Virgin of the Birds Toad Session from Song, by Toad on Vimeo.
Photos – Flickr
Video – Vimeo – YouTube
Session tracks - Soundcloud – zip download (right click – save as)
Interview podcast – mp3 – iTunes – Mixcloud (playlist at bottom of page)
Virgin of the Birds first started to become part of the Toad family when he played our first ever New Year’s House Gig back in, erm… I dunno, was it 2009 maybe? Jon’s free EPs were pretty much all firm favourites around here, and despite the understatement of his music it was stuff I just kept going back to again and again.
I liked them so much that when we released our 5 Year Box Set Jon and I put together a compilation of the very best bits to release on record, and then, despite having not had a formal Virgin of the Birds release for years he suddenly came up with a new album around the same time. The timing was ideal, and so we ended up releasing that in May as well, coincidentally around the time Jon came over to the UK to play some shows.
Mrs. Toad and I had just moved house, and so this ended up being the first session recorded in our new place – with a whole new set of neighbours to annoy. Neil and Reuben from Supermoon helped out by playing on a couple of the tracks, the awesome Nic Rue took the pictures for us again, and Dylan, Ian and Steve all came round to say hello and occasionally get roped into helping me and Nic with the filming. So yes, this is what Toad Sessions are going to look like from now on. No more turquoise walls!
Full Interview Podcast:
Toadcast #311 – Virgin of the Birds Toad Session by Song, By Toad on Mixcloud
01. Virgin of the Birds – Queen of Sweden (Toad Session) (00.22)
02. The Delgados – Been Accused of Stealing (live) (12.26)
03. Pavement – Frontwards (18.49)
04. Virgin of the Birds – Let Me Be Your Bride (Toad Session) (31.05)
05. The Savings and Loan – Catholic Boys in the Rain (44.10)
06. The Lovely Sparrows – Bury the Cynics (48:30)
07. Virgin of the Birds – The Serpent Plume (Toad Session) (58.19)
08. Meursault – Crank Resolutions (1.09.02)
09. Liz Phair – May Queen (1.13.55)
10. Virgin of the Birds – Ilona, You Should Still Be My Vampire Attendant (Toad Session) (1.25.57)
Alright alright, so the name of this might have absolutely hee-haw relation to the actual content of the podcast. It’s just that I went to the tip today in Bette, as I usually do, and they spat the dummy and tried to charge me commercial rates to dispose of my rubbish and recycling because the car had fucking ‘advertising’ on the side of it. As in, daft rally stickers. Does Bette seriously look like a fucking company car to you, you morons?
Despite the fact that I emptied it all out on the ground and asked them to point to the commercial waste, of which there was precisely none, the best they could manage was ‘well this time it’s okay, but next time…’ Next time what? Fucking what? Stupid stickers on the side of a car means I can’t use the fucking municipal dump? Fucking idiots.
Anyhow, pointless and utterly futile outrage aside, here are some excellent tunes for you once again. Next week will be the Virgin of the Birds Toad Session, so keep an eye out for that as well. Ahh. Pub.
Toadcast #310 – The Tipcast by Song, By Toad on Mixcloud
01. Malcom Middleton & David Shrigley – A Toast (00.57.)
02. Hamilton Leithauser – Room For Forgiveness (06.40)
03. C. Duncan – For (15.55)
04. ColeFord – Chains (19.47)
05. Adam Faucett – Benton (25.15)
06. Music Recordings – Virgin Galactic (31.44)
07. Malcolm Middleton & David Shrigley – Story Time (34.31)
08. s>c>r>a>p>s – Siri (42.39)
09. Scraps – Asleep (45.07)
10. Dan Michaelson & the Coastguards – Burning Hearts (51.53)
11. Trips and Falls – Your Consequences are Bullshit (59.17)
I can’t really believe I’ve not done an Edincast before. I mean, I live here, I work here, I run a label here and I go out to gigs here all the time. How has this not happened yet? I’ve done numerous Scottish ones, label ones, and even Manchester ones although I’m not really from there, but Edinburgh has never happened for some reason.
And why has it happened now? Well I was at the Creative Edinburgh Awards last night and had put together an Edinburgh playlist specifically for the purpose, but the organisers (probably very wisely) just asked the DJs to play through, instead of using my stuff, so I never had the chance to annoy people with my deliberately obtuse choices. Actually, most of them weren’t all that obtuse really… just one or two.
