BEACH BUMMING (7/10)

Holiday cocktails are THE dog’s bollocks…..

mp3 : Various – Beach Bumming (Volume 7)

Track Listing

Man In The Corner Shop – The Jam
Victoria – The Kinks
Becoming More Like Alfie – The Divine Comedy
T-Shirt Weather – The Lucksmiths
Southern Mark Smith – The Jazz Butcher
Another Fit of Laughter – The Honeymooners
Can’t Be Sure – The Sundays
Typical Girls – The Slits
Something That I Said – The Ruts
15 Ways – The Fall
What a Waster – The Libertines
22 Grand Job – The Rakes
I Love a Boy in Uniform (School Uniform) – The Pipettes
Yoshimi Battles The Pink Robots Pt.1 – The Flaming Lips
Armageddon Days Are Here (Again) – The The
Oh Yeah – The Subways
I’m Stranded – The Saints
Apologies – The Orchids
Getting Nowhere Fast – The Wedding Present

JC

BEACH BUMMING (6/10)

In case any of you missed out on last week’s run of postings, I better explain that I’m currently entering week two of a holiday in tropical climes, but rather than close things down completely, I’m using Monday – Fridays to post some hour-long mixes made especially to listen to on the beach while keeping the usual couple of long-running series going at weekends.

mp3 : Various – Beach Bumming (Volume 6)

Track Listing

How He Wrote Elastica Man – Elastica feat Mark E Smith
Yuk Foo – Wolf Alice
Sweet Catatonia – Catatonia
French Disko – Stereolab
West End Girls  – Pet Shop Boys
No Scrubs – TLC
Might Be Stars – Wannadies
La Pastie de la Bourgeoisie – Belle and Sebastian
Quick, Before It Melts – Cinerama
Idiot Country – Electronic
Groovin’ With Mr. Bloe – Associates
Higher Grounds – Cats On Fire
Alcoholiday (Peel Session) – Teenage Fanclub
Duchess – The Stranglers
Landslide – The Popguns
Bye Bye Pride – The Go-Betweens
No Danger – The Delgados
Only Tongue Can Tell – Trashcan Sinatras
Paintball’s Coming Home – Half Man, Half Biscuit

JC

THE SINGULAR ADVENTURES OF PAUL HAIG (Part 10)

Heaven Help You Now was released on 7″ and 12″ on Les Disques Du Crepuscule in September 1985, with once again Alan Rankine involved in the production side as well as contributing keyboards.

It was the precursor to what would prove to be an excellent album, The Warp Of Pure Fun, the contents of which consisted of around half of what had been a proposed album which Island Records decided not to release, together with some newer material. As such, the album ended up being recorded periodically in five different locations and with different contributing musicians.

It’s another excellent, if very 80s sounding single, and its failure to get anywhere near the charts must have been a sore one for Paul to take, given that many inferior tunes and acts were enjoying fame and fortune:-

mp3 : Paul Haig – Heaven Help You Now (extended)
mp3 : Paul Haig – World Raw
mp3 : Paul Haig – Heaven Help You Now
mp3 : Paul Haig – Chance

World Raw (which was on both the 7″ and 12″) can be categorised under ‘experimental’ while Chance (only available on the 12″) sounds demo-like for the most part…and the version on offer today is the full near six minute take. Probably only of value to collectors.

JC

SATURDAY’S SCOTTISH SONG : #141 : HUMAN DON’T BE ANGRY

This review from The List magazine back in March 2012 sums it up best:-

In the bowels of a radioactive pop bunker somewhere between Glasgow and Falkirk, Malcolm Middleton has spent 18 months incubating a (super) heroic alter-ego.

