Sunday, 18 March 2018

The Listening Club - 18th March 2018

Greetings folks,

Hope you're doing good. Sunny but chilly here in Amsterdam. Growing impatient for warmer weather, but plenty of film watching making the time go (see Annihilation if you get a chance, very good). Reminder that I'm away week after next, so vortex or not? Let me know what you think...

Last week, wor @nessiest was in the chair, debuting David Byrne's new album "American Utopia", which bopped and popped its way around the assembled to mostly positive effect. Thanks to Vanessa for the pick, and for whizzing the frisb across the ice to @holette, who's here with this week's introduction...

“Here’s a debut album that screams don’t fuck with me attitude, uncompromising pop and a fierce sense of identity.

There will be shouty girls with guitars. There will be hand claps, harmonies, heavy riffs and big tunes.

You can spot some of their influences easily enough but for me their sound is empowering, a cool mix of raw and slick and they just seem like a whole lot of fun.

It’s short and sweet so anyone hyped up and ready for the after party might want to to chuck in a tune or two inspired by the album. Go!”

Okaydoke. Direct download is here, and the HearBeSpoilers stream is below:

See you at 8pm GMT.

Sunday, 11 March 2018

The Listening Club - 11th March 2018

Hey folks,

Hope all is good. Spring sprungness has hit Amsterdam, which is lovely, so the trad joy of opening long-shut windows and airing out the place is the order of the day. So, with fresh oxygen in my lungs, a heads up to you all that I'll be away Sunday 1st April, and therefore need someone to take care of business here. Hmm... April 1st eh? That might be one for a foolish vortex if someone fancies running it...

Last week, @JimMcCauley was in the chair, getting a little spooky with his pick of Cobalt Chapel's eponymous debut album, which went down pretty well with the assembled. Many thanks to Jim for the pick, and for flipping the frisb across to wor @nessiest, who's right here (okay, actually she's upstairs right now), with this week's intro...

"This artist was on posters ripped from music mags and blu-tacked to my teenage bedroom wall, the inspiration for fashion choices back in the day (you’ll know which) and for me has formed part of the soundtrack of life. They’re an international treasure, long may they continue to create, unite and inspire.

My pick this week was part of the usual filtering and selection process, my initial pick pretty much immediately dismissed for a couple of reasons, one of which means that after discussing and agreeing with Mr  Kleptone, the download will be pulled after tonight. The other possibles may be future picks (if you lot don’t pick em all first) but for this week there were good and valid reasons they weren’t quite right: too much like last week’s pick/from the same town as one of my last picks/album not out yet (!)...

This is the right album. Even though I haven’t heard it. Let’s listen to it together. À la Listening Club back in the day."

OK, direct download (until 9pm GMT!) is here, and the HearTheSpoilers stream is below: 

See you at 8pm GMT.

Sunday, 4 March 2018

The Listening Club - 4th March 2018


Hope you're all defrosting nicely, especially those of you around our neck of the woods. Yep, the thaw has hit Amsterdam finally today, much to the annoyance of the oddball locals who have quite literally been skating on thin ice for the past week or so - rather them than me I must say. Happily booking future good times too as both John Cale and The Decemberists have announced shows here later in the year, hoorah. And it's @nessiest's birthday too, so cake and bubbles are most likely being consumed here as you read this....

Last week in #LC-land, @akx was in the house, busting out a vintage electro mix courtesy of I-F's "Mixed Up In The Hague Vol.1" which got the assembled busting moves all over the place. Thanks to Aarni for the selection and for sailing the frisb across to @JimMcCauley who is here with this week's intro...

"I've been sitting on this one for over a year; I nearly picked it back in January 2017, but it had only just been released and I wasn't quite sure about it. 13 months and many plays later, I'm reasonably sure about it.

"It's a sound that evokes terrifying old kids' TV show such as Children of the Stones and Timeslip, and watching them on grey Sunday afternoons with a slight fever making everything seem that bit more plausible. It takes all the weird, unsettling bits of psychedelia, prog and folk, mixes them up a bit and shows them to you through a modern lens with a completely straight face.

