I’m enjoying this a lot. Very intrigued to find out where they go next with the new album. Will it all be in German? Have they dropped the soundtrack vocals for good? And this video must be a nod to True Faith.
What does it sound like?:
Teenage Fanclub! The signs weren’t brilliant. Obviously the great Gerry Love (author of too many of their great songs to count) left the band in 2018. And then none of the singles were particularly spectacular as singles. There was also a lot of chatter on the ****book fan page about how it was all a bit meh and not Bandwagonesque etc. So for the first time I didn’t listen to a Fannies album on the first day of release (also physical copies were held up in customs so I couldn’t get the vinly initially, but let’s not get into Brexit issues here…)
BUT. I’ve now done a good deal more than 6 listens, and well, it’s a good ‘un, definitely a grower, and possibly my favourite of theirs this century. Will it change the world? No, it’s a Teenage Fanclub album. Will it convert anyone? Also probably nope. But anyone already signed up to the Fanclub must surely find something to love here.
It’s the sound of a bunch of middle aged blokes ageing gracefully, if not always happily, and continuing to plough their own furrow and evolve.
Norman Blake has clearly had » Continue Reading.
I come not to criticize but more likely just say, really?
Neil Young was my first classic rock discovery, before Dylan, before the Beatles and the Stones, with Ragged Glory and Weld, when he was the Godfather of Grunge, and younger than I am now… So I quickly went out and bought everything that went earlier, and there was a lot, even trawling for bootlegs of stuff that hadn’t been rereleased at the time like On the Beach, Hawks and Doves, Time Fades Away. Also led me to CSN/Y and even Stills/Young. And lots of live albums. Most of it was brilliant, though not all of it.
And from that 91 moment of discovery I also bought forward, all the way through to Living With War. At that point came the realisation that I hadn’t much liked a single one of Silver and Gold, Are you Passionate, Greendale, Prairie Wind or Living with Wat. One listeners one and all.
I had a brief revival with Psychedelic Pill which seemed to recreate that godfather of grunge thing, but 27 mins is too long for any song for repeat listening, so the revival didn’t last.
Just looked in Spotify. There appear to » Continue Reading.
So I’ve got to admit the last year has been a bit shit. Not as shit as for many, of course. I’m still here, (relatively) healthy, not lost anyone close (though not seen a family member for 15 months), still working, just about, and for now. But a year plus of living alone during the pandemic has been less than ideal, battling addictions, loneliness, insomnia and more has been less than fun (and best not mention potential effects of Brexit on a remainer expat, or are they all related…)?.
But the point of the post is not to be negative. I’ve found a lot of comfort in instrumental music. Here are four examples of instrumentals I discovered over the last 12 months that have helped a lot. Very different genres, but all provide their bit of comfort. Fancy adding to the list? I could do with more of this kind of thing and I don’t know a better place to ask. I suspect a decent Spotify playlist could emerge.
Over a decade ago I had a very enjoyable delve into music that wasn’t British, American, or, at a push French or German. So basically what used to be called World music (possibly still is), though in my case mostly from Africa. Was inspired by temporary boredom of yer rock and pop and the pressing need to download 90 emusic songs a month while faced with a seemingly endless wall of faceless indie bands. It was a lot of fun.
Sadly, the ipod long since died, as did the computer, and the back-up CDs could only now be useful if I invested in some new technology (if clouds existed then, I didn’t know it…) So basically I have no real trace of any of it.
Things I remember: the Ethiopiques series was amazing, but only the name Mulatu Astatke has stuck; Orchestra Baobab; Fela Kuti; there were also some brilliant compilations of 70s Nigerian funk. There was lots and lots more. The Congo, Ethiopia and Nigeria were what stuck most of all I think but don’t want to just stay there.
So, I’m now on hols. But hols in 2020 will be different: basically exactly the same as the last » Continue Reading.
Back in the olden days there were three podcasts: the Word (yes I even continued my subscription to the mag to get the full version), Adam and Joe on 6 Music (my favourite non-music listening ever), Kermode and Mayo: so two were basically edited down radio shows. All are still going in some form and two I still listen to (clue, K&M somewhere along the way went smug). I wished that there were more around (I re-listened to Word and A&J a lot) – this was great: interesting, funny radio on demand on my ipod, stuff that interested me, perfect for cooking/walking to.
Now, blimey. The list of podcasts I’m subscribed to on Spotify is getting silly, most of them I haven’t listened to all episodes, many of them I’ve not even started but look interesting. Many of them have vast back catalogues to explore.
Word in your ear, Adam Buxton, Bigmouth, Rock’s Back Pages (the most properly-spoken podcast of all which might irritate some but with its knowledge, erudition and enthusiasm for music plus interesting guests is the closest I’ve found to old Word), Rivals, Is it Rolling, Bob?, Nothing is Real, Album Years, Hit Parade, Chart Music » Continue Reading.