Monday, 19 February 2018

THE FIRST TIME WITH... MAVIS STAPLES

In case you missed Mavis Staples on BBC Radio 6 Music yesterday, here's the link to catch up. Matt Everitt talks to Mavis about the first time she was aware of music, sung with her family, at home, in church, in the studio and much more. 

As you'd expect from anything involving Mavis, it's a joyous hour -with an undercurrent of righteous indignation. Not only is "Bubbles" possessed with an amazing singing voice, she also owns the most captivating talking voice. Oh, and if Matt Everitt doesn't have the above photo framed at home I'd be very disappointed. Shamone. 

www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b09s3hy6

Saturday, 17 February 2018

BOY AZOOGA - 'LONER BOOGIE' (2018)


Boy Azooga is, according to press blurb, “the psych-flecked musical vehicle for Cardiff’s Davey Newington multifarious musical mission.” ‘Loner Boogie’ is two minutes of restless bees-trapped-in-a-tin garage rock and roll at odds with previous outing, the synthy ‘Face Behind Her Cigarette’, which makes Boy Azooga, at this early stage, intriguingly difficult to pin down. Debut album out in the summer.

THE LOVELY EGGS - 'WIGGY GIGGY' (2018)


Dressed in intergalactic superhero cloaks, made with some old curtains and a glue gun, and with faces adorned with stars and glitter, the Lovely Eggs last night transported the 100 Club to the centre of their cranky universe with a stupendous launch for new 45 ‘Wiggy Giggy’. Already destined to be one of the songs of 2018 it’s taken from the relentlessly brilliant This Is Eggland, officially released this week.

THE LIMBOOS - 'BLUE DREAM' (2018)


Taken from The Limboos’ second album, Limbootica!, which came out last year, this new video for ‘Blue Dream’ appeared last month. Effortlessly cool even in the Spanish sunshine. I wanna see this band so bad.

Sunday, 4 February 2018

KENNY LYNCH IN SWINGING LONDON, 1965


Here’s some interesting footage of Kenny Lynch going about his daily business in 1965. Bit of boxing training in the gym, a drive in his Rolls Royce through his old East End stomping ground, cutting a business deal in his sumptuous West End office, joshing with market traders in Berwick Street, serving behind the counter of his record shop in Soho’s Walker’s Court (this scene being the highlight and, incidentally, his shop was dead opposite the sandwich bar Harvey Gould spoke about in recent Harvey's Soho post) before putting the finishing touches to a new song. All before teatime.

Friday, 2 February 2018

THIS IS EGGLAND by THE LOVELY EGGS (2018)


Famed for their fiercely independent DIY ethos, the Lovely Eggs have for the first time employed outside help, bringing in producer Dave Fridmann (Flaming Lips/Mercury Rev) to help the primitive kitchen table punk duo create a humongous sounding feast.

Built on Holly’s thick wall of distortion and wah-wah, propelled by David’s motorik drumming and adorned with bleeps, squiggles and mad scientist electronics, this is Eggs-deluxe. Some earlier scatter-brained whimsy is gone, or harder to detect beneath the Sabbath riffing, but they’ve kept their pop hooks, revel in their irritated outsider status and use language like few others. ‘I’m a twit, I’m a nit, I’m a shit and every single little bit of you is getting to me’ (‘Dickhead’).

From the dazzling, rave-bursting ‘Hello, I Am Your Sun’ to the pulsating, space-glam ‘Wiggy Giggy’ and the bubbling, Pulp-on-steroids ‘Big Sea’, This Is Eggland is impressively focused, relentlessly brilliant and a must-go destination.

This Is Eggland by The Lovely Eggs is released on 23 February but order from thelovelyeggs.co.uk and you'll get it next week... The band play their biggest headline show to date at the Scala, London on 28 October 2018. 

This review first appeared in Shindig magazine. 

Sunday, 28 January 2018

JANUARY PLAYLIST


1.  Jimmy Nolen – ‘Strollin’ With Nolen’ (1956)
James Brown later had the savvy to employ Jimmy Nolen between 1965-1970 and it’s impossible to imagine that purple patch of JB’s output without Nolen’s chickenscratch guitar style. Back in ’56 he was already cutting loose.

2.  Herbie Hancock – ‘Watermelon Man’ (1962)
Herbs radically redid it on the squillion seller Head Hunters but it’s the finger snapping original cut on debut album, Takin’ Off, that gives ‘Watermelon Man’ its classic status.

3.  J.R. Bailey – ‘Love Won’t Wear Off (As The Years Wear On)’(1968)
The title sounds like the reverse of something George Jones might have written but this is classy soul from the Cadillacs singer cut under his own name for Calla Records.

4.  Herman George – ‘What Have You Got’ (1975)
Superb mid-70s soul.

5.  Laxton’s Superb – ‘Coming Round’ (1996)
Lost in the deluge of speculative Britpop signings, Laxton’s Superb were quickly dropped once their singles didn’t hit but the bright ‘Coming Round’ deserved better.

6.  Luke Haines – ‘The Incredible String Band’ (2016)
With a gentle strum, a children’s xylophone and a kazoo solo, Haines tells the tale of the Scottish psychedelic folksters who “were an unholy act, they sang like a couple of weasels, trapped in a sack.” This perversity, and songs about caterpillars, hedgehogs, death and a dude with no head obviously appeals to an outsider such as Haines. Now featured on the four-disc set, Luke Haines Is Alive and Well and Living in Buenos Aires.

7.  The Senior Service – ‘Slingshot’ (2018)
Anyone who’s followed Graham Day over the years will be aware of his penchant for groovy soundtracks to mind-movies so ‘Slingshot’ sounds how one would expect - the Shadows and Link Wray dressed as silver clad cowboys duelling in a dusty barroom situated in outer space while a Hammond organ catches fire in the corner.

8.  Daniel Romano – ‘Anyone’s Arms’ (2018)
While most spent January easing themselves into a new year Romano released two new albums under his own name and made available another recorded under his punky Ancient Shapes title. Nerveless (electric) and Human Touch (acoustic) have already been deleted – snooze and ya lose with Romano  – so many will have missed out on beauties like this catchy country-tinged pop rocker, which in a fair world would blare from every radio in the land.

9.  The Liminanas – ‘The Gift’ (2018)
The Liminanas’ blend of rattle and reverb rocked Rough Trade East this week during an in-store gig promoting Shadow People. For the second album in succession they include a track featuring the unmistakable contribution from Peter Hook and it’s a glorious one; all low-slung, sexy pop.

10.  Tara Milton – ‘Assassins’ (2018)
Former Five Thirty (okay, and Nubiles) man returns, at long last, with Serpentine Waltz, guiding the listener to the shadowy corners of the night. If I remember my William Burroughs correctly, ‘Assassins’ is a nod to Hassan-i-Sabbah who, in the 11th century, controlled an army of killers with drug addiction. The shuffling rhythm and spiralling trumpets one of many highlights on an impressive debut solo record.