Monday, 2 December 2019

The pathology of love...

All the parallels of love with addiction on White Bread, Black Beer suggest that Green the writer still knows that love is essentially both pathology and cure, so Scritti's sweetness remains sick, their sickness sweet....
Mark Fisher - Scritti's sweet sickness on K-Punk

The benefit of Green Gartside's magnificent prevarication (or is it sublime perfectionism?) that has lead him to produce a total of 5 albums since 1982 (37 years and counting). Means that we have had ample time to absorb every hook, line and to (over) think about the familiar parallel world of love that his songs (he?) inhabits. 

From the first hearing of Skank Bloc Bologna via Confidence, Lions after slumber on to Snow in Sun off of his most recent album White Bread, Black Beer there is a distinct yearn that doesn't permeate the broad 'pop' landscape. Certainly not now, even back in the wild 80's when the new pop hegemony took hold, Green's voice and vision stood out from others crowding the darker edges of the dancefloor/charts. 

In this day and age, intellectual rigour no longer has a presence on Spotify playlists or indeed in life in general it has no place - certainly political discourse/scientific debate is no longer encumbered by intellectual rigour of any significant substance. It seems ironic that the only obvious place that advancement is truly being intellectual explored is in Sports science - but then there is money in goals!

So, Green and the Scritti Politti project stands out as a beacon of beauty and brilliance  yet at the same time the melancholy celebration of love continues to be anchored by the aforementioned yearn. The question must be is does the yearn need to be real or is it simply because it is unreal that we are more attracted to it?

Slip inside the soul of a song - choose any one - Faithless, Oh Patti, Bam Salute, Ummh!, The Boom Boom Bap and what do we find? Who do we find? The flicker of addiction, rejection, escape and redemption. 

Tears of sorrow, tears of joy
Oh come at once for the sweetest boy
(Nobody knows)
That's the price that the boy has paid
To choose not to be afraid


- Faithless

You know that barroom belles, well, they're calling
You know their perfume smells like blood
If looks could kill singing dollar, dollar bill
Well, that's the beat of my life


- The Boom Boom Bap

Oh first and foremost - ooh you gotta get close
To the money and the madness that are mine - at any time
And last but not least -- in the heart of the beast
There's a beauty that was once upon a time - and long ago


- Bam Salute

I'm cuttin' down on the stuff I'm thinking
Too much 'umm' drives a man insane
Promised my world to a girl forever
Now she can't take the blame
I should have gone where the sun was shining
Green can't come to the 'phone right now (my baby)
I could have shone like a dark star, baby


- Umm


The promise of new music is dangled before us every 12-18 months. The story goes that the album is all ready and good to go. Apparently it sounds brilliant but... nothing appears. His last album was a series of demo's, handed over to Geoff Travis of Rough Trade  for approval prior to going into the studio to complete. Fortunately Travis decided to accelerate the process by 5 years and simply released the demos - which still sound magnificent. 

Goodness knows the number of almost completed masterpieces that Green has locked away on a hard drive somewhere. All we can hope is that somebody can persuade him to share them with us before it all gets too late in the day.

In the meantime, we have the 5 albums, assorted EP's/singles, a couple of compilations and the hope that someday Green will share another snapshot or two. Until then all we can do is yearn...


Monday, 25 November 2019

Zero Hours

Twilight Gods,
choking
on the sticky bile of anxiety
turn in too late,
get up too early
and there is no way out of the maze
the exit has grown over
if ever an exit existed
the only sound is the
Minotaur
gnawing away
at the souls
of the
underpaid
& underfed
----
the terminal
unoccupied
AI leading
us nowhere
----
Zero hours
Zero days
Zero minutes
Zero breaths.

Wednesday, 6 November 2019

General Election - The Beginning of the End Game

I've been voting in UK general elections since 1983. My track record (33%) is pretty poor...

1983 - Lost
1987 - Lost
1992 - Lost
1997 - Won
2001 - Won
2005 - Won
2010 - Lost
2015 - Lost
2017 - Lost
2019 - ? 

However, this time feels as though it is the most crucial of them all. Britain has been poised on the brink of chaos for the last 5 years and the last 18 months has seen the situation slide ever quick towards genuine disorder...




