Swear I'm not Paul: 25/10/2009

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Saturday, October 31, 2009

Album News: Spoon - Transference

Spoon will be releasing their seventh album Transference on January 26th, 2010. It's coming out on Merge in the US, and Anti over here. The band produced the album themselves, and it features recent single 'Got Nuffin'. Anyone going to their New Year's Eve show with Jay Reatard in Milwaukee (none of us here so) can expect the live debuts of a few of these tunes.

01 Before Destruction
02 Is Love Forever?
03 The Mystery Zone
04 Who Makes Your Money
05 Written in Reverse
06 I Saw the Light
07 Trouble Comes Running
08 Goodnight Laura
09 Out Go the Lights
10 Got Nuffin
11 Nobody Gets Me But You

Stream 'Got Nuffin':

Album News: Yeasayer - Odd Blood

Yeasayer will be releasing their new album Odd Blood on the 9th of February 2010. Although it's not 2010 yet, you can download lead single 'Ambling Alp' as a free mp3.

01 The Children
02 Ambling Alp
03 Madder Red
04 I Remember
05 ONE
06 Love Me Girl
07 Rome
08 Strange Reunions
09 Mondegreen


Here's 'O.N.E.' live:

More info:

Preview: X Factor 2009 Live Finals, Week 4

X Factor has just started on TV3 (and ITV). Yes, both channel and show are back. X Factor had been gone six days, but TV3 was down for the best part of an hour earlier. Here's the songs for tonight's live show.


Rachel: One – U2

Stacey: Somewhere Only We Know - Keane

Lucie: Sweet Child O' Mine – Guns 'N Roses

Joe: Don’t Stop Believin' – Journey

Lloyd: I Kissed A Girl – Katy Perry

Danyl: I Don't Want to Miss a Thing - Aerosmith

Jamie: Get Your Rocks Off - Primal Scream

Olly: Come Together – Aerosmith version

John and Edward: We Will Rock You – Five version (From Brits)

Another cliched choice from Jamie. Olly's 'Come Together' could be interesting. Come on John and Edward, bringing the cheese.

Friday, October 30, 2009

Vintage Review: The Tears - Refugees EP

I used to write music reviews for a Canadian website, twowaymonologues, but its archive has disappeared. Thus I'm going to archive some of my own reviews from there under the heading "Vintage Review", so they won't be lost forever. Hope you enjoy these. I'll put them up now and again, whenever the mood takes me.

The Tears – Refugees EP

The Tears - Refugees EP

Originally reviewed: 25th May 2005.

The Tears (rhymes with ‘dear’, not ‘dare’) recently released their first single. Two versions were released, one could buy one or the other, or both packed together as the Refugees EP. So, who are the Tears? It seems they’re “life’s refugees / Like Bonnie and Clyde we’re free / Don’t say there’s nothing between us”. There’s probably no better description for Bernard Butler and Brett Anderson’s new band. Depending on your knowledge of early 90s Britpop, these names may or may not look familiar to you. In 1994, Bernard Butler walked out of Suede, just before the release of their second album, Dog Man Star. That left Anderson running the show on his own, while Butler went off to carve out a career with McAlmont & Butler. In recent press releases, both say they knew that they’d eventually get back together. Most fans never thought it would happen. But now that it has, The Tears debut album Here Come The Tears has become one of the most anticipated British albums of 2005 (almost up there with Coldplay). Thus why I’m reviewing a five track EP…

In the early days, Butler had wanted Suede to be a ‘Smiths for the 90s’. However, this ideal was becoming further and further from the truth, causing him to leave the band. Now that he’s older and wiser, he has a new agenda: "I wanted to make an album that was angrier and more questioning than what I might have done before," Butler says. "There are lots of elements of 21st century life that really put me off, and I find distasteful. ‘Rufugees’ is about the media creation of a new would-be underclass, people who exist through the bottom of society, selling cigarettes on the corner. While underneath we all have the same hopes, needs, fears and sense of family."

