Record Store Day 2014

It’s that time of year again. Yay!

Not going to lie to you, I have been dying of yuk all week (conjunctivitis, chest infection, swollen glands, sore throat, fever…) and could probably done with not getting up at stupid o’clock on Saturday and standing in a cold alley for 3 hours. But I did. I had to sit down (before I fell down) once or twice but I did it. After 1.5 hours my wonderful cousin Adam appeared and brought me a coffee. He’s a good boy.image

The first people in the queue had been there since about 1am. I was glad to be asleep in bed at 1am, though I admire their determination and miss being so enthusiastic about things. Good for them. I think I finally got in to the shop around 10.30am. Eyes on the prize. I wanted the Suede single and I was going to get it…image

…and get it I did. Along with other lovely things. I got Adam the Machinehead record, the queue was headed to St Mary Street by the time he got there, and he did get me a coffee, so it was only fair. I’m a nice cousin too. We’re nice people. It’s genetic.image

Have you ever seen a record ever so pink as this?image

I actually picked up the Pink Panther LP on Monday as Ashli from Spillers was tweeting about it on Saturday night and they had some left. Noink! It’s an awesome record, I’m really glad I got it. Also, pink as heck. The Suede single is really good too, sounds like it belongs on Head Music which is underrated as far as Suede albums go. Have a listen, it’s so 1998.

Remember – a record shop is for life. Look after your record shop and it will look after you.

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www.recordstoreday.co.uk

www.spillersrecords.co.uk

 

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Music Monday

If you follow me on Twitter or are lucky enough to have spoken to me last week, it will come as no surprise to you that my Music Monday recommendation this week is the lovely Tigercub.

Imagine that The Kinks and Nirvana went into the machine from The Fly. That’s TIgercub. Melodic trashy neu-grunge that gets stuck in your head and you don’t want it to leave. I woke up with Little Rope stuck in my head this morning. Rad.

Official Tigercub press photo. I didn't take this, though I wish I had done.

L-R – James, Jimi, Jamie
The nicest guys in rock aside from Dave Grohl.

I’ve been stalking the 3 J’s for a week now, best stalking ever. On Friday night we drove over to Bristol to see them and Dinosaur Pile-Up. Again. Best random decision made on a Tuesday night ever. The gig was immense. It was in a little room (half the size of upstairs at Buffalo) at a place called The Louisiana. Nice. It had aircon, which was really nice but totally ineffective once DPU came on and absolutely caned it. Sweat everywhere. We could have drowned. There was a sort of pseudo-moshpit, and I might have invaded the stage just a little bit. Anyway, back to Tigercub.

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They had a red light thing going on, so all my photos are red (not bad from my phone mind, well done Sony – it’s great when it works). I got another shout out from the band, because I’m awesome.DSC_2708

Let’s just take a moment to be in awe of Jimi and his amazing bass skills. Yes, I do have a soft spot for bass players but he really is very very good and I am jealous.DSC_2709

I really hope they come back to Cardiff (or somewhere nearby, have car will travel). If you get the chance to see them play live then bloody well do so. Take them some cookies or something, I’ve learned this week that bands LOVE cookies. Ask Dinosaur Pile-Up, they’ll tell you.

Here’s their video for Little Rope. Watching this makes me feel like it’s 1995 and we’ve just got cable. I spent hours watching MTV. I could tolerate Edith Bowman and Cat Deeley back then, just about. I remember Donna Air announcing that Rod Hull had died (they’d been taking the piss out of him a few days before). So 90s was the best music programme around, with epic things like “Pants Win Prizes” where you had to send in your songs with one word changed to pants. Earl and Asif (Asif Funky Noodle, with his funky noodle dance) came up with my absolute favourite – If White America Told The Truth For One Day It’s Pants Would Fall Apart. Amazing. I always had a tape in the video ready to record my favourite songs. I think I had The New Pollution by Beck on one tape about 14 times. Heck, it’s a great video!

Keep up with all the Tigercub action on their SoundcloudFacebook and Twitter pages. Tell ’em Beth sent you 🙂

Nature Nurture

I bloody love Dinosaur Pile-Up. Even though I keep getting told off for saying “rad” in my description of them I can’t think of anything more accurate. They are so so good, and last night’s gig was no different.IMG_20130715_213826

They rocked my little socks off so they did! I danced. A lot. My poor battered Converse enjoyed themselves as they’ve been enjoying gigs for over 10 years now.

I’d been promising Matt that next time they came to Cardiff I’d bring them cookies, so Sunday afternoon (the hottest damn day of the year) was spent fighting with the oven to make cookies. They enjoyed the cookies. Score.

DPU were supported by Max Raptor and Tigercub. I wasn’t expecting to enjoy Max Raptor quite as much as I did. They’re pretty hardcore, much more so than I usually listen to (sort of like Gallows, only I don’t like Gallows) but a really great live act. I think that’s what clinched it for me. They had so much energy and presence. Indeed Wil was literally in our faces during their set. Chris and Matt on guitar and bass were something else. They started off well groomed with slick rockabilly hair and EXPLODED with rock when they played! Boom! I actually think I was almost moshing. Almost. “Rocking out in the corner” is how Matt described it. I’ll take that.

Tigercub I absolutely LOVED. I met them at the bar before the gig “Hello, Tigercub!” and had a little chat. They’re all hair and long legs and awesome. If you, like me, pine for the college rock of the 1990s then Tigercub are for you. If you like good rock music, then Tigercub are for you.IMG_20130715_215927 I was blown away by Jimi’s mad skills on the bass. As you may be aware, I’m soft for an awesome bassist and he made it look effortless. Every bass player last night was amazing. Blew. My. Mind.

This post cannot accurately convey the absolute joy that I had in watching all these bands last night. So much talent in one small room. I would urge the world to give them a listen and maybe buy a CD. Or a tote bag. It’s great bands like this that should be the future, not mass produced plastic singing competition winners. These boys put their hearts into their music, and they damn well deserve the recognition. I would be so proud if DPU got to the top 10. I could say “I made cookies for them”. That would indeed be totally rad.

Music Monday (and some life planning)

Saturday marked 2 months until I hit the big 3-0. On Saturday I had a big tidy-up. My bed looked like this:DSC01632Yup. 3 dinosaurs and an owl. The dinosaurs were Christmas and Valentine presents. I am nearly 30. I DON’T CARE!! Dinosaurs make me happy, and the guy I share this bed with bought 2 of them for me. THAT, my friends, is love.

But anyway, 30. Yeah, it’s starting to bother me now.  Well, not bothering me, but I’m acutely aware that it means I am a proper adult. One that drives a car, intends to buy a house one day and does food shopping to buy actual food and not just crisps and ice cream, though if there’s a dinosaur in the supermarket I’m likely to buy it. I’m feeling the need to do something with myself in the next 10 years. I feel a new list coming on.

Back to the music. I revisited one of my favourite albums this weekend, The Sound of McAlmont & Butler because it’s awesome. I will never tire of listening to Yes. It’s truly beautiful. David McAlmont has the most incredible voice, and Bernard’s guitar is sublime as always. Throw in some strings and you have a timeless wonder that, I think, will never get old.

One of the things on my 30 list will be to have a singing lesson with David McAlmont. This will happen.

Music Monday

In an attempt to share more glimpses of my everyday mind I thought I might try some regular bloggy things. “Music Monday” seems like  a doozy.

We got the Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness reissue boxset for Christmas.IMG_20121226_125319 It’s beautiful. Since then I have had this song in my head. It shows no sign of going away, and I’m totally fine with that:

This album reminds me of high school, of Owen playing Lily (My One and Only) on the piano in the music room, and mostly of the Christmas (1996 or 97, I forget) when Vicki asked her mum for 3 albums. They were Mellon Collie, Vitalogy by Pearl Jam…. and the eponymous album by the Backstreet Boys. That’s how we rolled, we were 13 after all, and she had a thing for boys with floppy blonde hair.