Our apologies, dear readers, for our lack of content, craft and production for too long now. We are happy to announce a return to form at Musical Tears. We have some very interesting articles lined up…
Firstly, there will be a review round-up of the best new albums according to the critics. We are also going to start hosting some ‘classic’ music journalism, straight out of the vaults of history. Writers such as Nick Kent, Lester Bangs and even Hunter S. Thompson will be featured. The first two are remembered for their articles contributing to music journalism, the last for his contributions to journalism, counter-culture and politics in large.
We will be hosting these articles for you; they display a type of journalism that frankly, has been lost. This is partly due to the internet, the nature of journalism and the ever shortening attention spans of the 21st century public. Rock journalism used to be an obsessive affair; with long, detailed articles that take you to the heart of the music, that place you right into the centre of the action; right there with the band. These articles are usually highly entertaining as well.
We are sure there is still a market for these articles. We hope, dear readers you enjoy the fruits of our labour. The Hunter S. Thompson article is dedicated to the memory of Muhammed Ali, with his recent passing. It does not have much bearing on music, but alongside the article we will post songs that defined the age in which Muhammed was fighting, songs that were related to his struggle, his time and of course his ‘greatness’.
For now though, here are a couple of tracks we have been enjoying lately, and make sure to check back soon, as there are plenty more articles soon to be posted.
We have been a fan of Burial for a long time. Untrue was one of the defining albums of 2007. When the mood is right, and you’re in for a long-night-of-the-soul, or you’re just driving the deserted streets at night – especially city streets, Burial makes for haunting, majestic listening. Anyway, somehow this song completely missed our radar, but thank god we found it. It’s stunning. Like finding a long-lost friend. Its incredibly beautiful.
This is also a nice track that we’ve been liking;
Finally, we have been listening to The Clash in abundance. One of us in the office purchased a 2nd hand boxset Clash on Broadway. It’s fucking fantastic. Here’s one from our youth:
More on The Clash soon…
One for shits and giggles:
By the Doc
Here at Tears we were shocked and surprised to discover that two years have passed since we launched. Since that time we have enjoyed a plethora of tunes; we have indulged in the highly erratic and trigger-happy lifestyles of music journalists – especially in regards to the late Tornado Rodgekums, of whom we still don’t know the exact details of his death, but we will say that he was a truly honourable man and a pig farm is no place for a piss-up if you’re holding a shotgun and wearing a leotard (considering the pigs hadn’t been fed for days it was a known certainty what was going to happen…) – but most of all we have seen there is still great music all about us and flowing through everyone of us. Whether you are a casual listener, a record producer, musician, DJ disseminating the latest tracks, or just the average joe who likes to blast radio one down the motorway; we are all touched by the brilliance of music – the visceral, beatific beauty of melodies that makes our heart beat faster, our spine-tingle and our head swim in an ocean of dopamine, we are glad to share our love of music with you.
So to crack on after that euphoria-tainted introduction (not currently under the influence of ecstasy – other mind-altering substances are available), what have we got to keep our dear readers enticed?
Well we must admit we have been lazy for awhile now, and our posts have been deteriorating. We will set to amend this asap, but also have new categories and subjects, some of which will be recurring. The review round-up is coming back with a blast. Watch this space. We’ll have interviews, monologues and myths. They’ll be plenty of new music, we’re gonna keep our ears to the street moreso than ever. And there will be new things; we are looking at doing some music book reviews and incorporating classic journalism into our blog. What I mean by this is, music journalism has changed rapidly over the years. As peoples attention spans have waned, the journalism became more action-packed, concise and packaged. In the heydays of Led Zep, rock journalism was long, detailed to the point of obsession and was almost a journey. We are going to be reprising some of that for those of you who like a long read to enjoy. It may take longer to read, but it’ll be so much more rewarding. Lester Bangs will be here soon…
We’re also gonna have some reposts of our favourite articles from the past few years. We have to feature a Tornado one after all.
So let’s air some new music for you all to enjoy, and take away the monday/tuesday blues…
(New music will also relate to new music to our ears, but is from the past, if that makes any sense?!)
Enjoying this lady generally, but nice mix,
These guys are just great, check out their session for KEXP here ;
Loving the new Beirut album;
Till next time, keep your heads in the mean time.
By Tom Proctor
We’ve been a big fan of Uncut here at Musical Tears for awhile; good band bio’s, interviews, wide breadth of reviews and a passion for uncovering forgotten gems.
John Mulvey is one of their writers. He works intrepidly hard to find esoteric, little-known nuggets of joy, that we have appreciated greatly. He truly is one of the old school – no doubt devouring endless record stores for those rare oddities, and now of course with the advent of the internet, such mining can be done online. Just as with record store mining, the process is slow and arduous, taking lots of patience and the ability to sift through much crap – but the feeling of finding a rare beauty just as rewarding.
John turned us on to aquariumdrunkard – fantastic name, fantastic blog. Straight out of L.A it has great articles and a backbone of gorgeous sumptuous tunes, many of the funk/soul styling. Check out the mixtapes.
Recently, John has written a best of 2015 so far. Makes for a great read. We especially dug Aye Aye, who we’d never heard of. The song below is a screeching mesh of over-amped guitars and a spiralling harmonica line. Its ferocious – of those that have seen the new Mad Max, imagine if the guy chained to the amps with the flame-thrower also had a high-powered harmonica…
Enjoy the song and keep on keepin’ turned on… (also check out Uncut)
By Tom Proctor
Here is a post about poetry, complimented by music. The poetry was not written by me, that talent is a rare thing. These are songs that either relate or do not relate to the poetry; more than that they are songs worthy of a listen.
I took a break from writing about the dead
and drinking from writing about the dead
to walk around my childhood neighborhood.
