The Listening List

Some more things I’ve listened to, without all the covers this time as I will never keep up if I do that every time:

20/04/2017 – 18/06/2017

Sufjan Stevens • Nico Muhly • Bryce Dessner • James McAlister – Planetarium
Slowdive – Pygmalion
Lambchop – Is A Woman
Kraftwerk – The Model
Portishead – Over
Sonic Youth – Daydream Nation
Slowdive – Souvlaki
Björk – Biophilia Remixes | Part Eight
The White Stripes – Under Great White Northern Lights
Forest Swords – Compassion
Delia Derbyshire And Elsa Stansfield – Circle Of Light
Slowdive – Just For A Day

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Nirvana – In Utero
Jonas Reinhardt, Jürgen Müller – The Encyclopedia Of Civilizations Vol. 1: Egypt
Nirvana – Nevermind
Sex Pistols – Never Mind The Bollocks, Here’s The Sex Pistols
Zomby – With Love
Spiritualized – Amazing Grace 3 EPs Box Set
Slowdive – Slowdive
Sonic Youth – Sonic Nurse
Sonic Youth – Murray Street
The Future Sound Of London – Archived
The Smiths – The Queen Is Dead
The Smiths – Meat Is Murder
Mogwai – Rock Action
David Bowie – No Plan EP
The Smiths – The Boy With The Thorn In His Side
Cocteau Twins – Four-Calendar Café
Mew – Visuals
Cozmic Corridors – Cozmic Corridors
Steve Reich – LSO Percussion Ensemble – Sextet | Clapping Music | Music For Pieces Of Wood
Gorillaz – Plastic Beach
Asobi Seksu – Citrus
Gorillaz – Humanz
Atoms For Peace – Before Your Very Eyes.
Björk – Biophilia Remixes | Part Six
The Future Sound Of London – Archived : Environmental : Views
Field Music – Tones Of Town
Bjørn Torske – Nedi Myra
Faust (7) / Ulan Bator – Faust / Ulan Bator
Richard Pinhas, Camera (10) – Camera / Richard Pinhas
Actress – AZD
Cocteau Twins – Milk & Kisses
Mew – Frengers

Record Store Day 2017 (6)

So some things happened, basically around stumbling over RSD 17 releases that I didn’t get on the day and, perhaps in a couple of cases, didn’t know I wanted.

Head records in Leamington had a second shipment after RSD for some reason so there were a couple of things there that were gone on my previous visits but had since turned up again. As a reminder, I had already picked up the following:

Field Music ‎– Tones Of Town
Faust (7), Ulan Bator ‎– Untitled
Richard Pinhas, Camera (10) ‎– Camera / Richard Pinhas
Cocteau Twins ‎– Four-Calendar Café
Cocteau Twins ‎– Milk & Kisses
Mew – Frengers
Future Sound Of London – Archived : Environmental : Views

Then, from the second shipment I picked up:

Asobi Seksu – Citrus
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Steve Reich – LSO Percussion Ensemble ‎– Sextet | Clapping Music | Music For Pieces Of Wood
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The LSO video above is the whole 28 minutes or so of Sextet, because it is an amazing piece of music and, apparently, really hard to play! Performed by Neil Percy, Sam Walton, David Jackson, Antoine Bedewi, Philip Moore & Simon Crawford-Phillips.

Earlier in the week I was on the Cowley Road in Oxford and briefly poped into Truck, who, much to my surprise, had this:

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David Bowie ‎– No Plan EP

So I picked that up and, to my further surprise, they had this 7″ single:

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The Smiths ‎– The Boy With The Thorn In His Side

So that must surely be that for RSD 2017, although there were a couple of Ennio Morricone  soundtracks that I’d like and there’s the soundtrack to Belgica by Soulwax, and Popol Vuh, and the three Spacemen 3 albums of course and possibly Sun Ra & Merzbow and, and, no, that has to be it, has to be, this whole thing is too damn expensive.

