Sunday, 30 December 2012

Listening Club - 30th December 2012

Greetings, and compliments of the vortex to you!

Feeling rather good here having had a few days of fine wine, good food and a stack of this year's films (infinitely preferably to watching godawful Xmas TV), now springing back into action to assemble the first ever Listening Club Festive Vortex playlist!

The Festive Vortex, if you're wondering, refers to the few days between Xmas Day and New Year's Eve when nothing really happens. Like right now. No better setting for a playlist crammed with picks from this years's LC selectors favourite tunes of 2012!

So here you go without further ado... 27 tunes, randomly ordered, all killer, no filler. You're in for a treat, I promise!

(Fingers crossed I haven't cocked anything up, apologies in advance if I have!)

Download via Dropbox here (direct download mirror here if it's slow), or stream it on Mixcloud if the wind is blowing in the right direction here!

Get the beers in, and I'll see you in the twit-tubes at 8pm. Search #listeningclub to see what's going on, and follow@listeningclub for the admin!

And Happy New Year to you all - See you in 2013!

Sunday, 23 December 2012

Listening Club - 23rd December 2012

Greetings and happy holiday season to you all.

I don't normally link up to anything else other than LC stuff on here, but felt I needed a little dose of, in my humble opinion, one of the greatest Xmas records of all time to set the scene. A few bars of the above and a glass of wine and, hey! Instant pre-xmas relaxation mode. Jolly good indeed...

Don't forget next Sunday it's our first ever "Festive Vortex" megamix - favourite tunes of the year as chosen by #Listeningclub selectors, shaken up and distributed to ease your holiday minds. Still a little bit of time left to pick tunes if you haven't already, and big thanks to all who have!

So, last week @dingster sent the assembled LC squad back to the early nineties to shake a plaid tailfeather to Blind Melon's eponymous debut album, triggering quite a range of opinions and discussion, as you'd expect. All in the best possible taste, mind, so big thanks to @dingster for the pick, and for selecting the rather busy but no less willing @eastvanhalen to make the final LC choice of 2012. Over to her for the intro...

"Hey there, all you lovely people. This has been a week of one clusterfuck after another, and I have been damn near ready to lose my mind. So when I stopped having conniptions about work long enough to think about what would be a good record for this week I discarded my original ideas - interesting local pop, more music my friends made, some good screaming punk - for something that would be a good antidote to all of the seasonal stress. 

Naturally, that meant some ass-shaking funk.

This became my go-to summer record after my boyfriend gave it to me as one of my birthday presents this year. He's a working sax player, and the artist, also a sax player, is a great favourite of his. When he was about 13, the artist came to town to play a club gig, and D., too young to get into the show, decided to skip school and wait by the load-in door with his sax and a Sharpie in the hope he could get his case signed. He waited forever in this really sketchy alley, and had just about given up hope when the tour bus pulled up. Finally approached by his idol, he was so petrified that he just stood there holding the Sharpie and the case, unable to say a word. The artist looked at him for a while, and then he said: "Son, you got to tell me what you want because I can't read your mind!"

One awesome record, one awesome motto. Enjoy."

Grab it via Dropbox here, or streaming via mixcloud here!

Start time as always is 8pm GMT. Search #listeningclub to see what's going on, and follow@listeningclub for the admin!

Sunday, 16 December 2012

Listening Club - 16th December 2012

Hello there,

Okay, we're running a little late this week, so yadda yadda brr cold eek nearly Xmas yadda yadda where has the year gone? etc etc. Still time to submit your end of year favourites for the Festive Vortex playlist if you haven't already, and huge thanks to those of you that have - It's looking mighty fine!

Last week, as any fule kno (except me, who was in absentia), @thejayarr rocked the assembled LC faithful with Mando Diao's "Bring 'Em In", and everyone seemed rather pleased to be the recipients of such rockage. Merci to him for the pick, and for propelling @dingster back into the spotlight this week. Over to him for the intro...

“This week has been somewhat stressful, work being particularly busy to the point that I hadn’t even thought about this until yesterday. Panic ensued. I quickly went through the few choices I had mentally picked last Sunday after being tossed the Frisbee from @thejayarr but none really stood out. Given it is also the penultimate LC of 2012 I felt I needed to bring out the big guns.

Alas, it appeared my holsters were empty.

Until I looked at what I had been listening to this week at work. Over and over and over again. And suddenly this all became very easy.

