Third helping from ‘One-man art-pop prankster’ Alvin Spetz. Alvin Spetz is also the maverick singer-songwiter responsible for two of the most eccentric and original albums of the last 6 or 7 years.
Released under the moniker of Full English Breakfast, his self-titled debut and follow up ‘Candy In Weightlessness’ earned rave reviews from broadsheets to blogs. Now album No.3 ‘The Mixtape of Things’ is ready and Spetz likewise is moving on up through the daily nutritional cycle and this time will be known as ‘That Will Be Lunch’.
Alvin’s new mixtape is full of songs, some only just scraping past 30 seconds, that one moment remind you of children’s TV theme tunes and the next sound like they might be playing in an industrial discotheque from the future. In this unsettling but always playful landscape you’re almost half-expecting the whimsical paen to the snacks marketing division at Waitrose when it arrives in the shape of ‘The Campaign for Plain Nuts’.
Nestled amongst all the strangeness is an inspired cover of Talking Heads classic ‘One in a Lifetime’. Spetz has delved deep into the DNA of this ground-breaking track and extracted what can only be described as ‘previously unseen footage’. Like an inquisitive kid he’s taken the engine apart without a hope in hell of ever putting it back together again in the correct order. But this hasn’t stopped him re-assembling it.
Spetz discovered music while studying at Aberdeen university in the 80s. Inspired by the fledgling indie sounds of Edwyn Collins, The Fall, Josef K and The Pop Group, he embarked on a journey that’s included nascent recordings with members of The Shamen, dabbling with Sufism and the tabloids hounding him as a result, burning everything he’s ever recorded (several times) and playing one gig. Ever. In Belgium.
Andy Summers rose to fame in the early 1980’s as the guitarist of the multi-million record selling rock band - The Police.
The Police were the number one band of the time and dominated the music scene and the media in the 80s with several number one records.
Summers’ innovative guitar playing created a new paradigm for guitarists in this period and has been widely imitated ever since. Prior to the Police, Summers played with various bands in the London scene, including The Animals, Soft Machine, Kevin Coyne and Kevin Ayers. After the band’s dramatic exit from the music scene, Summers continued to develop his interest in photography as well touring, recording as a solo artist, composing for films (including 2010, Down and Out in Beverly Hills, The Wild Life and Weekend at Bernie's), writing books, and exhibiting his photography.
Over the years, Summers has collaborated with many fellow musicians as well as a number of fellow-guitarists, including Robert Fripp, John Etheridge, Victor Biglione, Benjamin Verdery, Roberto Menescal , Fernanda Takai and Rodrigo Santos..
Triboluminescence: Triboluminescence is the follow up recording by Andy Summers to his 2016 release Metal Dog. In this latest release, Summers once again delves into the deep exotic textures which characterized Metal Dog saying that part of his quest is always to find fresh if not alien sounds that avoid all the standard electric guitar clichés.
“We are now living in a world of a billion guitarists “he says “so the struggle to swim upstream, sound different and make original music has become more difficult, but then maybe that is a good challenge. I play for an audience of one – yours truly.
Maybe it’s the music of narcissism-although that’s not how I think of it- but I have to end up with something that I like outside of commercial concerns - but if you in the game these days you face a barrage of likes and dislikes. Everyone is a critic now…”But if Summers takes a position on his music he proves it with the disparate exotic threads and lyricism heard on the tracks of Triboluminescence - generated from non-standard tunings – hammered guitars in tandem, looping , baritone guitar , terz guitar percussion and fretless bass and cello.
Summers plays all instruments on the album apart from cello by Artyom Manukian
Tracklisting: 1. If Anything 2. Triboluminescence 3. Adinkra 4. Elephant Bird 5. Shadyland 6. Haunted Dolls 7. Gigantopithecus 8. Pukul Bunye Bunye 9. Garden Of The Sea
..so Bristolian singer-songwriter Jonny Velon recounts on lead track ‘The White Rabbit’ as an insistent piano riff reminiscent of Ben Folds Five pulls us along and Jonny steps through the looking glass.
Our journey begins..Over the next eight tracks (eleven on the cd) he ventures across a lush earworm-infested terrain trying to make sense of his life and his surroundings in the midst of mental breakdown.
It’s a fascinating ride with any number of different drivers at the controls including ‘Arc of a Diver’- era Steve Winwood, Peter Gabriel, David Bowie (be-suited crooner version) and a largely forgotten 70s songwriter, Murray Head whose 1975 album ‘Say It Ain’t So’ this record could easily be twinned with. In fact we pass through so many countries that you wonder if Michael Palin might be driving.
There’s funky tropical horns all over the place, especially on ‘I Am Always Me’; the transcendental Indian influences of ‘The White City’; a heat haze shimmering intro to ‘Travelling’ that could have fallen straight off the cult film ‘Baraka’ and back in Blighty piano traffic jams rocking ‘The Cambridge Squeeze’.
