Wednesday, 30 January 2013

January's soundtrack

A month of highs & lows as reflected by 31 of the many songs that went into my ears over the last 31 days....

Beach Boys – Cuckoo Clock (from Surfin' Safari, Capitol 1962)
One of several quite silly songs from the Beach Boys' debut album that is just a perfect 2 minutes or so of pop music.

Rodriguez – Like Janis (from Cold Fact, Sussex 1970)
One of many great, melancholy songs from this long-forgotten (except in South Africa; see Searching for Sugar Man) classic. Dylanesque while also completely individual.
Black Blood Stigmata – Illuminate a New Sky (Demo 2012)
A late entry, this USBM song captures what the early black metal movement was all about; rough, primitive but full of atmosphere.

Manu Dibango - Weya (from Africafunk, Harmless 1999)

Great dirty-sounding 70s funk.

Joni Mitchell – All I Want (from Blue, A&M 1971)
One of many affecting, memorable songs from one of the definitive releases of the 'singer-songwriter' era.
Blue Oyster Cult – Black Blade (from Cultosaurus Erectus, Columbia, 1980)
The late 70s/early 80s are not the true BOC fan's favourite period, but the glossy commercial hard rock of that period is catchy and accessible, if lacking the mystery of the earlier years. Plus Michael Moorcock wrote the lyrics for this song!

Spacemen 3 – Big City (from Recurring, Dedicated 1991)
Spacemen 3 were ahead of the psychedelic renaissance at the end of the 80s and Recurring was the pinnacle of their brain-frazzling few years. Big City will always sound nostalgic and futuristic at once.

Kate Bush - Hounds of Love (from Hounds of Love, EMI 1985)

Great song with peculiar lyrics. 

Kurtis Blow – The Breaks (from Kurtis Blow, Mercury 1979)
Classic tuneful rap from the late 70s, a rap record with a really great guitar part.

Yurei – Dali By Night (from Night Visions, Adversum 2012)
Loud yet strangely hushed and suitably nocturnal-sounding jazz-inflected progressive oddness

Immortal – Tyrants (from Sons of Northern Darkness, Nuclear Blast 2002)
Revelling in medieval fascist power fantasies sounds like fun.

Bob Dylan –The Man in Me (from New Morning, Columbia 1970)
Warm, sentimental & nice. Somewhat out of character in fact.

Crucifyre - Kiss the Goat (from Kiss the Goat demo 2010)

Perfect old fashioned Satanic death metal; fun.

Frank Zappa – Fifty-Fifty (from Overnite Sensation, DiscReet 1973)
Completely over the top and silly and probably extremely hard to play.

Simon & Garfunkel – The Boxer (from Bridge Over Troubled Water, CBS 1970)
No amount of dodgy covers (from Dylan onwards) can ruin this masterpiece.

Black Sabbath – Behind the Wall of Sleep (from Black Sabbath, NEMS 1970)
Monumental atmospheric riffage with a Lovecraft-inspired title.
Neil Young – After the Gold Rush (from After the Gold Rush, Reprise, 1970)
Melancholy masterpiece from the end of the hippy era.

Cyndi Lauper - Money Changes Everything (from She's So Unusual, Portrait 1983)

Arguably the best song from her best album.

David Bowie - Soul Love (from Ziggy Stardust, RCA 1972)

Makes his current work seem as 'okay' as it really is.

Donovan - Catch the Wind (single, Pye 1965)

Lovely. Eartha Kitt did a nice version too, but it sounds creepier.

 Fen - Spectre (from Dustwalker, Candlelight Records 2013)

Great mellow song from excellent post-black metal album

James Taylor - Carolina in my Mind (from Sweet Baby James, Warner Bros 1970)

Wistful and lovely, even if (like me) you have no intention of going to Carolina

John Cale - Hanky Panky Nohow (from Paris 1919, Reprise 1973)

Another wistful song, but with a silly title

Orange Juice - I Guess I'm Just a Little Too Sensitive (from The Orange Juice, Polydor 1984)

Slinky, soulful and generally as great as its title suggests!

Morrissey - I'm Throwing My Arms Around Paris (from Years of Refusal 2009)

A lesser Morrissey single, but still great.

Eno - I'll Come Running (from Another Green World, Island 1975)

The perfect marriage of pop-Eno and ambient-Eno.

Miles Davis - Stuff (from Miles in the Sky, Columbia, 1968)

Bleak and beautiful

Pilot - January (from Second Flight, EMI 1975)

Appropriate and nice.

Rotting Christ - Cine iubeşte şi lasă (from ΚΑΤΑ ΤΟΝ ΔΕΜΟΝΑ Ε ΑΥΤΟΥ, Century Media 2013)

A beautiful interlude featuring early Greek music specialists Eleni and Souzana Vougioukli.

The Sadistic Mika Band; Style Is Changing (from Hot Menu, EMI 1975)

Strange bendy glam

Sabbat - Advent of Insanity (from Dreamweaver, Noise 1989)

The best produced and 'nicest' song on the classic album...


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