As heard

Another 90s classic from 6 Music this morning.

I was hooked from the moment I heard that first guitar chord. Lab work can wait 4 minutes.
And it would be near criminal not to share.

There’s another album that needs revisiting really soon.

Go west?

“Go West! Life is peaceful there!”
So sang the Village People and then so also sang the Pet Shop Boys.

So it must be true.

Trouble is, if you’re in Cape Town and you’re planning to follow that advice, life is going to be rather wet there too. (West being the South Atlantic, for the geographically-challenged.)

That’s why I’m going to turn things around and Go East! this weekend.
Logic suggests that life will be turbulent there, and, should we extrapolate through the rest of the song, that we will be enclosed, alone, there will be rain in the summertime, the skies will be grey and we will do anything except be just fine.

Hmm. East seems a bit crap, to be honest.

Still, the beaglesitter is booked and we’re heading off… East… for a weekend away. Posts here will continue (obviously), and my Instagram is always open for your delectation.

Have yourself a good one. And try not to contract antibiotic-resistant Gonorrhea. (That latter bit of advice applies beyond this weekend, to be honest.)

Monument

No, not the undersung London structure of the same name (although I do have a blog post waiting to be written about that). No. This is a track with the name Monument from Röyksopp’s best album* The Inevitable End.

Teaming up with vocalist Robyn (she looks like a lot of fun, but you wouldn’t mess, hey?), the boys popped out this banger, in which director & cinematographer Stiaan Andersen has basically made me want to attend a Röyksopp gig, right now. And then another one a bit later. And so on.
There’s a lot going on in this monolithic, monochromatic masterpiece, but it’s all underpinned by the strength of that steady, positive lyric.

Wonderous. Turn it up loud. The lab is a good place to be this afternoon.

* don’t @ me

20 years of OK Computer

It’s twenty years to the day since Oxford band Radiohead released OK Computer.

I lived in Oxford back then, and the local HMV on Cornmarket Street opened at midnight for Radiohead fans to buy the album before anyone else in the UK got the chance – no mp3s or downloads back in those days, remember.

And yes, I was looking forward to the release, but wasn’t a HUGE fan, so I wasn’t planning on heading into town. But then, finding myself still awake at the witching hour, thought “why not?”, jumped on a bike and hit the High Street.
I was only just in time. The crowds (such as they were) had gone (it doesn’t take long for 50 people to each buy a CD), and the staff were about to close up, but a friendly guy let me in just before locking the door, and I got my CD and my free poster (woo!).

The album was definitely one of the best releases of the 1990s and has aged really well. And yes, the CD is still somewhere safely boxed up in my loft. The poster never made it out of the damp Cowley Road flat we lived in though, and even the branch of HMV succumbed to the pressures of the modern retail environment and closed in 2014.

Favourite track? I liked all of it, but the slower stuff hit home more for me – No Surprises, Exit Music (For A Film) and of course Karma Policeas mentioned here.

Concierto de Aranjuez

I heard this on BBC 6 Music earlier today and felt it worth sharing.

For all that it’s lovely to listen to and Tara Fitzgerald is (apparently, anyway) lovely to watch, the two don’t go together very well. I mean, we all know that she’s not playing the solo here, but it’s actually horribly obvious that she’s not playing the solo here. Brassed Off surely had a big enough budget to make it a bit less obvious.

However, for all that the scene lacks in believability, it makes up for in the juxtaposition of the young girl playing the fragile solo against the silent yet volatile scenes around the negotiating table as the final nails are hammered into the colliery’s – and with it, the community’s – coffin.

Passion comes in many forms.