is a supergroup containing T-Bone Burnett, Jim James (My Morning Jacket), Elvis Costello, Marcus Mumford, Rhiannon Giddens (Carolina Chocolate Drops) & Taylor Goldsmith (Dawes). For more details, check out their website here

SBTRKT - 'New Dorp, New York' (feat Ezra Koenig)

I first heard this and thought "what's all this about?" but then a week or so later I was hooked. Caught up in the simmering minimalist bass and rhythm, synonymous with London's elusive and masked SBTRKT. With Ezra Koenig providing the distinctive vocals, 'New Dorp, New York' is the first single taken from SBTRKT's new album, Wonder When We Land, out in September. I Love the subtle references to my favourite city, particularly the 'Top of The Rock', where I ambushed my now wife and proposed an alliance of love. Gross eh? I never meant it to be akin to the scene in Sleepless in Seattle mind, I wanted to do it at the home of Hip Hop in the Bronx. Word!

Tom The Lion - 'Silent Partner' (2014)

I've been playing this all week and I'm still smitten with it.  It's by Tom The Lion, a Leamington-born indie-folk-pop artist who has recently released his debut album ‘Sleep’ is out now on Wrasse Records.  With more influences to fill a zoo, comparisons such as Snow Patrol's Gary Lightbody, Foals and The Maccabees are probably not too far off the mark, which for me, is a good thing.  Check out the album - he's one to watch!

Listen or even better, subscribe to our tracks of the week playlist here...

Saturday, 23 August 2014

Tom Waits - 'Jockey Full Of Bourbon'

Repeat Prescriptions....The Top 100 Classic Albums Of All Time that you keep coming back to!

Like doing a university course as a mature student, I am returning to my musical education and filling in the gaps. I intend to revisit The 100 Best Albums Of All Time (see them all here) as recommended by Q Magazine back when the poll was last done in 2006. Some I will know and love, some I will have skimmed and some I will not even have given time of day. This will all change when I listen to every album in full as it was intended, from 100 to 1, and choose my favourite song from each.

Album Number 99: Tom Waits - Rain Dogs - Jockey Full Of Bourbon (1985)

I have to admit I was dubious about listening to Tom Waits. It's all Old Pa's fault really, I was traumatised at a young age with the wailing and painful to listen to, Waltzing Matilda. Basically it is because of those memories that I wrote off Tom Waits completely. This is where I really appreciate this project. Having to play something I would never otherwise bother with, already happy with the opinion I set at probably aged 10, means I have to listen to it objectively and make an educated opinion. I compare it to saying you don't like mushrooms when you are a kid and find out you actually love them as an adult. Okay, maybe its going a bit too far to say I love Tom Waits, but I will certainly listen to more. What I do love about him is his talent for imagery and story telling. If he sticks to his raspy, whispery prose and leaves the wailing slow ballads behind, he has a fan in Shell Hunter for sure.

When I first put on Rain Dogs, I laughed out loud. Was this guy for real? Who bought this sort of weird music? I warmed to it quickly though as it took me far away to the back streets of New Orleans, into smokey dimly lit bars with sordid characters at every turn. The track 9th & Hennepin is the perfect example and I would have chosen this as my favourite but didn't fully consider it an actual song. Its like film noir or even like one of my favourite films Sin City with its narration and descriptions.

Jockey Full Of Bourbon was a clear highlight early on as it ticked lots of boxes for me. It showcases Tom in the way I think he is best, no wailing here! It may not sound like a circus like some of the random songs on the album but it's got a great gritty feel to it. Add to that a Calexico sounding guitar riff and I could be in the streets of Havana or Mexico City!

Shell Hunter's Seal Of Approval

Friday, 22 August 2014

DYLAN COVERS # 160 Harry Belafonte - Forever Young/Tomorrow is a Long Time

There's a hole in my record dear Odetta!

HARRY BELAFONE - Forever Young (1981)

Haryy Belafonte was quite importamt in the early career of Dylan. Dylan played harmonica on a take of Midnight Special. It was to be his first recording in the studio. The year was 1961. (please correct me if I am wrong).  See below.

The two covers are not great but again they are not too unpleasant either. The first track Forever Young is on the 1981 album Loving You is where I Belong.The second one, Tomorrow is a Long Tine can be found on the album Homeward Bound (1969)

HARRY BELAFONE - Tomorrow is a Long Time (1969)

As an added bonus I have included the HB track that includes Dylan's first ever studio recording of him playing the harp.

