"Our old singer is a sex criminal"
Signs of a misspent week, I guess, the amount of blogging that I've been getting through in the last few days. I've been off work this week (paid holiday) in case you hadn't noticed and all I've been doing is surfing the 'net, listening to music and generally being a bit of a sloth. Other than going to see those two Young Knives instores the other day, I've hardly left the house other than to go to the shop for cigarettes. I'm out tomorrow though, so I'm pulling a late one tonight to get some stuff down on the page before I forget about it.
Here's what's been rocking the house this past week or so...
When Mclusky called it quits in January, 2005, there was no great obits in the music press. There was no footage on the news of fans hanging around outside singer, Andy Falkous' house weeping. There was little or no recognition from anywhere to be completely honest. Even I was a bit nonplussed about the whole thing, having only ever heard a few of their songs before then (although I do own the 'There Ain't No Fool In Ferguson' single, though I can't remember why. Maybe someone slipped it into my bag in HMV thinking that I'll thank them for it somewhere down the line), but it's only recently, with the release of career retrospective, Mcluskyism that I've realised (and I'm sure I'm not the only one) that Mclusky were one of the greatest bands to have been virtually ignored while they were actually active.
The deficit between their greatness and their actual fiscal and critical success is a yawning gap, as Mclusky truly were one of the greatest bands of their time. It's just a shame that no-one noticed. Well, in an act of shutting the gate after the horse has bolted that I'm sure the band would find hilarious, it is your duty to discover them, take them to your bosom and hope and pray for a reunion.
Mcluskyism comprises three discs of fierce, scabrous, intelligent hardcore punk, the first of which compiles the 'hits', the second the b-sides and the third is a rarities set, taking in session tracks and live recordings that show the band as adept onstage as they were in the studio. Some of the live stuff comes from their last ever gig and portrays the band in fine form, dealing with hecklers and bantering like seasoned comics. In fact, the wit of Mclusky is what made them great, with their songs containing more side-splitting one-liners than the average Emo Philips concert.
If any Mclusky fans are reading this, post your favourite Mclusky lyric in the comments section. I'll start the ball rolling...
"If you can cope in this hopeless hepatitis pisswreck, molotov cocktail, monobrow shithole then baby, you can cope anywhere at all." ('There Ain't No Fool In Ferguson')
Mclusky - There Ain't No Fool In Ferguson (mp3)
Mclusky - She Will Only Bring You Happiness (mp3)
Mclusky - To Hell With Good Intentions (Live at ULU) (mp3)
Buy Mcluskyism (and while you're at it, get the rest of the albums) from Play.com.
Now, moving from Mclusky to jazz may be a little jarring for some, but this is yet another album that I feel is my duty to bring to your attention. Released this week on Stones Throw is the sophomore album from Georgia Anne Muldrow, Olesi: Fragments Of An Earth and it is probably the best album that can be loosely described as jazz that I've heard in a long while. Now, I'll 'fess up to not being the best authority on jazz music, but I know it when I hear it and this sure is jazz.
And soul. And hip-hop. In fact, this record manages to cover a broad range of musical styles in its forty-odd minutes. Muldrow is a bit of a musical magpie, never stopping in one particular place for long enough for it to grow stale. Actually, one gripe that I have with the album is that some ideas are ditched just as they are getting interesting. Most of the tracks are tantalising glimpses into what Muldrow could really do if she just stopped letting her eclecticism get in the way.
This is a small complaint though as what Olesi is, most of the time, is a wildly innovative and entertaining ride, taking in everything from Nikki Giovanni-esque proselytising to sugary, Angie Stone-like soul. One of the most daring, and best records of the year, it comes highly recommended.
Buy it from Piccadilly Records.
Now, we all surely agree that the new Scissor Sisters single, 'I Don't Feel Like Dancing' is a load of old shite, but when life hands Erol Alkan lemons, that guy's sure to make lemonade. In an astonishing feat of turd-polishing, Alkan's remix of said abomination is, well, pretty darn fine. I suppose we should expect nothing less than greatness from the man who is on his way to becoming remixer of the year, after his dazzling turns for Hot Chip, Justice, Daft Punk and, in his Mustapha 3000 guise, Headman. This new one is similar in style to his take on 'Boy From School', in that he allows an element of the track to breathe and stretch for eight-plus minutes, giving the whole thing a spacey, tripped-out vibe. Seems pointless just talking about it though, when I could just as easily put it up as an mp3 and let y'all just take it in for yourselves.
I'm sure I'll do some more blogging at some point over the weekend, but if I don't, make sure you enjoy yourselves, drink responsibly, don't do anything I wouldn't do, yada, yada, yada.