giovedì 30 giugno 2011

Reef "Replenish"

C'è un motivo sentimentale, diciamo così, per cui odio i Reef.
Ai tempi dell' università avevo una mira precisa, meglio, ne avevo tante, ma una in particolare, la splendida Alessandra. E c'era già stato qualcosa tra me e la signorina, ma tutto era in via di definizione, diciamo così, però intravedevo discrete possibilità.
Un giorno le presentai un mio "amico", meglio, un mio collega di radio a quel tempo, tale Davide, detto nasone, amico di un cretino che veniva chiamato Reef, essendo fan del gruppo.
Ecco, presentai nasone ad Alessandra in totale scioltezza, vai tu a pensare che quel cesso avrebbe avuto speranze.
Ovviamente andò come non mi aspettavo....Alessandra e Nasone si misero insieme. Io a pezzi.
Il gruppo Reef mi ricorda l'amico imbecille di Nasone e quindi di conseguenza mi riporta alla mente quella legnata sentimentale, che ogni tanto brucia ancora a dirvela tutta.
Vabbè...storia di vita vissuta dai.
Gruppo di cui comunque non mi spiego minimamente il successo! (1995 S2)

Emerging as the phenomenon known as Britpop reached its height, Reef's own brand of blues-rock sat out of kilter with the predilection for Madchester and all things Beatles at the time.
Owing more to Led Zeppelin and all things bluesy, the West Country quartet's first album, Replenish, crashed into the musical landscape like a runaway truck. Built around an intense guitar-driven sound and the forty-a-day howl of front man Gary Stringer, the album is as raw as it is anachronistic.
The sheer, untamed blare of riff-based tracks like "Naked" and "Choose To Live" is hard to ignore and even in quieter moments, as on the consummate "Mellow" the metal fanfare is in evidence. Although subsequent albums have seen the band evolve into a tighter and more original outfit, it is here that the adrenaline rush of their roots really lies. (George Lees -

- Feed Me
- Naked
- Good Feeling
- Repulsive
- Mellow
- Together
- Replenish
- Choose to Live
- Comfort
- Loose
- End


Creation Records Compilation "Flowers In The Sky "

Torno, dopo lunga assenza, e cerco di fare un post con qualcosa di veramente gustoso.
Spero di esserci riuscito! (1988 Creation)

There Must Be A Better Life – Biff Bang Pow!
Why Does The Rain – The Loft
Million Tears – The Pastels
All Fall Down – Primal Scream
Think! – The Jasmine Minks
In The Afternoon – The Revolving Paint Dream
I’ll Follow You Down – Slaughter Joe
God Bless – Bodines
Ballad Of The Band – Felt
Up The Hill And Down The Slope – The Loft
Velocity Girl – Primal Scream
Love’s Going Out Of Fashion – Biff Bang Pow!
She’s So Out Of Touch – Slaughter Joe
Waiting For A Change – Phil Wilson
Shine On – House Of Love
Cold Heart – The Jasmine Minks
The Final Resting Of The Ark – Felt
Murderers, The Hope Of Women – Momus
Ten Miles – Paul Wilson
Pool Valley – Blow Up


martedì 28 giugno 2011

Ci sono!!!

Impegni, lavoro e troppi concerti in giro per l'Italia....non sono fuggito dal mio blog, ma purtroppo il tempo è quelo che è, quindi vi chiedo un pò di pazienza.
E io, che credevo che l'estate portasse tranquilità!! Ma neanche per idea.
Comunque fine giugno e luglio non avranno molti post, spero di riprendere un buon ritmo in agosto!
Buon sole intanto dai...

mercoledì 22 giugno 2011

Pullover "This Is The Life"

7" decisamente rappresentativo del sound scintillante dei Pullover. Indie guitar pop targato Fierce Panda. Perchè non siano mai arrivati al disco è uno dei misteri più grandi della storia della musica!
2 pezzi magnifici e trascinanti! (1995 Fierce Panda)

- This Is The Life
- The Great Pretender


Melody Maker "The Sound City Sessions"

Se la giocavano bene a colpi di Compilation il MM e l'NME. Questa volta il defunto giornale musicale aveva piazzato un buon colpo. (1999)