HARRY BELAFONTE - Midnight Special Take 1 Featuring Bob Dylan (1961)

Wednesday, 20 August 2014

Jesus and Mary Chain - Darklands/Morrissey - Suedehead



The White Nile meets the Blue Nile

MORRISSEY - Suedehead (1988)

I think it was about the third day I was there when there appeared to be a bit of a commotion outside of the work office which faced the main runway at Khartoum Airport. I joined everyone heading outside. There was a convoy of limousines heading in our direction. When they eventually passed I could see very clearly, only a few metres away Colonel Gaddafi in full uniform, He was on a state visit to the Sudan. 

It was the Friday, my last day and as we finished early Ali said he would show me around after work.  He took me on a tour of Khartoum. We passed the place where the Blue Nile met the White Nile. Now that that was an impressive sight.

He drove quite a way and eventually we were in the dessert, he continued to drive what seemed like a very long time. In the distance I could see what could only be described as a crude stadium. We entered and I believe I was the only European there. I clutched my little bag which contained my passport and other important documents. I dared not leave anything in my hotel room.

Tribal Wrestling
What was happening was a wrestling match between two local tribes. Every now and again two guys met in the middle of the stadium and the noise levels rose as the two guys continued to fight. I did not really understand what was happening and this continued for over an hour. Suddenly out of the blue rifles appeared and were pointed into the air and all fired at once . The sound was deafening. Ali informed me that one of the tribes had won the contest. It certainly was an exciting experience and one I will never forget.

On the way back Ali showed me the Hilton Hotel where all my colleagues who previously visited Khartoum stayed. It was $100 per night and there was a nice view of the Nile and I am sure the doors of the rooms had locks.

The whole trip had cost me $5 dollars, I tried to give Ali $50 for the whiskey and all the help he gave me but he would not take a cent. Top man was Ali.

When I returned to Jeddah I went Immediately and bought a new separates Kenwood stereo System and matching cabinet with the money I had saved. It was worth the sacrifice and what the hell it was a great experience.
THE JESUS AND MARY CHAIN - Darklands (1988)

Tuesday, 19 August 2014

S.Carey - Fire-scene


Do you like Singer/Songwriters/Alt-Country/Americana or Indie-Folk, or do you have a unhealthy affection to the sadness, if so you may have a case of the Tuesday Blues!

The talented Mr Carey
S.Carey - Fire-scene(2014)

Sean Carey, Justin Vernon's Bon Iver drummer, pianist, and backing vocalist always seems to make music that has a certain grandeur about it. Like Bon Iver he has the ability to take you on a sonic adventure that could easily become a soundtrack to your day.  The video for Fire-scene takes this a step further with stunning visuals which accompanies the track perfectly.  Give it a spin and it may appreciate the beauty and wonder around you - it did for me.  

Fire-scene features on S.Carey's LP Range of Light that was released in April on Jagjaguwar

If you are a fan of Men with Beards, like the gentle stroking of a six-string, or just a miserable bugger, Subscribe to our Spotify playlist and read more Tuesday Blues here!  Do you have a musical memory? Send us the Submit a Guest Spot and we'll feature it!

Sunday, 17 August 2014

TRACKS OF THE WEEK 17/08/2014 - Courteeners, Alt-J, Ryan Adams, Congo Ashanti Roy and Pura Vida, Kiesza

Kiesza - 'Hideaway' (2014)

Warning! Do not listen if you are an old fart! That's pretty much what I was thinking when some young pup put on KissFm on in the office. I like a bit of dance music but some of the stuff that gets the kids wild in clubs is beyond me. Saying that, every now and again a song creeps up and hits me. This track did exactly that and I was happy to say so in the office much to the surprise of my colleagues who I fight with to put on BBC6. Kiesza is a multi talented, Canadian dancer/musician who mainly dabbles in dance, house and electro. I later found out it went in straight at number 1 in the charts back in April, no mean feat in this manufactured pop idol age. It also makes me feel kind of smug that of all the songs that hit me, it was a chart topper!

London Scouser:-
Courteeners - 'How Good It Was' (2014)

Finally after what seems like an eternity it's back. The Premier League I mean, and before you ask me what has that got to do with music I'll tell you. Every week on the BBC website, former mustachioed legend Mark Lawrenson predicts the scores of this weeks games and pits his skills against a celeb. This week he is up against Liam, lead singer of Courteeners. As mentioned in a previous post I've been a fan for a while and am pleased to see they have a new album out on August 18th called 'Concrete Love'. This song is bang on form for them and I predict a win for them although they might have to settle for a mid-table finish.