So what does it actually sound like? Well, David Bowie actually. Who’d have thought it? One of Britain’s biggest bands of the 90s reuniting in the 00s, but sounding like the 70s. (Actually you can quote me on that, Bernard and Brett – I won’t even demand royalties.) The title track is a great little pop song, and really recaptures the lost days of Suede. With a really catchy bouncy chorus, and an understated melody, this song is the essence of feel-good pop, even if it is a critique of society underneath. If the rest of the album is this good, it really WILL give Coldplay a run for their money.

Second song “Southern Rain” is where the Bowie-influence kicks in. The vocals sound like Bowie, the piano sounds like Bowie. It could have been on Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders from Mars and wouldn’t have seemed out of place. Like its name, the song is quite dreary, but luckily not depressing. It’s a slow piano-led track, a direct contrast to what goes before and after, but doesn’t seem at all out of place. “Feels Like Monday” is more knock back to Suede. Like everything being released these days it has its Robert Smith moments; but for anyone that has listened to Suede, they’ll know that Butler and Anderson were trendsetters years before the trend.

The penultimate song, “Branded” is very similar to “Southern Rain”, but different enough to be interesting. Bernard is once again at work leading the song on piano. It has a really sparse sound, and has some beautiful Bowie lyrics. The last track, “Break Away” again follows the same route. It starts with “And this world is just atoms / spinning slowly / Other people are shadows, lost and lonely / But they're giving us rules to follow / And they're giving us lies to swallow.” It’s probably the angriest of the five songs, and also the best of them.

This is an excellent EP, much like Bloc Party’s one last year in anticipation of their debut album. However there’s one major problem with it – only the title track is on the new album, Here Come The Tears. So if that’s the case, the songs on the album must be better than all of these. If they are, Chris Martin watch your back.

Download these tracks:
All of them, and get the new single ‘Lovers’ which is released soon.

8.0 – An excellent EP, but it’s a bit too much like David Bowie to get a higher mark. But that said, if you like Bowie, you’ll love this! Luckily there’s only two weeks to wait until Here Come The Tears is released!

List: Top 15 One-Hit-Wonders of the 00s

The 00s had less one-hit-wonders than the 90s. Everyone remembers that decade's 'Spaceman' and 'Flat Beat'. For every one-hit-wonder, there are countless career artists honing their craft. But the music charts wouldn't be the same without these fly by night acts. Here I countdown, and remember the top One-Hit-Wonders of the naughties.

This chart is heavily-weighed towards the start of the decade, as some artists who released songs this year may actually go on to do something more. (In some cases, like Agnes' 'Release Me', probably not, but you can't really be sure.) Also, this list is not the best songs. No one-hit-wonder could ever be the best of anything, now could it?

15. "Drops of Jupiter (Tell Me)" - Train (2001)
I know they may have gone on to release a good few more albums (including one this week), but on this side of the Atlantic, the only thing that Train are known for is this song. The song actually won two Grammys, believe it or not. But they've spent the last eight years trying to do it again.

14. "Bad Day" — Daniel Powter (2006)
The man in the bobble hat (it covers a scar apparently) had that one song, with that girl from the OC in the video. Can you name any of Daniel Powter's other songs? Perhaps 'Jimmy Gets High'? Yeah, I doubted it.

13. "I Don't Wanna Know" - Mario Winans featuring Enya & P.Diddy (2004)
This Fugees-sampling song featured our very own Enya, and was set to launch Winans into the stratosphere. Instead he ended up like many other Puff Daddy prodigies, and was relegated to obscurity. Anyone remember Yung Joc or Murphy Lee?

12. "Graduation (Friends Forever)" - Vitamin C (2000)
Vitamin C's Colleen Fitzpatrick may have had friends forever with this overplay ditty, but she definitely did not have a career forever, or any sort of tenure in the pop world. She disappeared without a trace after this song. But is probably living off royalties from Debs/Grad balls and class reunions.

11. "How You Remind Me" - Nickelback (2001)
They may have staged a minor comeback last year, perhaps hopping on the back of Kid Rock's illgotten success, but Nickelback will always be remembered for this one song. It was so "now" (and all they had going for them), that they played it twice at Slane 2001.

10. "Absolutely Everybody" - Vanessa Amorosi (2000)
Released outside of Australia to promote the 2000 Sydney Olympics, 'Absolutely Everybody' seemed to be in the Irish (and UK) charts all summer. She released a Best of compilation in 2006, which I'm guessing has sixteen different mixes of this song, and nothing else.

