Saturday, 11 April 2015

The Shit - Some Shit That Ain't Too Shit

Wednesday, 17 September 2014

The Music - Elvis Costello & Rihannon Giddens' ‘Married to My Hack’

I got a pedal to hit and an engine that won't quit

It's the nice animated vid for Elvis Costello and Rihannon Giddens with “Married to My Hack,”; the first taster for the upcoming T-Bone Burnett-helmed “Lost on the River: The New Basement Tapes”.

The Bob Dylan project “Lost on the River: The New Basement Tapes” involves numerous notable artists 'completing' and interpreting unfinished songs from the legendary Dylan/Band sessions from 1967. Check out the artists and songs in the tracklist below ....

Featuring a collective of musicians recording under the moniker The New Basement Tapes -- artists like Elvis Costello, Rhiannon Giddens, Taylor Goldsmith, Jim James and Marcus Mumford - the album consists of a series of tracks based on recently uncovered lyrics handwritten by Bob Dylan in 1967 during the period in which he created is noted album The Basement Tapes.

The project started when Burnett was contacted by Dylan's publisher regarding a box of handwritten lyrics that had been found, dating back to Dylan's Basement Tapes days, and asked if he had any interest in doing something with them. As soon as Burnett was assured that Dylan was on board with the project, he agreed to it. Burnett selected his band based on their talent and collaborative style, as well as their interest as "musical archaeologists." 

Each member of the group was sent the collection of lyrics, and each arrived at recording session with a selection of tunes, some having set only some of the lyrics, others having set all of them. Not wishing to encourage competition, the group decided to record all the tunes, including multiple settings of the same lyrics. Of the resulting 40 tracks, 20 are included on the present album

The just shy of two-minutes tale of marital resignation,‘Married to My Hack’, features Costello on lead vocals and Carolina Chocolate Drops’ Giddens on backing duties.

Elvis channels Dylan's croaked spoken-blues as Rihannon moans and scats over a  blistering ramshackle junkyard symphony that would make Tom Waits crack a crooked smile.

“Married to My Hack”, as well as “Nothing to It”, are availabel as instant downloads for preorders on Amazon.

On November 21st, Showtime will air a special documentary about the making of the album.

Directed by Sam Jones, “Lost Songs: The Basement Tapes Continued,” documents the making of the record and explores Dylan’s original sessions with the Band.

Meanwhile, on November 4th, Legacy Recordings will release “The Basement Tapes Complete: The Bootleg Series Vol. 11” - a six-disc collection of the legendary Dylan/Band sessions, offering an astounding 138 tracks.

Tracklisting -- “Lost on the River: The New Basement Tapes”

Vinyl Side 1
 No. Title Writer(s) Length 

1. "Down On The Bottom"   Bob Dylan, Jim James 4:29
2. "Married To My Hack"   Bob Dylan, Elvis Costello 1:57
3. "Kansas City"   Bob Dylan, Marcus Mumford, Taylor Goldsmith 4:04
4. "Spanish Mary"   Bob Dylan, Rhiannon Giddens 5:31
5. "Liberty Street"   Bob Dylan, Taylor Goldsmith 2:45

Vinyl Side 2
6. "Nothing To It"   Bob Dylan, Jim James 3:32
7. "Golden Tom - Silver Judas"   Bob Dylan, Elvis Costello 2:39
8. "When I Get My Hands On You"   Bob Dylan, Marcus Mumford, Taylor Goldsmith 3:10
9. "Duncan And Jimmy"   Bob Dylan, Rhiannon Giddens 4:10
10. "Florida Key"   Bob Dylan, Taylor Goldsmith 3:19

Vinyl Side 3
11. "Hidee Hidee Ho #11"   Bob Dylan, Jim James 4:45
12. "Lost On The River #12"   Bob Dylan, Elvis Costello 3:42
13. "Stranger"   Bob Dylan, Marcus Mumford 4:22
14. "Card Shark"   Bob Dylan, Taylor Goldsmith 2:36
15. "Quick Like A Flash"   Bob Dylan, Jim James 3:17

Vinyl Side 4
16. "Hidee Hidee Ho #16"   Bob Dylan, Rhiannon Giddens, Elvis Costello 3:51
17. "Diamond Ring"   Bob Dylan, Taylor Goldsmith 2:54
18. "The Whistle Is Blowing"   Bob Dylan, Marcus Mumford 5:10
19. "Six Months In Kansas City (Liberty Street)"   Bob Dylan, Elvis Costello 3:36
20. "Lost On The River #20"   Bob Dylan, Rhiannon Giddens, Marcus Mumford 3:47

Tuesday, 16 September 2014

The Art - Crash In and the Crash Out

The waves crash in and the waves crash out. The wind blows the air and my thoughts fly about and I know I would call you if ever I could, but the wind takes its toll.

Moments In Time - Mesmerising Mannequin

 This bloke's clearly impressed by a Village of the Giants mannequin!

Art of the Cover - "Pillows & Prayers: Cherry Red Records, 1981 - 1984" Box Set

What a fucking sublime 4-Disc, Box Set here from the mighty Cherry Red label. All beautifully presented too.

The magnificent four disc (3 CDs + 1 DVD) 25th Anniversary Edition Pillows & Prayers: Cherry Red Records, 1981 - 1984 Box Set offers a fantastic snapshot of the surge of creativity that surrounded pioneering label Cherry Red at the start of the '80s  .... an all-embracing collection of records that are achingly hip, lovably gauche, and bizarrely enduring. 

The original 'Pillows & Prayers' compilation album was released in the early 1980's & went on to top the Indie Chart, spending almost a year in the top 30. To this day it is still one of the most acknowledged releases from the label.

The set features early recordings from many pioneering and distinguished artists, including Everything But The Girl, Eyeless In Gaza, the Monochrome Set, Ben Watt, Tracey Thorn, Felt and many others. 

The three CDs contain a total of 53 tracks including rarities previously unavailable on CD. 

On the wonderful DVD , Cherry Red Records release, for the first time ever on DVD, the visual accompaniment to one of the label's most recognized musical titles 'Pillows & Prayers'. The Pillows & Prayers video was released a few years after the album and provides the main focus of the DVD. Many of Cherry Red's most popular acts are featured, including Everything But The Girl, Eyeless In Gaza, The Monochrome Set & the Marine Girls.

There are also three bonus tracks, not included on the original video release (Medium Medium 'Hungry So Angry', Eyeless In Gaza 'Veil Like Calm', & Monochrome Set 'Jacobs Ladder'). Special features include an interview with 'Pillows & Prayers' 'originators' Iain Mcnay & Mike Always, plus a gallery featuring classic Cherry Red Records album artwork.
The set is issued in a small cardboard box containing individual replica sleeves for each disc along with a 48 page booklet.


Gotta go way back to the early '80s when I had this on vinyl, an import copy no less. Oh, what wonders this album unleashed! It brought a whole new world of music to my ears, to my mind; new tunes beyond any genre classification. It was "new" music, but it wasn't new wave, or alternative, or grunge, or dance. It was just good. Very, very, very good.  
Imagine hearing these artists for the very first time on one album: Felt, Everything But the Girl, Eyeless in Gaza, Kevin Coyne, Nightingales, and Tracy Thorn and Ben Watt as solo artists. 
Toss in a bunch of "no-name" wonders, and mind-blowing spoken word perfomances by Attila the Stockbroker and Quentin Crisp and you have a classic; a wondrous, influential collection of tunes from the Cherry Red vaults. 
And ... while looking at this album listing online, I suddenly notice that there is now a 3-CD version of "Pillows and Prayers" out there. Do I want to hear more? Even after all these years, the answer is a most emphatic "Yes." Time for another order ... 
-- By Donald E. Gilliland


Pillows & Prayers 1 (Cherry Red Records 1982-1983) - Vol.1
CD1-1 –Five Or Six Portrait 2:48
CD1-2 –Monochrome Set, The Eine Symphonie Des Grauens 2:17
CD1-3 –Thomas Leer All About You 3:46
CD1-4 –Tracey Thorn Plain Sailing 1:59
CD1-5 –Ben Watt Some Things Don't Matter 4:20
CD1-6 –Kevin Coyne Love In Your Heart 2:52
CD1-7 –Piero Milesi Modi 2 (Extract) 1:02
CD1-8 –Joe Crow Compulsion 4:18
CD1-9 –Marine Girls Lazy Ways 2:42
CD1-10 –Felt My Face Is On Fire 3:04
CD1-11 –Eyeless In Gaza No Noise 2:49
CD1-12 –Passage, The XOYO 3:53
CD1-13 –Everything But The Girl On My Mind 3:08
CD1-14 –Attila The Stockbroker A Bang And A Wimpy 1:41
CD1-15 –Misunderstood, The I Unseen 1:58
CD1-16 –Nightingales, The Don't Blink 3:59
CD1-17 –Quentin Crisp Stop The Music For A Minute 1:01
Pillows & Prayers 1 (Cherry Red Records 1982-1983) - Vol.2
CD2-1 –Marine Girls A Place In The Sun 2:29
CD2-2 –Jane It's A Fine Day 2:45
CD2-3 –Kevin Hewick Feathering The Nest 3:51
CD2-4 –Fantastic Something If She Doesn't Smile... 3:14
CD2-5 –Eyeless In Gaza New Risen 2:47
CD2-6 –Monochrome Set, The Jet Set Junta 2:04
CD2-7 –Morgan Fisher Un Homme Et Une Femme 2:45
CD2-8 –Felt Penelope Tree 4:15
CD2-9 –Maurice Deebank The Watery Song 4:54
CD2-10 –In Embrace Shouting In Cafés 3:33
CD2-11 –Grab Grab The Haddock I'm Used Now 3:17
CD2-12 –Ben Watt & Robert Wyatt Walter And John 4:05
CD2-13 –Five Or Six Another Reason 3:04
CD2-14 –Red Box Chenko 3:30
Our Brilliant Careers (Cherry Red Rarities 1981-1983) - Vol.3
CD3-1 –Five Or Six The Trial 6:17
CD3-2 –Ben Watt Cant 3:19
CD3-3 –Ben Watt Tower Of Silence 1:57
CD3-4 –Ben Watt Aubade 0:57
CD3-5 –Reflections, The 4 Countries 2:03
CD3-6 –Reflections, The The Coroner & The Inquest 4:50
CD3-7 –Nightingales, The Inside Out 3:04
CD3-8 –Nightingales, The Under The Lash 2:19
CD3-9 –Everything But The Girl Feeling Dizzy 4:15
CD3-10 –Five Or Six This Is For The Moment 2:10
CD3-11 –Five Or Six Think 4:46
CD3-12 –Five Or Six Rushes 2:24
CD3-13 –Five Or Six Theme 3:59
CD3-14 –Nightingales, The My Brilliant Career 3:20
CD3-15 –Nightingales, The Son Of God's Mate 4:21
CD3-16 –Joe Crow Absent Friends 4:03
CD3-17 –Monochrome Set, The The Bridge 3:07
CD3-18 –Tracey Thorn Goodbye Joe 2:30
CD3-19 –Fantastic Something The 1,000 Guitars Of St. Dominiques 3:00
CD3-20 –Kevin Hewick 'Neath Dancing Waves 1:50
CD3-21 –Kevin Hewick Tender Bruises & Scars 0:54
CD3-22 –Red Box Valley 4:43
Pillows & Prayers - The Cherry Red Video (Cherry Red Records 1981-1984 DVD) - Vol.4
DVD-1 –Marine Girls A Place In The Sun 3:12
DVD-2 –Jane (4) It's A Fine Day 5:19
DVD-3 –Kevin Hewick Feathering The Nest 4:22
DVD-4 –Fantastic Something If She Doesn't Smile... 5:39
DVD-5 –Eyeless In Gaza New Risen 3:16
DVD-6 –Everything But The Girl On My Mind 4:17
DVD-7 –Monochrome Set, The Jet Set Junta 2:44 
Bonus Tracks 
DVD-8 –Medium Medium Hungry So Angry 4:00
DVD-9 –Eyeless In Gaza Veil Like Calm 1:50
DVD-10 –Monochrome Set, The Jacobs Ladder 3:54 
Plus Bonus Material: 
DVD-11 –Iain McNay and Mike Alway Interview With Pillows & Prayers 'Originators' Iain McNay And Mike Alway 43:52
DVD-12 –No Artist Gallery Featuring Classic Cherry Red Album Artwork

