Saturday, November 11, 2006

So much to answer for.

So I went back to work yesterday after a three-day sabbatical, spent fighting off a horrendous cold. In the morning, I felt absolutely dreadful. I was completely expecting to be home by midday, such was the state of my body. This cold has just totally fucking ravaged me, getting into my muscles and bones, making me shiver and coaxing juddering spasms out of muscles I didn't even know I had.

Then something strange happened. At around 12.30pm, I suddenly realised that, actually, despite the fact that my lungs were desperately trying to force something devilish out through my throat, I felt alright. That 'alright' feeling then blossomed into an all-round general wellness. By 1pm, I felt pretty much fighting fit and ready to face the rest of the day down, like John Rambo taking on all-comers.

I intially put this down to it being Friday and the de-mob feeling that you get when the working week is nearly done. So I saw it out until 4.05pm with a slight spring in my step. Then, I left work, turned right onto High St., then right again onto Church St., making my way to Piccadilly Records because I'd also found out that I had more money in the bank than I thought I had. I deserved a treat.

I left Piccadilly with the new Spektrum album in my bag (I paid for it, don't worry) and made my way back down Church St., past the barrow boys, randomly pointing at fruit, making eye-contact with me and barking out a succession of numbers. Then, I was involved in a mini face-off with a pedestrian coming the other way. There was no way he was going to move for me, so I stepped out of the way, onto a loose paving stone, which promptly, predictably flicked a shitload of water up my outside leg.

All this time though, despite the usual annoyances of the metropolis I call home, the smile didn't shift. In fact, the annoyances (arrogant people, shrill fruit & veg salesman, loose flags) just made the smile broader. I thought to myself, "I fucking love this city". It's true. I've been about, I've seen plenty of other places, but nowhere I've ever been holds a candle to Manchester. Someone said to me recently that they blamed Manchester for feeling down, but a fresh, uncut hit of this city can reverse the darkest of depressions. So, fuck the country, fuck London, fuck New York, this is where I am and this is where I want to stay.

Anyway, after that heartwarming story, here's some music I'd like to share with you...

Robyn - Cobrastyle (mp3) (At the end of the month, Robyn is being launched in the UK. I'm not sure quite what this means, but when 'Konichiwa Bitches' is getting airplay, I don't really care. Anyway, she's due to release The Rakamonie EP then, which includes 'Konichiwa Bitches', a new, stripped-down version of 'Be Mine', and covers of Saul Williams' 'List Of Demands' with Jenny Wilson, Prince's 'Jack U Off' and this run-through of the Teddybears' ubiquitous euro-pop hit, which Robyn manages to make all her own. Nice.)

Spektrum - Moody Feels Good (mp3) (Slightly more downbeat than we're used to from London's Spektrum, but there's dark ESG-like magic going on here. Get on it!)

N*E*R*D - Run To The Sun (mp3) (I've recently reacquainted myself with the original electronic version of N*E*R*D' s In Search Of... album, if only to remind me of a time when we all thought that Pharrell and Chad Hugo were going to save music. Have you heard that new Gwen Stefani tune?! Awful, just awful. This is still great though.)

Paul Zaza & Carl Zittrer - Prom Night Theme (mp3) (I stumbled across this the other day, it's on the soundtrack to the shite Jamie Lee Curtis-starring horror film. I don't remember the music being this good in it at all. The theme is pure, sparkling, vaguely cheesy disco, not unlike Donna Summer's 'Hot Stuff'. Check it out.)

Escort - Karawane (mp3) (Brilliant, afro-skewing disco from the group that brought us 'Starlight'. Ones to watch, definitely.)

Right, that's it for now.



P.S. Everyone should watch the stunning, poignant documentary, Young At Heart, on More4 at 9.10pm tonight, if only to see octogenarians singing 'Schizophrenia' by Sonic Youth. Visit their website here.


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