Tuesday, 10 December 2013

Year-End Wrap Up Part 1 -- Music

Quotation of the day ~ Unknown: I wanted to send you something amazing for Christmas, but the mailman told me to get out of the mailbox... 

Right, well, it may be a little early, but as there's nothing new in music on the horizon, i've decided to begin my year-end wrap up with albums, beginning with a list of every CD i bought this year, because i know how interested you are, so in no particular order:

Black Country Communion – Afterglow           
Rival Sons – Head Down               
Rival Sons – Pressure And Time           
O.S.T. - The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo           
Paul Simon – Live In New York City           
Big Wreck –In Loving Memory Of...           
Colin James – Twenty Five Live                       
Paula Cole – Raven                       
Big Wreck – The Pleasure And The Greed                       
Mick Abrahams – Cat Squirrel Blues           
Sheryl Crow – Feels Like Home           
Fish – Feast Of Consequences           
The Lovin' Spoonful –Greatest Hits                       
Sammy Hagar – Sammy Hagar & Friends           
Rory Gallagher – Kickback City           
Rod Stewart – Rarities           
The Beatles – On Air -- Live At The BBC Volume  2
Martin Carthy & Dave Swarbrick – Walnut Creek           
Richard Thompson – Cabaret Of Souls           
Kate Rusby – 20           
Richard Thompson -- Electric           
John Kirkpatrick – Every Mortal Place           
Maddy Prior with Hannah James & Giles Lewin – 3 For Joy           
June Tabor / Iain Ballamy / Huw Warren – Quercus           
Bert Jansch – Avocet

The Albion Band -- Rise Up Like The Sun

Yes, twenty seven albums, long gone are the days when i would buy 100 CDs a year. Internet downloads are partly responsible for this (legal or illegal -- i'm not telling). There's also the fact that so many of the artists i love are either dead or inactive now, most current "pop" music holds no interest for me, and there's also the minor fact that i already have a vast collection and so little music-listening time, and so i'm maybe a bit more careful about what i buy.

That said, here are this year's best ofs. Note: many of these were released prior to 2013, but i include them because i only bought them this year, so there!

Song of the year: "The Immigrant Song" by Trent Reznor (vocal by Karen O.) (from "The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo" soundtrack).    Fabulous techno-grunge version of the Led Zeppelin song http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L0bD4ts8eWY

Album of the year: "A Feast Of Consequences" by Fish. The former Marillion lead singer's solo albums have been either great or, shall i say, less than interesting, but this is without a doubt  the finest album of his solo career.

Runners-up: "Head Down" by Rival Sons -- a new rock band that actually rocks, rather than pounds. 

And "Sammy Hagar & Friends" by Sammy -- well, apart from my dear sister, who doesn't love Sammy?

Re-issue of the year: "Kickback City" by Rory Gallagher. As i have said ad nauseam, Rory was my fave guitarist ever. He was a fan of hard-boiled detective novels and this set is a collection of his songs that were inspired by Dashiel Hammett, etc. It's actually a 3-CD set -- disc one is all previously released schtuff, disc two is live performances that were only previously available on the "Live From Cork" DVD (which -- here's a surprise! -- i happen to have). Disc 3 is actor Aidan Quinn (big Rory fan) reading a specially-written novella by Ian Rankin (one of my fave writers and also a big Rory fan) called "The Lie Factory." All re-issues should be this sumptuous.

Runner-up: "Rarities" by Rod Stewart. No, really. Younger readers may find it difficult to believe but before he became an utterly irrelevant and boring old fart, Rod was a true rocker and a folk/blues dynamo -- and "Rarities" collects rare and unreleased schtuff from 1969-1974. His heyday and i love it. 

And that's the state of music chez nous, 2013, except to add my most recent playlist:

The Kinks - Soap Opera
Pink Floyd - A Momentary Lapse Of Reason
Robin Trower - Roots And Branches
Sammy Hagar - Sammy Hagar & Friends
The Beatles - 1
Vinegar Joe - Live At Golder's Green
George Harrison - 33 and 1/3
The Beatles - On Air
Dagmar Krause - Angebot & Nachfrage
Jethro Tull - Repeat
Yes - Close To The Edge
Sparks - Kimono My House
Steve Hackett - Watcher Of The Skies
Ashley Hutchings - The Compleat Dancing Master
J.S. Bach - Violin Concertos BWV 1041-1042-1043-1064

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