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  • Reproduction, Track by Track

    21. Mär. 2009, 10:50

    It's a bit of a shame that after those three years recording songs about sericulture, medieval time-warps, black holes, Doctor Who and crows having affairs with babies that the The Human League got to #1 with a straightfoward song of bitter love called Don't You Want Me.
    But I digress, this is their very first album and it's dark, claustrophobic and downright fantastic. Here be the tracks...

    1.Almost Medieval
    "There's something in your soul, that makes me feel so old. In fact, I think I've died about six hundred times..."
    Wow, surely one of their best ever songs. It summarises the early human league material well, metallic sounding drum machines, collosal analogue synths combined with sinister lyrics about time travel and alienation.

    2.Circus Of Death
    Alas, the original fast version of this song is a lot better even though the sound quality is lower. Still, the album version is not bad and the silly spoken word bit done in a low voice still makes me smile like a lunatic.

    3.The Path of Least Resistance
    Opens with something sounding like the bagpipe preset on an old casiotone keyboard (not a bad thing!) and some low tapping noises. After 36 seconds of this, the song bursts into a clashing synthesiser epic about "digging the early grave".
    Remember kids, "the truth is comfort kills."

    4.Blind Youth
    Ah yes! Another favourite of mine.
    "Dehumanisation
    Is such a big word
    Its been around since
    Richard the third"
    'Nuff said.

    5.The Word Before Last
    Ooh, a quite one. Cryptic lyrics, but possibly about a man losing his job and his wife? It ends abrubtly with a radio telling us that "Mrs Thatcher's first three months in power were disastrous"

    6.Empire State Human
    The poppiest song on the album is also the best. Layers of buzzing synths and pitch altered describe Phil Oakey's quest to be
    "Tall, tall, tall, I want to be tall, tall, tall
    As big as a wall, wall, wall, as big as a wall, wall, wall
    And if I'm not tall, tall, tall, then I will crawl, crawl, crawl
    Because I'm not tall, tall, tall, tall, tall, tall, tall, tall
    Tall, tall, tall, I want to be tall, tall, tall
    As big as a wall, wall, wall, as big as a wall, wall, wall
    And if I'm not tall, tall, tall, then I will crawl, crawl, crawl
    Because I'm not tall, tall, tall, tall, tall, tall, tall, tall"
    Super Stuff.

    7.Morale...You've Lost That Loving Feeling
    Spooky, chilling and minimalistic. One solitary roland synthesiser describes a tale of a dead relationship before bursting into a completely different song about a dead relationship which was originally performed The Righteous Brothers. Of course their version had an ochestra and whatnot. I much prefer this version with it's glockenspiels,string machines and harmonies.

    8.Austerity/Girl One (Medley)
    Once again, we get two tracks in one although its hard to tell where one ends and the other starts. The first one concerns a man who becomes depressed and ponders on why his daughters left home and then turns into a load of weird lyrics about eels, zinc and journalists. The second seems to be about a girl who wants to please her father by becoming a nurse but continually "makes the patients worse".

    9.Zero As a Limit
    Opens with something that sounds a bit like the marching of feet before evolving into the usual pulsating mess of analogue synthesisers and drum machines. However, it gradually starts to build up speed and reaches a ridiculous speed and a noise like a jumbo jet about to crash land into Robert Moog's workshop. Twice!

  • Wilder, Track By Track

    22. Jan. 2009, 18:20

    One of my all time favourite albums, so here it is track by track

    1.Bent Out Of Shape a really lovely way to open the album, I have a thing for songs that start with drums. The afore-mentioned drums make way for ragtime piano,a weird stuttering synthesiser noise and the usual teardrop horns.

    2.Colours Fly Away a very different beast to bent out of shape. It's loud and brassy with nice guitars from Troy Tate in the chorus.

    3.Seven Views Of Jerusalem almost a folk song? not quite but by teardrop standards it might as well be. there's a strange marimba and percussion groove that runs through most of the song. "I cut off my nose to spite my face!" no idea what Copey's on about but it sounds pretty cool.

    4.Pure Joy sure packs a lot into 1:44. it's mostly guitar and drum driven but not in a "White Stripes" sort of way.

    5.Falling Down Around Me not my favourite but when I played it the cat stopped meowing for food and that can only mean good things.

    6.The Culture Bunker Julian wrote this about the liverpool music scene and his general distaste at the sucess of his peers, friends, enemies etc. Think Pete Wylie and The Bunnymen. It seems designed to be performed live and did indeed become a staple in there live shows.

    7.Passionate Friend This was a mildly-succesful single and they performed it on top of the pops with Julian Cope wearing nothing but an orange night shirt, hmmmm.

    8.Tiny Children The most downbeat and minimalistic song on the whole album. Based on a humming synth noise and some sparse,clanging drums during the song's fadeout, it's lyrics seem incredibly sad without really making much sense. Lovely, no...really.

    9.Like Leila Khaled Said The guitars come out again for this groovy middle eastern thang which opens with some scratchy sounding chords and jingling bell noises.

    10....and The Fighting Takes Over This one is also very guitar based but in a completely different way to track 9. First of all, there are no drums whatsoever. Secondly, its a very downtempo song with similar cryptically sad lyrics to "Tiny Children." The guitars really do sound fantastic and the occasional bit of synthesised string that creeps in at some points in the song only makes it even better.

    11.The Great Dominions My favourite song on the album and arguably the best song the band ever produced. First of all it starts off with a strange synthesised breathing noise which repeats throughout the whole song. About five seconds in, the looped bass and echoing drums are gradually introduced and then Julian's excellent vocals. Next come the mellotron strings and finally the sparse, chiming guitar which accompanies Julian's fantastic chorus of sorts "Mummy, I've Been Fighting Again!" he wails. Surely, one of my favourite lyrics ever.

    Wilder
  • Favourite 6 tunes from my Top 6 artists

    2. Aug. 2008, 19:34

  • Phwoar! New Albums!

    3. Feb. 2008, 8:28

    Yes, thats right. I have received/bought a number of new albums recently that I have already put on my brand shiny new iPod and for the most part they are all very good. My Recent purhcases/gifts include...

    Strange House
    The Horrors are a very strange garage band dressed like extras from a 1960s horror film where everyone was completely off their heads on various halluciogenics.
    Coloufully named, Faris Rotter, Joshua Third, Tomethy Furse, Spider Webb and Coffin Joe have created an album that sounds like The Birthday Party, The Killing Joke and the BBC Radiophonic radio workshop locked in a small gothic suitcase. The doom laden, angry vocals of Faris Rotter front a band of church organs, double amplified guitars and songs with names like "Jack The Ripper" "Death At The Chapel" and "Sheena Is A Parasite." If you are a fan of gothic punk fused with the energy of the present nu rave indie, I'd advise you to check 'em out.

    Wincing the Night Away
    However, The Shins are a completely different kettle of fish. The American Indie/Electro/Folk/Everything band have created a jolly good album that spans the genres and manages to create songs with a good vibe. They experiment with folk, hip hop and pychadelica. The Highlight of the album for me is definetly Phantom Limb which is rather hard to describe. Anyway, "Wincing The Night Away" trundles along like an insightful ferret that enjoys lesser known american indie bands with some obscure yet enjoyable lyrics.


    The Warning
    In case you did not know, Hot Chip are a slightly geeky looking Electro Pop band that are about to release their new album " Made In The Dark" The songs on The Warning have a slightly melancholy tone with sweeping spacelike synths, drum machine loops and Alexis Taylor's soft choir boy voice propelling them along into something that is better than I'm making it sound. Hot Chip write songs about Monkeys playing cymbals and Schoolboys. This makes them enjoyable. Very Enjoyable.
  • My 10 Favourite Album Covers (No Real Order)

    31. Dez. 2007, 17:01

    10.The Clash
    It's simple but.... edgy and punkish!

    9.The Shins - Chutes Too Narrow
    It nicely fits in with the sound of the album as well as looking cool.

    8.Misty's Big Adventure - The Black Hole
    Space Ape. No more description needed.

    7.Julian Cope - World Shut Your Mouth
    Sums him up.

    6.The Cure - Three Imaginary Boys
    Wow! This seems a long way away from the later dark and gothic imagery of serial murders and suicides.

    5.Echo and The Bunnymen - Ocean Rain
    Fits in with the general tone of the album and features underground lakes. I like underground lakes...

    4.Sex Pistols - Never mind the bollocks etc.
    Great artwork makes up for this silly overrated album.

    3.The Horrors - Strange House
    This album scares me, which is probably a good thing.

    2.The JAMs (The KLF To You simpletons!) - Who Killed The JAMs?
    Shows a bonfire burning unsold copies of 1987(WTFIGO?)

    1.David Bowie - The Rise And Fall Of Ziggy Stardust
    Silly but great!
  • If you like Kittens and Ninjas....

    27. Dez. 2007, 17:38

  • Music For Long Car Journeys

    27. Dez. 2007, 17:35

    Whats your favourite music for long car journeys? I like a mixture of things but particularily at the moment it is a mixture of The KLF, The Teardrop Explodes and Echo and The Bunnymen.

    Well actually since I am going to yorkshire there is only one true tune.
    The JAMs - It's grim up north XD