Saturday, 30 August 2008

What's Wrong With The Mainstream - August 08

I'm not going to let a deleted post stop me from posting my monthly playlist so I hope you appreciate this months as I dread to think about the number of hours it will have taken me by the time I finish. I think I said on the original post that there's a lot more dance music on this months playlist. In fact I know this because the old post still comes up on a google search but I can't get to the cached version to ressurect it! Anyway, on with the show...

A great new remix of Hey Boy, Hey Girl by the dudes at Soulwax.

MP3: Link removed

Following on, and keeping the Chemical Brothers theme going, Falling Down by Oasis remixed by The Chemical Brothers.

MP3: Link removed

Iglu and Hartly are getting quite a bit of airtime with their current song In This City, this is a freebie from the band.

MP3: Link removed

The Automatic have come back with a slightly harder sound as they have ditched the shouty (squeeky) guy and picked up another band member on the way. This is another freebie and is the title track from their new album.

MP3: Link removed

Keane are back and they've jumped on the '80s revival band wagon, they've even used guitars this time.

MP3: Link removed

Whitelies new single Death is out anytime now and this song is from them under their previous guise of Fear of Flying. I managed to buy the single from their old record label, I think there are some still available if you want to get your hands on a copy. It took a few listens for me to get in to it, if White Lies' album tracks are as good as this I'll be one happy bunny.

MP3: Link removed


It seems a lot of bands are realising that if they give away free tracks they have more control over which tracks are available. It certainly works on here as I include another free track from Coldplay who are to release a mini album from the left-overs from Vida...

MP3: Link removed

Missing The Killers? Well I thought I'd post one of the tracks off Sawdust, their b-side and rarities album. Enjoy.

MP3: Link removed

As The Rapture's songs work their way further up my most played list I find this song on the blog world. From what I can work out from this track, it's been around a while and never made it on to an album, it's currently on the GTA4 soundtrack. It's a pretty good track too, wish I had a friend called Ben who I could annoy by singing it to...

MP3: Link removed

It's taken computer game companies way too long to add decent soundtracks to games but now you find they're all at it. Following on from GTA, Fifa '09 will have a solid soundtrack included the fantastic The Whip and the quality track Muzzle #1. The album's pretty good too.

MP3: Link removed

Winning longest song title I've posted on my blog, The Legend of the Last of the Outlaw Truckers AKA The Ballad of Sheriff Shorty by The Dandy Warhols. A solid return with a new album, I don't know why but I'd kind of written The Dandy Warhols off. I stand corrected.

MP3: Link removed

I'm told everyone is going mad for Ra Ra Riot and their debut album (out now in all good and bad record shops) I can see why with this quality track. They're from New York if that makes a difference to you.

MP3: Link removed

Thanks to Schonberg for pointing this one out. Joy Division meets Interpol meets Editors. Happy stuff then...

MP3: Link removed

The Boxing Lesson sent me their new album to try out. Thanks, the more I hear this track the more I'm enjoying it. This song's a bit like Kings of Leon although some of the album sounds like Mansun. (Track takes a minute to get going, patience kids)

MP3: Link removed

Streets team up with Muse for a mess about as far as I can work out.

MP3: Link removed

Frieghtened Rabbit have produced Art's favourite album of '08 so far, well that's what he commented when I originally got this post up, I'm sure he still feels the same way.

MP3: Link removed

I think this is the most played song I've added to my iPod recently, I definitely recommend downloading it. That's all I'm going to say.

MP3: Link removed

I'm told this is a bit of an OTT track but I think it works, see what you think.

MP3: Link removed

The Moldy Peaches album came out ages ago but I bought it for a fiver after enjoying the soundtrack to Juno. I particularly like this tongue in cheek track.

MP3: Link removed

Lend me your face, I'll bust it up I'll replace it. What a nice senitment, I'm sure you'll agree. This track reminds me big time of Grandaddy despite the female singer. Bit of Ida Maria in there as well?

