Earworms 2 September 2013


After last week’s exciting 20-plus comments I am feeling a little faint. There’s a starburst of sound for you this week, I hope it brings me round. Warning: Toto is very, very catchy.

Part Chimp – Cover Me – Severin: I bought their first album because my friend and work colleague, Nick, was the bass player. His previous band was called Scarfo since you ask. “It’s not the sort of thing I normally listen to these days” I said. “It’s not the sort of thing I listen to these days” he replied. He left after this album to spend more time working in local government which may have been a bad move. This was by some distance my favourite track of theirs. It sounds nothing like Joan Armatrading or Katzenjammer but it’s kind of catchy.

Cruel Black Dove – Love Song – bethnoir: a bit Polly Jean, maybe, but I keep wanting to listen to this song by the new band from Brooklyn, NY again.

Beck – Pay No Mind – Albahooky: Here’s one from the old happy-go-lucky, as opposed to the current scientology Beck –  “give the finger to the rock ‘n’ roll singer as he dances on your paycheck” I can dig that.

Pink Military – Did You See Her? – beltway: Here’s another gem from my brother’s ongoing project to digitise his extensive collection of obscure Scouse New Wave vinyl, a really catchy bugger this one, the real standout track from an otherwise “so so” album (Do Animals Believe in God). Vocals are by Liverpool legend Jayne Casey of “Big in Japan” fame. I believe this was a regularly played by John Peel back in the day, which I can well believe…

Spearmint – Sweeping The Nation – bishbosh: Probably the greatest hymn to the indie underdog built around a Dobie Gray sample ever recorded.

Toto: Rosanna – Abahachi: Courtesy of German radio’s liking for classic soft rock. I don’t think I’ve heard this since it was originally released (1982?), and some of the synth sounds are definitely dated, but it is damned catchy …

40 thoughts on “Earworms 2 September 2013

  1. How nice to hear Pink Military again ! I had all their stuff but sold it when times were hard.
    I was lucky enough to see Big in Japan BITD and thought they were really good. It was at the old Marquee in Wardour Street and I was standing next to a very weird looking girl while the support were on. She was wearing a kind of purple jumpsuit and had the most oddest of hair styles.
    It was Jayne, of course and she was soon on stage.
    Anyone got the live at Eric’s tape ? I’d love to hear the song “Boyfriend” again. It’s stuck in my mind all these years.

    Of the rest only Part Chimp and Spearmint do anything for me at all and that’s not a lot.

  2. Right, ironing done for the week with a fine set of Earworms to accompany it!

    Great to hear Part Chimp on the Spill, I’ve got this track on their first album (I think I’ve got a 4-way split 10″ with them on it somewhere too…) and love it.

    Toto was ace to hear again too.

    Of the new ones to me Cruel Black Dove was the standout…enjoyed that a lot.

  3. I haven’t listened to Earworms for ages… sorry about that. My loss. Anyway…

    Only one I knew here was Spearmint. I’ve listened to that album a couple of times – must do so again, this is absolutely up my indie street.

    Good Beck is really very good, and this was good Beck.

    I liked the Polly Jeanisms of Cruel Black Dove.

    Part Chimp didn’t really connect on a first listen. Pink Military did. So did Toto, but not in a good way.

  4. Erm . . . Ali? Two thousand and SIXTEEN?

    I mean, I know I had a lie-in this morning ’cause I was shattered, but have I really slept for three years?!?!?!?

    * thinks a while *

    Did Liverpool stay top and bring the league title back ‘home’ yet?

  5. Just listened to this in work whilst finishing a particularly dull report and it livened things up considerably!

    Part Chimp – Very enjoyable stuff, used to listen to loads of stuff like this, not so much these days but this sets the heart thumping again – that is one ferociously mean bass noise, even played on my phone speakers.

    Cruel Black Dove – yes, very PJ Harvey (well, early PJH) but that’s not a bad thing, impressively searching vocal performance, very impressive hi-hat work from the drummer – nice segue from Part Chimp as well.

    Beck – ah, I used to love his downbeat lo-fi stuff, but it doesn’t do much for me these days, but listening again, I can see why it used to be so appealing.

    Pink Military – mine, glad to see it getting some appreciation. Nice playlisting with this Ali!

    Spearmint – I’ve heard this before but can’t for the life of me figure out when (must be RR related?) The snobby git in me wants to moan and say I’d rather just listen to “Out on the Floor” , but actually it’s not bad I suppose though I wouldn’t listen to it repeatedly – can certainly appreciate the sentiments!

    Toto – oof! Haven’t heard this in years but it’s clearly burnt into my brain somewhere as I was immediately able to join in with it – pure Proustian memory effects there, I close my eyes and it’s immediately 1985 and this is coming out of the tinny speakers in my Dad’s old Ford Cortina, bookended by some ghastly local commercials on Radio City 96.7FM – probably the closest thing I’ll get to time travel. Those analogue synths are magnificent, and then the cheesy Fender solo. Overstays its welcome by quite some margin though….

    An interesting and varied selection, thanks for sharing and Ali for curating!

  6. Ali here, back from the future (well, 2016, anyway) – thanks for listening and thanks for all your comments, everybody (disappears in tardis-like contraption trailing a crate of empties and her spare spectacles) …

  7. Part Chimp – Suitably frantic music to listen to the last hour of the football transfer window.

    CBD – Yes, very PJH; no bad thing.

    Beck – Meh. Like a disinterested Micah P. Hinson. Next …

    Pink Military – Uh, ask me again when they arrive from the far end of that mile-long muddy tunnel they appear to be playing in.

    Spearmint – I’ve never really got into this, though I’ve had it for a while (TracyK, take a bow).

    Toto – NoNo. WAY too limp for me to accept as rockers; too earnest (& I was originally too young) for me to accept it as post-ironically-cheesy.

    Ew, that’s a fairly negative reaction there, DsD.
    Post or Delete? Post?? Delete???

    Aw sod it …

  8. I’ve managed to lose several attempts at commenting this time. So to summarize. Quite liked Beck, really liked Cruel Black Dove, loved Pink Military, wasn’t at all sure about Spearmint. Couldn’t enjoy Toto.

  9. Part Chimp: Bit raucous and ramshackle for me. With a bit too much messy feedback/distortion that just sounds like poor production rather than the artistic choice that I’m sure it was. Too long as well – I think music like this should be more short-sharp-shocky.

    Cruel Black Dove: I’ve never liked PJ (not enough warmth in the voice/too stark-sounding, I think), so this isn’t really my thing either.

    Beck: Ah yes, a giant dildo crushing the sun… I know this one! I’ve a mixed relationship with Beck: I gave away the copy of Odelay that an ex gave me (because I didn’t care for it, rather than said ex) but I really like Sea Change. Anyway, this one is sort of OK. Not too wacky – despite aforequoted lyric.

    Pink Military: The one I’ve been looking forward to in the list. As someone, ooh, five years too young (and several hundred miles too southern) to have been there, in the mid-80s I religiously read up on all the Eric’s bands. And of course devouring anything I could get my hands on by ex Crucial Three-ers and their entourages. Yeah, after that build-up… I quite liked it.

    Spearmint: I kind of agree with Beltway: I’d rather listen to Out On The Floor too, but I do love this, for the sentiment if nothing else. And for the (possibly This Is What She’s Like-referencing but probably not) speaky bit. I do love a speaky bit.

    Toto: For the kitsch factor, I think I prefer watching Kilimanjaro rise like Olympus above the Serengeti, but “Rosanna” is undeniably catchy. Just not really even in a guilty pleasure sort of way for me. And by Christ, it goes on… Sorry.

    In fact, apologies more or less all round for my lack of enthusiasm for this week’s haul. I fear I may just have (been) woken up on the wrong side of the bed this morning!

  10. Yay, worms.
    Part Chimp had a lovely fuzzy sound, but the vocals didn’t interest me.
    Cruel Black Dove is mine, very glad people have liked this, compared to their other songs this is very Peej-ish, Anastasia Dimou doesn’t usually sounds quite that derivative, since submitting this I’ve found out that she’s mainly working with a band called Feathers now, incase anyone wants to investigate further.
    Beck well I prefer his livelier numbers I think, but this is okay. Hey Bish, Sea Change is my favourite of his too!
    Pink Military I’ve never heard of them and yet they are right up my street, ace!
    Spearmint Reminds me of Divine Comedy, nice.
    Toto oh goodness, this is an evil little earworm isn’t it? Almost everything I don’t like about rock production in one song, but it’s so catchy (like the plague).

    Excellent selection, thanks for compiling then Ali, in the future, is there a new Sisters of Mercy album?

  11. Amazed at the level of affection for Toto – I was expecting you to turn up on the doorstep as a mob with blazing torches, which is why I was quite glad to be away in Toronto when Ali posted these…

    I can’t now listen to Africa without thinking about the clip at the end of Episode 1 Series 2 of Community, with the great Betty White:

    • It says something about me [that I probably wouldn’t want deciphering] that the first thing that Toto’s Africa brings to mind these days is Blimpy & Run JAMC, rather than sixth-form stereos.

  12. I’ve found that if you type your comment, then “copy” it. Go back to the “home” page and then go back into the page you want to comment on and “paste” then it seems to work !

    • I find it seems to be a problem on pages that you have signed in on – so if you sign in on a particular page, if you leave it and go back to it, you can post without a problem. It’s a ballache though, whatever is causing it.

      • @blimpy, problem is consistent across all OS/browser variants I use, only consistent thing is when posting from a registered account rather than as a guest (such as now)

  13. Blimpy, yeah, I’ve been suffering. Doesn’t tend to fail when posting from my iPhone, but been a royal pain-in-the-arse on Windows 7 Pro via IE.

  14. OKsers – can anyone having comment posting probs, please log out, then log back in using the log in link under the Meta heading in the right sidebar on the front page, and let me know how you get on?

    Cheers. Oh, and the new Pixies EP is thankfully not shit, incase you were wondering how i feel about it. 😉

  15. Had the same issue but kicked in quite a bit later than the start of the new look. Now I write a comment/reply, highlight, cut, refresh the page, open the comment/reply box again and paste then post.

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