CHART OF DARKNESS: will no longer appear on Weekender. Well, not only was it holding this up week after week waiting for the full details to emerge but it's going to be impossible to keep salient track of now everything ever released (pretty much) counts towards it. Rest assured that chart act sarcasm will continue to be posted to STN. One question for the time being - how come Jay-Z and Linkin Park's Numb/Encore has always been up the sharp end of the download list, officially re-entering at 64 and doubtless comfortably outdoing both originals by some distance? Let's not even go near I'm Gonna Be (500 Miles) at 92.
FREE MUSIC: You know we're Anathallo fans round here, so when we heard they were making a conjunctive EP with Page France for release this year it got us moving. Moving to Google to find out who Page France is/are, mostly (well, some of our favourite blogs have covered them in the past but we're not always quick in following the money, despite appearances) In fact they're a Maryland outfit that evolved from a solo project of singer and songwriter Michael Nau who have been responsible for two albums of endlessly fascinated, exuberant acoustic led, glockenspiel garnished, Shins-esque, sometimes Sufjan comparable folkpop. Their most recent album, Hello, Dear Wind, was given a full US release in September, from which comes Junkyard.
HEY YOU GET OFFA MYSPACE: New year, new disco-punk. Montreal's Creature take their cue from Talking Heads at their most unnervingly scratchy and add liberal amounts of Prince pop-funk, Rapture party jams and the tightly wound neo-post punk dub of much sampled garage-funk pioneers 23 Skidoo and Liquid Liquid. They will, we're sure, bring the groove.
VISUAL REPRESENTATION: Apparently, and we only have others to go on for this as we keep missing it, The Vault, one of the Chart Show TV stations on Sky Digital (356), is repeating actual old Chart Shows on Saturday mornings, with Thursday dinnertime repeats. A fantastic concept, worthy of a great chunk of whatever it is that Sky are now purging from us monthly. In YouTube terms one JamesTV2001 has uploaded some corking old programmes, all in multipart, so these links are to part one and you'll have to follow the sidebar on the right hand side to continue watching the 1986 end of year special, the September 1988 show that ended its Channel 4 run with a divine Indie Top Ten where the Wedding Present top a pile of PWL and rave singles, one from 1989 immediately before it became the ITV Chart Show and the final Chart Show ever, from 1998 which includes a demonstration of the exact production decision that finally saw it clear the shark when they started interviewing bands in front of their videos. Someone else has in the meantime stepped up with the 1989 retrospective.
VIRAL MARKETING: Neon Bible, March 5th! Well, we're excited.
FALLING OFF A BLOG: With the blogosphere increasing at a hitherto unseen rate we're pretty sure that by the end of January we'll have a list of music blogs to recommend that will last us until the Mayan apocalypse year of 2012. So let's make a start with Dirty Bronson, who clearly know what they like and whose second most recent post having a pop at bloggers who post aggregated Best Of lists and Christmas songs we're willing to overlook.
EVERYBODY GET RANDOM: We appreciate this is pretty much a starting position for any UK alternative music blogger worth their salt, but Patrick Wolf's The Magic Position will, unless people forget, be in top tens come December, it's that good. Building up to its February 26th release he's at the helm of a series of six podcasts, four of which have been uploaded to date. It's not the enigmatic Wolf we're used to, but each one includes a specially recorded live performance.
IN OTHER NEWS: We mentioned a while back that Dandelion Radio had taken up the mantle of the official Festive 50, and throughout this month they're playing out the whole rundown in five hour chunks at midnight and 4pm on odd numbered days in January and 8am on even numbered days. Licensing restrictions and our own tardiness means we can't give anything away, but we're assured it's a chart that would do the great tradition proud.