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.