Friday 3 November 2006

you cross your fingers and hold your heart...


Look, I need to crack on with my nano novel, so I'll be brief.

Firstly: if you want to see what record I picked out as being (and to hear it too), then you need to head over to Sweeping the Nation.

Secondly: the only substantial dialogue in my nano novel (10,000 words in) has been between two rats. I just thought I should tell you that now.

Right. Any other business? Oh yes. Earworms......

Ladies and Gentleworms, without further ado, please allow me to introduce the artist formerly known as ByTheSeaShore......

Earworms of the Week - Guest Editor #47 - Martin from That Difficult Second Blog

Hello again, and thanks to ST for a second earworm slot. As we haven't reached December there's no Mariah Carey this time, but I think I've managed a few songs of a similar standard.

Hot Chip - Over And Over

No, really, they've done this on purpose haven't they? Surely there's something in the Geneva Convention about weapons grade earworms? This came into my head over a fortnight ago and has absolutely refused to budge. Having said that, what's not to love about a monkey with a miniature cymbal?

Joe Brown - Henry The Eighth

So I thought a song with the lyrics "overandoverandoverandoverandover" was difficult to shift. That was before I saw Joe Brown live this week. I make no apology for doing something so deeply unfashionable, but can't justify this song topping the Billboard charts in 1965. If I'd have been brought up on that, I might have been invading foreign countries on spurious grounds by now. It's the Crazy Frog's 'Axel F' decades before its time.

Girls Aloud - Something Kinda Ooh

With which I throw away any kind of indie credibility I might have had. Ignoring the girls it's all about quality pop music for me, and their career to date just about justifies TV talent shows as far as I'm concerned. Oh, and in my head Cheryl Tweedy and I discuss Foucault and she doesn't punch toilet attendants or consent to a dance-round-your-handbags cover version of 'Jump.'

This is pure pop genius.

Madness - Grey Day

We've all been there, haven't we? Fortunately I'm not there at the moment, but a month or so ago I bought a tenor saxophone with the intention of learning to play an instrument that didn't have strings. Have you heard anything by The Zutons? How difficult can it be? This was so very nearly 'One Step Beyond,' the solo of which I am very slowly learning to play very badly, but that's led to me listening to a lot of Madness recently and this song, probably one of their best, has stuck. After a week's holiday I'm going back to work on Monday at which point 'Grey Day' will probably seem appropriate.

Bon Jovi - Keep The Faith

AKA: The Point At Which Jon Bon Jovi Got A Better Haircut. As I've been off work I've listened to a lot of daytime radio, so thanks to Radio Trent for this one. As much as many people won't admit to ever having bought a Bon Jovi album, I'm prepared to believe that more households own one than a copy of The Bible. Was Jesus a cowboy? On a steel horse did he ride? No, and therefore Jon Bon Jovi is better than Jesus. The internet being what it is, I've got a feeling that there's a blog out there featuring somebody's ten most memorable Bible verses of the week. Good luck to them.

Spacemen 3 - Losing Touch With My Mind

I dropped into Tesco to get some milk after seeing Mitchell and Webb at the Royal Concert Hall last week and bumped into a friend who had spent the evening sitting in the cold outside a local church where Jason Spaceman was playing a sold out gig. It might sound like a ludicrous thing to do, but apparently he played a couple of songs from Sound Of Confusion which to my mind is the best thing Spacemen 3 have done. Presumably they called it "Sound Of Confusion" because HMV doesn't stock albums called "Sounds Of Heroin." Whatever, it's not a great reflection on Mitchell and Webb that he had a better night than I did.

Adam And The Ants - Beat My Guest

I've decided to have a crack at NaNoWriMo for the first time this year. My novel opens some time in the late 80s (I think - I need to check) with a fight at a gig in a pub. The band are playing 'Beat My Guest' which turns out to be a mistake. I've loved this song for years, and am very much of the opinion that Adam was one of the few men of the time who didn't look an utter tit who'd raided his Mum's wardrobe. I may be wrong, but offer Spandau Ballet in my defence.

Gnarls Barkley - Smiley Faces

I thought they were overrated at first, Crazy sounding to me like a Moby castoff. Smiley Faces, however, ahem... rocks. 'Gone Daddy Gone' doesn't so much; if you haven't already heard it please, please listen to the Violent Femmes original instead.

The Smiths - I Started Something I Couldn't Finish

Until last week I hadn't listened to anything by The Smiths for ages, but that scrolling neon sign outside Nottingham Arena that I drive past on the way to work keeps telling me that Morrissey's playing there next month, and according to my iPod this is my most listened-to song ever.

Cole Porter - Another Opening, Another Show

Hmm. Second earworm, second showtune. Last time was shortly after I'd seen 'Chicago' on Broadway. This time? I have absolutely no idea. I had to Google it to find out it was from 'Kiss Me Kate.' I've never even seen 'Kiss Me Kate.' I have absolutely no idea where this has come from. Catchy chorus, though, you've got to admit.

Anyway, you'll have to excuse me because I've left the main characters of my NanoWriMo novel sitting on a pub floor in a puddle of snakebite, urine and broken glass and I'm still 250 words short for the day...


Thanks Martin. That's such a great list (Madness! The Smiths! Adam & the Ants! No Mariah Carey!) that I'm going to put my hand up to owning a copy of "New Jersey" and to having seen the band on the "Keep The Faith" tour and thinking they were brilliant. No shame in liking the Jovi, my friend, no shame at all. He's done a hell of a lot more for mankind than Jesus, undoubtedly. Started fewer wars, for one thing.

Good luck with your Nano novel. Speaking of which.... I just left one of my characters being mysteriously trailed by a strange and insubstantial thing as far as the city walls....


[Previous Guest Editors: Flash, The Urban Fox, Lord Bargain, Retro-Boy, Statue John, Ben, OLS, Ka, Jenni, Aravis, Yoko, Bee, Charlie, Tom, Di, Spin, The Ultimate Olympian, Damo, Mike, RedOne, The NumNum, Leah, Le Moine Perdu, clm, Michael, Hyde, Adem, Alecya, bytheseashore, adamant, Earworms of the Year 2005, Delrico Bandito, Graham, Lithaborn, Phil, Mark II, Stef, Kaptain Kobold, bedshaped, I have ordinary addictions, TheCatGirlSpeaks, Lord B rides again, Tina, Charlie II, Cody Bones, Poll Star, Jenni II]


  1. I've just tried to describe what an explosion sounds like to an iPod. Strange days.

  2. 10,000 words and no dialogue except between vermin? Interesting... ;-)

    That put me in mind of Excession by Iain M Banks which was almost soley made up of dialogue but dialgue between space ships.

    Martin, good call with the earworms. Over and Over is a superb earworm, I think I had it as #1 on my earworms list when it first came around.

  3. Madness. The Smiths. Adam & the Ants.

    Finger on the pulse, me. Down with the kids.

  4. Oh I LOVE that Hot Chip song. In fact the album's probably my most played thing at the moment. And Spacemen 3 - what a blast from the past. Not to mention The Smiths. I'm impressed.

  5. people picking out their favourite bible verses every week?

    you were right!


  6. You've got to love the interweb.

  7. I used to like Leviticus, before it got really famous.

  8. Martin: I've got an Icarus Line cover of 'Losing Touch With My Mind' - very appropriate for them. If you want it, I'll upload it for you.