Oh look, it’s December already. This is good news for a host of reasons, not least that I can now play my favourite Christmas song on loop for the next 25 days, until sanity leaves me. I can then put the CD back on the shelf for another 11 months, by which time the process can start all over again. Excellent.
The song, by the way, is the wonderful I Was Born On Christmas Day by Saint Etienne [performing here on a typically chaotic episode of The Word]. The ANBAD Donkey has got into the Christmas spirit too.
FIRST! You Animals are cranking out the kind of rock music that is always welcome – that is: songs that provide exactly three minutes of thrills, exhilaration and innate encouragement to bounce along to with carefree abandon in a sweaty provincial Indie disco. This is not a time for subtlety or carefully crafted polyrhythms, but simply a time for you, and You Animals, to have a blast. Pop music. Good stuff.
SECOND! Franklin seem to have written a song or two about cats. Nothing wrong with that, I suppose. It’s just that… well – they’re sneaky, aren’t they? Sly. They’d cosy up to someone else if they were to feed them better. Franklin – AKA Franck Rabeyrolles – is all of those things, too. By which, I mean that Cat Authority creeps slyly, building subtly and dreamily, metaphorically rubbing up against your leg and demanding tuna steak. Lovely, calm, subtle music.
THIRD! The Captive Hearts sound a bit like The La’s. This can only be a good thing,and the band don’t suffer one bit in comparison. Hummingbird is, aptly, a delicate, beautiful and darting song that deserves to soundtrack a thousand teenage TV coming-of-age dramas. The jangling Merseybeat sound is necessarily rooted in time, and this lends their songs a genuinely delightful feather-light feel. A pleasure.
FOURTH! Hey Sholay‘s songs are all demos, it appears, but if I was them, I wouldn’t dream of recording them ‘properly’. In their current form, songs like Dreamboat are little, sweet, crystallised nuggets of rough and scuzzy jangle-pop. A producer’s touch may turn them into MOR Radio 2-fodder, and that would be a genuine crime. Listen now, while the youth and scuffle still exists in these songs.
FINALLY! Wayter, at the very least, prove that there aren’t enough songs about foodstuffs. The humble Cheese Sandwich certainly hasn’t crept onto many songs in the past, and yet, here’s a whole one devoted to it. And some song it is too. It’s creepy, brash and cranky in the exact manner in which a cheese sandwich itself usually isn’t. Cunning.