Thursday, June 30, 2005

Fish Reviews The Singles (30/06/05)

Well this is random fun. Or just fun. It’s not actually that random. So yes, Hannah has enlisted my assistance in bloggering hither! I am delighted. (I'll be away from the computer at various points in the summer holidays, so hopefully both Fish and I will be able to take care of this blogging lark between us, so WL doesn't crash and burn through lack of inactivity. You might see a little more of Jamie and Leo around the place, too, but I'm not promising anything - H x)

Anyway, Fish does single reviews!

Okay, so. First off. When I first heard Backstreet Boys had a new song out, my immediate reaction was Oh good Nicky. This was a bad, bad day for Fishkind and anyone else with a thimbleful of sense. The ‘epic’ videos, the terrible over-acting, the ‘heart-wrenching’ lyrics are all back with a vengeance and are JUST AS BAD AS BEFORE. Spare yourself from Incomplete! 0/5

The Faders - JumpWell here goes my credibility straight away. I rather like Jump by The Faders, okay?! No, I am not entirely sure why. Yes, they’re probably more manufactured than a Cheesestring and a shameless attempt to be all ‘Oh em gee look at us we’re an all-grrl ROCK band!!’ and the song is just...I don’t even know...but it gets stuck in my head.. and they have a girl bassist (and I play bass)...and thus I can’t help it... I like it. So hey. They get a pass on this one. 3/5

Hmm. As a pretty big Feeder fan, I have to say I don’t reckon the world to Pushing The Senses. Feeling A Moment was spiffing. Didn’t like Tumble and Fall. This one lies somewhere in the middle. I can’t actually find much wrong with it, but it just doesn’t grab me at all. Middle of the road stuff in my opinion. 3/5

Hmm, Papa Roach. Last Resort was terrible. Getting Away With Murder was wonderful. Scars is just OTTful. Too many power chords and bad lyrics and a mundane sound. I listened to it once and that was enough. They think they’re megastars and need to release a big power ballad, methinks. Doesn’t work. There is no power in the ballad. JUST DRIVEL. 1/5

NY Excuse by Soulwax. Now THIS is more like it. It's rather weird. I like weird. If I remember correctly they are Belgian, too. All good. I also like the video very much. Environmentalish type stuffs and the line ‘this excuse that we’re making – it is good enough for what you’re paying?’ = fun times. Well, interesting times anyways. It rises above the drone of most meaningless and pointless ‘music’ in both it’s quirkiness and pointfulness and thus, I like it. 4/5

Last of all is Slow Hands by Interpol. It’s a re-release so I’m not going to ramble on about it for an age, but I adored it first time round and I still adore it now. 5/5

However the ‘Single Of The Week’ (oooh!) from me has to be Time To Waste by Alkaline Trio.
In fact, I would quite happily nominate this for Single Of The Year except that Empty Souls by the Manics would win by default. But anyway – that shows how good it is. Intelliegent, interesting, dark and sarcastic, as you would expect from the Trio, but, as with many of the songs on Time To Wastethe new album ‘Crimson’, it even rises above the usual wonderousness of their past triumphs. This is an insanely under-rated band at a new level of impressiveness. Musically, this song is, as always with A3, simple yet perfect, and impossible to imitate. My Chemical Romance and their hundreds of peers WISH they were this band. Alkaline Trio have never been popular and probably never will be. Which in a sense is good. For those who are in on what is one of the very best bands around, we have a nice little secret for ourselves with no it-band tag to ruin it. 5/5

More Releases:

Airbiscuit – Lately, Alkaline Trio - Time To Waste, Amos Lee – Colours, Backstreet Boys – Incomplete, A Change Of Pace - Loose Lips Sink Ships, Charlotte Church - Crazy Chick, Colder - Wrong Baby, Damien Dempsey - Sing All Your Cares Away, David Grubbs and the Wingdale Community Singers - Give It A Kiss/My Les Paul [7” only], Distophia - Children Know The Score, The Early November - Acoustic EP, The Faders – Jump, Feeder - Pushing The Senses, Five O Clock Heroes - Head Games, Getamped - Tyrannosaurus [7” only], The Giraffes - Having Fun EP, Interpol - Slow Hands, Mario - Here I Go Again, Millionaire - We Don’t Live There Anymore/For A Maid [7” only], The Mystery Jets - On My Feet, Papa Roach – Scars, Part Chimp - War Machine, Ritmo Dynamic - Calinda 05, Roni Size Ft Jocelyn Brown - Sing [12” only], Royksopp - Only This Moment, Soft Hearted Scientists - Midnight Mutinies EP, Soulwax - NY Excuse, Stanton Warriors - Head Roc/Steal The Pressure [12” only], Talent Star 2005 - More Than The Need, The Tears – Lovers, The Tempramentals - I Could Let You Love Me [NCQ], Towers Of London - **** It Up, We Are Scientists - Nobody Move, Nobody Get Hurt