Oasis - Supersonic [Live]
Suede - Savoir Faire
Cast - Compared To You
Garbage - Dumb [Live]
Les Rythmes Digitales - Music Makes You Lose Control
Coldplay - Don't Panic
Reef - End [Live]
Cay - Hooked On That
A - Miles Away
The Boo Radleys- It's Lulu [Live]
Clinic - Magic Boots
Basement Jaxx - Miracles Keep On Playin' [Red Alert Mix]
Guided By Voices - Teenage FBI
Travis - Hazy Shades Of Gold [Live]
Ash - Jack Names The Planets [Live]
Longpigs - Gangsters
Feeder - Bubblehead
Pavement - Billie
Salako - Look Left


domenica 19 giugno 2011

Troublefestival 2011 - La recensione della giornata...

Come sapete, sabato 18 era il gran giorno del live degli Ash. La cornice era il Troublefestival in quel di Monza.
Ecco la mia recensione della giornata per il sito di Radio Popolare Verona.
Buona lettura...


sabato 18 giugno 2011

Ooberman "Running Girl"

Mini album che seguiva l'album d'esordio. Anche qui idee chiare e un gusto melodico che la dice lunga sulla validità del gruppo.
Se non sbaglio, gli ultimi segnali di vita della formazione sono risalenti a 3/4 anni fa in una compilation dove c'erano persino i Midget!!! Pensa te!! (2001 Rotodisc)

That the band who wrote a song that soared to the melodic/poetic heights of their ’98 single ‘Shorley Wall’ face such a struggle these days to even get a release seems to their small army of admirers like a gross injustice. But it’s welcome to the real world for Ooberman, who’s lead singer Dan Popplewell, judging by Running Girl, seems only to have profited artistically from adversity.
The sheer pop ambition which freely permeated debut album The Magic Treehouse has on this mini album receded far into the distance, leaving the albeit charming exuberance it took form of in songs that reached for the stars such as ‘Million Suns’ and ‘Blossoms Falling’ to be replaced by a brooding musical maturity the depth of which is truly astonishing. The transition seems to have been made from surface-pop into a boundless creativity.
There’s a sheer charm and warmth running throughout the nine tracks of Running Girl that sees it glow like an ember in the snow. The subtly vocodered title track flows dulcetly from poetic verse to chorus before taking wholly the form of the latter in a delicately wrought crescendo taken to sensuous heights by the trademark vocals of Sophia Churney.
This is followed by Churney’s own stark serenade to the beginning of winter that is a lesson in understated, effortless effect, ‘Flashing Light at Sunset’ – an intricacy that defies the listener not to breathe with the music. With a skill and tenderness that renders the epic into the suble, ‘We’ll Know When We Get There’ follows the hopes and dreams of a group of drifting settlers in search of the promised land, and from its poignant verse/chorus heights the album veers off in another direction altogether.
The indie audacity of writing a modern, fantasy-infused Russian folk-song would be sufficient for applause in itself without the graceful aplomb and musical deftness with which it is accomplished. ‘Here Come the Ice Wolves’ crackles with the warmth of true expression, setting the whole innovation off like a sparklingly brilliant Catherine Wheel, while the splendid ‘Ghosts’ creeps along beguilingly with a sense of a debased society overcome by a long-neglected, transcendent beauty.
‘Follow the Sun’ is an anthemic reminder of the band’s more “orthodox” past, but ultimately Running Girl is the phenomenal sound of a band stepping out beyond their genre limits. Whatever their commercial future, Running Girl will at least see Ooberman's name lit up in the lights of art. (Neil Jones -

Ooberman finally emerge from their long winter (spring, summer and autumn for that matter) in the studio with nine new songs that compromise the mini-album Running Girl. In the midst of their recent recording, they've been dropped by their record label, set up a new one and changed drummers.
Going through such trials and tribulations would most likely make one more contemplative, this is certainly reflected in the mini-album with a collection more meditative, thought provoking songs. Ooberman continue to use much of the dreamlike imagery they used in their debut album and, while you could accuse them of being twee, they are a band that are firmly rooted on the side poignancy and not irony.
The title track opens with a very folk-ish chord progression and soars when the chorus exclaims, "She doesn't know why that she runs,/But she runs!" 'Flashing Light at Sunset' sees the vocal duties handed over to keyboard player Sophia Churney with her beautiful angelic voice. The lyrics outline the perfect love song to listen to while sitting under the stars.
'Here Come the Ice Wolves' is another standout track that takes the listener through images of a winter night with an uplifting theatrical quality that conjures up thoughts of ballerinas and fake snow falling all around them. Overall, the mini-album shows a band growing up and experimenting with some new sounds.
What the second album will sound like is anyone's guess (band members included quite possibly) but as the third track states, we'll know when we get there. (Jim Healy -

