Krister from esteemed Swedish culture site Record Turnover kindly asked Not Unloved to contribute a mix to their guest mix series. Since Record Turnover covers both guitar music and electronic acts of all types it seemed only right to do a mix which reflects that. Of couse, there are some great Scottish-based acts (Soursob, Kubler-Ross and Gaming) and some smashing covers (Epic Soundtracks and friends taking on one of the sweetest tracks by The Monkees and Star Party's blasting take on Buba and The Shop Assistants genius "Something To Do"). From 2021 there's a wonderful cut from Bobby Lee's evocative "Origin Myths" lp and a track from Itchy Self's 12" that wouldn't have sounded out of place on Numero Group's tremendous Ork boxset. Of the electronic contingent there's Kara-lis Coverdale's stargazing "A 480" and a stomper from Bobby Flan's 2019 7". Hope you find something to enjoy!
The Lizards (aka Epic Soundtracks) – I Wanna Be Free
Awful Sirs – Rock the Boat
Jason Henn – Carriers
Itchy Self – Playin’ MTV
Galore – Lydia
Bobby Lee – Impregnated By Drops of Rainbow
Kara-lis Coverdale – A 480
Bobby Flan – Cone of Perversity
Gaming – Otago Lane
Angel Corpus Christi – John Cassavettes
The Stray Trolleys (pre-Cleaners From Venus) – Secret Dreams of a Kitchen Porter
In late 2019 Soursob were one of the most exciting groups in Glasgow. Their tape on Fuzzkill was a blast which showcased a group with a real spark and just the right blend of cockiness ("Gizmo"), irreverence (the take-down of a pompous music obsessive on "Shoegaze" will never not be funny) and catchy tunes. Around that time Not Unloved saw them play some great sets at Mono and Nice'n'Sleazy etc. and was all set to ask them to do a 7" for our wee label - I'd even started dropping hints to radio shows like Dynamite Hemorrage - but learning that one of the band members had to return to Australia meant that it didn't happen. The prospect of trying to sell out the pressing with no gigs to help spread the word and a general decline in enthusiasm from music buyers for the 7" format just seemed too difficult. Shortly afterwards, the pandemic-related postal system issues and the well documented vinyl pressing woes experienced by labels made the idea of continuing to release 45s seem like an even worse idea. It was with great delight and more than a little jealousy, therefore, that Not Unloved learned via a Facebook posting last March that HoZac would be be releasing a Soursob 12". Now that it's out. however, it's just great that a wider audience has already or will in the future get to hear Soursob and fall for their cheek and charm. Here's hoping that 2022 brings a buncha new songs and a slew of gigs!
As the stacks of lps currently without a home bear witness,Not Unloved bought way too many records (and tapes and CDs, for that matter!) in 2021. Reviewing the situation, it would appear that a large chunk of these were gentle or instrumental or both. I guess that's, in part, due to another year of home working. Maybe unexpectedly, Bobby Lee's "Origin Myths" was the record that earned the most spins round here.
Not Unloved is no aficionado of dusty Americana but it instantly became a favourite and was easy to play on a loop. Rachel Love's gorgeous "Picture In Mind" album was up there, too, and there were days when the incredibly moving "Space" from Molly Linen's "Days Awake" e.p. was looped over and over without ever coming close to outstaying its welcome. As for reissues, Stephen's "Radar of Small Dogs" had been on Not Unloved's wants list for years so it was a genuine thrill when it was finally made available again even if I did pay well over the odds for a copy of Joyful Noise's "White Label Series" version only to see Liz Harris's Yellow Electric reissue the reissue at a much more affordable price a few months later. Still, what a record!
Shamefully, Not Unloved neglected its duty to share (the sole point of this thing!) for a large chunk of 2021. One of the records (it's actually a cd...no format snobbery here!) that deserved to be shared but wasn't was "Let's Get Shiny!"(Melotron Recordings) by Shiny Times. Shiny Times is the home recording project of Kim Weldin of Tape Waves (whose recent "Bright" album for Emotional Response is a dreamy pop smash) and on the evidence of "Let's Get Shiny!", Weldin's neighbours won't feel compelled to call the cops to report a noise nuisance any time soon. All 6 songs are beautifully sung in a hushed, comforting manner and even the fuzzier guitars are never abrasive or harsh. I tried and failed to decide upon a favourite track to post here but "So Alone" achieves Rose Melberg levels of prettiness and has Not Unloved yearning for the days of photocopied fanzines and mixtapes so it's a good ambassador for the cd. With "Let's Get Shiny!" Kim Weldin has added to the sum total of good things in the world and for that I thank her. Let's hope 2022 brings more Shiny Times!
Maybe it's because the gospel music featured in the tremendous Summer Of Soul was such an unfettered joy, but Not Unloved has been banging its tambourine along with the Lord's music a fair bit of late. Finding a cheap (it's never that expensive) copy in nice condition (it's a cutout but I can deal with that in 2021), of "Tell It Like It Is" by Myrna Summers & The Interdenominational Singers (Cotillion, 1970) in an actual record shop was a real treat. The feel of this lp is great. There's so much energy and such an irresistible (holy?) spirit that even the dourest naysayers will be clapping along in seconds. The beat on "Witness" whips up the proceedings to quite a frenzy and the keyboards add some unexpected drama. Look out your Sunday best and get on the goodfoot!