Song, by Toad

Posts tagged fiery furnaces

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Friday Has a Surprisingly Free Schedule

 Not of course, given the business I work in, like I can’t fill it up to the brim again in a second of course. I mean, there’s the Rob St. John and Ian Humberstone as well as the All Creatures Will Make Merry vinyl artwork to finalise of course.  But that can, realistically, wait until Monday.  I think.

So that leaves me with tomorrow and nothing to do but hang out with Mrs. Toad.  The house has been so hectic with guests, and with the Festival August might well be worse, that at least one day to spend just by ourselves will be a bloody relief.

Then on Sunday I am pottering through to Glasgow for Jonnie Common’s album launch. His new record Master of None was within a whisker of being on Song, by Toad Records actually, but we didn’t move fast enough (damn you holidays!) and also didn’t really have the money to press vinyl either.  Also the record label who did end up releasing – Manchester’s Red Deer Club – are one of the best indies around and Dunk Le Chunk, who runs the label, has been one of Jonnie’s staunchest supporters from back in the days of Down the Tiny Steps, so it is rather fitting that they release his debut album.

And as much as I would have liked to have the record on Song, by Toad Records, I’d rather anyone else release it if it means I get to have a copy on vinyl.  Fookin’ lovely!  Anyway, yes, The Captain’s Rest in Glasgow this Sunday if you fancy some superlative musicfuns.

1. Which bird looks the most evil?
2. Which sea creature looks the most benign?
3. Name your death metal band.
4. Best use of an animal in a film…
5. …and the worst.

Five songs from a boisterous compilation I made in the Winter about umm… six years ago is it now?

Franz Ferdinand – Darts of Pleasure

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The Von Bondies – No Regrets

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British Sea Power – Apologies to Insect Life

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The Detroit Cobras – Ya Ya Ya (Looking For My Baby)

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The Fiery Furnaces – Crystal Clear

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Friday Fancies a Snooze

Hooray, it’s my fucking birthday.  Whoop-de-fucking-doo.  The thing is, I genuinely don’t care about birthdays, either in a positive or a negative sense, but Facebook and birthdays are an ungodly fucking combination, really they are.

“Yo, happy birthday dude.”  “Hey man, have a good one.”  Fuck off!  If you really, truly care then at least buy me something expensive, and if you don’t care enough to do that, which you shouldn’t, then let’s just drop all the shallow platitudes shall we. I don’t care about my birthday, so there’s no need for you to pretend to.

Can you tell I’m tired?

Last night was brilliant.  The Scottish Enlightenment were fucking awesome and the New Music Innovation thingy in Glasgow was surprisingly interesting.  The thing is, it was the third night out on the lash in a row for me, so by the time I stumbled back from Haymarket to our house I was pretty clapped out.  My legs ache this morning.  How does a hangover and a lack of sleep make your legs ache?

So, I am considering a late afternoon nap before I go and play fives and then head out to the Wark to kick my liver while it’s well and truly down.  Bit of a run around, nice tea, lots of beer.  Consider the weekend launched!

1. Most obscure member of your family who consistently remembers your birthday.
2. Coolest childhood birthday party moment you can remember.
3. Biggest birthday trouble you’ve been in.
4. At which gig have you felt either much, much too young or much, much too old?
5. Do you prefer birthdays or Christmas (or Thanksgiving, Easter or Whitsun if you want).

The five songs are from Uncut’s Best of 2003 covermount compilation.

Hamell on Trial – Oughta Go Round

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Paul Westerberg – Crackle & Drag

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Willard Grant Conspiracy – Soft Hand

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The Handsome Family – Far From any Road

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The Fiery Furnaces – Two Fat Feet

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Feel Frisky, it’s Friday

Haider is Dead!

Well well, what a momentous week it’s been. Some brown fellow won an election in a trivial Chinese client state somewhere in the former British colonies, but far more importantly Glasgow Celtic managed a very creditable draw against Manchester United in the Champions’ League despite not actually passing the ball to one another more than half a dozen times during the entire ninety minutes. Momentous, I tell you. What a day for Scotland.

Snigger. Sorry, that was mean.

No, what I really meant was that it’s about time our side started winning elections again. There was a rash of lefty wins in the mid-nineties as Clinton and Blair won, accompanied by similar successes in France and Germany by Chirac and Schroeder. I know ‘lefty wins’ is not really the picture in retrospect, but at the time it seemed like social-democrats were winning all over the place. It’s odd, then, that as America finally shakes off the governance of fear and insularity, some of us in Europe seem rather worryingly to be embracing it: Sarkozy is a right-wing nutjob, and the Austrians have basically elected the Nazi Party. Cameron may be in a position of some strength in the UK, but he’s really far too wet and insubstantial to be considered much of anything, not that this can really be described as a good thing.

I know it’s going to take a different kind of politics to deal with the rise of the Indians and, particularly, the Chinese, who don’t seem to give a shit about anyone but themselves, but I am not sure nationalistic jingoism is quite the solution. We’ll see though.

And how about next week we try and make the prevailing topics of conversation a little lighter in tone, eh? We’ve had cultural witch hunts and dramatic elections these last two weeks, and it would be nice to get to the end of the week with nothing more grave than titties and beer on my mind, for a change.

So de-lurk, come out of the shadows, say hello and join in. And if you want to pick next Friday’s five, then email me with your picks – details on the Contact page.

1. Favourite U.S. state name.
2. First tipple of the evening.
3. Last tipple of the evening.
4. Blonde, brunette or redhead?
5. Nicest looking alphabet, with link if you can.
5 and a half. Can anyone identify that picture? Bonus points if you can.

Weddings, Parties, Anything – Father’s Day (Live)
Joe Cocker – Hitchcock Railway
Liz Green – Bad Medicine
The Fiery Furnaces – Single Again
Giant Sand – Red Right Hand

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Toadcast #40 – The Birthcast

Toadcast

Hello people, more podcastenfun once again.  Having done the Deathcast recently, I thought it might be nice to do the polar opposite – the Birthcast.  This week’s podcast is all about the birth of Song, by Toad.  I’ll tell you about how I started writing about music, how I discovered blogs, how I discovered that what I was writing was in fact a blog and how I ultimately ended up on WordPress writing what you are now reading.  r casually skimming over, depending on your bent.

It has also ended up being something of a 2004 retrospective, because that’s when this all started, however slowly, and that side of it has been nice.  I had met Mrs. Toad by this point, and I was all excited, and despite the fact that my job was bollocks, living in London was great fun.  I was on a narrowboat at Nine Elms Pier at this point, which was an amazingly brilliant place to live, and I used to cook myself kettle noodles because I couldn’t be arsed firing up the stove.  I’d boil some water, throw it over some noodles and some stock and chuck in lots of fresh veg – bloody delicious.

Toadcast #40 – The Birthcast

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01. Modest Mouse – Bury Me With It (01.39)
02. The Fiery Furnaces – Chris Matthews (07.57)
03. The Innocence Mission – I Have Not Seen This Day Before (Live) (17.54)
04. American Music Club – Only Love Can Set You Free (22.57)
05. Brian Wilson – Cabin Essence (28.40)
06. Andrew Bird – Lull (35.30)
07. Jim White – Static on the Radio (42.52)
08. Tom Waits – Trampled Rose (49.09)
09. The Dears – Lost in the Plot (54.36)
10. Giant Sand – Anarchistic Bolshevistic Cowboy Bundle (59.43)

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Fudge Yourself Five Ways From Friday

Tantrum!

In order to get into a good mood for this weekend, how about some reasonably good news from the European Parliament? This recent vote slaps down the recent threats by ISPs to simply disonnect people accused of naughty file-sharing. The joy of this is not that I am necessarily in favour of completely unrestricted file-sharing of any and everything, but that if you are going to threaten something as drastic, in the 21st Century, as cutting off someone’s internet access then you had better have some independent oversight of this kind of decision. Law enforcement, basically, should be performed by law enforcement agencies, not by ISPs at the behest of the companies who give them most of their high value content.

It’s weird, here in Europe we seem to be stuck in between the Mercans and the Middle East at the moment, with moves like the one above which come dangerously close to mimicking the dangerous American taste for completely unaccountable law enforcement, which basically means no law at all. The on the other side, we’ve got the crazies in the Middle East trying to get the Declaration of Human Rights to include fucking idiotic clauses that state that it is a violation of someone’s human rights to have their religious sensibilities. Without wishing to offend anyone’s religious sensibilities, fuck you, fuck your infantile fairytales, and fuck right off and snivel yourself to sleep in the dark of your bedroom, coddled in your childish fantasies that we have some sort of privileged places in the universe, that anyone gives a fuck about your fucking feelings and that you won’t die and rot like every other living thing on Earth. You fucking baby.

I give the Americans a hard time over their dismantling of the rule of law in their own country, something we dismayingly seem to be trying to mimic on our side of the pond, but honestly, their freedom of speech laws, and specifically the First Amendment, would be very, very welcome in amongst all this craziness. I am reminded of the quote from legal scholar Ronald Dworkin: “the only right you don’t have in a democracy is the right not to be offended”. Quite. Fucking. So.

Anyway, it’s Friday, and we are having a half day here at Proper Job in order to go out for a meal this afternoon and then get biblically rat-arsed in the evening. So Izzy, if you’re reading this, beware of dribbling design engineers stumbling about your pub at about eight o’clock. Feel free to sling us all out – we’ll probably deserve it.

So without further ado, here’s your Five for Friday.  Please take the opportunity, and try and treat the subject matter with some creativity – calling Christians a bunch of cunts isn’t very imaginative:

1. Cause some religious offence.
2. Cause some political offence.
3. Cause some musical offence.
4. Cause some national offence.
5. Cause some cultural offence.

That should do it – jihad by Saturday.

Tom Lehrer – National Brotherhood Week
Yukon – Sweden
Slow Club – Apples & Pairs
Yo La Tengo – Little Eyes
The Fiery Furnaces – Inca Rag/Name Game