We all thought we knew the mild-mannered Middleton – sublime melodist with Arab Strap; acclaimed creator of solo albums like A Brighter Beat and Into The Woods – but behind the smile and modest beard, there throbbed the fluorescent brain of an ambient 80s overlord. He was hatching a plan for interplanetary domination, as soundtracked by the Art of Noise, Tangerine Dream, Whitesnake and Top Gun, and his plotting has borne brilliant fruit in the guise of Human Don’t Be Angry.

From the gorgeous alt-MOR swell of ‘Monologue: River’ to the lambent riffs and glimmering krautrock of ‘First Person Singular, Present Tense’ – not to mention the discombobulating art-pop thrill of ‘1985’ – Human Don’t Be Angry is a captivating, drum-embracing beast. It is fortified by guitar-fuelled instrumental adventures (‘The Missing Plutonium’), Frankie Goes to Hollywood homages (‘After the Pleasuredome’) and a fitting widescreen leitmotif (‘HDBA Theme’).

While Middleton’s solo lyrics are typified by self-deprecation, Human Don’t Be Angry’s vocalisms are more forthright, driven and loved-up. ‘I’m coming your way,’ he threatens on the cosmic marital aria, ‘Asklipiio’. Human, gird thy loins.

It was a well-received work, one which made the ten-strong shortlist for the Scottish Album of the Year, but it didn’t sell anything near as many copies as his guitar-focussed albums.

mp3 : Human Don’t Be Angry – H.D.B.A. Theme

There was a follow-up effort, Electric Blue, released in 2015, which was available exclusively on vinyl via Malcolm’s website and limited to 500 copies.  I’ve got one and here’s a track from it:-

mp3 : Human Don’t Be Angry – Cottage Syndrome

One which starts off at a deceptively slow pace for an opening near two minutes before turning into something really inventive and infectious, including some great use of swear words around the five minute marks.  Kind of similar in places to the solo work of Steve Mason (Beta Band, King Biscuit Time). Trust me, it’ll grow on you!!

JC

BEACH BUMMING (5/10)

One week down.  One to go.  Friday nights tend to be a wee bit special round these parts.

Wish You Were Here.

mp3 : Various – Beach Bumming (Volume 5)

Track Listing

I Hope You’re Happy Now – Elvis Costello & The Attractions
Revenge of The Hammond Connection – Primal Scream
Penelope Tree – Felt
Truth Be Told – Dead Hope
Heard About Love – The Big Gun
Big Rock Candy Mountain – The Motorcycle Boy
Wonderful Lie – The Hardy Boys
Sparky’s Dream – Teenage Fanclub
Stars – Dubstar
Triple Trouble (Graham Coxon remix) – Beastie Boys
M.O.R. – Blur
Home – P.I.L.
Apply Some Pleasure – Maximo Park
Lullaby – The Cure
I Miss You – Blink 182
Shellshock – New Order
How I Wrote Elastic Man – The Fall

JC

BEACH BUMMING (4/10)

I’m nowhere near the above beach.  Indeed, i doubt the above beach looks that way in mid-December.

Today’s mix is, indeed, A Postcard from Scotland

mp3 : Various – Beach Bumming (Volume 4)

Track Listing

Bee – Hairband
Don’t Make Me Wait – Emma Pollock
The Shy Retirer – Arab Strap
Michael – Franz Ferdinand
Fall Forever – Honeyblood
Promised You A Miracle – Simple Minds
Gut Feeling – Malcolm Middleton
You Heald The World In Your Arms – Idlewild
No Longer Young Enough – The Just Joans
Fake Fur – Urusei Yatsura
Shimmer Shimmer – She’s Hit
Sore Tummy – PAWS
Taste The Last Girl – Sons & Daughters
These Animals Are Dangerous  – Rote Kapelle
Since Yesterday – Strawberry Switchblade
Blue Boy – Orange Juice
You Can’t Spend You Whole Life Hanging Around With Arseholes – Ballboy
Down The Dip – Aztec Camera

JC

BEACH BUMMING (3/10)

Oh look….it’s another reminder that I’m not around just now.

