Sunday, 24 June 2012

Listening Club - 24th June 2012

Greetings and salutations!

Listening club preamble today comes to you live from Mr.Monkeytypes living room in Brighton, being tapped out on @dingsters iPad. Yes, that's right folks, there's been a little LC meet up. Much alcohol, music and gesticulation was involved, as you'd expect, and a splendid time was had by all. So here I am, getting this sorted while taking alternate swigs of Purdeys and leftover lager (yay, go me!) before we head off to find a cracking Sunday lunch...

So, casting my mind back, last week I had the pleasure of curating LC myself, and threw two albums at you due to my procrastination. And donchajustknow, it all turned out splendidly. First was Salyu X Salyu's "Sound Beams", followed by AM & Shawn Lee's "Celestial Electric", both of which, I'm delighted to say, went down very well. Forgive the lack of cover artwork representing them in this post, but it's going to take all my effort to cut and paste the next bit, which is what you're waiting for, so over to @fraserlaeto for this week's intro...

"I never believed that this would be a difficult choice to make, but it has been. I've had about 5 dead-certs that I abandoned over the course of the week.

I thought about albums that have been on this before, and the thread seems to be that they're not just a barrage of a particular style for 45 mins; they tend to have some variety, be proper peaks-and-troughs works. I thought about why other people had played what they did, that it probably wasn't their favourite album, that it wasn't necessarily something they thought everyone should hear. It seemed not to be about impressing your music tastes on others, so much as offering something up that's an entry into your world.

I've rejected the choice that was funniest to me; the last Harvey Milk album 'A Small Turn of Human Kindness (2010)', an absolutely desolate, sparse club-to-the-head of a noise-rock record that I love, and find real emotion in despite the fact it's clearly supposed to irritate me.

I've rejected the statement album, which might be Sunn O)))'s 'Monoliths & Dimensions' or something, a real "this is something you've never heard before".
I decided against Slint's 'Spiderland' - the 'everyone needs to hear this' option, and probably my favourite album, really.
I abandoned Deerhoof's 'Offend Maggie', which would have been perfect, but was a bit close to the choices of last week.
The favourite right up until the 11th hour was Jim O'Rourke's 'Insignificance', a really nice accessible jangly acoustic rock album with an undercurrent of mean spiritedness-ness that only really reveals itself after a good 10 listens, but you're only hearing it once, listener.

In the end I remembered this record and thought "yeah that's a good choice". The undercurrent of mean-ness and discomfort reveals itself pretty much straight away in this one, but it's a varied effort that sits well and flows like a real album should. It's got definite head-nodding 'everyone has to be into this!' moments, but there's also a fair bit of difficult listening in there too, and that's the part of this that appeals most to me."

Download is here (Dropbox link) or the Mixcloud link is here.

Start time, as always, is 8pm BST (GMT+1), search #listeningclub and follow @listeningclub to see what's going on. See you then!

Sunday, 17 June 2012

Listening Club - 17th June 2012

Greetings to you all.

I do think it's about time I did something to the layout of this blog, seeing as it's getting good use. However, in the time honoured tradition of deferred DIY, every week I have a look, say "must do something about that" and then promptly forget it. Well, at least I'm honest.

But O, my brothers and sisters, what fun I had last week making my way back through London communing with you all and the sound of The Delgados "Peloton" collectively drifting through our earholes. Another thumbs up from everyone, so hugest of thanks, as always, to @MonkeyTypes for the pick.

My return journey across town obviously tickled the aforementioned Mr.Types, as he selected yours truly to be this week's selector. So... er... over to Me for the introduction...

"Thanks for that, Me! Ooh, it's nice to be in italics for a change.

Now, I really thought I had this one in the bag - in fact I'd already earmarked an album as perfect Listening Club material, but half way through the week, a wild last minute contender leapt out from behind a bush and demanded equal attention. In the time-honoured tradition, I stuck both albums in a washing-up bowl out the back and let them duke it out, but after several days of wrestling, neither has come out the victor...

So you're getting them both.

