THE JOY OF (a mixed) SEX (duet) : Couple #4

Anyone fancy a little bit of S&M ??????

J’aime l’odeur de ta peau le matin
Elle m’excite et je veux avoir mal
Lit chaud. air froid
Ton regard affam me brûle, et j’ai besoin de sentir plus
Le sang sur tes ongles me fait peur
Mais malgr tout je veux que tu restes
Je suis meurtrie et corche, et je devrais souffrir
Mais tu me retiens et
Tout me paraît bien
Je t’en prie, crois-moi quand je te dis “ne me quitte plus”
Tout ce que je veux faire c’est tre couche tes côts
Ici dans ce lit

I love your flirting
And I love your fingers
And I love your boots
And I love your sigh

I love your murmur
And I love your freckles
And I love the way
You say “goodbye”

I love the smell of your skin, in the morning
It excites me, and I want to feel sore
Warm bed, cold air, your hungry stare
Delights me, and now I need some more

I love your scratches
And I love your teasing
And I love your sweat
And I love your voice

I love your riddles
And I love your shivers
And I love your curl
And I love your toys

And seeing blood on your nails just never fails
To appal me, but i still want you to stay
I’m bruised, I’m cut, it ought to hurt, but
You enthral me, and that makes it okay

And please, just believe me, when I say “don’t ever leave me”
Because lying here beside you, is all I want to do

The smell of your skin, in the morning
Excites me, and I want to feel sore
Warm bed, cold air, your hungry stare
Delights me, and now I need some more

Blood on your nails just never fails
To appal me, but I still want you to stay
I’m bruised I’m cut, it ought to hurt, but
You enthral me, and that makes it okay

I love your stubble
I love your navel
I love your frown
I love your heels

I love your lipstick
I love your biting
I love your tongue
And the way it feels

I love your letters
I love your phone calls
I love your hips
Your naked wrists

I love your stories
I love your sisters
I love your tears
I love your breasts

I love your whispers
I love your dancing
I love your thirst
I love your lies

I love your tantrums
I love your perfume
I love your teeth
Your big surprise

I love your bleeding
I love your mischief
I love your eyes
Those things you said

I love your temper
I love your trembling
I love to lie
Here in your bed

I love your stubble
I love your navel
I love your frown
I love your heels

I love your lipstick
I love your biting
I love your tongue
And the way it feels

I love your letters
I love your phone calls
I love your hips
Your naked wrists

I love your stories
I love your sisters
I love your tears
I love your breasts

I love your whispers
I love your dancing
I love your thirst
I love your lies

I love your tantrums
I love your perfume
I love your teeth
Your big surprise

I love your bleeding
I love your mischief
I love your eyes
Those things you said

I love your temper
I love your trembling
I love to lie
Here in your bed

David Gedge and Emma Pollock have rarely sounded better, on this bonus track on the CD version of the single Kerry Kerry, released in 1998.

mp3 : Cinerama – Love

The song is credited to Gedge/Womack. I’ve never been able to find out why and have long assumed that orchestral intro is sampled from something written by either Bobby or Cecil Womack. Anyone got a definitive answer?

(Just realised that I’ve started and ended this posting with questions!!!!!!)

JC

THE JOY OF (a mixed) SEX (duet) : Couple #3

Tindersticks have long been the masters of the great duet, with the baritone and velvety style of vocalist Stewart Staples just lending itself perfectly to contributions from a wide range of female companions on record. There have been a number of such recordings over the years, most of which have reflected on the inability of couples to get on.

One of their earliest releases, in 1993, was A Marriage Made in Heaven, on which there was a guest appearance from Niki Sin, from the English riot grrrl band Huggy Bear, while a later version of the same song featured the Italian actress Isabella Rossellini.

Carla Togerson, from the American indie-folk band The Walkabouts, was mournful on Travelling Light on the band’s second album released in 1995; the next album (Curtains, 1997) saw American actress Ann Magnuson join in on Buried Bones and then, in 2003, possibly what had been, up to then, the best of the duets thanks to the wry and observant contribution by American vocalist Lhasa de Sela

mp3 : Tindersticks – Sometimes It Hurts

And then in 2016, this appeared on the album The Waiting Room:-

mp3 : Tindersticks  – Hey Lucinda (featuring Lhasa de Sela)

This was something really unexpected as Lhasa had passed away, at the tragically young age of 37, back on New Year’s Day 2010 after a near two-year battle with breast cancer.

Stuart Staples, in an interview in 2016, provided an explanation:-

“When I first wrote the song, I was very excited because I broke a kind of stricture.”

