Friday 21 November 2014

those hard-faced queens of misadventure

Earworms of the Week

Hate To Say I Told You So” – The Hives

Possibly the loudest gig I have ever attended was the Hives at Rock City, back in the day. It was one of those where the band are so loud during their first song that you are on the point of actual pain…then, worryingly, the pain goes away and you’re okay. Well, until you get home and realise that your ears are screaming. Good times. Brilliant song. I last saw them live when they were on very early on Friday on the Other Stage at Glastonbury. Straight after Beady Eye, actually. They were a lot better, if that needs to be said. In fact, they were one of the best bands I saw that whole weekend.

Tank Park Salute” – Billy Bragg

The Bragg is often thought of as a political singer-songwriter… and he is…. But when it really comes down to it, he writes best and most often about love and about people. Often it’s about a girl, but here he writes beautifully about his relationship with his father. A real tear-jerker of a song and he doesn’t play it anywhere near often enough live.

All the Wine” – The National

Pretty much as good a description of what it’s like to be epically , joyously drunk that you’re ever likely to find. Much more wine than this and you’re straight into Dead Kennedys territory.

I'm put together beautifully, big wet bottle in my fists, big wet rose in my teeth
I'm a perfect piece of ass like every Californian
So tall I take over the street with high-beams shining on my back
A wingspan unbelievable, I'm a festival, I'm a parade

And all the wine is all for me
And all the wine is all for me
And all the wine is all for me

I'm a birthday candle in a circle of black girls
God is on my side 'cause I'm the child bride
I'm so sorry but the motorcade will have to go around me this time
'Cause God is on my side and I'm the child bride

We’ve all been there, right? I was once asked by a pair of friendly policeman if I minded very much dancing on the pavement instead of the middle of the road….

Hooked on a Feeling” – Blue Swede
O-O-H Child” – The Five Stairsteps

Several months after seeing the film and I’m still listening to the soundtrack. Some of the songs are terrible sexist shite (“Fooled Around and Fell in Love”, I’m looking at YOU!), but many are absolute, solid-gold period classics. I can’t wait for the sequel, can you? I’ve just started watching “Parks & Recreation”, so perhaps I’m just going through a Chris Pratt phase.

Good Riddance (Time of your Life)" – Green Day

Amazingly, I heard this played straight after the ceremony at a wedding. They know what this song is about, right? Why not just go the whole hog and play “I Write Sins not Tragedies” or “D.I.V.O.R.C.E”?

Sheena Is A Punk Rocker” – The Ramones
Africa” - Toto
Bette Davis Eyes” – Kim Carnes

All featured in the “Nana’s Bontempi Organ” round at the pub quiz this week, and all are good enough songs not to be ruined when rendered as a polyphic ringtone. It’s true that the Ramones style template meant it took a moment or two to work out exactly which song it was, but all three are basically instantly recognisable. I actual spent a few minutes at work the other week working up my list of Desert Island Discs, and as I was humming and hawing about my last choice, I quickly realised that any list that didn’t include “Africa” was just going to be a lie. It’s a magnificent, splendid record and it must be one of my all-time favourites, no matter how naff you might think it is. It’s irresistible… even if it does rather fall into the same “making massive sweeping generalisations about an enormous and diverse continent” that Band Aid does. At least it’s a better song. I was actually a little bit disappointed to discover, when visiting Tanzania, that Kilimanjaro doesn’t rise like Olympus above the Serengeti. Toto totally lied to me.

Pipes of Peace” – Paul McCartney

McCartney should sue Sainsbury’s. Their highly acclaimed Christmas advert is a shot-for-shot remake of his 1983 classic. Shot-for-shot!

People Help The People” – Cherry Ghost

This popped up on a playlist I was listening to this week, and as soon as it started, I remembered what a brilliant, brilliant song this is. It’s a good album too, but this is the stand-out track. Simon Aldred has a stunningly good singing voice, and as I googled to find out whatever happened to him, I see that the band actually put out an album in May this year and are playing some Christmas shows. I should probably check that out. And dig out “Thirst for Romance” again. All thanks to my internal jukebox. Int Earworms brilliant?

Have a good weekend, y’all. This is my window of opportunity to do my Xmas shopping. Everyone okay with a bag of Nottinghamshire beer from my local beer shop? Yeah? Sounds good, doesn’t it?

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