Alistair Houghton loves the simple life, and on the latest fella makin wavves, finds a song to occupy his mind when very, very bored.
Wavves: So Bored (Young Turks) – Single of the Week
Aggressively DIY, like a cassette tape made by your mate at school, cardboard box drums and fuzzed-up-almost-out-of-existence riffery.
SOTW because of it’s brilliant simplicity and because it’s a great tune to have in your head when you’re, well, bored. B-side How Are You has a touch of a US Badly Drawn Boy-when-he-was-good-in-his-early-days.
Bloc Party: One Month Off (Wichita)
Almost a crunching rocker in Bloc Party terms, driven by a clipped Can’t Explain-meets-Gang of Four riff. They normally seem terribly po-faced, Bloc Party, but this is good even so.
Oh, Westlife-style gear change at the end there, when it was all going so well.
Soft Toy Emergency: I Kno U Want It (Friends Vs)
The sound of youth, by the sound of it, snappy and poppy. It’s either really dated or really ‘now’, I just can’t tell. Catchy as hell, though, could easily soundtrack Skins, which may well be the idea.
Franz Ferdinand: Ulysses (Domino)
I reckon most people’s reaction on hearing about this will be “Franz Ferdinand? Are they still about?” Actually hearing it, disbelief aside, it’s catchily jerky as expected, a little like FF played through a vat of syrup.
Emmy the Great: First Love (Close Harbour)
Inspired by Beckett and Cohen‘s Hallelujah, it’s perhaps not a great as that sounds but a thing of charm nonetheless. It’s all about being seduced to Hallelujah- specifically “the original Leonard Cohen” version, she makes clear. Incidentally, could you imagine a song about being seduced to Alexandra‘s Hallelujah? It could be called Fucked to Shit.
Antony and the Johnsons: Epilepsy is Dancing (Rough Trade)
Stately mournful waltz. Good stuff, but not sure how much it adds to the joy of the world.
Aspen Grove: Dancin’ Alone Again EP (Indispex)
Harmonious indie-pop of varying degrees of jangliness and/or raucosity, with harmonies pitched somewhere between The Coral and The Proclaimers – not a bad place to be.
Brakes: Hey Hey (Fatcat)
Two minutes or so of fizzing riffs and handclaps. Set A Course goes all Scots indie, by way of contrast. And track 2 is just the title – Consumer, Producer, A Chicken or an Egg – bellowed over slammin’ rock guitar. Once. Over in three seconds.
Beyonce: Single Ladies (Put a Ring On It) (RCA)
More so-so handclappy RnB with an unmistakable eau de Hen Party. Released as a single due to overwhelming demand, apparently. Saints preserve us.
See also the video where Ms Knowles and comrades give it some vigorous “booty shaking”, as I believe the youth call it.
You’ve seen this by now, surely? (video Ed)
Attic Lights: I Could Be So Good For You (Universal Island)
A Feeling-esque karaoke run through of the “classic” Denis Waterman Minder theme, to tie in with C5’s Shane Ritchie-starring Minder remake. The very definition of unnecessary. No wait, hang on, the Daily Post dictionary defines unnecessary as “remaking Minder in the first place“.
Coldplay: Life in Technicolor ii (Parlophone)
Annoyingly good video for this, with Punch and Judy-style puppet miniatures of Chris and co going all rawk at the Heswall Village Fete before being flown away by puppet helicopter from the kids’ party they’re meant to be entertaining.
Turn off the volume and play The Who, or something. The Coldplay song? Typically harmless, you’ll know what to expect by now.
U2: Get On Your Boots (Universal-Island)
I grant you, trying to stop the U2megajuggernaut through criticism is like trying to atop an avalanche armed only with boxer shorts and a bicycle pump. But still… seriously, is it just me, or is this a bit rubbish?
Half-arsed riff, lethargic, with something like Beautiful Day or Vertigo you could at least acknowledge there were “technically proficient rock songs” there, but here?
Just an empty hole where a song should be.