Sm▲ck My Wi†ch Up

January 13, 2011

Bit of bandwagon jumping here, this is a mix of Witch House/Drag stuff. I wanted to keep all the tracks at the speed the artist intended so not much mix here (as usual!).


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I can only apologise for keeping you waiting so long for the next installment of Nearly Comfortable. Volume 5 is a return to a more guitar based selection reflecting my current purchasing habits. Having moved house I now have a new local record shop so where possible I will link through to Banquet records, when Banquet doesn’t stock a title I will carry on linking through to Rough Trade.

As ever press the black arrow on the player to download.

Enjoy!

Cornerstone Church intro
Caecilia: Fennesz (buy)
The Distance: Dntel Feat. Arthur & Yu (buy)
Home: Nick Cave and Warren Ellis (buy)
Here’s A Star: The Silent League (buy)
Share: Cymbals Eat Guitars (buy)
Comets: Fanfarlo (buy)
Home: Edward Sharpe The Magnetic Zeros (buy)
Careful With That Hat: Citay (buy)
Goo Goo Muck: The Cramps (buy)
Raise Up and Fight: Crippled Black Phoenix (buy)

Purchase from amazon

Nearly Comfortable Vol.5 26.03.10 by MickeyTheFish

Hello you,

Well it’s been a few weeks, time for another update to the nearly comfortable series. This time we start of with a bit of electronica (surprise surprise) from The Renegades a track taken from an old Skam compilation that I have been playing for years which then gives way to a track sent to me via this site by the superb T-toe, if you don’t know this chap then head over to his myspazz and put a smile on your ears. Things then get a bit more choppy and fatty boom batty with Subjex and Bitstream, while an old kraked favorite from Wauvenfold and a great track from Lali Puna segway into the folktronica tones of Xela. Things tangent a little with Rain Dogs by Tom Waits which sounds so much like the theme to Black Books that if I were Tom I would be looking for some royalty cheques. This is where things go a little bit downstairs in HMV Oxford Circus with a dash of classic soundtrack and some Womad worthy world music. It is worth noting that I have not messed with the speeds of any of these tracks. Fanfare Ciocarlia really play that fast, it’s the gypsy equivalent of Gabba!

Enjoy!

Asteroid (The Pearl & Dean Theme): Pete Moore
Marvin the Martian
Destination Tomorrow: The Renegades
?: Tom BurbankT-toe remix
Bass Lobe: Bitstream
Funkynightmare: Subjex
Clip: Wauvenfold
It’s Not The Worst I’ve Looked: Lali Puna
Smiles and Bridges: Xela
Rain Dogs: Tom Waits
The Gulag Orkestar: Beirut
The Man With A Harmonica: Ennio Morricone
Horă cu strigături: Fanfare Ciocarlia
Hai Romale: Fanfare Ciocarlia
Yosemite Sam

Don’t forget you can download this compilation by pressing the arrow button to the right of this player

Nearly Comfortable Vol4.1 23.01.10  by  MickeyTheFish

Hello you lovely people, welcome back for the next installment in the Nearly Comfortable series. On this occasion I have wandered further down the path of the almighty God of Rock. In other words I have decided to put some guitary bits and pieces together, as they say verity in the spice of life. If thats the case then i’ll have a spicy bean burger please.

Enjoy

Intro FX
1. Dead Hearts: Dead Man’s Bones
2. Ocean of Noise: Arcade Fire
3. Honey Slide: Adam Gnade & Youthmovies
4. Magique: We Are Wolves
Chavvy Mike – “Cut Your Eye”
5. Eat Flesh: Health
6. You Need Satan More Than He Needs You: Future of the Left
7. The Fucked Jam: Ween
8. Atlas: Battles
9. Less Unless: Civil Civic
10. Armed Response: Trans Am
11. The End of Radio: Shellac

[ Nearly Comfortable Vol.3.3  by  MickeyTheFish

So this is the difficult second album by our friends dan le sac Vs. Scroobius Pip, not so – it’s a gem. For those of you that have seen them live recently you would already have been introduced to two of their new tracks ‘Great Britain’ and ‘The Beat’. Remember, they were the ones that had you jumping about like you were 16 again or maybe are you are 16 and jumping around at gigs is still par for the course. This album has all the elements that make lesacVsPip so lovable: Pips rhymes are as on it as ever and still coated nicely in his trademark Essex twang, it has their mix of hip-hop, choppy electronica, dance floor bombs, heart-swelling anthems, witty social commentary and poppy goodness (now that’s not something I say very often). It’s this heady combination of genres that make these guys so difficult to pigeonhole.

In my opinion ‘The Logic of Chance’ comes in a much improved, more accomplished package, Mr le sac has been busy in his sonic laboratory and pulled all the stops out, the production on this record is first class, tracks sound bigger, better, rounder. There also other production elements that make me happy, little things like messing about with the police sirens at the end of ‘Last Train Home’ and building them into the intro of ‘Snob’. Things like that are important to a geek like me and I think show a form of respect for the album as a format, something the digital age runs the risk of losing (yeah alright, shut up granddad I hear you call).

