2008 -The best so far?

Another, oh five months or so, and everyone’ll be making their lists of the best of the year.

As 17 Seconds progresses, I have heard about seventy new albums this year alreadt, as well as masses of tracks, and face the task of trying to put it all in order for the end of the year. It does feel like it’s been a good decade for music so far, in fact; BTW did the nineties ever go through a phase of being out or was it accepted that it had been pretty good overall? There have been one or two rubbish albums -I never want to hear the Black Mountain album again, frankly, but there has been some great stuff.

Anyway, this is a Top 10 tracks of the year so far for me:

1. Wedding Present – ‘The Trouble With Men.’ mp3
2. MGMT – ‘Time To Pretend.’ mp3
3. Santogold – ‘My Superman.’ mp3
4. Jamie Lidell -‘Another Day.’ mp3
5. Kills -‘Cheap and Cheerful.’ mp3
6. Dom DeLuca -‘Birds Of Worry.’ mp3
7. Hayman Watkins Trout and Lee -‘Sly and the Family Stone.’ mp3
8. Vampire Weekend -‘The Kids Don’t Stand A Chance.’ mp3
9. Neon Neon -‘I Lust U.’ mp3
10.Rustie -‘Mic Of The Year.’ mp3

See what you make of it, comments welcome, but do not assume that it will be the same come December. Oh, and anyone who thinks that there is only ever white middle class indie boys with guitars on this blog is not paying attention!

Hope things are drier wherever you are than they are down here…

Ten for a summer’s day

Hallelujah. It’s a summer’s day, it’s nice and warm and i’m not back in the classroom for several weeks. Yeees!

So, why not a playlist for a summer’s day? An eclectic mix of indie, dance, jazz and whatever takes my fancy.

Jamie Lidell -‘Another Day.’ mp3

Nina Simone -‘Feeling Good.’ mp3

Sigur Ros – Staralfur.’ mp3

Rockers’ Revenge -‘Walking On Sunshine 12″.’ mp3

Primitives -‘Through The Flowers.’ mp3

Aphex Twin -‘Girl/Boy Song.’ mp3

Donna Summer -‘I feel Love 12″ version.’ mp3

Moloko -‘Sing It Back (Boris musical mix).’ mp3

Chic -‘I Want Your Love 12″ version.’ mp3

The Streets -‘Your Song (Elton John cover).’ mp3

Melys -‘Chinese Whispers.’ mp3

Gig review: Jamie Lidell

Jamie Lidell, Edinburgh Liquid Rooms, April 26, 2008

Two days before the release of his new LP Jim, Jamie Lidell bought his show to Edinburgh’s Liquid Rooms. In the space of less than an hour, this absolute genius and his band unveiled a show that demonstrates why it is time for the public to come forward and take him to their hearts.

As with Jim, the set started with ‘Another Day.’ It feels like the gentlest call of arms you will ever hear on vinyl. However, live with the help of his band the song is reinvented. Particularly with the aid of his saxophonist who appears to be playing two saxophones at once (and yes, I was stone cold sober). Though the album was two days from being officially released (how much currency does that phrase still have in this age of internet leaks?), it was interesting to see and hear how different it was from the album versions.

He is clearly hugely excited to be touring with a band, though a different set-up from that which he recorded Jim with, and it’s clear just how much fun the band are having. Talking to him backstage a few hours earlier, though he was still shatered from the rpevious night’s gig in Glasgow, and concerned about his voice, there was no mistaking how much enthusiasm he has for this current project.

Nor should it be assumed, though, that he has forgotten his background in electronic music. There is an ‘electronic workout’ (where the band take off into the crowd as Lidell is left onstage alone, sampling his own voice and turning the atmosphere from seventies soul revue into a contemporary club setting. Staggering and amazing moth in terms of watching and hearing.

Whilst the album is respectful in its doffing of an aesthetic cap to soul giants like Marvin Gaye, Isaac Hayes and most of all, Stevie Wonder, live with his band, Jamie Lidell clearly demonstartes the funk in a way reminiscent of Parliament-Funkadelic. Impressive for anyone (but has been commented to the point of boredom, as a Caucasian Englishman, this feat is something else. Especially given that he sounds nothing like Jamiroquai or Simply Red).

Encoring with a version of ‘Multiply’ the title track of his break-through LP from 2005, the song is much quicker than on record, and yet just as effective. Jamie Lidell is an astonishing musician and performer. This is certainly the best gig I have been to this year, and if this really is the last Triptych, the organisers were wise to book him.


Jamie Lidell -‘Another Day.’ mp3

Jamie Lidell -‘Wait For Me.’ mp3