The return of Muse


Muse will return with their fifth studio album, The Resistance, in September.

Ten years since their debut Showbiz, the bits that have surfaced on the internet so far suggest that they are continuing to evolve and progress. Two tracks currently doing the rounds are album opener ‘Uprising’ which evokes ‘Atlas’ by Battles, and ‘United States Of Eurasia’ which has Queen-type harmonies and backing vocals.

The tracklisting (for those of you who haven’t seen it already!) is as follows:

‘Undisclosed Desires’
‘United States Of Eurasia (+Collateral Damage)’
‘Guiding Light’
‘Unnatural Selection’
‘MK Ultra’
‘I Belong To You (+Mon Coeur S’Ouvre A Ta Voix)’
‘Exogenesis: Symphony Part I (Overture)’
‘Exogenesis: Symphony Part II (Cross Pollination)’
‘Exogenesis Part III (Redemption)’

Yup, a three-part symphony makes up the final three tracks of the album. Normally, this would ring alarm bells for me, but on the strength of Muse’s first four studio albums, I’m intrigued.

These have surfaced on YouTube. (Oh, and ‘click carefully’ (wink! Wink!)

Muse -‘Uprising.’

Muse -‘United States Of Eurasia.’

The Resistance will be released on September 14.

Muse’s website/Muse’s myspace

OK fashion Nazis…come and get me!!


” Sorry, but how can you post this stuff on your blog? I mean, it’s not new, it’s not indie, and many of these acts are surely acts that you would slag off. At least, I thought you would. Isn’t it what you would normally be saying that Sid Vicious and Kurt Cobain didn’t die for?”

Ah……do me a favour and sod off. This is my blog, and if I want to post some eighties cheese…as well as posting about more hip and trendy artists*, I will.

Yes, some of these artists may have been responsible for some utter rubbish, but most people have got at least one good single in them. With the possible exception of Celine Dion. But it’s a nice day, and I don’t want to stress myself any further.
And anyway, I challenge all of you not to say that you like at least one of these.

And as for YOU, don’t LIE. No-one likes a snob.

I think these two songs are, in fact, two sides of the same coin. About looking back and realsing that whatever your age, perhaps the best days may have passed, as the idealism fades and the cynicism sets in. Listen to the lyrics of ‘Boys Of Summer’ carefully but avoid most of the stuff Henley did with the Eagles. Yuck.

Bryan Adams -‘Summer Of ’69.’ mp3

Don Henley -‘Boys Of Summer.’ mp3

Fleetwood Mac are one of the few AOR bands I will defend to the hilt, whether it’s the blues stuff or the later, Californian stuff. And this solo song from Stevie Nicks is brilliant. Anyone else recognise which R’N’B hit of the decade sampled it?

Stevie Nicks -‘Edge Of Seventeen.’ mp3

I’m still trying to work out which 70s punk-era singer is being referenced in Hanif Kureishi’s The Buddha Of Suburbia. Because, it’s obviously partly John Lydon…but does no-one else think there’s a touch of Billy Idol, too?

Billy Idol -‘White Wedding.’ mp3

Always bigger in the states than the UK, this was a top ten hit. Oh, and Aztec Camera covered it too.

Van Halen -‘Jump.’ mp3

And if anyone so much as mentions the words ‘Post-modern’ or ‘Irony’ I’ll wrap your Media Studies text books round yer neck.

See ya!


Update: this is for Ken : )

Aztec Camera -‘Jump.’ mp3

* This is subjective

Album Review – Orbital


Orbital -‘Orbital 20′ (Rhino)

This is one of the most glorious things to grace my ears this year. The ’20’ in the title could refer the number of years since they formed, the number of tracks on the compilation across two wonderful CDs or even the accumulated marks for each disc out of ten.

Because -make no mistake – this compilation of the work of the Brothers Hartnoll, Phil and Paul, is just fantastic. Even if you weren’t a dance music fan, not to be moved and impressed by these tracks would be to give up on life. It opens with ‘Chime’ their glorious manifesto, and continues with ‘Belfast’ the younger, further-reaching cousin of the Beloved’s ‘The Sun Rising.’ Then it’s onto ‘Satan’ the delightfully bonkers, thrilling floor-filler that samples the Butthole Surfers. And that’s just the first three tracks.

The Hartnoll Brothers proved themselves masters of much of what has come under the heading of dance and elctronica over the past two deacdes. Echoes of house, trance, ambient, techno and chill. Their contemporaries have, over time, included The Orb, Aphex Twin, Underworld, The Chemical Brothers, and Leftfield. Like these acts, they were born out of rave culture, but progressed into the charts and tore up the mainstream, proving themselves as chart stars with Top Of The Pops appearances, gracing the Peel Festive Fifty and the pages of indie bible NME. Added to that list should almost certainly be Massive Attack, DJ Shadow, UNKLE, Boards of Canada, the Prodigy and yes, Fatboy Slim and Moby. Hopefully all of them will be remembered when the inevitable nineties revival kicks into gear, that the music of the time was not just about grunge and Britpop. I made that mistake then, I’m sure as hell not doing it again.

I really connected with Orbital when ‘The Box’ came out, and it lead to me going back and investigating their earlier stuff. Now the four minute version here is great – but one of the few disappointments of this album is that it doesn’t include the full 28 minute version. It does contain two different versions of ‘Lush,’ a storming ten minute track. It doesn’t include their re-make of ‘The Saint’ theme, either, but I think I can live with that and so can you. Their live shows became legendary – so much so that when the band announced they were retiring in 2004, it seemed that they were constantly doing one more show. Now they have returned and this is not an excercise in nostalgia; rather, it’s an opportunity for everyone to remind themselves just how great they are.

Sod the bloody Gallagher brothers, this album proves that the most important act of brothers of British music over the last two decades is not Noel and Liam, but Phil and Paul.


Orbital -‘Style.’ mp3

Orbital -‘The Box.’ mp3

Orbital -‘Chime’ (Top Of the Pops 1990)

I’m back! And 17 Seconds Records have a new signing!!



After nearly a week off – something to do with IPs, or summat, 17 Seconds blog is back up and running. Not for lack of trying. Many thanks to the readers -particularly Ken and JC – who got in touch with me to let me know (I was on holiday in Switzerland) and Mrs. 17 Seconds for helping me get it there.


Yesterday, 17 seconds Records signed their fifth artist, Chris Bradley. Last year Chris released his debut album, Voices. In this hallowed blog, no less (!), I wrote: “To describe him as a talented singer, songwriter and guitarist is rather like saying that Tiger Woods is quite good at golf, or that the Williams’ sisters are rather good on the tennis court: an understatement that doesn’t begin to get to grips with the facts. Quite simply, on the evidence of these songs he is one of the best.”

Since 2007 he has been a member of Aberfeldy, who are also on 17 Seconds Records, and were our first signing. Chris’ second album is nearly completed and his first release for the label will be the double A-side single ‘Goddess Of Love’/’The Man I Love’. The later is a touching tribute to his father.

As well as playing as part of Aberfeldy next weekend at Belladrum, Chris will also be playing on August 23 at the Electric Circus in Edinburgh and at the Linkylea Festival, Haddington on September 12.

Pop over to his myspace and make friends. Then watch this video from his debut Voices:

Chris Bradley -‘To My Ears.’


Then go and buy his debut album Voices, which can be found physically or on digital format, including at eMusic, iTunes, Napster and Amazon.