Record Store Day 2017 (5)

As I’ve never been up very early on RSD before, usually arriving just before lunch, certainly never queueing, I had never before witnessed the phenomonen of hunting in packs. There were at least three people doing so, shouting across the racks to each other, “There’s a ‘Pineapple Express'”, “Yeah, got it”, and suchlike. It’s a jolly good idea really, as long as you don’t find that more than one of you want something and there is only one left. Perhaps there has to be some bargaining before heading to the till.

I’m pretty sure that there were some people in teams, each with a list, each covering one of the two shops taking part. This is also a good idea, and one I would do myself if I had anybody to do it with. Vinyl buying is a pretty solitary affair for me. Most people I know seem to think it’s all a bit ridiculous, and I can see their point, but most of those people didn’t grow up with it, perhaps don’t understand it’s attraction for me, and probably have a secret Barbie collection or somesuch and have failed to make the connection.

Some of it is nostalgia, there’s little doubt about that, but it is also the physical object. I have several streaming options but what is mine? I have paid for the right to listen to something digital, not something I can hold, or cherish, or enjoy in a more tactile way. I can listen to almost anything I might want to, and do when out and about. Quite often though, I will find something new to listen to and if I find myself starting to like it, I stop listening to it and go and buy a vinyl copy if one is available. That is a bit ridiculous but it makes sense to me.

There’s also music that just isn’t available to stream, such as an album I received a few months ago by ‘Life Garden’, it’s not on Apple Music, Spotify or Amazon Music, I can only listen to it on vinyl, although there are a few tracks on youtube. The thing is, I really like this album and it’s lack of instant availability seems to make me like it more. It has an exlusivity that makes it more appealing and though I would like to send a whatsapp to a friend with a link so they can hear it too, I can’t, there’s nothing to send and for some reason that is a good thing. Same with the RSD release by ‘Future Sound Of London’, I listened to all six sides yesterday but it isn’t available to stream and that does make the listening experience all the better I think.

I do wonder if, like movies, there should be a delay between physical releases and streaming, so an album is physically released and can’t be streamed for 3 months or so. It seems a good idea to me although I know it will still be ripped from CD and distributed one way or another. I can’t be bothered with all that anymore, since the capacities of phones have increased I don’t need to fill an MP3 player up with ripped CD’s or downloads, it’s too much hassle, just download to listen off line, it’s easy.

I’ve managed to listen to a lot of records over the last 3 or 4 days, which is great as I have been having trouble finding the time for the last four months, however, I now have a chair outside by the back door and I can listen to records whilst simultaneously throwing things for the dog to fetch so that he can run excitedly back with them and then refuse to give it back to me to throw again, that’s his thing, he’s very possesive over sticks and balls.

I’ve been critical of RSD before and some of those criticisms are still valid. Record shops are doing pretty well nowadays I think, with RSD having been a big part of their resurgence, but for some of us RSD is pretty much every week but that loyalty and spending isn’t rewarded on RSD itself. I’d like to see some kind of loyalty card, perhaps a phone app, upon which you can rack up points over the year and those points decide where you are in the queue, not just how early you manage to get out of bed once a year. So the initial queue is formed based on the loyalty points and then everybody else queues as normal behind. I’m not saying it’s a perfect system but it could work, as long as it was clear beforhand that it would work that way.

 

MIX TAPE: VOLUME 1 – SIDE 2 – TRACK 1

Side 2, Track 1:

Total Run Time: 2:43

The Smiths: This Charming Man: 2 Minutes 43 Seconds: 1983

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The first time I saw the Smiths was on regional TV, it was a feature on them but was somehow rather tongue in cheek, as in, ‘look at this bunch of weirdos’. With Morrisey and his NHS hearing aid and glasses, waving daffodils around, I can see why, but I liked them straight away. They were different, and I like different.

Audio:

Video:

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