The highlights on the album generally fluctuate depending on what mood I’m in and what I feel like listening to. Today they are ‘Great Britain’, ‘Cowboi’ and ‘Get Better’ other days ‘Snob’, ‘Last Train Home’, ‘The Beat’ and ‘Cauliflower’ vie for the top 3. ‘Great Britain’ sees Pip explore his love/hate relationship with this island home of ours. Diversity and music = good, knife crime = not so good. Obviously I am paraphrasing somewhat. The track kicks and thumps and is catchy as hell right from the opening synth hook. Another plus is that halfway through Pip’s vocals get all shouty and personally, I think his vocals sound best when he sounds a bit narked.

‘Imagine a song that really reached out and touched kids and not in a Daily Mail way’. What a way to start a track. ‘Get Better’ (in the player below along with a very special remix from the Errors) will be the first single from this album and to be honest I wasn’t overly keen when I first heard it. But this is all quite normal for me with lesacVsPips work, there are always the odd tracks that trip my ‘oh no thats a bit poppy for me’ alarm, on ‘Angles’ it was ‘Look For The Woman’ and like ‘Look For The Woman’, ‘Get Better’ has grown on me like a well trimmed beard. It’s a very skillfully crafted tune with a strong inspirational message for da kids about their proclivity to breed.

Get Better (7″)  by  lesacvspip

Released 1st March
Pre-order here

And finally we come to todays favorite track from the album ‘Cowboi’ which features the vocal talents of one-time label mate Kid Carpet. The track is both fantastic and horrific, on one hand the strings and beats are rousing and the chorus is beautifully sung. On the other, it is a story about a women who nearly gets raped in an alley. I love the dialect, with Kid Carpet’s Bristolian lilt in the chorus and the way Pip’s Essex accent makes ‘killed’ ‘kiwed’. It’s not the Queen’s but very homegrown, very British . . .. ‘Great Britain’ indeed.

These guys are known for their live shows, (they managed to fill a tent going head to head with Rage Against the Machine at Reading for God’s sake) and I can promise you that their next set of tours are going to be something you do not want to miss, you can just tell that the ‘The Beat’ is going to blow speaker stacks and ‘Cowboi’ will become another sing-along anthem that will be rolling around people’s heads weeks after the show, I do hope they bring Kid Carpet on tour with them.

NB: This review is a little inaccurate as it has taken a while to write (I got distracted by the darts, a couple of amazing semi finals at Lakeside – come on Woolfie) todays favorite tune is actually ‘The Beat’ but I’ll be buggered if I am going to re-write it all now.

Released 8th March
Pre-order today

Enjoy

Silly and Fun

January 9, 2010

This is a blog a chap’s wife has written where she logs some of the things he says in his sleep.

Some examples

“So many spoons. You can’t have any. Cock off!”

“Don’t… Don’t put the noodles and the dumplings together in the boat. They’ll fight! The noodles are bullies. Poor dumplings.”

“I’ve got a badger, a dog, a cat, and a sack. Now that I’ve got ’em you can fuck off.”

“Don’t eat the jelly! Don’t eat the jelly! I made it with frog wee. It’ll turn your teeth green… Like mini apples.”

I hope you enjoy this next installment in the Nearly Comfortable series. Vol. 2 is a little different to Vol.1 – spliced between the music we are joined by rationalist extraordinaire Richard Dawkins and have a thunderstorm starting a few tracks in, which sits in the background through the rest of the the compilation. You can download this comp by pressing the arrow at the right of the player.

Enjoy.

1. Intro: Mickey’s noise
2. Steve Paulson and Richard Dawkins interview p1 (KRAKED up by Mickey the Fish)
3. M 05: Alva Noto
4. We Love You Michael Gira: Ben Frost
5. Severe Thunderstorm (continues through out)
6. The Snow Hill: Scorn
7. Sound FX
8. Steve Paulson and Richard Dawkins interview p2 (KRAKED up by Mickey the Fish)
+ Mickey’s noise
9. BearcaN: Metronomy
10. Son & Moon: Cortney Tidwell
11. Red Shred: Kettle
12. Hajnal: Venetian Snares
13. Steve Paulson and Richard Dawkins interview p3 (KRAKED up by Mickey the Fish) + Mickey’s noise
14. Plaything: Plone
15. The Rip: Portishead
16. Husks and Shells: Volcano Choir
17. We Share Our Blanket With The Owl: Brightblack Morning Light
18. Snow Goddess: Sleep Sun
Just enjoy the thunderstorm for a bit there is more coming.
Ah birdies, I like Birdies
Mickey’s silly Dawkins cut up
Some more thunder
19. 38965__Argitoth__archi_soundscape_horror2: ?
20. Rust on Metal: Cloaks
21. Barry Dub 2007: Milanese
Gap
Mickey’s silly Dawkins cut up

Nearly Comfortable Vol.2  by  MickeyTheFish

Album of the Year: 2009

January 4, 2010

As this is the first review of the new year (and first I have written in years) I thought it appropriate to review my top album of last year: Dead Man’s Bones (Featuring the Silverlake Conservatory of Music Children’s Choir): Dead Man’s Bones (available at Rough Trade with exclusive bonus DVD)

Dead Man’s Bones is one of those albums where the front cover intrigued me so much I just bought it. This is something I did quite often as a young’un back in the days before the internet made buying music so easy. To be honest this tactic did not pay off very often and as such there are many records in my collection condemned to the fate of being unwrapped, listened to once, filed and then forgotten about until I move house. This album makes all those wasted pounds worth it.

If I had read anything about this album before I saw it winking at me from the record shop’s shelf I probably would not have picked it up. It is a concept album (hmm), based on the supernatural (hmmm), with a gothic theme (hmmmm), features a childrens choir (hmmmmm), is a collaboration between two actors (hmmmmmm) and was going to be a stage musical (and that’s enough, I’m off). Thank goodness for my ignorance.

The album is a collaboration between Zach Shields and Ryan Gosling (yes that Ryan Gosling, the one who plays the smacked up teacher in Half Nelson) born from their shared, unhealthy obsession with the supernatural. In fact Zach was so obsessed with ghosts as a kid he was put into therapy. The album handles its themes of death, ghosts, graveyards, werewolves and zombies surprisingly well, it’s gothic but not goth and manages to be genuinely eerie without being cheesy: kids singing about being Zombies has more than a bit of the Omen about it. The experience that Zach and Ryan have had as actors is well reflected in the music, it is all very cinematic – conjuring up visions of old-fashioned horror films and atmospheric sounds are interspersed as if they have their own foley department working on the rain, creaking doors, thunder, foot steps, screaming, crying and werewolf howling FX used. Although this is not the case because the duo played everything on the album (including instruments they had never used before) as part of a set of rules for making the album that resemble Lars von Trier’s Dogme 95 vow of chastity other rules included banning click tracks and electric guitars and only ever recording three takes of a track no matter how bad the outcome.

I get the impression that they recorded everything they played as lots of mistakes and hiccups have been captured and weaved into the tracks giving the album a great ramshackle quality which is incredibly charming. Zach and Ryan’s vocals will not win any Saturday night TV shows and the choir is not be best you will ever hear but it all comes together perfectly . My Body’s A Zombie For You (in the player below) is perfect example, the song sounds like a track from a schools Halloween performance the kids choir pretty much shout the refrain and at it’s end the song descends into the kids shouting, clapping their hands and stomping their feet. Eventually this breaks down into what I am sure was initially an out-take as you can hear their teacher asking them all to sit down and some kids starting their vocal warm ups in the background. I love it! The whole album just oozes character and a freakish, idiosyncratic zeal which has made my decision to crown Dead Man’s Bones my favorite album of 2009 a very easy one.

As mentioned earlier The Dead Man’s Bones project was originally planned as a stage show however, as they started to make the music it dawned on them just how much time and money the show would need investing to get it off the ground and decided to stick to the music. Initially the fact that this could have been a musical put me off, now I urge you to do your duty go buy the CD so Zach and Ryan have enough cash to fulfill their dream. You only need to check out these videos to see that they would make something very special indeed.

Well this is all very exciting, after a nudge from friend I have dipped my toe into the blogosphere, and not without some intrepidation. Not sure how this blogging lark will turn out but it gives me a place to put my compilations ‘n stuff.

This is the first comp I have put together for quite some time and will be part of a series called Nearly Comfortable. It takes the same ethos as the club night I used to run in Reading many years ago (kraked where I used to play as Mikerak) in that it is generally music for sitting and listening to while not being what most would refer to as ‘chillout’. You will not find any ethno-dub-chillax music on these comps, more likely it will be a mix of electronica, post rock, post metal, postman’s blues, plink plonk thunder, 7-step, under-bang, downcore, moosick and touch of acid skiffle.

Hope you enjoy

Track Listing:

1. Mickey’s Noise with June & Satan
2. Nosaj Thing – Light 1
3. DDamage – Aeroplanes
4. The Kilimanjaro Darkjazz Ensemble – Pearls for Swine
5. 65 Days of Static – Radio Protector
6. Deaf Centre – Stone Beacon
7. Aphex Twin – Avril 14th
8. Distance – Nomad
9.  Fuck Buttons – Surf Solar
10. The Jesus and Mary Chain – Snakedriver
11. Dead Prez Vs. Grizzly Bear – Two Weeks Of Hip Hop (The Hood Internet)
12. Wevie Stonder – Lady’s Leg Licked
13. Mickey the Fish – Sign Out