FREE MUSIC: Chicago's The Metasciences do delicate storytelling lo-fi folk/antifolk (who really knows what the difference is any more?) with male/female variating vocals, and they're giving away the whole of their 2005 album Pencils Down. We'd recommend starting with comic-inspired Four-Color Love Story.
HEY YOU GET OFFA MYSPACE: It almost seems too perfect, this, but after a week accidentally devoted to the likes of Kenickie we've discovered Pete 'Johnny X/J Xaverre/Meet Eric Roberts' Gofton's new project, George Washington Brown. It pretty much picks up where J Xaverre's excellent 2003 These Acid Stars album left off - quirkily anthemic home brew lo-fi symphonics, full of surprises and neat tricks, sounding simple and intricately worked at the same time, like Jonathan Donahue holding Damon Gough at gunpoint in the Shins' studio.
VISUAL REPRESENTATION: As you'd expect from such a fervently followed singer, Kate Bush is all over YouTube. Here's three at random - the stuff of Alison Goldfrapp's dreams/nightmares enacted for Ran Tan Waltz on her celebrated 1979 Christmas special, The Wedding List at the 1982 Prince's Trust Gala Concert featuring Pete Townshend, Midge Ure Phil Collins and Gary Brooker (and nearly a costume-related surprise for all concerned) and the woman herself making a rare TV appearance on Swap Shop in 1978 and royally embarrassing the camera crew.
VIRAL MARKETING: It feels like the build-up to new material from MIA has been going on for years, such has been the weight of hints and purposeful leaks. One such of the latter is supposed first single Bird Flu, so called because, according to Maya's Myspace blog, "THIS BEAT GON KILL EVERYONE!" It's certainly bringing the tribal drums to her avant riot-baile ahead of Kala, released in America at least on June 26th or August 21st, depending on who you believe.
FALLING OFF A BLOG: See, the problem we have is while there are many great blogs we want to bring to your attention, very few of them ever really work to a theme so the best you can say is 'great music, great writing, inventive choices - go on, then, and we won't rest until their referrer stats URL turns up in our referrer stats'. At least Pretending Life Is Like A Song has the foresight to leaven the, well, great music with comedy and spoken word, currently including Pete & Dud, Mark Thomas and the inevitable Kurt Vonnegut.
And while we think about it, Skatterbrain has interviewed Ali Howard of Lucky Soul, The Torture Garden having already taken care of Andrew Laidlaw.
EVERYBODY GET RANDOM: Writer mostly on computer games and often of greatness Stuart Campbell may have got his Songs To Learn And Sing contribution in several days late (he uploaded it to his own site instead), but we still fully endorse his work. Even when he points out to us that he trumped our last Covermount effort in retrospect when he managed to get 100 songs into a CDR length compilation, Big Songs For Little Attention Spans. And not once, but twice.
IN OTHER NEWS: So Truck sold out in three days (yes, we did, thanks), but by no means is that it for independently minded leftfield festival action. The fine people of Indie Tracks have two events coming up. On Saturday 28th April they've hired a steam train on the Midland Railway Centre, Ripley, Derbyshire and they're putting on DJs, a disco carriage and bands Pocketbooks, Slow Down Tallahassee and Tottie, at least one of whom we'll be covering in a Myspace fashion in the near future. Then on the weekend of 28th-29th July the same location is being used as transport to the site of the Indie Tracks festival, 24 bands on two stages including Bearsuit, The Orchids, The Bobby McGees, MJ Hibbett & The Validators, Persil and Rose McDowall (of Strawberry Switchblade, then associate of assorted avant-garde ne'er do wells, now solo psych-folker). £40 until the end of this month, £45 hence.