- Running Girl
- Flashing Light At Sunset
- We'll Know When We Get There
- Blink Of An Eye
- Here Come The Ice Wolves
- Ghosts
- The Kitchen Fire
- Follow The Sun
- Alone At Last


Ooberman "The Magic Treehouse"

Bellissimo esordio pr questa formazione. Guitar pop in cui si sprecano i riferimenti. Melodie sempre vincenti, solari ma anche malinconici, creano dipendenza e un senso di benessere! (1999 Independiente)

One of the bigger Brit-pop buzzes of 2000, Ooberman's debut album is a curious, if slightly odd, affair. While most compared the sound to Parklife-era Blur, Ooberman relies much more heavily on bizarre tempos and lyrics, as well as '70s easy listening.
There's a certain quality to these songs that makes them sound as if they would've been easy listening radio staples in the mid-'70s, which is why they sound somewhat jarring amongst today's soundscape. The lyrics are twee, almost too twee at times, as they outdo other twee-poppers such as the Lightning Seeds, and with a few exceptions (the moving "Shorley Wall") the songs are lyrical fluff.
The overuse of strings and middle-of-the-road production don't help much, either. Still, whenever Ooberman stumble across a good hook, it is pretty good, such as parts of "Sugar Bum" and "Million Suns."
It'll be interesting to see how this band develops in the future, but for now The Magic Treehouse is a unique yet flawed debut. (Jason Damas -

'A star in heaven knows my name' is the opening line of Ooberman's debut album The Magic Treehouse and pretty much sets the tone for the album. If you don't mind a little tweeness in your music than you might just like Ooberman.
If you're the more cynical type or you're part of the Slipknot crowd then this album may not be for you.
Ooberman specialise in what might be called hippy punk rock, at least the first half of the album is such with its fast paced tunes about love, travelling, nature and just general nonsense, but fun nonsense nonetheless.
The second half slows down the tempo with melancholic tunes such as ''Roll Me In Cotton' and 'Shorley Wall'.
They may be off in their own little world but it is a beautiful world Ooberman create and it feels like they've only just begun to tell their fantastical stories. (Jim Healy -

- Million Suns
- Blossoms Falling
- Sur La Plage
- Roro Blue
- Tears From A Willow
- Bees
- Sugar Bum
- Roll Me In Cotton
- Physics Disco
- The Magic Treehouse
- Amazing In Bed
- My Baby's Too Tall & Thin
- Shorley Wall
- Silver Planet


Creation Records Compilation "Alive In The Living Room"

Un pezzo di storia targato Creation, la prima pietra posata di questa storica etichetta.
Mamma mia quanto tempo è passato... (1984 Creation Records)

A Day In Heaven - Television Personalities
Seven And Seven Is - Jasmine Minks
I Fall - June Brides
Arrogant Bastards - The Legend!
A.W.O.L. - Three Johns
Your Door Shines Like Gold - The Loft
Hurricane Fighter Plane - The Pastels
Rock 'n' Roll Shoes - Mekons
Sweet Soul Music - The Legend! And His Swinging Soul Sisters
Green Fuz - Jasmine Minks
Lonely Lenny - Alternative T.V.
Three Wishes - Television Personalities


martedì 14 giugno 2011

Chiacchiere (e distintivo) di giugno...

