FREE MUSIC: So we reach SXSW week, the time of year when all the A&Rs and label heads in the world can be found within a half mile stretch of each other. Luckily it also serves its purpose for this bit, its purpose this week being an exclusive track from ex-Delgado Emma Pollock. Limbs is a fragile acoustic/piano number that marks it out from what she's done before at the same time as it reinforces her abilities.
HEY YOU GET OFFA MYSPACE: There's so much Swedish pop of the highest quality about that you barely know where to start any more. Like a vulnerable, lovelorn, ultimately likeable gender reversal version of The Boy Least Likely To and not a million miles away from compatriot Jens Lekman, Hello Saferide is/are among the more blog-critically acclaimed of the new Scandinavian wave, essentially Stockholm's Annika Norlin bringing the sharp self-effacing sense of lyrical humour to personality sketched sunshine don't-say-twee acoustic pop. Her album, Introducing Hello Saferide, has been around since 2005 yet doesn't appear to have been picked up in the UK yet except on import. If you ask us, someone needs to sort out a Swedish release label in the same way as there are two or three Scand-only live club nights around the place, because there's an untapped market on the rise here.
VISUAL REPRESENTATION: Comic Relief draws round again, which as regular readers will have guessed is all the excuse we need to do something special around here. Well, it'll be more entertaining than the evening. Nowadays it's all ill judged covers by the popular outfit of the day, but in days of yore you'd get proper comedy, like Cliff Richard and the Young Ones and Bananarama 'with' Lananeeneenoonoo, alongside your usual dross which at least wasn't focused on the act rather than the comedy like Hale & Pace's The Stonk, apparently uploaded after being left on a radiator for some time. You'll also notice that to make them even more out of place these have all been uploaded by international fans, as has this Australian news report on Living Doll's success which takes some explaining. Neil went on to take on, literally, Top Of The Pops with Hole In My Shoe, and from here we can just descend into list and link frenzy on the topic if you like. Right. Loadsamoney, on Friday Night Live, introduced by an excitable Ben Elton, with William Orbit in the background. The Shirehorses' Country Spouse. Spitting Image's Chicken Song. Alexei Sayle's Ullo John Gotta New Motor. The Goodies doing A Man's Best Friend Is His Duck on Top Of The Pops. And, as if by local byelaw, Stonehenge.
VIRAL MARKETING: Maximo Park's Our Earthly Pleasures has been written about as their American alt-rock album, due to Gil Norton's control presence. There's elements, as well as the electronically charged stuff, in Our Velocity, but Spin giveaway track Your Urge tells a notably different tale.
FALLING OFF A BLOG: Even in this saturated blogger's market aA few young start-ups are really worthy of attention at the moment, and here's another one - Hell Is Chrome kicked off a couple of weeks ago and has already found room for a TV On The Radio BBC session, live Jenny Lewis and the contractual obligation Los Campesinos! post. This week: promised exclusive new material from Jetplane Landing. Colour us excited.
EVERYBODY GET RANDOM: Time for a roundup of label downloads and, in the case of Too Pure, blogs, although they've got an exclusive material 'cast too. It's all vCasts round here now you can buy iPods with screens on, which are all well and good but don't actually seem to work when played on actual PCs half the time, so take your chances with Bloc Party, Patrick Wolf (those two the latest in multipart series), Bat For Lashes and The Cribs. Herman Dune evidently can't afford a digicam, so that's audio only. We don't think we've yet mentioned the latest Transgressive podcast with Jeremy Warmsley and Mechanical Bride in the studio, so let's do that now.
IN OTHER NEWS: Regular readers will know we've featured ADD electroindiefolker Pagan Wanderer Lu before, and we even strongarmed him into contributing to Songs To Learn And Sing. He's now relocated to Cardiff, home of just about everybody we've ever mentioned in Weekender, and our attention has been drawn to the home-made album Hospital Radio Hits that he's giving away for free. These are some of his earliest demo PWL works so perhaps best not to approach these first, but there's definite echoes of genius/madness to come in them.