LYRICS OF 2014.

11 01 2015

Are we over the “New year, new me” bullshit yet? Are we all aware that you can change whenever you want, you don’t need to wait for midnight on the 1st January to do so? And the gym is open beyond January… Alright, I’ll go back to the past 12 months.

Everybody likes to inflict their “ALBUMS OF *insert year*” upon anyone towards the end of the year. Some mention records that nobody probably listened to just to seem “cool” or they slag off good ones just because they did well. It’s all a bit daft, and the only person’s view of a record that really does matter is probably the fans who love the band. I could be wrong, I most likely am but I’m not someone who aims to ever be right. I don’t care enough, so with that..I decided to put together my list of lyrics of the past year. Lyrics that I listen to intensely and cause me to play the same song about 20 times in a short amount of time and not wanting to listen to anything else for a while. They could be lyrics that someone else thinks is shit, but what does that matter? It’s obvious who I’m going to write about because it is those who have put out records last year that I will probably still play all the time. I judge a year by the music not what happens in my life, I’ve again, probably got it all wrong but it’s things like that,that sort of stop me from getting on a plane and fucking off without saying a word. Oh and I’ve not got much ££££ to do so anyway. Maybe one day I’ll grow a backbone. Until then….

D’Angelo- The Charade. Towards the end of the year, the King of Soul FINALLY, after 14 years, put a record out. Black Messiah was not just one of the best records of the year but it was the most important. The whole message behind it stood for something bigger than those who were patiently waiting for a new D’Angelo record could imagine. Everywhere went nuts when it came out, and it is was beautiful. There are so many wonderful lyrics on Black Messiah, but this one from The Charade is one that really hit me. It sums up the brutality that was happening (and still is) in America. “Degradation so loud that you can’t hear the sound of our cries.” If anything can sum up the events and injustice, it is probably that one. You can tell from any D’Angelo song that he’s someone who watches and takes note of human behavior in all its ways. Black Messiah was full of hope and pain. It brought a sense of unity and a bit of peace that was much needed. Again proving that Music is one of the most powerful tools there is.

Morrissey- Earth Is The Loneliest Place. I probably would have gone for Kick The Bride Down The Aisle or Staircase At The University, but there is something about Earth Is The Loneliest Place that I couldn’t ignore. For those that hate Morrissey, there’s a load more of us that love him. Love conquers all, right? Morrissey’s lyrics are a huge part of my life and a load of others. The way he writes is something else, he gets to the very core of you and you feel as if he’s writing the songs about you. Is he saving your life or is he just able to put it all across better than you could? Personally, I think it is both. For me it is the line, “And humans are not really very humane. And earth is the loneliest planet of all.” Some lyrics just speak for themselves really. We have all seen how cruel humans can be, and we have all felt lonely. You can feel lonely anywhere, and our planet earth is a prime example of that. But if you are feeling lonely, go to a record store. Just like Penny Lane says in Almost Famous.

Band Practice-Magic! Last year one of the finest duos around and New York’s finest, Band Practice released their debut record. Make Nice is full of songs that make you feel like you’re part Tina Belcher/part Patti Smith. All music should aspire to that, the world would be a better place for sure. My favourite song off the record is Band Practice Theme Song, but this lyric from Magic! is my favourite : “When I walk inside my door , the world seems safe and it offers more.” We all know daily life can be a drag, a real pain in the behind and sometimes as soon as you step outside, you wish you hadn’t. If you’ve never experienced that, then you’ve never taken three tubes to work and had several items and body parts shoved in your face. It’s not even 8am and you’ve had enough. Songs like this a real comfort and stop you from punching yourself in the face out of sheer despair, or you know..punching someone else because all they are doing is glaring at their phone gormlessley and not watching where they are going.

BANKS- Fuck ‘Em Only We Know. Goddess was one of the best debut records to come out last year, and Banks I feel, is the only R&B singer that comes close to Aaliyah. When Aaliyah died, she left a huge void and she’s irreplaceable. Most are, and we dispose of singers so easily, but Aaliyah was so rare. Bans has that gentle feel to her music that Aaliyah created. Fuck ’em reminds me of a song that would have sounded amazing on Aaliyah’s last record, there’s something about this song. Something really special. Banks, like all great songwriters is someone you can tell watches others. Whether it be strangers or people she knows, she takes their story and turns it into a work of art. I adore this lyric: “Even addicted to your grumpy face. I know exactly just how many kisses fit between your eyes.”
It’s such an observant and adoring lyric. If you’ve felt like that, then you’ve experienced real love.

Julian Casablancas & The Voidz- Human Sadness.  I love the way Julian sings in that tired, fed-up and frustrated way. He makes you really feel what he is saying. Sure on the Tyranny record it’s hard to make out what he’s singing, but when you read the lyrics, you see another person who is massively observant and is paying close attention to how people behave. Human Sadness is an intense song, and many would say that this is one of the best songs Julian has ever done, and they’re not wrong and is evident in the lyric: “Understanding is more important than love. If not money will always trump justice.” If you’ve seen how corrupt the world can be, you’ll have seen that those with money will always outweigh most things, Julian’s picks up on how unfair it is yet it is something that may possibly never change.

Warpaint-Disco//Very. Warpaint are an easy band to write about. I don’t know what it is about them, but they are one of the few bands that when I listen to them, I just want to write down every thought and feeling that they bring to life. When music is this magical, you really cannot let it go. Disco//Very is unlike most of their songs. You know that drop during Undertow? Well, all of Disco//Very is that moment for about 3 minutes. It’s bloody euphoric, and I adore this lyric : “Only in the sound of the voices I scream.” That line is a kick to the soul, it smacks you and you just feel..as sickeningly clichéd as it sounds, it just makes you feel alive. If you’ve seen them perform this live, you will see that nobody stands still. It’s got that wonderful mystical Warpaint feel surrounding it, and you can’t help but play it over and over. It’s delightfully infectious.

Nadine Shah-Stealing Cars. If her voice doesn’t move you, then go see someone about that. Her voice is bold and gloriously powerful. I remember hearing Runaway and just being in awe of this stunning voice, Nadine is something else. What I love about Nadine is the strength in her voice, the only other singer who is as strong as her has to be Anna Calvi. Both singers can break your heart and terrify you in the next breath. That’s what makes them powerful and bloody brilliant. “Check your pulse when I speak.” Take that line how you want, but when you listen and I mean really listen to Nadine sing it, you feel as if she’s talking right to you. Nadine is such a brilliant songwriter and I firmly believe her new record is going to be one of the best ones to come out this year.

Dum Dum Girls- Too True To Be Good. Dee Dee is an underrated songwriter. She’s as powerful as Patti, and she sings in such a clear way and with such purpose. Much like Patti. Too True was in my Top 3 records of 2014, and again is one I’ve not grown tired of. You never grow tired of your favourite bands do you. Too True To Be Good is lyrically my favourite off the record, and I love Dee Dee’s voice throughout the song. When I first heard it, I became hooked on the lyric: “It’s hard to outrun a devil from behind.” Dee Dee’s lyrics are outbursts of truths and sources of comfort, you can hear it in all its glory in songs like Coming Down. She just knows how to phrase something in a way that hits you in the gut. There’s nobody else like her.

2:54- South. When 2:54 FINALLY released The Other I, it felt like my birthday and Christmas had come at once. The Other I was released 2 days before my birthday so I wasn’t far off. I immediately fell in love with the record and I was so proud of the sound they had created on the record. It was still eerie like their debut, but it had something else. Something I’m still trying to find the words to describe, but I’m yet to get there. My favourite song off The Other I changes by the day. I seem to flirt between South and Pyro. Pyro’s got this brilliant attitude to it, but South has this lyric : “Got nowhere to, nowhere to put misshapen love.” It’s obvious how much I adore this band (I’m using my work holiday to go see them on tour) and this lyric just made me adore them even more. You know how sometimes a band you really love, and you don’t think they can amaze you anymore? Turns out they always can….

2:54-Blindfold. The drumming on this just proves why Alex Robins is one of the best around, and the video to this is beautifully shot. It captures London in all its beauty. I saw them play this at Union Chapel and they made a powerful anthem sound like a haunting chant. It was just beautiful. None of this has really been written in order, but my favourite lyric of 2014 has to be “Everybody says I’ve got to say what’s on my mind. But how do I say, that am I really losing my way. Every day.” If you pick apart 2:54’s lyrics, they read like chilling poetry that would cause Poe to freak out slightly. Colette is a brilliant songwriter absolutely brilliant and the way in which Hannah writes the music just goes so well with Colette’s words. It’s got to be a sister thing because nobody else comes close. There are so many reasons as to why I regard 2:54 so highly. Partly because they are genuine and lovely people, partly because their music takes you some place else and partly because they’re unlike anyone else. Their music is spooky but euphoric. It’s not too late to get a ticket for their tour next month….





THE LIVING EYES.

