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THE MONDAY LIST #25: A Valentine For You

This blog has been up and running for just over 2 years now and i just realised that i’ve never actually done a proper Valentines Day post. So here is one in the form of a Monday List.

Valentines Day divides a lot of people. Some love it and celebrate it to the full with presents, dinner dates, “quiet” nights at hotels, cards, flowers and the general showering of love on their partner. Then there are those who hate (lets be honest it’s usually single people) Valentines Day and everything about it. Preferring to spend the day moaning about how it’s such a waste of time, money and effort.

Personally, i sit on the fence when it comes to the subject of Valentines Day. Yes, i think the fact that there is a day dedicated to love and showing it is a nice enough idea but i can also see the negative side of it. First there’s the whole commercialised side of it. That can get really tiresome. Hearts, flowers and all things red adorn just about every shop window and passing bus and every page of every paper/magazine. Then some would argue that there shouldn’t have to be a specific day to show your love. If you love someone tell them. Tell them everyday. Tell them at night. Tell them in the morning. Tell them when you hang up. Love and it’s pro’s and cons are a strange thing nowadays, it seems like people would rather tell the world (or more specifically Facebook) about their relationship rather than actually talk to their partner. But i suppose that’s life in the noughties. Maybe i’m just old fashioned.


Like i said though i’m neither here nor there when it comes to Valentines. There have been some Valentines Days i’ve enjoyed and some not so much. I just much prefer it to be a personal thing between two people rather than a day of brownie points and kudos for declaring your love on the 14th of February. But fret not, im not going to get all Ricki Lake and relationship advice-y on you so here’s the music.

A Valentines/Love List
————————–
1. Craig Armstrong – This Love
2. Beach House – Lover Of Mine
3. John Legend and The Roots – Love The Way It Should Be
4. Red Wire Black Wire – Post Apocalyptic Love Song
5. Nice Nice – A Little Love
6. Assassins 88 – True Love
7. Swimmer One – Lovesong
8. Pelle Carlberg – I Love You, You Imbecile
9. Cancel the Astronauts – Love Somebody
10. Arab Strap – Come Round And Love Me

I tried to keep them a bit different from the usual love song stuff and throw in a Scottish acts element. The main thing i aimed for was “uncheesy”, i hope i succeeded.

BONUS STUFF

Dirty Beaches – Valentine

Radiohead/Thom Yorke – True Love Waits

S.I.T Wolf  X

 

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Undercover at Christmas

There are an unbelievable amount of Christmas covers that i could have chosen for this post but i’ve picked out a select few. They’re not necessarily the best ones or my favourite ones though……no, i’m keeping them for my Christmas Mixtape! These ones are some more traditional/classic Christmas songs that have been covered.

MP3: Damien Rice – Happy Christmas (War Is Over)

MP3: David Bowie and Bing Crosby – Little Drummer Boy

MP3: Reverend Horton Heat – Jingle Bells

MP3: Arab Strap – Christmas (Baby Please Come Home)

MP3: My Morning Jacket – Silent Night

I couldn’t end this without posting the always slightly disturbing video of David Bowie and Bing Crosby doing “Little Drummer Boy”. Don’t ask me why but there’s something about it that always freaks me out. It’s not the song itself but the video. The conversation in the build up also makes me uneasy for some reason.

