singles by choice
(albums when it's necessary)
11 September 2006
(listening through speakers)Linn LP12
Linn Ittok LVII
Linn Arkiv
TAG McLaren CDT20R / Chord DAC64
TEAD Microgroove Plus
Linn Kairn
Linn LK140 (x3)
Linn Espek

We all know there’s nothing new under the Sun. What’s the point of making new music, or any art at all, when someone’s bound to already have done it? Sometimes though, you hear something that hasn’t been done before. This, for instance. It’s an odd mish-mash of counting, pianos and god knows what else. The b-side goes further, throwing together stadium noise, airy French singing can’t-sit-still drums, and (I think) a Talking Heads sample to make something which sounds so simple that you can’t believe no one did it first.

4

Keith can be a person, a town, a football club, and now, even a band. There is no stopping Keith. This Keith does all the others proud with good songs, Happy Mondayish piano, and a great bass sound.

3

The surroundings in which you hear music can make a big difference to how you interpret it. I just played this on a Monday afternoon, sitting on my big settee with a cup of tea, through the kind of stereo most people would find extravagant. And it was crap. Boring. Did nothing. Angsty angular indie does nothing for me, and I keep (accidentally) buying it. In a small club it’s probably different, but at La Maison de Cassingle we’ve got bigger things to worry about. Finish your degrees, get jobs, vanish.

2

Whatever the heck that means.

As Mark E Smith said “The three ‘R’s - repetition, repetition and repetition”. Noise, noise noise. With repetitive electronic noise. So, obviously, pretty good, even though they probably are too old to be doing this kind of thing. Side-b recalls rooting through a Moroccan bottle bank whilst playing the didgeridoo. Oh, on acid, obviously.

3

Is Helen Love the name of the band or the person? File under “H” or “L”? Maybe, like PJ Harvey, they were a band to start with, and now are just a person. I don’t know. My loosely alphabetised singles have H-L in the same set of shelves, so I don’t lose (much) sleep over it. For the sake of argument, let’s say Helen Love is the name of the band. Okay?

On the annoyingly low-rpm b-side, Helen Love revisit one of their old songs. The “witty” reader may observe they’ve been doing this since the second single. If it ain’t broke, they say, don’t fix it. The problem with Helen Love, though, has always been that it breaks pretty much every other record. The last one was really good; this one isn’t. Roll on the next one.

2

Top marks for the sleeve and for the title, but the music is pretty middling punk. Kind of like that rubbish in which Damaged Goods used to excel - The Snivelling Shits, that “shirts off” thing. Stuff like that. Suitably angry, but not as good as that Rotters thing from last week.

3