My iPod #28: Test Icicles – All You Need Is Blood

All You Need Is Blood! Get it? It’s almost like that Beatles song.

Test Icicles certainly weren’t the band who sounded like they were influenced by The Beatles. Again, they were a band, but unfortunately the music that made was not the music that they were particularly interested in. They formed in 2004, and later split two years later in 2006.

The album this track was released on ‘For Screening Purposes Only’, was released to positive praise on Halloween 2005. Test Icicles were the next biggest thing in dance-punk indie rock terms. Considered to be ‘bigger than The Beatles’ by NME and ‘all cobra’ by Pitchfork Media, the album indeed is very eccentric and filled to the brim with bursting energy, backed up with crazy guitars and a booming, yet pre-recorded, rhythm section.

My sister went through a period around 2005/06 when she started borrowing various albums from her friends. She borrowed this one.

Test Icicles had three main vocalists who all brought their own sound to the table. The main vocalist on this song is Devonte Hynes, though you may know him better as Lightspeed Champion. In fact, Hynes only sings this song and the mindfuck that is ‘Catch It!‘ Sam Mehran sings part of the chorus and pre-chorus too.

I don’t know what this song is about to be honest. You would have to listen to it for yourself to try and get something, but you don’t have to understand a song to enjoy it.

Look out for the backwards rap at the end of the song, also done by Sam Mehran.

If you want to know how the rap sounds like forwards, click here. That’s my video 😀

The song ends. Then, out of nowhere, a bass riff starts. Reminds you of Jaws doesn’t it? It hypnotises you, sets you in a real mysterious, foreboding mood. It leads right into the next song. That’s for another post.

Until next time.

Jamie.

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My iPod #27: Dananananaykroyd – All Us Authors

It is seven o’clock and you know what time it is!

So I’ve spent almost a month bleeding my heart out into these blogs, hoping that you like them and share them and whatever. It’s been quite fun.

If you are regularly viewing these posts and taking an interest in what I say, then I thank you very much. It would be silly to say that I expected more than 100 views a day. But that is what I thought I would be getting. The blog with the highest views is my third one, and that only has about 30.

I should probably understand that it takes a slow process to become popular. This isn’t like YouTube where you can just upload one thing and then suddenly get millions of views. I believe that blog sites are much more respectable, and certainly more peaceful. I would be happy with one sensible comment than with a tirade of those which don’t make any sense or annoy me to no end.

So, about the song. ‘All Us Authors’ is the second track of the band Danananananaykroyd’s second album, ‘There Is a Way’. That album was their last. Released in June 2011, they split up a few months after in November.

I was like a deer caught in headlights when it came to ‘There Is a Way’.  I think it was the day after I had finished my last exam for my GCSEs. A year of highs and hard work, I could forget everything that I had revised. I could stay in bed for ages, and not worry about anything until August. It was a good time to be alive.

I woke up about seven in the morning to tune into Channel 4 and watch the daily music programme ‘Freshly Squeezed’. That show’s not on anymore and understandably so, it got incredibly dull and I doubt that anyone really watched it at that time of day after The Hoobs had just finished.

Anyway, it was then that the show played the band’s new single, ‘Muscle Memory’, which led me to think “Shit! They have a new album, no way. Huh! I have to download it.”

I was already a fan of the band after listening to their debut “Hey Everyone!”. I’ll probably go into more depth on that in another post.

So, I downloaded it and listened to it the whole way through. Initially, this song was one that stuck in my mind. Maybe it was because of the unorthodox time signature in the verses, (10/4 I think), and the chorus, “Just when you got comfy”, which is firstly sung in the song, and then repeatedly yelled at the ending. It’s the second shortest song on the album, and for me was the first that sounded like a song that could have been released on their first album.

I can remember listening to the album and thinking that the band sounded much more fuller. Originally, the band made use of two drumkits in the songs on their first album, but the co-lead singer (who played one of those drums) broke his arm in two places during a gig and had to retire from that post. Also, they had a female bassist who left during the years between the two releases and was eventually replaced. The ‘fuller sound’ might have also been a result of their use of producer Ross Robinson, who has worked with bands ranging from The Cure to Korn.

‘There Is a Way’ is one of my favourite albums, and it’s a shame that the band split when they did. I feel that they could have achieved so much more, with just one more release! Ohhhhhh. People say the third album’s always the best right? Or third time’s a charm? Whatever. It’s just so energetic, the only time that there is time for a rest is in a minute long recording of a street after the song ‘Time Capsule’. That will also come in another blog. That’s won’t be on here anytime soon.

Until next time.

Jamie.

My iPod #26: The Rakes – All Too Human

Hello everybody.

The Rakes were an indie band that broke up in 2009 after the release of their album ‘Klang’.