MP3: Link removed

Sunday, 24 August 2008

Cooling Towers Tribute

Well the cooling towers came down yesterday morning to mixed feelings in South Yorkshire yesterday. My Sister and Brother-in-Law really liked the cooling towers whereas I was indifferent to them. I thought they were nothing special yet I doubt anything special is going to replace them. EON say it would have cost to much to maintain them and money speaks. I may now live in Bristol but I was born in Sheffield and was brought up in a small town south of Sheffield so if anyone asks where I'm from I say Sheffield with pride - and I'll continue to do so until I start saying "where's you to?", that's "where are you?" to anyone not from the West Country. Below is my playlist of Sheffield bands as a tribute to the towers.

Babies - Pulp

Pulp, the first super band in Sheffield in my time. My sister was in to them in a big way and we always used to sing this together. I put this in ahead of other songs as it was the first one I was in to and because Jarvis name checks a road in Sheffield - Stanhope Road.

MP3: Babies - Pulp

Fake Tales of San Francisco - Arctic Monkeys

I think this is the first song I heard of Arctic Monkeys. Schonberg sang it lots as it became available. Perhaps because he's not from New York City, he's from Rotherham. He also lived close to Hunters Bar (called this because it used to be an old trading post), Schonberg did you used to be in the Arctic Monkeys? Come to think of it you never see Schonberg and Alex Turner in the same room at the same time...

MP3: Fake Tales of San Francisco - Arctic Monkeys

What Will You Do When The Money Goes? - Milburn

A band that seems to create a lot of debate on the internet. Some say they just copied the Arctic Monkeys style, then others point out that they were around first and that they have a different sound. All I know is I like this song (what else matters?)

MP3: What Will You Do When The Money Goes? - Milburn

What The Milkman Saw - Reverend & The Makers

In this song John McClure writes that "this isn't murder it's just Grenoside" an area of Sheffield in the north of city. I'm told that this lyric isn't very unique as around the time Bowie was singing "This aint rock ’n' roll, this is genocide" someone defaced the Welcome to Grenoside sign to say "This ain't rock 'n' roll, this is Grenoside". Thanks to Jim for that little nugget.

MP3: What The Milkman Saw - Reverend & The Makers

Boy Wonder - Speedy

MP3: Boy Wonder - Speedy

Goodnight - Babybird

Forget You're Gorgeous (although it taught me how to spell) this is Babybird's song and reminds me a little of Pure by The Lightening Seeds.

MP3: Goodnight - Babybird

Shot At Politics - Little Man Tate

From their new album, well worth downloading.

MP3: Shot At Politics - Little Man Tate (Link removed)

Giddy Statospheres - The Long Blondes

A great riff starts this Blondie esq track off.

MP3: Giddy Statospheres - The Long Blondes

Baby You're My Light - Richard Hawley

I've been wanting to shoe horn this song on to my blog for a while now. What a beautiful song, I originally heard it on a compilation tape my mate Jim did me years ago.

MP3: Baby You're My Light - Richard Hawley

Temptation - Heaven 17

Oh you've got blue eyes, of you've green eyes....

MP3: Temptation - Heaven 17

20 to 9 - Tiny Dancers

Hailing from West Yorkshire and based in Sheffield, Tiny Dancers mention "far away away from this town of steel" in their most well known song Wait For Me. I have posted this track instead as I've already posted Wait For Me in the past and I think this shows another side to the band. Terrible name for a band but that never stopped Shed Seven...

MP3: 20 to 9 - Tiny Dancers

Breathe (A Little Deeper) - Blameless

I didn't know until recently this band were from Sheffield, in fact I'd assumed they were from America. I picked up their album when I was living in Reading for a bargain £1 only to find that it didn't have this song on it. I eventually tracked the single down on eBay. I used to listen to this loads when I was at Sheffield Hallam and so it always makes me think of Sheffield even if I didn't know the band were from there.

MP3: Breathe (A Little Deeper) - Blameless (right click)

She Said - Longpigs

A bit cliched to put this song on as it's the most well known but it was the song I would scream away at in The Leadmill with my friends. When I first heard this song I thought they would be a one hit wonder but Q Shoes assured me it was a quality album and he sure was right. I even got chance to see them play at the Octagon, they didn't disappoint. In fact I have only seen Pulp and Longpigs in Sheffield (I have seen a few of the others but sadly not in Sheffield).

MP3: She Said - Longpigs

Daydream In Blue - I Monster

A great summer song from two Sheffield based producers, Dean Honer and Jarrod Gosling. Dean Honer also being involved with The All Seeing I which leads me nicely on to...

MP3: Daydream In Blue - I Monster

Walk Like A Panther - The All Seeing I

With Tony Christie on vocals this song's lyrics were written by Jarvis Cocker.

MP3: Walk Like A Panther - The All Seeing I

Everything is Everything - Paul Heaton

A Sheffield United fan, Paul invited the staff at the club to see the Beautiful South at Sheffield Arena. I got to go as a plus one and it's the only time I've had a back stage pass at a gig probably not the most rock 'n' roll band to have a back stage pass for but I was grateful anyway.

This is from his solo album, not one to play in front of the kids. I guess you get used to swearing like that if you have to watch United week in week out.

MP3: Everything is Everything - Paul Heaton

Waster - Gomez

From the Machismo EP this is a great song. OK so you want to know what they've got to do with Sheffield? Well they met at the University of Sheffield and their manager lives there. Does that count. It was either that or I put a track on from ABC and I didn't fancy that.

MP3: Waster - Gomez

Pure New Pleasure Seeker - Moloko

I'm not really why Wikipedia class this band as from Sheffield. OK they met at a party in Sheffield but is that really enough to calls them from Sheffield. Well as it gives me the excuse to post the extended album version of this song I think it's right good.

MP3: Pure New Pleasure Seeker - Moloko

A good link is Sheffield Blog/ especially for the coverage of the Cooling Towers demolition.

Saturday, 9 August 2008

Album Review: Sigur Ros - með suð í eyrum við spilum endalaust

How do I start with this one? Jo Whiley (Radio 1 DJ) introduced them by saying if you like Radiohead, Elbow and Arcade Fire you may like these. Who are we to argue with the Dave Grohl obsessed blonde? Sigur Ros are a band who shirk the main stream by mainly recording in their native tongue, this wouldn't affect your sales much if you came from New Zealand but when you're from Iceland it's a brave move (the country not the freezer food shop). The result is an atmospheric album where you feel the music rather than understand it.

The album opens with the first single off the album, Gobbledigook, and swiftly followed by the upbeat Inní Mér Syngur Vitleysingur. Two upbeat songs, not dismililar to Arcade Fire's Rebellion (Lies). The tempo then slows and you think you have duped by the singles and it's actually going to be a slow relaxing album and then Festival starts.

3WTMS Exclusive

As Festival starts you can see the similarities to Radiohead that Jo Whiley was pointing to. Four minutes of just the lead singer singing nothing else (remember this is all in Icelandic) and then there's a pause. The guitars and beating drum comes in. Along with the strings the song builds and builds for the next six minutes. Here at What's Wrong With The Mainstream I can exclusively reveal this music will be used for the Olympic montage they do on the Beeb at the end of it all to show our medal heroes and our even more adored losers. When I finished listening to the song in my car I said to myself that's a f***ing good song. It's not very often a swear to myself nevermind talk to myself in the car. However, don't believe the hype, I played this to my other half and she was non too impressed so each to their own I guess.

The album then goes back to the slow paced atmospheric music, which while pleasant and well written it never again reaches the heights of Festival or the opening two songs. Don't let that put you off though, there are some beautiful pieces of music on the album it's just most of the time I like mine to be uplifting and fast tempoed. Overall it's a good addition to my CD collection and those of you who like Hoppipolla (previous successful Sigur Ros song) will find something to like in the songs I've listed above - please don't make me type them out again!

Festival - Sigur Ros

MP3: Festival - Sigur Ros