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This Weekend I’ll Mostly Be Listening to… U2 and Ash at The Waterfront Hall May 18th 1998 August 10, 2019

Posted by irishelectionliterature in This Weekend I'll Mostly Be Listening to..., Uncategorized.
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Billy Bragg did a three hour broadcast recently on the BBC included was “Beautiful Day” a documentary (from 1.01 here) on the concert in The Waterfront Hall a few days before the Good Friday Agreement. It was the concert that gave us the famous image of John Hume and David Trimble arms held aloft by Bono. It’s a great listen and brought back memories of the weeks before The Good Friday Agreement Referendum. How the concert was arranged, the people behind it and the assumption too that the concert made a difference.

This Weekend I’ll Mostly Be Listening to…Different Trains – Steve Reich/Kronos Quartet/Pat Methany August 3, 2019

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I was recently in a museum which had an audio-visual installation with footage of train journeys across the United States in the 1940s and 1950s and Different Trains by Steve Reich, as played by the Kronos Quartet as a musical accompaniment – or perhaps the visuals were the accompaniment to the music. The two combined provided a mesmerising experience, it was impossible not to stop and look. Oddly this reminded me of Ulrich Schnauss playing live in Dublin some years ago which used similar footage during the gig, albeit the music was considerable louder and faster.

Of course the pieces are deeply politicised – Reich sought to meditate upon not just his personal experience as noted here where he travelled across the US by train as a child, but also on the death trains in Nazi Germany that took Jews to the concentration camps. And the pieces incorporate quotations from a range of people – survivors, railwaymen from the US and others, which touch on those very topics to a profoundly moving effect.

There are three other pieces in the Electric Counterpoint which are quite different, courtesy of Pat Methany, but no less effective (though to an old Durutti Column fan like myself not unreminiscent of them).

A fantastic achievement.

Different Trains (Part 1)

Different Trains: After The War [Third Movement]

Electric Counterpoint (Fast Movement – Part 3)

This Weekend I’ll Mostly Be Listening to… Billy Bragg July 27, 2019

Posted by irishelectionliterature in This Weekend I'll Mostly Be Listening to..., Uncategorized.
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Am off to see Billy Bragg for three nights in Whelan’s next week as he does his “One Step Forward, Two Steps Back tour” in Dublin. A 50th birthday present to myself. He’s one of those constants in my musical taste and I have a host of LPs, Singles and 12 inches. What he is doing is a really good idea , Monday he will play his current set, Tuesday material from his first three albums (and I presume The “Between The Wars” EP) and on Wednesday material from his fourth, fifth and sixth albums. So for the likes of myself it’s a once off three nights of heaven! … although what state I’ll be in after three late nights jumping around a bit!! Whelan’s is a lovely venue for it too.
I presume too for a touring artist it’s nice to have time to actually stay in a place for a few days and go off and explore, meet up with friends and so on rather than going somewhere and literally just going from the airport to the hotel, to the venue, post gig hostelry, hotel and back off to the airport again.
For someone with such a back catalogue there will always be fan favourites missing from sets so hopefully I’ll get to hear my favourites. Whats nice too is that after much negotiations over who will use the second 3 day ticket, on Monday my wife will go and on Tuesday and Wednesday my son will go along. Since the record player was resurrected in his room last year my son has had various Bragg albums playing away on the turntable. Having seen Billy Bragg live umpteen times (including the night Thatcher resigned!) it’s great that my son will get to see him now too.
It’s probably Tuesday that I’m looking forward to most, “Lifes a Riot with spy versus spy” (I’ve previously done a TWIBMLT for that album) ,“Brewing Up With Billy Bragg” and “Talking with the taxman about poetry” are all really excellent albums.
The Wednesday will feature “William Bloke”, “Workers Playtime” , “Don’t try this at home”. Judging from Reviews (a review of the Bristol leg of the tour) there will be plenty of other material thrown in over the three nights and you’ll have the usual bit of humour, politics and song.
Can’t Wait.

This Weekend I’ll Mostly Be Listening to… Rodrigo Y Gabriella July 13, 2019

Posted by irishelectionliterature in This Weekend I'll Mostly Be Listening to..., Uncategorized.
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A really interesting band that moved to Dublin in 1999 from Mexico. Having been previously been part of a Heavy Metal band they kind of mix metal rifs and Mexican style guitar. Have seen them a number of times live and they are excellent.

This Weekend I’ll Mostly Be Listening to… A House “I Am The Greatest” June 29, 2019

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Off to The National Concert Hall Tonight to see the David Couse, Fergal Bubury and friends show “A House is Dead – I am Still The Greatest” where they will “re-interpret the seminal 1991 album for 2019.
Saw them umpteen times, have all the albums, some singles, 12 inches …… So am really looking forward to this.
“I Am the Greatest” is such a brilliant album. Starting with “I don’t care” and not a poor song in between , ending with “I am the Greatest” and it’s end of “I Am ,I Am, I Am, I Am, I Am, I Am, I Am, I Am, I Am …….” and I can already feel those multiple “I Am” going through the Concert Hall as the show ends.
Twenty Eight years ago and it was a staple on the record player…. indeed another album I had on vinyl that I bought later as a CD, knowing each and every word of every song, the guitar lines… A great album

This Weekend I’ll Mostly Be Listening to…Priests June 22, 2019

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I’ve mentioned before the difficulty in finding new music in an age where there’s so much stuff. It’s not that there’s not new music available, but how to determine what to listen to?