Again I was introduced to them by MTV2. I’ve said many a time that MTV2 was a great channel to watch back in 2005-2006. Without it I definitely wouldn’t be as ecelectic as I am in my musical tastes, if I do say so myself.

The Rakes released their debut album ‘Capture/Release’ in August 2005, and originally this song wasn’t on it. It was only when they released it as a standalone single the following year, that the band decided to re-release the album with ‘All Too Human’ listed as the final track.

The video premiered on MTV2 as part of its ‘New Releases’. I haven’t actually watched it in a long time, so I can’t really remember what’s happens. From its thumbnail, I can see that it’s black and white.

The song itself is very good in my own bias opinion. The narrator has been in a relationship that is failing in front of his eyes, and he’s now pining with self-pity. He knows that she would be fine without him, but knowing this makes him feel even worse.

However morose and depressing that sounds, the key and the melody has a very light tone. The ending of the song  uses vocals from all members of the band chanting ‘Human, All Too Human’, providing a satisfying conclusion to the song and the album.

‘Capture/Release’ received quite a bit of praise on its release, so if you’re into Arctic Monkeys, The Futureheads, Bloc Party – bands like that, you might like the album.

Want to listen to more songs by them? Here are three.

Until next time.

Jamie.

My iPod #25: George Harrison – All Those Years Ago

What’s up.

It’s another George Harrison song, and coincidentally it’s another song about death. Sorry to put it so bluntly, I don’t want to sound like a jerk.

Originally, ‘All Those Years Ago’ was written for Ringo Starr to sing. Harrison had already aided Starr with his songwriting, the songs ‘Photograph‘ and ‘It Don’t Come Easy‘ were written by both. The latter’s demo version was sung by Harrison himself.

Starr couldn’t reach the high notes of the song. Apparently, he didn’t like the lyrics either. Then, on a cold winter night in December 1980, John Lennon died.

Therefore, Harrison made it into a tribute – dedicated to his friend and colleague. It’s a beautiful song, with lyrics depicting a brother in awe of his elder. Subtle references to Lennon’s life and music can be found in them too, and to top it off you only have Paul McCartney playing the bass, Ringo on the drums, Linda McCartney and Denny Laine on backing vocals and George Martin as the producer. Although, that last one is argued to just be added for effect.

All in all, it’s pretty sad. The song was written after a devastating and painful time, but it’s played in a way that makes you want to remember the good times in the past.

The songs I’ve put up on here have been quite depressing lately. Let’s hope for a bright one tomorrow.

Until next time.

Jamie.

My iPod #24: George Harrison – All Things Must Pass

Hello again.

So… the year is 2010. The Beatles: Rock Band had been released on the 9th September 2009, and I was already Beatles crazy, if you want more information see Across the Universe.

By the year 2010 started, I had downloaded Sgt. Pepper, Revolver, Abbey Road and Let It Be. I then went on to download more of their albums as the year progressed.

I received The Beatles: Rock Band as a present for Christmas 2009. I originally wanted my cousin to get it for me, so when my mum, sister and I went to her house, I would know what what be in that huge box covered in wrapping paper. It turned out she wasn’t able to get it. She did, however, get me a Sgt. Pepper mug. I didn’t want a mug. I wanted The Beatles Rock Baaaaaaaand 😦 Of course I couldn’t complain to her. I was still quite depressed though.

My mum got it for me instead. It was the limited edition, with the postcards, the drums with the Beatles skin, and the Hofner controller. It was happy times, I played almost every day the first week I got it.

I had no friends to play with though. Not a lot of people in my school had a Wii….. or cared about The Beatles. Yes, I did get the Wii version. But only because I didn’t have a PS3 or XBox at the time.

I have a PS3 now. If anyone wants to add me, my PSN is ‘Kyei-ManJamie’ 😀

I’ve been going on for quite a while now. I am going to tell you why the song is on my iPod. All in due time.

I probably searched for ‘The Beatles: Rock Band’ in Google one day, because I found the Rock Band Forums which had its own TBRB sub-forum. I joined that shit, and spoke with everyone about how much I loved the game.

One particular thread that caught my eye was the Community Mash-up album thread, I am the member ‘jamzftw’ by the way, and basically it was just an fan album influenced by ‘LOVE‘, the soundtrack album released in 2006.

This will probably be my longest blog.

So, to put things short, that album was completed and I practically went on a one man mission to complete the second.

At that point I was into The Beatles music, and their solo efforts too.

Before I knew Spotify existed, I used we7.com to stream my music for free. I had ‘Imagine’ and ‘John Lennon/Plastic Ono Band’ already on the computer, and I found out that ‘All Things Must Pass’, George Harrison’s cathartic debut release, was the highest-selling out of all the ex-Beatles members.

