Won’t You Tell Your Dad Get Off My Back? Tell Him What We Said ‘Bout Paint It Black.

alex

 

Nobody’s Listening. No.45. 26.9.16.

 

Hullo. Well, Autumn has finally reared its golden and brown head and Summer is officially dead. Sure, it’s a pretty season, but probably the dullest if you ask me. Here at NL we’ll try and keep the sunshine smiles firmly planted on your collective mush with tracks to help you forget that the icy grip of Winter is a growing, horrible reality.

We’ve a lot to get through this week including possibly my favourite track of the decade hardly anyone referred to as ‘The Noughties’, and of Course, Paul D’Cruz is back with his Pick Of The Week. As I type, I haven’t yet listened to his selection this week, but I’m confident my very good friend, bandmate and manufacturer of premium quality yoghurt based drinks has lived up to his usual excellent standards.

Alrighty then. Countdown is progressing..

 

Track 1. Watch The Sunrise by Big Star.

I’m amazed it’s took forty five editions of NL for this band to make their debut. I could be wrong but I can’t be arsed to check through and see if they’ve been included before now. Anyway, here they are, probably the biggest cult band of all time with a track from their debut, 1972’s ‘#1 Record’. Leader, and cover star Alex Chilton, for that be him up the top there, first came to my attention through The Box Tops, the sixties band he fronted as a teenager. Their most famous song, ‘The Letter’ was the song I manhandled on Karaoke the night I wooed the current Mrs Orley way back in 1998. She has no recollection of this, but I did. Thanks to its inclusion on the Minions movie soundtrack, it is now a firm favourite of my 5 year old son and he often requests I play and sing it while he takes his bath. I happily oblige and he seems to like it, joining in on the chorus. I digress, this is lovely and if you’re one of the people who hasn’t yet investigated one of the best kept secrets of the seventies, I urge you to seek out their back catalogue forthwith.

 

Track 2. Pretty Please by The Triplett Twins.

Leon and Levi Triplett were twin brothers from the Chicago projects who were part of the Curtis Mayfield and Eddie Thomas label Curtom Records. This 1970 single is a delicious pop-soul confection that has a smashing Hammond bubbling underneath. If it doesn’t make you smile at least once in its two minute running time then may I suggest you consult a GP, there may be a serious underlying condition.

 

Track 3. Why Don’t You Put Your Trust In Me by The 4th Coming.

We stay soulful but move south for our next track from short lived L.A funk outfit The 4th Coming. This comes from a compilation released just last year and is an untapped goldmine of potential samples for those of that particular bent. Always get clearance though and don’t say I pointed you in the direction of this rare nugget. I could do without any lawsuits ta very much.

 

Track 4. Easy To Forget by Drugdealer, Ariel Pink.

We leave the seventies behind for our next, brand spanking new selection. Not too far behind mind. This has a lovely relaxed sunshine feel that wouldn’t be out of place on a forgotten Californian beach-band album from that very era. NL favourite Ariel Pink provides the singing and reigns in his usual trippy vocal for a pretty straightforward take. Drugdealer is the alias of Michael Collins who also records under the RUN DMT and Salvia Plath monikers, his new LP released this week also has guest turn from another NL alumni,  Mac Demarco.

 

Track 5.  A Little Bit Of Lovin’ by Laurice.

A true one-off, Laurice Marshall was a session singer at Abbey Road studios in the sixties before going on to invent punk with his 1973 band ‘Grudge’ and their classic ‘When Christine Comes Around/I’m Gonna Smash Your Face In’. He later emigrated to Canada from his native U.K., becoming a disco diva with a global following. Laurice is still going strong  today, releasing records and remaining staunchly involved in Gay activism. This comes from last years compilation, ‘The Best Of Laurice Part 2.’ and has a cracking fuzz bass and guitar backing.

 

Track 6. Dead Prudence by The Sandwitches.

Grace Cooper, Heidi Alexander and Roxanne Young make up San Francisco three piece The Sandwitches. This track is not, as the youtube description states, a Beatles cover but an original slice of slowcore that featured on their LP release from last year ‘Our Toast’. Paced elegance that has a lazy, Mazzy Star quality to it

 

Track 7. Torre Bermeja by Andrés Segovia.

A touch of class next with the famous Spanish guitar virtuoso. This piece was composed for piano by Isaac Albéniz but has become an important work for classical guitar. Few interpretations can compare to the grandaddy of them all though and the video below illustrates perfectly his mastery of the instrument he played for eighty odd years.

Track 8. Star Revue by Warren Lee.

A complete change of pace next with an r’n’b stomper. This slab of New Orleans Southern soul courtesy of NL favourite, the legendary Allen Toussaint, name-checks Wilson Pickett, Otis Redding, Solomon Burk and Warren himself, ‘The Mighty King Lee’. Push back the furniture, roll up the rug and shake that bad ass.

Track 9. Things We Said Today by The London Jazz Four.

Beatles covers were by no means a rarity back in the day. One way to guarantee a moderately successful hit rekkid was to have a stab at a fab four song, put a slightly different spin on it and watch the money and plaudits roll in. In 1967 The London Jazz Four released a full LP of Lennon/McCartney numbers, all presented in their Modern Jazz quartet style and sold the sum total of sod all. To be fair, they’re quite imaginative takes with some of the tracks barely recognisable as Wackers’ songs, cf their trippy take on, in my opinion, the greatest b-side of all time, ‘Rain’. The track I’ve plumped for is their version of the Macca fronted ‘A Hard Days Night’ flip side. Check out that vibes break. Nice.

Track 10. I’m Trying by Harriet.

****PAULO’S PICK OF THE WEEK****

As I said up the top there, I’m giving this next track its debut spin as I write. Immediate impressions suggest an uncanny likeness to one of my favourite acts of recent years, The Shins. The lead singer has a tone so similar to James Mercer that if I didn’t know otherwise, I would swear it was him. This is by no means a bad thing. Nice find gatito, nice find.

Track 11. Bros by Panda Bear.

And so to the track I alluded to in this weeks introduction. As part of Animal Collective, Noah Lennox aka Panda Bear always provided my favourite tracks on their albums, his voice being far more palatable than the gruff delivery of Avey Tare. When ‘Person Pitch’, his third solo LP dropped in 2007 I was smitten from the first listen. The first two tracks, ‘Comfy In Nautica’ and ‘Take Pills’ had already confirmed this was potentialy the album of the decade. By the time ‘Bros’ had run it’s 12 glorious minutes I was convinced that we had something very special indeed. Not a second is wasted, the samples used all combining to something greater than the sum of their parts. As I mentioned up the top there it remains, for me, the high point of his career and a track I never tire of no matter how many times I’ve heard it. If you’re experiencing it for the first time, I envy You. If not, take the time to listen to it again, nearly ten years after its release and marvel at its groundbreaking majesty. Many copyists followed, few matched, none bettered. This is solid gold.

Track 12. Todo Irá Mejor by Tapi.

How do you follow that? Well you can’t really can you? So here’s a 1977 single that I have no information on whatsoever. I found it through a spotify crate digging compilation and it has lots I like. I like the trumpet break around the 1m 50s mark. I like the string backing and the piano that thumps the song along. I like it all, so it’s in.

Track 13. Paper Ships by Wilsen.

Now I’m not entirely certain if we’ve featured this track before. It’s hard to not repeat oneself after 45 playlists and 900 tracks so I’m sure You’ll forgive me if I have. I definitely don’t recall writing about it so maybe not. Either way it’s quite, quite lovely and warrants another listen. That is, if you haven’t heard it before, or even if you have. Just bloody go with it. Taken from their 2014 mini LP ‘Sirens’ this is the project of one Tamsin Wilson, born in the UK, raised in Canada and currently resident of Brooklyn. Beautiful, dreamy folk with Honeyed vocals.

Track 14. Daughter by Pearl Jam.

I wasn’t entirely enamored by Pearl Jam after hearing their debut LP ‘Ten’. Something about the polished production and over earnest delivery of Eddie Vedder didn’t sit quite right with me. It wasn’t until I heard this track from their sophomore release ‘Vs’ that I began to sit up and take notice, with a more honest and raw sound, it made a bit more sense. The whole album is great incidentally, with tracks like ‘Dissident’, ‘Go’ and ‘Elderly Woman Behind The Counter In A Small Town’ all standouts. I quickly forgot about them soon after when my head was turned by those homegrown lads with guitars, haircuts and sixties obsessions that swept away any American invaders in a Britpop tsunami. I’m sure they went on to produce music of equal greatness, if you’d like to point me in the direction of anything to match the quality of the tracks mentioned, my ears are always open.

