At the end of last year we mentioned that The Boy Least Likely To's oddly effective Sarah Records-country-dance world had been absorbed into 19 Management's Fullerific world and they'd soon be all over the place. So what's happened around their first 19 single Be Gentle With Me? A Smash Hits Party Best New Band nomination, or whatever it was, a feature on Popworld at the end of January and that's it. Clearly this is a more softly softly approach then we'd anticipated. We saw them live last night, which we'll expand upon over at the Myspace blog on Wednesday - look, it has to be there for a reason - but suffice to say a good hoedown time was had by all. Elsewhere we find Giant Drag fulfilling their controlled noisy potential on This Isn't It, psych-pop that's definitely more Benson than White on the Raconteurs' Steady As She Goes and, oh yeah, Who The Fuck Are the Arctic Monkeys?, which apparently Alex Turner has had to defend from allegations they're ripping off their fans. Ripping them off? A five track EP with four new songs? If the Beatles had been releasing non-album singles only these days there'd be riots!
Firstly, we now understand Transgressive Singles Compilation Vol.1 is out this week. If you spent the last week fruitlessly searching for it in shops and online, join the club. Plenty of other stuff out this week, led by Gnarls Barkley's St Elsewhere, as eclectic as most of Danger Mouse's other production work ranging from sunshine pop to psychedelic soul to an electro Violent Femmes cover. Tom Verlaine, last seen sitting about at the back of the stage while Patti Smith was up front, releases his first new material in fourteen years and doubly so, as Songs And Other Things is a jangly, near-AOR effort that perhaps deliberately doesn't sound a lot like Marquee Moon while Around is purely instrumental. Richard James follows Gorky's bandmate Euros Childs into the lo-fi acoustic solo arena on The Seven Sleepers Den, an arena presided over for long periods by Jonathan Richman, who quietly releases an album we know nothing about called Fly Into The Mysterious. There's a new series of Stax Profiles out wherein an expert on each of the great soul label's main acts has curated a compilation of their work, chiefly Otis Redding compiled by the label's house guitarist Steve Cropper and his own Booker T. And The MGs overseen by Elvis Costello, whose Brodsky Quartet collaboration The Juliet Letters is back out in a remastered form. Less artistic, possibly, but welcome back to the shelves Denim's Back In Denim, a glam rock revival record that gave the glam rock decade and just about everything else in pop culture a good shoeing. Lawrence is apparently in a very bad way these days so could do with the royalties.