Saturday, June 25, 2005

Hannah's Single of the Week (20/06/05)

Apologies for the lack of blogging this week, but I've had the last of my exams (the two that needed the most revision!) and I've been a little busy. There's also been little that's really grabbed me, this week. Everything out that I've heard just ranks as 'not half bad' but nothing more, really. Maybe they're growers and I just haven't had the chance to listen enough. However, what I will say is visit and there, folks, is my single of the week, from Damien Rice.

Next week I should be back with a full update, along with a few gig reports in the weeks to come. For now, I recommend watching Glastonbury on the BBC. Great stuff.

More Releases:
2 Pac Ft Elton John - Ghetto Gospel, 50 Cent - Just A Lil Bit, Airbiscuit – Lately, Armand Van Helden - Into Your Eyes, Be Your Own Pet - First Department, Belle Lawrence - Never Trust A Stranger/I Think We’re Alone Now, Bizarre – Rockstar, Bobby Valentino - Slow Down, The Checks - What You Heard, Colder - Wrong Baby, D4 - What I Want [Ltd Ed], Damien Dempsey - Sing All Our Cares Away, Damien Rice - Unplayed Piano, Days Of Worth - State Of Me, Erasure - Here I Go Impossible Again/All This Time Still Falling Out Of Love, Frog Must Die - Kill The Frog, Gavin DeGraw - I Don’t Want To Be, Hard-Fi - Hard To Beat, Ian Britt - Life Ain’t Made, Jackson Analogue – Stop, Juan MacLean - Tito’s Way, Ladytron – Sugar, The Little Flames - Put Up Your Dukes, John, The Long Blondes - Appropriation (By Another Name), Lyca Sleep - Closer In, Martha Wainwright - When The Day Is Short, The Mascara Story - This Is Not A Bruise, MIA - Bucky Done Gun, Michael Woods Ft Judge Jules - So Special, Millionaire - We Don’t Live There Anymore/For A Maid [Ltd Ed 7” only], Missy Elliott Ft Ciara & Fatman Scoop - Lose Control, M.V.P. - Rock Your Body, Ocean Colour Scene - This Day Should Last Forever, Shayan - Soul/Born To Love, The Shout Out Louds - Very Loud, Si Connelly - Baby I’m Tired EP [Ltd Ed 7” only], Simple Plan - Welcome To My Life, Stereophonics – Superman, Steve Harley & Cockney Rebel - Make Me Smile (Come Up And See Me), Stoney - Soap In A Bathtub, The Subways - Rock N Roll Queen, Superthriller - Ahjustwannadance [7” only], Tom Vek - CC (You Set Me On Fire)

Monday, June 13, 2005

Hannah's Single of the Week (13/06/05)

Yes, I'm back. And yes, what a week to be back. There's a plethora of huge (or at least interesting) releases this week from both the big shots and the WL favourites, some of which, rather surprisingly, haven't yet managed to reach my ears. Please leave any recommendations for what I really should have a listen to in the comments, or just comment to say hi - it's nice to know who's reading!

Anyway, before the bulk of this week's post, I have to once again say there is a lot of stuff worth a (even if it's rather brief) mention, this week. 'All Night Disco Party' is a quirky little release from The Brakes, and is worth a listen, as is Garbage's second single from 'Bleed Like Me', entitled 'Sex Is Not The Enemy'. It's a typical Garbage song and video, featuring Shirley becoming a bit of a manic street preacher in the name of sex - great stuff. Green Day also release their big ballad, 'Wake Me Up When September Ends' which is the effort of the 'world's biggest punk band' to tug a little on your heartstrings. It works quite well, although I'm a little annoyed by the presumptuous TV ads proclaiming it a 'hit single' before its week of release.