"Basically, if Scarfolk had a soundtrack, it would be this album. Enjoy!"

Okaydoke. Direct download is here, and the HearMySpoilers stream is below:

See you at 8pm GMT for playback.

Sunday, 25 February 2018

The Listening Club - 25th February 2018

Greetings folks,

Hope you're all doing fine. Feeling under the weather here in Amsterdam, so no ruminations on the current climate or whatever this week. It's cold and I feel like crap. So it goes. At least there's tunes to be had...

Last week in #LC land, @Har_Shone was in the chair, with the dulcet tones of Andrew Bird's "Are You Serious?". Many thanks to Harriet for the pick, and for sailing the frisb across to Finland, where @akx is waiting with this week's pre-match....

"As expected, I forgot all about being in the chair and in the possession of the frisbaton, so lastish minute pick it is – and yes, it's another mix as opposed to a regular album. Rather than write a blurb of my own, I'm going to just quote some reviews off Discogs. These folks put it better than I could, anyway.

"when DJs heard this album, they just threw their decks in the trash. I mean, why bother? [...]"
"this disc is purely a lesson in deejaying, programming, edits, and electronic music history."
"the only reason it's called "one of" the best mixes of all time is because volume 2 exists."

So yeah – it's a good one. Enjoy."

OK. Direct, yet confusingly titled, download is here, and the HearMySpoilers stream is below:

See you at 8pm GMT.

Sunday, 18 February 2018

The Listening Club - 18th February 2018

Greetings folks,

Hope all is good in your respective hoods. Still shivering here in Amsterdam, although the sun is poking its head out a little more often, which is a lovely thing to watch from indoors, natch. Surprisingly quiet on the gig front also, which is odd for this time of year, although plenty bookings being made for summer fun (still plugging this if anyone fancies a trip over!)...

Last week @mrhig was in the chair, getting atmospheric with his pick of Trent Reznor & Atticus Ross's soundtrack to "The Social Network", which had many folks guessing to the end. Thanks to Matt for the pick, and for sailing the frisb across to @Har_Shone who's here with this week's introduction...

"I’m taking a risk here and picking an album I haven’t had time to listen to much myself since it came out in 2016. I’ve loved this artist since my friend dragged me to see him at the Roundhouse when I was still at university, despite him falling a little outside my usual (Morrissey shaped) wheelhouse. Let’s hope his latest offering is up to the earlier stuff I love, otherwise, boy I’ll have egg on my face."

Direct download is here, and the HearBeSpoilers stream is below:

See you at 8pm GMT.

Sunday, 11 February 2018

The Listening Club - 11th February 2018

Greetings folks,

Hope you're all doing fine. Definitely the time of year when my intros get even more repetitive than usual, as Amsterdam maintains its grey freezing exterior, and the weather forecast gleefully predicts more of the same for the forseeable. Le sigh.

Sadness abounds too at the news of the death (at 48!) of Icelandic composer Johann Johannson, best known, I guess, for his soundtracks for films such as Arrival & Theory Of Everything, but there's way more to him than that (check out "The Miners Hymns" and "IBM-1401 A User's Manual" for starters). Such a talented chap, he provided a welcome alternative to a lot of standard film music cliches and zimmer-isms, and will be very much missed...

Last week here on planet #LC, @ohmyliver was in fine form with his pick of the New York Shakespeare Festival's 1976 revival of Brecht & Weill's "The Threepenny Opera", which hit the spot with most of the assembled. Many thanks to him for the pick and for flippint the frisb across to @mrhig, who is right here with this week's intro...

"There are many good reasons why the subject matter of this week’s pick makes a lot of sense in today’s climate.

Like; with the erosion of norms regarding holding office, it’s no longer necessary to have any military service behind you, nor public service at any level, for any length of time, to attain the highest of offices, the leader of the free world. So expect him to be running in 2024, if not in 2020.

Like; he was there at the beginning of the real fake news, before the term was co-opted, repurposed, drained of all meaning. Fake news meant something (and that something wasn’t something good), and he was there as it catapulted in the mainstream, a bit player at least, if not in large part responsible for its propagation. News used to be beholden to standards and rigour; now it’s just about clicks, and a lot of it isn’t even real news.

Like; this whole thing started with the objectification and humiliation of women. Way before Incel, cucks, red pills; way before SJWs, before Gamergate, before doxing, before the alt reich; sorry, I mean Alt Right. Someone was Deplorable right from the start. Washington was built on a swamp; the unsteady house was built on foundations of sand; a global empire, the crossed Rubicon of how we talk to each other and what we believe, the endless litany of Snopesworthy bullshit pushed by your Aunt is all founded on not getting enough attention from the opposite sex. Who is hot and who is not? He’d show them. He’d show them all.


OK. Direct download is here, and the HearMySpoilers stream is below:

See you at 8pm GMT.

Sunday, 4 February 2018

The Listening Club - 4th February 2018

How do folks,

Hope you're all good. Amsterdam is fully in "oh so you think Winter's fading?" mode, so we're looking forward to a week of mega-brr (for here, anyway). So for us groundhogs, hibernation continues, making our way through the films and series of the year, as it is and always shall be...

Last week in #LC land, @Saucer was up to his old tricks with his pick of Broadcast's "Tender Buttons", which beeped and crackled the assembled to mostly positive effect. Thanks to him for the pick, and for flipping the frisb across the pond to @ohmyliver, who is here with this week's intro...

"So the frisbee has come my way this week. 

As always, I’ve had to fight my way through the albums that I’m currently caining, but I can’t pick because surely everyone knows them.  I’m looking at you Scott 4, the only album to have made me and go out and buy a film and to feature a track about the rise of neo-stalinism in Eastern Europe,  Or the albums that I really want to love, but miss the mark a little, I’m looking at you, album of garage punk covers of 80s Detroit Techno/Electro that is Party Store by The Dirtbombs, doubly annoying because I’ve wanted such an album to exist since ‘93.  

Anyhoo, on through to the inner circle of choices.   

I would have picked the ‘if Marx and Spencer did early 90s on the cusp-of-Jungle ‘ardcore’, that is The Modern Warfare 1-3 Special Request.  A well produced smoothness to the clatter of breakbeats, and neon electric piano riffs, in place of the rough mania that characterises a lot of ‘back in the day’ tracks, but has a lot of the dynamics of ardcore,I prefer it toi Luke Vibert’s recent UK Garave side project, which occupies a similar sonic territory. Possibly because it's less knowingly clever about it.  But whilst I really love some of the tracks on it, at least 3 tracks are a bit weak.  It’s also a bit unfair to not listen to it on a big soundsystem at 3AM. 

I could have picked the recently release/reissue Any Other Way, by the reclusive Jackie Shane.  Her then hidden transexuality adds a subtle difference, and a fragility which really works against the early to mid 60s soul backdrop.  But I’ve only just discovered it, and I need to listen to it more.

So I’ve gone with this one.  

It’s the best English translation of an German 20th century jazz influenced opera about the corruption of capitalist London.  The composer’s songs have been covered by a large number of people, Bowie, The Doors, Ella Fitzgerald, Frank Sinatra, and even Robbie Williams.   My love for the excellence of it’s translation, capturing the bile and menace of the original better than other translations, is almost the inverse of my loathing of the various Rat Packy covers of the most famous song from this opera.  The song’s subject is an amoral corrupt murderous shit, not some sort of genial wiseguy for crying out loud.  I was introduced to this opera by my father who used to rely upon my support to overrule my mother’s mild dislike of having to listen to it on cassette on long car journeys. It’s setting of the seedy side of London exciting to my 12 year old ears.

As the Anglosphere slowly crumbles and buckles under the tensions of greed, corruption, and petty nationalism, sit back and listen to the jazz influenced atonal venom of this opera.  You might want to have something uplifting and poppy queued up for after though."

Okaydoke. Direct download is here, and the streamydereamy HearThis is below:

See you at 8pm GMT!