Today, I’m searching for hidden treasure.

mp3 : Various – Beach Bumming (Volume 3)

Track Listing

You Supply The Roses – Memphis
This Arsehole’s Been Burned Too Many Times Before – Nectarine No.9
Parks and Recreation – Emma Pollock
Youth Knows No Pain  – Lykke Li
Sister – Tracey Thorn feat. Corinne Bailey Rae
Primitive Painters – Felt feat. Elizabeth Frazer
I Walk The Earth – King Biscuit Time
Old Town – Say Sue Me
With Handclaps – Y’All Is Fantasy Island
Munich – Editors
Dream Sequence – Pauline Murray & The Invisible Girls
Love Is A Deserter – The Kills
Look At The Sky – Sons of the Descent
Surfing USA – The Jesus and Mary Chain
The Heinrich Maneuver – Interpol
Sweet and Tender Hooligan – Nouvelle Vague

JC

BEACH BUMMING (2/10)

Second of the hour-long mixes made especially to listen to on the beach this and next week.

Let me show you baby, I’m a talented boy 🙂 🙂 🙂

mp3 : Various – Beach Bumming (Volume 2)

Track Listing

Gett Off – Prince
Psycho Killer – Talking Heads
Paper Planes – M.I.A.
212 – Azelia Banks
Speak Like A Child – The Style Council
Rollercoaster by the Sea – Jonathan Richman
Breathe – The Prodigy
My Doorbell – The White Stripes
Shady Lane – Pavement
The Official Colourbox World Cup Theme – Colourbox
Blues for Ceausescu – Fatima Mansions
Push Upstairs – Underworld
What A Waste – Curve
The Sun A Small Star – The Servants
Don’t Ask My Name – Hangman’s Beautiful Daughters
Revolutionary Spirit – The Wild Swans

JC

BEACH BUMMING (1/10)

I’m off on holiday to tropical climes for the next 12 days. Rather than close things down completely, I’m going to use Monday – Fridays to post some hour-long mixes made especially to listen to on the beach while keeping the usual series going at weekends.

mp3 : Various – Beach Bumming (Volume 1)

Track Listing

Television, the Drug of the Nation – Disposable Heroes of Hiphoprisy
Sweetheart Contract – Magazine
April Skies – Jesus & Mary Chain
Know Who You Are At Every Age – Cocteau Twins
Deceptacon – Le Tigre
No Bulbs 3 (unedited) – The Fall
Nancy Boy – Placebo
Lee Remick – The Go-Betweens
Sick, Tired and Drunk – The June Brides
Ring Ring Ring (ha ha hey) – De La Soul
Protection – Massive Attack
Helicopter – Bloc Party
Orient Express – Port Sulphur
Do I Love You (Indeed I Do) – Frank Wilson
Geno – Dexy’s Midnight Runners
Crocodiles – Echo & The Bunnymen

Me, I’m all smiles.

JC

THE SINGULAR ADVENTURES OF PAUL HAIG (Part 9)

Recorded in 1982, but not released until 1985, this is arguably the strangest of the Paul Haig solo releases.

It had been laid down in the studio for Crépuscule in Brussels but, as was mentioned in earlier parts of this series, the licensing deal with Island led to a number of planned releases being shelved in favour of work commencing on Rhythm of Life.

A magazine interview given by Paul does throw some light on the thinking behind it all.

“After listening to lots of Sinatra records I became aware of these fantastic old songs. I think the music and the lyrics are absolutely incredible – especially the lyrics. The ‘swing’ side starts with The Song Is You, then All of You and Let’s Face the Music and Dance. The ‘dream’ side is Love Me Tender, The Way You Look Tonight and Send In the Clowns. I think the first side is around 1938, with songs by Cole Porter, Irving Berlin, people like that. The second side is slightly more modern.”

“The basic instrumentation on side one is just drums, double bass and piano, with the addition of string synthesiser on side two. We had to try about three sets of musicians before we found these old session musicians that had been playing jazz all their lives. The plano player must have been 70 years old! The drummer was quite young, in his mid twenties, so it was quite a challenge for him to keep pace with these brilliant jazz musicians, as it was for me too. I’m sure they thought it was a joke. I remember I turned up at the studio the morning they arrived. They said, ‘Are you the singer? The producer?’ They looked at each other in disbelief.”

As menationed at the outset, Swing in 82 belatedly emerged in 1985, but with with the original six tracks whittled down to five:-

mp3 : Paul Haig – The Song Is You
mp3 : Paul Haig – All Of You
mp3 : Paul Haig – Let’s Face The Music and Dance
mp3 : Paul Haig – Love Me Tender
mp3 : Paul Haig – The Way You Look Tonight

JC

SATURDAY’S SCOTTISH SONG : #140 : HUE AND CRY

A re-post from just five months ago….

Here’s a single which is kind of like a skeleton in my closet in that I don’t admit to many folk that I like it; indeed it is one I rarely play given nowadays given that I’ve never transferred it or anything else by the band onto the i-pod or i-phone.

Just as I’m finding it really hard to listen to anything involving Morrissey, so it has been for some 30 years with Hue and Cry. For those of you who perhaps aren’t familiar with the group, (which I imagine will be the case with almost all the non-UK readers), it is basically a duo, formed by brother Pat Kane (vocals) and Greg Kane (everything else!) in the mid-80s.

After a debut single in 1986 on a small Glasgow-based independent label, they came to the attention of Virgin Records who signed them to a subsidiary label Circa for whom there was immediate success which was sustained for a few years with a number of chart singles and two albums which went Top 20. They were incredibly popular in Scotland, emerging at a time when a number of others acts across the country were embracing that late 80s big-sounding production with big vocals and big social statements to match, selling out much bigger venues up here than anywhere else.

It soon became apparent that Pat Kane was never going to be content with being a mere pop star.

He made use of his fame to promote himself as something of an intellectual, penning newspaper columns and appearing on television programmes in which he never shied away from airing what he considered to be left-wing credentials. He was also a very strong advocate for independence for Scotland and, to be fair, his arguments and viewpoints did make for interesting reading, gaining more than enough traction to ensure his success when he stood in an election in 1990 for the post of Rector at Glasgow University, which in effect is the highest office that can be held by a non-academic person at that particular seat of learning.

There was seemingly nothing on which Pat Kane didn’t have an opinion, and there was seemingly nothing on which his opinion was wrong. I don’t think I was alone in growing very bored of him very quickly, switching the telly over any time he appeared and completely by-passing any articles I came across in any newspapers. There was an arrogance about him that jarred and, looking back, it is clear to see that he was one of the first ‘champagne socialists’ who would rise to power in later years, albeit at the UK level of politics rather than in Scotland.

All of this made it tough to enjoy his music anymore, but to compound things, he and Greg announced that having enjoyed the rewards from two hit albums they were now going to embrace their lifelong love of jazz, which was my cue to bail out entirely.

Hue and Cry are still on the go today and Pat Kane still has something of a profile as a journalist and political activist but I continue to pay no attention.

But….and this came from looking deep for stuff that might go down well at the Simply Thrilled night(s)….there’s no denying that the duo did write and record an absolute belter of a radio-friendly tune back in 1987:-

mp3 : Hue and Cry – Labour of Love

This was the second single lifted from the debut album and it climbed all the way to #6 in the UK charts. It’s big, bold and brassy with a defiant message. Yes, it could be interpreted as a break-up song with someone telling their other half that the love they had endured for seven years was now over; but let’s not kid ourselves – this was very much an open letter to a right-wing government which was causing havoc to so many communities, including many in and around where the Kane brothers had been brought up. If Billy Bragg had penned this lyric, we’d be still celebrating it as genuine classic.

JC