the sound(s) of November

November 27, 2008

Blimey, November almost over already…

Live shows this month…. The Notwist @ King Tuts in Glasgow was a show I wondered whether or not to bother going to – would their gorgeous subtleties survive a less forgiving live arena? I was pleasantly surprised – yes, they rocked out, but with a quality sound mix that left every little element audible. Truly lovely.

Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds @ the Corn Exchange in Edinburgh, by contrast, was a total disappointment. Definitely pandering to the poppier end of his repertoire, and the sound and mix were truly appalling- not far short of aural torture, my ears were still ringing the following day. A couple of highlights in Tupelo and Stagger Lee, but I was hoping for a well-rehearsed, loose-limbed avant blues collective and got a slick over-loud rock band and muddy sound from hell. Will never go back to the Corn Exchange – no great loss, since they generally don’t host anything I’m interested in anyway.

Kinda sorry to miss a chicken-in-a-basket triple bill of Human League/ABC/Heaven 17 in Glasgow at the end of the month, but when the alternative is flying off to see the mighty Residents in Stockholm on the European leg of their Bunny Boy tour there was only ever going to be one winner. More on that when I get back.

Shiny shiny discies being pored over this month were….

SAMIA FARAH – The Many Moods Of… – sunny dub-pop mixed by Adrian Sherwood. Effectively chases those approaching-winter blues away.

THE RESIDENTS – Postcards From Patmos – a selection of creepily atmospheric background music from their Bunny Boy YouTube series. Brings winter that little bit closer.

BRAD LANER – Neighbor Singing – BION, probably my fist vinyl purchase in over ten years – and primarily made because the sleeve, inner sleeve and disc labels have all been beautifully designed by Josh Keyes. A key to digital download came with it though – just as well

JOHANN JOHANNSSON – Fordlandia – Well, it’s occasionally a tad syrupy for my taste, but overall some decent explorations.

DAVID THOMAS & TWO PALE BOYS – A Map Only Tells Me What I Already Know – download-only from Live ‘jams’ from a 2001 tour that were intended to form the basis of a new 2PB album, but were shelved when the band moved in a different direction. Keith Moline calls it ‘the great lost 2PB live album’. And he’s not wrong.

And that’s it… a bit of a slack month for new sounds