26 11 2014

 

 

Having not learnt my lesson from subjecting myself to really loud music on Monday evening, I’ve found a band who are brilliantly loud and sound like everything I want in a band. Oh how many times have a said that? How many times have I really meant it? I just love certain noises, and The Living Eyes are a certain noise. I write this as London looks like a grey abyss. There are certain bands you should listen to when the weather is like this. The Living Eyes are not this band, instead they take you to a warmer climate.

The Living Eyes will be releasing Living Large on 19th January. Put some Christmas money aside and treat yourself to what will evidently be one of 2015’s highlights. For those who adore the fuzzy tunes of Garage rock, The Living Eyes will certainly wet your whistle (calm down.) They remind me of a band that I never compare anyone to. One because no one sounds like them and two, I bloody hate comparisons. But I’m on my lunch break and this is as good as I’m going to get. They remind me of my beloved The Gruesomes. The Gruesomes were this raw and fearless band that shaped a lot of what I listen to. They are also the only band that I love that I’ve yet to own something on vinyl by. Finding any vinyl copies of their music is bloody expensive. I live in hope. I did find a copy of a Count Five record in a Parisian record shop last year. I’ve got a little hope, so I’ll cling.

The Living Eyes will make you feel as if you’ve donned your best Bermuda shorts and head for the nearest beach. But if you take one look outside, maybe just sit in your bedroom and flail your limbs about in a carefree fashion. I’m at work, I can’t do any of that. No fun.

The Living Eyes are a mighty band from Geelong (Australia.) Australia has an amazing Garage rock dare I say it, yes I shall “scene.” It’s on a par with most of the stuff from the States. They’re not afraid to be loud, and of course they capture the beach-vibe more than most. The Living Eyes are one of the most thrilling bands I’ve heard in a long time. I know bugger all about them. I don’t know how many records they have out, I don’t know how long they’ve been going for. I know nothing that would seem “vital.” All I know is that I bloody love them. That’s enough, right? In this case, love is enough.

Some will say these guys are Punk, some will beg to differ. Never beg, you’re not a dawwg. Anyway, the thing is the REAL essence of Punk is alive. It’s not in a shitty piss-pop “Punk” band like Paramore. Oh no. Not in the slightest. It’s in bands like The Living Eyes. These dudes are fearless and probably play recklessly. I’m talking playing until they bleed and fling their guitars around and nearly smacking each other. Blood, sweat and fear. They’re the kind of band that wake up that lazy part of you. The part that doesn’t come out too often. They are far too good to ignore and of course, to play quietly.

So yes, Punk is alive and well in bands like The Living Eyes who aren’t afraid to play with ferocity. I don’t know what their tour plans are, but go see them when and where you can. Maybe take a spare shirt with you if you have to get public transport home afterwards. Or just embrace all of the sweat and chaos. The latter is probably the best option.

Maybe you’ll dance to these guys, maybe you’ll break stuff due to uncontrollable movements. Whatever you do, make sure you play them loud and turn everyone you know onto these guys. It doesn’t get more exciting than this. Maybe they will save us all with their gloriously brutal sound.

Living Large will be released via Agitated Records. New song from the record right here: https://soundcloud.com/goldstarpr/living-eyes-high-standards





CANDY DARLING.

10 07 2014

 

 

Sometimes you hear something, and within seconds you know it is one of the greatest things you’ve exposed your ears to. It’s probably how most felt when they heard the likes of the Velvet Underground to Frank Zappa. If it slightly weird, there’s a good chance it’ll be bloody brilliant. Who wants to hear songs about how a person gives you butterflies anyway? No thanks.

Candy Darling (yes, named after one of Warhol’s supertars) are from Bristol. Candy Darling have that beautiful, filthy sound that is in the likes of Little Death Machine, Wax Idols with a hint of Lou Reed’s Transformer. Their sound is brilliantly weird and thankfully unlike anything you are forced to listen to. There’s a smutty fuzzy sound flowing through their debut single, Money.Which I guess fits the notion that those with a lot of money have a tendency to be corrupt and depraved. But aren’t we all to an extent. We just don’t show it.

Candy Darling have a fabulous trashy feel to their music; Money is the kind of song you’ll have stuck in your head for days, just itching to yell the chorus at someones face. You should do it, there’s nothing wrong with a public display of recklessness and lack of self-control. Don’t be shy about it. I’d imagine their live shows are dark, wild and deeply enthralling. You don’t need an acoustic guitar to grip a crowd. Be loud, be bold and be what your peers turn their noses up at. Candy Darling are a band I’d typically love, they’ve got something really magical about them that I love.

The b-side to Money is Temples. Temples shows just how strong and gorgeous Emily’s voice is. Temples has a proper 80s Goth-ish kind of thing going on. As you know The Jesus And Mary Chain are touring in November (some of us have spent £100 on tickets and feel mighty good about it!) and I think it is safe to say that Candy Darling would be an ideal opening act. Temples is like the Psychocandy record with synths; it’s just incredible and all I want from a band. Emily’s voice on Temples reminds me of Shirley Manson on Garbage’s Version 2.0 record. It is strong, moving and captivating.

With music seeming to be more and more throwaway, it’s bands like Candy Darling who kick some meaning and purpose into it at all. If you can move people, make them think, do anything other than stand still then you’ve created something worth treasuring- which is exactly what Candy Darling have done. With just one single (that’s not even out yet) they’ve become one of the best new bands of the year. The ideal band to hear in dark and cramped basement bar to just lose a bit of your mind to.

They only formed a yer ago, but everything about them just makes you think they’ve been together for decades. Quite simply, one of the best bands in this country.

You can order a copy of Money here: http://candydarlingmusic.bandcamp.com/releases it is out 1st September. Treat yourself to some pink vinyl.

And you can listen to Money/Temples here: https://soundcloud.com/candydarling1





MORRISSEY-World Peace Is None Of Your Business.

8 07 2014

 

“I turned silences and nights into words.

What was unutterable, I wrote down.

I made the whirling world stand still.” 

                        -Arthur Rimbaud

 

There is no greater feeling than your favourite singer releasing a record. You wait, you ache and you wait some more leading up to it. You tremble in the first listen knowing you are listening to something truly remarkable. It doesn’t matter who this singer/band is to you, it’s just a mutual feeling. Especially when that person is more than likely responsible for you still being alive….just. Sort of. Depends on the day.

Could I ever write an unbiased piece on Morrissey? No. Will I defend him? Yes, well..within reason. Do I think World Peace is his best work? Of course. Lord knows how long Morrissey fans have been waiting for this. And of course, the cynics will come out in their masses to find fault in it. They probably like Kings Of Leon or something equally dull.

World Peace Is None Of Your Business is flamboyantly clever, dry and accurate. It is everything I adore about Morrissey. I thought after reading his biography a handful of times I really understood my love and admiration for him, but I was wrong. But when am I ever right. I thought  understood my love for him, turns out I didn’t. Not quite.World Peace is lyrically a work of art, and I will gladly place it next to Vauxhall And I as his best work. He has this way of getting to the root of an emotion, churning it out and spitting it out for you to taste. And when you do, you understand. You understand whatever it is that is choking you.

I’m Not A Man is lyrically one of the strongest songs on the record as it dips into society’s skewed vision of what it is to be a man. A nod to Meat Is Murder of sorts is hinted in the line, “I’d never kill or eat an animal, and I never would destroy this planet I’m on.” Man destroys, and Morrissey’s sensitive and gentle disposition feels out of place on this planet. You don’t have to be a man to identify with this, you just have to human. Gentle and kind.

As I listen to the record, I start to make sense of my love for Morrissey. It’s his words and how he uses them. There’s always been comfort for me in his words. If I could communicate using his lyrics, I’d probably feel less awkward in my skin. Too much skin. He has this way of telling it like it is without being grand or pretentious, although some would argue that he is. If that’s the case then they’ve probably never paid any attention to his lyrics. His words are why he is a hero to so many.

I’ve read a few reviews where they comment on how tight his band sound, but I don’t know enough about Music to comment on that. Boz is there still, so I’m happy. As I listen to World Peace Is None Of Your Business, I am visualising these songs live. Kiss Me A Lot is one I hope he puts into his live shows- at his longing best, this song is glorious. Earth Is The Loneliest Planet has one simple line in it that just means everything, a simple line that holds so much; “But you’re in the wrong skin.”If I heard that line whilst a teenager teetering into adulthood, it would have been a touch easier. As an adult, well..I think it still does the same as it would.

Staircase At The University has the same kind of dark humour that is found in Girlfriend In A Coma. The pressures of a young girl excelling in her studies to which she finally packs it all in, and throws herself down some stairs. Splitting her head in three ways. I love the line, “And if it breaks your heart then don’t come running to me.” You can relate that to anyone, it doesn’t have to be someone who is constantly studying. We all know that one person….

Kick The Bride Down The Aisle is a stroke of genius for this alone; “You’re that stretch of the beach that the tide doesn’t reach. No meaning, no reason . The lonely season.” I can’t help but wonder where he comes up with these wonderful words, and how. And in Mountjoy we’ve got the gorgeous statement; “What those in power do to you reminds us at a glance, how humans hate each others guts. And show it given a chance.” If you want an understanding of how shitty the human race can be, just listen to Mountjoy.

There will be mixed views on this record, some will declare it as his best work to date. Some will yearn for past releases. It is his tenth solo record, you can’t possibly expect him to keep making the same one over and over again! He just excels himself with every record, and he will last longer than those who put him down. You won’t win.

I’ll end this with a section of lyrics that I feel are entirely true, and are a highlight for me. A selection of lyrics that I believe in and treasure. In all his delicate, honest and observant nature, he just says it all so beautifully:

“Slamming one shots, gentle pain
Someone calling out my name
Sex and love are not the same.”

World Peace Is None Of Your Business just reinforces my love, respect and admiration for Morrissey. I could have mentioned this, I could have mentioned that. Maybe I’ll re-read this and add more. But for now, I’ll stick with this being one of the best records of the year.

VIVA MOZ.





THE BEDROOM HOUR-Hinterland.

5 07 2014

tbh

 

 

It’s been a very strange week for me. I went for a job interview on Monday with a charity that are very dear to me, and also a charity I’ve been wanting to work for for some time. I think anyone who’s read anything I’ve written knows that since I graduated from University in 2009 knows that I’ve struggled with finding a job that lasts longer than a few months. I’ve signed on for Job Seekers Allowance more times than I wish to remember, and my fortnightly trips there taught me to never have any self-belief or pride. Going to the job centre made me able to handle rejection and to expect nothing. My luck changed on Tuesday. I didn’t get the job I went for, but they offered me a similar one as I am “too good to not employ.” So now I don’t have to worry about finding a job, and I’m not sure what people use the internet for now! I start in September, and it feels strange. A nice strange. It’s nice to know someone thinks I’m alright enough to do a job you know?

I do know what the internet is for, it’s for finding new music/being sent new music.

Next week a band I love are FINALLY putting out their debut record. The Bedroom Hour have that grand sound in their music that is found in the likes of Elbow. I wouldn’t throw that statement around for just anyone as I really love Elbow and I want Guy Garvey to adopt me.

Hinterland consists of euphoric gems that were created to soothe, to heal and to purify the soul. Hinterland is made up of songs that will at some point make you cry. Cry as you confront whatever it is you’re facing or from sheer joy. Hinterland will tug at your heartstrings in a gentle and reassuring manner, so whatever happens to you as you listen to it- just let it happen. Not everything in life needs to be controlled.

People like certain bands for certain reasons. Maybe something happened, and that band was there for them. Maybe they were searching for something and it led them to that band. Whatever the reasoning is, you cling to that band as a way of holding onto something sentimental. The Bedroom Hour are a sentimental band, they ooze nostalgia for something that hasn’t happened yet. You can drown your sorrows to a sorry-looking pint at your local with The Bedroom Hour playing in the background, you can sort your life out whilst listening to them or you can sit and do nothing with them playing in the background. They aren’t a band you listen to casually, you give them your full attention because for the most part, they are expressing all you would rather not say but must face. I guess if you’re feeling a little lost or confused, then they are the band to turn to. Music is comforting and The Bedroom Hour are a prime example of that.

Hinterland is a beautiful debut record that I sincerely hope they are proud of. It doesn’t matter what obnoxiously jumped up “Music Journalists” say about the record, they’ve got a solid and loyal fan base, and they’ve not released their debut record yet. Every track on Hinterland surpasses the last and has you anxiously waiting for the next one, knowing it is going to be an experience. For me, I’m going to say WW/Me is my favourite track off the record, for now. I will change my mind but now, it’s a solid favourite. It’s got a little Bloc Party feel to it. If Stuart’s voice doesn’t make you cry at least twice on this record, then go see a doctor.

If I was going through my dreadful teenage years again. The Bedroom Hour would be a band I would turn to. A band I would listen to late at night when I should be sleeping. But as a difficult and probably awkward 27-year-old, they just offer reassurance that things work out. Not always in the way you hoped, but they will. In time. Time shouldn’t always be used wisely, but if you want to be sensible, then use your time wisely and listen to The Bedroom Hour.

Music is something to truly believe in, and with bands like The Bedroom Hour it is fairly obvious why.

Hinterland is out 14th July 2014, and if you’re like me and have to face the “ALL STATIONS” route on the Met line, then this record will ease that painful journey. At least it has air-con!