Track 15. Indian Summer by Eugenius.

We stay in the early nineties and the grunge soaked influence of Seattle. In fact it’s a sort of reverse influence as Eugene Kelly and his former band The Vaselines were a touchstone for a host of acts from the North West of The U.S. Kurt Cobain himself was a massive fan and invited Kelly’s new band, ‘Captain America’ to support them on Nirvana’s UK tour in the winter of 1991. I was there and they were smashing. Marvel comics didn’t take too kindly to the band’s name however, and insisted Kelly cease and desist using their all American superhero’s handle forthwith. After a swift rethink, C.A. became Eugenius and released their debut LP ‘Oomalama’ from which this cover of lo-fi indie legends ‘Beat Happening’ comes.

Track 16. It’s All Right With Me by Erroll Garner.

Garner was a musician who had a true talent for the piano. Learning to play from ear at just three years old, he never learned to read music throughout his long career. This didn’t stop him becoming one of the most respected jazz pianists of the golden age and he went on to release dozens of albums including 1955’s live LP ‘Concert By The Sea’, from which this Cole Porter classic is lifted. Despite a slightly out of tune Joanna and poor recording equipment, the record is a classic and showcases Garner’s trio at the height of their powers.

Track 17. Everyone’s A VIP To Someone by The Go! Team.

‘Thunder Lightning Strike’ was a breath of fresh air when it arrived twelve years ago. The debut album from the Brighton collective was a sample heavy joy and one of those records which seemed to capture the essence of Summer perfectly. This instrumental built around Fred Neil’s ‘Midnight Cowboy’ and Laura Nyro’s ‘Stoned Soul Picnic’ also benefits from the absence of their vocalist MC Ninja whose chanting became a tad tiresome all too quickly.

Track 18. Who’s Making Love by Lou Donaldson.

This is the lead track from saxophonist Donaldson’s 1969 Blue Note release ‘Hot Dog’. The main man himself doesn’t make an appearance until half way through the track, giving each of his band a chance to shine, in particular Charles Earland who provides some stellar Hammond rolls. Easy, funky souly goodness right here, fill your boots and shake your stuff.

Track 19. Forever by Mercy.

The follow-up single to their 1969 smash ‘Love Can Make You Happy’, this had been a hit for The Little Dippers nine years previously. Mercy were a band made up mainly of session vocalists from Florida and had little success after this went gold but this is an easy listening gem which is far too easy to dismiss as candyfloss guff when compared to the early heavy rock releases which were favoured at the time. It’s a pure treat for the ears with its gentle arrangement and soaring female vocal. The band are still touring today with band leader Jack Sigler Jr the only original member.

Track 20. Baby Baby All The Time by The Superbs.

We travel back to 1964 for our soul slowie closer this week and a vocal harmony group who hailed from Los Angeles. Fronted on this occasion by their female soprano Eleanor ‘Punkin’ Green who gives a superb performance, particularly on the recorded version included on the playlist. I’ve posted their appearance on American Band Stand below for historical interest, but listen to the spoken opening line on the single version, ‘There Are Eight Million Stories In The Big City, This Is Mine’ it sets up this doo-wop heartbreaker perfectly.

Blimey, I went on a bit there didn’t I? Hope you managed to make it to the end. Of course, the playlist rumbles on next week with Issue #46 and twenty more selections which will hopefully inform, educate and entertain.

If you haven’t already, please join the official playlist facebook page Here! where our members have been sharing some absolute beauties as of late. Join in and share yours too. We don’t bite.

I’ll see you next week, same time and place.

Until then, take good care of it babe.

Andrew Orley.

Don’t You Know That Crew Cuts And Trainers Are Out Again?

c__data_users_defapps_windows-phone_appdata_internetexplorer_temp_saved-images_stetienne

Nobody’s Listening. No.44. 19.9.16.

 

Hullo. Once again, an NL with a massive readership is followed by mediocre viewing figures the next week. Funny old business this blogging carry on. We’ll keep plugging away though. As I’ve said many times before, if just one person reads the blog or listens to one track from the playlist, then it’s job done. I’ve got nothing better to do anyway, so I’ll keep on trucking even if it means playing to an empty room!

Nobody’s Listening numbero forty four-o is the usual aural delight. My very good friend, bandmate and Jamaican dancehall aficionado Paul D’Cruz is here of course with his Pick Of The Week. This time around he’s gone for a band who I forget exist from time to time, but it’s always a delight when I reacquaint myself with their work.

Alright then, here we go round the mulberry bush..

 

Track 1. Getaway Tonight by Opossom.

For the second week running, we kick off with a Kiwi band. Kody Nielsen is the brother of Unknown Mortal Orchestra frontman Ruban and his brand of dreamy pop isn’t a million miles away from his sibling’s band. This is from the 2012 debut LP ‘Electric Hawaii’.  It’s great fun with a frantic tempo and a chorus that sets up camp in your brain then refuses to budge for days.

 

Track 2. Nothing Can Stop Us  by Saint Etienne.

This was the third single from Bob Stanley and Pete Wiggs’ retro dance band and the first to feature guest vocalist Sarah Cracknell who went on to become the third member of this weeks cover stars soon after. Built around a looped sample from Dusty Springfield’s ‘I Can’t Wait Until I See My Baby’s Face’, this is a sunheeine indie-pop classic that is an unbelievable 26 years old. I met Bob Stanley at a book signing once, he was a thoroughly decent bloke, smiling politely as I recounted my love for ABBA and his brilliant tome ‘Yeah Yeah Yeah’, probably the best book about popular music I’ve ever read. Get it.

 

Track 3. M&M’s by Black Heat.

Taken from their second Atlantic LP, 1974’s ‘No Time To Burn’, this is a proper funk workout which after an almost free-jazz breakdown at around the four minute mark before it locks back into a solid groove. It’s an ideal backing for chucking those final few sausages of the summer on the grill while dancing around your garden one last time.

 

Track 4. There Is No There by The Books.

****PAULO’S PICK OF THE WEEK****

Masters of collage, The Books released four albums in their 13 year career from 1999-2012. Paul has gone for a track from the second of those four, 2003’s ‘The Lemon Of Pink’ and it’s a typically spliced up mix of folk instruments, electronic bleeps and beats and sampled speech. This duo are true originals, and are more than worthy of your investigation. May I suggest you begin with their swansong, 2012’s ‘The Way Out’ and work whichever way the wind takes you from there. Treasures await.

 

Track 5. Yahan Nahin Kahoongi by Charanjit Singh.

We featured a track from Singh’s seminal proto acid house LP ‘Ten Ragas To A Disco Beat’ a while back now and since then I have gone back and sampled some of the hundreds of film soundtracks he recorded during his long career. This one begins with a twangy Beatles-esque guitar before a primitive Joe Meek-y synth takes over. I can gather no info as to which film it’s from or when it was recorded, but I’ll hazard a guess at a mid seventies Bollywood cowboy epic. No video, unsurprisingly.

 

Track 6 For One Night Only by King Creosote.

I wouldn’t say I vociferously praise Kenny Anderson’s work. He’s released over forty albums and there always seems to be a fair amount of filler in his vast catalogue, but every now and then he stops me in my tracks with a release that makes you realise he’s one of those artists that just has to get the music out. This track was part of his soundtrack to the archive documentary ‘From Scotland With Love’, released in 2014. It’s a swooping fast paced affair recounting the rare occasions his forefathers would enjoy a big night out, an infrequent occurrence in those austere days. Backed by some stunning images, he captures the moment perfectly.

 

Track 7. Days by Cool Ghouls.

This quartet from San Francisco released their third LP last month from which this is the lead track. As I write, I’m presently in an air conditioned hotel room on the hottest September day for fifty years, trapped in a nightshift induced zombie like state. This song with its piano and acoustic stylings is making perfect sense right now.

 

Track 8. Samba De Uma Nota Só by João Gilberto.

I’ve recently been attempting (and failing spectacularly) to learn bossa guitar. I’m convinced Brazilians are all born with an extra digit that enables them to negotiate a fret-board with ease, picking off jazz chords as if they were part of their genetic make up. Don’t be fooled by the lyric, this is not ‘Just a little samba / Built upon a single note’. It’s a one way ticket to frustration and possible arthritis. Beautiful stuff from one of the fathers of B.N but.

