Tuesday, 28 December 2010

My Albums of the Year 2010

Spotify playlist:
2010 Albums of the Year - tracks by malkovichmalkovich.com
My best 15 albums released in the last 12 months were those I feel I will be listening to in years to come; as well as having been on heavy rotation already. In no particular order.

Titus AndronicusThe Monitor (XL)

Related - The Replacements, Bruce Springsteen, The Pogues, New Jersey.

Titus Andronicus – Theme from "Cheers"

Thee Oh SeesWarm Slime (In The Red)

Related - Ty Segal, Coachwhips, San Francisco.

Track - Mega-Fest

YeasayerODD BLOOD (Secretly Canadian)

Related - Talking Heads, El Guincho, Brooklyn.

Yeasayer – Ambling Alp

El GuinchoPop Negro (Young Turks)

Related - Japan (band), Ryuchi Sakamoto, Manu Chao, Barcelona.

El Guincho – Bombay

Archie Bronson OutfitCoconut (Domino)

Related - Led Zepplin, Talking Heads, the West Country.

Archie Bronson Outfit – Chunk

HEALTHDISCO2  (Lovepump)

Related - Boards of Canada, Crystal Castles, Andrew Weatherall, LA.

Health – USA Boys

Best CoastCrazy For You  (Mexican Summer)

Related - Drugstore, Thee Headcoatees.

Best Coast – Crazy For You

SlugabedUltra Heat Treated EP  (Planet Mu)

Related - Rustie, Warp, Aquacrunk, Brighton.

Slugabed – Quantum Leap

Crystal Castles - Crystal Castles ( II ) (Fiction Records)

Related - HEALTH, Warp, 8-bit.

Crystal Castles – Birds

Wild NothingGemini (Captured Tracks)

Related - My Bloody Valentine, The Smiths.

Wild Nothing – Summer Holiday

Related - Foot Village, Fugazi, King Tubby.

Islet – Ringerz

Abe VigodaCrush (Bella Union)

Related - Depeche Mode, Interpol.

Abe Vigoda – Crush

Prince - 20ten (The Daily Mirror?)

Related - Rick James, Funkadelic, Alicia Keys

Track - Beginning Endlessly

Marnie Sterns/t (Kill Rock Stars)

Related - Kate Bush, Sleater-Kinney, Zach Hill.

Marnie Stern – Gimme

Pantha Du Prince - Black Noise (Rough Trade)

Related - Burial, Warp, Alice Coltrane.

Pantha Du Prince – Abglanz

Bubbling Under

Japandroids - No SinglesLiarsSisterworld,  WarpaintThe FoolLes Savy FavRoot for Ruin

Sunday, 31 October 2010

Vinyl shopping in Brighton and other assorted things

I visit Brighton regularly for the fresh air and and company. Even though I was pretty skint I justified a mini record shop spending spree because I was out of town and by the sea and other dubious reasons. Strap yourself in for this ... after the traditional stroll on the seafront.

Somehow I can't ever recall going to Rounder Records, so I went here first.

There was a busy Saturday atmosphere. I only managed to locate the hip hop section and bought this little gem, mainly because it was £3 and had a great album cover. Obviously the Public Enemy connection helped. The Professor is a bit nuts though as fans will know.

Then we went to Borderline which seems to have changed much focusing more on cds then vinyl bargains so we didn't hang around. Next to Resident which is bit more up my street featuring a good, yet pricey, selection of vinyl from medium profile artists.

Having then decided that Rounder was the best place for my needs we went back for it's cheap mix of mainstream and underground artists. This time there was much more room and I located the indie section immediately finding a £7 Action Beat album in blue vinyl. That's what happens when you start browsing alphabetically. After this discovery I didn't look as hard because there was just too much and we needed a sit down by this point.

With this purchase in the bag we made our way to the nearest cafe. It was then I realised I was bleeding. I had fallen victim to "vinyl browser finger death"!

A small price to pay for a satisfying record hunt. We also stopped in Wax Factor below and another second hand place that I forget, just so we could call ourselves completists.

Here are some other Brighton retail highlights, no purchases just aesthetic curio:

Brighton is an arty expressive place. Here's the evidence.


Wednesday, 27 October 2010

Music to Study to

Recently I've started a MRes Global Politics degree at Birkbeck, University of London which requires a huge amount of reading. A great excuse to post a photo of the beautiful building containing the fourth floor Senate House Library. As a student you can register here as well as the multi-floor university library.

Obviously the studying requires a lot of critical reading. Therefore I have to switch my playlist away from more vocal dominated artists who interfere on my fragile concentration. The artists who bang on about how they're not in love or in love or whatever. Drums > Lyrics.

Here are some academic friendly suggestions:

The Books - "Lost & Safe"

It's not much of a coincidence that such a playlist contains an artist called The Books. This duo make music that resembles a student art project, in the nicest possible way. Classical strings, glitchy beats, looping folk and random dialogue from what seems like dismembered radio and TV shows collide and beguile at once.

Oneida - "The Wedding"

Another great album from the ex-nineties rock band. It seems they can turn their hand to anything from the psych pop in High Life to medieval revery in August Morning Haze. Vocals feature on some tracks but not instrusively. Possible vinyl magic!

mum - "finally we are no one"

Lush etheral vibes from mum's orchestral electronica. More human noises rendered abstract in Icelandic; thus facilitating the contemplation of post-colonial free trade.  Accent on the 'u'? Still working out how to do it.

Mark Hollis - s/t

Formerly of Talk Talk whose Spirit of Eden is also great. Very soothing with a classical jazz quality through beautifully played instruments including trumpet, piano, double bass and drums. Not heard an album as intimate.

In fact talking of jazz, Miles Davis' - ESP is a pleasant listen while mulling over the merits of a mixed-method approach to a social research case study.

Thursday, 16 September 2010

A Decade of Independent UK Guitar Noise

Since arriving, Dick Whittington-style in London during Prince's favourite year, I've tried to go to as many gigs as money and time allows. My North American-centric taste (possible future post on why) means that artists coming from these shores have always struggled for my attention. Tellingly local acts often play second fiddle to prestigious transatlantic visitors at London gigs and in the media.

Having attended my friends' Hired Geeks all dayer, I revisited some good old UK guitar noise types. Here is a list of my favourites:

Charlottefield (1999-2008)

Featuring the greatest drummer I've ever seen live, Ashley Marlowe. They mix punk and post-rock to visceral effect. [ p o c k e t s ] supported them on New Year's Eve 2006.

Billy Mahonie

Named after a character in Flatliners, they had been going for a few years when I encountered their . Dusseldorf was the first post-rock disco single ... in my room.

That Fucking Tank (1991? - present)

These krautrock kids come from Leeds and they've recently added elements of techno and prog to their sound. Unfortunately I couldn't see them standing far back at the alldayer so I'm not certain whether they were wearing their trademark masks or outfits although the photo suggests it was a more sober affair this time round.

Part Chimp (2000-2010)

These rock bonobos have been doyens of the UK noise scene delivering solid albums and pummelling live shows throughout their lifespan, sadly ending soon. After many line up changes the originals probably felt it was time.

Giddy Motors (now Poino)

Despite being one of only about four people to own their first album on release I never saw these sickos but Poino carry on their legacy with menacing frontman Gaverick, the fulcrum of the twisted trio. Drumming also amazing.

Thursday, 19 August 2010

DIY Music Festival Alert

London DIY music promoters Upset The Rhythm put on their eqivalent of ATP in March of last year. Replace the veteran indie gods with a roster of underground British acts, the Butlins with an old car showroom; add homemade food, a non-profit bar and video installations and you there. Talking of video ...

It was busy and obviously a success so they went and they did it again last weekend, perhaps to honour the upbeat festival name YES WAY. They kept the name and added another evening on Friday but Saturday was our chosen era.


Golden Grrrls


School Tour

Hype Williams

Fair Ohs