Sunday, 22 April 2007
I recently purchased Lenny Kaye's 'Nuggets' compilation which got reissued a few years ago now. It's basically a collection of some rare, and some not so rare, psychedelic garage rock songs for the years 1965-1968. It's got some excellent tunes on their, with some excellent fuzz box guitar work and Hammond organs. Some of the better known stuff includes things like 'I Had too Much to Dream Last Night' by the Electric Prunes, which is obviously fabulous,'Psychotic Reaction' by Count Five, 'Liar Liar' by The Castaways, and 'You're Gonna Miss Me' by 13th Floor Elevators which are brilliant. But it also has some stuff on there which I hadn't heard before. There are some excellent cover versions. A dirty, garage version of 'Respect' by The Vagrants, which, in my opinion, is probably better than the original Otis Redding version, but I'm not sure anyone is going to beat Aretha's. There is also a wicked version of 'Hey Joe' which has been sped up and rearranged in a 2 and a half minute pop song with fuzzy guitars by The Leaves. I strongly recommend you go out and try and get hold of this, obviously the easiest way is going to be this compilation, but you never know, picking it up on 7" would be bringing sexy back. It is mainly the whole vibe of the compilation that is attractive though. All these bands literally writing tunes in their parent's garage, possibly after school or college, and it coming out with some fantastic rock and roll that is all under 4 minutes long. Concentrated rock and roll. Fantastic. It's this scene that bought us people like The Stooges, the MC5 and many others, and for that, Ladies and Gentlemen, we should be eternally grateful.
Some of the bands here have been really helped by this compilation, albeit about 40 years to late, but still. People like the Electric Prunes wouldn't have been reissued I don't think if it wasn't for this compilation, and I must go out and get some of these bands records, as this is a good taste, but there is more to dig underneath
Meanwhile, Patti Smith has released a covers album, which although initially sounds like a bad thing, it's actually really rather good. Some of the covers, such as 'Gimme Shelter' are a bit standard, but her voice is holding up. It is really the covers that she has changed a bit though that really stand out. There is a fucking blinding version of 'Smells Like Teen Spirit' which is almost unrecognisable. It has got some of her bizarre poetry at the end, is really slowed down, and her voice is fantastic on the whole track. It is worth purchasing for this cover alone. There are also blinding versions of 'Are You Experienced?' and 'White Rabbit' to name a few, so go out and buy that.
I am also currently listening to 'Loveless' by My Bloody Valentine a lot at the moment. 'Only Shallow', 'I Only Said', and 'Come in Alone' are magical. The other thing that is being regularly played is the song 'Staralfur' by Sigur Ros. Now I am going to admit I don't know a great deal about Sigur Ros, so if anyone has any recommendations about where to start etc, that would be nice. I am going to borrow 'Takk...' of a friend, so don't worry about recommending me that one. I have also just found out that The Fall were once offered a recording contract by none other than Tamla Motown. How good is that? Apparently it was the offensive lyrics at the start of 'The Classical' that put them off. Shame.
Also, for some reason I can only get it to come up with lots of options for this weeks T.V Eye, but basically it is the top one that I want people to watch. This tune is brilliant and funny, and it is a cool video. It is definitely in my next DJ set.
Currently listening to 'Hex Enduction Hour' by The Fall