Summer Fridays #9

Summerfriday_9

When I finished this one I thought it was the weirdest, most disjointed yet with obscure synthpop, Northern Soul, reggae, '90s indie rock, new Fugiya & Miyagi and one of the weirdest records of the year. (Wild Beasts.) It's also got my first-ever attempt at ripping vinyl — The Gist's "This is Love" — which I've also included here as a separate download because I figured somebody might want it on it's own and it's never been released on CD (or digitally). But after walking around with it on headphones, I declare it a success. Hope you like it. We've got a week left of Summer as we celebrate it, so make the most of it. Cover art this time is by Kate (by way of Jim Davis, Andy Warhol and Roy Lichtenstein), who you may remember also did #4.

DOWNLOAD SUMMER FRIDAYS #9

Here's the tracklist:

1.  The Passions – I'm in Love with a German Filmstar
2.  Henry Badowski – Henry's in Love
3.  Fat Truckers – I Love Computers
4.  Franz Ferdinand – All for You, Sophia
5.  N.F. Porter – Keep on Keepin' On
6.  Phoenix – Everything is Everything
7.  The Be Be See – You K Gold
8.  The Dambuilders – Shrine
9.  The Cardigans – Fine
10. Friendly Fires – Skeleton Boy
11. The Boo Radleys – Lazarus
12. Wild Beasts – Devil's Crayon
13. Nazz – Open My Eyes
14. Ultra Vivid Scene – Staring at the Sun
15. The Gist – This is Love (downoad the MP3)

16. George A Penny – Win Your Love for Me
17. Dan Solo – You Make That Sound
18. That Petrol Emotion – It's a Good Thing
19. Fujiya & Miyagi – Knickerbocker

As always, I actually mix these songs together (though
they're separate tracks) so the songs segue together. So set controls
to "gapless" or whatever it's called on the player you use. No shuffle
or you'll hurt my feelings!

Liner notes after the jump…

1.  The Passions – I'm in Love with a German Filmstar
I'm not
sure when I first heard this single, originally released in 1981, or
where I was, but I remember I borrowed a pen and wrote down what lyrics
I could so I could later try and look it up. It's like a
half-remembered dream, ethereal and beatiful, and still sounds amazing.
The Passions never did anything else as good as this, but few bands
have.

2.  Henry Badowski – Henry's in Love
Henry Badowski
spent time in a number of UK punk bands (The Damned, Chelsea,
Alternative TV) and then went and made an a solo record of super-catchy
synthpop and new wave. If you can find that album, Life is a Grand, do pick it up. Never been released on CD and doubt it ever will.

3.  Fat Truckers – I Love Computers
Here's a recent obscurity (well, 2003), from the short-lived Sheffield
band Fat Truckers who were mates of Pulp's and mostly made somewhat
annoying (but funny) electro. This was the closest they came to pop.
One of the guys in this band went on to help produce or engineer or
something M.I.A.'s Arular.


4.  Franz Ferdinand – All for You, Sophia

All bands should be judged on their b-sides. Like all quality groups,
Franz Ferdinand made great ones, hiding some of their most interesting
material on the flip. This was the b-side to "Take Me Out" and the
lyrics are actually about the assignation of the other Franz Ferdinad,
you know, the archduke of Austria — the event that got the ball
rolling on WWI. Sophia was Ferdinand's wife, btw. Cracking tune, too.

5.  N.F. Porter – Keep on Keepin' On
I will admit to never hearing this song before watching Grant Gee and
Jon Savages' excellent Joy Division documentary which was more
illuminating for me than Control. Apparently, RCA records
funded a demo and they wanted them to do a cover of this Northern Soul
obscurity. Nothing ever came of it directly but, as the documentary
shows, "Keep on Keepin' On" and "Interzone" kinda sound alike.

6.  Phoenix – Everything is Everything
While these Frenchies work on raising lovechild with Sofia Coppola and well as their upcoming fourth album, let's look back at one of their best singles. From 2004's Alphabetical, "Everything is Everything" is pristine pop so perfectly formed that if they told me all the acoustic guitars were samples I'd believe it. Perfection has it's place.

7.  The Be Be See – You K Gold
These pun-loving Brits lasted two singles before breaking up, and the second one wasn't all that good. But "You K Gold" was, noisy and shambolic but super-catchy too. As they cited the KLF as a primary influence, I'm sure they'll be back in some new guise soon enough.

8.  The Dambuilders – Shrine
The ultimate indie rock love song, where music trancends any language barrier: "I know she likes L7 and I think that she likes me; when she rolls the stocking past her knee… we talk of rock n' roll!" This is circa 1993 and that firey violin you hear is courtesy Joan Goldwasser, aka Joan as Policewoman. The band embarked on a mission to write a song about every state in the Union but didn't get very far.