Idee sparse, in disordine e di fretta, perchè è tardi e tra un pò vado a letto.
Sabato 18 vado a Monza a vedere gli Ash. Sarà un bel tuffo nel passato, nel Brit Pop più classico.
L'ultimo lavoro degli Ash, il doppio, è bruttino. Ovvio che ci vado sopratutto per tuffarmi nel mondo fantastico dei pezzi del primo disco...già fremo per quando canterò, fino a perdere la voce, Goldfinger (il mio pezzo preferito degli Ash!).
Si tira spesso in ballo la parola Brit Pop per gente come Vaccines o Brother. In primis vorrei dire che il disco dei Vaccines è stata proprio una bella sorpresa. Il loro rock/pop che flirta col garage è decisamente melodico e con alcuni pezzi che ti si stampano in testa da subito.
Vedremo se i loro "rivali" (per la stampa, ovviamente) Brother sapranno fare di meglio. Per ora una manciata di discreti singoli che profumano di guitar pop, piacevoli e diretti. Fossimo stati ai tempi d'oro chissà Carlo Villa come ne avrebbe parlato. Di sicuro i loro 7" li avrei presi da Supporti e non on line in Uk.
Grande attesa, almeno per me, per il disco degli Heartbreaks. C'è ancora da attendere un bel pò, si parla di ottobre. Però fino adesso non hanno sbagliato nulla con i loro richiami Smiths/Orange Juice in salsa sonica. Nel frattempo tour con Moz e quest'autunno con Hurts, sperando vengano anche in Italia.
Stroncheggiati dalla stampa inglese devo ammettere che a me i Mona non dispiacciono. Certo il loro incrocio tra U2 e Bryan Adams potrebbe risultare indigesto, ma a me questa epicità da stadio piace parecchio!
Non mi pronuncerò sui dischi di Arctic o Kaiser, robaccia che non ascolterò mai e visto che si parla di robaccia vi dirò che il nuovo singolo dei Coldplay è talmente e sfacciatamente brutto che quasi quasi mi piace!
Appena ho tempo il buon Patrick Wolf me lo ascolto con gusto però, quello di talento ne ha da vendere!
Lodi e ancora lodi ai Suede, non tanto per essere tornati in pista dal punto di vista live (stesso pensiero per i Pulp che potevano tranquillamente starsene dov'erano, Jarvis buffone!), quanto per le magnifiche ristampe dei loro dischi.
Mi sono appena ordinato i primi 3 (e mi fermo qui, visto che detesto gli altri album). Beh, che bellezza. Edizioni cartonate magnifiche, fotografie storiche, inediti, b-sides, video e live pazzeschi. Insomma un lavoro curatissimo che ha visto Brett in prima linea! Bravi!!
Chiudo con un pensiero all'italia, con lodi infinite al NANO, Lele Lapiana, che fa un disco bellissimo e struggente, mettendoci dentro tanto, ma tanto, di sè! Spazio ad arrangiamenti molto vari e a tanti ospiti che hanno dato il loro ottimo contributo. Testi come sempre "a vene scoperte"!!
Lasciamo perdere invece i Cani, disco furbo, furbo, furbo...e brutto. E pensare che c'è chi si immedesima in questi testi, ma piuttosto Max Pezzali tutta la vita come cantore di realtà quotidiane. Io almeno mi immedesimavo in gente come Martin Rossiter o Patrick Duff.
Vado a letto dai.

sabato 11 giugno 2011

The Upper Room "Other People's Problems"

Uno di quei dischi che non mi stanco mai di ascoltare. Primo e unico album per gli Upper Room che sfornano melodie solari e un guitar pop da 10 e lode.
Non c'è una canzone ce non entri subito in testa, non c'è un ritornello che non brilli di luce propria. Insomma, un disco bellissimo a mio avviso! (2006 Sony)