9. "Wherever You Will Go" - The Calling (2001)
The love song that launched a thousand teenage romances in 2001, and had single girls crying and pining everywhere, 'Wherever You Will Go' was one of the worst travesties of early naughties pop. It's probably one of the worst travesties of pop ever. That and 'Hey There Delilah', which just barely missed this list.

8. "Don't Upset The Rhythm" - Noisettes (2009)
I thought I'd be ballsy and put a song from 2009 on the list. But I feel this one is particularly accurate, as their debut album is filled with absolute rubbish (this included). TV advertisements do make brief careers, and this one is no different. You won't see her again.

7. "Freestyler" - Bomfunk MC's (2000)
Released in 2000 in the UK (and everywhere outside their native Finland), 'Freestlyer' was Bomfunk MC's only success. Similarly, the album it's taken from, In Stereo was also their only success. That's nearly ten years ago now.

6. "Butterfly" - Crazy Town (2001)
With a terrible video, some terrible looking band members, and a terrible chorus, 'Butterfly' by Crazy Town was always destined for success. Or maybe they got lucky. Looking back on it, I'd say it was the latter. Definitely the latter.

5. "Standing In The Way Of Control" - The Gossip (2007)
Whether the remix or the original, this song was everywhere in 2007. The band have not been many places since. Their latest record was a stuttering effort, and I doubt too many labels are in any hurry to release another album from Beth Ditto and co.

4. "Bohemian Like You" - The Dandy Warhols (2000)
The Dandy Warhols have definitely done other things this decade. They have many hardcore fans. But as far as the mainstream goes, this is all they ever had. Once again, a song from a TV advertisement, this is one of the better one-hit-wonders of the decade.

3. "California" - Phantom Planet (2003)
Teen dram The OC helped many bands' careers, but none more so than Phantom Planet. The band that once featured Jason Schwartzman looked set to become succesful like him, but were also shown up to be one-trick-ponies. The band are still going. Somewhere.

2. "Stacy's Mom" - Fountains of Wayne (2003)
Fountains of Wayne have a lot more songs than this. They even have better songs than this. Their live show actually is very entertaining. But to the casual observer, there's only this. It's like the American Pie of music. (The film, not the Don McLean song). With all these new cougar films and TV shows, perhaps it's time for a re-release?

1. "Mad World" - Gary Jules and Michael Andrews (2003)
It may be a cover version of a Tears for Fears song, but Gary Jules's 'Mad World' was the biggest one hit wonder of the 00s. It was also the worst ever Christmas number one. What a depressing song for Christmas. What a depressing song full stop. Even Bob the Builder's number one was better.

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Thursday, October 29, 2009

Interview: Hockey

A great week of interviews for me this week. The first of which was with Benjamin Grubin, the singer from Portland, OR band Hockey. They are having massive success both here and in the US, with their stellar album Mind Chaos, as well as their relentless live tour. They played Dublin's Academy in September and were riotously sucessful.

Here Ben talks about how making a studio album is a little hard work, how they came about their google-hating name, playing the live circuit, and how they've been so warmly embraced on this side of the Atlantic.

Hi Ben. Firstly, why the name Hockey? Love of the sport?
Hi. Well we just wanted a name that was like a mistake. Something you shouldn't use, and so that seemed to work. To be honest it's a little rough now though because it's hard for people to find us on the internet.

What was it like going from making an EP by your own steam to then making one under the eyes of a major label?
Sixty percent of the album that was released on the major was exactly the same album so it wasn't all that different or an atmosphere when we added some stuff on.

I heard it was difficult making the record, how so?
Yeah really hard because I had no idea how to make a reasonable sounding recording and had to figure it out with hardly any equipment. Looking back now I prefer the stuff we did in our basement over the stuff we did after in a real studio.

You seem to have enjoyed a lot of success in the UK and Ireland, why do you think this is?
I don't know music comes in and out of style much faster around there than the US. I think so anyway. So we just happened to be played on the radio awhile ago and that started it all for us.

