Monday, 28 May 2012

French Kissing "Wild Woman"

One of the best tunes around at the moment for busting awkward shapes to is French Kissing's completely genius "Wild Woman" (Croque Madame).  If someone ever compiles a Girls In The Garage-style compilation of Geeks In The Garage it will surely be track #1.  I love all its little changes in momentum and the sing-song way in which one of the chaps bemoans that "Everybody's dancing.  Nobody's listening. No one hears the words.".  "Love Is For" on the flip visits the same 50s diner world for a soda and a flirt as Hunx and His Punx did on their fab "Too Young To Be In Love" lp.  With 2 strong, fun sides, this is one boss disc and no mistake!

Aggi Doom 7" launch playlist

May 27, 2012 - 44
(Ace photo by horsemeatpie)

Sunday night gigs are a tough sell.  Some really great groups have played to fairly sparse crowds on recent Sunday nights in Glasgow so it was a great relief to see a healthy crowd for the launch of Aggi Doom's (link below) tremendous debut single.  The group looked amazing, especially drummer Scott in his turban and black robe (dress?) ensemble, and delivered their glamourous gloom pop with verve.  The highlight of their set was the single, "Bring Me The Head", for which they were enhanced by bassist Joan's dad on sax and a friend (whose name I didn't catch - whoops) on clarinet for added No Wave power.   Palms were as full on and as shouty as I could have wished and Northern American War rocked angularly for maybe just a little too long.  The Soft Power Records kids were kind enough to let me dust off some of my 7" vinyl collection and share it with their public.  Here's what I played:

Virginia Astley Love's A Lonely Place To Be (Why Fi?)
The Revolving Paint Dream Sun, Sea, Sand (Creation)
The Snowdrops Mad World (Tears For Fears cover) (Matinee)
Taken By Trees Lost and Found (Rough Trade)
The Jasmine Minks Cold Heart (Creation)
Unrest Yes, She Is My Skinhead Girl (K)
Sunray Baby Honey (The Pastels cover) (Strawberry)
Swell Maps Let's Build A Car (Munster)
Beat Happening Zombie Limbo Time (K)

Lush Sweetness and Light (4AD)
Stereolab The Light That Will Cease To Fail (Big Money Inc.)
Beach Fossils Plastic Flowers (The Wake cover) (Captured Tracks)
The Champagne Socialists The Young Runaways (Slumberland)
The Chalfontes He Loves Me (Mercury – 70s reissue)
Thee Headcoatees My Boyfriend’s Learning Karate (Vinyl Japan)
Bratmobile Cool Schmool (K) – for Angela
Lung Leg Theme Park (Guided Missile)
French Kissing Wild Woman (Croque Madam)
Black Time The Girls In The Garage (Bancroft)
Big Maybelle 96 Tears (? and The Mysterians cover) (Rojac – reissue/grey area)
The Delmontes So It’s Not To Be (Rational)
The Bodines Paradise (Creation)
The Babies Meet Me In The City (Make A Mess) – for James in honour of his lovely Babies tee!
The Rosehips Room In You Heart (The Subway Organisation)
The Gentle Waves Weathershow (Jeepster)
The Flips I Just Don't Know Where I Stand Anymore (Hozac)
My Favorite Go Kid Go (Swingset)
A Certain Ratio Do The Du (Soul Jazz)

>> North American War

Bush Tetras You Can’t Be Funky (ROIR – reissue)
Grass Widow Disappearing Industries (M’lady’s)
Olympic World of Pastelism Hot Wheels (Domino)
Kleenex Beri Beri (For Us)
Kleenex Ain’t You (For Us)
Wax Idols All Too Human (Hozac)
Bleached No Friend Of Mine (Ooga Booga)
Bubblegum Splash Plastic Smile (The Subway Organisation)

>> Palms

The Shop Assistants Safety Net (53rd & 3rd)
Catatonic Youth Control My Gun (Almost Ready)
The Caravelles Lovin’ Just My Style (Dionysus)
Le Tigre The Hot Topic (Wiiija)

