Sunday, 29 April 2012

Nina Simone - For all we know

Phil writes: A distinctive and stunning version of a much-covered song:

Friday, 27 April 2012

just found out that Chris Ethridge from The Flying Burrito Brothers died earlier this week

Joe writes: He co-wrote my favourite Burritos song, Hot Burrito #1, as covered by Elvis Costello under the title I'm Your Toy

Wednesday, 25 April 2012

The Robbie Boyd Band - I won't let you go

Phil writes: Graham Norton played this on Radio 2 and I thought it must be a new Mumford song. It's a very good song, performed well:

Tuesday, 24 April 2012

Lou Doillon - I.C.U.

Joe writes: I don't know much about this, but from what I can work out it's the debut release by a new French artist. It's a proper song that manages to avoid sounding old-fashioned or schmaltzy. Very classy.

Saturday, 21 April 2012

R.I.P. Levon Helm

Phil writes: Another member of the legendary band follows Richard Manuel and Rick Danko offstage. One of the extraordinary things about the Band was the sheer excellence of every member. None of them was really ever the same after the surely premature decision to dis-Band, though the reformed band (minus Robbie Robertson) of the nineties was very good by any standard and I reckon they made better albums than RR.

Here's Levon Helm at Woodstock singing possibly the best Band song (and in his view, and the view of other members of the Band, like much of their material, this was a co-operative writing effort  -  like the vocals  - though, as so often, Robertson managed to get the credit).

Abba - The Visitors

Joe writes: Abba's final studio album The Visitors is reissued on Monday. Conceptually this is my favourite Abba album, being released in the year that Anni-Fred and Benny divorced (Björn had already split two years earlier). I must say, listening again, it's not the most consistent album but it does contain two classic songs of heartbreak, One Of Us and The Day Before You Came.

The Day Before You Came:

Listening again now, I'm sure this must have been the inspiration for one of my favourite Pulp songs,  Something Changed:

And here's One Of Us:

Monday, 16 April 2012

Jessie Ware - 110%

Joe writes: The new Jessie Ware tune is even better than the last one. A few people have tried to fill this niche recently but Jessie seems to be doing it right.

Monday, 9 April 2012

And a Bang* on the Ear - The Waterboys

Phil writes: Mike Scott of the Waterboys has tweeted a link to a review of his latest concert where he apparently dedicated this song to the original Lindsay mentioned in the song who was present at the concert. Great opportunity to post this rollicking song.

*A 'bang' is a kiss.

Grown Up by Danny Brown

Joe writes: Nice hip hop tune. Who does his delivery remind me of?

Sunday, 8 April 2012

Everyone gets to sing with Emmylou eventually

Phil writes: The Band are no exception though this footage had to be slotted into the movie and is not of an actual performance from the concert.

Wednesday, 4 April 2012

CSYN - Our House

Phil writes: Our House by Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young is on some advert at the moment. Happy to say I can't remember what it's advertising - apart from this great song from an almost great band.

Plan B - Ill Manors

Joe writes: I guess this barnstorming single takes Plan B into the territory once occupied by The King Blues:

Ill Manors borrows its backing track from this German hip hop track Alles Neu by Peter Fox, which in turn samples Dimitri Shostakovich's Seventh Symphony.

yesterday The King Blues announced that they are splitting up

Joe writes: I worked with them on the album Save The World, Get The Girl which is full of great tunes and lyrics*. Here's one of its lesser known songs, The Schemers, the Scroungers and the Rats:

And here's the poem Zane Lowe played last night to mark their departure, What If Punk Never Happened:

I will always remember the first time I heard an entire crowd shout along with the words "Viva la punk, just one life, anarchy", and the last time, when they were headlining the Roundhouse in their spiritual home of Camden a few months back.

Zane played their demo a couple of times, but didn't play them again until the guy behind the counter in his local organic greengrocer said to him "Why don't you play The King Blues instead of all that rubbish you do play?". They were a people's band.

* Footnote - after George Galloway won a by-election last week I wrote on Twitter that one of my favourite King Blues lyrics is "A peace movement needs fire in its belly, but Galloway's lapping up milk on the telly" (which he did as a contestant on Celebrity Big Brother). Someone then tweeted me asking what song this is from - good question. I think it was from an early version of Save The World, Get The Girl, and they changed it before the album came out because it was no longer topical. They may have done this at my suggestion and I wonder now if it was a mistake.