9.  The Cardigans – Fine
Not sure I have any specific story about this one, which is from The Cardigan's 1995 album "Life," a record I bought on import at Rebel Rebel at a time when I shouldn't have been spending $30 on Swedish imports. But there was a feature in NME about them with a photo of them looking like they did then and I knew I'd love it. One of my favorite albums of that year.

10. Friendly Fires – Skeleton Boy
While I was underwhelmed by their live show, I am really digging Friendly Fires' debut album which is out in about a month. (Sept 23 to be specific.) They manage that trick of being retro and modern all at once. And sexy. Well, until you see the lead singer dance.

11. The Boo Radleys – Lazarus
The Boo Radleys were one of my favorite bands of the early '90s, probably because, of the era's "shoegaze" bands, they were the first to grow restless and start trying new things. "Lazarus" was the beginning of that. It's still arguably their best single… all six minutes of it.

12. Wild Beasts – Devil's Crayon
To be honest I don't know what to make of Wild Beasts, who remind me (and I'm sure others) of  postpunk/New Pop era band The Associates who made some of the weirdest charting singles of 1983. Like the Associates, the Wild card here is frontman Hayden, whose over-the-top, histrionic vocal style will surely be the tipping point for most listeners. A lot of the album will be too much for people, but the single "Devil's Crayon" is Wild Beasts at their most palatable.

13. Nazz – Open My Eyes

I know, it sounds like it's going to be that Fatboy Slim song at first but it's actually Todd Rundgren's '60s garage rock band, Nazz. No "the" please. Just Nazz.

14. Ultra Vivid Scene – Staring at the Sun

You don't hear people talk about Ultra Vivid Scene much anymore but they were actually pretty popular on Alternative Radio and college stations around the time just prior to grunge. UVS was basically one guy, Kurt Ralske, who was also a producer and is now a visual artist with works in MoMA as we speak.

15. The Gist – This is Love  (downoad the MP3)

According to Simon Reynolds' great post punk history, Rip it Up and Start Again, Young Marble Giants' Stuart Moxham never much cared for Alison Statton's voice. So when YMG broke up, Moxham formed The Gist where he could do all the singing. They released one album, Embrace the Herd, before disolving. Moxham's got a nice voice, as you can hear on "This is Love," The Gist's debut single that wasn't appended to the CD reissues of Herd. Not sure why, it's my favorite Gist song, and I've had to enjoy on my turntable only. But I finally decided to try my hand at ripping vinyl. A bit crackly but sounds pretty good I think.

16. George A Penny – Win Your Love for Me
I know absolutely nothing about this which I have on one of the many Trojan compilations scattered about my apartment, but it's one of my favorites. I tend to like reggae singles with organ rather than horns as a general rule.

17. Dan Solo – You Make That Sound
Dan Warden is one half of London's Superimposers who make records that are purposefully, wonderfully vintage-sounding. (Miles Copeland is the other half. No not the IRS Records guy. A different one.) They a who also run Wonderfulsound which is a record label / sound design / production /music supervision house. Where the Superimposers are lush and dreamy, Dan Solo makes records that sound like 1967 Los Angeles. "You Make That Sound" is particularly Monkees-ish. Also check out The Superimposers' excellent album from last year, Harpsichord Treacle.

18. That Petrol Emotion – It's a Good Thing

TPE were the Undertones minus Feargal Sharkey with  transplanted Seatle-ite Steve Mack taking over on lead vocals. Sacrilege, I know, but I prefer TPE to the Undertones because Sharkey's voice grates on me to this day. Some of their albums suffer from Bad '80s Production, but their debut, Manic Pop Thrill, still holds up.

19. Fujiya & Miyagi – Knickerbocker
Makers of one of 2006's best album, Transparent Things, Fugiya & Miyagi have since added a live drummer to the band though I don't think you can tell from the first single from their forthcoming album, Lightbulbs, due out next month. All the F&M trademarks are here: the one-chord, driving Krautrock jam, lyrics that play with the sound of words more than the meaning.

3 Comments

  1. I know absolutely nothing about this which I have on one of the many Trojan compilations scattered about my apartment, but it's one of my favorites. I tend to like reggae singles with organ rather than horns as a general rule. If you want to save more on Black Friday, visit online stores and check out great black friday coupons 2017 and codes and shop all your favorite brands with the best shopping experience of remarkable savings.

  2. we talk of rock n' roll!" This is circa 1993 and that firey violin you hear is courtesy Joan Goldwasser, networking assignment help aka Joan as Policewoman. The band embarked on a mission to write a song about every state in the Union but didn't get very far

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