Tuesday, May 06, 2008

Full Disclosure

There's some things I''ll happily admit, or maybe admit is the wrong word to use. I'll happily talk about how much bollocks the sodding Beatles add up to. Fuck 'em. Fuck the Beatles. Fuck the shitty Beatles. Yeah, they did some stuff first, so what - fuck 'em. Fuck 'em and fuck those people who think music starts and ends with the fucking Beatles.

Here's proper confession time:

1. I really like Blink 182 and Less than Jake. And NOFX too.

2. I went off one of my favourite bands, Radiohead, when OK Computer got all hyped and jumped on by idiots. Things have never been the same since. It's my own myopic fault for missing out on what is, probly, some of the best music ever made.
I tried to rehabilitate myself with In Rainbows, but it didn't work. Radiohead playing The Forum just after The Bends was released was one of my bestest gigs ever.

3. Sometimes I look at my itunes library of six billion songs and can't find anything I want to listen to, can't find anything that ignites me like the 20 records I had when I was 15. Sometimes i think that's it's all a dead end from here on in. Which, for a music geek like me, is no good.

4. I don't believe in records being "collected" or calling the shitty pile of vinyl I own a collection. "A collection" means one of everything. I dont' want one of everything. All I want is 3 minutes of pure joyous noise where I can experience the moment, and nothing else. I don't want the weight of music history bearing down on me, I don't want context, I don't want to recognise influence, I just want Wow! Blam! Fuck! Like a fucking Lichtenstein painting for my ears!

5. I don't believe in the canonisation of musicians, even if they're ones I like. This goes for Kurt, Lennon, Buckleys, Elliot Smith, Richey Edwards, and the rest. They aren't any more special for being dead. Fuck people who say they are.

6. I got into Belle and Sebastian late, cos I was blinkered by the fact their singer is happily christian when they first came out. This put me off at the time, I now view Tigermilk as being one of the best records ever made. I'm less judgemental these days.

7. I'm an indie snob, and sometimes can't help myself. I'm sorry, BUT, I was into them first. Now us humans don't rely on hunting and gathering meat to survive, is this all we have?

8. I can't really be bothered listening to all the Beefheart records that I inherited. Can't be arsed with Television either.

9. I lost interest in dance music after I stopped taking the drugs. LCD soundsystem doesn't count.

10. I own over 100 Manics records.

And then? Only Martha has the answer:

Martha's Swaery Number

"We're all listening to downbeat shite"

Maybe it's the weather, maybe it's the ingrained national inferiority complex, who cares.
Here's some lyrics from a few of my current favourite tunes:

"And we're all listening to down-beat shite,
We over-did the good times and now we can't sleep at night"

"I'm armed with the past, and the will, and a brick
I might not want you back, but I want to kill him
Leave the rest at arm's length
Keep your naked flesh under your favourite dress"

Good Arms vs Bad Arms - Frightened Rabbit

"Girlfriend, it's you I'd scuttle ships for
Make my first mate walk the plank for
Admire the all or nothing
I'm admiral of nothing at all
Nothing at all"

Admiral - King Creosote

I'm seeing the first two on Saturday (along with Mogwai and Clinic) which will be fab, and then KC in a couple of weeks.

Hooray for Scots miserablism, it really is a thing of beauty...it really makes me happy.

you can buy their wonderful records here, here, and here respectively.

"Are you going to liberate us from male, white, corporate oppression? I just want you to know we can still be friends.."

"Kool Thing" by Sonic Youth (feat Chuck D from Public Enemy) was pretty much one of the first alternative/indie songs I ever heard.

I think this has stood me in pretty good stead for things that followed. Before I heard this tune it was all Cock Rock and thrash metal. After hearing this, and then Ride (on the same mixtape), and then Nirvana released 'Nevermind', things just got better and better.

What was the one tune that you heard (maybe during your formative years?) that forced you to throw everything else out the window and reconsider the musical sphere?

The shape of my heart?

So, yesterday I went to the record shop and bought 7"s by Santogold and Noah and The Whale.
As ejaydee has already done a Santogold post, I've decided to concentrate on Noah and The Whale's "The Shape of My Heart".
Musically it's a bit folky, a bit faux mariachi, and quite a bit Neutral Milk Hotel, with a wee jot of Laura Marling on backing vocals.
(We'll ignore my Laura Marling obsession for the time being, and focus on what Noah's singing about.)

In the song Noah speculates that his heart has been ripped to so many pieces that it's incapable of working any more, but he thinks maybe this is a good thing because he can't be hurt again.
A number of years ago, a flatmate of mine and I would have the same conversation over and over; he would say that what's the point in starting a relationship if you're only ever going to get destroyed by it. I said that the ups make the downs worthwhile. I drew a graph to illustrate my point.
The flatlining middle ground is no place to live, and my friend has unfortunately lurched from one unhappy nearly-relationship to another - as if he's looking for the heartbreak rather than the happiness.
Noah, you're wrong, quite frankly - but i like your song anyway - even if it's not as good as "Five Years Time" which is by far and away one of the best songs I've heard in years.
Here's the video for "The Shape Of My Heart", and then after that "Five Years Time".