Finding some means of musical expression these days can prove to be a will-o-the-wisp experience.
1979 happened in 1979, though just now far too many whippersnapper guitar bands - and some supposedly trendy labels - seem to believe we must do it all again. Similary, the mid-80s electropop sound has lately been recycled beyond pastiche.
Where next does a band go when setting out to create their very own new sound?
If you are London's The Upper Room, you give a cursory glance to your musical history books and deduce that nobody has really got to grips with 1980s pop MOR since... well, the 1980s.
Could it be that here lies a mine of gems merely awaiting exploitation? If their second single Black And White - Lancaster's finest John Waite's Missing You with blander lyrics - suggests they've settled on this course and are plodding along at 55mph towards their goal. So far, so recycled. What chance a Peter Cetera cover for a B-side?
The faux emotion of the quiet verse/anthemic chorus/quiet verse structure and plodding, humourless lyrics offer little recompense for a musical atmosphere devoid of creativity or individuality.
This is music for people who think Heart FM's programming defines music today, who can't wait for the next Embrace album and who don't eat Asian food because "it's a bit too spicey, know what I mean?". This is music for people who don't know why some musical output is worthwhile and some... isn't.
The band is led by singer-songwriter Alex Miller, whose voice isn't half bad. There's a hint of accent about it, a sop to the "keep it real" brigade. But he needs to understand that the titles of songs create expectation.
One track is called Kill Kill Kill. It plods, plods, plods. Portrait, a title last used for a song by Enya, sounds like an attempt to sound like The Cure that doesn't come close to working.
Leave Me Alone is the very definition of bedwetting, quoting a girl with a lot of sense who said: "Please stop calling me at home, Please stop calling me at home, Though I think you're lovely, baby, Won't you please leave me alone." So goes the chorus refrain before (and after) a guitar wank-out middle-eight.
A scan through the lyrics, included in the overtly glossy album sleeve, reveals just about every word to be formed of one or (sometimes) two syllables. One can't even excuse them with the tags "literate" or "sensitive". Mr Miller is no lyricist.
Ultimately the killer here is this. Throughout the album, of 12 songs, there is no variation, no change in tempo, no suggestion of derring-do, nothing to latch on to and hoist up as a special talent. But, astonishingly, they have a major label deal.
Their music purportedly makes one magazine "weak at the knees".
One assumes such a reaction is natural when throwing one's self to the floor and begging any and all gods for mercy from this album's claustrophobic nothingness. Here is stark evidence that, just because a band was formed in London-by-sea (aka Brighton), it doesn't necessarily follow that it's any good.
But on it plods. "She threw a dart right through my shirt to my heart," Miller sings as a verse opening on Black And White. If Bonfire Of The Vanities were being soundtracked today, this song would surely make the cut.
Unfortunately, he lived to warble more nondescript, bloated, tedious rubbish. Better make it a silver bullet next time, love, and check for a pulse afterwards just in case.
There is no conceivable reason to buy this record. There is every reason not to. Next.
(Michael Hubbard -

- All Over This Town
- Black And White
- Leave Me Alone
- Your Body
- Never Come Back
- Kill Kill Kill
- Portrait
- The Centre
- Once For Me
- Girl
- Combination
- It Began On Radio


Melody Maker "The Outsiders - Campfire Songs For The 99 Festival Scene"

Vecchia compilation del Melody Maker che mi piace ripescare vista la resenza di ottimi gruppi! (1999)

Shed Seven - Ocean Pie
Suede - See That Girl
Bis - Am I Loud Enough?
The Cardigans - Losers
Ultrasound - Suckle
Silverchair - Ana's Song (Open Fire)
Everlast - Ends
The Divine Comedy - Thrillseeker
Hepburn - Tomorrow's Girls
Younger Younger 28s - We're Going Out
Ooberman - Serotonin Smile
Dark Star - I Am the Sun (Student Broadcast Network Radio Session 1998)
The Dandy Warhols - Boys Better


mercoledì 8 giugno 2011

Intervista con Moonbabies

I Moonbabies hanno fatto della qualità pop una ragione di vita. Si muovono tra melodie immediate ma anche sperimentazione musicale e i loro dischi profumano aria di grandi idee sonore.
Attendiamo da un pò il quarto disco. Era il momento per fare una bella chiacchierata con loro.
A voi...


lunedì 6 giugno 2011

One Lady Owner "There's Only We"

E allora? Chi se li ricorda questi post punk/glamster che venivano da Manchester? Probabilmente neanche Alan McGee che li mise sotto contratto nel 1998.
Piuttosto monotoni i ragazzi, chitarre riverberate, ritmi marziali, organetto che spunta qua e là e voce oscura. Alla lunga stufano. Venuti dal nulla e tornati, appunto, nel nulla. (1999 Creation)