For a long time emusic was a treasure trove in this regard – but in the last year or so it has been losing labels hand over fist. There’s still good stuff there but not much new music appearing, at least nowhere near as much as was evident a few years back. Other options are bandcamp – and albums can be significantly cheaper there. Soundcloud too is useful for working through groups of similar sounding approaches.

Review site are great, but again where to start? Anyhow, oddly enough this crowd I discovered looking up another group on Robert Christgau’s site. I’ve long mentioned my liking of Chrisgau’s reviews – albeit I’ve never liked his, granted, tongue in cheek ‘Dean of American Rock Critics’. Let us be the judge of that Robert. That said he still has an ear for the good stuff.

And here’s a group that fits right into that bill. Priests are from Washington D.C. and their second album, The Seduction of Kansas, is an expansive thing. It’s deeply political – feminist, left-wing (Bodies and Control and Money and Power was the title of one of their EPs). No surprise they run their own label – Sister Polygon Records and do so with an avowedly community and DIY ethos.

From opener Jesus’ Son through to the almost pop like title track and then on to Youtube Sartre and I’m Clean, and that’s just the first four tracks. Other standouts are Good Time Charlie (an excoriating and commanding take-down of mythic aspects of congressman Charlie Wilson) and Texas Instruments.

But it also is just great music. Sharp, witty, angry, and encompassing a range of genres with considerable facility – post-punk (there’s some attention to the incidental sounds that crop up on tracks used on tracks that is very early 1980s), dance and pop. A fraction over-produced perhaps, but that’s a minor complaint given the overall strength of the work. Comparison’s are invidious but there is a similarity approach with EMA (lauded here previously) or in terms of the vocals Cate le Bon. Extremely listenable.

Good Time Charlie

YouTube Sartre

The Seduction of Kansas

I’m Clean

Jesus’ Son

This Weekend I’ll Mostly Be Listening to… Nomeansno June 15, 2019

Posted by irishelectionliterature in This Weekend I'll Mostly Be Listening to..., Uncategorized.
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Found some No Means No on vinyl at home recently, had forgotten I even had it. The particular EP had been bought in a record shop I think on South William Street that stocked a lot of alternative records. It was a great spot for getting punk/Metal the like. Can’t remember it’s name. It may have only been there for a few years.
No Means No were a Canadian band around from 1979 to 2016. Produced 10 albums and countless EPs over the years. They made their final public appearance in late 2015.

This weekend I’ll mostly be listening to… Banned Christy Moore Songs June 1, 2019

Posted by irishelectionliterature in This Weekend I'll Mostly Be Listening to..., Uncategorized.
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Has there been an Irish artist to have ever had so many songs banned by RTE and other radio stations for their outspoken content?
Section 31 of the broadcasting act caused a number of his songs to be banned by RTE. “90 Miles from Dublin” as it expressed support for Republican prisoners. “Mcllhatton” and “Back Home in Derry” were banned too as they had been written by Bobby Sands. “The Time has Come” was banned by RTE as it was written about Bobby Sands. “Section 31” was banned due to it being a critique of Section 31.
“They Never Came Home” his song about the Stardust Tragedy was withdrawn from sale due to a judges findings on the lyrics.
St Brendans Voyage mentioned Gibraltar and due to the murder of the Gibraltar 3 the BBC banned it.
I couldn’t find if songs such as Joe McCann were banned too.

This Weekend I’ll Mostly Be Listening To: Turnpike Troubadours May 25, 2019

Posted by yourcousin in This Weekend I'll Mostly Be Listening to....
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As one would expect when a modern country band has songs about upland bird hunting with pointers (an English pointer, but que sera), I’m loving it.  While there’s certainly nothing wrong with songs about Mama, trains, trucks, prison, and getting drunk. A more insightful lyricist is appreciated, especially now during the reign of pop country. As such these Oklahoma boys are a refreshing drink of water. Won’t bore you with the details. Just listen and enjoy.

 

 

This Weekend I’ll Mostly Be Listening to… An Uncut Compilation CD from May 1999 May 18, 2019

Posted by irishelectionliterature in This Weekend I'll Mostly Be Listening to....
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Found this recently at the bottom of a pile of CD’s. I presume some magazines still give out CDs with them but for a time they were a great way of discovering new music and new artists and indeed confirming that a band wasn’t great at all. Usually there were a few recognisable names on them with bands presumably being pushed by record companies.
This one isn’t too bad, has a number of artists I’d never heard of with the temptation of Primal Scream, Paul Westerberg, Oasis, Tom Waits and Mogwai on it. The Olivia Tremor Control are one group I’ve investigated further.

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