You've played on the festival circuit, as well as more intimate venues, which do you prefer? And do you find festivals tiring, like many acts do?
Yeah the best shows are the smaller ones where everyone is there to see you, and is sort of already on your side. For new bands festivals are when people stop by to check you out. But that is sort of fun too in it's own way.

You supported Passion Pit at Vicar Street, but have now gone on to headline your own shows, do you ever think they'll return the favour and support you?
I don't know. We're actually playing a few shows with them around the USA in December. But we'll probably play before them. They're HUGE. Really good too.

Speaking of which, who has been your favourite act to support? And favourite who has supported you?
Playing with the Friendly Fires was cool. It made sense, cuz they're crowd could get into our sound. Also picked up a few dance moves... A band called Little Comets opened for us around the UK in September. They were really great. Really good band.

And is there anyone you'd never want to be seen on the same bill as again? Some nu-metal band that brings all the wrong kinds of fan?
Yeah. Cotton Mouth Kings. Opened for them a long time ago, and got in about 10 fights throughout the show.

Have you ever got any really bad reviews that made you want to write a strongly worded letter to the editor?
Not really. People say messed up stuff sometimes. I just don't like it when people aren't straight forward in their Journalism. Like a big publication said we were like Mika, and it's like you don't have to like us, but that's still not true.

Is it hard being on the road all the time?
Yeah it has it's trials. But I like it a lot more than the job I was working before.

The internet has certainly helped you via word of mouth and mp3 posting, are you one of these bands who detest illegal downloading?
No, it's the way of the world now. It's like hating the sky or something else that would be a waist of time.

A lot of artists have remixed your songs, is this something that just happened, or something you encouraged?
It's all been done in England when we haven't been there so I don't even know how those remixes happened really. I should pay more attention.

The cover for the album is unusual, it's made up of four covers, tell me about that.
Jerm the bass player makes that stuff. After he made two options for the cover I thought they were both good, but neither cold stand alone as the cover so I thought he should make two more and we'd use all 4. Works with the album because it's Chaotic and has lot's of different approaches going on in it, and so the 4 panels echo that madness.

Ben wasn't giving too much away about the release of a new record, or what they plan to do next. They just "go with the flow". But I do see massive things in their future. I urge you to go out and buy the album Mind Chaos, and as soon as they come back over here, go and see them. One of the best live bands around today.

Here's the band playing 'Too Fake' on Later...With Jools Holland earlier this year:

Album News: Them Crooked Vultures - Them Crooked Vultures

Them Crooked Vultures will be releasing their self-titled debut album on November 17th this year. That's the day that loads of records are released. Kind of the last day of proper albums before all the compilations hit the shelves for Christmas. In case you haven't heard, Them Crooked Vultures is the new collaboration between Dave Grohl, Josh Homme, and John Paul Jones. It could be, well, MEGA!

1. No One Loves Me & Neither Do I
2. Mind Eraser, No Chaser
3. New Fang
4. Dead End Friends
5. Elephants
6. Scumbag Blues
7. Bandoliers
8. Reptiles
9. Interlude With Ludes
10. Warsaw or The First Breath You Take After You Give Up
11. Caligulove
12. Gunman
13. Spinning In Daffodils

Watch 'Scumbag Blues':

Album News: Paul McCartney - Good Evening New York City

If you got your Macca tickets yesterday for December 20th's O2 show (like me), then you'll be brushing off your Beatles and Wings back catalogues in anticipation. The Dublin show is part of the European leg of the Good Evening tour, and on November 23rd, Sir Paul McCartney will be releasing a Double CD and live DVD of his New York performance. So you kind of get an inkling from the tracklist what he might play. I cannot wait.