Alt-J - 'Left Hand Free' (2014)

Triangles were top of the pops as my favourite shape for most of 2012 when Alt-J released their debut, An Awesome Wave. They have recently released three quick fire tracks in anticipation of their imminent 2nd album, This Is All Yours, the haunting 'Hunger of the Pine', 'Every Other Freckle' and the official single 'Left Hand Free'. The single is pretty unusual as it doesn't really sound like any of Alt-J's previous stuff (sounds a bit like The Bees to me) nevertheless despite the video looking like a phone ad, it's pretty catchy and had me humming it after a few listens. It may have apparently taken them only 20 minutes to write the song but it also suggests that they have their fingers firmly in different musical pies. So far so good for the difficult second album.

Ryan Adams - My Wrecking Ball (2014)

I am excited.  In fact I am frothing at the lips in anticipation of Mr Adams' album release next month.  My Wrecking Ball is more like classic RA.  A catchy hook littered with sadness all rolled up in X. In recent interviews he said that he scrapped an entire album that he recorded with Glyn Johns because it was "to sad".  Don't worry though, you can see here that he still has his dry sense of humour.

Old Pa's Corner :-
Congo Ashanti Roy and Pura Vida - 'Manuel Club' (2014)

This is the new album by Congo Ashanti Roy and Pura Vida and is called Step by Step (2014) and I just love it and I just can't stop playing it. It took me some time just to pass the first 2 tracks and it was a hard choice to choose from those. This is great old school reggae and must be about the best of the gendre around at the moment. Excellent stuff and a must hear.

Pura Vida are a Belgium reggae band and have teamed up with the legend that is Congo Ashanti Roy (Roydell Johnson)  of the fabulous Congos.

Listen or even better, subscribe to our tracks of the week playlist here...

Saturday, 16 August 2014

Wilco - 'I'm Trying To Break Your Heart'

Repeat Prescriptions....The Top 100 Classic Albums Of All Time that you keep coming back to!

Like doing a university course as a mature student, I am returning to my musical education and filling in the gaps. I intend to revisit The 100 Best Albums Of All Time (see them all here) as recommended by Q Magazine back when the poll was last done in 2006. Some I will know and love, some I will have skimmed and some I will not even have given time of day. This will all change when I listen to every album in full as it was intended, from 100 to 1, and choose my favourite song from each.

Album Number 100: Wilco - Yankee Hotel Foxtrot - I Am Trying To Break Your Heart (2001)

I know of Wilco and I know I know some of their stuff, but when I tried to think of a song or album, oops, I couldn't! So the journey to reinforce my musical foundations has officially begun. It was a gloriously sunny day and myself and LS had just set off for home from Bognor Regis having just visited the mother in law. The start of the journey is through rolling hills and farmland which had fresh bails of hay everywhere. This album couldn't have been more perfect for the scenery and now won't be forgotten. In a nutshell I enjoyed it from the off and actually listened to it several times over the week (I only set myself the task of listening to it twice but it was that good). In my opinion, it has the right balance of folk, pop and electric sound with too many highlights to mention without fear of leaving a song off the album out! 

Although I did try to pick a favourite that wasn't the first track on the album, (don't know why, just felt like a cop out!) I couldn't deny that I enjoy it the most. It reminds me of Beck or Badly Drawn Boy. I just love the rattly bamboo clicks and echoey piano, perfect sunny day music despite the break up sentiment. It's great when the last lines of the song are the guy admitting he is 'the man that loves you'. I shall now be watching the Wilco documentary of the same name!

Shell Hunter's seal of approval.

Friday, 15 August 2014

DYLAN COVERS # 159 The Train Wrecks/Dos Hermanos - Jet Pilot

The Train Wrecks or the new Bombadiers

DOS HERMANOS - Jet Pilot (2011)

Here a two completely different takes of Jet Pilot by two new bands to me. The first is by Dos Hermanos, apparently they come from Denver (correct me if I am wrong) and do a pretty good version. I like this. It can be found on their album 1,2,3 (2011).

Second up is The Train Wrecks which sound as if they should be a Punk Band, but in fact are more Alt Country influenced. It is on their album Whiskey and War (2007).

