diskant is an independent music community based in Glasgow, Scotland and we have a whole team of people from all over the UK and beyond writing about independent music and culture, from interviews with new and established bands and labels to record and fanzine reviews and articles on art, festivals and politics. There's over ten years of content here so dig in!

 Subscribe in a reader

Recent Interviews

diskant Staff Sites

More Sites We Like

diskant rewind: Mild Head Injury #5

Posted: September 9th, 2008, by Simon Minter

(Originally posted April 2002)

Mild Head Injury by Simon Minter

I know, I know, I’ve left this too late again, and everything I write seems to be the blandest gibberine that’s spilt from my tired, flu-stricken fingers for some time. But I soldier on because I love you, and because I get the guilts easily. No promises about my spelling or quality control, I have faith in the other music columnists here to carry me through this time of uninspiration.

Split 7″
Earworm WORMSS11

Crazy mad weird stuff this. Nik Turner’s Fantastic Allstars (featuring Nik Turner of Hawkwind, no less) do a kind of John-Coltrane-recorded-by-Stock-Aitken-and-Waterman-in-a-Stray-Cats-stylee thing, and 46000 Fibres do a Sun Ra tune in a murky, cack-handed triphop way. And that sounds horrible, right? But the strange thing is, something about the naive sounds here and the general feeling of being entirely off your face on hallucinogenics whilst listening to it give this record a unique charm.
THE SLEEVE: is an Earworm singles club standard sleeve, a generic two-colour affair with a sticker on it. ‘Workmanlike’ is the term.

A Boy, a Girl and a Rendez-vous

Red Roses For Me RRFMCD01
A 15-song compilation which seems almost like a CD version of an old-school indiepop compilation tape (the likes of which are so very rarely seen around in these cynical, digital times). The thing about those tapes was that they were so cheap that you could put up with a few duff tracks on the understanding that there’d be a gem or two hidden away there too. The same theory applies here too, really, because whilst this dips somewhat in the middle (getting into a bit of a solitary-indie-boy-strumming-guitar-about-lost-love thang for four or five tracks), there’s good stuff aplenty going on. The mood never entirely shifts away from the indiepop/Sarah way of doing things, but hey – that’s not a problem for me. So, White Town, The Sugargliders, Callow and Tree Fort Angst all deliver assuredly soft-centred and tuneful tunes, with the absolute jewel being The Aislers Set whose ‘Hit the Snow’ is like Spectoresque girl group melody gone cute. Throughout the other tracks (The Dudley Corporation, Watoo Watoo, Lovejoy, Bart & Friends, The Windmills, The Jordans, Aberdeen, The Zambonis, The Arrogants and The Lucksmiths there are a couple of moments which remind me why I went off that whole cutie/Sarah scene, but that’s just my evil, black heart for you.
THE SLEEVE: sepia-style photographs of obviously American scenes give off a certain charm, but the use of what looks to be the nightmarish Impact typeface is inexcusable!

When Cupid meets Psyche
Dreamy Records REM015CD
The lush production and off-kilter, I-just-wasn’t-born-for-these-times style of The Real Tuesday Weld seemed charming and original across the length of the single ‘The Valentine E.P.’, but I have to admit it got a little wearing for an entire album. So, while this is a nice, smoky, 1950s-relaxed collection of songs, often feeling like a less French, and less perverse, Serge Gainsbourg, is in no way a bad thing, I’d suggest listening to it bit by bit. I couldn’t stop thinking about White Town whilst listening to this, either, it must be something about the breathy, super-personal-sounding vocals and the crisp sounds. But don’t mention Baby Bird. Gah.
THE SLEEVE: is a very pleasant butterflies-and-Blue Note Records-style layout. It’s just a shame that the majority of CDs come in such standardised packaging.

Timestorm was the signal
Silver Rocket/Minority Records SRR16/MIN07
Eight (long) songs from this enigmatic Czech outfit who artfully bridge the gap between Sonic Youth, Spiritualized, Warser Gate, Can and Mother Goose. And yes, that is a complicated gap, isn’t it? The addition of instruments like saxophone and flute add a somewhat King Crimson-esque twist to the proceedings. Are there bands that sound like this in England? And if there are, why aren’t I hearing them?
THE SLEEVE: a nice blue fold-out job with some weird bug/sputnik theme.

Split 10″
Three One G 03
Wow, you angry Americans with your moody black record sleeves and shouty bent-out-of-shape aggresorock. You sound like Nation of Ulysses fed through an underground blender laced with Trumans Water guts, with you – Spanakorzo – adding to the punk yeah-yeah edge in a tattooed-biceps kind of fashion, and you – Swing Kids – gettin’ even more negative-positive and bleeding-throat screamy whilst cranking the tension and chaos up to breaking point. We salute you ! This is for annoying the neighbours with, in a super blaaaargh sort of way. A punk-assed Saxon playing the best songs on earth.
THE SLEEVE: punk rock monochrome with an air of quality and a neat flip-it-over split single approach. Mostly BLACK, but the bits which aren’t BLACK are ARTFUL.

Droopy butt begone!
Constellation CST014
Wooh, this is some kind of Godspeed-related-offshoot, or something, is it not? Maybe it’s not. But it’s in a nice, well-printed, thin card sleeve and comes with a few inserts, so what’s a guy supposed to think? Anyway – moving on, this is one o’them bleepy blip blop boopedy-boop albums made out of metal and twine. I saw Squarepusher in slow motion once, building radios out of reclaimed foodstuffs, and he was clutching the masters of this album whilst Faust wandered by shaking their heads in disbelief, holding hands with Coldcut.
THE SLEEVE: well, it’s a Constellation record so it’s clearly a beaut. One-colour printing and textured paper used in a stylish and right-on fashion. I imagine this first came out in some kind of limited edition of 25 made of rocks, or something.

And that’s it for now. I have run out of time. But, as they say, it’s quality not quantity which counts, and I can hear your cries of ‘bullshit!’ from here. I’m away now, to drink as much cranberry juice as it takes to make me feel better again.

Simon Minter

Simon joined diskant after falling on his head from a great height. A diskant legend in his own lifetime Simon has risen up the ranks through a mixture of foolhardiness and wit. When not breaking musical barriers with top pop combo Sunnyvale Noise Sub-element or releasing records in preposterously exciting packaging he relaxes by looking like Steve Albini.


Comments are closed.