At every turn there’s another turn as Jonny and an array of talented musicians twist in and out of musical styles, all woven seamlessly into his own autobiographical prog diary.
Imagine a store where both Field Music and Steve Reich might like to shop and there’s a good chance you’ll find Mr Velon trying on a few syncopated rhythms in the changing room. If music is a personal statement, here is his and ten years on from that day in his friend’s room at Cambridge University where life took an unexpected turn he’s now rounded the corner back onto the straight and is clearing all the life fences with ease. Go Jonny go !
Tracklisting: Vinyl: Side A: 1. The White Rabbit 2. I Am Always Me 3. The White City 4. Overwhelming Stillness
Side B: 1. Goodness Flows 2. The Cambridge Squeeze 3. Travelling 4. High As A Kite
Tracklisting CD: 1. The White Rabbit 2. The Cambridge Squeeze 3. I Am Always Me 4. The White City 5. Overwhelming Stillness 6. Goodness Flows 7. Heart & Mind 8. Travelling 9. A Green Lesson 10. High As A Kite 11. Eternal
Silver/Lead is the 15th studio album from musical pioneers Wire. It arrives on the 40th anniversary of their debut performance. Yet it’s about as far from nostalgia as you could get. This is the sound of a uniquely addictive 21st century psychedelic post-punk.
Colin Newman and Matt Simms’ guitar work is alternately jagged and luminous, while bassist Graham Lewis’s ear-catching lyrics are vivid yet oblique. Meanwhile, drummer Robert Grey provides a virtual masterclass in percussive minimalism. But it’s how the various instruments mesh together that really counts. And Newman’s production cre-ates a sonic space in which even the smallest gesture is accorded some recognition.
Highlights include the optimistic dazzle of ‘Diamonds In Cups’, with its almost T. Rex-style buzz and chug, and the moody swing of ‘This Time’. Elsewhere on the musical spectrum, there’s the menacing widescreen grandeur of ‘Playing Harp for the Fishes’ and breakneck-paced guitar pop of ‘Short Ele-vated Period’.
Wire are one of the world’s most ground-breaking bands, their influence acknowledged by bands as diverse as Blur, Sonic Youth, R.E.M. and Savages. But they have never been interested in exploiting past glories. For Wire, there is only ever one possible direction: forwards. So it’s perhaps not surpris-ing that over recent years, they’ve played strings of sold-out shows, achieved career-best record sales, and been cited as a strong influence by yet another generation of bands. Wire’s last three albums garnered nothing but rave reviews.
From 2013’s strangely beautiful Change Becomes Us (“It’s fantastic.” – Pitchfork) to the crackling motorik of 2015’s Wire (“It’s all really well turned, potent and crisp.” – The Guardian), and last year’s punchy mini-album Nocturnal Koreans (“It's a cracker and sounds defiantly modern.” – The Quietus).
Consequently, although it may be being released on the band’s 40th anniversary, Silver/Lead is an album which has nothing to do with the past and everything to do with the future.
Tracklisting: 1. Playing Harp For The Fishes 2. Short Elevated Period 3. Diamonds In Cups 4. Forever & A Day 5. An Alibi 6. Sonic Lens 7. This Time 8. Brio 9. Sleep On The Wing 10. Silver/ Lead
Rebekka Karijord´s sixth studio album, Mother Tongue, was largely written following the traumatic arrival, three months early, of her first baby. Its extraordinary eleven songs track her experience with uncommon honesty and unshrinking courage. Like a collection of short stories, it chronicles the events surrounding her pregnancy and the agony of nearly losing her daughter, but it’s much more than an album about childbirth. Mother Tongue is about instinct, about belonging, and about finding one’s own emotional language.
“I never know what my records are about until they´re almost done,” Rebekka Karijord admits of Mother Tongue’s provenance in a typical, if wry, display of candour. “It´s like a subconscious collecting process, shooting arrows into the dark and then getting out there to see where they have landed. This time, however, it was a bit different…”
The album was recorded in Hawaii, Stockholm & Oslo during 2015 and 2016, and produced, arranged and edited by Karijord with help from Elias Krantz as technician, co-producer and mixer.
Other contributors include Mariam Wallentin (Wildbirds & Peacedrums), Linnea Olsson and Nina Kinert (vocals) Jacob Snavely (bass and electronics), Christopher Cantillo (drums), Joe Williamson (upright bass) and regular contributor Anders Scherp (drums & tuned percussion).
Tracklisting: 1. Morula 2. Waimanalo 3. I Will Follow You Into The Wild 4. The Orbit 5. Your Name 6. Six Careful Hands 7. Home 8. Stones 9. Statistics 10. Mother Tongue 11. Mausoleum