Disc 1
“Drive My Car”
“Only Mama Knows”
“Flaming Pie”
“Got to Get You Into My Life”
“Let Me Roll It”
‘The Long and Winding Road”
“My Love”
“Here Today”
“Dance Tonight”
“Calico Skies”
“Mrs. Vandebilt”
“Eleanor Rigby”
“Sing the Changes”
“Band on the Run”

Disc 2
“Back In The USSR”
“I’m Down”
“I’ve Got a Feeling”
“Paperback Writer”
“A Day in the Life”/’Give Peace a Chance”
“Let It Be”
“Live and Let Die”
“Hey Jude”
“Day Tripper”
“Lady Madonna”
“I Saw Her Standing There”
“Helter Skelter”
“Get Back”
“Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band”/”The End”


“Drive My Car”
“Only Mama Knows”
“Flaming Pie”
“Got to Get You Into My Life”
“Let Me Roll It”
“The Long and Winding Road”
“My Love”
“Here Today”
“Dance Tonight”
“Calico Skies”
“Mrs. Vandebilt”
“Eleanor Rigby”
“Sing the Changes”
“Band on the Run”
“Back in the USSR”
“I’m Down”
“I’ve Got a Feeling”
“Paperback Writer”
“A Day in the Life”/”Give Peace a Chance”
“Let It Be”
“Live and Let Die”
“Hey Jude”
“Day Tripper”
“Lady Madonna”
“I Saw Her Standing There”
“Helter Skelter”
“Get Back”
“Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band”/”The End”

Watch 'Let it Be' from the Good Evening tour:

Cancelled: Elton John at the O2

Boo. Elton John is sick, and has thus postponed his O2 show tomorrow night. He was meant to be playing in Dublin on Friday October 30th, but he has the flu.

A press release states:
"He is bitterly disappointed not to playing Dublin, he had picked Dublin to close the Red Piano worldwide, because of the great warmth of the people and the great concerts he had in the city over many years, he is hoping to reschedule the dates in the very near future".

A rescheduled concert will take place in December (hopefully), and tickets for tomorrow night's show will still be valid. Alternatively, you may bring them back to ticketmaster or place of purchase for a full refund.

Here's what you're missing:

Live: Jamie Cullum at the Olympia Theatre

Jazz Hobbit or whatever they call him, Jamie Cullum, will be playing the Olympia Theatre in Dublin on the 9th of May next year (that's a Sunday, to save you checking your calenders!). He'll be promoting his new album, which got 4 stars in both Q and Uncut this month.

Tickets are priced €44.20 including booking fee, and will go on sale tomorrow (Friday the 30th of October) at 9am.

Jamie playing 'What a Difference' live:

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

List: Q Magazine's Top 50 Albums of the Year

Q Magazine's Top 50 Albums of the Year

Q Magazine is always a bit more poppy than the other magazines. Uncut is the one that your Dad can agree with, and NME is a bit more clued in with the Pitchfork hipsters. Q was always a fan of everything. And 2009's Best of albums list is no different.

50. Jarvis Cocker - Further Complications
49. Bob Dylan - Together Through Life
48. Ian Brown - My Way
47. Madness - The Liberty of Norton Folgate
46. Golden Silvers - True Romance

I bet this is the only list this year where you'll see Madness. Comeback of the year? Maybe. It lasted longer than Jacko anyhow. So far, the list is just a case of oldies adding to their already well-rounded back catalogues. Bob Dylan probably appears in this list every year. That Jarvis solo album is damn good though.

45. Conor Oberst and the Mystic Valley Band - Outer South
44. The View - Which Bitch?
43. Tinariwen - Imidiwan: Companions
42. Mariachi El Bronx - Mariachi El Bronx
41. Wild Beasts - Two Dancers

It's here that Q get those eccentric, not for everyone albums out of the way. Tinariwen will appeal to the world music crowd, and Mariachi El Bronx is some cult punk. Conor Oberst's latest is a patchy effort, with some great songs, but I don't really think it's one of the best 50 albums of the year.

40. Cheryl Cole - 3 Words
39. The Horrors - Primary Colours
38. Richard Hawley - Truelove's Gutter
37. Fuck Buttons - Tarot Sport
36. Sonic Youth - The Eternal

Very strange to have Cheryl Cole and Richard Hawley on the same list, never mind Fuck Buttons or Sonic Youth. But thank God Hawley is ahead of Cole, rather than the other way around. I haven't listened to her album yet, but Q is the only (non-Heat/OK/New) publication that has given the album more than three stars. That Hawley album is glorious though.

