It's too early for silly season. ain‘t it? That doesn’t stop Sccusa iretrnonkeys Tramp Attack a- yodellii ig and a-hollering on the nonsensical skiffle pop of ‘1471 (Must Destroy COO ). Equally daft. but also great. are Raar. the Black lsle's answer to Tygers of Pan Tang (ask yer metalhead grannie). ‘Longncrn' (Dynamo 0000 )is Diamondhead in fut-w breaks. and therefore great. Death to false metal.
Yet more daftness from The Dead 603 who are but nippers yet skark it almost exactly like a cross between eariy Madness and the Specials on the intrigurng and accomplished 'You're Not the Law’ (Deltasonic .00 l Right. that's skiffle. metal and ska already. What next? Scary ambient electronica. of course courtesy of Four Tet. ‘My Angel Rocks Back and Earth (Domino 0... ) starts oft all breath, and creepy like a robot haying 'd’l asthma attack. thci‘. iayers sumptuous rhythms and melodies or. top to create something part n'iatns puzzle. part heartbreak.
To more mundane sounds with ‘Open Yow Eyes' (Pedestrian C. l by Moka. yet another local bunch labouring under the illusion that it's the 90s and Britpop's about to break. It's on Pedestrian Records. Very apt. El Presidente have rnucn more bottle. and 'Without You' (One 00. i is Spar igly retro pop which sounds vaguely like Prefab Sprout wrth Marc Bolan singing.
There's no such technical know-how from Glasgow's The Hector Collectors. who seem to have srnartened up their shambolic act a little with ‘Dollitication EP‘ (Stoleriwine COO . which contains Six Slices of jaunty and eccentric indie.
More local stuff arrives in the Split single shape of Multiplies and The Kitchen. Multiplies' ‘Egonomics' (Mr Biji 0” )aims at Franz Ferdinand retro new wave dance scuttles and hits its mark reasonably well, while ‘Notch‘ (Mr Bill 0. l by the Kitchen is harder edged. angular retro dance. sadly let down by some seriously irritating vocals.
And so to spotty skatekid pin-up Avril Lavigne. “Don’t Tell Me‘ (Arista CO ) is the first single from her new album and is utterly indistinguishable from her previous umpteen airbrushed angst anthems. Like, completely similar. dude. If it ain't broke. eh, Avril? Mind you, it's still better than 'Our Lives' (RCA ) by The Calling which is the worst kind of soulless. insipid. MTV-lite. cliched. corporate cock-sucking rock imaginable.
All of which misery doesn’t prepare you for the wondrous sound of The Chalets on their Single of the Fortnight double A-Side explosion. ‘Theme from Chalets/Sexy Mistake' (Nastypop COCO ) is the debut from this loopy Irish fivesome and it sounds like the Breeders wired off their nuts on alcopops having a saucy roll in the hay with the 852s Fucking superb, in other words. (Doug Johnstone)
108 THE LIST /‘! Ao' ‘ﬁi Mia, .
BLUES HOth GOMEZ
Split the Difference (Virgil r) O...
Uorno/ in new techno direction shocker! Only joking: it's definitely busrness as usual for the perennial student rockers fourth albun i. offei‘ii‘ig up the prize Winning formula of rOugh arOund the edges blues wrapped around huininable melodies. With producer and engineer Tchad Blake of Pearl Jam and Tom Waits tame on board. the reSult's appropriately somewhere Det‘i'i‘eer‘i the two. although leans more towards the more condensed sotind of Vedder and co and slightly further from tllt’: graxel voiced legend than on previous Hit/OIUS.
‘I prefer” picking up old <‘tlt')till‘i5 \‘v’lltklt: 3t)“ kl‘iOi'r you'll l)t: happy lul ‘15) ll‘iilitiltkb.. Says l)rii"i(l ii‘it2iiit)t,~i loin Gray. Mission accon‘iplished. itinina Neu'v'laridsl
l-Ut K PUP DENISON WITMER Philadephia Songs (Bad taste) 0.0.
Uiiliki: so many iriusicians who got to put up a Slll()k(:f>(£lt:t:ll of studio Itlt;k(;l\,’ to conceal their limitations. Sil’igei‘ songwriters never have that much to hide behind. Denison Witmer is no exception. Even when armed wrth only a warm acoustic Six Stringer and some heartfelt intentions he shines.
Phi/adepnia Songs. his third long player. but the first to be released here. is part tribute to his adOpted home town and Wlthlll the sparse arrangements there are echoes of Crowded Houses sublime pop and Eiiiott Smith's
Wave of Mutilation: The Best of the Pixies
Classic. Yes, that classic
They didn’t look like much but they had it where it counts. Back in the late
805 when Pixies ruled the world, Robert Smith was still a legit teen heart throb, Napalm Death were cutting edge and Bobby Gillespie was proclaiming himself a rock god (no, this was the first time round). Come to think of it actually, the Pixies never ruled anything, not in the way that folks like the Strokes have. They just existed and got pretty famous making very fine music called indie rock. But this was in a quaint time pre-Cobain, when there was a real musical alternative, and this Boston four-piece were it. This is a brief recap before they return, freshly reformed to play T in the Park this summer. Of the 23 tracks here, the majority have been culled from Surfer Rosa and Doolittle, two of the finest albums of the 19805. This best of provides a suitable introduction to their back catalogue, which was impeccable up until they went off colour around the time of their final album. With the former, they built a wall of guitars and screamed to get out and on the latter they honed this to near perfection. They’ve just started playing gigs again in the US
and the word is good.
Roll on July. (Mark Robertson)
plaintive trailties. whiih. i.'.«ht';i‘i t;oiiit)ii‘ii;(l. inakt; lol Sol i it: set rotish (:l‘i‘iUIivtz. \‘thl‘iOlOtiS bltln. (Mark Hothirtsoi‘il
c‘OoN l HY DEAN OWENS
My Town (Verticall 0000
Dean Owe.- is has long been one of Scotland's best kept musical secrets. The former Folsons singer 's solo material is often breathtaking in its beautiful simplicity. and this tulsoino and lush record is the tlipsido to Owoi is" super t) stripped down Urorna Tapes of a couple of years ago. My Town sees Owens expanding from his heartfelt COuntry scund to inelude rock. pop and even a hint of jazz and French folk courtesy of a great collection of local
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IAIN ARCHER Flood the Tanks iBnglit Stan COO
NOrthern Irish Singer songwriter Iain Archer has been kiCKing arOond fOr a while now and has prBVlOUSly turned Out for both the Reindeer Section and Snow Patrol. This solo effort is an intriguing affair. a jar“) OC‘JJl‘iDC'dI Silg‘t) through indie tenstory which hits its strado on occasion but also suffers from too much middling tiller. Illult: are otnaos ol
Shins; Pat"::i. (liar‘di‘idd,
and Siut'klttlltﬂbt: hurt: ttflt’l I.’lt:lt:. [Jill /\l\.l‘it.‘l furtﬂlrti k1.:)l[lk,|ill'\:(1 It) ttxilly Itikt: oil 'i' iit) t‘. :i o.'..'r sound. this Is stil .i decent. (tillitﬂilltltrl't slitgt: ot ir‘iolaritgtlol.t; !i'i(llt: rook. it's Just that ;.o.i can't holg; toolrg tr‘tzro's lllUli,‘ and pelt-o" to (IUlllt? fro?" t'it: man. 'Dotitj .Jtili'tsto'lo.
'iil’l1123’ PETE ROCK
Soul Survivor 2 HBE Napster» O...
iait‘iirtt it)! his (last; Ja/z’ ioops a'iti hasovr‘ioi‘t breaks. imp "or: producer relaxer extraordinaire Pete Rock. along initn rapper CL Smooth. was the architect of some o‘ 905 rap's ‘inest moments. Six years after the ‘irst Sour Surviver set. Rocks stuck to his trademark
geiden age grooves. when stirl sotind fresh