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Thursday, 16 September 2021

I'm Going to a Gig!

 


If things go according to plan tonight I will be attending my first gig since I saw King Creosote in the Concert Hall back on 12th March 2020.

The Teenage Fanclub concert at the Barrowlands was initially scheduled for 5th November 2020. It was then put back to 5th April 2021 so hopefully it is third time lucky. It's been a wee while since I last saw them.

Presumably the original tour was scheduled to promote their most recent album Endless Arcade which was belatedly released on 30th April 2021. It is the first album without Gerry Love  and the first to include Euros Child.

It's fair to say that reviews have been mixed. It's no Songs From Northern Britain but it has gradually grown on me with each listen. Unfortunately I have not had the opportunity to listen to it in the run up to the concert as the music room is still out of action. The flooring has been upgraded with the carpet scheduled to be fitted tomorrow.

I recently finally picked up a copy of Howdy! but again haven't yet been able to give it a proper listen.

Here's a track from Endless Arcade and one from Howdy! to keep both you and me going.

Teenage Fanclub - Warm Embrace

Teenage Fanclub - I Need Direction

Sunday, 12 September 2021

No Depression #35 - Gillian Welch

 


No Depression - The Bi-monthly Journal of Alt- Country
#35 -  September - October  2001

Whereas I was struggling to find something to say about the last cover star Patty Lawless I'm not anticipating any such problem when it comes to Gillian Welch.

The main article centres on the her 3rd album Time (The Relevator) released on 31st July 2001 on the Alcony label. The album is on the shelves but they are currently still horizontal as opposed to vertical and in considerable disarray. I have, however, managed to retrieve a copy of Elvis Presley Blues on the hard drive from an Uncut compilation.

The article by Grant Alden starts with the line Gillian Welch leaves much unspoken,trusting her music.An accurate comment as she is very much from the less is more school. Her voice and Dave Rawling's acoustic guitar are enough. When I saw them play at a sold out Barrowlands you could have heard a pin drop.

As mentioned above this was her third album For a while she was not the most prolific of artists releasing only 5 albums between 1996 and  2011 whilst achieving wider prominence via her contribution to the O Brother, Where Art Thou? compilation.

She was much more prolific during lockdown with Boots No 1 The Official Revival Bootleg , Boots No 2 The Lost Songs Vols 1-3 and All the Good Times.

I have songs by all the artists listed at the top of the cover. The least well known is probably Amy Allison despite being the writer of The Whiskey Makes You Sweeter which was recorded by Laura Cantrell. When things are up and running I can feel a series of artists called Amy  coming your way.

Hopefully I'll be back properly soon




Thursday, 2 September 2021

Renovations

 


There will be a vastly reduced service here over the next few weeks due to holidays and the fact that the music room is being refloored and carpeted.

This has required moving around 1300 hundred CDs, over 500 albums and my hi-fi all of which has been quite an ordeal and which has made me pretty twitchy. It then all has to go back once the floor has been sorted. Hopefully this will make the room much warmer and more comfortable that it currently is.

Prior to any further upheaval I'm off to a Real Ale weekend with my pals to steady my nerves. I may appear intermittently during September but hopefully will be back up and running properly in early October.
Wish me luck.






Wednesday, 1 September 2021

Fables of the Reconstruction

 



Another visit to Missing Records, another R.E.M. CD on  the IRS label for a pound.
This time round it was Fables of the Reconstruction their 3rd album from 1985. By my Reckoning (did you see what I did there?) that leaves only one of the five, namely their debut Murmur, to acquire. 
There are also still a couple of their albums from the 2000's to get but these don't really count as they are not essential.

Produced by Joe Boyd, whose previous productions include Fairport Convention and Nick Drake among others, apparently it is a  concept album with Southern Gothic themes and characters.

Given 8.4/10 and their 5th best  by The Robster who mentions that it is the band's least favourite record.As an aside it is interesting, but probably not surprising, to note that The Robster has the 5 IRS albums as his top 5 R.E.M. albums

I haven't had a chance to give it a proper listen yet for reasons that will become clearer shortly so I have opted for the three singles from the album, the first two of which I am more familiar with as they also appear on the Eponymous compilation album

I think that this was one which I had on cassette which long ago ended up as landfill.




Tuesday, 31 August 2021

Atlantic R&B Volume 5

 


I picked up Atlantic R&B Volume 1 1947 -1952 a few years ago and the plan was to get round to picking up the other seven volumes.
For years nothing happened but the pace has been stepped up significantly over  the last few months with me acquiring Volumes 3 and 4 in a Charity shop in late April/early May.

Now on my recent visit to Missing Records I came away with Volumes 5 to 8 for a tenner. So now I'm keeping my eyes peeled for Volume 2 to complete the set.

Volume 5 covers the period 1961- 1965 and features the likes of Solomon Burke, Otis Redding, Joe Tex and Don Covay. All legends who have graced these pages before.
I've decided to feature some of the ladies today.Barbara Lewis and Doris Troy make their debuts whereas Esther Phillips has appeared here before as Little Esther Phillips as part of my Little & Large series.






Monday, 30 August 2021

The Hanging Stars

 


The Hanging Stars  described on their Bandcamp page  as providing Cosmic Country from London Town recently came to my attention when someone on Twitter compared them to The Rockingbirds and Cosmic Rough Riders.
Their website goes further Blending folk pastoralism with swampy 60s Americana, The Hanging Stars sound like the missing link between the California desert sun and the grey skies of London Town.

Given those descriptions further exploration was clearly required. It turns out that they have released three albums to date Over The Silvery Lake (2016), Songs For Somewhere Else (2018) and A New Kind of Sky (2020)

All are excellent and well worth having. Loose Records are releasing their 4th album in 2022 although I haven't managed to find out its name yet. They seem to have started touring again but sadly not yet north of the border. Should they ever come to Glasgow I can guarantee that you will find me in the audience.

Here are a couple from the debut album to whet your appetite



Sunday, 29 August 2021

No Depression #34 = Patty Loveless

 




No Depression - The Bi-monthly Journal of Alt- Country
#34 -  July -August 2001

The third issue of No Depression on the shelves is the first to cause me some hard work as I know very little about Patty Loveless. I had always assumed that she was more mainstream country. This belief was reinforced as I could find nothing on the Americana shelves but a couple of tracks on the mainstream Country shelves on compilations called Women in Country and O Sister Where Art Thou.

On reading the main article Down From the Mountain her inclusion becomes clearer and the sub -title Patty Loveless ventures deep into the valley of her homegrown soul
Mountain Soul  was released in June 21 In an effort to control her own destiny, rather than be controlled by country radio, Loveless made an abrupt move away from commercial, country/pop and made a stone-cold Bluegrass album in 2001. Mountain Soul was released to numerous critical accolades and sold decently despite a lack of radio support. 
It's not one that I am familiar with but the track The Boys Are Back in Town features on one of the compilations. Not to be confused with Thin Lizzy

Similarly I know very little about the other artists namechecked on the front cover namely Robert Earl Keen, Rhonda Vincent and Scott Miller. Of these the only one who rang a vague bell was Scott Miller who I have a couple of tracks by by him and his band the Commonwealth. and also stuff from the band the V-Roys of which he was a member.As a public service I acquired a copy of his 2017 album Ladies Auxiliary so named as all the musicians who accompany him are women. The things I do for you.

We are back on safer ground next time round.