35. Pearl Jam - Backspacer
34. White Lies - To Lose My Life...
33. Dirty Projectors - Bitte Orca
32. Paolo Nutini - Sunny Side Up
31. Biffy Clyro - Only Revolutions

Dirty Projectors will be really high up the Pitchfork list (have you heard their collaboration with David Byrne 'Knotty Pine'? - fantastic), but Paolo Nutini is a Q only album. It's great if you're into Scottish soul pop. Pearl Jam is as good as most of their catalogue, and Biffy Clyro is a powerful rock album which could very well get plaudits from Pearl Jam fans.

30. La Roux - La Roux
29. Wilco - Wilco (The Album)
28. Bruce Springsteen - Working on a Dream
27. The Dead Weather - Horehound
26. Bat for Lashes - Two Suns

The latter two here will definitely make my list, and Bat for Lashes could well be high on it. Natasha Khan's 'Daniel' is one of the songs of the year, as is 'Cut Like a Buffalo' by Jack White's new band. La Roux is flavour of the year synth-pop, and Wilco's new one is a worthy attempt. Bruce Springsteen shouldn't be on here though, as it's his worst album of the decade.

25. Noah and the Whale - The First Days of Spring
24. Mos Def - The Ecstatic
23. The Prodigy - Invaders Must Die
22. The Low Anthem - Oh My God, Charlie Darwin
21. Jamie T - Kings & Queens

The Low Anthem made the list, but obviously the guys and gals at Q didn't really listen to the new Felice Brothers, as that album does the same thing so much better. Mos Def is a very strange one, it didn't really get much press attention, and I didn't think it was all that fantastic. Jamie T is one for the Brits only, I didn't buy into its schtick.

20. Fever Ray - Fever Ray
19. Monsters of Folk - Monsters of Folk
18. Mika - The Boy Who Knew Too Much
17. Green Day - 21st Century Breakdown
16. Empire of the Sun - Walking on a Dream

This is the we missed the bandwagon the first time. There's no other reason Mika, Monsters of Folk, and Fever Ray would be on here. Mika's new album is terrible in comparison to his last one, Fever Ray's is decent but is most likely here because they hadn't heard of the Knife before Jose Gonzalez, and Monsters of Folk isn't as good as the sum of its parts. Green Day has always been meh for me anyway. Empire of the Sun are a poor man's MGMT. Poor choices.

15. Dizzee Rascal - Tongue N' Cheek
14. Devendra Banhart - What Will We Be
13. Grizzly Bear - Veckatimest
12. Jack Penate - Everything is New
11. Doves - Kingdom of Rust

I haven't heard Devendra's new one yet, so can't comment on that. Grizzly Bear's is excellent in its genre. Doves are finally getting the credit they deserve thanks to Elbow's Mercury Win last year (that said, where's Speech Debelle on this list? It shouldn't be on it, but you'd expect it to be here.) Dizzee is another Mercury winner, and his new album is as good as anything he's done.

10. Phoenix - Wolfgang Amadeus Phoenix
09. U2 - No Line on the Horizon
08. Lily Allen - It's Not Me, It's You
07. Muse - The Resistance
06. Arctic Monkeys - Humbug

The top ten started off so well. That Phoenix album is the best thing they've ever done and has brought them (quite rightly) into the mainstream. However, those U2, Arctic Monkeys, and Muse albums may well be the worst things all three bands have done. Particularly No Line on the Horizon. Lily's is a wonderful pop album though.

5. Manic Street Preachers - Journal for Plague Lovers
4. Animal Collective - Merriweather Post Pavilion
3. Yeah Yeah Yeahs - It's Blitz!
2. Florence and the Machine - Lungs
1. Kasabian - West Rider Pauper Lunatic Asylum

A decent if not phenomenal top five. Manic's new album was a fitting tribute to Richey Edwards. Animal Collective's album has lost impact since it was released at the start of the year - as time goes on, it seems to become more and more average - great album cover though. Of the top three, Yeah Yeah Yeahs is by far the best, but all are good albums. Just good though. Florence is well hyped, but just okay. Kasabian's is their best effort, but not the best album of 2009.

Setlist: Fleetwood Mac - O2, Dublin, 24 October 2009

Photo by HejiraNYC at the Fleetwood Mac Ledge forum. See more of her pics here. I think the set for the second night was similar, with 'Silver Springs' as a second encore.

