Fair warning: Niche music post ahead. Not for everyone. Sorry.
Let’s get straight into a cameo preamble. Come along if you want to…
I was up late. Football, as usual. But it worked out nicely, because our 13 year old son is away on a Scout course and only got to check his Whatsapps at half past midnight. We got to have a brief chat. He is still alive.
Anyway, I was up and about by 8:30 and running around the house doing jobs and then sat down to write a blog post (this one) and suddenly I somehow I ended up on this Youtube channel, watching this Youtube video:
It’s a metal cover of Dance Monkey – summer’s hot hit from Tones And I – and it’s really good. It’s about 5 minutes long and I enjoyed it a lot. And then it finished and there was a whole playlist of popular songs given the same treatment.
I’m not in London, but if I was in London, I would be going to the 6 Music Festival. Not today, obviously – it doesn’t happen for another six weeks, so I very much doubt that they’d let me in to any of the venues just yet.
Previous 6MFs have not quite done it for me, with a few decent acts (and by ‘decent’, I mean bands or artists that I like – I do realise that this is very subjective) and then a lot of fillers (and by ‘fillers’, I mean bands or artists that I don’t really like – I do realise that this is very subjective).
This time around though (for me, I do reali… oh never mind) they’ve really hit the mark. I’ve been doing some rudimentary calculations, and I could happily listen to at least two-thirds of what’s on offer this time around.
But there’s an awful lot of good music there, and although I’m not in London, I am looking forward to listening to some great stuff from the festival.
I caught the end of this track as I leapt into the shower this morning. New band for me, but I’m always happy to try new stuff, especially musically.
There’s a whole album as well, brilliantly titled Dad’s Old Tapes, which I’m going to have to give a listen to.
Nightlife Blues has become the first track added to my Inspired By 6 Spotify playlist this year. My plan for that in 2020 is to get to several more listeners. There’s no financial reward here, but the chance to make people happy by providing access to carefully curated beautiful music. You can assist by sharing the link.
And in theses times of misguided missiles, political instability and all-round worldwide uncertainty, who wouldn’t want to try to help humanity out in that kind of way?
Spotify has let me know which artists and songs I listened to most this year. I’ve been VERY protective of my algorithm, so it’s delightful to note that neither Ed Sheeran nor Taylor Swift made it anywhere onto any playlist.
My top five were: Death Cab For Cutie, Seafret, Dry The River, New Order and First Aid Kit.
My top genres were: Indie Rock (obvs), Electronica, Britpop, Chamber Psych (eh?) and Rock.
There’s a new album out from the gravelly voiced legend that is… that was… Leonard Cohen, Thanks for the Dance. I was never a huge fan, but I’ve given this one a listen because I was so intrigued by this song, Happens to the Heart. The video – like the song – portrays a movement through life and beyond, and you can sense that this is a genuine story being told.
The extreme postbox video (ruined by the WordPress media player, but particularly good on Theater [sic] Mode on Youtube gives this a real arty feel and weirdly concentrates the mind on what you’re seeing and hearing.
Cohen’s posthumous album came out last month. With these things, as I was saying to a real fan (of Cohen, not of me) earlier today, I always wonder if it was what the the artist would have wanted to have done next (the album, not dying). Also, is there another album’s worth (or more) of unreleased music out there? And if so, would you? Would they? Would Leonard have done?
Perhaps musicians need to have a wholly separate will for their musical wishes. Perhaps Leonard Cohen did.