I think this is possibly one of my favourite albums of the era, and a friend and I have covered this bands cover of another bands cover many times over (sadly not on this album) as it is, quite simply, awesome.

Anyway. Enough from me. Hope you are all feeling festive. This time next week I will have just turned 32 so will likely be nursing a sore head. Merry Christmas you lot, thanks for making the past year very interesting in terms of music.”

Verily, and all that. Grab it via Dropbox, or streaming via mixcloud here!

Start time as always is 8pm GMT. Search #listeningclub to see what's going on, and follow@listeningclub for the admin!

Sunday, 9 December 2012

Listening Club - 9th December 2012

Lo to you all.

Well, barely a week into December and already the whole internet is falling over itself to declaim their top happenings of the year. If you can't be bothered to flick through the huge number of lists, as always Metacritic are combining everything into one chart-of-charts, which is always worth a look.

Here at #listeningclub, as a combined end-of-year chart, christmas-party-playlist and excuse-for-a-week-off, I've asked each of this years selectors to pick a couple of their favourite tracks from 2012 each, which we'll shuffle up and distribute in the time-honoured fashion on Sunday 30th December (and possibly also Sunday 23rd December if we get an overload of tracks). Looking forward to it? Indeedy, me too!

Jumping back in time, last week @pamac66 broke his LC duck with the selection of Daniel Johnson's "Lost And Found", which hit the right unhinged spots with pretty much everyone. A good call indeed and thanks to Paul also for picking @thejayarr to make this week's choice. Over to him for the preamble...

"This was a tough choice. Like, really tough. It took a long time to whittle down my options from six albums to a final two, which left me with a torturous decision between a band that I’ve only very recently found but have recorded one of my favourite tracks of 2012, and one that I’ve been listening to religiously for years. I can’t begin to think how many times I’ve heard this record over the last week while trying to pick something, but luckily it’s not an album that ever gets old for me, which probably tells you which one I went with in the end.

I actually first heard this band when they supported Dirty Pretty Things at my student union. Don’t let that put you off, though – they absolutely blew the headliners out of the water. Unfortunately, that is to date the only time I’ve been able to see them live, as they haven’t played in the UK for a few years now. As I understand it, they’re “big on the continent” but somehow never managed to pick up much of a following on this side of the channel.

I won’t claim this record is going to change anybody’s life or anything like that. But it’s loud, it’s fun, and it rattles along nicely. Enjoy!"

Righty ho - Grab it via Mediafire, or streaming via mixcloud here!

Start time is 8pm GMT. Search #listeningclub to see what's going on, and follow@listeningclub for the admin!

Sunday, 2 December 2012

Listening Club - 2nd December 2012

Well well, happy to say that I'm typing this a day early, on the flight out to Dusseldorf for a DJ set and also to catch up with the newly relocated @monkeytypes. I'll be glad I did this now, as I'm most likely to be waking up tomorrow with a sore head and a mission to get myself back to the UK!

(Unfortunately due to a "me not hitting the right button" error, the above didn't get posted yesterday - best laid plans and all that, eh? And yes, I do now indeed have a very sore head...)

Anyhoo, last week @jimmccauley took us out to regions unknown with The Porcupine Tree's "The Incident", which was appreciated by many, if not all, and led to the inevitable discussion of the merits of early Genesis (surely the Godwin's Law of any prog rock discussion). Jim also plucked the admiring @pamac66 to make this weeks choice, so over to him for the pre-match....

"A big thanks to @JimMcCauley for a) bringing some Porcupine Tree to our Sunday evenings and b) picking me to host this week's extravaganza - crikey!

When Listening Club started, I (like most of you, I'm sure) started to think about which album I would choose if I had the opportunity to host. I came up with, what I thought was, the perfect choice. A week later I thought of something better.

Now that the time has come, I've got 5 albums in mind. So Monday morning I started listening to them again to whittle it down to one - not easy. I quickly managed to get it down to two. One is an album of German electro-pop, the other by a well respected and gifted singer/songwriter - both very different.

It's now Wednesday lunchtime and I'm sitting in a pub in Highgate still pondering over my choices. I've got a pint in one hand and a coin in the other. Heads - electro-pop, tails - the singer/songwriter. It's the only way.

And the winner is …"

The winner is downloadable either on Mediafire, or Dropbox, or streaming via mixcloud here!

Start time is 8pm GMT. Search #listeningclub to see what's going on, and follow@listeningclub for the admin.

Right, I'm off to order a mountain of Thai takeaway! See you at eight....