Monday Morning
The Chain
I Know I'm Not Wrong
Go Insane
Second Hand News
Big Love
Never Going Back Again
Say You Love Me
Gold Dust Woman
Oh Well
I'm So Afraid
Stand Back
Go Your Own Way
World Turning
Don't Stop

Watch 'Dreams':

Album News: Hem - Twelfth Night

Twelfth Night is the new soundtrack album from Hem. While not a proper Hem album, it features all the songs and music from the production of Shakespeare's Twelfth Night performed by Hem and the onstage band at the Public Theater. Music performed by Hem will also include songs sung by the Twelfth Night cast including Anne Hathaway, Audra McDonald, Raul Esparza, John Patrick Walker, and of course, David Pittu. The album includes additional bonus songs, both instrumental and sung, not included in the final stage production.

Track Listing:
1. Illyrian Aire
2. Black Thorn Stick
3. One Self King
4. The Funeral
5. The Rose in the Heather
6. Take, O Take Those Lips Away
7. Take, O Take Those Lips Away (Instrumental)
8. Not Too Fast! Soft, Soft!
9. Full Phathom Five
10. Sebastian and Antonio
11. The Kerry Polka
12. O Mistress Mine
13. Come Away Death (Instrumental)
14. Come Away Death
15. The Clock Upbraids Me
16. The Little Villain
17. To The Gates Of Tartar
18. Illyrian Aire (Orchestral)
19. Where Is Fancy Bred?
20. Enter Sebastian
21. This Is the Air
22. The Bonnie Bunny
23. Hey Robin, Jolly Robin
24. I Am Gone, Sir
25. The Bonnie Bunny (Orchestral)
26. Tempests Are Kind
27. The Wind and the Rain
28. The Wind and the Rain (Reel)

The album is out now.

Live: Paul McCartney O2 Show Sold Out

Bad news Macca fans! Paul McCartney's December 20th Dublin performance is fully sold out. You may be able to find tickets on eBay or the like, but they'll probably cost a fortune. There hasn't been anything relating to a second show announced, but as he's performing back in the UK two days later, it's probably unlikely. However, if there is one announced, I'll let you know.

And to anyone who is going: I'll see you there!

Watch Paul Back in the US from 2002, playing his own 'Live and Let Die':

Stream: Michael Jackson - This Is It (full)

You can stream the entire new Michael Jackson album/soundtrack/compilation from his film This is It, released today worldwide (I'm heading to see it tomorrow). Unfortunately, this is currently available only in North America, but if anyone knows of a stream that works over here, please let me know. Or else use some US IP to access the site!

This Is It Disc One
1. “Wanna Be Startin’ Somethin’”
2. “Jam”
3. “They Don’t Care About Us”
4. “Human Nature”
5. “Smooth Criminal”
6. “The Way You Make Me Feel”
7. “Shake Your Body (Down To The Ground)”
8. “I Just Can’t Stop Loving You”
9. “Thriller”
10. “Beat It”
11. “Black Or White”
12. “Earth Song”
13. “Billie Jean”
14. “Man In The Mirror”
15. “This Is It”
16. “This Is It (Orchestra Version)”

This Is It Disc Two
1. “She’s Out Of My Life (Demo)”
2. “Wanna Be Startin’ Somethin’ (Demo)”
3. “Beat It (Demo)”
4. “Planet Earth (Poem)”

Stream it here:

Watch: The Chapters - Moving

New single from their excellent album Perfect Stranger:

Live: The Swell Season at Vicar Street

Thanks to Peter for not only noticing me on yesterday's 6.01 news (check it out on RTE player, around the 37 minute mark), but for letting me know that the Swell Season are to play Vicar Street on December 15th, just before Christmas.

I'm not sure of ticket details yet, but I'll let you know asap.

Also, other good news is that there's a Deluxe Edition of Strict Joy, with a bonus disc of Glen, Marketa and the band live.