S.I.T Wolf  X

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Weakened Weekend Warriors

Sorry about the lack of posting over the weekend. I was away visiting my friend Keane in Dundee. I hadn’t seen him for what felt like months (in reality it was just over a month) so we spent the whole weekend catching up and going on a massive pub crawl of Dundee. When i arrived on the Friday i was greeted by Keane and his girlfriend at the bus station and then swiftly moved on to the pub then back to Keanes flat where we enjoyed the relaxation of some very smooth joints, a nearby 24 our bakery and some old classics on Spotify. On the Saturday it was just the two of us (his girlfriend was meeting a friend and staying in to watch the X-Factor) so we basically went back to what we used to do in Glasgow when we’re 18 (was that really 7 years ago?). Yep, we revisited our youth and went out to watch the early football game at half 12, played some pool, spent/lost a couple of quid in William Hills, watched all the rest of the football results come in and cursed our luck, had some food, pumped a tenner into the jukebox and simultaneously jived on the spot while propping up the bar until the small hours of the morning and then somehow managed to make a 20 minute walk back to the flat last about 2 hours! The Sunday was spent munching hangover food and then returning to the pub for a curer, a nice cold Kopparberg or two. Then it was a bus journey home for me and my iPod. I left for Dundee early on Friday afternoon and only got home to Glasgow pretty late last night so i’m still a bit tired just now, especially since i have a full week of 12 hour shifts to look forward to in work 😦


Tickety Boo’s was the pub that we frequented the most over the 3 days. It was definitely my favourite haunt of the weekend.

Dundee was a bit of a wild/blurry weekend but one that i enjoyed immensely……..even if my wallet and bank account hate me now. I’ll basically be under a self imposed house arrest until pay day now which isn’t a bad thing i suppose as it means i can get posting on here and download some new music as well. I haven’t downloaded/bought/discovered any new albums in like a week. That’s a long time for me.

MP3: Weekend – Coma Summer

MP3: Arab Strap – The First Big Weekend

On the bus journey home i finally managed to get a chance to listen to an album i got a fortnight or so ago. The album in question is “All We Grow” by S.Carey. Maybe better known as the drummer from Bon Iver to most people but not for long if he keeps providing gems like this wonderful debut.  I can guarantee it’s gonna be in my end of year “Best of” list.

MP3: S.Carey – We Fell


Also, any excuse to get Bon Iver into the post……….

I absolutely adore this track. It was the second ever song i heard by Bon Iver back in late 2007 (after Skinny Love) and it’s always had a special place in my ears. The fact that my late friend Ruari covered it a few years back gives it that extra special emotional link when i listen to it.

MP3:  Bon Iver – Flume

S.I.T Wolf  X

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Conter Fleurette

Last night i found something out about myself. Apparently, i can’t read “i like you” signals. Basically, according to friends i have no idea when a girl is flirting with me. This happened last night in a local bar called the Hillhead Bookclub. I won’t bore you with details but supposedly there was a girl across the room who was “into it”, as Morgan so delicately put it. Morgan then proceeded to explain the rules and moves of flirting and how this girl was using all the same “tricks” as she herself would use when flirting with a guy. So for the remainder of the night i kept an eye on the “into it” girl and still couldn’t see any signs.

MP3: Eagles of Death Metal – I Only Want You

So Morgan and her sister Katie begin to elaborate.

1. M and K: “She’s looking at you all the time, looking you up and down. Suggestively. Oh yes, we mean suggestively”.

MY REPLY:  “Yeah there were a few casual glances but if you’re in a pub you’re gonna catch eyes with lots of different people. I mean i happened to have a 4 second eye lock with the 6 foot 3 hairy barman at one point, doesn’t mean i’m fucking flirting with him does it?!”

2. M and K: “At the bar she stood as close as possible to you. Even though there was plenty room at the other end of the bar she made her way down to your end and stood RIGHT next to you, practically leaning on to you.”

MY REPLY: “Maybe she was just trying to get a look at a certain drink. They keep all the beers at one end and the wines at the other. And all the little fridges are littered with all sorts of different bottles of stuff. She was probably just seeing what they had.”

3. M and K: “She made a point of brushing past you on the way to the toilet just so she could say “oh, sorry”! There was more than enough space for her to get buy, she’s tiny!”

MY REPLY: “Maybe she was drunk (she’d need to be to flirt with me!) and staggered a bit and bumped into me. The poor girl’s probably embarassed about it. And anyway i brushed past the bouncer/doorman earlier. Does that mean that i wanna take him out for a drink and then go see Sex and the City together?! No, didn’t think so.”

4. M and K: “She kept giggling and making eye contact with you whilst talking to her friends. Then she bloody well half waved at you! How obvious can you get?!

