Today’s blog is mainly about music, but it’s impossible this week to ignore the continuing British political soap opera. Hopefully some of the common-sense amendments being put forward to Theresa May’s doomed deal with the EU will be passed in the Westminster Parliament tomorrow. This will hopefully democratically allow reality to be applied to the whole Brexit fiasco. I have 12 tracks on a playlist which have been inspiring me this month. I’m listening as I write these words.
Link to the Spotify playlist here
1. Hysteria - Kurt Vile is a wonderful calming influence in times of personal and political turmoil. Although a modern act, his music reminds me of the glorious eccentricity of ‘laid back’ cool America reminiscent of everyone from Jonathan Richman to Lou Reed, from Wall of Voodoo to ‘Wailing’ Neil Young to Frank Zappa. Brilliant droll lyrics, delivered easy with a smell of sunshine.
2. Factor of Faith - The Red Hot Chilli peppers are the epitome of what men should be in their 50s! I use them as a yardstick against which to measure energy and attitude.
3. Motor City Steel – The Dandy Warhols are for me ultimate rock and roll Americana. Again, intelligent lyrics delivered in mellow baritone.
4. Relative Poverty – Go-Kart Mozart are wonderfully cheesy lo-fi on this tongue in cheek pop. My manager keeps complaining I spend more on food and coffee than the gross national product of a Third World country! My guilty pleasure…
5. Slow Burn – Kasey Musgrove. I’d love to do a duet with this woman! Our new Fischer-Z album will likely have some collaboration on it. What a voice. Real class. Dare I say a Joni or Carole for the 21st century. If any of you guys know her, please put me in touch!
6. Pay no Mind – Beach House are not afraid to play a great slow song, with fab reverberation. I have always approached creative things at high speed. I’ll take my time over certain domestic tasks, but at the moment I’m trying to find some beauty in doing my personal accounts!
7. Hot Pink – Let’s Eat Grandma are absolutely original, fearless, real. My God, perfectly formed music from teenagers. I meet a lot of cynics my age who rattle on about how all the best music was made years ago – bollocks! I love ‘binky-bonky’ brilliant and reminds me not all clever art is dour and serious. Go girlies go!
8 . Be the Cowboy – Mitski is/are a bit of a mystery to me, but I’m enjoying the amalgam of styles; some 80’s synth merging with jangly guitars that get a bit epic in places. Note to self – Don’t forget to get epic at least once a day.
9. Family - Blood Orange presenting some brilliant spoken word over ‘bungalow ranch style’ cool. Form is everything and don’t you forget it.
10. The Games We Play - Pusha T DAYTONA is evolved hip-hop. It all seems a little more connected to the British urban streets these days. The terrible rise in teenage knife crime in the UK with kids living out ‘Gangsta’ pantomimes on and off line is a tragedy. Public Enemy, Ice Cube, NWA, the Pharcyde and many more could be good listening to enlighten the would-be petty gangsters…)
11. Golden Trunks – Arctic Monkeys show me that radical changes in direction can be an amazing creative boost. I’ve always been keen on all the dangerous artists in the world. No gain without some risk. However, there should be more care taken in politics when millions of peoples’ lives can be adversely affected by a knee-jerk decision.
12. Bridge over Troubled Water – Simon and Garfunkel are one of my references for great 60’s production. And why not?! I’m a huge Walker Brothers fan – Songs and production.
Keep warm over the next week folks. I’m trying to seal up the holes in my bedroom window frames with draft excluder! JW.