perlmonger: (kumu)
…by the sad loss of Humph of Rossmore Road (tangential I know, but there y'go).

If anyone has a spare copy, or a reasonably clean rip, I'd be interested to hear from them.


Mar. 15th, 2008 07:59 pm
perlmonger: (Default)

For no particular reason other than bizarre juxtapositions, this is what we’ve last scrobbled with the Roku on random play:

  • Eat Static – Pupae (The Locust Song)
  • Maria Callas – Bizet - Carmen - L’amour est un oiseau rebelle
  • Mousse T. & Tom Jones – Sexbomb
  • Maria Callas – Charpentier - Louise - Depuis le jour
  • The James Taylor Quartet – Lausanne revisited
  • Sting – Rock Steady
  • Mary Black – The Crow in the Cradle
  • Steve Hackett – Please Don’t Touch
  • Suicide – Cheree
  • Bill Nelson – Bill Nelson - The Strangest Things, The Strangest Times

perlmonger: (music)
Somebody, unidentified, widdled on Jamie Oliver in the night. This is double-plus ungood as I thought they might have given up on such things, but the Boy Oliver may be salvageable as he appears to be covered in some sort of wipe-clean plastic sheath.

We will be applying moist towelettes, or possibly a steam cleaner, to the Mockney One shortly.

In other news, [ profile] ramtops and I ventured out last night to Nailsea Folk Club to see Phil Beer and Miranda Sykes, supported by Issy and David Emeney with Kate Riaz, and a splendid evening it was too.

[ profile] thunderbox might rock or, indeed, keen at the thought of a melodeon, but Issy plays it very well, and Kate is a remarkably fine cellist, understated but holding the trio together while casually adding little flourishes from the back of the stage that made me smile. Issy’s singing voice is perhaps a little over influenced by Maddie Prior, and I generally preferred the instrumental parts of their set, but if you’re at all folkie, catch them if they’re playing in your area and you’re unlikely to regret it.

Phil and Miranda, now. Well. Jointly, severally; in folk, blues, lounge jazz, standards from the last four decades, and songs but recently written… It’s impossible to sum them or their performances up in short as they cover such an incredible spread of style and genre except to say that they are both astonishingly talented musicians, and that the two playing together gel into something far more than the sum of the parts, unmissable as each part would be alone. Notice of things to come, too: Phil, in his introduction to Willin’ announced that Little Feat will be headlining at Trowbridge this year: they can’t ever be as they were, with Lowell George gone, but I think that’s definitely something to be looking forward to.

A good night.


Dec. 7th, 2007 08:32 pm
perlmonger: (kumu)
My last post applies to music too: listening to Show of Hands’ treatment of Widecombe Fair made me want to read Margaret Elphinstone’s The Incomer.

ETA that the online post editor really is a heap of shite, isn’t it?
perlmonger: (kumu)
[ profile] ramtops and I are just returned from Colston Hall, where we experienced an extraordinarily emotionally charged Show of Hands gig. If you were unaware, Steve Knightley’s son has been diagnosed with leukemia, thankfully one with a good prognosis, and is currently in Bristol Children’s Hospital. We weren’t expecting to see Steve - Phil and Miranda have been carrying this tour on their own - but Steve came down tonight from the Hospital, where he and his wife have been staying thanks to CLIC Sargent, and played.

If audience support has any healing effect whatsoever, Jack should be feeling it right now; the atmosphere was extraordinary both on and off the stage. Steve’s solo encore of I Promise You pretty nearly had me in tears; I can only try and imagine what he must have been feeling.

Slaid Cleaves from Austin, Texas opened, with splendid guitaring from Michael O’Connor. I’ve not heard either before tonight, but I’d recommend checking them out if they play anywhere near you: a fine noise, with yodelling even; country rock, country and folk with cheery lyrics that’ll put a smile on your face (why, even in the Canadian lumberjack folk song, only one person died: how cheerful do y’all want? :)

An Antidote

Nov. 5th, 2007 06:21 pm
perlmonger: (kumu)
As [ profile] ramtops said, a thoroughly horrid day. That it could have been orders of magnitude worse is only a small consolation.


After much poking at a long list, here are today’s list of my eight desert island albums, as inspired by [ profile] oldbloke via [ profile] blue_condition. The list will change in large part tomorrow, but that’s inevitable.

  • Captain Beefheart Trout Mask Replica As [ profile] blue_condition said, it has to be in there doesn’t it?

  • Henry Cow In Praise of Learning It was a toss up between this and Unrest, but the splendid Living in the Heart of the Beast clenched it; that’s the piece of music that most often manifests spontaneously in the canyons of my mind these days.

