Earworms of the Week
“Many of Horror” – Biffy Clyro
I heard a cover version of this being used as a bedding track for something being trailed on the telly. It wasn’t a great cover, but it is a great song and it put me in mind of both the original version and the film “The Descendants”, where it is put to very good use.
“Creeping Death” - Metallica
“Jesus Walks” – Kanye West
I’ve already written about this, but both tracks are playing in my head in irritation at the utterly predictable and pointless furore about the announcement of Kanye West as the Saturday headliner at Glastonbury this year. It turns out that the guy running the petition that now has over 60,000 signatures is going to the festival for the very first time this year… so quite how he feels qualified to say what is and is not acceptable is somewhat beyond me. Well, he’s seen it on the telly, hasn’t he? An added bonus with the Metallica track is that there simply aren’t enough songs written about the vengeful God of the Old Testament, are there?
“In the Ghetto” – Elvis Presley
His best song, IMHO. Perhaps best heard drifting in the far distance on the KLF album “Chill Out”, but pretty good in its original form too.
“Since You’ve Been Gone” – Rainbow
This track forms part of the medley we’re singing with choir this season. It’s the whoa-a-whoah-whoahs that really do it for me. An absolute pleasure to sing. End of season concerts coming up soon, so I really need to knuckle down and properly learn those words to “Forever Autumn”… no books allowed.
“The Trooper” – Iron Maiden
I took the Iron Maiden t-shirt I bought at Download to France with us last week. It’s from the “Maiden England” tour, and it features Crimean War-era Eddie, charging down cannons on horseback the front and the classic image from “The Trooper” single cover on the back. The chef in our hotel told me how much he adored my t-shirt, and from that moment onwards, portion sizing was never much of an issue. It seems the French generally are pretty “Sympa” with my taste in t-shirts: a market trader in Meung-sur-Loire once tried to buy my “South Dakota Hard Rockers” t-shirt off my back….
“Missing” – Everything But The Girl
I don’t think I even own this song, but it’s something of a perpetual earworm… well, the Todd Terry remix, anyway. It’s an absolute belter of a record. All the way from 1994, ladies and gentlemen. 21 years old. Feeling old?? Like the deserts miss the rain. Still a beautiful lyric.
“Wanted Man” – Johnny Cash
Initially this seems to be about how bad ass an outlaw Cash is.
“Wanted man in California,
Wanted man in Buffalo
Wanted man in Kansas City,
Wanted man in Ohio”
and then the song takes a slightly different tack:
“Wanted man by Lucy Watson,
Wanted man by Jeannie Brown
Wanted man by Nellie Johnson,
Wanted man in this next town”
Oh, I see. Johnny. You old devil!
“Turning Japanese” – The Vapors
About wanking, apparently. Not really sure why this popped into my head on Friday whilst I was sitting at my desk. Perhaps it’s best not too probe that too deeply other than because it’s a brilliant tune.
“This Night Has Opened My Eyes” – The Smiths
Morrissey played at Nottingham Arena last week. Even if I hadn’t been in France, I wouldn’t have gone: his last few albums have stretched my patience pretty thin (as have his remarks about how eating meat was JUST THE SAME as paedophilia). I haven’t even heard his most recent release. It’s apparently his last tour – he’s apparently had some health problems – and, by all accounts he was really good. I’m pleased. He played a huge part in my musical development, and I’ve been delighted to work my way through the Smiths back catalogue over the last few days. “Hatful of Hollow”, which I originally bought as a French import CD at a record fair in Birmingham at a time when the band’s UK catalogue was unavailable, is packed full of great versions of their songs and is perhaps my favourite long player. Amongst all those songs, it was this sombre little number that jumped out at me this week.
“In a river the colour of lead,
Immerse the baby’s head.
Wrap her up in the news of the world,
Dump her on a doorstep, girl”
Bleak, kitchen-sink drama and entirely typical of early Morrissey lyrics. It’s a hauntingly beautiful song, and there’s never been anyone in music quite like The Smiths or a lyricist quite like Morrissey. We’ll miss him when he’s gone.
Have a good weekend, y'all. It's a light one for us: just parkrun tomorrow morning and then the Reading Half Marathon. Well, it's light when you'd otherwise be doing an 18-miler....