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Tuesday, 22 August 2017

Architecture & Morality


I picked up Architecture & Morality the third album from 1991 from Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark  recently for 95p in my local charity shop.
Unfortunately it came without the rather splendid outer sleeve designed by Peter Saville and Brett Wickens. Fortunately there is some of their work on the inner sleeve
As it was only the inner sleeve I initially thought it was a 12 inch single so it was a bit of a result when it turned out to be the album.
I've featured two of the three singles from the album Joan of Arc which made number 5 in the singles chart and Souvenir which got to number 3 which was the highest for any of their singles.

It would be remiss of me to feature this without  a reference to the legendary Half Man Half Biscuit and Architecture, Morality, Ted and Alice. Genius as always.

Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark - Maid of Orleans

Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark - Souvenir

Half Man Half Biscuit - Architecture, Morality, Ted and Alice

Monday, 21 August 2017

Anyone for Tennis?


I woke up the other morning thinking about tennis players who have featured  in the title of songs.As you do.
Two immediately jumped to mind.
First up is The Iceman from Sweden Bjorn Borg multiple grand slam winner and one of the all time greats

He features in the title but not in the lyrics of The Ballad of Bjorn Borg a song on the Pernice Brothers  2001 album The World Wont End


Bjorn is followed by Conchita Martinez  who in 1994 was the first Spanish player to win the woman's singles title at Wimbledon her only grand slam  victory although she did reach another two finals.
She is also the subject of a song on Saint Etienne's 1993 debut album So Tough.

I briefly thought of featuring Billie Jean but then thought the better of it.
Any other suggestions welcomed.

Pernice Brothers - The Ballad of Bjorn Borg

Saint Etienne - Conchita Martinez

Sunday, 20 August 2017

Jackie Brown


On Wednesday's Burnt Offerings post I mentioned that The Delphonics first came to my attention when their song Didn't I (Blow Your Mind This Time) featured in Quentin Tarantino's 1997 film Jackie Brown.

This led to some reminiscence in the comments section from Brian , Alyson and Jamie about discovering them in the same way and the tape in the car scene.
I can't find a clip of that so this will have to do







In addition to introducing me to the Delphonics it also brought Bobby Womack to my attention.
I had vaguely heard of him but the fabulous Across 110th Street which starts the film completely blew me away and led to me seeking out more of his stuff.

I've posted it before but make no apologies for posting it again.

The Delfonics - Didn't I (Blow Your Mind This Time)

Bobby Womack - Across 110th Street

Saturday, 19 August 2017

Vintage Country Vinyl - Conway Twitty


Conway Twitty - great name, great hair, great clothes - pretty average singer
He released a shed load of albums from 1959 up to his death in 1993 aged just 59
Play Guitar Play is from 1977 (just when punk rock was hitting Britain) and reached number 3 in the US Country Charts. My copy was purchased  recently in the Wigtown Community shop along with a truly awful Chet Atkins album which I will not subject you to
I would describe him as a poor man's George Jones.
Sadly Mr & Mrs Twitty did not  actually have a son called Conway - rather he was christened  Harold Lloyd Jenkins which doesn't really have the same ring to it

The second song is for all us bloggers other halves!

Conway Twitty - I Can't Believe She Gives It All To Me

Conway Twitty - One in a Million


Friday, 18 August 2017

The Blues Collection - Koko Taylor Revisited


Wang Dang Doodle by Koko Taylor was the first of the Blues Collection CD's I bought way back in December 2003. The following day I revisited  the charity shop and negotiated a job lot.

Koko has been long overdue a re-airing. She sprung to my mind recently for two reasons.
Firstly, Drew recently played a belter of a song by Linda Jones and her voice and delivery put me in mind of Koko.
Secondly I have just finished reading Feel Like Going Home the first in the great roots trilogy by Peter Guralnick.
In the chapter when he visits Chess Records in Chicago he tells of meeting Koko in the lobby who was there on her day off her work as a maid..Probably only a few years after these songs were recorded in 1965.
I suspect that many of the artists in the series needed a day job from time to time to break even.

