CHAFFINCH About a year and a half ago, The List received a handmade box from Lanarkshire’s melodious Chaffinch records. It contained several excellent seven-inch singles, a handwritten note from label boss David Love, and a scattering of tiny shells and gemstones. Needless to say, we’ve been smitten since . . . When and why did you start Chaffinch? ‘I love Fence Records and in the past I helped Kenny Anderson get his releases into some record stores and organised the first few Fence Collective gigs in Glasgow: that gave me a little taste for it. I was made redundant in 2005 and fancied doing something interesting with the money, so I started Chaffinch.’ Why Chaffinch? ‘I liked the idea of the vinyl catalogue numbers being 7FINCHEP1 and so on. Also a chaffinch is a shy but feisty little bird which I’d like to think kind of describes the label’s character.’ What artists have you released to date? ‘The Second Hand Marching Band (pictured), Burnt Island, Anthony Reynolds, Immigrant, Lucky Luke, King Creosote, South Downs, Rich Amino, La Muñeca de Sal, Hindle & Halliday, Sancho and The Stevenson Ranch Davidians.’ How important is the label’s visual and physical aesthetic? ‘Very. Ideally I’d release everything on vinyl but it’s just not financially viable. Initially my intention was to have a unified look for the artwork. It hasn’t worked out like that, but I do think it’s important that each release has artwork that stands on its own merit.’ What advice would you offer other DIY labels? ‘Try not to do everything by yourself. I make sure the bands and artists put some effort in and I’ve roped in friends and family to help too. The internet has a huge influence on how you reach out to listeners / buyers I have a good friend, Steven Ross, who’s been helping me improve the Chaffinch site.’ What Chaffinch treats are on the horizon? ‘Currently in the works are Lucky Luke’s Travelling for a Living album and also a compendium of Anthony Reynolds’ work. Then hopefully releases from Burnt Island, South Downs, Ghostwriter and The Second Hand Marching Band.’ (Nicola Meighan)

66 THE LIST 18 Nov–2 Dec 2010

KINKS DUETS RAY DAVIES See My Friends (Universal) ●●●●●

Ray Davies must throw some pretty good parties, judging by the pretty esteemed list of friends he’s recruited to help out here. The latest endeavour from The Kink’s mainman goes collaborative, revisiting his back catalogue with friends, including Bon Jovi, Bruce Springsteen, Jackson Browne and Mumford and Sons. It’s when he joins

Metallica for the classic ‘You Really Got Me’, which effervesces some much needed vitality, and Snow Patrol’s Gary Lightbody on ‘Tired of Waiting’, that See My Friends really shines, but this retrospective dip into The Kinks folklore too often meanders into a karaoke sing-a-long with Ray. (Chris Cope)

SCOT-POP-ROCK REISSUE IDLEWILD 100 Broken Windows 10th Anniversary Edition (EMI) ●●●●●

Despite making The List feel hideously old, this 10th anniversary re- release of a bona fide classic is a hugely welcome one. Devotees will pour over the wealth of live and exclusive goodies featured here (including tracks recorded by Shellac’s Bob Weston) but, more importantly, granting 100 Broken Windows the full special edition treatment finally gives the record the respect it deserves.

Idlewild’s second studio offering sounded unlike anything else around back in May 2000. Mixing bookish lyrics with romanticism and an infectious frenzy

of blustery riffs and rhythmic clatter, it was slightly out of step with the modern world and yet meant so much to those who ‘got it’. An apt reminder then, of why Idlewild were once, and will remain, so utterly vital. (Camilla Pia) POLITICISED DISCO- PUNK BOBBY CONN Rise Up! (Fire) ●●●●●

‘I can’t help you baby, when the empire falls,’ warbles futurist New York psych-disco troubadour Bobby Conn early on in this reissue from 1998, and he’s either talking about the Evil Galactic Empire or just plain ol’ America. Taking ‘inspired’ and ‘ground-breaking’ and smashing them together like a nuclear airburst, this excellent and primed-for-rediscovery concept record combines paranoid no- wave punk politics with sensual and histrionic space disco, including fine impressions of Prince on the title track, Freddie Mercury on ‘United Nations’ and George Clinton throughout. One tea-leaf reading moment among many, during the yelped Tom Waits freak-jazz of ‘Passover’: ‘I’m a (B)ush / and I’m gonna send some plagues upon you’. (David Pollock) Bobby Conn plays Rise Up! at The Arches, Glasgow, Mon 28 Nov. KIDDIE PUNK THE GREEN DOOR KIDS Muzikal Yooth (Optimo Music) ●●●●●

regresses the punk spirit to its foetal form; a desire to make noise and express oneself, regardless of ability. At its best this means

particularly raw and unschooled versions of tracks like The Cramps’ ‘The Way I Walk’, a confidently creeped-out original composition called ‘Metaphysical Circus’ and a quite gorgeous take on Elvis’ ‘Girl of My Best Friend’ by Clare Whyte. Optimo’s presence suggests a kind of Weegie Langley Schools Music Project; it’s not that good, but it is a different and occasionally quite surprising package. (David Pollock)

JAZZ FINN PETERS Music of the Mind (Mantella Records) ●●●●●

Arguably all music is at least initially of the mind, but there is an extra degree of literal description in the title of the saxophonist’s latest project. Peters worked with Dr Mick Grierson at Goldsmith’s University to map his brain waves, using them as the basis for the resulting music, either literally tran- scribing the patterns or using them as launching points for improvisation. Given the eclecticism of Peters’ interests his CV spans Dizzee Rascal to the London Sinfonietta the music is predictably diverse. Don’t expect Radio Workshop-style weird abstraction, though from ‘Popcorn Brain’s stomping funk to the seething finale of ‘Virus’, Peters and his band (including computer music expert Matthew Yee King) create a pulsating fusion of jazz, ambient and dance music. (Kenny Mathieson)

Recorded at Glasgow’s Green Door Studio and featuring 10 to 25-year- old students of the workshops and music production courses there, this compilation

WORLD FEMI KUTI Africa For Africa (Wrasse Records) ●●●●● With songs like ‘Bad

Government’ and ‘Nobody Beg’ Femi Kuti not only takes up the cause of ordinary Nigerians and Africans but consciously takes on the mantel of his father, the late Fela Kuti, as scourge of corrupt politics. With his saxophone leading raucous horn riffs, exuberant vocals and rumbling organ over tight percussion, there is a thrilling exuberance here, as good as seeing Femi’s live show with his warrior women chorus dancers. Militant dance music comes no more powerful than this. (Jan Fairley) Femi Kuti plays the Picture House, Edinburgh, Wed 1 Dec; and The Arches, Glasgow, Thu 2 Dec. TRIBUTE MUSICAL ORIGINAL BROADWAY CAST RECORDING Fela! (Cast Records) ●●●●●

If you can’t get to London’s National Theatre to see the show telling the extraordinary life of Afrobeat’s Fela Kuti, look no further than this tremendous recording of the original Broadway show. It evokes Lagos in the mid-70s, Fela’s nightclub The Shrine built in the family compound, and the police attack that killed his mother and took Kuti to torture, prison and then an attempt at the presidency. Sahr Ngaujah makes a convincing Kuti, the man who, through music which blended jazz, funk, highlife and traditional African rhythms and provocative lyrics, challenged corruption in Africa’s most populous country. (Jan Fairley)