In the grim pre-history of pop journalism, Cro-Magnon hacks would have it that rock'n'roll was the distilled essence of two things: cars and girls. In our more enlightened times, of course, we know that there's a little bit more to pop than that primitive combination of sex and speed. Well, most of us do anyway.
Honourable exceptions come in the form of Manchester's One Lady Owner, whose debut LP is a parade of scuzzy homilies to hot rods and, with apologies, hot-rodding. In essence, it's a bottom-heavy confection of sludgy guitar riffs and growly vocals which, depending on how charitable you feel, sounds like Joy Division with a 'Nuggets' fixation or Fields Of The Nephilim's 'Dawnrazor' at 78rpm.
But while such retro obsessions can be alluring if done with some panache (Clinic spring to mind), 'There's Only We' is as debased and moronic as it is stultifyingly dull. The singles 'Wheelkings 1973' and the mildly embarrassing 'Police Car Sex' are indistinguishable from the album tracks, though grand finale 'I Do Need You' is not entirely without an edge of menace.
Hence, if One Lady Owner were a car they'd be a 1972 Austin Allegro, and if 'There's Only We' were a girl it'd be your grandmother in a basque. Not a pleasant thought. (

- Weird Dream
- Wheelkings 1973
- I Haven't Been to San Francisco
- Cathode Queen
- Police Car Sex
- MPH Is Everything
- Plantet XXX
- Car Crash
- Trick Chest
- Blue Chrome Zoo
- I Do Need You
- Acceleration
- There's Only We


My Life Story "Joined Up Talking"

Forse meno scintillante ed incisivo rispetto a Golden Mile, questo terzo lavoro del gruppo si ocnferma comuqnue di pregevolissima fattura.
Elegante nelle composizioni e decisamente intrigante all'orecchio.
Probabilmente un pò più di fortuna non avrebbe guastato. (2000 It)

My Life Story's third album confirmed just two things: the first was the sheer brilliance of the band (which we already knew, but it's nice to be sure); and the second, the sheer hopelessness of their situation.
Bad enough, after all, that a string of past singles had already drifted by with nothing better than a number 27 chart placing ("Strumpet" to show for it. But when the exquisite "It's a Girl Thing" followed them into the dumper that is the lowest reaches of the U.K. Top 40, then you knew it was all over. Joined Up Talking is not, song for song, a match to its predecessor, the effervescent Golden Mile, but it can certainly hold its own.
The opening "Empire Line" packs the first of a mini battalion of killer choruses; the succeeding "If You Can't Live Without Me, Why Aren't You Dead Yet?" the latest in a long line of memorable Jake Shillingford song titles; and, up next, "It's a Girl Thing," a song that is essentially an amalgam of every great record the band had made to date, wrapped within a bristling ball of electrifying electro-lushness.
True, it reminds us just how great a debt Shillingford owes to the lyrical likes of Joe Jackson and early Elvis Costello, but there were a lot worse role models around in 2000 -- and most of them were topping the chart. Joined Up Talking will delight anyone who's already been lured into the bruised romantic world of Mornington Crescent and The Golden Mile, and it'll thrill everyone who's ever lost their heart on the bus ride to work, and wishes the incident had been set to music. It has now. (Dave Thompson -

- Empire Line
- If You Can't Live Without MeThen Why Aren't You Dead Yet?
- It's a Girl Thing
- Sunday Tongue
- Yes to Everything
- Walk/Don't Walk
- There's Nothing for Nobody and Everybody Wants to Be Someone
- The New New Yorker
- Neverland
- Stalemate
- Don't Believe in Love
- Two Stars


venerdì 3 giugno 2011

The Star Spangles "Dirty Bomb"

Nuova formazione e parecchi anni dopo l'esordio, potevano essere dei deterrenti per il gruppo e invece eccoli ancora qui, carichi e pimpanti, vogliosi di regalarci piacevoli proiettili rock n roll e noi...beh, ci lasciamo colpire con gusto!
Mr. Tommy Volume anche stavolta aveva fatto centro!
Un gran bel gruppo!! (2007 Tic Records)

- Take Care Of Us
- Tear It To Pieces Girl
- Make Yourself Useful, Babe
- This Side Of The Sun
- Gangland
- I'm On A High
- Gimme An Answer
- Tell Lies
- Nother Weight To Hold Me Down
- Revolver
- I Told A Lie
- Bash Your Brains Out
- Someone In You