Wednesday, 2 October 2019

Best Albums of the Decade (1st Jan 2010 - 31st December 2019) - Provisional List

A Certain RatioAcr:Box2019
ABCThe Lexicon of Love II2016
Alan Hawkshaw & Brian BennettFull Circle2018
Alison Statton & SpikeBimini Twist2018
Arctic MonkeysTranquility Base Hotel & Casino2018
Arctic MonkeysAM2013
BellowheadRevival2014
Ben WattFever Dream2016
Ben WattHendra2014
Billy BraggTooth & Nail2013
BlurThe Magic Whip2015
Chris WatsonEl Tren Fantasma2011
CTMFLast Punk Standing2019
CTMFIn the Devil's Focus2017
CTMFAll Our Forts Are With You 2013
Damian O'Neill And The MonotonesRefit Revise Reprise2018
Damon AlbarnEveryday Robots 2014
David BowieBlackstar2016
Durand Jones & The IndicationsDurand Jones & The Indications2016
Ebbot Lundberg & The Indigo ChildrenFor the Ages To Come2016
Edwyn CollinsBadbea2019
ElbowThe Take Off and Landing of Everything2014
Eyeless In GazaSun Blues2016
FONTAINES D.C.Dogrel2019
French BoutikFront Pop2016
GhostpoetPeanut Butter Blues and Melancholy Jam2011
GorillazPlastic Beach2010
Graham Day & The ForefathersGood Things2014
Gruff RhysPang!2019
Gruff RhysHotel Shampoo2011
Hollie CookHollie Cook in Dub (Prince Fatty Presents)2012
Holly GolightlyDo the Get Along2018
Holly GolightlySlowtown Now!2015
Jez KerrNumb Mouth Eat Waste2011
John's ChildrenBlack And White2011
Johnny MarrAdrenalin Baby - Johnny Marr Live2015
Johnny MarrThe Messenger2013
Judy Dyble & Andy LewisSummer Dancing2017
Kamasi WashingtonHeaven and Earth2018
KanoMade in the Manor2016
King Creosote & Jon HopkinsDiamond Mine Jubilee Edition2012
LEVELZLVL 112016
MadnessCan't Touch Us Now2016
Martin Carthy & Eliza CarthyThe Moral of the Elephant2014
Matt DeightonDoubtless Dauntless2018
Michael Head & The Red Elastic BandAdiós Señor Pussycat2017
Miles KaneColour of the Trap2011
Monks Road SocialOut of Bounds2019
Monks Road SocialDown the Willows2019
Nick Cave & The Bad SeedsSkeleton Tree2016
Nick Cave & The Bad SeedsPush the Sky Away2013
Nick HeywardWoodland Echoes2017
Paul WellerOther Aspects, Live at the Royal Festival Hall2019
Paul WellerTrue Meanings2018
Paul WellerWake Up the Nation2010
PopincourtA New Dimension to Modern Love2016
PugwashSilverlake2017
RadioheadA Moon Shaped Pool2016
Richard HawleyStanding At the Sky's Edge2012
Robyn HitchcockRobyn Hitchcock2017
Roddy FrameSeven Dials2014
Rolling Blackouts Coastal FeverHope Downs2018
Saint EtienneHome Counties2017
Saint EtienneWords and Music By Saint Etienne2012
Scroobius PipDistraction Pieces2011
Sharon Jones and The Dap-KingsSoul Time!, Vol. 12011
Shirley CollinsLodestar2016
Silver JewsEarly Times2012
SkeptaKonnichiwa2016
Sleaford ModsEnglish Tapas2017
Sleaford ModsKey Markets2015
Sleaford ModsChubbed Up+2014
SonzeiraBrasil Bam Bam Bam2014
Spoek MathamboMshini Wam2010
Stone FoundationStreet Rituals2017
StormzyGang Signs & Prayer2017
Tame ImpalaLonerism (Bonus Track Version)2012
The Advisory CircleAs the Crow Flies2011
The Amorphous AndrogynousThe Peppermint Tree and…2010
The BookendsFar Away but Around2018
The CoralMove Through the Dawn2018
The CoralButterfly House2010
The Duckworth Lewis MethodSticky Wickets2013
The Everlasting YeahAnima Rising2015
The FallNew Facts Emerge2017
The Fallen LeavesWhat We've All Been Waiting For2017
The Fallen LeavesIf Only We'd Known2013
The Galileo 7There Is Only Now2019
The Galileo 7Tear Your Minds Wide Open!2017
The Galileo 7False Memory Lane2014
The Good, the Bad & the QueenMerrie Land2018
The Goon SaxWe're Not Talking2018
The HeliocentricsThe Sunshine Makers2017
The Imagined VillageEmpire & Love2010
The Jack CadesMusic for Children2018
The Len Price 3Kentish Longtails2017
The Len Price 3Nobody Knows2014
The MobbsPiffle!2016
The MobbsGarage Punk for Boys2014
The Orchestra of Syrian MusiciansAfrica Express Presents…2017
The OriellesSilver Dollar Moment2018
The Pop GroupHoneymoon on Mars2016
The Pop GroupCitizen Zombie2015
The Red InspectorsAre We The Red Inspectors Are We2012
The Senior ServiceKing Cobra2018
The Senior ServiceThe Girl In the Glass Case2016
The Sensation SeekersJerk Beat2018
The Sound of Pop ArtThe Beat the Beautiful and the Loaded2018
The Sound of Pop ArtDrama2016
The SoundcarriersCeleste2010
The SpecialsEncore (Deluxe)2019
The StrypesSnapshot (Deluxe Version)2013
The Wave PicturesLook Inside Your Heart2018
The ZemblasToo Much Too Soul2012
Theatre Royal...And Then It Fell out of My Head.2017
Thee SpivsThe Crowds and the Sounds2013
Thee SpivsTaped Up2010
Tunng...And Then We Saw Land2010
Ural Thomas & the PainThe Right Time2018
VillagersThe Art of Pretending to Swim2018
WileyGodfather2017
Will Burns & Hannah PeelChalk Hill Blue2019
WireSilver / Lead2017
WireNocturnal Koreans2016
WireWire2015
ZombyUltra2016
ZombyWhere Were U In '92 ?2012