I like like both these versions.
THE TRAIN WRECKS - Jet Pilot (2007)

Tuesday, 12 August 2014

Brian Wilson - Love and Mercy/Neneh Cherry - Buffalo Stance



BRIAN WILSON - Love and Mercy (1988)

I was sent over to the Sudan to support the Cargo Section for Saudia Airlines  cut over to an Automated Cargo System.

I had asked the local guys to find me a cheap Hotel as I hoped to make some money out of the trip as I needed a new stereo System. I knew there would be not a lot to do as it was now a strict Muslim country and they had public floggings for the terrible sin of drinking alcohol. It was 1988.

I was a bit surprised landing in Khartoum at how dark it was compared to landing in Jeddah where it looked like a fourth of July fire work display.

I was picked up by Ali and taken to a Hotel or what looked like a Hotel. It looked very run down and all I remember seeing was the white of eyes of several tall black men giving me the stare. I was ushered to a room and Ali said he would pick me up first thing the next morning and then he was gone. The room was basic there was no lock on the door. I went to what was supposed to be the bathroom and again there was no lock. There was running water, just. It wasn't very clean.

I thought what have I let myself in for here. I wanted cheap. But this. This was down right scary. I did not even have any local Currency. It was pretty late so I tried to get some sleep and I would sort it out tomorrow. I was experiencing the aptly named African Hotel.

I told Ali the next day that really this was not suitable and I wanted something a bit better. He would not hear of it. After all it was his brother's Hotel and he would arrange the best room. He had arranged a good price of $5 US dollars for the weeks. At that price I would suffer it and get that great looking Kenwood stereo I had been after for some time. I had my trusty portable cassette player (all the tracks played on this and the next post featured on this cassette play list I had made especially for the trip) . I was stacked up with Pot noodles, chocolate and nuts. During the day I ate at the Airport Canteen.

The new room was slightly better, there was no window just a shutter tied with wire and it looked on to a small court yard. Locking doors in this Hotel just did not exist. Think Kenwood was the order of the day.

Ali dropped me of the next night and ask do I like a drink. I answered well I have been know to have a little tipple.He said he would pick me up later and we will look for some alcohol.

He came back later and quickly handed me a brown bag and said he would pick me up tomorrow at the same time. In the bag was a bottle of Johnny Walker Scotch. I drank the bottle that night and had some pot noodles and a great music session. I was worried however what to do with the empty bottle and had visions of an International incident and a public flogging.

Part 2 next week
NENEH CHERRY - Buffalo Stance (1988)

Sivu - Particles


Do you like Singer/Songwriters/Alt-Country/Americana or Indie-Folk, or do you have a unhealthy affection to the sadness, if so you may have a case of the Tuesday Blues!

"Sivu" Finnish for "Page"

Sivu - Particles (2014)
London-based singer/songwriter James Page, a.ka. Sivu, has recently released Particles which features on the Miracle (Human Error) EP.   I love the warmth of the acoustic guitar, the repetitive guitar hook and a vocal melody that builds and then just resolves.  It's simplicity is its brilliance!

If you want to find out more check out last years 'Better Man Than He' (which featured him being filmed inside a MRI scanner!) and 'I Hold' which featured him and Marika Hackman

If you are a fan of Men with Beards, like the gentle stroking of a six-string, or just a miserable bugger, Subscribe to our Spotify playlist and read more Tuesday Blues here!  Do you have a musical memory? Send us the Submit a Guest Spot and we'll feature it!

Sunday, 10 August 2014

TRACKS OF THE WEEK 10/08/2014 - Reigning Sound, Emma Ruth Rundle, Hollie Cook, Common, Dry The River

Five tracks to help kick off the new season...

London Scouser:-
Dry The River - ' Everlasting Light' (2014)

I can't believe it's been more than two years since Shellhunter first introduced me to Dry The River with 'The Chambers & The Valves' which was one of my songs of 2012. They're back with this single from their upcoming 2nd album 'Alarms In The Heart' which is released on August 25th. This song is a little rockier than their old stuff and I don't disapprove in the slightest. The video is a good watch as the band members get seven shades of $#1t knocked out of them by some mean looking ladies on the judo mat !!!

Common - 'Speak My Piece' (2014)

I'm currently up t'north visiting the Lakes and Blackpool. Why? Because it's my wife's hood. But despite 10 days of rolling hills, beaches and tranquility, I can never fully rid myself of the airport, where I work. Thanks to this track from Common's 10th album, Nobody's Smiling, out last month. With it's simple 808 style old school beat, it's the stand out track but it's the chorus and the end of the track that reminds me of distorted ground to air radio chatter. Sounds cool but alas there's no escaping it, even in Wainwright's country.

Emma Ruth Rundle - 'Arms I Know So Well' (2014)

Emma Ruth Rundle is a busy lass.  She fronts LA's The Marriages, The Nocturnes and plays in instrumental Post-Rock band called Red Sparrows.  Additional to this she has recently released her first solo album called Some Heavy Ocean.  Atmospheric folk mixed with gorgeous sadness, the album features some spectacular tracks such as Arms I Know So Well.  Grandeur with Reverb!

Old Pa's Corner :-
Reigning Sound - 'Never Coming Home' (2014)

I have not heard much of these guys and can not understand why. This track from their album Album Shattered (2014) is a real cracker and is another of those that creep up on you and you will be humming it before you know it.

It is a great album full of great little love songs. Good quality stuff all round and worth a listen. 

Hollie Cook - 'Postman' (2014)

On two separate occasions this song has got my attention and I had to find out what it was, the same song! Why haven't I heard of her before? Born into music, Hollie's father is Paul Cook (drummer for the Sex Pistols) and her mother is Jeni who was backing singer for Culture Club. Boy George is even her God Father. Well I know having musical relations doesn't necessarily mean you will automatically be an amazing musician but on this occasion I think the influences have created more than interesting results. Hollie, who is also in the reformed band The Slits, released her debut album in 2011 which I don't know how I missed. If this great reggae track complete with steel drums is anything to go by, I shall be revisiting her back catalogue which includes a Dub version of her debut. Easy no'!

Listen or even better, subscribe to our tracks of the week playlist here...

Thursday, 7 August 2014

DYLAN COVERS # 158 Dave Alvin/X - Highway 61 Revisited

Dave had the X Factor

  X - Highway 61 Revisited (1987)

Here is a couple of interesting takes of Highway 61 Revisited which Dave Alvin is involved in. Dave became briefly part of the Group X and they released an album called See How We Are (1987). There is a Demo version of Highway 61  included on the deluxe version of the album.

Dave also recorded a different fantastic version for the Uncut Dylan Covers CD of  the Highway 61 Revisited album. This is an excellent CD and is worth hearing, There are some great stuff on that one.

Check out Dave's latest CD along with his brother Phil. It is pretty good, I featured a track on our Tracks of the Week. Check it out here.

DAVE ALVIN - Highway 61 Revisited

Wednesday, 6 August 2014

Jackson Browne - Sing My Songs To Me/ For Everyman


To Enjoy! is to Vomit!

JACKSON BROWNE - Sing My Songs To Me/For Everyman

To Purr with Pleasure...the music sounds so good you almost feel sick 'Pleasure Vomit' I call it!

I just heard these two songs and it remided me how good Jackson Browne was and how much I just loved him back then and still do of course. When Sing My Song breaks at about 2:30 untill it breaks into For Everyman a minute later, is just pure 'Pleasure Vomit'. Listen for the the drum roll!. You have full permisssion to replay as many times as you wish. In my opinon, it is one of the highlights in rock music full stop!.

Now the big question is? do you have some 'Pleasure Vomit' moments....I will help you with some others I can think of, the ending of  Dylan's Sad Eyed Lady of the Lowlands from Blonde on Blonde or even the ending of Dire Straits live take on Alchemy of Tunnel Of Love.

They all leave me breathless and wiping my shirt!.

Tuesday, 5 August 2014

Samantha Crain - For The Miner


Do you like Singer/Songwriters/Alt-Country/Americana or Indie-Folk, or do you have a unhealthy affection to the sadness, if so you may have a case of the Tuesday Blues!

Samantha Crain - For The Miner (2014)
I find this track so infectious at the moment.  For some reason I keep on thinking of U2's One, it's probably the vocal melody, I haven't tried it out, but maybe there's some chords that lead to Bono's boys.

For The Miner features on Samantha Crain's 2013 debut album Kid Face which was produced by The Mountain Goats, John Vanderslice.  An Oklahoman of Choctaw heritage she often gets mistaken for a 16 year old, hence the title of her first album. With influences include Neil Young to Woody Guthrie to the Flaming Lips she's an artist that has got me all excited.

You can download a free version of For The Miner, from her website here

If you are a fan of Men with Beards, like the gentle stroking of a six-string, or just a miserable bugger, Subscribe to our Spotify playlist and read more Tuesday Blues here!  Do you have a musical memory? Send us the Submit a Guest Spot and we'll feature it!