“From ‘Islands in the Stream’ to Lee [Hazlewood] and Nancy [Sinatra], duets have been written the same way. The man sings a bit, the woman sings a bit, they sing the chorus together. In ‘Hey Lucinda,’ the music follows the conversation rather than the conversation being fit into the song structure. I went to Montreal, where Lhasa lived, and sang it with her, and it sounded great, but I was struggling—it was too linear, and when it feels too easy I don’t trust it. Soon after that, Lhasa became ill and we lost her, and I had to put the song away.”

“It took three or four years before I could listen to her music again, but I heard it then as a lost moment between two people rather than the song I’d been struggling with. I was able to feel the music in a very different way. Turns out it just needed a glockenspiel.”

Wow.

JC

THE JOY OF (a mixed) SEX (duet) : Couple #2

Some seven years after bursting onto the scene and being labelled as one of the key members of the ‘shoegazing’ scene, Lush released an album that was a real surprise and delight.

Lovelife hit the shops in March 1996. It came on the back of two ridiculously catchy singles, Single Girl and Ladykillers, that had raised the profile of the band to a new height. It was as indie-pop (of its time) as could be, with catchy choruses and hooks amidst rhythmic guitars that demanded you get on the floor and dance. It would become one of the defining releases of the Britpop era, and unlike many others, it has dated very well. One of its many highlights is this:-

mp3 : Lush (featuring Jarvis Cocker) – Ciao!

This was a time when many scenesters were namechecking Lee Hazelwood as an influence, often mentioning his duets with Nancy Sinatra as being among their favourite songs when they were growing up. Miki Berenyi and Jarvis Cocker really do channel their Nancy and Lee desires with a magnificently bitter song in which the two protagonists are absolutely delighted the relationship is finally over, both wondering why it took them so long and choosing to exit by throwing poisonous barbs at one another before the sign-off:-

Well, I’ve been in heaven since I walked away
I never thought that I could feel as great as I do today
‘Cause you were nothing but a waste of space
And life is wonderful now that I’m over you

It would have made for a great single but maybe Lush were a bit concerned they would be accused of jumping on the Pulp bandwagon as it was the period when the latter were enjoying, (if that’s the right word given what they did next), unprecedented chart success with Top 10 singles and millions of sales for the album Different Class.

As it turned out, when the time came, in 2001, for 4AD to release a ‘Best Of’ for Lush, it was decided to name the album Ciao! and to include it in the tracklisting.

JC

THE JOY OF (a mixed) SEX (duet) : Couple #1

It’s a busy time for me just now, so this week will see five very short posts, all dedicated to bringing you the joy of a mixed-sex duet, the first of which will feature two singers brought together especially for the purpose while the others will see someone come in and guest with the band.

mp3 : Deborah Harry and Iggy Pop – Well, Did You Evah!

A song which was written 80 years ago by Cole Porter, initially for the Broadway musical DuBarry Was a Lady, it is best known from its inclusion in the 1956 hit film High Society, in which it was sung by Bing Crosby and Frank Sinatra.

Fast forward to 1990 when the Red Hot Organization, a not-for-profit international organization with the aim of using pop and entertainment to dedicated to fighting AIDS, decided that the first of its efforts should be Red Hot + Blue in which modern-era pop stars did cover versions of Cole Porter songs. It was the a fine idea and for the most part it worked well, with something for everyone within its 20 tracks.

Deborah and Iggy are clearly having a swell and elegant time on this one. It’s fun with a gigantic capital F. The lyrics are reasonably similar to that written all those years by Cole Porter, but there’s a fair amount of hamming improvisation as well that just adds to things, with digs at LA scenesters, a ridiculous amount of flirting between la Harry and le Pop and the final sign-off where the man in the leather trousers is told to sling his hook.

Most of the songs on Red Hot + Blue had specially shot promo videos thus enabling the album to be promoted as a documentary feature on television stations the world over.

This particular promo was the work of Alex Cox, the UK director who had made a name for himself in the 80s initially through the cult classic Repo Man (for which Iggy Pop had supplied the title track) and then at the helm of Sid and Nancy, the biopic that told a version of the tale of Sid Vicious and Nancy Spungen.

JC

THE SINGULAR ADVENTURES OF (EARLY) SIMPLE MINDS (Part 6)

Last week’s posting took us up to April 1981 and Arista Records very belatedly releasing Celebrate despite the fact Simple Minds were now part of Virgin Records and in the studio recording their next album (part of the deal to enable the band to leave Arista was an agreement that the songs from the era of the first three albums stayed behind with the band losing control).

One month later, the first 45 under the new arrangements hit the shops:-

mp3 : Simple Minds – The American
mp3 : Simple Minds – League of Nations

It wasn’t part of the original plan to release anything on Virgin as early as May 1981, but there was a great deal of anger and resentment about what Arista had done in issuing Celebrate, as well as the fear that a further single could be issued at any point in time. It was about drawing attention to the fact Simple Minds had moved on and were, again, exploring and recording slightly different sounds in the studio. The American was one of the earliest tracks to be completed that was felt had some sort of commercial potential and so it came out on 7” and 12” vinyl. The band, however, were still very busy in the studio with new producer Steve Hillage and there was no time available to shoot any promo video, a situation that hindered getting maximum exposure for the new song.