Koko Taylor - Don't Mess With The Messer

Koko Taylor - Wang Dang Doodle

Thursday, 17 August 2017

Papa Was a Rodeo


As I mentioned the other day I've finally got around to acquiring 69 Love Songs by the Magnetic Fields.
There is a lot to digest and I am taking my time and getting there slowly.

It does however give me the opportunity to finally compare and contrast the original of Papa Was a Rodeo with the cover by Kelly Hogan.
Taken from Beneath the Country Underdog a 2000 album on Bloodshot and billed as Kelly Hogan & the Pine Valley Cosmonauts it has long been a firm favourite of mine.
I would go as far as saying it is probably one of my top 10 songs ever and it has certainly appeared on just about every CD mixtape compilation I have compiled since then..

The Magnetic Fields original is of course excellent but obviously not as good as Kelly

What a coincidence your Papa was a Rodeo too

The Magnetic Fields - Papa Was a Rodeo

Kelly Hogan & the Pine Valley Cosmonauts - Papa Was a Rodeo

Wednesday, 16 August 2017

Burnt Offerings 30


We are off to Sheffield, Philadelphia and Maryhill this week in the 30th installment of Burnt Offerings.

We start with Sheffield indie pop band The Long Blondes  who lasted from 2004 to 2008 releasing two albums in the process
In 2006 they won the NME Philip Hall Radar award and were described by the Guardian as the best unsigned band in the UK.Rough Trade took the hint and in 2006 their debut album Someone to Drive You Home.on which this song features.

The Long Blondes - Giddy Stratosphere


Next up are Philadelphia Soul trio The Delfonics who first crossed my radar when their song Didn't I (Blow Your Mind this Time) featured in the Quentin Tarantino film from 1997 Jackie Brown. This their other big number was released in 1968 a year before Didn't I

The Delfonics - La La Means I Love You


Finally, from Maryhill in Glasgow we have the Urban Spaceman himself  the hippy folkie Donovan Leitch
From 1966 Sunshine Superman topped the Billboard Hot 100 for one week and reached number 2 in the UK
He is still going strong and was inducted into the Rock'n'Roll Hall of Fame in 2012.
If you hang around long enough ....

Donovan - Sunshine Superman

The penultimate assorted nonsense selection next Wednesday

Tuesday, 15 August 2017

Digital Tea Towels


This is the Kit have a new album out called Moonshine Freeze
The first 500 who bought it including The Swede also got a limited edition tea towel (pictured above) designed by Ava  Carrère 
George bought it at around the same time but as he bought it digitally he did not get a free tea towel.

I'm throwing out a challenge to the scientific community. We can put men on the moon, clone sheep, identify the DNA genome.
Surely it is not beyond some of these great minds to successfully devise a downloadable tea towel. Over to you folks.

I don't have Moonshine Freeze yet but now they have a new album out I figure I can feature something from the previous one  Bashed Out.

This is the Kit - Silver John

This is the Kit - Spores All Settling

Monday, 14 August 2017

34 Satellite


The other day I stumbled across a CD I didn't know I had (a rare but not unique experience)
It is Radar by a band called 34 Satellite. I suspect it may have come my way in a bunch of burns from my pal Harry.
Some research tells me that they are from Colorado  and this is their second album from 2000.on Hideaway Records
Both All Music and Pop Matters make comparisons with The Replacements. They put me more in mind of Teenage Fanclub, early Wilco and The Silos -the latter being hardly surprising given that Walter Salas Humara is involved in the production.
It is not bad at all and is one that will be played more frequently in future

34 Satellite - Riverside

34 Satellite - Molasses

Sunday, 13 August 2017

Otis Redding in Europe


Today sees the final instalment of the Stranraer Sixties Soul vinyl trilogy with Otis Redding in Europe from 1968 on the Stax label.
It seems to be exactly the same album as Otis Redding Live in Europe from 1967 on Volt/Alco

His first live album and the only one released during his lifetime.A recording of a concert at the Olympia Theatre, Paris on 21st March 1967 with Booker T and the MGs as his backing band.

I'm assuming that it was the same person who handed these three albums in for charity. Someone who I would happily buy a pint for.

Otis Redding - I've Been Loving You Too Long

Otis Redding- My Girl

Saturday, 12 August 2017

Introducing The Hillbilly Moon Explosion


This would have been your Friday night entertainment but for the sad demise of Glen Campbell. Now it is your Saturday night entertainment.You can thank me later.
Hillbilly Moon Explosion so named because main man Oliver Beroni was previously in a band called the Hillbilly Headhunters and main woman Emanuela Hutter was in MD Moon
I was unaware up until now that they are Swiss
These are from their 2002 debut. They are still on the go. my brother saw them last year when he was working in Belfast.
Rockabilly certainly but in homage to their name I can hear a wee bit of Hillbilly putting me in mind of the great  BR5-49

Hillbilly Moon Explosion - Maniac Lover

Hillbilly Moon Explosion - All She Wants

Friday, 11 August 2017

Boy Child


Inspired partly by Rol's inspired ICA and by a growing awareness that it really should be on the shelves I finally got round to purchasing 69 Love Songs by The Magnetic Fields with some of my birthday money.

You will appreciate that with 69 songs to get through it will take me a few listens before it features here.
However on an initial cursory listen Stephen Merritt's voice immediately put me in mind of Noel Scott Engel or Scott Walker if you prefer
Here then are a couple of songs from the compilation Boy Child - the best of 1967-1970 which features tracks from Scott, Scott 2, Scott 3, Scott 4 and 'Til The Band Comes In.
Majestic.

Scott Walker - It's Raining Today

Scott Walker - Boy Child

Thursday, 10 August 2017

Burnt Offerings 29


We are down to the last four this week and are featuring three ladies, two of whom are Canadian and not Joni Mitchell.
The lady pictured above is not Canadian but is certainly the first person called Ernestine to feature on these pages.
It is the Jazz and Blues legend Ernestine Anderson with T'aint Nobody's Bizness (If I Do) She died in 2006 aged 87 and I suspect that someone with great taste posted this as a tribute

Ernestine Anderson - T'aint Nobody's Bizness (If I Do)



The fist Canadian who is not Joni Mitchell is Sarah Harmer who may well also be the first Sarah to feature here
She is a singer/songwriter and also a former member of a band called The Saddletramps.
This song is from her 2005 album  I'm a Mountain nominated for the Canadian album of the year.
She is also an activist co-founding PERL an organisation which campaigned to protect the Niagara Escarpment from a proposed gravel development. Good on her I say



Finally we have another Canadian who  is not Joni Mitchell and who is not the first Amy to appear on these pages. Amy Millan performs both as a solo artist and as a member of the bands Stars and Broken Social Scene. This song comes from her 2006 debut solo album Honey From The Tombs and is rather lovely.


Number 30 next week.

Wednesday, 9 August 2017

Tuesday, 8 August 2017

Magic Moments


My mum would have been 77 today.
When we were clearing out her stuff from the Care Home one of the staff gave me a copy of a Life Story type book she had been working on with my mum.
In it my mum mentioned something that I wasn't aware of when she mentioned that Magic Moments was probably her favourite song
Coincidentally Mrs CC came home a couple of weeks ago with a couple of Perry Como albums which she had picked up for 50p a pop .One was his 40 Greatest Hits one of the few records my folks owned. Magic Moments is the first track.

Perry Como - Magic Moments

Perry Como - Catch a Falling Star

Monday, 7 August 2017

Looking for a Fight


This week's slice of Americana comes courtesy of The Sweetback Sisters with a couple of tracks from their second album from 2011 Looking For a Fight.
Based in Brooklyn as opposed to the deep South they are actually a sextet with two co-lead singers Zara Bode and Emily Miller.
They are a sort of retro- country tribute act and to me some of their songs work and others don't.
For me these two work.A credible cover of a Dwight Yoakam classic followed by a song which has a touch of Freakwater about it

The Sweetback Sisters - It Won't Hurt When I Fall Down From This Barstool

The Sweetback Sisters - Don't Put Her Down. You Helped Put Her There

Sunday, 6 August 2017

Levi Stubbs is No Longer Crying


When I posted Levi Stubbs'  Tears by Billy  Bragg last November I confessed to owning nothing by the Four Tops. I was quite rightly taken to task by all and sundry.
I am pleased to report that Levi Stubbs is no longer crying as I picked up a copy of their 1968 Greatest Hits on Tamla Motown on my last visit to Stanraer. It is in considerably better nick than last week's British Motown Chartbusters.
So here are Levi, Duke Fakir, Obie Benson and Lawrence Payton in all their glory with two absolute belters from the  mercurial pens of Holland, Dozier and Holland.

Four Tops - You Keep Running Away

Four Tops - Standing in the Shadows of Love

Saturday, 5 August 2017

The Class of 2006 - August


The second 2006 Uncut Playlist purchased in Stranraer  and which has since found it's way back to a charity shop was from the month of August.
Not too many standouts on this one to be honest. I have resisted posting Venus in Furs as you are all familiar with it.
Instead you are getting the great Malian artist Ali Farka Touré with a song from his 2006 album Savane. Sadly he had passed on in the March of that year aged 66.
Golden Smog - no posts for ages and then two come along at once just like Corporation buses. The first featured on these pages on 25th May this year and here they are again. This time it is a song from their album Another Fine Day which as I am sure you have worked out was released in 20116.

Something not from 2016 for you next Saturday.

Ali Farka Touré- Beto

Golden Smog - Listen Joe


Friday, 4 August 2017

Polecats Are Go!


Along with the likes of The Stray Cats and The Shaking Pyramids , The Polecats were part of a brief new wave of rockabilly towards the end of the seventies.

They are probably best known for their covers of John I'm Only Dancing and Jeepster and also having Boz Boorer the future guitarist, musical director and co-songwriter of Morrissey within their midst.
These songs are from Polecats Are Go! their 1981 debut album on the Mercury label.
They somehow lasted up to 1989

The Polecats - Red, Ready, Amber

The Polecats -All Night Long

Thursday, 3 August 2017

She's A Modern Girl


The standout track on Burnt Offerings 28 is the cover by Camera Obscura of Modern Girl the smash hit single by Bellshill's finest Sheena Easton.
It couldn't feature yesterday as they have graced these pages before and the rules is the rules.

So instead you are getting it today . Plus it is probably illegal to feature the band without paying homage to the classic Lloyd, Are You Ready to be Heartbroken from their 2006 album Let's Get Out of this Country.
Pure quality indie pop

Camera Obscura - Modern Girl

Camera Oscura - Lloyd, i'm Ready to be Heartbroken

Wednesday, 2 August 2017

Burnt Offerings 28


First up this week are The Rosy Nolan Band with a track from their self released 2006 album Phantom Hymns. 
Obscure Sounds describe them as following in the footsteps of fellow Southern influenced revivalists Neko Case and Jenny Lewis
Can't really see it myself
She still seems to be playing in the Los Angeles area but I don't see any evidence of a second album

The Rosy Nolan Band - Nobody's Fool


On the basis of their pictures  if nothing else the Melvins were getting in whether they were good or not.As it turns out their cover of Candy O by the Cars is short but pretty good fun.Doom metal (whatever that is) merchants from Montesano, Wshington The boy with the hair is Buzz Osborne

Melvins - Candy O



I'm quite surprised that Andrew Bird has never appeared before. He has certainly popped up on other BO discs but has obviously been trumped by other artists.
Anyone who has been in bands called Squirrel Nut Zippers and Bowl of Fire is surely worth a mention.
He has churned out 13 albums over the last 20 years initially as part of the above bands and as a solo artist from 2003 onwards. Heretics is from his 2007 album Armchair Apocrypha

Andrew Bird - Heretics

More assorted nonsense next week - we're nearly there!

Tuesday, 1 August 2017

Sky Like a Broken Clock


Some mellow jazzy blues for you today from Kelly Joe Phelps who would have featured in my Three Names series had I not got bored with it.
Sky Like a Broken Clock ( a set of low-key abstract story-songs about voodoo,sin and prostitution - Allmusic)  his fourth album from 2001 and on Rykodisc is the only one of  his I have and coincides from a time that I was listening a lot to the Paul Jones Rhythm and Blues show on Radio 2.

I subsequently saw him at King Tuts which was probably the wrong venue for his mellow approach..

Taylor John remains a wonderful tune though.

Kelly Joe Phelps - Taylor John

Kelly Joe Phelps - Tommy