Monday, 4 August 2014

Weezer - 'Buddy Holly' & Edie Brickell - 'Good Times'

Musical Medicine..... tracks that give you a 'Ctrl-Alt-Delete' to your memories

My mum came home from work one day in the 90's and gave me a PC that she had bought at work. Her company we're updating their systems and she got it for £20 !! "Great" I thought, I would have my very own computer, and I could now create my own 'Weird Science' hottie... In truth though it was about as powerful as a bottle of coke that had been left open for a week. But I was optimistic, and decided to pay a visit to PC World to upgrade it. I bought a CD ROM and soundcard package and some RAM memory which set me back a little over £500 !!. But hey I had the cash so why not, in hindsight I could probably have paid a little extra and bought a new PC but there you go. As part of the package I was also given a copy of Windows 95 which at the time was the dogs doodahs compared to DOS. Once I had installed everything I loaded Windows and was amazed at the difference. Plus it had video playback capabilities, the like of which I'd never seen and included on the disc were 2 videos for 2 great songs. Thinking back now the quality of the videos were awful but I'll never forget watching them over and over.

Weezer - 'Buddy Holly' (1994)

Having grown up in the 70's and 80's I was a big fan of 'Happy Days' so I absolutely loved the 'Buddy Holly' video which was set in Arnold's Diner. I'd bought 'Shooting Rubber Bands At The Stars' by Edie Brickell & The New Bohemians so was pleased when I heard the new track, and the fact that Barry White featured on vocals made it even better...

Edie Brickell - 'Good Times' (1994)

Sunday, 3 August 2014

TRACKS OF THE WEEK 03-08-2014 - Jeff Tweedy, Bahamas, Weezer, Rag 'N' Bone Man

Four tracks more exciting than the Commonwealth Games!

Rag 'N' Bone Man - 'Put That Soul On Me' (2014)

I've been recovering from the fall out of Latitude and catching up on artists that I missed. You're never going to be able to see everything and your constantly having to make a Sophie's Choice of sorts, Rag 'N' Bone man was one of them. With a fantastic soul voice, the Brighton based Bluesman has his roots firmly in Hip Hop as is evident from this track and a few others in his back catalogue I've been catching up on recently (Dog 'N' Bone and Bluestown EPs). 'Put That Soul On Me' (produced by Dirty Dike), with it's sweet little piano loop is taken from one of two EP's released last month, Put That Soul On Me and Wolves, perfect if you're in need for laid back bluesy Hip Hop. Rag 'N' Bone man is probably one collaboration away from stardom and is arguably the best act we never saw at Latitude.

Download Wolves for free at Mr Rag 'N' Bone Man's Bandcamp page here.

Bahamas - All The Time (2014)

Afie Jurvanen, a.k.a. Bahamas, is back with his first release for two years with the effortless laid-back-indie-pop-soul (or whatever you want to call it!) "All This Time". He first caught my attention with the excellent lost in the light which featured on 2012's Barchords, of which this follows a similar mould.
It features on Bahamas' upcoming 12-song LP, Bahamas is Afie, which arrives August 19 on Jack Johnsons Brushfire Records.

Old Pa's Corner :-
Jeff Tweedy - Summer Noon (2014)


Classic Jeff Tweedy from his new album Sukierae (2014) out in September. This could be lifted of any of the the great Wilco albums it is just perfect.

London Scouser:-
Weezer - 'Back To The Shack' (2014)

It's been a few years since I've heard anything by Weezer and they're back on form. They tick all the boxes for me with great riffage and a catchy tune. My favourite lyrics are "let's turn up the radio, turn off those stupid singing shows"... Amen to that !!! This was released on the 23rd July and is the lead off single to their 9th album 'Everything Will Be Alright In The End' which is out on September 30th.

Listen or even better, subscribe to our tracks of the week playlist here...

Friday, 1 August 2014

DYLAN COVERS # 157 First Aid Kit - One More Cup of Coffee x 2


FIRST AID KIT - One More Cup of Coffee
Before we put away all our Posts about the Latitude Festival I will have to include the only Dylan Cover I actually heard from all the artist I experienced over the three days. It is a pretty good rendition from the fabulous First Aid Kit of One More Cup of Coffee. There are a few version up on You Tube by the group and I have included two takes for your edification.
If anybody out there heard any more Dylan Covers at Latitude 2014 kindly let me know.
FIRST AID KIT - One More Cup of Coffee