Mogwai - No
Education = No Future (Fuck The Curfew) EP (Chemikal Underground)
It takes some effort to dislike Mogwai so why bother. Xmas Steps builds
to something tense and pounding which suitably climaxes. However,
"oi strings NO!" Rollerball is subdued, not a thing like the game/sport
we should be participating in, come ten years time. Small Children
In The Background is the sound that they would make if a typhoon came
along and blew them away (the kids that is, not Mogwai). There's a
moment when you realise you're in the eye of the storm, thinking it
was over and then it is. Hairy. Now if John Madden had not been such
a dick, there would have been another track which topped even this.
- Quickspace Happy Song #2 (Kitty Kitty)
This is beefy and chunky, Quickspace at its best. Its amazing how
the flute/recorder/whatever keeps up and prominent. It has a lurching,
jumping feel. Very funky. You can't hear what they're singing about
it but you just know its something good. The b-side is called Ming.
You can't fail with a name like that, its like J Mascis never went
away. Have you been to the pit?
Moby - Honey
I think the sun shines out of Moby's arse. A mumbling idiot is looped
over standard dance backdrop to full effect. And it all works by a
shed. Later Memory Gospel reminds me of Massive Attack when they're
being any good.
Mahonie - split single (Fierce Panda)
Owen has been raving about the Billy Mahonie song he heard on Peel,
so I checked it out. And its the one I heard on there that had the
Nosferatu Man breaks, just like several other bands of the moment.
Its a pretty fine tune, the sort from Spiderland continent. Rothko
attract also with one of those post rock songs that dinks and donks
as a wave of something spins through the distance at an alarming rate.
The bass sounds like thunder (the whole thing is basically bass).
Its rare for me to these days listen to a record and then want to
immediately listen to it again but it happened to this one, both sides.
With Rothko edging it.
Six By Seven
- For You (Mantra)
With each passing single Six By Seven seem to be comfortably mainstreaming
out but this still contains special moments where it really, worthily,
kicks in. And for a b-side we get a long, slow drone track to keep
in the good books of the indie police.
Creed - split single (Bricks Music and Records)
Here we find Colchester's Special Duties tearing through a song railing
against Maximum Rock n Roll, a magazine that chooses not include those
that have had the slightest bit of success, and basically the general
such attitude that very often rears its head in the punk scene. Its
a worthy target, on an operative seemingly so intent on keeping things
small and insular. On the flipside is Japan's The Creed creating the
sound of a band totally going for it.
Four Walls EP (Jonson Family Records)
You should hear from these in the future. Here are four tracks of
laid down bare songs in a kind of Fall manner with vocals edging very
closely to Ian Curtis with a better backing. The guitar sound on Brain
Seems Happy Enough Sleeping reminds me of that attained by Arab Strap
on the track Themetune. Next song and they sound like early early
REM, all making for a pleasant change from hipster drone.
Hole - Celebrity
Skin (A big bad record label)
This tops anything and everything on Live Through This. The b-sides
seriously suck though. I still have plenty of time for Courtney and
despite this having been touched by Billy Corgan's trotter the single
is incredibly catchy, direct, hooky and the vocals/lyrics actually
remain in my consciousness after the song has passed on.
Tiger - Friends
Cool, I thought Tiger had blown it completely, big style, but here
they are back sounding like The Fall. And it works so well and out
the bag comes a miraculous escape.
Dawn Of The
Replicants/Inner Sleeve - split single (Fierce Panda)
Inner Sleeve sound breezy and eighties. Dawn Replicants sound wobbly
here, kicking in at random intervals. Curious split.
Magoo - Swiss
Border Escape (Chemikal Underground)
Chummy. Very poppy, sort of light for Magoo. Probably better live,
like most of their stuff. You do remember how it goes after a few
plays though, so I guess it is catchy and some sort of success. Fuzzy
- split single (MooCow Records)
I won't mess you about or lie to you, I'll just tell you that this
is probably the best seven inch in history. It is the Ultimate Warriors
side that makes it. 9 songs of wrestling themed madness takes control.
We're given a lyrics sheet but you cannot hear the words which is
a shame because its the stuff of genius. The Abathakothie side is
three tracks of messy, noisy instrumentals.
Chapter - Astringent Mask EP (MooCow Records)
This three songer roars. Twenty Third Chapter sound like Household
Names finest Medulla Nocte. The magic moment comes on the b-side when
in slips Travis Bickle's mirror facing speech, making for a frightening
sample and mindset indicator.
Archive - Demo
This three tracker from Plymouth comes on like a Mogwai tribute band
but it does still sound awesome, high above demo quality, albeit heavily
tainted. The first song is Yes! I Am A Long Way From Home with foreign
radio tagged onto the start and finish. The remaining two tracks are
more subdued and don't kick in so hard but do provide a delightful
Be Like Stars (Bad Jazz Recording Co.)
Be Like Stars reminds me of muffled JAMC with its echoing drums and
distanced vocals. Constructing Clouds is one long chant with an ear-splitting
climax. Mad candy.
Various - Leaders
In Lightcontrol EP (Hummy & Joey)
It unfortunately sounds like that this is going to be the final Hummy
& Joey EP. It starts with i s a n blissing out, barely moving. David
Wrench follows sounding like a cross between Nick Cave and Ian Curtis
playing at a piano, reaching. Spare Snare close the EP with a rough
and distorted ride. The diversity of this release works.
- Long Live The UK Music Scene (Che)
Helen Love take the piss. I love their cheeky lyrics but they are
terminally sad and, so as such, really are taking the piss. They stick
around with impressive endurance. I have quite a big thing for namecheck
songs so this is OK (good even) by me. The music however never changes,
Blitzkrieg Bop. Piss take. This band cannot be destroyed. Or even
discouraged. Rhyming Chris Evans and Shed Seven though, genius.
Sketty - Demo
This band were involved with a double booking fracas for upstairs
at the Garage for Gringo Night. The resulting battle royal saw Gringo
victorious. Cannot comment further right now.
Gel - Rosie
And Jim (Che)
Catchy and crappy. I used to sing Rosie And Jim myself: "Rosie and
Jim, Rosie and Jim, what a fucking mess you're in". Its already better.
The Make Up/Lung
Leg - split single (Versuvius)
More of the same from Make Up. Lung Leg weigh in with something very
poppy, sounding like Lush at their height, to me.
The Yummy Fur
- Shoot The Ridiculant (Guided Missile)
The very productive Yummy Fur here have gone all silly and Kraftwerk
and it works against them.
Boys - Park Avenue (GEFFEN, major label inc.)
Reports of them going industrial are painfully true. This smells heavily
of major label interference, and at what date exactly did GVSB turn
into Nine Inch Nails? I really wish there was more I could say, something
optimistic to report but... Kill The Whole Band, they can't even play.
People Program - Noise Vision (Transcopic)
This is actually tops. Hyped because of its label, or rather who runs
it, thankfully the music rules for me. Assembly Line People Program
actually are an interesting band. The first side sounds like the mighty
Devo with the singer from the Knack wheeled out of retirement or interrupted
from his 37th Japanese reunion tour. A factory full of energy and
- Remix EP (Beggars Banquet)
I thought this would be a whole lot better than it is. I guess that's
the thing with dance songs and remixes, for full effect you have to
play them FUCKING LOUD!
Aerial M -
Unfortunately Vivea is not as memorable as Wedding Song No. 3 but
then again it never would be and nothing else is. The standout here
is the Misfits cover on the b-side sounding like anything but a Misfits
number seeing Dave accompanied by nature.
Karate - Operation
split single with Crownhate Ruin (Art Monk)
Operation Sand is too sensitive I think displaying too many REM sensibilities
on show. Terrible starting point for potential Karate fans. The split
with Crownhate Ruin on Art Monk Construction is back in print which
features the awesome Cherry Coke, which we agree is probably their
best recording to date.
- Intergalactic (Grand Royal and ?)
I'll save the general B-Boy praise for the album review. Not the best
Beastie's song but so, all the ingredients are almost nearly all here.
This has you putting on robotic voices and walking squarely to the
beat. For me these are the best rap voices going. The video is hyper
Fat Les - Vindaloo
Just part of the great Colchester scene, by a very vague link. Better
than Echo Bunnyman's World Cup effort and more yobbish than Twee Lions
On A Shirt. I think Keith Allen is fucking great anyway. Peas and
Mash are in the video too, which rightly takes the piss out of The
Verve. Keith Allen recently proclaimed Chris Evans is a cunt in the
new version ("Keith, can I wash your car") and the bit where they
shout bucket can easily be turned into fuck it. Tops. This could be
the best song ever.
- Sunday (Dave Geffen)
This song is pretty cool and actually the track that gets the Thousand
Leaves album running. Also to it's credit, how perfect is the video.
The use of Macauley Culkin is genius. No Home Alone here. Rumours
of Macauley being fucked up have been spreading like wild fire for
ages now, so what do we get: Macauley looking super fucked up by design.
Chic. Credit to the boy though, he knows what he's doing it seems.
And what is happening is that the video is being mentioned almost
everywhere, or at the very least in more places than it would have
been otherwise. He's more interesting than Kim Deal Pollard and Kathleen
Hanna it seems. A subtle breakthrough might still be on the cards.
Who'd have ever expected Phil Gayle of the Big Breakfast to ever be
mentioning Sonic Youth. Similarly Macaulay Culkin, now resembling
a teenage Thom Yorke (v.poor fucker), is receiving much needed cred
and attention after, maybe for, a failed career. Its a long way for
him from being molested by Michael Jackson in order to get on MTV.
And then we get a Nirvana b-side cover for a b-side. The package is
complete. (and then it goes and does fuck all!)
- Rockafellar Skank (some cool dance label)
Dig those disco beats. I shouldn't really like this because it is
the music associated with arseholes. I was chased up the stairs at
Tottenham Court Road station to the sound of some dick singing this.
By accident. I first caught this on MTV and liked it. What a victim.
Repetition rules. And I still like it! Right!
El Hombre Trajeado/the
Karelia - split single (Flotsam & Jetsam)
El Hombre sound fresh and make me feel young. Like Quicksand is like
a song you'd expect to find on a kids documentary on woodlice and
hedgehogs. In other words, it sounds natural. The Karelia remind me
of Folk Implosion, lovely lo fi plastered with FX.
Racket. Terrific din. Crazy songs with Devo like vocals. Epics sounding
like Shellac doing Kashmir. This is an incredibly exciting demo recorded
on a boombox alone.
I Am Too Loud (Domino)
This is better than I ever dared imagine it would/could be. It starts
out total mellow but painful, and distorts into something quite different
but similar. Minimal isn't healthy being this large.
Night Of The Hunted (Super Electro)
More garage than grunge, but its a real thrill to own something new
by Mudhoney. Mark Arm's still catchy and catchin'.
- Space Geek (God Bless)
There is a moment here when a voice goes "and I woke up naked in Colchester".
That'll be Brendan then. The four tracks here are split between two
rockies and two experimenties. And neither win, resulting in a double
Magoo - Holy
Smoke (Chemikal Underground)
Coming on like a popsick Shellac, this is unmistakably Magoo. Good
lead, bad follow.
Summer Here Kids (Big Cat)
The word summer has never found a more fitting home. This song sounds
so free, conjuring up the feeling of being a little 'un in the summer,
being an arsehole and wasting time. This song actually takes off and
Crest - 68
The main track is sort of lacklustre. The b-side, I Have A Sister,
is breathtaking and the sound of a band meeting its potential.
- Slogan (Touch & Go)
Ew. A Serge Gainsbourg cover that's unlike anything I've ever heard
from Blonde Redhead before. I've just seen a clip of Lemon Incest
featuring Gainsbourg and gal. Now I see the point.
New Bomb Turks
- Veronica Lake (Epitaph)
Fast, high fuelled punk rock n roll. It sounds to like the Supersuckers
playing at the wrong speed.
Storm King - Barium Springs (Rainbow Quartz)
My first experience of the Storm King and what a joy. Here is a band
like Magoo and Grandaddy not relenting, with a vocalist at times blending
like Bob Mould. Poppy with daggers.
The Male Nurse
- My Own Private P Swayze (Guided Missile)
They've kind of buggered it up. The Peel version is one of the greatest
things recorded in history. This version betrays last summers brilliance.
Hombre Trajeado - Club Beatroot Part Six (Flotsam And Jetsam)
Here's a slowy from Lung Leg, all sounding very serious. Disappointingly
plodding and painful. El Hombre Trajeado blow them away. They remind
me of the Van Pelt (or what from them I've heard) only extended. They
strike the saddest notes but I still enjoy them. Later on the vocals
come in for a show, pointlessly. One greatest thing alive.
Radio Sweethearts - Club Beatroot Part Five (Flotsam And Jetsam)
Pink Kross crash in and out with Tension Toy. You can either dance
to it or you can't. Personally I can, so wahey. The Radio Sweethearts
on the other hand run the Neil Young/country axis with a song that
sounds a tad like the King Of The Hill theme crossed with The Old
Laughing Lady. No!
- Karneek Temple (Rafter)
The contents of a room clatter to the floor as a wayward shuffle noise
comes crashing into the listeners focus.
El Hombre Trajeado
- Logo (Flotsam & Jetsam)
Here's a vert, whimsical track. Images again recur and the finale
is a question to the answer we all would like to know. Moonunit Manual
sounds like a well functioning rail service, max jangly.
Arcade - Demo
Music from another Dave Pajo fanclub, five instrumentals of mostly