  • Easy Star All-Stars Dub Side of the Moon It’s not often that reworkings of classic albums are in just about every way finer than the original, but that’s the case here. Lovely stuff.

  • The Planet Wilson Not Drowning But Waving The best band never to really come out of Hull, they were killed by Richard Branson (signed, first album with all the stuffing produced out of it did nothing). This is the indie label second album that captures at least some of the live energy from Hallam and Lou out of the Red Guitars, and Grant Ardis, one of the finest drummers I’ve heard to this day.

  • Philip Glass Songs From Liquid Days What’s not to like? Great music and lyrics performed and sung by great musicians and singers. Essential.

  • Frank Zappa Thing-Fish Picking a Zappa album ends up being pretty arbitrary, but this insanity is probably my favourite at the moment.

  • Gravity Fred Frith Proof, it were needed, that avant-garde guitar stylings can be fun and only as much hard work as the listener feels like devoting to them. Makes me smile.

  • Michelle Shocked Captain Swing This makes me smile too; a truly joyous collection of songs from one of the best things to have ever come out of East Texas. I need cheering up, damnit.

perlmonger: (kumu)
Today was mostly spent leafleting; [ profile] ramtops is standing for District in Easton in Gordano and we spent the best part of five hours tramping round Easton in Gordano itself and, after a brief BEER’n’sammidge stop, in Leigh Woods which, for reasons that pass understanding, is deemed to be part of EiG for election purposes (though not for Parish, where it’s part of Long Ashton; I expect there is logic in there somewhere, but I’m uncertain where).

Home for cups of tea, and then out again to see Phil BEER at the Bristol Folk House. We parked on Great George Street which (not unusually) lacked functional parking ticket machines so I trusted to a note behind the windscreen for protection. Nandos, where we’d planned to eat, was heaving so we ate at Yum Yum Thai (who don’t appear to have a website) over the road, which is far better than its name would suggest; we’ll stop there again, I think.

At the Folk House, Phil’s support this time was Isambarde, a folk trio from Coventry who, despite an initially appalling sound mix, were, well, very good indeed, Mostly traditional tunes (I guess that Richard Thompson counts as traditional) and played splendidly - guitar, fiddle and oboe with singing, jointly and severally, too. All three are accomplished young musicians, and there’s a fine spark between them playing together. Good harmonies also: recommended. We walked away with their latest CD, hopefully they will have captured some at least of their live energy on there.

Phil followed with a two part set: first half solo, second paired up with the wonderful Miranda Sykes. There’s not a lot to say here; an eclectic and consistently excellent set as always; Miranda in particular gets better every time I see here, her voice has a richness and depth that’s rare. They finished with a double Little Feat encore, which was an extra treat. An energising night: we arrived exhausted and practically falling asleep and left - well, not quite bouncing with energy, but awake and smiling. Even my feet feel less sore now.

Bed now, with a cup of tea.
perlmonger: (kumu)
Today’s The Beat on the World Service is worth a listen for Mark Coles interviewing Ry Cooder about his new album.

The album is about what, extraordinarily, is now the forgotten history of the US - collectivism, Unions, the people who built the country (as opposed to those who got rich from it); the programme is on at 9:30, 15:30, 19:30 and 22:30 GMT and, if IP blocking allows, you can hear the snippet I heard on Today here.
perlmonger: (kumu)
Well, another splendid Show of Hands gig at St George’s, with Miranda Sykes joining the lads as usual, and support from Martyn Joseph. They really do get better every time we see them.
And a minister said his vision of hell
Is three folk singers in a pub near Wells
Well I’ve got a vision of urban sprawl
It’s pubs where no one ever sings at all

...and we didn’t even get a parking ticket though, after one blocked machine and two more that each choked on a pound coin, I was quite looking forward to an exchange of views with whoever Bristol have outsourced their revenue generationparking services to.

Even better, as we settled down for a few minutes unwinding, Mustrum came in through the window with a (terminally unwell) rat in his mouth; such a kindness to bring us a gift, now lovingly enwrapped in a carrier bag in the bin awaiting the arrival of the refuse disposal operatives in the morning.

And so, I think, to bed.
perlmonger: (kumu)
Thursday night, I went to see the Durutti Column at St George’s. I’d not realised until I read the handout (which, in turn, seems to have been a print of their Wikipedia article) that the misspelling was originally down to a 1961 SI poster. Now, was that carelessness or by design? A distorted reflection or a deliberate Spectacular introduction?