Everything’s for rent. Or for sale, for ten
times the amount it’s worth.
Palm trees are planted in front of a mural
of palm trees under the Ocean Park Bridge.
In the painting, the metal horses of a carousel are breaking
free and running down the beach. Why didn’t I leave
my initials in cement
in front of my parent’s apartment in the eighties?
Nikki had the right idea in ’79.
I walk by a basketball court, where men play
under the florescent butts of night’s cigarette.
I could have been any of their wives,
at home, filling different rooms in different houses
with hopeful wombs. Agreeing on paint color
samples with their mothers in mind.
I’ll bet their wives let their cats go out
hunting at night like premonitions of future sons.
They will worry, stare out the front window,
pray that privilege doesn’t bring home bad news
like some wilted head of a black girl in nascent jaws.
To say nothing of the owl who’s been here for years. I hear him
when I’m trying to write about the deaths I’ve admired.
I hear him when the clothed me no longer recognizes
the naked. I hear him while writing and shitting and sleeping
where my mother’s seven guitars sleep.
I hear him in my parent’s house,
their walls covered in my many faces,
traces of decades of complacence.
My childhood neighborhood is a shrine to my success,
and I’m a car with a bomb inside, ready
to pull up in front of it and stop
Nice poetry and nice beats, soon to be up on the blog, more review round-ups and a post from the sweaty recesses of Northern Africa.
By Tom Proctor
So Musical Tears has been enjoying light listening treats recently, gentle melodies make for a good antidote to the winter blues. At times though the opposite seems true, a good antidote can in fact be the blues. That’s right, occasionally we wallow in the sadness, in a self-flagellating act of guilty pleasure, where all we need to hear is the stripped back sound of a man with a booming voice – tinted with melancholy by years of labour in cornfields – a guitar and a bottle of whiskey. We do stereotypes here at Musical Tears very well!
And with that rather idiosyncratically oxymoronic start to the post, let’s delve into the music:
BBC’s flagship music radio is a rich resource of music and we caught ourself listening to Cery Matthew’s softly spoken show today, which featured some lo-fi beauties. A slightly absurd track which caught our ears, was Go To The Mardi Gras by a crazy cat called Professor Longhair, a piano player from New Orleans. With the look of a tame George Clinton, his style is off-beat & whacky, with this song featuring whistling, frantic piano playing & soft pitter-patter drumming. Zulu Queen’s are mentioned and the song stands as a testament to the variety and madness at the beating heart of New Orleans’s most famous tradition.
Another song we’ve been enjoying is Joe Strummer’s first band, the pub rock outfit The 101ers. The track Keys to Your Heart – is a good place to start if you’re interested in Strummer’s pre-Clash days. It lacks the trademark ferocity of The Clash, but still has a catchy hook, chorus and a beating pulse. Strummer’s voice breaks through angsty as ever, softened both by the “keys keys” harmonious chant of the chorus and the subject matter; finding the keys to his muse’s heart has lead to salvation, where once he was a drug-taker and considering becoming n undertaker, he is now free. We especially like the jingle jangle of keys that Strummer throws in half-way through.
If you tend to ward off the winter blues by locking yourself in a room, screaming at the walls with a bit of thrash on your radio a la Toby Maguire, then head to The Daily Tune, run by our friend and collaborator Mike Armstrong.
So however you are spending your winter time, try not to let all the darker days and work infuriation’s boil over until you look like good ol Toby here. Instead, enjoy all the wonderful array of music this planet keeps on offering us, wherever you find it. But the best place to look, of course, is this website.
By Tom Proctor
Merry Christmas, Merry Christmas, Kiss Myself, Kiss Himself, Kiss Herself, Kiss Yourself, Happy Hanukkah!
So Happy New Year, glad tiding’s and all such proclamations of happiness et al.
The staff at Musical Tears have all been rampant busy over the Yuletide season, with this reporter scurrying off to the Alps in a desperate attempt to see snow (it worked – hurrah!) So it was plenty of blonde biere – which after two is quite enough – mountain air, street jazz bands, and an abundance of skiing, with a little towel and sauna thrown in for good measure. Overall, good times were had, with the exceptions of a few run-ins with mad waiters – fists and belts almost went crashing along with glasses and menus. Ahh French customer service always has its perks. Saying that though, all the French people we met on New Year’s were fantastic fun & brilliant host’s.
From good news to awful, and I’m sorry to say, Tornado Rudgekums has died. We’ll hold a candle for him this Year. It’s saddened us all at Musical Tears. We’re grave without him. We wil be showcasing some of his best work, retrospectively. He went out in grand style, fighting in his own way. We’re proud of the way he went out, as I’m sure he was. His obituary is currently being written up on the Darwin Awards. They called him James to spare him his awful name.
With tragedy also comes a moment to cherish, Shwartz Shafter has had a baby boy. He’s named him Shwartz M. II (junior). He’s a lovable kid, with big droopy eyes. One day no doubt he’ll have a moustache to rival his dad’s!
So, now, down to the nitty gritty we’ve all been waiting for. What’s been hitting our jukeboxes thus far in the early days of 2014? Well plenty of things, and there’s plenty to be discussed and shared as always. But we’ll start with some classy tunes, that need no more introduction than give them a go, dive in and enjoy. We hope you’ll find them irresistible!
Sounding like the missing track from the soundtrack of Easy Rider, kicking stuff off is Of Montreal.
Again, sounding like something from a bygone era, Foxygen:
This track we cannot stop playing, it’s so rhythmical, groovy with splashes of piano… yummy, dulcet doesn’t even begin to describe, (it’s a typo – should be elope, not etope)
Now for some world, with the man from Colombia;
And lastly, something a little more modern: