Sunday, July 01, 2007

In shops tomorrow: 2/7

Singles

There doesn't appear to be a reason why 4AD are putting out another single from TV On The Radio's Return To Cookie Mountain, especially as few of the tracks from it really work on their own. It was our album of 2006, though, so the post-apocalyptic shoegazing gospel with Bowie on backing vocals of Province on 7" is very much worthy of your attention. It's funny to think that Interpol have become a bona fide influence given how before Turn On The Bright Lights landed in the UK they were best known as being 'a bit like Joy Division'. Much as everyone now seems down on them, The Heinrich Maneuver is a classically Interpol PDA/Slow Hands-style statement of much the same intent as before but a reminder nonetheless of what they do. You pretty much know what the Go! Team do too, but it's a lot more difficult to copy or categorise. Just another too cool for school B-girl blaxploitation horn-driven soundtrack, that's Grip Like A Vice. It's interesting that, assuming their current O2 supports for Snow Patrol don't amount to much, the Twilight Sad have taken off in America more readily than they have in Britain, the Scottish-accented Arab Strap gone shoegaze near-stadium size sound not being the first thing you'd think of as Triple A Alternative material. And She Would Darken The Memory Of Youth comes on 7" from the grower that is Fourteen Autumns And Fifteen Winters. The Indelicates label themselves "despicable folk-rock cabaret with a mission to end all music", which makes their friendship with Art Brut (Eddie's in the video to this and we're not sure they're not in the new Direct Hit clip) and namedropping of Luke Haines make perfect sense. Inevitably opinion splitting to the last, Simon Indelicate, Julia Indelicate and three people not surnamed Indelicate - we see - take another scabrous sideswipe at modern pop culture and those who follow it on second proper single Julia, We Dont Live In The 60s. We'd mention the band Julia used to be in with a raised eyebrow at this point, but that's exactly what they'd expect us to do. The Hold Steady give Chips Ahoy! another go on 7", the Concretes do fairly well without Victoria on Oh Boy and The New Hot Chip, as nobody calls them yet, Fujiya & Miyagi, make a break for the summer dance music took its revenge with Uh.

Albums

There's a certain unevenness with Chemical Brothers albums nowadays, Push The Button containing anthems that were harder edged than the party starting of yore and, well, not much else to write home about. We Are The Night seems to have taken the psychedelic route of much of their best material, with Klaxons, Midlake's Tim Smith and Willy Mason helping out and Ali Love hindering out. Forever doomed to be subject to sniggers about religious sects, the Polyphonic Spree soft launch The Fragile Army in black smocks and Sections now running up to 32. There are hints of darkness, but it's mostly the usual joy to the world, something rarely apparent, at least at face value, in Steven Adams' darkly sardonic songs for The Broken Family Band. Hello Love puts a rocket up their alt-country mores. Candidate have long been indie-folk's best kept secret, largely because Joel and Alex Morris have been busier with their Framley Examiner and Bollocks To Alton Towers/Far From The Sodding Crowd projects. Oxengate still sounds like lo-fi Americana's take on Fairport Convention. The once hotly tipped The Crimea famously made their second album Secrets Of The Witching Hour available for free, but presumably the accountants' predictions came back to them so their decidedly opportunity-missing collection is now out in shops. There may be American underground-influenced bands formed in the last ninety years who don't owe a debt of gratitude to Sonic Youth's Daydream Nation, but they must be very dull people. Every home that takes in this welding of the famously dissonant, oddly tuned Youth sound to tighter song structures is a good home - it's good Teen Age bloody Riot on it! - and now you get a single stripped down demo of Eric's Trip and an album of contemporary live tracks, one unreleased, and covers of the Beatles, Captain Beefheart, Neil Young and Mudhoney. Blondie's third album Eat To The Beat was issued in 1979 along with, for the first time ever, a VHS featuring a video for every track on the album, which EMI have only just thought to transfer to DVD and attach to a remastered album, the stars of which are Atomic, Union City Blue and Dreaming. At much the same time Howard Devoto was making a very different sort of art-pop in Magazine, and when they split he followed the path of their funkiest, least commercial sound in 1983 solo debut (and indeed swansong) Jerky Versions Of The Dream. Really funky, in a hard edged way, we find the Stax archive rarity crate-digging project up to its fifth volume, in other words 5000 Volts Of Stax.

DVDs

Given the budget and the enormous hall venue, the Dresden Dolls were never going to do things by halves, and as such The Dresden Dolls: Live At The Roundhouse features Amanda, Brian and troupes of avant-garde dancers, vaudevillians, circus performers and so forth.

3 comments:

Dead Kenny said...

Sorry to be pedantic, Simon, given the usually indefatigable feast of blogging goodness you've yet again provided, but -

Eat To The Beat was Blondie's fourth album*, following self-titled, Plastic Letters and Parallel Lines. A much under-rated record, too, in my view - 'The Hardest Part' being one of the more sadly neglected numbers in their back catalogue.

*I only know this because I'm very, very old, if that's any consolation.

Anonymous said...

Hey Simon, The Crimea's album Secrets of the Witching Hour is still available for free and in shops so I think your criticism is slightly misplaced.

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