The Art - The Boxer

Art of the Cover - Thelonious Monk's "Brilliant Corners" (2014)

"Brilliant Corners" may well be considered the alpha and omega of post-World War II American jazz. No serious jazz collection should be without it."
--Lindsay Planer  ... Allmusic

Brilliant Corners is remarkable for bringing together musicians who had established themselves as major jazzmen in their own right and yet gave everything on this date to make an album that from the outset would reflect Monk's peculiar musical world. Perhaps it is Monk's most enduring masterpiece.

The title piece is one of the single major works in the jazz canon. It proved so difficult to play that 25 separate cuts had to be spliced together to produce the final piece. Sonny Rollins was the tenor saxophonist on the date and leading guest musician.

As a teenager, Rollins had rehearsed alongside Monk. His contribution to "Brilliant Corners" was devastating: he acquired a feel for the unusual structure of the piece -abrupt changes of tempo, bombast followed by bathos, sudden diabolical runs, jumps into double time- and became Monk's voice through a horn, while retaining the unmistakeable Rollins attack. And all this drama was held together by the polyrhythmic adaptability of Max Roach, who had played so magnificently with Rollins a few months earlier on Saxophone Colossus.

The rest of the album contains the eccentric blues "Ba-lue Bolivar Ba-lues-are" (which appears on numerous early 1960s discs, including Monk's Dream, Columbia, 1962), the first recording of "Pannonica", written for the wealthy jazz-lover Pannonica "Nica" de Koenigswarter, in whose New York apartment Charlie Parker had died the year before, "Bemsha Swing", first recorded by Monk in 1952 and on this occasion featuring Duke Ellington's chief trumpeter Clark Terry, and a solo reading of "I Surrender, Dear".

This is an essential modern jazz album.

By Ricard Giner


1. "Brilliant Corners"   7:42

2. "Ba-Lue Bolivar Ba-Lues-Are"   13:24

3. "Pannonica"   8:50

4. "I Surrender, Dear" (Barry Harris) 5:25

5. "Bemsha Swing" (Thelonious Monk, Denzil Best) 7:42

The Art - Loosening my grip, wading in the water, just trying not to crack under the pressure

The Still - Pole Cat

Olivia Wilde gets it on in Jim Field Smith's Butter (2011)

The Shot - Cocktail Hour


Mojo Working - What a Night!

Arching her back

The Shot - As I Lay Me Down To Sleep

Bae caught me sleeping

The Shot - Coffee Break


Be Your Mirror - Madame Helga's folly

The Art - I've watched you on the shore, standing by the ocean's roar

Moving Models - Next Door Nikki

The Shot - The Turquoise Dress

The Art - Holy Bubbles, Batman

Moving Models - Juicy Jenna Jenovich


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