Anyhow, the night opened with Westcott and Rodway who, I must say, and in the absence of much of the audience who only turned up for Vini and friends, were for me the most interesting part of the night. They’re very young, and exhibit their influences in what was, to me, a charmingly naïve way; but what influences! They started with a relaxed soft jazz vibe with William Rodway’s piano sounding uncannily like Steve Miller (no, not that one) with Adam Wescott’s guitar resonating with Jukka Tolonen at his most laid back and pastoral. From there to flamenco, Philip Glass and Penguin Café and more. There was easily enough individuality and promise in there to carry the set off, and I look forward to hearing where they might go from here.

After the interval, Vini Reilly hit the stage, with Bruce Mitchell on percussion and Keir Stuart on bass. They presented in an engagingly laid back way, informing us that they hadn’t rehearsed at all and Vini starting the first song in the wrong key. That could have been irritating and arrogant, but it just felt relaxed and charming. The first few songs were fine, a nicely balanced stream of Mancunian angst above all showing off Mitchell as the very fine drummer that he is, and were followed by Vini swapping his strat for a Les Paul: he told us that it was new, and the song was a bit of silliness they were doing just as am excuse for him to play his new guitar. They launched into a full on British Blues Trio workout, and very fine it was too with the added edge of the archetypal emaciated Factory Records Existential despair survivor as full on guitar hero. Two couples got up and left in the midst of this that I could see (there may well have been others ;), but I must say that I enjoyed the irreverence immensely - as, by the signs, did Vini, Bruce and Keir.

Thereafter, though, things became less satisfactory for me: I was sat in the middle of row B, in direct line of fire for Vini’s guitar 4x12, and that fucker was, for the rest of the set, loud; to the extent that I could barely hear what was coming out of the PA. Vocals vanished, as did (mostly) the bass, and even the drum kit was subdued. As far as I could tell, the music would have been fine if it were even remotely balanced, but balanced is the one thing it was not. How much this was down to the St George’s acoustic (it really isn’t a good venue for amplified music) and how much unfortunate positioning on my part I’m not sure, but it did somewhat spoil what should have been a fine night. A pity.


Jul. 24th, 2006 10:20 pm
perlmonger: (kumu)

Mike Visceglia
Originally uploaded by perlmonger.
[ profile] ramtops and I got home from Trowbridge festival this morning, where we had a pretty damned wonderful time, some of it in the company of [ profile] gmul and [ profile] purple_peril. You can find photos here.

We returned home to:

1) sundry organic deposits scattered around the house, being the gift of the Tribe

2) a server that conveniently chose to go sideways just as we arrived back

3) a tomato plant that had clearly had a not inconsiderable mass deposited upon it, flattening it and rendering about half the branches detached or semi-detached from its root system (see item 1)

I’m going to bed now.
perlmonger: (bruichladdich)
[ profile] ramtops and I are back from seeing The Blue NilePaul Buchanan at Colston Hall and, despite all problems, very fine it was too.

In their stripped down, lean configuration, they’re using a pair of keyboard controllers driving a pair of powerbooks for all keyboard sounds, and therein lied the rub: one of the macs was crashing with distressing regularity. We suspect a hard disk on its way out, but we didn’t venture on stage to do any diagnostics.

So, the set list went out of the window as Paul tried to stick with songs that put least strain on the software but, as far as I can work out, by the end and many reboots later we only lost one song out of the set. The (sadly small) audience was hugely supportive and after, finally, Tinseltown in the Rain was played through without a crash as the encore, delivered a well deserved standing ovation. I fear to think (as I suspect does Paul :) what will happen if things go Horribly Wrong in Glasgow at the weekend, so I hope that whatever the cause is, it’s fixed in the next two days :)

Sadly neither the hassles nor the size of the audience (I gather that none of the non-Glasgow gigs have sold out) is likely to make the next tour happen in the forseeable; I do hope that wasn’t the last time Paul will appear in Bristol. I wonder if the sparseness of the crowd was from not being able to call themselves the Nile, or if it runs deeper.

crawl back

Feb. 10th, 2006 11:28 pm
perlmonger: (pete)
Well, if this country has ever produced a better guitarist, I’d like to know who he or she is.

[ profile] ramtops and I are just back from seeing the exceeding fine Richard Thompson, accompanied by the equally fine Danny Thompson on bass at Colsonall. Not a lot to say, really, except that it was utterly wonderful; the sort of thing that would tempt a chap to despairing destruction of his own guitars if it weren’t so uplifting.

Glass of wine, and then to bed I think.

G’night all.

[ETA] we had the best seats in the house, too: two next to the centre aisle in row B (it’s useful buying tickets the day the show is announced :). Being on the front row does my neck in, and this time we had the best of all worlds as, for some unknown reason, whoever bought the two seats in front of us didn’t turn up. We got a quizzical raised eyebrow from RT for that too, when he came on stage to an otherwise packed hall.


perlmonger: (Default)

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