Friday 7 October 2011

from her fire escape in the sky....

Earworms of the Week

Well, this time last week, I'd just been diving in the Indian Ocean off Zanzibar and was playing volleyball on the beach before heading out for a nice supper.  A week at work is never really going to compare to that, is it?  I'm exhausted... admittedly probably not helped by two (short) runs, a swim and a game of football.  And a flu jab.

Still, you can't stop the music.  Here's this week's procession of sounds from my internal jukebox.

Sloop John B” – Beach Boys

Before we went away, I caught up with Brian Wilson playing on Later with Jools Holland from a few months ago that I've had on Sky+.  I'd kept the episode to watch Warpaint and the Arctic Monkeys, but it was Wilson who starred for me: he played California Girls and Good Vibrations and a song from his album of Gershwin covers.  He didn't play this, but this popped into my head as I was sitting at my desk in the office.  C. used to sing this with her dad as a kind of nursery rhyme when she was little, which is lovely.

Post Break-up Sex” – The Vaccines

A few months after watching them perform at Glastonbury, this song is still hanging around my head.  I *quite* like the album, but it's not amazing or anything.  Like this one though.

Africa” – Toto / “No Woman No Cry” – Bob Marley

Okay.  This much I learned in Africa:

1) Kilimanjaro does not tower like Olympus above the Serengeti.  It's nowhere near the Serengeti.
2) If you play this song in the Serengeti, singing about the rain in Africa, then you're asking for trouble.  We did, and we were.
3) Most Africans LOVE Bob Marley.  Pretty much everyone likes Bob Marley though, right?

PDA” – Interpol

Not as quietly emotional as The National, a band that they are superficially similar too, but Interpol do have a cold, mechanical emotion of their very own.  I like all of their albums, but think their debut is their best, and this is probably my favourite song from it.

The Chain” – Fleetwood Mac

I actually quite like the song, but it's really all about that bit at the end, isn't it?

The Prowler” – Iron Maiden

Dodgy lyrics, but love the raw energy of this song.  Paul Di'Anno's voice is quite a long way from the air-raid siren of Bruce Dickinson though, eh?

I’ve Been Everywhere” – Johnny Cash

I have become acutely conscious that I'm in danger of becoming - or may actually have already become - a travel bore.  It's not that I'm the best traveled person or anything, it's just that I have worked my passport quite hard in the last year or so, and if you're not careful, it can rather dominate your conversation.... you know: in Ecuador we did this, in Namibia we saw that, in Canada we did this that and the other.  Boring, right?  I haven't been everywhere, and I have the scratch-off map to prove it.  So much world, so little time.

Marblehead Johnson” – The Bluetones

"And now my heart's beset / with 18 carat gold regret"

Such a good lyric by such a good band.

Piazza, New York Catcher” – Belle and Sebastian

Love this record so much.

Elope with me Miss Private and we’ll sail around the world 
I will be your Ferdinand and you my wayward girl 
How many nights of talking in hotel rooms can you take? 
How many nights of limping round on pagan holidays? 
Oh elope with me in private and we’ll set something ablaze 
A trail for the devil to erase 

C's my wayward girl, perhaps?

La Marseillaise - specifically as sung at a French rugby international.

If "God Save the Queen" is the worst national anthem in the world - and it's a dirge, managing to upset me by mentioning both God AND the monarchy - then this is surely the best: it's stirring, emotional, up-tempo... it's got everything.  To be honest, I think that national anthems are basically insecurities dressed up as patriotism ("Advance Australia Fair"? seriously?) and we'd be better off getting rid of them entirely, but if I had to pick one, I'd pick this one.

Although, clearly, that doesn't mean I'm backing the French to win tomorrow.  I want the bragging rights in my own house, dammit!

Big Louise” – Scott Walker

I've been listening to a lot of Scott Walker recently.  More than normal, I mean.  Check the lyrics to this song:

She stands all alone 
You can hear her hum softly 
From her fire escape in the sky 
She fills the bags 'neath her eyes 
With the moonbeams 
And cries 'cause the world's passed her by 

Didn't time sounds sweet yesterday? 
In a world filled with friends 
You lose your way 

She's a haunted house 
And her windows are broken 
And the sad young man's gone away 
Her bathrobe's torn 
And tears smudge her lipstick 
And the neighbors just whisper all day 

Didn't time sounds sweet yesterday? 
In a world filled with friends 
 You lose your way

You don't get that from Robbie Williams, do you?

Have a great weekend, y'all.  Enjoy the rugby.

1 comment:

  1. Ah some things never change, good to see quality tuneage still worming it's way from your mind to your pages. Very sad that the Bluetones are gone, thought they were quietly brilliant. Years ago, a band I was in used to do a cover of The Chain, as the voca;ist I felt like everyone was willing me to "get it over with & get to the good bit".