Special Mention:

Patrick Wolf - 'Wind In The Wires'
Wind In The WiresTo any of you who have not yet had the good fortune to discover him, Patrick Wolf is an absolute delight to the ears, and a refreshing change from the usual soundtrack of WL. To try and find him a few more fans (he’s virtually unknown in mainstream circles) I think I really should review this second single to be taken from Patrick’s second album, ‘Wind In The Wires’. While the first single ‘The Libertine’ (currently in the running for WL single of the year) was faster-paced and more intense, this gentler offering still has a magnificent crescendo and the unique voice that belongs to Patrick, himself, which I never fail to be absolutely captivated by. I really can’t say an awful lot about the song, except for the fact that you should listen, and can do, here. It’s a beautifully crafted track, although I really recommend buying the album to get a broader view of Patrick’s masterful creativity. 4/5

Single of the Week:

Do Me Bad Things - 'Move In Stereo'
Move In StereoI’m inclined to say only the best of Do Me Bad Things. After all, I can safely say that they are the only band to send me multicoloured rock candy through the post and to take me on a voyage of musical discovery, proving that first impressions aren’t always the most accurate. ‘Move In Stereo’ is yet another single from the band’s fabulously glam debut album, ‘Yes’. Originally titled ‘Liv Ullman On Drums’ it was changed to take the catchier subtitle ‘Move In Stereo’ for a single release. It is easily one of my favourites from the album, has a nifty little video (guitars for legs – great concept!), a sax solo and five vocalists belting out harmonies like there’s no tomorrow, alongside some mean power chords. However, hearing (and seeing!) is believing, so have a watch of the video, courtesy of TOTP. DMBT may be a bit of a novelty act, but in the age of the Crazy Frog, this is much more fun. 5/5

More Releases:
Ambulance Ltd - Primitive (The Way I Treat You), Bark Psychosis - 400 Winters EP, Basement Jaxx Ft Lisa Kekaula - U Don’t Know Me, The Brakes - All Night Disco Party, Cdoass - Speak To Me/Chemicals [7" only], The Conway Story - Ghost Writer, The Cribs - Mirror Kisses, The Dead 60s - Loaded Gun, Death From Above 1979 - Black History Month, DJ Sammy – Why, Do Me Bad Things - Move In Stereo, The Engineers – Home, The Fallout Trust - When We Are Gone, Fightstar - Paint Your Target, Garbage - Sex Is Not The Enemy, Green Day - Wake Me Up When September Ends, Jack Johnson - Good People, Jem - Just A Ride, Josh Rouse - It’s The Night-time, Kano - Remember Me, The Long Blondes - Appropriation (By Any Other Name), The Longcut - A Quiet Life, Malik Yusef Ft Kanye West & Common - Wouldn’t You Like To?, Melanie Brown – Today, Michael Woods Ft Judge Jules - Sp Special, Missy Elliott Ft Fatman Scoop & Ciara - Lose Control, Nelly - N Dey Say, Poker Pets Ft Nate James - Lovin’ You, The Race - Raising Children, Reuben - A Kick In The Mouth, Riton – Candy, Shakin Stevens - Trouble/This Ole’ House, Slipknot - Before I Forget [7" only], Son of Dave - Goddamn/San Francisco [7" only], Special Needs - Blue Skies, Steve Harley and Cockney Rebel - (Make Me Smile) Come Up And See Me, Strip Music - 24 Hours [7" only], Tears For Fears - Everyone Loves A Happy Ending/Call Me Mellow, Van Der Kill - Echo Beach

Saturday, June 04, 2005

Bring on July...

My last exam takes place on 24th June, so I've decided that I'll be back to full time blogging shortly after that date, or at least until I get dragged to foreign (or not-so-foreign) shores to meet a variety of relatives and Disney characters.

Thanks to Simon of SVC for reminding me I still have this thing and an incurable desire to blog about chart goings-on. Until I'm back for good, however, I recommend visiting We Love 1997, where I occasionally write, but is mostly taken care of by the fabulous Woodshed.

As for what I've been doing in my absence...
I saw the fabulous Manic Street Preachers. Although, strictly speaking, that was before I left, I never got to blog about the entire experience. It was wild, fantastic and featured a setlist packed with songs from 'The Holy Bible'. I've also been exercising my inner-Britpopper by seeing Supergrass on their latest tour, playing a fine selection of their greatest hits (minus 'Alright', funnily enough) and pleasing crowds of drunken students. The day after, suitably tired, I celebrated my last day of compulsary education by taking a trip up to Stoke to see the amazing Dogs Die In Hot Cars. I had the best view of any gig I had ever been to, and thoroughly enjoyed myself.

As for the music I've been buying - there's not been a lot of it. I've acquired the entire Manic Street Preachers albums back catalogue, as well as the debuts from Do Me Bad Things and The Futureheads.

Singles I Missed (and deserve to be raved about):

The Magic Numbers - 'Forever Lost'
If you haven't heard this song, you are seriously missing out. It's mellow, summery pop at its best, with some gorgeous harmonies...and lots of facial hair. There's a cute semi-animated video, too, if you like that sort of thing.

British Sea Power - 'Please Stand Up'
It's the only song of theirs I've heard and I adore it, and I'm desperate to hear the album, because this track is not their best. There's better yet to come? I can't wait.

See you in a few weeks time.