Speakers Push Air


REALLY Wonky
July 30, 2008, 10:48 am
Filed under: MP3

I was quite intrigued to find out (probably much later than everyone else, for shame) that Appleblim (who does make some of the best ‘dubstep’ around, I think) was a member of The Monsoon Bassoon, who I remember as a kind of sub-Cardiacs /  Org fanzine load of nonsense. An even weirder discovery than that D&B geezer Klute was drummer for the Stupids…

Which led me to thinking: not living in Hackney, or Croydon, and not being fully up to speed on the chapter and verse of the Ardkore Continuum and the like, I probably quite often like dubstep for odd reasons. I love Digital Mystikz precisely because they do sound like early 90s digidub, and I do like a lot of the wonkier stuff because it has a similarly skullfucked mood to a lot of the more messy bands I liked in the late 80s, even though the sounds are obviously coming from somewhere completely different, and from people who’ve never taken a brown microdot.

All of which led, as these things do, to Terminal Cheesecake. Terminal Cheesecake were just wrong. Not explicitly, joyfully, in your face wrong like the Butthole Surfers (who absolutely rocked Kentish Town Forum on Saturday, despite the ropey sound). But a more creepy, unsettling, ‘what the fuck are these people UP TO?’ kind of wrong. Then – for the first time in a long time – I remembered Bud Alzir, a digidub (ish) outfit that sprang up after TC split but with several TC members. The Bud Alzir album was a truly wonderful thing – UK digidub drenched in acid and remodelled in a very Terminal Cheesecake way. I got it out this morning and recalled how much I loved it, and how often I’d play the track below (which I have on a strangely water-damaged 12″) whenever I was doing some kind of digidub set at free parties and the like.

Bud Alzir – Zone 1 (Hansome Records 1995)

So, what I want (what I really, really want) is to find out that Bud Alzir or Gary Boniface or anyone from Terminal Cheesecake is now making some kind of dubstep somewhere. Imagine how wonky that would be, how much that sense of stoned menace present in dubstep would be taken to another level of anxiety?

A boy can dream, can’t he?



Finally! Rehosted All The Mixes
July 28, 2008, 10:09 pm
Filed under: Admin

I’ve finally found an ad free, permanent mp3 host so I’ve moved all my mixes from this blog (and a few of my others) to this new host and created a proper index for the mixes here.

I’ve got some others kicking around (mostly roots ones) that I’ll stick up at some point too.



R.I.P. Cap’n Big Trousers
July 26, 2008, 1:42 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized
Steve With Charlie & Daisy

Steve With Charlie & Daisy

My mate Steve died today. He’d fought a long battle with cancer and finally lost, but not through lack of determination or will or courage. He was a genuinely fantastic human being – we always say that about people who’ve passed, but Steve was different.

He faced his illness with so much dignity and humour and openness and courage, he’ll be a hero of mine forever. If I ever face such a challenge and acquit myself 1/10th as well as he did, I’ll be proud of myself.

Time and distance and families and commitments mean I didn’t see as much of him in the last few years as I would have liked, but whenever I did (usually at Half Man Half Biscuit gigs) it made the evening complete.

My sympathies and my love to his kids Charlie and Daisy and his wife Gabi, and to all of us who’ve lost one of the best friends we’ll ever have.

An absolutely gorgeous bloke. You’d have liked him.

RIP mate.



Big Up Generals Hi Fi
July 25, 2008, 12:04 am
Filed under: Uncategorized
Generals Hi Fi

Generals Hi Fi

I want to give what I believe those young folk call ‘props’ to Generals Hi Fi. I’ve only come across ‘them’ as a ‘him’, the dapper dude at the front, but from tent to tent across the UK and beyond he’s impressed me a lot. He’s good with the foundation roots but also the freshest dancehall (and occasionally the daft – have you HEARD the TOK version of the Jackson 5’s Can U Feel It?). All being well, we’re going to go back-to-back at Electric Picnic at the end of August, at which point I’ll be exposed as a true dibby dibby soundboy and drink myself into a coma out of shame. But it’ll be a laugh.

Anyway, straight out of Bristol and with plenty of local and festival appearances listed here , do check him out if you get a chance. He’s a sharp-dressed bugger too..

Generals Hi Fi, Glade Festival 2008

Generals Hi Fi, Glade Festival 2008



Endorse It!
July 23, 2008, 2:03 pm
Filed under: Festivals

Not long till this year’s Endorse It In Dorset Festival, probably my highlight of the festival year. There’s a great line-up (especially for such a small-but-perfectly-formed festival!) and they’ve just added The Skatalites, which alongside Alabama 3 AND a Psychobilly Sunday, makes for a great weekend.

Once again, Randy And Earl’s Old Record Club have been asked to host the Wig On Casino Tent, running from around midnight till 6am Friday and Saturday, and around 4am Sunday. We’re going to be doing what we enjoy doing most – dropping all kinds of soul, rockabilly, R&B, mod, jazz, blues, garage and ska – to what always seems to be a really appreciate crowd.

You really should come.



Hosting
July 23, 2008, 1:56 pm
Filed under: Admin

During my lapse, I’ve had a few emails about downloads no longer working. With this in mind, I’m about to shift all my hosting to wordpress itself, thus ensuring the permanence of the links and getting rid of pop-ups, ads and the like. Any day now…



Carnivalesque
July 23, 2008, 1:45 pm
Filed under: Festivals

Grand view of Glastonbury 2008

It’s been a strange few months. In between going to some gigs and festivals, I’ve managed to have something of a breakdown, so apologies for not being around.

I was inspired to get back to this by a friend of mine <waves at Eamonn – big up the General’s Hi Fi!> telling me he went to see Rachel Unthank recently because of my recommendation on this very blog. That made me feel all warm inside and made me want to try and get some blogging momentum going again.

Rachel Unthank & The Winterset, Glastonbury 2008

Rachel Unthank & The Winterset, Glastonbury 2008

Having been signed off work pretty much constantly all summer, I’ve been listening to a LOT of music, although to be honest most of it hasn’t been new. I’ve been digging deeper into the astonishing amount of 40s and 50s R&B (stuff like you’d find on the Stompin’ At The Savoy boxset, that sort of thing), along with lots of gospel, blues, rockabilly. The prime motivation for this is that the gigs myself and Jared now play at the festivals are as Randy & Earl’s Old Record Club, which grew out of our old Lovely Morning slots at various festivals and is now what we call ourselves whenever we’re not doing People’s Republic Of Disco nights.

But alongside that, at the moment I’m just finding it a lot more rewarding than most of the new stuff that by rights I should be chasing down. Having said that, perhaps as a reaction to the amount of vintage music I’m listening to, I do seem to be getting back into lots of noise and filth and nonsense: lots of dark / doom / stoner metal (and not just the Wire-approved artsy end of it as well, but really dumb stuff like Electric Wizard), and even odd forays back into breakcore, the harder end of jungle, that sort of caper.

Anyway, Glastonbury was absolutely wonderful, a blessed relief after the preceding years (although the early signs weren’t good, weatherwise, and one more wet one might have finished it off forever for me.. ).

Highlights: well, it was Candi Staton’s festival, really. I’ve seen too many heritage-style soul revue shows to expect too much from such veterans these days, but she was a revelation. Low on cheese, high on funky, funky soul. Her voice is in great shape, she played a perfectly judged (mostly – I think – chronological) set that took in favourites like “Old Man’s Sweetheart” before finishing on a pretty decent version of “You Got The Love” that had the whole field really going for it.

Candi Staton, Glastonbury 2008

Candi Staton, Glastonbury 2008

The Old Record Club played no less than three different slots on the Sunday, so I barely saw any acts. However, I did manage to see about 2/3rds of Leonard Cohen’s totally spellbinding mainstage set. It all felt a bit odd – we knew why he was there, he knew we knew, etc. Having never seen him before, I can only guess that this was reflected in the utterly charming and gracious way he carried himself and the way he seemed too give it all he could (apparently his solo shows have been 3-hours plus…). Not too proud to admit that I sobbed like a child when he did Hallelujah and 70,000 or whatever voices joined in (I’m a sucker for a big moment, me). Scurrying up to do a set at the other end of the site straight after, I caught a couple of minutes of King Solomon Burke doing an equally momentous, heartbreaking number and was in a bit of a state when  I showed up to play.

Holy Fuck were fantastic, but stuck on in a stupid afternoon slot – they deserved to be on late and loud. Jay-Z was great fun, and managed to make Noel Gallagher look like the troglodyte is he with smarts and humour rather than abuse. Winehouse put in a mostly good set, and here isn’t the place to go into all the various woes around her.

Alabama 3 Unplugged, Glastonbury 2008

Alabama 3 Unplugged, Glastonbury 2008

Managed to see Alabama 3 twice. The first time was when I fled Jimmy Cliff’s execrable performance on Jazz World (honestly, I felt embarassed for the bloke – the worst kind of Vegas twattery I’ve seen in a long time), and A3 were in full line-up mode in the Leftfield Tent. On excellent form as ever – the festival really is the best environment to see them, and despite people still writing them off as some kind of novelty act, they have more wit, politics, passion and tunes than most anybody I can think of. The second time was during a fantastic afternoon in the Avalon Tent – a run of acts that included Rachel Unthank (lovely as ever), The Handsome Family (same) and then the Alabama 3 Unplugged version: a guitar, a harmonica and some voices.

Your host, pissed, Glastonbury 2008

Your host, pissed, Glastonbury 2008

John Cale was an unexpected surprise (I even forgot he was on); The Slackers disappointed a bit but I can’t quite figure why (sounded ‘diluted’, somehow); The Young Knives were more fun than I thought they would be; Glasvegas sounded excellent from outside the tent, which is as near as we could get. Aside from some small bands in bar / tents, I don’t think I saw much else, and I don’t really mind.

The Mutoid Waste Company did wonders with their Trash City area this year, and although the Shangri-La field has improved on the very jaded Lost Vagueness of last year, it still needs to do more to impress against this kind of competition:

Trash City, Glastonbury 2008

Trash City, Glastonbury 2008

Trash City, Glastonbury 2008

Trash City, Glastonbury 2008