Friday 11 January 2013

that's right, that's right....

Earworms of the Week

Another year of earworms?  Why not. we go! (dammit. there goes another one)

Tina Dico - "Where Do You Go To Disappear"

I know that Tina Dicow is absolutely massive in her native Denmark, but I don't really have any idea if she sells many records anywhere else in the world.  I know I haven't been paying a massive amount of attention to album releases in the last twelve months or so, but this one (and this is the title track) pretty much completely slipped underneath my radar.  Well, as those of us in the know already know, Tina Dico (as she trades over here) has been releasing some quietly beautiful records for more than five years now.  If you've never heard of her, then I suggest you take some steps to correct that oversight immediately.

Flight of the Conchords - "Hurt Feelings"

As you've probably noticed, I've been on a bit of a Conchords trip this week.  They're very funny, of course, but I think what I like about them the most is that they still write songs that stand up on their own.  They're funny, but it's not just the joke that sustains them.  At this point, I usually use "Carol Brown" as an example, but this week it's been all about this song.

"Some people say that rappers don't have feelings
We have feelings, we have feelings
Some people say that we are not rappers
We're rappers
That hurts our feelings
Hurts our feelings when you say we're not rappers
Some people say that rappers are invincible
We're vincible, we're vincible"

Bring the rhyme!

I love a bit of surreal humour and word play, me.

The Only Ones - "Another Girl, Another Planet"

It's a classic, obviously.... I know that.  But sometimes it takes a chance hearing on the radio to remember what a great song it really is.

Oasis - "Cigarettes and Alcohol"

Ditto.  The last decade of the career of Oasis saw me fall somewhat out of love with them due to the sheer extent of the diminishing returns.... but back in the day, this lot were something really special.  I was at Knebworth, for goodness sake.  I even bought "Be Here Now" on the day of release and played twice before I realised just how disappointed I was by its shocking bloat.  I don't think I've been able to bring myself to listen to it since.  For a couple of years though, these guys were more or less untouchable.  This record in particular still has power.  Knuckle-headed power, I grant you, but power nonetheless.

Grandmaster Flash - "The Message"
Dusty Springfield - "Breakfast in Bed"

I put BBC 6 Music on this morning as I was pottering about in the bathroom, and I was rewarded by this 1-2 whilst I was in the shower.  Pow!  What a fine example of why 6 Music is such a brilliant idea.  I can even just about forgive breakfast show host, Shaun Keaveney, for his blatant stealing of the whole concept of the earworm.  Oh, alright.  It wasn't my idea and it certainly isn't my copyright.  Actually, it's quite nice to see someone else embracing the concept too.   He didn't play my number one below when I texted it in to him on Wednesday though.  Git.  It's like a jungle sometimes, it makes me wonder how I keep from going under...

Django Django - "Default"

This record gets better every single time I hear it and I really can't wait to see them next month.  Hurray!

Cat Power - "Cherokee"

Another artist I absolutely love who released a record in 2012 - her first in several years - that nearly slipped under my radar.  Nearly.....  She's shifted a bit, cropped her hair and embraced a gentle electro-feel to a few of the tracks, but for me it's always going to be about that beautiful, languid voice.  Apparently she's split up with Giovanni Ribisi too, if that sort of thing is important to you.  She's got something of a reputation for being an erratic live performer, but if I get the chance then I'll definitely be taking the risk.

Alt-J - "Tessellate"

Yeah, so I missed the whole Mercury music prize thing too.  This lot won, didn't they?  I've read wildly varying opinions on this album, and I think it's fair to say that the lead singer's voice is probably a bit marmite for some people, but I really like it.  In parts, they remind me a bit of the Fleet Foxes.  Sure, his voice isn't as pure, but at times they really seem to echo the same sort of medieval/choral style sound.  Anyway.  This album is really, really getting under my skin at the moment.  As always, I'm picking up some of the albums of last year.... better late than never, I suppose.

Harry Belafonte - "Man Smart (Woman Smarter)"

The first thing I watched on my Apple TV when I got it home was the recent documentary about Harry Belafonte ("Sing Your Song").  Now, I discovered Belafonte's music in earnest last year, but to see the extent of his commitment to civil rights causes, first in the USA but then across the world, I was staggered.  This is a man who was close to Martin Luther King.  This is a man who was asked by Nelson Mandela if he - Belafonte - remembered him.  This is the man who tirelessly pursues civil rights issues across the world and now, in his 80s, is driving to address the issue of why so many young Americans end up in jail and what can be done about it.  His music is great, but he's a veritable, bona-fide legend and a first class human being.  This song also features some of the best lyrics I've ever heard.

"Garden of Eden was very nice
Adam never work in Paradise
Eve meet snake, Paradise gone
She make Adam work from that day on

Methusaleh spent all his life in tears
Lived without a woman for 900 years
One day he decided to have some fun
The poor man never lived to see 900 and one"

He's clearly a very wise man, that Harry Belafonte.  Mind you, it has to be said that some of the smartest people I know are women, not least my wife, so he's clearly got a point.

Right, that's your lot.  It's been a long week.  Have a good weekend, y'all.

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