heard on the wire

Great like expectations

Frankie Machine

“Looking back it was romantic but at the time I was suffering” sounds like the opening line from a novel, not the title of a charming debut LP from Denver, Colorado.

The Kissing Party are five men and women with guitars and tunes, which in this part of the world counts for a lot. As, on occasion, does brevity.

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And the bells were ringing out


A consensus appears to have been reached, if my Facebook and Twitter timelines are at–all reliable indicators, that Kirtsy MacColl and The Pogues’ Fairytale of New York is the greatest of Christmas songs.

As I’ve mentioned before, this blog’s holiday affections lie elsewhere, but we can only be happy that the season’s airwaves are more likely to be filled—and I’m not being sarcastic here—by Shane MacGowan’s beautiful voice than the tuneless drone of the Richard.

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Don’t change a hair for me

Freiwillige Selbstkontrolle is both the German system for film classification and a German band whose commendable lack of chart success spans almost 30 years.

Discovered, in the UK at least, by John Peel, they scored a festive fifty hit with I Wish I Could Sprechen Sie Deutsch in 1986 and that was all I heard of them until 2004’s First Take Then Shake LP, by which time they’d truncated their name to FSK.

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Day 10 — a song that makes me sleep

I don’t generally go to sleep with music on, but if I do then only Frank Sinatra will do.

You can keep My Way and Strangers in the Night, I don’t mean the mobbed-up, past it, sixties Frank, the man who taught Tom Jones the art of shouting in tune.

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