Earworms of the Week
“Comfortably Numb” – Pink Floyd
I’m one of those people who is resolutely unexcited by the prospect of a new Pink Floyd album. That does not, however, mean that I’m not interested in Pink Floyd. I can’t remember the last time that I sat and listened to “The Wall” all of the way though, but I’m sure I’m hardly alone in finding it something of a slog. This popped on a playlist I was listening to the other day, and it’s an understated masterpiece. But of course, everyone in the world already knows that. As an occasional listener though, it’s good to be reminded of the fact from time-to-time, especially when you’ve been listening to a lot of metal….and that guitar solo is a delight.
“Fire” – The Crazy World of Arthur Brown
I think I honestly would like this song played as the curtains draw in the crematorium and my mortal remains are turned to ash (I’d like to be dead before this process starts, ideally… so not like James Bond in Diamonds are Forever. No gay hit men either)
“Thank you Jesus, thank you Lord” – unknown
So, the lead developer on our project is a delightful Indian man. I like him, but I can honestly only understand about one word in four. Still, when he has this as his ringtone, an unbelievably cheesy sounding rendition of some devotional song or other, how could you not love him? Great 'tache too.
“Rattlesnakes” – Lloyd Cole
Shuffle is sometimes brilliant. Not so much when it coughs up something from one of the dustier corners of my 160gB iPod classic – frankly I daren’t listen to the “all songs” playlist on that unsupervised – but on a carefully chosen playlist, it can sometimes come up trumps…. As it did when I was a little over a mile into an evening run and just at the top of a long hill in the rain. [obligatory mention of the Tori Amos cover]
“The Next Jet to Leave Moscow” – Manic Street Preachers
An old jaded commie walking in Red Square
With rediffusion eyes of yesteryear
I’m the biggest living hypocrite you’ll ever see
‘cos the market never lies and your conscience is so clear
So take your badges off
And do your show
Then catch the next flight to leave Moscow
So you played in Cuba did you like it brother?
I bet you felt proud you silly little fucker
And all the sixties dreamers called us English
Said we started something that they could finish
They might deny that "Take Me To The Bridge" is autobiographical, but this one seems seems fairly straight-forwardly about themselves, doesn't it? "Futurology" is a superb album. Superb. So many years down the line and they honestly seem to be getting better and better.
“Beat on the Brat” – The Ramones
I tried to explain to a colleague at work today how I wanted to buy a spoof Ramones t-shirt. Something like this. Sadly, this led to an explanation of what an actual Ramones t-shirt looked like, followed by an explanation of who the Ramones were, followed by a quick sing of "Rockaway Beach", "Sheena is a Punk Rocker" and "Beat on the Brat". She was none the wiser, but I felt a lot better.
“Beautiful Day” – U2
“Space Oddity” – David Bowie
Bono hasn't had the best of weeks, what with having to apologise for inflicting their new album on a billion people free of charge.... but he'll be gratified to learn that, at some point this week, one of his more memorable songs found it's way into my head. I'm a bit ambivalent about his band, which is a step up from about a decade of positively loathing them, but I do like this one. Their set at Glastonbury in 2011 resolutely failed to take off (with Bono wearing a fat person's leather suit), but they did have a "live" link-up to the International Space Station, which isn't really something most other bands are able to do. The commander there actually recited one of the verses to this song, and it was actually really very impressive. Certainly not something that you see every day, anyway. Thinking of a link up to the International Space Station obviously then took my head to David Bowie. That's a better song, isn't it? Nothing against U2, but I think they'd probably be the first to agree.
“Getting Away With It” – James
“Curse Curse” - James
James must be one of the most successful bands to be overlooked. They've sold a lot of records over the years, but steadfastly seem to have refused to be as big as perhaps they might. Their new album, "La Petit Morte" is excellent throughout, and "Curse Curse" draws the unlikely comparison between two people making love in the hotel room next door and Lionel Messi scoring for Barcelona and sending 100,000 men into ecstasy. Singer Tim Booth lost his mother and one of his closest friends in the making of the album, so it's shot through with themes of mortality. Still, it's slightly disappointing to read lazy music reviewers literally translating the album title as "the little death" and failing to see the play on words that might see that translated as the french expression for orgasm.. which is a lot more playful and makes a lot of sense when you listen to this song. James seem to have been on something of a publicity drive for their new album, playing at the Rugby League Grand Final and other unlikely venues. I watched their performance at the BBC Maida Vale studios for 6Music, and as well as playing a couple of new songs, they also played a couple of classics, including "Getting Away With It", a song that's relatively recent but had for some reason had more or less escaped my memory. I actually saw them playing to a half-empty Rock City on the tour for "Pleased to Meet You". So soon after their massive selling Greatest Hits, and the moment already looked to have disappeared. No matter. They're a good, interesting band, and it's great that they're still producing such fantastic music.
Right - that's your lot. Have a good weekend y'all and see you on the other side.
Oh... did I mention: I've got a new job?
Reading to escape
5 days ago