Tuesday, 24 April 2007

My Augustine / I have given up

Well,who else could my latest post be about?News is rocketing around the internet about Patrick Wolf quiting music,and I'm sad to say that it has all come from the man himself.I love Patrick,I fell under his spell quickly and utterly when I heard 'Wind in the Wires' a few years ago and promptly booked tickets to one of his gigs,a gig which is up there amongst the greatest I've attended,and there have been a fair few.

I saw him live again a few months ago and things seemed to have changed substantially,suddenly he was dressed up like a pop star,playing less instruments and all before a crowd devoid of enthusiasm.Still I fell rather heavily for 'The Magic Position'after a little perseverance,all of which amounts to a feeling of loss after reading his au revoir letter this morning.It's been a while since a band I love have split so such feelings make me feel like a teenager,you never really expect solo artists to 'split' on you though,they seem like a safer bet,especially if they're at the peak of their success and talent,although that is probably a huge contributing factor I guess.

I don't have anything new to add to this debate but I just wanted to launch my thoughts into cyber space.I love Patrick's songs and it's a great shame if industry bullshit and speculation has lead to him retreating from music entirely,as more visionaries of this type are badly needed.

Monday, 23 April 2007

A little worn around the edges

I haven't updated here for a while as I haven't had any thrilling musical outpourings to share.Things are currently quiet as far as gigs go and impressive new albums have been scarce.(By new I mean new additions to my collection as opposed to just released albums).

My view on Bright Eyes 'Cassadaga'is a lacklustre one really.I had high expectations despite the slight dissapointment of the 'Four Winds' EP but sadly it hasn't delivered.I want to return and give it another chance but am afraid I'll think even less if I do so.It's sad as alt-country is my thing and I've been a Bright Eyes appreciator for many a year so I really didn't see this coming,which leaves me somewhat creastfallen.It's only music I hear you say,well,if that is your opinion I'm afraid you're perusing the wrong blog entirely.I want to feel umbilicaly connected to music,and the right songs and artists create that type of connection,for me Bright Eyes previous albums have hit me like a train,whereas 'Cassadaga'came in,politely introduced itself and then faded into the background.My main criticism would be that it all seems rather abstract and I miss the guts being exposed,confessional lyrics of old.Oh well,I shall dust myself off and get back out there,as music is something I just cannot give up on,no matter how many times it fails me.There is still the new Ryan Adams record to anticipate after all,not to mention the suitably random album going by the name of 'Icky Thump'.

Perhaps as a result of recent letdowns I've been investigating some artists from my musical past,namely Ash,a band I was fond of 'back in the day'but haven't dedicated much time to of late.I'd forgotten/repressed how many truly great songs they had,'A Life Less Ordinary'will always be my particular favourite.I've heard a couple of songs from their forthcoming album too and they sound like the Ash of old,so I may well invest in the record.There's always hope then I suppose,and the new Manics stuff is sounding pretty damn good,a huge surprise as far as I'm concerned.

Tuesday, 3 April 2007

Bastards of Young

Perhaps by this stage in my life I should be beyond posting lyrics I relate to online,but this song is helping me out a lot at the moment,and the lyrics are highly relevant to anyone having the quarter-life crisis,so I thought I would share them.

The Replacements-Bastards of Young

God, what a mess, on the ladder of success
Where you take one step and miss the whole first rung
Dreams unfulfilled, graduate unskilled
It beats pickin' cotton and waitin' to be forgotten
We are the sons of no one, bastards of young
We are the sons of no one, bastards of young
The daughters and the sons
Clean your baby womb, trash that baby boom
Elvis in the ground, there'll ain't no beer tonight
Income tax deduction, what a hell of a function
It beats pickin' cotton and waitin' to be forgotten

We are the sons of no one, bastards of young
We are the sons of no one, bastards of young
The daughters and the son
Unwillingness to claim us, ya got no war to name us
The ones who love us best are the ones we'll lay to rest
And visit their graves on holidays at best
The ones who love us least are the ones we'll die to please
If it's any consolation, I don't begin to understand them
We are the sons of no one, bastards of young
We are the sons of no one, bastards of youngThe daughters and the sons
Young...take it, it's yours...

If I could talk I'd tell you

I haven't updated this for a while as I haven't been feeling very eloquent recently,my head is too clouded with thoughts and feels very woolly at the moment.Last week was spent in something of a gigs frenzy so that is worth commenting upon.I find it hard to share my thoughts on live music though as I find such things fleeting and hard to describe.I will at least mention who I saw.My first two attempts at live reviews happened last week courtesy of The Shins and Polly Paulusma.I saw The Shins live last year and enjoyed them a lot,but this time there was no spark for me at all.The songs didn't inspire me and from the moment the gig began I was itching to get out of there.The reason for this reaction may be circumstantial as I'd had a pretty long and quite stressful day leading up to the gig,but overall it was a big letdown with few lasting impressions.The review was a hard one to write as a result too.Thankfully Polly was a more vibrant gig meaning the words for the review danced across the page for me.Now I am impatient for her new album and hope I can get an advance copy.

The most notable event of last week though was seeing Damien Rice.I am rather besotted with his music and had been looking forward to the gig massively since I booked the tickets way back in October.Sometimes such experiences can be crushing in their dissapointment but this wasn't at all.I watched in awe and every second was amazing.His banter was non-existent so the songs came thick and fast in an onslaught of wonder.Greedy as I am I left incredibly thankful I booked tickets for his next tour a few months ago,obviously very assured that he would be worth repeated viewing.

Elsewhere I have been listening to the new Laura Veirs record.I'm a big fan of hers and the album certainly has the likeability factor so far,I'm not sure if it will progress beyond that though.I also visited Fopp again,I should have learnt the error of that particular decision by now.This time I left with Richmond Fontaine's 'Post to Wire' and Calexico's 'Garden Ruin', and very nice they are too.Perhaps I will share further thoughts on those albums after repeated listens,but for now I am absorbed with trying to determine my top 10 albums based on lyrics alone,which a friend asked me to come up with.As soon as it is determined I will post the list here,exciting eh?