So given the muzzling yesterday I figured I could just put most of these songs on a podcast and, let’s face it, play them to a much more receptive audience. I mean, The Leg, The Love Gestures, Passion Pusher… not really suitable for last night’s Gathering of the Middle Classes. It was fun, though. There was awesome cake and our pals Olaf (Born to Be Wide) and Tommy Perman and Rob St. John (Water of Life) both won awards. And I had too much gin. So a good night all round, really!
Toadcast #309 – The Edincast by Song, By Toad on Mixcloud
01. The Shop Assistants – I Don’t Wanna Be Friends With You (01.40)
02. Fire Engines – Sympathetic Anaesthetic (07.27)
03. Idlewild – I’m A Message (12.53)
04. Lucky Jim – You Stole My Heart Away (15.33)
05. The Love Gestures – Hey Man (20.24)
06. FOUND – Machine Age Dancing (27.46)
07. Broken Records – So Long, So Late (36.19)
08. Numbers Are Futile – Monster (46.05)
09. Passion Pusher – Couch King (50.19)
10. Young Fathers – Get Up (59.55)
Photos – Flickr
Session tracks - Soundcloud – zip download (right click – save as)
Interview podcast – mp3 – iTunes – Mixcloud (playlist at bottom of page)
So this is the second Broken Records Toad Session. We actually packed a band with four guitarists and a full drum kit into our living room and decided that, fuck it, of course it would sound fine. And you know what, somewhat magically it does. Alright the drums could have done with more than one mic, and perhaps we didn’t have all that much control when we had to use one mic for two guitar amps, but they recordings sound really good if you ask me.
The reason we did a second session with Broken Records is because our first was recorded in the dark days of the internet when YouTube footage was published in 640 x 480 format and those videos now look like they were recorded back before steam trains. Ironically, and to my infinite frustration, having decided to do another session in order to upgrade the quality of what we did all those years ago, we actually managed to lose all the video for this one. Yes, all of it. We actually managed to lose an entire camera when we moved house, including the memory card with all my video on it, and Gavin’s hard drive, containing all his shots, had a meltdown too, so all that went as well.
I cannot express how much hair-pulling has taken place ransacking old drives for backup versions, nor how incredibly sorry I am for the band going to all that effort only for this to happen, but there’s nothing for it I’m afraid. It just isn’t there. So what you get instead is a series of photos by Nic Rue, the interview podcast and our session recordings. It’s all really, really good stuff, but not having the video still makes me smash my head against the fucking desk.
Full interview podcast:
Toadcast #308 – Broken Records Toad Session v2 by Song, By Toad on Mixcloud
01. Broken Records – Winterless Son (Toad Session) (00.21)
02. Sun Kil Moon – Pancho Villa (10.32)
03. Electrelane – The Partisan (15.41)
04. Broken Records – Weights & Pulleys (Toad Session) (23.52)
05. Stereolab – Super Electric (29.08)
06. The B-52s – Love Shack (34.26)
07. Broken Records – All Else Can Just Wait (Toad Session) (49.23)
08. Car Seat Headrest – Bodys (56.44)
09. Mark Eitzel – Proclaim Your Joy (1.03.55)
10. Broken Records – Wolves (Toad Session) (1.16.10)
Yep, not gin anymore, these days I drink coffee with my podcasts. Nostalgia really isn’t what it used to be, is it. I remember when I was wild, rude, inebriated, etc. etc…
Mind you, seeing as I am driving through to Glasgow once I finish this to engage in sensitive negotiations with a ‘hot new band’*, I think half a bottle of gin might not be the wisest preparation, even by my rather slapdash standards. So it’s a pot of coffee and some fine new music, and you know, I may even keep the nonsensical rambling to a minimum if I can manage it.
It’s going to be weird driving through to Glasgow actually, because I will be taking a friend’s car instead of Bette, because it has a working tape player while Bette’s is currently out of action. It’s still a Volvo estate, but just a normal one, and I have to confess it feels kind of weird that no-one does their ‘what the fuck is that?’ stare when I drive past. I’ve kind of grown used to that over the last year or two with the old girl.
Toadcast #307 – The Joecast by Song, By Toad on Mixcloud
01. Becky Becky – I Remember, I Remember… (00.16)
02. Huerequeque – Homöopaatiline Epopöa (05.32)
03. Sex Hands – On a Break (15.47)
04. Jeff Flashinski – Disillusion (21.31)
05. eagleowl – Clean the Night (24.25)
06. Furs – An Eye on the Vicious (29.45)
07. Max Garcia Conover – Wildfires Outside Laramie, WY (33.45)
08. Waiters – What For Art Thou (43.52)
09. Sea Pinks – Dream Happening (47.12)
10. Maston – Gold Leaf (52.45)
11. Water World – Cream Soda (56.44)
12. Frankie Cosmos – Owen (1.00.23)
*Disclaimer: we are NEVER in negotiations with ‘hot’ new anything. As you well know.
This is called the Crumbscast for no better reasons than that I like the name and that it starts with a song called Crumbs, the new single by Jonnie Common. Given I’ve had to try and think up unique names for all of these bastard things anything which sounds good and has at least a tenuous link to the topic at hand will do.
I’ve not done a podcast for ages actually, but the last one was the one just before the independence referendum, and I still feel so utterly let down and disappointed with how that went that I’ve been unable to really talk about it since. On you go, Westminster, you’re doing a decent enough job really – at least a better one than we could ever hope to do on our own. Is that really the message we just delivered to the world? Yes, yes I think it is, at least to some degree. How sad.
So you see, probably a good thing that I waited at least a couple of weeks for the worst of the depressed bitterness to wear off. I almost get dragged into it at the start of the podcast, but like a champ I manage to break free and deliver an hour (and a little bit) of the usual awesome music that no-one’s really heard of because the world is WRONG about music. Sorry.
Toadcast #306 – The Crumbscast by Song, By Toad on Mixcloud
01. Jonnie Common – Crumbs (00.22)
02. Tired Tape Machine – Your Ghost (07.30)
03. Passion Pusher – BLT (17.18)
04. Allison Crutchfield – Supermoon (22.22)
05. Sun Kil Moon – War On Drugs (31.01)
06. Velvet Morning – Green Whale (40.31)
07. 808s and Greatest Hits – Great Western featuring A. Fantastic Reprise (48.44)
08. Memory in Plant – Rainy Veins (54.09)
09. H. Hawkline – Black Domino Box (58.01)
10. Wallflower – Ambien (1.03.02)
This podcast is not really all that referendumy, I thin… actually, I suppose it is kind of. I’m sorry to do this to you, but it’s more or less unavoidable at this stage because if you’re in Scotland it’s impossible to think of anything else. I started off trying to make it apolitical and just play some tenuously connected songs, but fuck it, in the end it inevitably seeped in.
In the words of the utterly obscure (but excellent) MC Quake: “It feels good to be in Scotland; it feels like home.”
I have no idea how it’s all going to go of course, and I am not the sort of ideological idiot who thinks it will be fucking amazing or fucking disastrous either way. I am looking for a marginal improvement, and that will be good enough for me. It’s become my home, Scotland, almost by accident. I ended up studying here and then entirely coincidentally fell in love with a Scottish girl and found myself back, some five years after graduating.
And now I’m here. Possibly permanently. Which is a strange thought, given I had no reason to end up here.
Toadcast #305 – The Indycast by Song, By Toad on Mixcloud
01. The Sound of Music – So Long, Farewell (00.22)
02. The Futureheads – Yes/No (01.21)
03. MC Quake – Feels Good To Be In Scotland (06.59)
04. Ballboy – I Hate Scotland (13.09)
05. Gloria Gaynor – I Will Survive (21.03)
06. The Police – Every Breath You Take (25.21)
07. Big Joe Williams – Baby Please Don’t Go (30.33)
08. The Delgados – Aye Today (36.37)
09. Eliot Smith – Say Yes (41.45)
10. REM – It’s the End of the World as We Know It (48.00)
11. Billy Bragg – Take Down the Union Jack (56.04)
12. Orange Juice – Rip It Up (1.01.10)
13. The Rezillos – No (1.06.47)
14. Aretha Franklin – Sisters Are Doing it For Themselves (1.09.35)
15. Erasure – A Little Respect (1.13.54)
16. Sly & the Family Stone – Que Sera Sera (1.22.43)
17. The Smiths – Please, Please, Please Let Me Get What I Want (1.27.59)
So, here we are on August 28th and I have neeeeearly made it through another Pale Imitation Festival. Nearly. We still have tonight’s awesome show with eagleowl, Ian Humberstone and Smackvan, and then the closing party on Saturday with PAWS, Halfrican and Et Tu Brute! and then I will sleep for a week, and lock the doors and the shutters to the house so I don’t have to speak to people until I am good and ready.
That sounds like a moan, and it is I suppose, but it doesn’t mean that I don’t love the festival we’ve put on. I’ve loved every gig so far, and I’m incredibly proud of how well it has all gone and how well it has all been received, it’s just that it’s kind of exhausting and rather gets in the way of all the other things I have to be doing at the moment. Anyone who does this kind of shit knows, I guess, it’s amazing but exhausting, and at the moment I am knackered.
Anyhow, I recently received a most excellent package from Norman Records of about five or so new albums, and a lot of them get a spin here. Oddly enough I had to go an buy the Wytches song on iTunes again because for all Heavenly sent me a download card with the album, there was no sign anywhere of where to actually redeem it, and I couldn’t find one on their site anywhere either. Weird. And of course the PR folk never sent me the album for review either so I’ve ended up buying an album I was asked to review, and then having to buy a song again just to play it on the damn podcast.
Still, they’re ten times more established and successful than we are, so I suppose in a way it’s sort of reassuring to see that they can still be just as hapless. Music would be pretty shit if it was all ruthlessly efficient people in charge.
Toadcast #304 – The Nearlycast by Song, By Toad on Mixcloud
01. Temple Songs – Sunspot Dandyline (00.20)
02. Michael Cera – Gershy’s Kiss (07.56)
03. Chad VanGaalen – Frozen Paradise (10.44)
04. Jonnie Common – Shark (18.31)
05. Eaten By Television – To Emma (25.40)
06. The Wytches – Wire Frame Mattress (31.29)
07. Los Angeles Police Department – Enough is Enough (36.54)
08. Old Earth – Some Gates’ll Swing Wide, For Us (38.47)
09. Beck – Morning (47.39)
10. The Eskimo Chain – Riding (57.37)
So, a little over halfway through the Pale Imitation Festival, and here we are. There are still four gigs to go, with Rick Redbeard, LAW, eagleowl and PAWS headlining (tickets and full details here), and the gigs are only a fiver to get into, which in Edinburgh in August represents a monumental fucking bargain.
We also have a new single out on Song, by Toad Records, from David Thomas Broughton and Juice Vocal Ensemble‘s new collaborative album Sliding the Same Way which is now available for pre-order so I’ve popped that on the playlist as well, along with a Passion Pusher song from our first cassette release which is due in October or November or something like that.
Other than that, there are a couple of new Scottish singles, some live gig plugs and a couple of Song, by Toad recording alumni with some bits and pieces, so it’s all quite local music for local people this week. Phew. I am finding the Festival heavy going, I have to confess. Not that I’m not enjoying it, just that it does kind of wear you out, not least with all the drinking. Still, my Mum turns up on Sunday, so that should at least put the dampers on some of the worst carrying-on. Hopefully.
Toadcast #303 – The Palercast by Song, By Toad on Mixcloud
01. Neon Waltz – Bare Wood Aisles (00.17)
02. Broken Records – So Long, So Late (06.37)
03. David Thomas Broughton & Juice Vocal Ensemble – In Service (12.41)
04. Numbers Are Futile – Justice is Light (and Blood) (18.37)
05. Sharron Kraus – When Father Hanged the Children (22.45)
06. Samantha Crain – Paint (30.50)
07. Sex Hands – Gay Marriage (36.07)
08. Ian Humberstone – House on the Hill (43.55)
09. PAWS – Poor Old Christopher Robin (Tape Demo) (46.11)
10. Passion Pusher – BLT (54.06)
11. eagleowl – Too Late in the Day (1.02.34)
Well as you can probably tell from the graphics and indeed also the title, this is going to just be one long plug for our August antics at the Pale Imitation Festival this year.
But, as you will hear me rattling on about, I suppose the label and the gigs are essentially the same as the blog really aren’t they, in that it’s basically just me having a massive tantrum that the entire world doesn’t completely agree with me about music. So in that sense plugging label releases and our live shows on here isn’t me compromising the integrity of the site, is it, it’s just an extension of the original purpose of the site in the first place isn’t it? ISN’T IT?
I hope so, anyway.
In any case, for those of you outside Edinburgh you can’t actually attend this festival but that won’t really matter because basically this is just a podcast full of absolutely fantastic Scottish bands, so for a change I am being Mr. Scotland tonight, although as you will hear, I’m not all that gracious about it!
Toadcast #302 – The Palecast by Song, By Toad on Mixcloud
01. Adam Stafford – Vanishing Tanks (00.22)
02. Le Thug – Paints (08.40)
03. Andrew R. Burns – Stinking Ship (16.19)
04. Sharptooth – Bonnie Blaze (19.22)
05. alansmithee – Snooze (26.07)
06. Deathcats – Danny Dyer (29.47)
07. Ian Humberstone – Ocean Paths to Palace (37.57)
08. LAW – Lilo (44.45)
09. Rick Redbeard – Dreams of the Trees (47.30)
10. Kitchen Cynics – When Father Hanged the Children (57.22)
11. Halfrican – I’m in L.U.V. (1.05.55)
12. PAWS – War Cry (1.07.04)