I think they provide a decent balance, and really, both are worthy additions to the Listening Club Hall Of Fame. Not sure if you'll want to cue them up back to back (Mixcloud does that automatically, I think), or have a ten minute intermission between the two to bring the start of the second one to 9pm, but we'll figure it out I'm sure. No worries if you don't want to play both tonight, keep the second one back if you like and listen at your leisure..."

Download both albums here (mediafire link), or stream via Mixcloud here and here.

Start time, as always, is 8pm BST (GMT+1), search #listeningclub and follow @listeningclub to see what's going on. See you then!

Sunday, 10 June 2012

Listening Club - 10th June 2012

Greetings and salutations,

Hope you're all well and good. Here in England we're settling into the season, knotting waterproof hankies for our heads and enjoying our national summer hobby of cursing football performance / lack of decent weather / jubilee / olympics / beer / asbos / some guy called Jeremy etc. Those bloody people, I tell you, they do my crust in. Cor blimey, where's the skiffle? Etc.

One thing no-one has any reason to complain about is the excellence contained within the albums delivered to Listening Club, because it is Consistently Ov Thee Highest Standarde. And last week's selection of "Six Million Ways To Live" by The Dub Pistols, made by @jonnydapigg was no exception - another fine choice, and a splendidly funky complement to the midst of the Jubilee weekend.

Jonny picked @Monkeytypes to go back in the chair this week, so over to him for the preamble...

"This was an easy choice that I tried to make complicated. Not that I'm complaining. I unearthed some long forgotten gems while deliberating over my selection and had a chuckle at some of the evil I could have unleashed. However, deep down I knew I was going to opt for this.

Recommended by a friend, this marks a transitional period in my life, a time when I changed careers and somehow found myself married. I can remember the novelty of starting a job that allowed me to listen to music and this got played a hell of a lot in those early months.

I don't think I can put into words just how much I love this album so I'm not going to try. Even now there are parts that still give me chills. If you've not heard it before I think around the 2 minute mark you'll be won over.

I hope.

So, sit back, turn up the volume and enjoy a beautiful journey that never quite goes where you expect."

Download link is here, or you can stream the album at Mixcloud here.

Start time, as always, is 8pm BST (GMT+1), search #listeningclub and follow @listeningclub to see what's going on. See you then!

Sunday, 3 June 2012

Listening Club - 3rd June 2012

Greetings to you all,

Apologies for the slight tardiness of this weeks posting - London transport grinding to a go-slow thanks to some anniversary or other, and me unintentionally napping this afternoon following a night on the tiles are to blame. Ooops!

Back to life now tho, so thanks are of course in order first to @samsmitter for last week's selection of Fred Neil's 1966 eponymous album, which transported everyone back to the hazy smoky environs of a Greenwich Village coffeehouse. First time we've dived back as far as the 1960s for a selection, and a mighty fine one it was too, even getting a thumbs up from our special guest listener: my mum!

Sam also picked @jonnydapigg to make this weeks choice, so over to him for the intro...

"Reets then, my go. Been kinda hoping that I could get a summer time nomination as most of the potential choices I had are of a definite summer vibe. The choosing of the album wasn't so hard once I'd narrowed it down to one band, this intro however has been reworked more than Andy Coulson's testimony, and with that I'll begin...

This album came to me by way of a remix that has been in my record bag since I got it in 2004 to this very day and has been played at every gig covering all manner of events and styles.  Such was the allure of this remix I eventually  went out and bought the album without listening to anything else by the band,  well, actually I got the album after this one, then the one after that, and then went back to get this one and then went for the one before that, bit of a stupid order but that's just how this went.

It's mainly this time of year when these albums make their way back into my playlist, sunshine seems to fit with this (and their others), possibly this is down to the association I have with this genre and live events like Newcastle's Green Festival which as fate has it is this weekend, so at the time of listening I'll have had 2 days of booze, sun (hopefully) and tuneage which will make for a perfect build up to this listening club.
I fully expect some of you to know/own this album so sit back and enjoy and to those who don't I can recommend plenty of volume, get the subs up  and prepare to enjoy."

Download link is here, or you can stream the album at Mixcloud here

Start time, as always, is 8pm BST (GMT+1), search #listeningclub and follow @listeningclub to see what's going on. See you then!