Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Return of The Magic Tune Box

It's been quite a while since we delved into the darkest corners of the Magic Tune Box and joined its journey through my diverse music collection.

So, hold on folks, here goes.

1: Projects by Ash (from the album Nu-Clear Sounds): Nirvana-influenced rock from the Belfast boys. I've been a big fan of Ash since I was a teenager, and none of their albums has ever disappointed me. Nu-Clear Sounds moved their sound to a harder, grungier feel, and Projects is a throaty yell backed by Grohl-like drums.

2: Baby Get It On by Ike & Tina Turner (from the Nutbush City Limits box set): Soul-rock stomp featuring a full-bodied duet from the most turbulent couple in pop. Whilst most of Tina's solo career is middle of the road crap, her early work marked her out as one of the greatest singers of her time, infusing Aretha Franklin's soul with a shot of rock spirit.

3: Dolphin '99 by Shed Seven (from the greatest hits album Going For Gold): Shed Seven were amongst Britpop's finest magpies - able to knock out facsimile copies of Oasis, The Stone Roses or The Charlatans depending on the prevailing indie wind of the time. Dolphin '99 attempts to copy the Roses' loping drum beat, combining it with Rick Witter's enthusiastic vocals.

4: Conspicuously Leaving (Without Saying Goodbye) by AC Acoustics (from the album AC Acoustics): Fairly bland, warbling indie tune ideally suited to background music. Never likely to get the pulse racing.

5: Queen Of The Hours by Electric Light Orchestra (from the album First Light Series): ELO have been unfairly maligned in rock's history. Although claims that they were going to be the 1970s' answer to The Beatles may have been wide of the mark, they did at least attempt to inject a bit of creative energy into their songs. As with most of their output, this track incorporates an elaborate string backing, giving an eerie feeling.

6: New Pin by Oceansize (from the album Everyone Into Position): Earnest rock song that simultaneously evokes Nine Inch Nails, Radiohead and Metallica. By no means the highlight of a strong album, but a stirring listen nonetheless.

7: Squealer by AC/DC (from the album Dirty Deeds Done Dirt Cheap): Boasting a false start before typical Angus lead guitar work, this is the sound of the young AC/DC beginning to find their own distinctive sound. Includes a minute-long song section where only Bon Scott and drums are audible, bar the occasional guitar chord. Then, two minutes in, the band begins to rawk. Bon Scott is Scotland's greatest ever frontman - born just down the road from Groanin' Jock in Kirriemuir.

8: People Take Pictures Of Each Other by The Kinks (from the album The Kinks Are The Village Green Preservation Society): Ray Davies is undoutedly one of Britain's greatest songwriters. Having single-handedly invented the punk rock sound on You Really Got Me, he deserted his rock roots for explorations of life in a fast-fading traditional England. People Take Pictures Of Each Other is a typical Davies song of the period, combing 'la-la-la' backing vocals with intricate acoustic guitar work.

9: Oh My God by Kaiser Chiefs (from the album Employment): Whilst I think the Kaiser Chiefs are a great live act and that their debut album contains some great songs, they do occasionally have the feel of a novelty act unexpectedly turned massive. Oh My God is a definite highlight of the album, and as great a festival anthem as has been recorded in the past few years. Deserves kudos for the line: 'But you work in a shirt with your name tag on it, Drifting apart like a plate tectonic'.

10: Switching Off by Elbow (from the album Cast of Thousands): One of the greatest crimes in music today is that Elbow aren't as massive as Radiohead and Muse. As a creatively inventive band, they are matched today only by those bands and by Super Furry Animals. As with most of their output, Switching Off has an almost hymnal quality, led beautifully by Guy Garvey's voice.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Just Scotland?

Bon Scott - world's greatest frontman!