It’s a single I fell in love with immediately. It fitted in perfectly with the increasing popularity in electronica dance here in the UK, and was a piece of music that sounded equally as good coming out of your radio as it did blasting through the speakers at the under-18s disco I frequented at weekends. It’s one that, nowadays, certainly in its 12″ form sounds just a little bit more dated than others – a mix which at the time seemed almost revolutionary now sounds very gimmicky and of its time – and this is perhaps a reflection of it being rushed a bit so as to be in the shops. One of the things I most loved, and still do about it, is Derek Forbes‘ bass playing bring such a tribute to that of Barry Adamson from his Magazine days.

The b-side was a new, near-instrumental number which showed that the band were still capable of making atmospheric almost experimental music amidst the new more pop-orientated approach.

The American didn’t really trouble the charts, reaching only #59.

JC

SATURDAY’S SCOTTISH SONG : #169 : JULIA AND THE DOOGANS

Confession time.

Today’s song is one that I’ve downloaded from somewhere else many years ago, listened to once and promptly forgotten all about.  What follows are some words I’ve cobbled from pieces in the local media back in 2009:-

Julia and the Doogans are:

Julia Doogan – Vocals, Guitar, Banjo
Alan Daly – Vocals, Guitar
Ian Clyne – Bass
Carolann Mullin – Flute
Jennifer Hamilton – Piano
Renata Pilikinaite – Cello
Tadas Labudis – Drums

Gritty Glasgow’s sectarian rivalry would seem like the unlikeliest of subject matter for a multi-instrumental folk project, but in a delicate, winsome song that is their home city’s namesake Julia and the Doogans have managed to achieve just that.

The local seven-piece – who count flute, cello and banjo among their instrumental roster – have been winning over fans across the city in the past few months with their quietly charming repertoire.

Julia Doogan is the honey-voiced songstress behind the project – who, despite the name’s familial illusions, aren’t all related. “The name’s been kicking about for a while – it was something a college lecturer came up with on the spur of the moment back when introducing another band I was a part of, and it’s just stuck as time has went on,” she explains.

“At first, the band came about because I wanted a band to back my music but as time has went on it has evolved into much more,” she adds. “The reason we all do it is because we enjoy music. We also bring out the best in each other creatively, and have a good time together as both musicians and friends.”

The band’s original line-up (Julia on vocals, guitar and banjo with Alan Daly on vocals and guitar, Renata Pilikinait on cello, flautist Carolann Mullin and Tada Labudis on drums and percussion) have performed together for just under a year, with additions along the way in the form of Jennifer Hamilton on piano, and Ian Clyne on bass.

The band count “melody-driven” bands and artists such as Aberfeldy, Sufjan Stevens and Angus and Julia Stone among their influences, as well as “everyday life, and a lot of people-watching!”

Big fans of their peers in the local music scene, Julia says: “It’s a good place to be starting out like we are – everyone we meet is really supportive and the more you get into it the more it becomes a bit like an office Christmas party, where everybody knows or knows of each other and just has a good time.”

Of their “organic” sound, Julia says: “A few of us are more classically trained than others and we all have an appreciation for orchestral instruments and music.

“I don’t think we are massively unique but we aim for simplicity with every song.”

The band are “concentrating on playing shows and being creative” at the moment, with shows planned at the Captain’s Rest, King Tut’s and a live session for Glasgow PodcART on the agenda for October and November – but Julia promises “more writing and recording” ahead.

mp3 : Julia and The Doogans – Glasgow

Might end up playing it early doors at a future Simply Thrilled night…….

JC

A REPOST OF AN ICA : THE CURE

A GUEST POSTING by TIM BADGER

Where do you start when writing an Imaginary Compilation Album on a band who have roughly twenty albums worth of material to choose from? There are studio albums, live albums, singles albums, B sides albums, remix albums and countless live albums worth of stuff, all of which are worthy of consideration.

For instance there is somewhere in existence a bootleg release of The Cure’s MTV Unplugged Show in which one of the band plays a toy piano throughout ‘Close To Me’ – it is far better than any version of that song that has ever been commercially released and yet can I find it on the Internet, no I can’t. I know that the Lovely Angela had a version of it because I remember listening to it in her bedroom whilst she made me a Vodka Collins.

An hour before I sat down to write this I had narrowed it down to 43 songs which is nowhere near short enough. Then my wife comes in and asks how I was getting on – me having shut myself away for a few hours to do it and so I told her.