Track 9. Viva Tirado by El Chicano.

This instrumental is from the 1970 debut LP of the same name. A jazz-soul cover of Gerald Wilson’s original song about a bullfighter. Odious subject matter yes, but these Mexican Californians captured pure sunshine on this track. It’s almost stirring me to venture outside and enjoy this late summer heatwave. But I’m in Slough, so I won’t.

Track 10. Apple Tree by Hintermass.

Unlike our previous three summer infused tracks, our next selection has a distinct Autumnal feel to it. Taken from the bands debut LP released earlier this year, Hintermass is the current project of our old friends Ghost Box recording artists Jon Brooks (The Advisory Circle) and Tim Felton (formerly of Broadcast and Seeland). More pop based than their previous work, this still has a haunting melancholia to it more in line with their usual offerings.

Track 11. Mama Didn’t Lie by Jan Bradley.

This next track was penned by the late, great Curtis Mayfield who discovered Ms Bradley in the mid sixties. After a dispute with Chess records, their partnership was dissolved and Curtis moved on up (ahem) to greater things while Jan released a few more singles before retiring to raise a family in the early seventies.

Track 12. Keep Your Mind Open by Kaleidoscope.

Californian psych-folk troupe Kaleidoscope released four albums at the arse end of the sixties, this track is cribbed from the debut, 1967’s ‘Side Trips’. With their Middle Eastern flavours, Kaleidoscope were one of the progenitors of World Music and also influenced Led Zeppelin, guitarist David Lindley often taking a bow to his plank a few years before Jimmy Page did the same.

Track 13. A Momentary Taste Of Being by James Blackshaw.

As a, by my own admission, quite poor guitarist, I’m quite conscious of my breathing when recording anything. This doesn’t seem to bother Blackshaw who’s nasal inhales and exhales are quite prominent on this beautiful piece. I can only surmise they were left in post production to add an air of authenticity. Don’t focus on that though, just admire his mastery of the instrument which has earned comparisons to such greats as Bert Jansch, Robbie Basho, John Fahey, Jack Rose, and Leo Kottke. James announced that his show at Hastings last month would be his last, taking an indefinite hiatus. Shame, as I’ve only just bloody discovered him.

Track 14. Gangster Boogie by Chicago Gangsters.

This band of four brothers originally hailed from Ohio but after signing to Chicago label Gold Plate, they incorporated their adopted city’s name into the band. This 1975 track became a massively popular sample item for hip-hoppers and breakbeat aficionados, most prominently appearing on L.L. Cool J’s hit ‘Mama Said Knock You Out’.

Track 15. Di Enw by Sidan.

We remain in 1975 for our next track and stay relatively funky, however, we travel a few thousand miles east of Chicago to the valleys and this all female Welsh five piece. Featured on the excellently titled Finders Keepers compilation from about ten years back, ‘Welsh Rare-Beat’.

Track 16. Ku Mi Da Hankan by The Elcados.

It’s been a while since we featured something from the excellent Soundway compilations so here’s some premium afro-psych from Nigeria. There’s precious little information regarding The Elcados on the interweb. What I can tell you is the lead singer and guitarist is called Frank and he rules this early seventies curio.

Track 17. Stone Folk by The Advancement.

This next piece comes from the sole 1969 LP release of Californian band The Advancement. Formed by Bassist Louis Kabok and drummer Hal Gordon, they fused elements of jazz, psychedelia and hard rock and came up with some impressive proto-prog.

Track 18. Gloomy Sunday by Ricky Nelson.

This notorious song was composed by Hungarian pianist and composer Rezső Seress and published in 1933. Covered by countless artists, it’s most famous rendition is probably Billie Holiday’s take which was banned by the BBC until 2002. The reason behind its notoriety is the urban legend attached to it’s reputation as a ‘Suicide song’, thought to have been the last song listened to by a number of souls who had taken their own life. These reports were studied and found to be completely unsubstantiated. Still, it’s a strange choice for the then eighteen year old teen idol to tackle, although there was a fad for teenage tragedy songs at the time, cf ‘Tell Laura I Love Her’ et al. There is a sad and relevant coda, the songs composer Seress took his own life in 1968.

Track 19. In The Rounds by Night Moves.

When this band surfaced in 2012,comparisons were made to The Flaming Lips and Mercury Rev. This does them a disservice, as excellent as those bands are, Night Moves have a sound of their own. This from that years LP release, ‘Coloured Emotions’ has a beauty all of its own. Lead singer and guitarist John Pelant has an aching falsetto that transcends their ‘Freak Folk'(lazy label, Pitchfork) tag.

Track 20. My Adorable One by James & Bobby Purify.

Soul slowie closer time and a previously unreleased gem from Cousins James and Bobby Purify. This particular choice was initially going to be their big hit ‘I’m Your Puppet’ but after taking the time to listen to some of their lesser known tracks, I stumbled across this hidden gem and had to share it. You’re very welcome.

 

There you go, twenty tracks to move you, lose you and groove you. Join us again next week for issue number 45 but in the mean time, please join in the fun at our dedicated facebook page Here where you can share your own top pop (or whatever genre) picks. See you next time.

 

Until then, wear your love like heaven.

 

Andrew Orley.

Ring All The Bells, Sing And Tell The People That Be Everywhere That The Flower Has Come.

KIS_01_minnie_riperton-620x340

Nobody’s Listening. No 43. 12.9.16.

Hullo. Last weeks bloglist turned out to be the most popular so far with our biggest ever number of views and shares. Not sure why that was, although as I said last week it was one of my favourites, maybe we share the same tastes..It’s a possibility that the nights drawing in has prompted people to cabin up and seek non-weather dependent activities. Who knows? You’re an unpredictable lot, but I love you and I’d like to take this opportunity to thank each and everyone of you for taking the time out to listen, read, like and share. Massive Ta’s all round.

On to business then. Once more this weeks picks are a cornucopia of eclectic choices, with a bit of an easy going theme. There’s some unexpected turns to shake  you out of your comfort zone though, be warned!

And of course, Paulo returns once more with his pick of the week. My very good friend, bandmate and owner of the original Posh Paws from Multicoloured Swap Shop makes his debut as the selector of our traditional ‘Soul Slowie Closer’, and it’s a stone cold classic.

Well then, c’mon  everybody!

Track 1. Anything Could Happen by The Clean.

We begin in New Zealand and one of the acts who pioneered ‘The Dunedin Sound’, a style which sprang forth in the university city of Dunedin in the early eighties. Jangly guitars, stripped back bass and drums and a focus on sixties songwriting were the order of the day and a whole host of bands adopted this blueprint. Pavement cited the movement as a major influence and you don’t have to listen too carefully to hear their early work in this 1982 EP track from one of the biggest names on the scene.

Track 2. Real Bad Lookin’ by Alex Cameron.

Just a small leap over the Tasman sea for our next selection this week, Sydney born Alex Cameron. This comes from his 2015 debut defeatedly titled ‘Jumping The Shark’ in which Cameron adopts the personae of a synthpop backed cabaret singer. It’s really a lot better than it sounds. While there’s some smiles to be had, particularly in the lyric, there’s also a melancholic sadness infused in his music. Check out the live performance below.

Track 3. Oh By The Way by Minnie Riperton.

Cover star time with a track from Ms Riperton’s 1970 debut LP ‘Come To My Garden’. The album was Minnie’s calling card after her work with late sixties experimental funk-soul outfit Rotary Connection. With lush production and orchestration courtesy of Charles Stepney, the songwriting partner of her soon to be husband Richard Rudolph, the LP is a soft soul masterpiece and was the perfect platform for her multi octave range.

Track 4. Lady Sunshine by Tamam Shud.

We’re back in the Antipodes for our next cut and Australian psychedelic rock outfit Tamam Shud. This track comes from their 1969 debut LP ‘Evolution’ and features some stellar lead guitar from Alex ‘Zac’ Zytnik who would soon leave the band to be replaced by the no less talented 15 year old prodigy Tim Zane. The band recently reformed and released their fourth album earlier this year.

Track 5. If I Had My Way by Boscoe.

Jazz funk from Chicago with a conscience, this act only managed to cut one self titled LP in 1973. Refusing to compromise their sound for the majors, they self released their debut to an indifferent world. Fortunately, in these ‘enlightened’ times we can unearth these forgotten treasures and give them back the voice they were denied in an over saturated era.

Track 6. The Nightmare Of J.B. Stanislas by Nick Garrie.

Ripon born Nick Garrie is renowned in psychedelic collectors’ circles for his 1970 debut, The Nightmare of J.B. Stanislas, a Baroque pop masterpiece effectively buried by nonexistent distribution and promotion which forced Garrie to give up on the music business. The LP eventually gained its rightful praise in the mid 2000’s when it was reissued as a CD and attracted a host of contemporary artists with its epic vision. Nick finally performed the work in its entirety complete with string section at the Primavera festival in Spain in 2012 to a rapturuos reception. I do love a happy ending.

Track 7. Easy Evil by Tony Orlando, The Dawn.

Yes, ‘Tie A Yellow Ribbon’ Tony Orlando and The Dawn. Wait though! This is a joy, with more than a nod to ‘Spooky’ Joyce Vincent gives a classy lead vocal performance that should banish any visions of the absent Orlando poncing about in a flared suit and ‘tache.

Track 8. Star Control by Dollar.

Keen followers of Nobody’s Listening will note that this is the second appearance from early eighties chart botherers and latter day reality show whores David And Theresa. Don’t run away! You trusted me with Tony Orlando above so why not take a punt on this vocoder led slice of interstellar nuttiness from their 1979 LP ‘Shooting Star’. Honestly, if this was released by an artist of a venerated stature it would be deemed a classic. I was tempted to bill it as the work of some mid seventies German electro pioneer with the name of Hans Vooorsbrucht or something, just to see if it gained the kudos it deserves.

Track 9. Southern Nights by Allen Toussaint.

To my knowledge, this is the first time that a song has made a second appearance on NL. It’s first bow was earlier this year when we featured Glen Campbells 1977 chart topping version of Toussaints signature tune. It’s only right that this original version should have an outing too, and with its almost oriental stylings, it’s different enough from the rhinestone cowboy’s take to warrant inclusion this week.

Track 10. Far Away Blue by David McCallum.

A sixties instrumental segue next, beginning with the erstwhile Man from U.N.C.L.E and a track from one of four albums he made for Capitol during that decade. McCallum is a classically trained musician and along with arranger David Axelrod he capitalised on his acting success with LP’s featuring interpretations of hits of the day. This, however, is an original composition and has some neat touches and wonderful, warm brass that has more than air of Brian Wilsons Pet Sounds arrangements. No vid..

Track 11. Bella Dalena by The Marketts.

An instrumental band from Hollywood, The Marketts were essentially Michael Z. Gordon and assembled session Musicians including legendary sticks-man Hal Blaine. They had a string of surf instrumental hits but still took the time to produce romantic smoochy numbers such as this, the b-side to their 1963 million selling smash ‘Out Of Limits’.

Track 12. Angel Woman by Andrew Gold.

A few weeks back, I mentioned my fondness for late seventies singer songwriters and their soft, nonthreatening craft. I’ve since found out that this genre has recently been labelled ‘Yacht Rock’, a description that sits a bit uneasy with me, as did the ‘Guilty Pleasures’ tag that surfaced in the nineties. These are just well made,well produced love songs that are very much of their time but timeless all the same. Here’s the much missed Andrew Gold with a short cut from his sophomore LP ‘What’s Wrong with This Picture?’ released in 1976.

Track 13. Queen Of Hearts by Fucked up.

Ok, ready for some noise? It’s good, melodic noise!. Canadian hardcore band Fucked Up took the unusual step of releasing a rock opera in 2011, the marvellous ‘David Comes To Life’, an 18 song epic in four acts. This was the first release from said double album and was accompanied by the video below which features a children choir singing the song, with the boys singing Damien Abraham’s part while the girls sing guest vocalist Madeline Follin’s part. Incendiary stuff. If it doesn’t prompt you to seek out and listen to the full opus then that loss is entirely yours.

Track 14. Let’s Do It Again by The Parrots.

Heavenly recordings have always had an excellent ear for talent and their latest signing is no exception. Madrid three piece The Parrots have an infectious quality to their sixties garage influenced rock and this, their new single, gives you that nagging feeling that You’ve heard it somewhere before. Always a good sign in my book. Judge for yourselves below…

Track 15. Strangers by Lotus Plaza.

Lotus Plaza is the solo project of Deerhunter guitarist Lockett Pundt and this was the lead single from his second LP under that name released in 2012. A slack, lead vocal is complimented by the ringing guitar style he employs to great effect with his main band, all propped up by a military drum backing played on a child’s kit bought from a thrift store.

Track 16. Why (Am I Treated So Bad?) by The Sweet Inspirations.

This civil rights song originally recorded by The Staples Singers has been covered by many artists, James Brown and Cannonball Adderley to name but two. This version from girl group the sweet inspirations turns it around into a wronged woman’s lament. That’s Cissy Houston (Whitney’s ma) you can hear knocking out the wonderful soprano part.

Track 17. Little Mohee by John Jacob Niles.

A collector and transcriber of traditional Appalachian folk music, Niles was influential to the American folk revival scene of the fifties and sixties. This recording from 1953 features Niles’ trademark very high falsetto backed by his favoured instrument, the dulcimer.

Track 18. Give ‘Em Love by The Soul Children.

This Stax boy/girl band were put together by Isaac Hayes and David Porter to replace Sam And Dave who the label had recently lost to Atlantic Records. This 1968 single was the first fruits and is a punchy, brassy soul number which probably would have been recorded by S&D had their contract not expired. A few follow up singles gained moderate success and the group managed to release a further seven LP’s during the seventies before eventually winding up in 1979.

Track 19. Exodus by De La Soul.

The closing track from their ninth LP released just last week ‘And The Anonymous Nobody…’ Here we find our heroes in reflective mood. Beginning with an acoustic guitar noodling gently before ending with a short swell of strings and the payoff lines Saviors? Heroes? Nah/ Just common contributors/ Hoping that what we create/ Inspires you to selflessly challenge and contribute/ Sincerely, anonymously, nobody.’ Gorgeous stuff.

Track 20. Smoke Gets In Your Eyes by The Platters.

****PAULO’S PICK OF THE WEEK****

Here’s Paul to close this weeks proceedings with a soul slowie closer. Everyone should be familiar with this classic Jerome Kern cover released in 1958. If you’ve never experienced a chill run up your spine when Tony Williams’s voice slightly cracks at the two minute mark with that glorious ‘Oooh-Oh-oh-oh’ then I seriously doubt you are in possession of a functioning heart or soul.

 

Okaaaay then. That’s it for this weeks feast of fun. Hope you’ve enjoyed it. If you have, tell your friends and do the usual sharing ting on soshul meeja. If you haven’t, get stuffed. Don’t forget to join our Facebook page Here and get a daily dose of non-playlist tracks plus You can also post your own top pop picks in a friendly environment where anything goes. We’ve had some excellent shares lately and that’s what it’s all about, don’t be shy!

I’ll see you at the same time, same place next week for twenty more slices of old, new, borrowed and blue.

Until then, fight the power.

Andrew Orley.

Hide Your Horses, Hold Your Tongue, Hang The Rich And Spare The Young.

lisa-hannigan-passenger

Nobody’s Listening. No.42. 5.9.16.

Hullo. This weeks playlist was initially planned as an epic. I came up with the idea to compile twenty tracks all over ten minutes in length but in reality this would have proved to be an endurance test even I would have found hard to stomach.  Anyway, I just love three minute pop songs.

Some fragments from this idea remain however. You’ll notice tracks 1, 5, 10, 15 and 20 are all over ten minutes long, but with some pop gems in between which make the whole affair far more palatable. Having said that, this weeks selections run to almost 2 hours, making it the longest Nobody’s Listening EVER!..ever..ever…ever..

Of course, Paulo’s Pick Of The Week joins in the fun with his own long song, in fact my very good friend, bandmate and habitual glue sniffer was the genesis of my abandoned folly with his selection for this week.

Ok, let’s shake some action…

Track 1. Circular C by Mountains.

****PAULO’S PICK OF THE WEEK****

We kick straight off with PPOTW. This is the track that prompted me to consider a marathon playlist, but as mentioned above,  it proved to be a mammoth task. This comes from the Brooklyn duos 2013 LP ‘Centralia’ and is a gorgeous, ten minute fusion of acoustic noodling and electronica which can move you to a different place. Not ideal when you’re on a busy M40 and you really should be paying attention to the road instead of drifting off to another plain..

Track 2. Pink Frost by The Chills.

We make what I believe is our first stop in New Zealand next with cult eighties band The Chills and a cheery gothic romance about someone accidentally killing their lover in their sleep. The opening guitar figure was borrowed almost wholesale for  Cate Le Bon’s 2013 single ‘I Can’t Help You’.

Track 3.  Never Gonna Leave You by Evans Pyramid.

Coming across like Chic on a budget, this 1978 slice of emotional soul has no less clout. Andre Evans worked with some big names before striking out on his own to produce long lost smooth disco tunes like this. Names such as the genius that was Isaac Hayes, more of him later…

Track 4. Christo Redemptor by Charlie Musselwhite.

Legendary blues-harp man Charlie Musselwhite up next with his signature tune that featured on his 1966 LP ‘Stand Back! Here Comes Charley Musselwhite’s Southside Band.’ Charlie was allegedly the inspiration for Dan Akroyds character Elwood J. Blues.

Track 5. Marquee Moon by Television.

Our next refugee from the long songs project is a track that should be familiar to every music lover on the planet. Just how magnificent is this? A classic I know every single part of intimately but it still never fails to blow me away every single time I hear it. I had this cranked up to ear damaging levels on my journey home last week, and as I passed the other vehicles on a packed M1, there were a few smiles of recognition as it pumped out of my open windows. Me? I grinned like a goon throughout its glorious ten minutes and forty eight seconds. Then I put it on again.

Track 6. Doria by Ólafur Arnalds.

This is the final piece from Icelandic multi-instrumentalist and producer Arnalds’ ‘Island Songs’ project which began in June this year. Releasing a new piece every Monday for seven weeks, he took us on a musical journey through his homeland. ‘Doria’ brings us to his hometown of Reykjavik and it’s a beautiful piece of work. Piano and strings sweep us along, capturing the magical essence of this most mythical of landscapes.

Track 7. Go Down Gamblin’ by Blood Sweat And Tears.

The opener from their fourth LP released in 1971 ‘BS&T 4’, this couldn’t be anymore different from the preceding track on this weeks playlist. A ballsy, rocky, brassy number with a growly vocal from David Clayton-Thomas who left shortly afterwards, just one of many in the almost comical rotation of players who had spells with the band.

Track 8. Light Flight by Pentangle.

I think this is the first time I’ve selected a track with the accompanying video in mind. Light Flight was released in 1969 and became a surprise chart hit after it was used as the theme to the TV show ‘Take Three Girls’. The below clip from the following year is a delight to behold, from the guitar interplay between Jansch and Renbourn, the light jazz fills of Terry Cox, Danny Thompson’s nimble Double Bass and of course, Jacqui McShee’s floaty, dreamy vocal. A Jazz-folk masterclass.

Track 9. Prayer For The Dying by Lisa Hannigan.

Our cover star this week first came to my attention when she featured in a tribute concert for Nick Drake. Her take on ‘At The Chime Of A City Clock’ was a charming, unaffected treat. This brand new track comes from her latest LP ‘At Swim’ released just a fortnight ago and showcases her mournful voice harmonising with itself to wonderful effect.

Track 10. Roadhouse by Gnoomes.

Our third escapee from the long songs project is a band that I hadn’t heard of until I received their album as a birthday gift a couple of weeks back. At almost 16 minutes long, the LP version (the version on the playlist) is best experienced somewhere dark and cranked up as loud as you can allow. The four minute radio edit seems to be the only video available on the net, but I have managed to source a ten minute live rendition which captures the essence below.

Track 11. Baby You Got It by Brenton Wood.

And after a 16 minute Krautrocky epic for your main meal, here’s a two minute slice of poppy soul to cleanse your palate. This was the follow up to Wood’s million selling 1967 single ‘Gimme Little Sign’ but despite it’s similarity in style, failed to dent the charts.

Track 12. You Don’t Know Me by Caetano Veloso.

The lead track from his 1972 LP, ‘Transa’ which was recorded while the Brazilian was exiled in London under orders of the Military dictatorship which ruled his country at the time. A protest song which switches between English and Portuguese, it has a laid back, typically Brazilian folky feel belying the anger he felt at towards his fascist overlords.

Track 13. Rouge Rouge by Christie Laume.

It’s been a while since we had some Ye-Ye. Let’s put that right with this Fuzz guitar ridden piece of Gallic Joy from 1967. Kick off your shoes and do that shaky head dance thing you see in every sixties pop film. You’ll feel better for it, trust me.

Track 14. These Ringing Hills by Belbury Poly.

I mentioned Ghost Box recordings a few weeks back when Paul chose The Advisory Circle as his pick of the week and it seemed amiss to not feature their other ‘big’ act Belbury Poly, so here they are with the lead track from their latest LP ‘New Ways Out’. I know a certain Darlington FC fan by the name of James Dryden will be pleased to see their inclusion as he’s a massive fan. But, as I suspect he never reads the blog, he’ll never know. The little shithouse.

Track 15. Autumn Leaves by Cannonball Adderley.

From the 1958 Blue Note album ‘Somethin’ Else’ comes our penultimate ten minute plus track. Recorded by Adderley whilst still a member of the Miles Davis sextet, the saxophonist drafted in his boss for trumpet duties. one of the few times Davis featured as a sideman.

Track 16. Sweet Love Bandit by The Stampeders.

Next, we have another two and a bit minutes worth of frothy pop to ease you out of our last track. This Canadian rock trio started as a five piece in 1964 but didn’t make any real inroads until the early seventies. They then began chalking up hits on the Canadian charts including this 1976 single which reached the giddy heights of No.39 on the Canuck hit parade.

Track 17.By Your Side by Sean Rowe.

Deep voiced, real life grizzly Adams Rowe has been making music since he was 12 years old and is an avid naturalist. Here he is with a cover of eighties chanteuse Sade’s ‘By Your Side’ released last year. The video below is a live performance and it’s an absolutely beautiful rendition. He really does make it his own.

Track 18. Moments Like These by The Amazing.

I’m quite sure I’ve featured The Amazing on N.L before now and I’ll continue to do so until the rest of the world is convinced of their brilliance. I first discovered the band around six or seven years ago now but, as yet, I’ve failed to meet or talk to anyone else who’s heard of the Swedish act. This is from their fourth LP released a couple of months back, ‘Ambulance’. Give it a spin then go back and listen to their entire back catalogue, you won’t be disappointed. No vid, Bah!

Track 19. Free Love by Cornershop.

Taken from their criminally ignored 2009 album ‘Judy Sucks a Lemon For Breakfast’, this is Cornershop at their best. A nagging, almost stuttering bass line, understated sitar and Tjinder Singh chanting a lyric in Punjabi. There really is no other band like them, my only wish is that they’d make more records.

Track 20. Walk On By by Isaac Hayes.

There really was only one option for the soul slowie closer to our jettisoned epic playlist, and this simply had to remain as one of the escapees. Hayes’ take on Bacharach has to be heard to be believed. Just listen to the arrangement, it’s absolutely faultless. I’d go as far to say that it’s my favourite version of the track, even beating Dionne Warwicks definitive take. There’s just SO much going on here. And so much to love. Please don’t settle for the edited version, you have to take in all 12 minutes of this album cut. I can’t think of a better use for your ears.

 

Well then. There you go. I think you’ll concur that it was still an epic. I’ll maybe consider knocking out a short song playlist in the future for those of you with attention deficits. Looking back at this week’s selections, I’d say it’s one of my Favourite NL’s so far. I hope you agree. And I hope you’ll join us again at the same time and place next week. In the meantime, please feel free to join in the fun at our facebook page Here. Ta ta for now, see you next time.

 

Until then, don’t go wasting your emotion, lay all your love on me.

 

Andrew Orley.

 

At The Office Where The Papers Grow, She Takes A Break.

macca

Nobody’s Listening. No 41. 29.8.16.

 

Hullo. Much the same as this weeks soaring temperatures,  we’re clinging on to summer here at N.L with a few tracks  that doggedly refuse to acknowledge the nights drawing in and the oncoming drop in degrees. That’s not to say we’re avoiding the inevitable, there’s also some picks with a distinctly Autumnal feel too…

At the time of writing this intro, my very good friend, bandmate and silent partner in the Blockbuster video chain, Paul D’Cruz is yet to submit his pick of the week. He better get a wriggle on or I may be forced to dock his wages, the bloody layabout. I’m sure it’ll be another belter though.

Ok, onward, Christian soldiers…

 

Track 1. Rio by Low Cut Connie.

We begin with some modern day rockin and rollin. Low Cut Connie are fronted by Adam Weiner whose Jerry Lee Lewis piano chops propel the majority of their output. This track is taken from their 2011 debut LP ‘Get Out the Lotion’, and is a stomping start to this weeks playlist. Enjoy it while it lasts, we get a bit more downbeat for a good chunk of these next nineteen picks..

Track 2. Halelo by Dur-Dur Band.

…not just yet though, there’s still time to get your freak on with this six and a half minute cut from the Mogadishu disco scene in 1987. Somalia’s The Dur-Dur band counted seventeen members among their number at the time, and every single one sound like they’re having an amazing time.

Track 3. Marcy by Kelley Stoltz.

Ok, the next few tracks are a bit ‘white boy with guitar’, but each one has its own individual merits. It’s just the way the selection process fell at the time. I’m blaming long night shifts filled with introspection followed by precious little sleep the next day. Stoltz has been around for a while now and was a former member of former NL alumni Sonny And The Sunsets. This comes from his 2013 LP, ‘Double Exposure’.

Track 4. In Ear Park by Department Of Eagles.

D.O.E have been a going concern since the early 2000’s but have only released just the one LP, 2008’s ‘In Ear Park’ from which this is the title track. The project has laid dormant since then as one half of the duo is Daniel Rossen who went on to greater success with Grizzly Bear. Here’s hoping he returns to his first band at some point, as the album was one of my favourites of that year.

Track 5. For Emily, Wherever I May Find Her by David Essex.

****PAULO’S PICK OF THE WEEK****

Here he is! Better late than never..This week, Paul has gone for a Simon and Garfunkel cover that featured on Mr Essex’s debut 1973 LP ‘Rock On’. The gypsy king started his musical career playing drums for a local band in the early sixties, a skill I nearly took advantage of thirty years later when he offered to sit behind the kit for my mid nineties band ‘Parker’. We didn’t take him up on the offer though as we already had a drummer and Mr Essex wasn’t seen as cool enough for a britpop combo by our collective young eyes. Completely wrong decision of course. The man is a legend.

Track 6. Makachi by Chris Weisman

Weisman has been incredibly prolific over the past seven years, releasing almost twenty full length LP’s! This comes from his latest,’Hi’ which dropped in March and is a playful ditty that almost sounds as if it was recorded at double speed.

Track 7. Earth Anthem by The Turtles.

Taken from their 1968 concept LP ‘The Turtles Present the Battle of the Bands’ in which The Turtles took on a different persona for each of the twelve tracks. This is the album closer and was recorded at 3:00 A.M. by candlelight, to capture the exact mood the band wanted.

Track 8. Here Today by Paul McCartney.

I recently finished Philip Norman’s epic 800 plus page biography on Sir Thumbsaloft. It’s a rollicking read as you’d expect. The author singles out this track which was a tribute to his recently departed friend and recorded shortly after that dark December day in 1980. Norman mentions that it was pretty much overlooked at the time, nestled as it was on the ‘McCartney ii’ album. It’s one of our cover stars best if you ask me. Heartfelt and with a beautiful string quartet reminiscent of ‘Yesterday’. Don’t know what Lennon would have made of it though. He’d have probably called Macca a ‘daft get’ while secretly admiring his former partners god given knack with a melody…

Track 9. Sleepy Lagoon by Carl Broemel.

Broemel is the guitarist with My Morning Jacket but has found the time in-between his duties with the Kentucky band to release three solo albums. This comes from the latest, ‘4th of July’ released just a few weeks ago and it’s a beauty. Check out the below vid and marvel at the sound he creates with just a Duesenberg Starplayer TV and some loop pedals.

Track 10. Little Sea by Sea Of Bees.

Ok, let’s take a break from white boys with guitars to move onto a white girl with a guitar. Namely Julie Ann Baenziger, for she is ‘Sea Of Bees’ and this comes from her 2015 release ‘Build A Boat To The Sun’. Lovely it is too, with a relaxed Californian country style. No vid I’m afraid.

Track 11. The Roundabout by Ryley Walker.

When we featured Ryley Walker way back in January I mentioned that the one major issue I had was with his voice. On his debut ‘Primrose Green’, it was far too close to Tim Buckley to think of anyone else. It seems he’s now managed to shake off that impression and found a new confident voice to back up his already exemplary guitar playing.

Track 12. Okie From Muskogee by Tommy Cash.

Johnny’s kid brother up next with a Merle Haggard song that has been covered by umpteen artists, and featured on just as many films and TV shows down the years. I include Tommy’s version for no other reason than I wanted a Tommy Cash song this week. Forever in the shadow of his big bro, he’s been active in the music game for over fifty years and is still going strong today.

Track 13. No Destruction by Foxygen.

The second track and third single from their first proper full length, 2013’s excellently titled ‘We Are the 21st Century Ambassadors of Peace & Magic’. This could be a companion piece to the previous selection in that they both mention San Francisco and are country tinged. Although this is more your slacker, Pavement style country similar to Malkmus’ classic, ‘Range Life’.

Track 14. Supper At Phil’s by Tubby Hayes.

Alright! Finally a break from white fellers with guitars. And now, a white feller with a tenor sax! Hayes was one of the best known Jazz multi instrumentalists of the fifties and sixties, beginning his career at the tender age of sixteen. He went on to play with all the British jazz greats including Kenny Ball, Ronnie Scott and Jimmy Deuchar before becoming a band leader in his own right. Tubby suffered from heart problems which curtailed his career in the early seventies before eventually passing away in 1973 at the age of just 38.

Track 15. Some Sunsick Day by Morgan Delt.

This scuzzy piece of Californian pop is the album closer to Delt’s latest long player, ‘Phase Zero’ which was released recently on Sub Pop. It has a floaty psychy vibe with sixties echoes running through it particularly in the Joe Meek-esque opening notes which crop up throughout.

Track 16. I’m Not In Love by 10cc.

Surely this needs no introduction. I’ll give it one though. One of the greatest records of the seventies in my book. One of the greatest records of all time, actually. I’m not going to dissect it or wheel out tired stories about its production, just turn it up as loud as you can and lose yourself in its utter majesty. Then do it again.

Track 17. Aint No Saint by John Martyn.

The much missed Mr Martyn next and a cut from his Jazzy fifth album ‘Inside Out’. This features some lovely tabla from Kesh Sathie and was a favourite of the man himself. The track’s title was chosen for a career spanning retrospective of John’s released shortly before his death.

Track 18. Para Qué Sufrir by Natalia Lafourcade.

Mexican singer songwriter Natalia is one of the most successful singers in Latin America. Her latest album ‘Hasta La Raiz’ won this years Grammy for Best Latin Rock, Urban or Alternative Album and this light piece of bossa loveliness is taken from it.

Track 19. Aht Uh Mi Hed by Shuggie Otis.

Next up is guitar prodigy Shuggie Otis and a track from his three years in the making 1974 LP, ‘Inspiration Information’. Shuggie was still only eighteen when he began work on his second solo album, playing almost all the instruments save for the gorgeous strings which interject periodically.

Track 20. By The Time I Get To Phoenix by Erma Franklin.

S.S.C time. I don’t think there’s been a bad version of Jimmy Webb’s classic. From Frank Sinatra to Isaac Hayes to Nick Cave, and of course Glen Campbell’s pretty much definitive rendition. Erma gives it a new dimension here though. Her delivery evokes escaping from, rather than simply leaving a lover.

 

There you go then. That’s another twenty tracks and 1 hour and 24 minutes worth of listening pleasure for your lugoils. Next week, we have a mammoth playlist which is just shy of two hours long. Hooo-whee! So Join us then, or join us now! At the facebook page HERE!.

 

Until then, Pay Your Rates.

Andrew Orley.

I Laughed So Loud Inside Myself, It All Began To Hurt.

C__Data_Users_DefApps_Windows Phone_AppData_INTERNETEXPLORER_Temp_Saved Images_angel-olsen-hi-five

Nobody’s Listening. No.40. 22.8.16.

Hullo. Welcome to playlist number 40. Yes, it’s still going with no end in sight. Well, maybe. I’m toying with the idea of ending on number 50, or maybe 52 so you’ve got a full year of not listening. We’ll see. When I started compiling these playlists it was only meant to be an occasional thing but the very next week I did another and it rolled on from there. I suppose I’ll keep on going until it becomes a chore, but at the moment I’m still enjoying it  so, as I said, we’ll see…

Anyway, what have we got for you this week? More of what you’d expect and a few surprises here and there including of course Paulo’s Pick Of The Week. This week my very good friend, bandmate and the man who dubbed the English voice of Zoltar in Battle Of The Planets has chosen a throwback to seventies P.I.F’s. (Public Information Films).

Hey ho, Let’s go…

Track 1. Ruby by Silver Apples.

What better way to kick off our ‘Ruby’ edition of Nobody’s Listening than with this 1968 track from electronic music pioneers Silver Apples? Actually it was a close call between this and tracks by Kaiser Chiefs and Kenny Rogers. Nah, not really, this was a shoe in. They’re playing a few shows in the UK next week, unfortunately work commitments mean I can’t attend, but I urge you to catch one if you can.

Track 2. My Smile Is Just A Frown (Turned Upside Down) by Carolyn Crawford.

This minor Motown hit was released in 1964 by Ms Crawford who was only fourteen years old at the time. The winner of a Detroit radio station talent contest, her prize was a recording contract with the esteemed Motor City label.

Track 3. Intern by Angel Olsen.

After our sixties opening salvo we bring you bang up to date with this weeks cover star. Olsen released this single in June this year as a pre-cursor to her LP ‘MY WOMAN’ which is slated for release next month. It begins as a minimalist electronic piece until the minute and a half mark when her yearning vocal takes a higher register and the synths swell before melting away once more. Slightly truncated video below, so seek out the whole track if you can.

Track 4. Mind How You Go by The Advisory Circle.

****PAULO’S PICK OF THE WEEK****

Ghostbox recordings are a record label I have long admired since discovering them on Stuart Maconies excellent ‘Freakzone’ show in the mid 2000’s. Along with Belbury Poly, The Advisory Circle have been listening staples since then, their seventies inspired soundscapes influenced by schools programmes, public information films and long forgotten British films of the time. With nods to the BBC Radiophonic workshop and the use of analogue synths and sound clips, their patented brand of retro futurism has that same unsettling nature of their source material. This week, Paulo has gone for the first release from Jon Brooks’ T.A.C from 2004. He’s also specifically requested the below video which features clips from those P.I.F’s that served as nightmare material for impressionable youngsters in the 70’s/80’s. Do sleep well.

Track 5. Do It Do It Disco by Myron And E.

Modern day soul next from a duo based in San Francisco. Taken from their 2013 debut ‘Broadway’, this has a relaxed vibe that shares similarities with their Bay area friends and fellow retro soul outfit, Blackalicious.

Track 6. Sense by King Gizzard And The Lizard Wizard.

KGATLW have been incredibly prolific since their inception in 2010. Eight albums in just under four years is pretty much unheard of these days. What is also amazing is that the quality doesn’t suffer either, great care has been taken to ensure each release contains only top notch psych-rock. This is a quieter moment from last years ‘Paper Mâché Dream Balloon’. Terrible band name, but never judge a book by its cover..

Track 7. I Walk Alone by Marijata.

Eleven minutes of rare Afro funk from 1976 up next. Perfect for these late summer evenings, lose yourself in a Ghanian odyssey that has superb laid back playing, particularly from the guitarist and trumpeter. All backed by a rhythm section that doesn’t get too showy but holds everything down perfectly.

Track 8. A Pleasure To Burn by Rose Windows.

We keep languid next with a Seattle band who formed in 2010 and released two LP’s on sub pop before splitting last year. A shame, as the two albums showed great promise and their live performances were hypnotic, enchanting experiences, as evident in the video below.

Track 9. First Run by Cian Nugent.

Taken from the Irishmans debut solo release from earlier this year, ‘Night Fiction’, this track has a Kurt Vile easiness about it in the vocal delivery while Nugent’s skill as a guitarist is the reason you’ll want to come back to it again and again.

Track 10. Mary Won’t You Warm My Bed by Colin Blunstone.

The Zombies’ frontman frequently popped up on Radio 2 in the eighties with his Denny Laine penned-early seventies hit ‘Say You Don’t Mind’. I always enjoyed it when it made an appearance, enough to seek out his debut solo LP from 1971 ‘One Year’ which features this magnificent track, written by his former bandmate Rod Argent. The album as a whole is thoroughly enjoyable by the way, with sumptuous arrangements by Argent and Tony Visconti.

Track 11. Wack Wack by Tim ‘Love’ Lee.

A bit of light relief next. Tim ‘Love’ Lee started out as Hammond organist in Katrina And The Waves before reinventing himself as a DJ, mixer and ‘selector’ in the nineties. This track from his 1997 debut features a heavy sample from Young-Holt Unlimited’s instrumental of the same name.

Track 12. Balek by Marc Moulin.

Fender Rhodes and oscillator heavy goodness from the Belgian Jazz great next. Released with his band ‘Placebo’ (No, not that godawful, arse end of the nineties outfit), this has the air of a mid seventies cop movie car chase sequence that segues into sci-fi.

Track 13. Ebolo by Bell’a Njoh.

Back to Africa next with a slab of primitive Disco funk from 1978. I have no information whatsoever on the artist so just enjoy, and get down.

Track 14. Searching For My C.C by Inez And Charlie Foxx.

This brother and sister duo from North Carolina are probably best known for their 1963 million selling hit ‘Mockingbird’, a song which went on to bear countless covers, most notably by James Taylor and Carly Simon. This is a far more rocking affair and showcases Inez’s soulful voice.

Track 15. I See Her by Bob Chance.

This oddity from 1980 came to my attention through the always excellent tastes of Jonny Trunk. Hard to describe, Mr Trunk himself tries to put his finger on its weirdness thus..’A touch of Giorgio Moroder, a bit of the Beach Boys and a sprinkle of Glen Campbell as a serial killer.’ The album this track comes from ‘It’s Broken’ is a trip in itself. Go seek!

Track 16. Let Me Love You Like I Do by Padang Food Tigers.

This slight, atmospheric instrumental from London based experimental folk duo, Padang Food Tigers is over almost before it begins. At just over two minutes, it’s actually one of the longer tracks from their 2012 LP ‘Ready Country Nimbus’. No video, unfortunately.

Track 17. Meshkalina by Traffic Sound.

Next up we have some Peruvian psychedelia from 1969. Traffic Sound began covering popular rock outfits of the time including The Doors, Cream and Jimi Hendrix before going on to release their first album of original material titled ‘Virgin’ in ’69, from which this track became a big hit in South America. Their follow up LP, ‘Lux’ was recorded shortly afterwards but subsequently disappeared after a strike at their recording studio. It materialised some 27 years later and proved to be a lost classic.

Track 18. Am I The Same Girl by Barbara Acklin.

A few weeks back, I mentioned the instrumental version of this 1968 track by The Young-Holt Unlimited, ‘Soulful Strut’ and made a mental note to include Acklins version at some point, so here it is. Later to be made a hit by smooth jazzsters Swing Out Sister in the eighties, who to be honest made a decent fist of it. This original is the bees-knees though.

Track 19. The Greatest Love by B.J. Thomas.

Perhaps best known for the Bacharach and David song ‘Raindrops Keep Fallin’ On My Head’, Thomas has other treasures to be found in a career that is fifty years strong and continues to this day. Here we find him in fine voice on a cut from his 1973 LP ‘Songs’.

Track 20. Once In A While by The Chimes.

Back to Doo-wop for our soul slowie closer with a band formed, like so many others, in Brooklyn in the mid fifties. This, their first single, was a version of Tommy Dorsey’s ‘Once in a While’, released on Tag Records. The song became a hit in the U.S., peaking at No.11 on the Billboard Hot 100 in 1961.

 

Alrooty then. That closes our twenty pop picks for another week. Don’t forget to get involved with our facebook page Here and many thanks again for all your shares and likes. Keep spreading the good word, keep not listening, and we’ll meet back here next week., Kay? Kay.

Until then, I’ll see you on the next one, and don’t be late.

 

Andrew Orley.

These Are The Good Old Days.

C__Data_Users_DefApps_Windows Phone_AppData_INTERNETEXPLORER_Temp_Saved Images_Carly-Simon-Feet-70561

Nobody’s Listening. No.39. 15.8.16.

 

Hullo. Well, our big return last week saw a dip in readership from previous editions of NL. After building a keen following in the past few months it seems some of you have forgotten all about the playlist that lives to give. I’m assuming everyone was out and about enjoying the high summer, who can blame you? Enjoy it while it lasts as the cold hand of winter draws ever nearer.

Some good news however, is that along with our core UK followers we had readers dipping in from Norway, Poland, The U.S. and Greece (Hello and Welcome, Nick). We’re truly an international family!

Ok, on with business. Another mixed bag of tricks this week as always. There’s something for everyone including of course, Paulo’s Pick Of The Week. My very good friend, bandmate and Grade 7 Bassoonist has come up with a sound which is new to me. I do so love it when he educates, informs and entertains..

Alright then, let’s Marvin Gaye and get it on..

Track 1. Law Of The Land by The Undisputed Truth.

We begin with this 1973 album title track from minor Motown group The Undisputed Truth. Psychedelic soul pioneer and producer Norman Whitfield used the act as a testing ground for songs which would then be passed to The Temptations to make big hits of. They were the first to record ‘Papa Was A Rolling Stone’ and indeed, this particular track bears more than a passing resemblance to the magnificent Temps smash ‘Cloud 9’. They eventually morphed into an inevitable disco act before disbanding in 1979.

Track 2. If I’m Unworthy by Blake Mills.

Probably best known for his work with singer and songwriter Fiona Apple, Mills has also collaborated with artists including Neil Diamond, Lucinda Williams, Julian Casablancas and Conor Oberst. He’s no slouch as a performer either, dubbed a ‘Phenomenal’ guitarist by no less than Eric Clapton himself. This is backed up on the below live version of this 2014 track which I’ve gone for, the man certainly knows his way around a plank of wood. Please also check out the studio version though, beguiling stuff.

Track 3. Nador by Les Variations.

French Rock band Les Variations up next with the instrumental title track from their 1969 debut. They counted one F.R David among their throng who later went on to have a worldwide hit with the sappy ‘Words (Don’t Come Easy)’ in the early eighties. Don’t worry, this couldn’t be any more different, acoustic gorgeousness which has elements of the bands North African heritage.

Track 4. Lord Morocco by Ginger Johnson And His African Messengers.

Speaking of North Africa..In title only mind you, Johnson actually hailed from Nigeria. He became a well known counter culture figure on the swinging sixties London scene performing with Georgie Fame, Brian Auger, Long John Baldry, Graham Bond, Hawkwind, Genesis, and Elton John as well as appearing at the famous Stones’ Hyde park concert.

Track 5. Shake Off The Demon by Brewer And Shipley.

This is the title track from the duo’s fourth LP released in 1971. It features some stellar slide guitar work from John Cipollina, guitarist and founder of Quicksilver Messenger Service. Incorrect title on the vid below. Divs.

Track 6. Do You Believe by Supreme Jubilees.

It’s been a while since I featured a release from the superb archive record label, Light In The Attic. Let’s put that right with this relaxed slab of gospel soul, re- released by L.I.T.A last year, it has a classic Californian soul sound which belies it’s relatively late 1981 release date.

Track 7. Someday by Middle Brother.

Up next we have a smashing piece of harmony heavy pop-rock from five years back. Middle Brother are an American three piece who to date have only released one album to mass indifference. They really should be bigger than they are, superb songwriting that has a great deal in common with Ezra Furman, right down to the impassioned lead vocal.

Track 8. Jade Lake by Pierre Ralph.

Taken from the soundtrack to 1972 French horror flick ‘Requiem Pour Un Vampire’, this is a gentle, atmospheric piece. I haven’t seen the film but I imagine it to be playing softly as a scantily dressed, nineteenth century Gallic strumpet frolics by the titular body of water…

Track 9. On The Streets by John Kongos.

South African singer and songwriter Kongos is probably best known for his 1971 top 10 single, ‘He’s Gonna Step on You Again’, on which Happy Mondays based their hit ‘Step On’. This piece of library music is a synth and guitar heavy instrumental which I can only gather he knocked off to pay the rent. It’s still thoroughly enjoyable though, with shades of the great William Onyeabor. No vid..

Track 10. Life Could Be A Dream by Holy Sons.

****PAULO’S PICK OF THE WEEK****

It seems I’m late to the party with PPOTW this week. Emil Amos has been releasing records since 2000 with eleven LP’s under his belt. This is my first experience of his music and comes from album number 10, 2014’s ‘The Fact Facer’. On the strength of this track, I’ll definitely be going back to see what I’ve been missing out on. Cheers Paulo

Track 11. Star Sail by Verve.

Notice the absence of ‘The’. Yes, this is how I want to remember them, and that is what I shall always call them. Man they were some band back then. McCabe’s guitar shining instead of strumming dull riffs. Ashcroft at his ‘Mad Richard’ bonkers best instead of lazily peddling lyrical cliches. ‘A Storm In Heaven’ will always be one of the great debuts, ‘A Northern Soul’ one of the great sophomore LP’s, the rest that followed? Meh. I’ll stick with these, ta,

Track 12. Everybody’s Gone by Senseless Things.

These pop punk rowdies had a cracking run of singles in 1991, this being the first. The then crusty type me devoured them all. Great fun live, you were guaranteed to emerge from the mosh pit with at least one superficial injury. Their record sleeves were designed by comic book artist Jamie Hewlett, later to create Tank Girl and cartoon band Gorrilaz with Damon Albarn.

Track 13. You Are What You Do by Lee Michaels.

A hammond organ virtuoso, Michaels scored a U.S Top 10 hit with his 1971 single ‘Do You Know What I Mean?’. This early blue eyed soul track comes from the LP which followed, aptly titled ‘5th’ as it was LP No. 5 from the Californian

Track 14. Rachel by The Wedding Present.

Brand new track from The Weddoes up next. Gedge is in romantic mood here, a touching love song with a lyric about skimming stones, stroking hair and guitars ‘playing our song’, all backed up by Dave’s still growly, but tempered stratocaster.

Track 15. Mas Que Nada by Oscar Peterson.

And with all that sporty business going on in Rio, why not? The temptation was to go for the well known Sérgio Mendes version, overused but still marvellous. Instead I’ve gone for O.P and a lesser known take from his 1966 LP ‘Soul Español’.

Track 16. Tain’t Nobody’s Business If I Do (Part 2) by Frank Stokes.

This cut from 1928 comes from an artist many musicologists consider the father of the Memphis blues guitar style. I also urge you to check out Bessie Smith’s 1922 version, slowed down and backed by piano, it’s intriguing to compare and contrast the female/male perspectives on the same song.

Track 17. Pattern Of The North by Rival Consoles.

We jump forward almost ninety years with our next track released just last week. Ryan West made the conscious decision to move away from digital for this release and it pays off. There’s a heart to the warmth of these old synths, the beginning few bars reminiscent of Townshend’s experiments with the instrument on ‘Baba O’ Riley’. The similarities end there however as the piece develops into a modern day electronica symphony.

Track 18. Don’t Talk (Put Your Head On My Shoulder)- Stack-o-Vocals Version by The Beach Boys.

Brian Wilson recently celebrated the fiftieth anniversary of Pet Sounds by taking to the road and performing the much feted LP in its entirety. I missed out on those shows so I was delighted when he announced one final performance at the Albert Hall in October. To hear these ‘Teenage Symphonies To God’ in a venue dedicated to the love of one man will be an intensely emotional experience for me. I’m sure I’ve bored you before with my love of The B’B’s, an act I was completely obsessed with in my teens and early twenties, and still love today. Indeed, my dog is named Wilson after the brothers. Everyone must be familiar with every second of the LP so I’ve plumped for this almost acapella version of one of my favourites from the album, Brian’s double tracked vocal punctuated only by that gorgeous, mournful string break with the timpani ‘Heartbeats’. Roll on October…

Track 19. The Right Thing To Do by Carly Simon.

Cover star time with a song which again, should be familiar to everyone. That doesn’t mean it shouldn’t merit inclusion on our playlist. These songs are well known for a reason, that being they are ace.

Track 20. All Along I’ve Loved You by Tony Ashley And The Delicates.

The trouble with discovering lost soul gems like these is there is very little information out there to shine a light on exactly who the artists are. From what I can gather, our Soul slowie closer this week comes from 1967 and a man who turned down the chance to work with James Brown for fear of not getting paid. What I do know is that this is a lovely piece of Memphis soul, the backing girls slightly high in the mix giving it a rough demo feel, but more heart.

And so, that’s another week done and dusted. Thanks for staying with us if you have, if not, come back! We still love you and you can have our last rolo.
Also, if you haven’t already, please join the facebook group here. It’s a lovely place, with lovely people sharing lovely music. Lovely.

 

Same time, same place next week then, yeah?

 

Until then, free your mind and your ass will follow.

 

Andrew Orley.