About Ed

Music fan by instinct

A song for today #31: Aphex Twin

Aphex Twin

Richard D. James, better known as Aphex Twin, will release the Cheetah EP on Warp on July 7.

The tracklisting for the EP is as follows:

1.CHEETAHT2 [Ld spectrum]
2.CHEETAHT7b
3.CHEETA1b ms800
4.CHEETA2 ms800
5.CIRKLON3 [ ????????? mix ]
6.CIRKLON 1
7.2X202-ST5 (Digital Bonus Track)

A video for the track ‘CIRKLON3 [ ????????? mix ]’ has been unveiled, the first music video for an Aphex Twin track since ‘Windowlicker’ in 1999. It was directed by Ryan Wyer, aged 12, from Co. Dublin. The video contains visual motifs similar to the Aphex Twin videos directed by Chris Cunningham in the 1990s, and the track shows an influence of computer games…

A song for today #30: John Grant, Budgie and Kylie Minogue

I’ve always rather enjoyed seemingly incongruous musical meetings. And thus it came to pass that earlier this week, John Grant with Budgie (former drummer for Big in Japan, the Slits and Siouxsie and the Banshees/The Creatures) were joined on stage by Kylie Minogue for a performance of ‘Glacier.’

I came across this in the Siouxsie and the Banshees facebook group – many thanks to Costas who edited this from four versions and shared this. Of course, it’s not the first time Kylie has collaborated with artists from seemingly more leftfield backgrounds than hers – the Pet Shop Boys, Manic Street Preachers and of course, Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds


BUDGIE with JOHN GRANT & KYLIE MINOGUE… by zoot1969

The return of the Avalanches

I recently returned from a trip to Australia (as I may have mentioned). Whilst I was there I picked up various new artists I hadn’t heard before, and when in Melbourne checked out quite a few record shops. Melbourne apparently is expecting several new record shops to open this year. I couldn’t resist asking the folks running the stores if they knew anything about a new Avalanches record. And all I got in return were wry smiles.

But now I’m back on the other side of the world, and the Avalanches have announced that they will release their second Wildflower on July 8. This is a mere fifteen years since their debut Since I Left You, which was both a critical and commercial hit in 2001.

The first single from the album is ‘Frankie Sinatra’ which suggests – in the best possible way- that the band have picked up where they left off, in terms of producing catchy songs using cut and paste approach to music and making weird and wonderful videos.

The single features contributions from Danny Brown and MF Doom, as well as sampling ‘My Favourite Things’ from The Sound of Music. The album will also feature contributions from Jennifer Herrema, Warren Ellis and Father John Misty, amongst others.

Dr. Robert

Dr. Robert

Dr. Robert, of solo and Blow Monkeys fame, has just released his latest solo album. His tenth solo album is entitled Out THere and you can stream it below.

A few years back, I got the chance to interview him – he rang me from his home in Spain, around the time of the Blow Monkeys’ album Feels Like A New Morning. You can read that here.

A song for today #29: The Strokes

str

Strange to think it’s now 15 years since The Strokes appeared. Back in 2001 they had an impact on not only the NME scene but also on the charts, making an impact with their debut Is This It.

Whilst other guitar bands that came in their wake may have reached greater commercial heights – Kings of Leon and White Stripes – The Strokes still have a big fan base, deservedly so, on the basis of their first new track for three years ‘Oblivius.’

It’s the lead track on their new EP Future Present Past, which as well as ‘Oblivius’ also includes ‘Drag Queen’ and “Threat of Joy’, plus a remix of ‘Oblivius’ by the band’s Fab Moretti.

More details on ordering the EP, which will be released on June 3, can be found here

The return of Kid Canaveral

Kate Canaveral

I’ve long championed Kid Canaveral on this blog – and interviewed them around the time of their first album Shouting At Wildlife.
The band are shortly to release their third album Faulty Inner Dialogue on July 29 on Lost Map Records, and are touring before the release of the album, with the launch taking place at Edinburgh’s Summerhall on July 30 (more details about the album launch and live dates here.

This is the video for the first single ‘First We Take Dumbarton.’

This is the album teaser video:

Presenting…Lucy Roleff

lucy5

Well, I was off in Australia, and it was fabulous. As always, I try to discover new music while I’m travelling, and maybe I’ll do a post on some of the stuff I heard whilst I was out there.

One email I got when I was in Melbourne was from a Melbourne-based label called Lost and Lonesome. One of the emails I received was of one of their artists called Lucy Roleff.

According to her biography, she is ‘a classically trained, lyrical-folk songstress from Melbourne. Born to a German Opera singer father and Maltese mother, she spent a childhood steeped in ornate European classical music, storytelling and folk styles.’ For all I know, this may not be true, but it makes for more interesting reading than playing on the X-Box and hanging out at the mall, right? ‘Aspen’ is taken from her debut album This Paradise, out on July 15. She produces folk music that has nothing to do with the ‘it’s acoustic so it must be folk’ likes of the beard-strokers by numbers, but instead comparisons could be drawn with the likes of Joanna Newsom, Nick Drake and Cowboy Junkies’ Margo Timmins.

This is one of the best things I have heard this year.

The video is spectacular, too

This is her first EP, Longbows, released in 2013, which is also rather lovely:

Yes, I’m still here!

wire-nocturnal-koreans

It has gone uncharacteristically quiet on the 17 Seconds front. Not because I stopped caring or writing, but simply because I went away on holiday for a few weeks. Australia, since you ask – and it was bloody fantastic.

So there will be more music reviews and whatnot to follow, in the meantime, check out the review I wrote of Wire’s most recent album Nocturnal Koreans, which was printed over at Is This Music?

Album Review – Ben Watt

Ben Watt

Ben Watt -‘Fever Dream.’ (Unmade Road)

…warmth.

That’s the thing that hits you first about Ben Watt’s third solo album. He’s made so many records and diverse ones over a career now into its fourth decade, and not so much dabbled as embraced many styles over that time. Yet what they all have in common is the ability to produced music that connects with the heart.

There’s no question that for many he’s the male half of the excellent Everything But The Girl duo with wife Tracey Thorn. While she sang lead vocals on many tracks, he took lead on a few – ‘The Night I Heard Caruso Sing’ from 1988’s album Idlewild is one of the best songs in their catalogue, for example. And even before he formed EBTG, he was working with his hero Robert Wyatt.

And that’s perhaps the starting point for this album. It’s not that this is a record that sounds retro, but rather it connects with the likes of Wyatt and other artists of a similar pedigree: Richard Thompson, John Martyn and Nick Drake. It’s hard to pick a standout track, because it’s one very impressive whole, but perhaps album opener ‘Gradually.’ Or maybe ‘Winter’s Eve’. Ask me when I play this album yet again and I might give you yet another answer.

An excellent album, that benefits from repeated listens, each one bringing you further into its charms and its…

Fever Dream is out now