She sighs, and tells me and I wrote this down word for word – “If you stop your silly Goth boy reminiscing over ‘the Lovely Angela’ (she included the finger quote thing) and actually thought about it you would realise that you only actually need to own six cure albums – ‘Seventeen Seconds’, ‘Japanese Whispers’, ‘The Head On The door’, Kiss Me, Kiss Me, Kiss Me’, ‘Disintegration’ and ‘Wish’. There’s a cup of tea on the table there for you“ and with that she turns around and walks back out of the room.

Now, after a number of years of marriage I have learnt not to argue with Mrs Badger, particularly where ‘the Lovely Angela’ is concerned, so I reflect on her statement and I immediately stop the silly Goth Boy Reminiscing and then I focus and I remove all the tracks on my list that are not from one of the six albums she mentioned and unbelievably I am left with 12 tracks, and losing two is pretty easy.

So with no further ado, here at last is the compilation on The Cure.

Side One

Just Like Heaven (from Kiss Me Kiss Me Kiss Me)

Kiss Me Kiss Me Kiss Me was the sixth Cure album and is if you had to list them probably their second greatest album. This was the Cure in the pomp, comedy lipstick, massive hair and it slowly took them into a world of arenas and festival headlights. I am duty bound to include this what with it being played at my wedding, but also it has to be included because it is simply a delight and one of the greatest singles of all time.

Play For Today (From Seventeen Seconds)

In the very early eighties, The Cure went a bit weird and after drinking too much they sort of invented Gothic Rock or rather they sort of redefined Gothic Rock. They did this by recording an album in a cupboard on a shoestring budget. This result was this spooky, minimalist masterpiece and ‘Play For Today’ is epitome of that stark, elegant and probably best listened to in front of a smoke machine whilst dressed in black.

Doing The Unstuck (from ‘Wish’)

I love ‘Wish’, I think between say 1987 and 1995 the Cure did very little wrong. They sashayed between being mopey doom mongers to being gloriously playful pop superstars and ‘Wish’ gets that spot on. There is a bit on ‘Doing The Unstuck’ in which Bob sings “Its Never too late to get up and GO!” the ‘Go’ bit is almost shouted. For millions around the world, when Bob Smith was happy, pretty much all was well in the world.

Let’s Go To Bed (from ‘Japanese Whispers’)

After three gloomy goth albums, the Cure resurfaced in late 1982 with ‘Let’s Go To Bed’ a terrifically upbeat single in which they appeared to have abandoned the doom and bought a trumpet. The result was outstanding. Lovecats soon followed and The Cure cemented themselves as rocks biggest bunch of teasers.

The Same Deep Water As You (from ‘Disintegration’)

‘Disintegration’ is of course, the Cure’s best album. It is a Goth masterpiece. There is more relentess imagery of death and drama here than anywhere else. It is full of eight minute songs (or ten in this case) about drowning and at times it is unbearably sad. But push that to one side (gently, it’s fragile) and it is an album of such beauty and emotion that you really cannot ignore it. ‘The Same Deep Water As You’ is I think the stand out track hypnotic, sad, shimmering and beautiful.

Side Two

Open (from ‘Wish’)

‘Wish’ is the last truly outstanding Cure album. ‘Open’ is the first track off that and kind of sets the scene for the rest of the album. The songs here are big and designed for the arenas that they were easily filling by now. This song is a reflective look back at drinking and in it Smith’s vocals just get wilder and wilder.

Pictures of You (from ‘Disintegration’)

The story goes according to my wife that shortly before The Cure recorded ‘Disintegration’ a fire broke out at Smith’s house. In the damage he came across a collection of photos of his wife and that inspired this song.

For me I love it because of these lyrics

“Remembering you standing quiet in the rain, As I ran to your heart to be near/And we kissed as the sky fell in/Holding you close/How I always held close in your fear.”

Well it’s just beautiful isn’t it.

In Between Days (from ‘The Head On The Door’)

Another track that is truly wonderful and for years and years was the ring tone on my phone for whenever Mrs Badger phoned me. It’s just one of those songs that I will never tire of hearing.

Shiver and Shake (from Kiss Me Kiss Me Kiss Me)

Another reason why Kiss Me Kiss Me Kiss Me is so glorious is the way it fluctuates from being wonderfully happy to being dramatically sad before at the (near) end, you get this the angriest, bitterest, most shouty song that The Cure ever recorded. Also in the really angry bits Bob sounds a little bit like Kermit the Frog and that is worth hearing.

Sinking (from ‘The Head On the Door’)

Let’s end on a happy note, or rather lets end with a lush murmuring sigh. A song that lives up to its name, it kinds of descends with every note, and that break near the end, its just beautiful.

So there we have it. An ICA on The Cure, eventually and if that doesn’t win the next ICA World Cup then something is wrong with the world.

TIM