Thursday, October 27, 2005

Nourishment Nation

Of course, being on the cutting edge of blogland I hear about all these great new bands before anyone else. In fact, forget before they've released anything, I'm so damn cool I know about bands before they've even been formed! Yeah right, take Rogue Wave I heard them for the first time......About three weeks ago. I bought the soundtrack to the 'Stubbs the Zombie' video game which features the likes of Ben Kweller and Death Cab For Cutie covering 50's/60's classic songs. On there Rogue Wave do a great version of Buddy Holly's 'Everyday' which was enough to get me to seek out there then only album 'Out Of The Shadow' and immediately see why at the time of its release the band were being touted as the next Shins.

The benefit of my ignorance regarding the band was that after buying one album I only had to wait two weeks for a new one to be released. 'Descended Like Vultures' has apparently been drawing some flack because apparently people wanted another copy of the first album, the main difference I see is that the first release was in essence a solo album by Zach Rogue which drew you in with hushed whispers. This time, the band is truly as band with each member bringing their talents to the album and the production is more fully realized. A nod to commercialism or a move away from willful obscurity you can make up your own mind, but the two things that link the albums are the quality of the songs which doesn't let up. Two fine examples of that rare beast complete albums.

I'm not sure if they're still doing it but Sub pop were sending out an extra CD of demos if you bought the album direct from them, which are great to see how the songs progressed. In fact you can do that below.

- Rogue Wave - Publish My Love (demo)

Download - Rogue Wave - Publish My Love

Download - Rogue Wave - 10.1

and from 'Out Of The Shadow'

Download - Rogue Wave - Every Moment

Buy both albums here

The band's website is here

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

Drinking Irn Bru

The first Sarah records single I bought was 'I've Got A Habit' by The Orchids, a band who remained on the label from its very beginning and played their last gig (at that point) at the label's farewell party. The band during their lifetime progressed in terms of their sound and ambition, but right from the start had wonderful songs. A fact best appreciated as every one of their releases have stood the test of time.
Now, following the Field Mice reissues, those bastions of taste at LTM have released the band's three albums on CD, complete with all the singles that never made it to CD the first time round. What's more each CD now includes an insert featuring a history of the band by Alistair Fitchett who writes Tangents, and on his website you can also found an earlier piece on the band. The band have also reformed, recorded some new songs in the last couple of months and I'm sure they'll live up to their past glories.

You can get the CDs direct from LTM in the UK, and in the US I'd recommend Twee Kitten who got them to me in three days along with The Arrogants CD (hint!)

- The Orchids - I've Got A Habit from Lyceum

- The Orchids - Bemused, Confused & Bedraggled from Unholy Soul

- The Orchids - Striving For The Lazy Perfection from the album of the same name.

In the UK/Europe buy the CDs here

In the US buy them here

The tangents page on The Orchids can be found here

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

Pavement Covers

As promised here are a bunch of live Pavement cover versions, enjoy!

- Pavement - 1979 (Smashing Pumpkins)

- Pavement - Where Is My Mind/Gigantic (Pixies)

- Pavement - Big Gay Heart (Lemonheads)

- Pavement - The Killing Moon (Echo & The Bunnymen)

- Pavement - What Goes On (Velvet Underground)

Buy all the Pavement your heart desires here

Monday, October 24, 2005


I've got Teenage Fanclub to thank for alerting me to Pavement. I was in Glasgow and we went into a bar where some of the city's bands were meant to hang out and on this particular afternoon two of Teenage Fanclub were sitting in a corner nursing their pints. I would probably never have approached them but the person I was with, lacking any shame, promptly went over and we ended up chatting to them for half an hour or so. In the course of this they recommended Pavement's 'Trigger Cut' EP which had just come out, and the next day I bought it. After that I bought the odd CD, not knowing that on this side of the pond, my one day to be wife was buying everything they ever put out.
Now of course the band are rightly heralded as worthy of having their albums being re-released in lavish packages with extra songs aplenty and I'm sure one day we'll see the inevitable reunion. In a kind of two part Pavement post, today I thought I'd put up one of my favorite songs of theirs, 'Here', in this instance the Peel session version, along with some covers of it, and tomorrow I'll post some covers by Pavement. So here is 'Here' interpreted by Grandaddy (live) which cuts off sadly so if anyone has a full length version let me know, Tindersticks, and mixed up with the mighty '99 Problems' by Jay-Z

- Pavement - Here (Peel session) buy it here

Grandaddy - Here (live)

- Tindersticks - Here buy it here

- Jay-Z vs Pavement - 99 Problems Here

Saturday, October 22, 2005

Tell Laura I love Her

I had plans to put up the Paul Anka version of 'Smells Like Teen Spirit' today but then my better judgment got the better of me. For those who don't know Mr. Anka has recorded a whole album of rock covers in his Sinatra-lite style so if you wanna hear It's My Life and The Lovecats rendered so his new albums for you, and no-one else frankly. Anyway, to feel this grunge anthem void I present the Credit To The Nation sampling almost hit, and Pansy Division's Kurt endorsed version.

The answer to the previous quiz was Saint Etienne, the covered the Candlewick Green song, sampled the Dusty Springfield song, St. Etienne backing singer Debsy sings in Birdie, and Shampoo started off their illustrious career with two singles on Icerink a label started by the band. The football shirt picture features a Saint Etienne shirt.

Download - Credit To The Nation - Call It What You Want buy it here

Download - Pansy Division - Smells Like Queer Spirit Buy their albums here

Wednesday, October 19, 2005


So the answer to yesterday's teaser was:
Dave Newton was a member of The Wiild Flowers

He left to form The Mighty Lemon Drops

Pop Will Itself released a cover of 'Like An Angel' and in their song 'Can U Dig It?' mention

'Hit The North' now I'm not sure if they were talking about the song by The Fall but its such a great song who cares.

The picture was a promo shot for the long gone radio show also called Hit The North featuring Mark Radcliff, Frank Sidebottom and of course Marc 'Lard' Riley once of The Fall. See easy!

So today, never one to avoid flogging a dead horse here's four more songs, and a picture; How are they all connected?

Candlewick Green - Who Do You Think You Are?

Dusty Springfield - I Can't Wait Until I See My Baby's Face Buy it here

Birdie - Please Rain Fall buy it here

Shampoo - Trouble buy it here

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

Join the dots

So today we have a chance for you to win bragging rights and be the first to let me know how these four songs are connected. Answer tomorrow, and bonus points if you can tie it all in with the picture as well.

Saturday, October 15, 2005

It Was Really Pretty Good

So if you thought yesterday's post was but the gateway to a whole kaboodle of songs by The Arrogants, hold on to your hats as today we can even top that by introducing you if you haven't already met them to Thunderegg. I know you're thinking "huh the state rock of Oregon, since when has this been a geology blog?" (if you want a good time check some of those badboys out). No, Thunderegg, in this case, is a band who have since the distant days of 1993 making music together with various interludes of band members moving around the country. While this was going on Will from the band stayed in New York recording six CDs of four track demos, displaying a perfect mixture of folk, pop, and some of the best heartfelt and humorous lyrics this side of The Lucksmiths. Taking some of these songs the band recorded 'A Very Fine Sample of What's Available at the Mine' which you can purchase directly from the band below. So what have the band done with those other 259 songs recorded as demos? Well some can either be downloaded, yes downloaded from the band's website, purchased on separate CDs, or in the very near future they are going to put onto one MP3 CD 'Open Book' which will also come complete with a very thick booklet of all the lyrics.

If that wasn't enough Will, at the start of the year, began posting at least one new song a week on their website to download. Every Monday you can go there and get your fix of a perfect pop gem to get you through the week. The great thing is, unlike here where we giveth the MP3, and then we cruelly snatch them away from you in a week or so, you can still get all forty plus songs that have been posted so far. So pick a week, download the song and I guarantee you'll then want the whole bunch.

Download - Thunderegg - If A Went On A Diet from 'A Very Fine Sample Of What's Available At The Mine'.buy the album here

Download - Thunderegg - It's Not You, It's Not Me (Pedal Steel version)

Download - Thunderegg - Puffins (version 2)

Download more more more at the band's website here

Friday, October 14, 2005

Cool Shoes

Don't you just hate it when real life and its trials and tribulations get in the way of posting MP3?? Yep me to. Anyway this coming Monday sees the long awaited, by me at least, first full length album by the wonderful Arrogants whats more as well as 23 more fine examples of the great pop songs they've delighted us with in the past 'You've always known best when to say goodbye' comes complete with a free DVD featuring a film made over the last two years as the album was made. If that's not good enough for you it also comes to you for the knockdown price of $8.75 in the US from Twee Kitten at the link below. So put a ring around your calendar for Monday and in the meantime you can check out the songs below including two from the new album and two from their previous two mini albums. What's more the band have made their complete back catalogue available free to download at their website, so dip your toes in the Arrogants paddling pool below, flail around in the shallow end at their website, and then on Monday go the whole hog and depth-charge all the little kids from the highboard on Monday (or something)

Download - The Arrogants - Don't Be So Cynical from 'You've Always Known Best When To Say Goodbye

Download - The Arrogants - Wishing Well also from the new CD

Download - The Arrogants - Why TANG Is My Favorite Band

Download - The Arrogants - Costa Rica

Buy the new album from Twee Kitten here

All of the other Arrrogants downloads can be found at their website here

Friday, October 07, 2005

That Smoooth Jazz Sound

Words cannot describe how much I hate the jazzy stylings of Dame Cleo Laine, the memories of her cropping up on some TV variety show with husband Johnny DANKworth in tow to irritate the hell out of me. So in was with some trepidation I approached the new FREE MP3 EP from Looper as the first song is entitled 'Cleo Laine' but I'm pleased to report the song itself, although apparently about the harpy herself, is a gentle, almost folky, song with a wonderful trumpet part that crops up in the final third. This, and the second song 'Close Your Eyes' both share a quiet quality like someone is whispering in your ear and drawing you closer. The third song is a remix by Bitmap of 'The Strangest Girl' which ups the tempo and volume, and reminds you that Looper are equally at home with beats or songs about bubble haired Dames.

The set of three MP3 EPs that are now available would make up the strongest album Looper have produced so far and in case you were averting your eyes at the mention of the Laine woman earlier they are all free at the link below. Well apart from having to register to receive them, but that is a small price to pay, unless the whole thing is a ploy to get you on Dame Cleo's mailing list?

To download the three Looper EPs go here

An interview we did with Looper from way back when can be found here