>> Aggi Doom

Mika Miko Forensic Scientist (Post Present Medium)
Marlena Shaw California Soul (Jazzman – reissue)
Lightships Sweetness In Her Spark (Geographic)
Jonathan Richman and The Modern Lovers Rollercoaster By The Sea (Beserkley)
Barbara Mercer Hey!! (Golden World)
The Chesterfields Ask Johnny Dee (The Subway Organisation)
Chin Chin We Don't Wanna Be Prisoners (Mississippi)
Hurrah! The Sun Shines Here (Kitchenware)
Sweater Girls Pretty When You Smile (Happy Happy Birthday To Me)
The Tartans West of La Brea (Yay! Label)



Big thanks to David Barbarossa for letting me use his needles. Much appreciated, sir!

Tuesday, 22 May 2012

Aggi Doom single launch!

My admiration for the music of Aggi Doom is well documented so there was never any doubt as to where I was going to be on the evening of Sunday, May 27th - I was only ever going to be at Mono for this:

When I heard that Palms (another great Glasgow group who deserve to have their music pressed onto vinyl) and Northern American War (who, if I remember correctly, were just grand in support of the insufferable Ut and the mighty Divorce last year at Stereo) were also playing, I was even less likely to be staying in to watch Antiques Roadshow.  It's sure to be a memorable evening.  Come along, buy a 7" and salute Livingston's Soft Power Records for having the smarts to make an Aggi Doom 45 a reality.

Palms are sure to play this and it's guaranteed to slay:

Those screams: great on Soundcloud but thrilling live!

Non-Glaswegians can buy the 7" here

Saturday, 12 May 2012

The Demures

Somehow, more than 40 years after Northern Soul became a phenomenon in the UK, incredible unreleased songs are still being unearthed in record company vaults and played at soul clubs.  For example, Ady Croasdell - legendary DJ and the man behind an absurd number of great Kent Records compilations - has recently started including a hitherto unreleased master of The Demures' "I Wanna Be Good To You" in his DJ sets.  Helpfully, for those of us not fortunate enough to be able to spend hours rifling through the vaults of defunct record companies, he's posted a clip from it on the 6T's site. From the excerpt it's a wonderful, bouncing tune with a strong melody and cracking vocal performances.  It really gets you wondering just how something so brilliant never saw a release in the mid-60s.  To Not Unloved, it's at least as good as their (assuming it's the same group!) smashing but better known "Raining Teardrops" single:

To fund the purchase of an original of "Raining Teardrops" (check the most recent sale price here) I would have to sell a kidney so it's impossible that I could ever afford an original demo/white label of "I Wanna Good Be To You" were one ever to show up for sale.  Let's just hope that Ady has shared the sample in order to whet the appetite before Kent issues it on 7"!

While I'm on the subject of Kent Records/6T's, the poster for William Bell's appearance at June's Cleethorpes Weekender is pretty nifty:

Oh, and 6T's is putting on the guy behind this and this at London's 100 Club in July.  Amazing!

Thursday, 10 May 2012

Post "How Soon Is Now?" reading playlist

Tonight's reading/Q&A at Mono with Richard King was really enjoyable. More to follow on that in due course but in the meantime here's what I played (particularly ineptly) this time:

Suicide Cheree (Remix) (Blast First)
Dirty Beaches True Blue (Art Fag)
Grab Grab The Haddock For All We Know (Cherry Red)
The Wake On Our Honeymoon (Captured Tracks -reissue)
Aggi Doom Bring Me The Head (Soft Power)
The Make-up Pow! To The People (Vesuvius)
Amelia Fletcher Can You Keep A Secret? (Fierce Recordings)
A Certain Ratio Do The Du (Soul Jazz)
The Evolution Control Committee Rebel Without A Pause (Pickled Egg)
Sweet Tee I Got Da Feelin' (Cooltempo)
bratmobile Cool Schmool (K)
Unrest Cath Carroll (Teen Beat)
Huggy Bear Her Jazz (Wiiija)
Gang of Four I Found That Essence Rare (Peel Session) (Strange Fruit)
The Petticoats Normal (Blah-Blah-Blah)
My Favorite The Informers and Us (Harriet)
The Bats Made Up In Blue (Flying Nun)
Silicon Teens Just Like Eddie (Mute)
Marie Applebee Toom Toom (Jubilee)
Talulah Gosh Bringing Up Baby (53rd & 3rd)
Adventures In Stereo Nobody's Scared (Subway Sect cover) (Creeping Bent)
Strawberry Whiplash Stop, Look and Listen (Matinee)

Somewhat shockingly for Not Unloved, some of these records were on 12" vinyl (yeah, I know...gasp!).  I had planned to work through the likes of MARRS "Pump Up The Volume" and Bill Drummond's "Julian Cope Is Dead" but, somehow it didn't quite happen.  It was, however, sweet to hear post-Marine Girls group Grab Grab The Haddock at a decent volume in a nice, airy venue where people were chatting in a relaxed way.  It was fun, too, to be able play Aggi Doom's forthcoming single.  Thanks for making that happen Soft Power Records!

Saturday, 5 May 2012

Playing records @ Mono on 9th May

Remember that How Soon Is Now? book reading at Mono I posted about the other day?  Well, I'm excited to say that I'll be loading up my little Buba Box (that's it in the picture) with a much deliberated over selection of 7" singles, bringing it along and playing a bunch of them at it.  Also doing time behind the decks will be my pal Robbie (part of the International Airport association) whose taste in music is impeccable.  As the book is about the mavericks who shaped independent music, expect to hear records on Creation, Mute, Postcard, Factory etc.. It's almost certain that Factory's contribution to culture will be represented this slab of funky doom*:

If that doesn't get you pulling awkward shapes like an anglepoise lamp doing interpretive dance, then you're a lost cause!  Thanks again to S for extending the invitation.  It was lovely to be asked.

* - surely the only song I will ever own with lines about flaying flesh with thoughts...shudder...

Wednesday, 2 May 2012

The Chalfontes "He Loves Me"

How I managed to completely forget the existence of a tune as all-conquering as "He Loves Me" by Detroit's The Chalfontes is a source of real puzzlement to me.  I mean, practically every single sliver of sound information encoded in its grooves is in some way memorable:
  • The ominous bass grumble at the start is so far from standard issue as to make it memorable.
  • The epic Dave Hamilton production (he of the brilliant "Dave Hamilton's Detroit Dancers" series on Kent  Records) with all its builds and fades and little instrumental dialogues is truly memorable.
  • The strident, unrelenting beat is memorable.
  • The guitar solo - almost post-punk in its buttoned-down, geometric austerity - is memorable.
  • Every impassioned word sung be it by the lead singer (as yet Google hasn't turned up her name, shame) or the subtle then soaring backing singers is memorable.
  • Yup, "He Loves Me" is a masterpiece; unforgettable.

For me it's not far off Rose Batiste's "Hit and Run" and The Flirtations' "Nothing But A Heartache" in the female-voiced pop soul stakes.  To ensure that it never slips my mind again, I've just bought a physical copy - a 70s reissue 7", not a 60s original, unfortunately - and have every intention of wearing it out.  If this episode has taught me anything, it's that a bookmarked YouTube link still isn't enough for me.  I still need to pay money for a song on a physical format for it to feel that it's a significant, memorable part of my life.

How Soon Is Next Wednesday?

Wednesday, 9th May at Mono looks interesting.  Richard King is reading from his first book "How Soon Is Now?: The Madmen and Mavericks Who Made Independent Music 1975-2005" (pictured above).  I haven't read the book yet but if this article on the endearing chaos of his time at Revolver Records of Bristol is any guide, it will be an excellent read.  The event starts at 8pm.  Should be fun!

Facebook event here