Fascinating Things : Issue 67

Apologies for the small hiatus but I have been busy on record label business. We have a fun packed few months coming up, most of this I cannot tell you about yet, but suffice to say it involves gigs and releases, and all will be revealed soon. What I can tell you is i’ve been asked to facilitate a gig in Salford for Belgium based US  artist in exile Georgio “The Dove” Valentino in support of his soon to be released 7″ which was made in collaboration with Mick Harvey, David McClymont, Dave Graney and Clare Moore. The gig will be at the Eagle in Salford on December 3rd and we have two local bands supporting. The excellent Adventures of Salvador, whose new album “Chocolate & Drugs” is bloomin’ marvellous, plus the ethereal Rose & The Diamond Hand whose debut EP drops on 12th August, together with a launch gig on 13th August at the self-same Eagle. The whole thing is only £5 and you can book your e-ticket here. Here’s a taster of what to expect:

GTDV Promo Poster

Anyhow, enough of this self-promotion, what else is going on in the wacky world of music?

TESA are a guitar trio from Latvia. They have a new album called “Ghost” released via My Proud Mountain on August 5th.

 

Described as a cross between Tame Impala and Buddy Holly the cleverly named Gringo Star have a new album out called “The Sides and In Between”. It’s a curates egg of a thing with some very high highs and some slightly dull bits but overall very good indeed. Here are two samples. It’s out on August 26th via Pitchfork.

‘Together, As One’ is the third album as a leader from British award-winning trumpet player, composer and band-leader Laura Jurd and her debut with newly named band Dinosaur. Featuring Laura’s regular collaborators, friends and creative cohorts Elliot Galvin, Conor Chaplin and Corrie Dick, ‘Together, As One’ is a coherently powerful and bold album that not only confirms her promise as one of the most important young musicians to emerge from the UK jazz scene in recent years but is also a statement that will launch her music into the international jazz world.

 

Southern Lord will be releasing the brand new LP “Plague” from Bay Area, California hardcore band Lies on August 26th, as well as a CD release that combines the record with their previous EP, 2014’s “Abuse”.

A productive period for Limbs head honcho Michael Chadwick with a couple of new releases. Packed with the usual quirky and witty perspectives on life, highly recommended.

Hailing from Warsaw (Poland) the quartet White Crosses, featuring the creative partnership of Konrad Sloka (Vox/Guitar), Sebastian Prokop (Guitar), Stefan Banaszynski (Bass) and Marcin Plocha (Drums), produced big waves in their native country with their acclaimed EP release ‘Native Handshakes’ in 2015. Releasing ‘Dead Souls’ as a taste of things to come from their forthcoming EP ‘Anchorless’, White Crosses are armed to bring their music to an international audience.

 

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Fascinating Things : Issue 10

Limbs are back with a new five track – excellent as usual.

A new release from North Manchester’s The Madding Crowd is well worth a listen

Left-field alternative combo The Permanent Smilers are soon to release their debut album ‘One Real Big Identity Crisis’. Thirteen brand new songs which have been perfected over two years. The new single from the album is entitled Ghosts.

The Permanent Smilers are fronted by Rich Lemongrower, who writes the songs, sings them, and is responsible for guitars, keyboards and most of the percussion. Jonny Cole plays bass, and Pete Fraser drums. Dave Land (Starlight Express, Dame Shirley Bassey, amongst many others) guests on a number of tracks playing trumpet or flugelhorn. David Pye (Transgressive) completes the team by mixing the songs.

 It’s a fantastic retro sound from a band at the top of their game.

Le Butcherettes, who are in the midst of the ‘Chaos As Usual’ tour with the Melvins, have debuted ‘Shave The Pride’. The song comes from the previously reported forthcoming album,  “A Raw Youth” (Sept. 18, Ipecac Recordings).

Italy’s electro-gaze synth-wave duo A Copy For Collapse has released a new sinister video for ‘Grey Sunday’, the second single from their new LP ‘Waiting For’. This track is quite distinct from the first single ‘No Failure’, which had a strong nugaze element to it and a blissful track to match – this one is much darker with the video following a sinister story line.

 

Twittering Limbs

So good to see Bolton’s finest – Limbs – back with a new EP,  and,as usual,  a generous portion of quality, quirky, tunes with the utterly memorable “Intercourse Intersection” standing out as something a bit special. There is a wry humour to all of this, with the tongue in cheek “The World Is Even Worse Than You Think…..” demonstrating Chadwick and co. can deliver pathos and irony in equal measure.  There are echoes back to the heady days of The Planets in some of the music, but generally it moves forward from the last release…..this is unique english popular music at its best.

Highly recommended.

See also — Mind The Gap

 

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Mind the Gap

I have shared the delightful whimsy of the wonderful Limbs previously, they have recently released a new offering called “Spunk”.

Those of you in the know will be aware that the band is the offspring of the fertile musical mind of Michael Chadwick, once of The Planets, now of Neuron No, and also now a playwright.

Limbs are Michael Chadwick (piano, guitar) , Mark Jones (bass) , Martin Roscoe (drums).

Michael says….“It’s a collection of new Limbs songs I finished a few weeks ago and i’m rather pleased with it too.

I’ve tried my hand at a few other things away from being solely in a band this year. I finished and did a few performances of a musical that I wrote called “Tin Can” (it will be premiered in full at the King’s Arms, Salford next October directed by the new artist in residence there James Baker!!) and I wrote the soundtrack to an unusual theatrical piece called “Yawp” which was staged at Chapel Street Theater (The Black Lion) in November, plus a few other bits and bobs. All good fun and hopefully more theatre stuff to come, but “Spunk” is the first set of songs written for no other purpose than the glory of Limbs.”  

“Tin Can” would appear to revolve around (or maybe orbit) the Limonchik tales (or possibly tails)  released by Neuron No a while back. The soundtracks for both plays are available from Michael’s bandcamp page.

Anyway – a delightful handful of songs in the usual Limbs vaudevillian style – an anglicised Brecht/Weill if you would – with the usual off kilter subject matter including sandwiches, gaps, and spunk. I always feel uplifted by the listening to their work – it’s delightfully joyous and lifts the gloom of a dark winter’s day with it’s relentlessly optimistic sound. If you want a break from the usual stuff you listen to then you would be advised to have a gander at this. A modern day Noel Coward perchance?

The younger Mr Chadwick
The younger Mr Chadwick

Music Diary #18 – 18th January 2012 & Aural Delights Radio Show

So i’m currently wending my way through the massive slab of music that is the new Crippled Black Phoenix  album ((Mankind) The Crafty Ape and I’m wondering why it’s sounding so much like “Dark Side of the Moon”  at the beginning – pleased to advise though it sorts itself out from track three onwards and turns out to be a rather interesting slab of progressive post-rock.  There are two CDs worth here so if you are going to take the plunge then I suggest you set aside an evening to give it a good chance of being heard in totality as that’s the best way to do it.

Also being listened to is Dale Cooper Quartet with the Dictaphones  whose new album is called “Metamanoir” ; again the influence of mid period Floyd tends to bubble under the floating synthesis – this is being described by those in the know as Dark Jazz whatever the hell that means? – there is a definite laminal ambient ECM feel to it with its breathy tenor and shimmering guitar chords – the vocals echo ’50s cool jazz……albeit the lyrics are a tad maudlin in places (I suppose that’s the dark part of the jazz?).  Bit of a grower this one I think.

Note that Mr Springsteen has a new album due (and tour) which is described by Rolling Stone as “wild” —– hmmm, we will see.

Anyway on this weeks Aural Delights Radio Show  we have an interesting balance of indie, rock and prog (some of it nu-prog) – you can check out more information about the artists on their varicose Farcebook pages as linked below, and we conclude as usual with a Kiwi Farley Fumble…….listen here

1 Hong Kong in the 60s Footprints Willow Pattern Songs
2 Streaming Lights it’s a Mystery Single
3 Aperture Good to Know You Demo
4 Disappears Hibernation Sickness Pre Language
5 Toska Wilde and Luis Drayton Phasers Set to Stunning EP
6 The Mike Gatto Band The Phone Box Single
7 Burning Buildings Knowing, Not Knowing The Sleep Tapes
8 The Tapestry Take Turns Single
9 Magnetic Island The Thing Itself and Not the Myth Magnetic Island
10 Van Der Graaf Generator Ship of Fools I Prophecy Disaster
11 Limbs What Will Happen Olympics
12 Trojan Horse and the lights went down…. Trojan Horse
13 Blood Ceremony I’m Coming With You Blood Ceremony
14 Peter Gutteridge Don’t Catch Fire Stroke – Songs for Chris Knox

Music Diary #11 – 11th January 2012 – Aural Delights Radio Show

A relatively quiet day on the new things in box so I will concentrate on this day’s show….which is notable for the large proportion of new things being played.

I would single out the new Disappears album (Pre-Language)  as something to look forward to – now with Sonic Youth’s Steve Shelley on drums this new release has moved on considerably from last years “Guider”. Also pleased to see at last the album from Limbs (Olympics) which further demonstrates Mike Chadwick’s exceptional compositional skill – for fans of quirkly English music this is one to check out. The second part of Earths two-fer “Angels of Darkness, Demons of Light” moves into a far more improvisational area – this is considered music, painfully slow at times, but rich with ideas and sentiment. With the exception of the closing Farley Kiwi Fumble and a classic from The Walkabouts the bulk of the rest is new and unsigned work from around the country. You can find all of these people on Facebook easily.

The playlist is…..and you can hear it here

1 The Cosmonauts The Howl EP
2 Limbs The Worms Want Blood Olympics
3 Streaming Lights Wait A Minute Single
4 Comet Sands The Beautiful and Damned Recordings and Live Demos
5 Curry Quiche Love Went With All The Rest Demo
6 Earth The Corascene Dog Angels of Darkness Demons of Light II
7 Disappears All Gone White Pre Language
8 Invoke Nothings Changed Single
9 Toska Wilde and Luis Drayton Forbidden Fruit EP
10 The Walkabouts Lazarus Heart Ended Up A Stranger
11 After The Ordeal We Divide Single
12 The Coke Authority Great Expectations Demo
13 Magnetic Island Acadia Magnetic Island
14 The Sunshine Fix Last Night I Had A Dream The Future History of the Sunshine Fix

Music Diary #6 – 6th January

Hells teeth – it never rains but it pours etc…..

  • News of a 7CD box set of Peter Hammill live performances – pre-ordered! More info here
  • The debut album by the rather lovely Limbs. It’s called “Olympics” and features a lot of the numbers from the band I have previously played. An interesting departure for Mike Chadwick from Neuron No who mainly focuses on his piano playing with a series of remarkable tunes in a somewhat otherworldly and quirky style. A more fulsome review to follow in due course. Get it here.
  • Forest Fire – Staring at the X – this came out in October last year but i’ve only just got round to it – rather gorgeous indeed with a strong Kraut-disco-punk feel in a VU stylee.
  • Southern Lord will be releasing CD versions of several Poison Idea reissues that TKO Records are currently re-releasing on vinyl. All of the material is being re-mastered by Jack Control (World Burns to Death) and each release includes new, extensive liner notes as well as never before seen photos and previously unreleased bonus material. This Poison Idea reissue series kicks off January 30th, with the re-release of Darby Crash Rides Again: The Early Years. Boasting twenty-nine tracks from the band’s earliest days, the album includes the 100% previously unreleased Boner’s Kitchen demo from 1981, the complete Darby Crash Rides Again demo from 1982, the complete uncut live-on-the-air set from the 1983 KBOO radio benefit, and outtakes from the Record Collectors Are Pretentious Assholes recording session. Much of this material has either been out-of-print or never before officially released! All the recordings have been meticulously restored and mastered by Jack Control at Enormous Door Mastering. The booklet contains liner notes, old flyers and tons of previously unpublished photos from the band’s beginnings. This is a complete no-brainer for Poison Idea fans or any fan of the early days of American hardcore punk. Following Darby Crash Rides Again in January, Southern Lord will also re-release The Fatal Erection Years (Pick Your King/Record Collectors are Pretentious Assholes), War All The Time, Ian Mackaye, Feel The Darkness, We Must Burn and Last Will & Testament throughout 2012.