MY REPLY: “First off, half waved? What the fuck is a half wave? Is that when you use two fingers? That’s called the V-sign. Seriously though, a lifting and gentle shaking of the hand isn’t a wave. Secondly, the fact that she was giggling to her friends is probably the opposite of flirting, she’s probably mocking me and done the “half wave” as a kind of “i feel sorry for you” gesture.”

5. M and K: “She got her phone out right next to you at the bar,  RIGHT next to you, she was leaning forward so you would see it. That’s a massive hint. IE. She wants you to ask for her number or she wants yours. So obvious! I use that one all the time!”

MY REPLY: “She may have received a tx, phone call or may even have wished to peruse the internet for a suitable cocktail mix ” *I’m getting ridiculous at this point. Had way too many white russians*

So, anyways, the final result was that we left the bar around 11pm without myself or the “into it” girl having uttered a full sentence to each other. A few “oh, sorry”s and “hi”s and a few acknowledging nods of the head was all. Did i miss something? On the way to the taxi rank (we decided to go to the 13th Note) Morgan and Katie  ran over all the above points again and stressed how i had missed out on the opportunity of a date.

MP3: Arab Strap – Don’t Ask Me To Dance

Am i subconsciously not allowing myself to be flirted with for some strange reason? Is it a defence mechanism? Am i scared? Am i holding out for someone? Or am i genuinely not able to realise when a girl is flirting with me? Who knows, i certainly don’t. No wonder i haven’t had a girlfriend in two years.

Here’s a little bonus for Morgan, she goes away to America today. She’s over there for a year doing a teaching course. Basically she’ll be standing in on classes doing nothing! No, of course not. She’ll be doing her coursework whilst doing a part time job of helping out lecturers in a college in Boston, how cool is that?

We put this on the jukebox for Morgan last night…she thought the lyrics were perfect for the situation.

“I Haven’t Been This Scared In A Long Time”

S.I.T Wolf X

ps. You’ll be fine Morgan 🙂

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A Chemikal Romance

Tonight, Chemikal Underground Records celebrates its 15th birthday with a gig at the ABC in Glasgow. Playing at the talent crammed gig are Lord Cut Glass, Emma Pollock, Adrian Crowley, Bill Wells and Aidan Moffat, The Unwinding Hours, Zoey Van Goey and topped off by The Phantom Band. It’d be fair comment to say that i’m pretty devastated that i can’t make the gig tonight but i’ll celebrate Chemikal in my own little way.

Chemikal Underground came about when Scottish indie band The Delgados decided to buck against the trend. Instead of trying to get themselves signed to a label, the Delgados went a different route altogether and started their own label. Giving themselves a platform from which to release their own music and then taking the next step and signing up more artists.

Meet the Delgados, the guys and girl who started it all.

The label is well known throughout Scotland and has given many a Scottish band their first steps in the music industry. Some of it’s more famous artists were/are Aereogramme, Arab Strap, Bis, De Rosa, The Sluts of Trust, The Phantom Band and The Delgados themselves obviously. The latest addition to their roster is The Unwinding Hours, who i’ve posted about previously and am absolutely desperate to catch live (5th of March, not long to wait). Chemikal is also famous for releasing the first two Mogwai albums “Mogwai Young Team” and “Come On Die Young” before Mogwai took a leaf out of The Delgados book and decided to also start their own label Rock Action Records (more on that particular label in the future).

There’s one more thing that people might not know about Chemikal Undergound…..they gave Interpol their big break, gave them a major push into the European market. They spotted the talent in the raw New Yorkers. That’s right, if it wasn’t for Chemikal Underground there very well might have been no Interpol.

Back in 2000, when the label was age 5, it branched out and launched a separate imprint called Fukd ID. The idea behind the imprint was to allow Chemikal to work with and release records by bands that didn’t have to necessarily be signed to the Chemikal label as such. It worked a treat. There’s been 8 Fukd ID releases so far, they’re all very rare and are pretty much all sold out. Interpol appeared with Fukd ID 3 and this was their debut EP. Two of the songs on it (Roland and PDA) were later re-recorded for their debut album, “Turn On The Bright Lights”.

Here’s just a few of many Chemikal delights….

MP3: Zoey Van Goey – We Don’t Have That Kind Of Bread

MP3:  Sluts Of Trust – Piece O’ You

MP3: De Rosa – Camera

MP3: Arab Strap – The First Big Weekend

MP3: Aereogramme – No Really, Everthing’s Fine


VIDEO: Mogwai – Chocky

VIDEO: Bis – Mamelodi Sundown

I couldn’t very well end the post without allowing Sam and Paul to say their piece now could i?

MP3: Interpol – Roland

So after 15 years of introducing us to new bands and giving us some truly inspiring and original music, it’s a big thank you to Glasgow’s very own Chemikal Underground.

oh and Happy Birthday

S.I.T Wolf X

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Ae Fond Kiss

Tonight is Rabbie Burns night here in Scotland. He was born on this day in 1759. There is of course the usual celebrations that take place on his birthday, these celebrations usually consist of haggis, neeps and tatties but i’m going for something more musical tonight. Burns is perhaps most famous for Auld Lang Syne but he also wrote a lot of other wondrous pieces. Among them is my favourite, “Ae Fond Kiss”. It’s an aching ode to a love that’s been lost. I remember studying the work of Burns at school and this was the one that really stood out to me.

The story goes as follows: in 1791 Burn’s one true love Agnes M’Lehose (or “Nancy” to her friends and in the song) decided to end the affair between herself and Robert Burns and make an attempt to save her marriage. She travelled to Jamaica in pursuit of her husband and “Ae Fond Kiss” is the love letter/song/poem that Burns wrote to her when she was on her travels.

So instead of the usual run of the mill celebrations i thought it”d be a nice idea to remember Robert Burns by looking at some more alternative Scottish love songs. None of this Proclaimers nonsense though or stereotypical “Och Aye The Noo” type novelty singers that we seem to have way to much of these days.  No, i’m talking about proper Scottish bands and proper songs of despair and lost love.

But first and as cheesy as it may seem….i need to show this, it’s Eddie Reader singing “Ae Fond Kiss”. (lyrics are below in two forms)

I know some people, well most people in fact, struggle to understand the Scottish dialect and accent and although the song isn’t perfomed here in a broad accent i thought it’d be a good idea to post the lyrics in a more straight forward sense as well as the old script above. I should also point out that Eddi Reader sings the songs in slightly different order from the original lyrics.

A fond kiss and then we sever
A farewell and then for ever.
Deep in heart-wrung tears I’ll pledge thee
Warring sighs and groans I’ll wage thee

Who shall say that fortune grieves him,
While the star of hope she leaves him?
Me, No cheerful twinkle lights me,
Dark despair around benights me.

I’ll never blame my partial fancy,
Nothing could resist my Nancy.
For to see her was to love her,
Love but her, and love for ever.

Had we never loved so kindly,
Had we never loved so blindly,
Had we never met or never parted,
We’d have never been so broken hearted.

Farewell my first and fairest
Farewell my best and dearest
Thine be like joy and treasure,
Peace, enjoyment, love and pleasure

A fond kiss and then we sever
A farewell, alas, for ever
Deep in heart-wrung tears I’ll pledge thee
Warring sighs and groans I’ll wage thee.

A few more old Scottish songs (one from the 80’s and one from the 90’s) about heartbreak…

Arab Strap – Here We Go

Big Country – Come Back To Me

Enough of the oldies though, what does this generation of Scottish music bring us in terms of love that hurts?…….

“You Tear Us Apart With All The Things You Don’t Like”
MP3: Biffy Clyro – Mountains

“Are You Lonely Yet?
MP3: Idlewild – Love Steals Us From Loneliness

VIDEO: There Will Be Fireworks – Midfield Maestro

S.I.T Wolf  X

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