What an album it is. It has so many great songs, ranging from large-‘stadium’ rockers e.g. Wah-Wah to gospel-churchy efforts e.g. Awaiting on You All. It must have been a relief for Harrison to get all his material out after years of being overshadowed by Lennon/McCartney. It absolutely deserves the five star, 10/10 reviews that it got in 1970 and the continued praise it receives today.

‘All Things Must Pass’ is a very hopeful song about death. Don’t look at death with a sense of foreboding, when it’s time to go…. it’s time to go. Don’t be scared. Sunrise doesn’t last all morning. A cloud burst doesn;t last all day. It’s not always going to be this grey. All Things Must Pass away.

R.I.P. George Harrison

Until next time.

Jamie.

NOW FOR SOMETHING COMPLETELY DIFFERENT!

The Strokes new album ‘Comedown Machine’ is released next week.

It is available to stream on Pitchfork Media.

I listened to it earlier today.

I also have to say, if you aren’t a fan of ‘Angles’ then you probably won’t be much a fan of this new album. You could probably label it as ‘Angles Part II’.

When ‘One Way Trigger‘ first came out earlier this year, I wasn’t really into it. Listening to it again today, I still couldn’t bear to hear Julian Casablancas’ falsetto vocals. It’s just not something that suits him.

Then ‘All the Time‘ was released around Valentine’s Day, and that was the one where I thought, ‘Yeah! This is good! It’s like old Strokes blah blah blah.’ It was like how ‘Under Cover of Darkness’ went down with almost everyone. ‘All the Time’ just sounds more Strokes-y to me.

However, people who want that old Strokes sound back will probably be waiting for an eternity. Yes ‘Is This It’ and ‘Room on Fire’ are albums that can’t be beat. But that was ten-twelve years ago, dudes.

The Strokes have changed their sound and will probably continue to carry on changing it for years to come. We will all have to face this fact. Besides, we should take this album into open arms, cradle it, share it with friends. Strokes fan should appreciate it. I am a Strokes fan, I’ve only listened to it once. Who knows? It may just be my new favourite after another listen. Maybe.

I bet their next album will be released early days of 2016.

Until next, next time.

Jamie.

My iPod #23: Green Day – All the Time

Evening all.

I downloaded ‘Nimrod’ back in 2010. That was the year that the band had their own ‘Rock Band‘ game dedicated to them. No one probably plays that game anymore, seeing as you could export all the songs into the normal Rock Band games anyway. However, it was a sight to behold Billie Joe, Mike and Tré all cartoon form, showing their change in appearances from the Dookie era, to American Idiot, and finally to 21st Century Breakdown.

Again, ‘All the Time’ isn’t probably the most memorable song that people will remember from Nimrod. There’s probably one good reason for that. The album itself was the one that began their movement from three-chord punk rock songs to songs which, I guess, carried a deeper meaning to them. They were becoming mature. Eww.

Although the song wouldn’t have found itself on Dookie, nor definitely Insomniac, ‘All the Time’ seems the closest on the album that could have been written in those recording sessions. If ‘Haushinka‘ was considered for Dookie, ‘All the Time’ certainly could have been.

The song’s overall message? Time goes fast.

That’s the song for the day. Hope you enjoyed it 🙂

Until next time.

Jamie.

My iPod #22: Blink-182 – All the Small Things

Well… shit. Late for two days in a row? I’m sorry. Almost half past nine GMT too? Oh damn.

I apologise. I went out with my friends to Leicester Square today. One of them turned 18 on Wednesday, so we celebrated by going to the cinema, watching ‘Side Effects’ starring Jude Law and Rooney Mara, stuffing our faces at ‘Planet Hollywood’ and finally watching a dance act outside Picadilly Circus Station whilst making fun out of them.

‘Side Effects’ was good. It kinda dragged on for a bit, but I do recommend it for fans of Jude Law and those into psychiatric stuff.

‘All the Small Theeengs’, as sung by Tom DeLonge, was released as the second single from their ‘breakthrough’ album ‘Enema of the State’.

I can’t really say much, I’ve heard it for years and years, you’ve probably all heard it for years and years. Jedward then butchered it a few years ago, but no one cares about them anymore so don’t even try and look for that cover.

It’s just a love song really, it was made to be a song for the radio, and for good reason. Who can’t resist singing to the ‘Na-na, na-na, na-na, na-nanana’ chorus, or just generally making out during the song. You can’t stop that. It’s just instinct. It’s a very nice song, you can’t be angry whilst listening it.

If you want a girlfriend you could probably just play this song for her, then she’s allllll yours. Guaranteed. Coming from someone who doesn’t have one right here.

Mark Hoppus met his wife during the making of the video for the song, so that’s saying something right?

Until next time.

Jamie.