lovely lovely music

Its been a month since my last confession post, and that’s primarily due to nothing happening of a technical or computery nature that’s worth commenting on. Other stuff still happens, as you naturally expect of stuff, because that’s what stuff does; it happens. But a blog with eight posts over five months is a dusty old thing waiting to pop its clogs, and sure I can’t be having that. So, to keep myself entertained, I’m broadening the remit here to cover pretty much anything that I feel like vomiting onto the page.

When I was a young fella, well past the point of being about knee-high to a grasshopper but still every bit as green as I was cabbage-lookin, Nirvana released Nevermind, and I was totally blown away. I listened to my pirated copy of that album day and night. A taped copy it was, because this was back in the day when kids had neither money nor internet, when, if you had outgrown climbing trees for the craic, you drank cheap cider down by the river. Anyway, I loved Nevermind, I used it as some sort of self-definition; I became a grunge kid with jeans that were more holes than substance and long hair that never suited me. But these were wild times, and in the early nineties magic things were happening in music, Detroit and Sheffield exploded with new types of electronic music and the whole Manchester thing was still going and then there was Massive Attack and Portishead and the Bristol sound, there was the rise of The Prodigy and The Chemical Brothers and Orbital. So, even though I never stopped loving Nevermind, it did get pushed to the side a little, which was no bad thing because after two years it was time to move on.

Now, sixteen years or so later, I have a new favourite album, Radio Scarecrow by The Black Dog. It feels weird to have a favourite again, like having a best mate again that’s not the missus, a proper best mate for getting drunk with and having conversations that are really competitions of foul-mindedness. Its great though, I had fallen into the belief that to get really passionate about one particular record when there are so many other great works out there was the stuff of youth and teenageyness; turns out that’s a load of auld bollocks. I got the album about a year ago, sadly too late to get it on vinyl (limited edition run of only 250, the selfish bastards) and I have probably listened to it every day since. I’m listening to a live recording of it now, in fact. Its savage. The follow up album, Further Vexations, which I did manage to get on vinyl (limited edition run of only 500, the marginally less selfish bastards) has a track called Northern Electronic Soul, and I reckon that is a fairly bang-on description of both albums. Its electronic, hell, its techno, but it has got soul like nothing out there. Beautiful stuff. I wont try to describe music with words, but anybody that genuinely loves music would be doing themselves a shocking disservice if they let this album slip by without a listen.
Further Vexations is great too, but I doubt that It can knock Radio Scarecrow off the top spot, I’ll do a retrospective in a year or something when the dust has settled and I’m not so brutally biased.

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