Album Of The Year?

Yes it’s that time again……and with it being a very busy year I thought i’d better prepare the long-list early on…..so in no particular order the candidates for this years “Best Of…..” not jazz albums… I’ll whittle it down to a top ten in due course, and I may well include some other ones I have missed and some things in the pipeline which look like they make the list.

There are a couple of very strong front-runners at the moment and after that it all gets a bit difficult…………

  • The Seven Twenty – The Seven Twenty
  • Niche – Heading East
  • Heroin In Tahiti – Sun and Violence
  • Dilly Dally – Sore
  • The Holy Soul – Fortean Times
  • Mammoth Penguins – Hide and Seek
  • The Lancashire Hustlers – What Made Him Run
  • Moff Skellington – Scribnalls
  • Courtney Barnett – Sometimes I Just Sit And Think And Sometimes I Just Think
  • Robert Forster – Songs To Play
  • Bouquet of Dead Crows – Of The Night
  • Dave Graney – Once I Loved The Oceans Roar
  • Monkeys In Love – Take The Biscuit
  • Corrections House – Know How To Carry A Wip
  • Esmerine – Lost Voices
  • Dead Sea Apes – Spectral Domain
  • Moff Skellington – The Corkscrew Tongue
  • Liberez – All Tense Now Lax
  • Vienna Ditto – Circle
  • JD Meatyard – Taking The Asylum
  • Ken Mode – Success
  • Dead to Dying World – Litany
  • Myrkur – M
  • The Creeping Ivies – Your New Favourite Garage Band
  • Ought – Sun Coming Down
  • Big Brave – Au De La
  • The Happy Fallen – Lost and Found
  • Cryin’ Queerwolf – Diva
  • Alif – Aynama -Rtama
  • Dave Graney ‘n’ The Coral Snakes – Night of the Wolverine  (Expanded)
  • ZX+ Don’t Drink The Water
  • Author & Punisher -Melk En Honing
  • Dave Graney & the mistLY – Play mistLY for me – live recordings vol 1
  • Flies On You – Etcetera
  • Brothers of the Sonic Cloth – Brothers of the Sonic Cloth
  • The Go-Betweens – G stands for Go-Betweens : Volume One 1978-1984 (yes I know it’s a box set but it’s too good to ignore)
  • Moff Skellington – The Corduroy Bridge
  • The Fall – Sub Lingual Tablet
  • Minimi Deutsch – Minimi Deutsch
  • Anna Von Hauswolff – The Miraculous
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Fascinating Things : Issue 21

And still they come, it has been a bumper year for new music, and this week in particular has been replete with fantastic, fascinating things:

Mark Corrin – EP7 0 Earthbound (Bandcamp)

Mark continues his run of EPs with three slices of ambient, glitchy, soundscapes. Lots of things going on here, all of them interesting, continuing the quality of material released to date this year.

Dave Graney – Night of the Wolverine demos​/​Early 90s songwriter demos

Seven songs recorded in 1991 on a 4 track cassette that eventually ended up on the Coral Snakes album, “Night Of The Wolverine”, which was recorded in a weekend late in 1992.  The other songs were recorded around the same time. Dave Graney felt hollowed out after the failure to get the album “I Was The Hunter and I Was The Prey” out. Recorded in London with the original Coral Snakes in 1990. It eventually came out in 1992 on Fire Records in the UK. The idea of gathering another head of steam or bunch of songs as strong as that seemed impossible and Dave thought his future lay in being a songwriter for other artists. The last four of these songs were intended to be sung by a female. “I walked with a Saint” and “I’m gonna live my life” which was eventually covered by Lisa Miller.  “Somewhere in the world” was recorded by Tex Perkins for his debut solo album, “Far be it from me” in 1996. This is a stripped down and laid back Dave exploring other avenues and trying out ideas. Historically important as it demonstrates the eventual way forward as well as a different direction that was never embarked on.  The first seven songs are included in the expanded version of Night of the Wolverine recently released on I-Tunes/Amazon so be careful!

 Northern Uproar – Hey Samurai! (Pledge Music)

Effortless, beautifully recorded, laid back superior pop music, a unique blending of classic indie with Spanish influences. It releases on October 9th.  I must admit I missed out on the first phase of the band so this is all relatively new to me.

Theologian – A Means By Which To Break The Surface Of The Real
(Nothing Under The Sun)

Further extends the immense catalog of  recordings through labels including Crucial Blast, Handmade Birds, Malignant Records, the artist’s own Annihilvs Power Electronix. The latest tortured auditory from the soloist and collaborator, Lee M. Bartow (a.k.a. Theologian Prime), comes in the form of four  sequences, nearly forty-five minutes of new material, the closing track taking up nearly twenty-two minutes on its own. This work was created through Bartow’s collaborative explorations with David Castillo (Primitive Weapons, White Widows Pact) and Daniel Suffering (Whorid), with contributions from Matt Slagle and engineer Kevin D. Reilly, Jr., who has periodically worked with Bartow since the earliest incarnations of Navicon Torture Technologies in the mid-late 1990s. “Tortured screams reach out over the tumbling industrial workings below. Low register whispered meanderings slowly rise to meet those screams. Machines’ rhythmic drones fold in on the voices. Sirens invite and warn. Sink into the synthetic abyss” says the promo. Yep, pretty accurate. Not for the faint-hearted. Out on 28th August.

The Happy Fallen – Lost and Found (Bandcamp)

The Happy Fallen is a solo project by Neale James. He has played in many bands over the years, and played with many well respected Manchester musicians/artists including Craig Gannon (of Aztec Camera/ The Smiths), Ivor Perry (Easterhouse/The Cradle), John Bramwell (The Mouth/ I Am Kloot), Stella Grundy (Intastella), and still working on occasional musical projects with Monica Ward (Happy Mondays/Domino Bones).  This album is a collection of old and new recordings. The older recordings have been remixed, remastered with new vocals and instruments added. I have been featuring much of Neale’s work over the last five years and it is really great to finally get a full album from him. Neale creates of heady brew of garage and psychedelic rock – but he does explain that he thinks all music is psychedelic.Highly recommended.

The Last Aural Delights – 31st October 2012

To finish after three years and six months on the steam radio our Reverbnation Artist of the Week for this week and last week  and a selection of my favourite artists.

Notable by their absence are Moff Skellington, Danny Short and Fall Fan Dave & The Lap Top Dancers who will in all likelyhood be the subject of a special podcast  in the not too distant future.

Listen to the show here…..

  • The Happy Fallen – Ultrawave – a new track from the ever productive Mr Neale James
  • Easter – Damp Patch – a track from one of the albums of the year “Innocence Man”
  • The Gin Circle – Sinderella Story – our reverbnation artist of the week , a trio from Leicester
  • Factory Star – Incorruptible – one of the best bands around at the moment from the “New Sacral” release
  • AAAK – Regenerate – another one of the best bands around at the moment – stunning at Salford Music Festival – from “Totalitarian Tip Toe” and featuring another particular favourite – Kin.
  • Neuron No – Limonchik – from the “Little Lemon EP” – a band who never fail to amaze me with their musical abilities….
  • Taser Puppets – Wasp – yet another one of the best bands around at the moment – great songs and a great attitude……
  • We Could Be Astronauts – Loose Lips – were our Reverbnation Artist of the Week last week but I neglected to play them – and being a man of my word I am rectifying that omission.
  • The Gin Circle – Lost To Be Found – as above
  • Da Mutts – Albion Summer – an abiding love for this band and their song-crafting skills…..
  • Kit B – Hulmenoid – Danny Cusick is one of our best song writers and here is another example of his abilities
  • Positronik – Don’t Come Crying – this should be in the charts not that tedious N-Dubz crap
  • Toska Wilde and Luis Drayton – Glamoflage – so should this…..
  • Kill Pretty – The Year of 13 Moons – best tune of the year for me, so I thought I would go out on a high

Thanks for listening – Aural Delights will be back in podcast form in about two weeks on – http://www.mixcloud.com/BobonSCR/……

Salford Music Scene – 23rd October 2012

Listen here

Tunes played were:

Salford Music Scene – 16th October 2012

Stream the show from here

….and this is what I played

1 The Blimp Art Job
2 Factory Acts Senseless (Radio Edit)
3 Skeleton Suite  Sloth
4 Kit B Capo D Monty
5 The Happy Fallen Ground Zero
6 Uncle Paul Anne Sellors Last Chance
7 Dan Solan Hands On Another
8 Naked (On Drugs) Death Dance
9 Kit B Blood In Blood Out
10 Ste McCabe Did You Really
11 Positronik When The Bitch Knows Your Name
12 Streetswimmers Falling
13 Dan Solan We Didn’t Kill Anyone
14 The Fall Idiot Joy Showland

Aural Delights Radio Show – 4th July 2012

Listen here

1 Kit B Beat Those Drums (On A Saturday Night) Salford City Radio Free Download
2 Dave Graney and the MistLY Midnight Cats You’ve Been In My Mind
3 The June Brides A January Moon Moon/Cloud
4 From Ashes Rise Rejoice The End Single
5 High on Fire Blood from Zion The Art of Self Defense
6 Opposite Sex Listen Opposite Sex
7 Moff Skellington Blue Arthritis Thorny Conduits
8 The Wind-Up Dolls Ready to Burn Death By Misadventure
9 Van Der Graaf Generator Extractus Alt
10 Van Der Graaf Generator Tuesday, The Riff Alt
11 Yes Perpetual Change The Yes Album
12 Ded Rabbit Navajo Ice Cream EP
13 General Fiasco Bad Habits Single
14 The Happy Fallen Fire Baby (Disco Remix) Demo

Totalitarians Turns

It was raining.

The hard rain that usually fell on the city next to the rainy city.

I pulled my chinos up so the bottoms would not drag in the puddles, and shuffled down the lane to the bus stop.

The 100 bus arrived on time, just – it meandered through the streets of the city, via the Precinct area,  and onto the main road into the other city.

It was diamond jubilee pageant day. Down south they were sailing boats, up here in the north we were playing music.

I got off the 100 at the end of Chapel Street, and strolled past the new developments to Bloom Street and the Kings Arms. It was unseasonably cold for June.

Annoyingly I had missed two of the bands I wanted to see – Zap Zap Zap, and Saturday Morning Cartoons (members of which were eating chips in the vestibule as I approached the pub).

A pint of Unicorn and a chance to see the last couple of tracks by Ben Peel and the Bradford City Wool Band  who got better as the set progressed. Then  the guitar and drum duo of Ruby Tuesday  who like The Calimocho Club and Kill for Company manage to deliver a big sound with just two players. Intense modern blues rock which demands further hearing. Another pint and then a listen to Dear Sherlock  who came over all Muse/Octopus and didn’t appeal so I nipped off for a bag of crisps and  a natter with Mr Jon Coupe who arrived in his usual dapper attire.

Neale James changes the line up of  The Happy Fallen  every time I see them – this time he has Mike Murray (of Easterhouse fame) alongside him and they work their way through some fine psych garage rock. Would really like to see Neale with a full band behind him as I reckon it could be a hell of a thing to witness.

Downstairs for a rum and coke –  and had a chat with Tamsin about the progress of the Mr Heart album – which is nearly ready.

Another line-up change this time for the next band  Stalagmites who are down to a trio with Brad and Alex sharing bass and guitar duties (“it’s easier for us to write the tunes with this line-up” says Brad) – hadn’t seen the band for a while (about a year) so there has been significant change and I confess I did not recognise a lot of the material. Most enjoyable though and I look forward to more from them – Brad is one our better singers and deserves a wider audience and the group certainly create a huge sound. They will be doing some recording at 6dB in the near future.

Downstairs for another rum and coke and a short chat with Doug and Neil from The Ascension and a meet up with Monty, who has arrived fashionably late, and then back upstairs to watch headliners AAAK. This time around it’s a five piece with Howard Jones on drum pads, Neil Rowbotham on guitar, and Tamsin on vocals and hitting things with sticks, joining Ding and Paul. They are launching the new album Totalitarian Tip Toe and are in breathtakingly good form. It translates well to the live setting and the  additional band members bring an added dynamic to the sound. This music is brave, bold and modern – totally in your face and top tappingly good.  Ding remarks that some of us are dad-dancing and wants us to move a bit more – doesn’t he know we are getting on a bit? Selected tracks from the new album, a new tune (whose name I didn’t catch but which was rather fine indeed) and then the return of the excellent “Sharpshooter” to the set list made for an entertaining 30 minutes – I could have done with a lot more frankly as the grooves were exquisite although I did get an Alannah Currie flashback with Tamsin’s moves when she was menacing the drum pad with a stick. If you haven’t caught AAAK live then I suggest you should as they an excellent outfit and deserve a large audience.

Afterwards a quick lager and another rum and coke with Monty and Chris from Factory Star and then home (thanks to Chris for the lift and the sneaky preview of some excellent music) – it had stopped raining by then.

Kudos to Paul Travis for putting on an excellent day of entertainment – sadly there were not a huge number of people there and if you weren’t and you are local then you missed a belter.