Imperial Drag – Zodiac Sign
Posted on Feb 24th, 2008 by Alan @ 5:22 pm

imperialdrag.jpg

Back to my series of posts on post-Jellyfish projects…

Imperial Drag was formed by Roger Manning straight after the split, alongwith Eric Dover who had performed as second guitarist in their live line-up during the Spilt Milk era. They released only one album, also called Imperial Drag, which is a decent enough record but sadly nothing spectacular. This track is one of the highlights and makes up for some of the shortcomings of that record. Like a lot of the post-Jellyfish output from all of the band members the spark that made Jellyfish so special is missing, and it’s almost like they were trying too hard to stay in that niche.

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Chroma Key – Colorblind
Posted on Feb 20th, 2008 by Alan @ 1:04 pm

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I make no secret of the fact that I like prog. I’m often tempted to deny all knowledge of it as it has such a bad image, based on a very narrow section of the genre which I don’t think is at all representative.

Take Chroma Key for example. Chroma Key is a project by Kevin Moore, who is also one of the main forces behind OSI. I love both of these bands. But he is also one of the founder members of Dream Theater, which are probably more like what people have in mind when you say the word “prog” – and I frickin’ detest them. With a passion. I can’t quite figure out how the same person can be involved in both!

But on reflection this isn’t unique – compare early Genesis to Peter Gabriel’s latest album Up, and unless you’ve followed every step of the path in between them there’s no obvious link in their style. Or compare early Marillion to Fish’s latest solo album.

Anyhow, enough of my gibbering. Listen to this instead:

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Radiohead – Weird Fishes / Arpeggi
Posted on Feb 15th, 2008 by Alan @ 3:25 pm

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So now that the hype has died down, what’s the verdict on In Rainbows? Classic / decent / pish?

My initial enthusiasm about it has died down a bit, but I still think it’s a bloody good album and an improvement on their last few releases though. I don’t often listen to the whole album from start to finish though – but this is a track I never skip.

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Gazpacho – Valerie’s Friend
Posted on Feb 13th, 2008 by Alan @ 1:30 pm

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Gazpacho’s latest album “Night” made it onto a lot of 2007 top ten lists – I didn’t do one of my own but if I had it would have been in contention for a top honour though. Gazpacho deserve all the praise they get, they don’t seem to seek it out though! As far as I can tell they’re largely unknown outside prog circles, and to my ears this is a strange niche for them to find themselves in – they don’t “do widdly” (or as Jem Godfrey would say, they don’t write music with too many notes!) and I imagine they’d appeal to a far broader audience than has ever heard of them.

The link below will take you to Amazon where the album is pretty expensive, although you can often pick up a bargain on their Marketplace. A better option is to hop over to gazpachoworld.com and buy it there for £9.99 or $16.99 – you can also listen to a streamed version of the whole album there if by any chance you’re not already converted to the cause.

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Just Can’t Get You Off My Mind
Posted on Feb 12th, 2008 by Alan @ 11:24 am

depeche-shop-boys.jpg

This one is just for The Wallace – the only fan of gay 80s pop that I know. This track breaks the mould though, it’s an absolute belter.

Thanks to beatmixed.com (DJ Matt Hite) for the track – also check out the “Nine Inch Noels” post from 21st December!!!

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Best Mashups of 2007
Posted on Feb 5th, 2008 by Alan @ 3:17 pm

With thanks to the excellent mashup sites mashuptown.com and bootieusa.com, who both released “Best of 2007” mixtapes, I have immense pleasure in sharing with you my five favourite mashups of last year. I compel you to go and download the whole shootin’ matches because I could have easily have picked a top 20 just from those two sources.

Party Ben – Every Car You Chase (The Police vs Snow Patrol)
I thought the vocals were by Semisonic the first time I heard this, but it turns out it’s Snow Patrol. I’ll have to check them out because I like the sound of this – I’d mentally filed them as unimaginative indie rock, but I guess that was pretty harsh, I’m probably confusing them with someone else. Use the comments field to suggest your choice of unimaginative indie rock that I should avoid.

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DJ Topcat – More Than On Point (House of Pain vs Boston)
This reminds me of Run DMC vs Aerosmith’s “Walk This Way”, with that chunky guitar riff running through it perfectly matched to the rap vocals.

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Divide & Kreate – Illiterate City (Jackson 5 vs Guns ‘n’ Roses)
This is, in equal parts, both brilliant and hilarious. Wee Jacko going totally nutso over the guitar solo is my favourite point in the track.

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A plus D – Standing In The Way Of Connection (The Gossip vs Elastica)
Two very different vocal styles here – Justine Frischmann of Elastica’s laid back approach was perfect for the shoegazing 90s, whereas Beth Ditto of The Gossip could never be described as laid back. Apart from when she’s asleep I guess. I’d happily listen to the original version of either of these tracks, but mashed together they’re even better.

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The Illuminoids – Pretend We’re Alala (L7 vs CSS)
I can’t recall anything by L7 other than “Pretend We’re Dead”, and if their bass player hadn’t got her minge out on The Word that time I probably wouldn’t have paid them much attention in the first place. I could probably do a Google Images search or look on YouTube to check this out, but I’m too lazy so I’ll just shoot from the hip: I reckon that was a merkin.
That said, it was a quality song, and so is this mashup.

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This blog is intended as a way to spread the word about music I really like, and encourage others to support artists who are making great music. "Try before you buy", if you like. If you hear something you like here, go and buy it - I'll post links to online shops where you can buy each track I blog about.

If you're reading this and you are the artist, or their record company, and you don't want a track I've posted to be available to hear in this way just email me and let me know - I will be more than happy to take the file down straight away. I've heard of other bloggers getting threatened with letters from lawyers, and there is absolutely no need to waste your money on that with me!