01. All The Way Down (Live) 4:06
02. Lies (Live) 4:26
03. This Low (Live) 5:32
04. Drown Out (Live) 5:44
05. When Your Minds Made Up (Live) 3:32
06. I Have Loved You Wrong (Live) 9:42
07. Falling Slowly (Live) 5:39
08. Leave (Live) 2:59
09. What Happens When The Heart Just Stops (Live) 4:32
10. Lay Me Down (Live) 3:26
11. Once (Live) 4:30
12. If You Want Me (Live) 5:19
13. Broken Hearted Hoover Fixer Sucker Guy (Live) 0:47
14. Fitzcarraldo (Live) 6:12

Monday, October 26, 2009

Review: X Factor 2009 Live Finals Week 3

It was Big Band week this week on X Factor. Always a terrible idea every year, as Big Band is a very niche genre, and people who buy swing records aren't the same people who buy pop singles. That said, Michael Bublé (or Bubble to you and me) was this week's mentor, so you've got to do what you got to do...

First up on Saturday's live show was Olly Murs doing TV theme tune 'Bewitched'. It was a clever song choice with this being Hallowe'en week, and Olly performed his usual cheeky chappy routine. It'd be interesting to see him try something a bit more adventrous. That won't happen next week for Rock Week either. Hmmm.

Lloyd sang Sinatra standard 'Fly Me to the Moon', a very safe choice from Cheryl after the backlash she received last week, when Rikki was voted off. Lloyd has very much reached his peak, and shows no signs of improvement whatsoever. What the backflip was about, I just don't know.

Miss Frank also attempted Sinatra, singing 'That's Life' with a little rap interlude that they do in every single song. They were much improved this week, and their urban Sinatra actually worked far better than expected. No doubt we'll see a future single from them, post X Factor. (The song above is their Singoff tune, 'We Don't Live Here Anymore').

My least favourite Rachel Adedeji sang 'Proud Mary' which is anything but a Big Band song. What next 'Sweet Home Alabama?', well, something else, but we'll get to that in a minute. Rachel should have been kicked off last week, and it's a shame she's there for yet another week. And what was that dance about when she got through?

U2 are a big band, but they're definitely not Big Band. So what was Simon doing picking 'Angel of Harlam' for Jamie 'Afro' Archer? This time I definitely agree with Louis. Terrible song choice, but even still, his attempt at it was awful. Should've been in the bottom two.

Perry Stacey Solomon took on Pinocchio theme 'When You Wish Upon A Star' which was quite fitting. She did a decent attempt on it, but as soon as the song is over, the car crash happens. She should only be allowed to sing, and never talk on the show.

Danyl Johnson took on Muse's version of Nina Simone classic 'Feeling Good' and provided the exact same performance as he has every other week this series (it's season 6 by the way). Luckily the public saved him ahead of Miss Frank, but he's very much a one-trick-pony.

After Sunday's live results show, Joe McElderry has now become the bookies' favourite to win X Factor 2009. He sang Dean Martin's 'Sway' and again did a very credible performance. However, whether Rock Week will suit him or not remains to be seen.

My personal favourite, Lucie Jones sang 'My Funny Valentine' and was very much in femme fatale mode. It was classy and understated, and bound to please any actual big band fans who may have been watching. Still my tip to win it.

Last but not least was John and Edward, the terrible twins from Dublin. Their performance was met with some pantomine boos, but Ricky Martin's 'She Bangs' was given a whole new lease of life by Louis one remaining act.

Michael Bublé was the mentor for this week and sang the Arthur Hamilton standard 'Cry Me a River' (nothing to do with Justin Timberlake's song of the same name) from his most recent album Crazy Love. He's a fantastic singer and gave a wonderful performance.

Westlife were the live guests this week, playing 'What About Now' from their new album Where We Are. The song is a cover of a Daughtry song, who himself was a finalist on American Idol.

The group performance this week was Alphabeat's 'Fascination' which was more fascinating for the costumes rather than the singing. I like the way John and Edward had to do the talkie bit too!

Rock Song Week is next week, with Jon Bon Jovi as mentor, and JLS as (cough) musical guests. Wonder will they keep their shirts on? I really hope they do.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Watch: U2 - Global Live Webcast

Live from the Rosebowl tonight, the first ever global webcast on Youtube. U2.

It's on at 3:30 am Irish time. 8:30 pm local time in Los Angeles.

Watch it here: