Monday, October 29, 2012

The Bell - Post War Years

There's a couple of good pop, dance and indie songs out this week in Ireland and the UK. One of this week's new releases is The Bell by Post War Years. The Bell is part of their four track E.P., the other three tracks are Boing, Ghosts and Pigeon. The Bell EP can be purchased on ITunes here

The video for The Bell is really gorgeous and is directed by Tobias Stretch who also directed the videos for All Eyes and Glass House.

Post War Years are on Facebook here and are on Twitter @PostWarYears

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Au Seve - Julio Bashmore

Au Seve by Julio Basmore has been on line since last May and this week is in the top 75 of the  ITunes charts and climbing thanks partly to it being Nick Grimshaw's record of the week on his BBC Radio 1 breakfast show. This is real old school house. Great to see. Julio has a headline show at a secret location in London on November 23rd and tickets are available on a link on his facebook page  here

Friday, October 19, 2012

Something New -The return of Girls Aloud

Girls Aloud announced the news of their new tour and greatest hits album today. They will play Dublin's O2 music venue on March 16th. Their second greatest hits album will include four new songs and there will also be a special edition album featuring songs chosen by the fans. 

I'm loving the whole look of the comeback from the build up on their website that started ten days ago to the colour and sheer glamour of how the new re-launch website looks. Their new single is Something New and I think both the song and video is fabulous. All five of them sing solo and it has a real classic Girls Aloud/ Xenomania sound. Loving 'We're the leaders of the pack' lyric a lot.
It is on pre-order from tonight and is released on November 18th.

All the details of their new single, album and tour are here on their website.

Jeffrey Brown's wonderful book 'Darth Vader and Son'

Star Wars has become a generational thing in my family I loved the first three films from 1977 onwards and then when my brother Mike saw them on VHS in the 1980s he loved them too. Now my nephew Ben also likes them. Over the years Mike has made me several Star Wars related cards and birthday and Christmas presents. I have every card he has made me and presents from a C-3PO ceramic plate to my AT-AT bookcase. 

This year I got two Star Wars presents from Mike. The one he made me is completely original and very fantastic and is on the wall here beside me as I type at the desk in my spare room in my house. The other present is a hardback book called Darth Vader and Son and is a collection of drawings by Jeffrey Brown of Darth Vader and his son Luke.

The intro to the book says:

A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away....

Episode three and a half:


Darth Vader, Dark Lord of
the Sith, leads the Galactic
Empire against the heroic Rebel
Allicance. Before he can take
care of the rebels, Lord Vader
must first take care of his son-
four-year-old Luke Skywalker

Here are some of the drawings from the book. I love that the other characters from the film are also the right age that they should be when Luke was a child especially Lando and Greedo. And also that Leia dresses her toys in girls clothes which is a great reference to the fact that bar her Aunt  (who she didn't even know!) in the first film she was the only woman in Space.

If you love Star Wars as much as I do the link where to buy the book is here. it is also published by Chronicle books who have a special website just for the book here.

Monday, October 15, 2012

Leaving - The new single by the Pet Shop Boys

Leaving is the gorgeous new single by the Pet Shop Boys and is the second single release from their Elysium album.

Fellow pop blogger Enda Guinan is one of Neil and Chris's biggest fans and he has lots of Pet Shop Boys articles on his website here. Neil was interviewed on Irish radio by John Murray back in August and that very entertaining interview is on Enda's website here.

Here's Leaving which is their 55th single! Many years of quality pop.

Nautilus - The opening track on Anna Meredith's Black Prince Fury E.P.

Contemporary composer Anna Meredith releases her four track E.P. Black Prince Fury this week on download and on limited edition vinyl. The four pieces music are Nautilus, Rhododendron, New Wonder and Ora. More details of the E.P. and it's limited edition on The Vinyl Factory's website here.

Black Prince Fury is released on Moshi Moshi Records and full details of their music artists are here.

A video for Nautilus has also been released which recently premièred on Noisey

Boy - Nina Nesbitt

Nina Nesbitt is currently on tour in the UK. Her new single is Boy which is also her first major label single release. She has to date released two E.P.s; the four track Live Take in December 2011 and the five track The Apple Tree in the summer of this year which was a hit on the ITunes singer-songwriters chart. She is also writing her debut studio album at the moment with producer Jake Gosling who has previously worked with Paloma Faith and Ed Sheeran. 

Nina's website which includes all her current tour dates is here and her Twitter page is @NinaNesbitt

I love the note under her Youtube video for Boy that says 'all paper in this video was recycled'.

Three songs from Karima Francis's album The Remedy

Karima Francis released her second studio album The Remedy in August of this year. She is currently touring with Newton Faulkner. Full details of those upcoming concerts on her website here.

Here are three songs from The Remedy. The first is Glory Days which is my favourite song by her.

The second song is Wherever I Go.

and the third song is Stay. This is a live performance with Julia Kent on cello and was filmed for the Writer's Bench TV which is a live performance concept which brings a mixture of song, music, spoken word, film and dance together. Their Youtube page is here.

Karmina francis's website is here and her Twitter page is @KarimaFrancis

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Talk Me Down - The Dead Heavys

Everybody in the Nite by The Dead Heavys is one of the songs that I've liked the most in 2012. Here's another song by them. It's Talk Me Down and the live performance was filmed in Cranfield house in  Waterford here in Ireland. I love the production on this song. I really think 2013 will be a big year for them.

Their Twitter page is @TheDeadHeavys.

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Silver Threads of Hope: An Anthology

This evening here in Dublin sees the launch of a new anthology of short stories entitled Silver Threads of Hope. The anthology is in aid of the Irish charity Console and features stories by 28 different Irish authors and it is edited by Sinead Gleeson.

Console is a organisation which was established in 2002 by Paul Kelly who had experienced the death of a loved one by suicide. Console supports people in Suicidal Crisis and those bereaved by suicide through professional counselling, support and helpline services. 

Console is a now a national organisation and has centres in seven counties in Ireland; Dublin, Cork, Galway, Limerick, Athlone, Wexford and Kildare. More information about Console and their services is here.

The 28 stories in Silver Threads of Hope are new or have been unpublished to date and they have been collected and edited by Sinead Gleeson with an introduction by Anne Enright whose idea it was to bring these stories together to raise awareness and funding for Console's work. The writers involved are Kevin Barry, Greg Baxter, Dermot Bolger, John Boyne, Declan Burke, John Butler, Trevor Byrne, Mary Costello, Emma Donoghue, Roddy Doyle, Dermot Healy, Christine Dywer Hickey, Declan Hughes, Arlene Hunt, Colm Keegan, John Kelly, Claire Kilroy, Pat McCabe, Colum McCann, John McKenna, Belinda McKeon, Mike McCormack, Siobhan Mannion, Peter Murphy, Nuala Ni Chonchuir, Phillip O'Ceallaigh, Keith Ridgway, William Wall. 

Silver Threads of Hope is published by New Island  and is available in Irish bookshops as of this week. When I first read a few months ago that Sinead was editing this collection and the organisation that it was in aid of I knew that it will be one of the most important books of the months ahead. In my twenty something years living here in Dublin I have met many people who love reading and Sinead is without a doubt someone who is so passionate about the importance of reading and good writing in people's lives. I know the Silver Threads of Hope project is something in which she has combined her good heart and love of the art of the short story. The title of the anthology is from the Adrian Crowley song Bless Our Tiny Hearts. The lyrics are featured in the book and can be read here

Monday, October 8, 2012

Get a Job - Gossip

To date Gossip have released two singles from their  A Joyful Noise album; Perfect World and Move in the Right Direction. The third single looks like it will be Get a Job. They are currently touring the US with forthcoming coming dates in Seattle, Portland Oregon and San Francisco this month before they tour in South America and Europe. No dates in Ireland announced as of yet. I wait in hope! All their tour dates are here.

Waterfalls - the new single by Stooshe

Black Heart by Stooshe is one of the best pop songs of 2012 and it is still in the top 40 in the UK many weeks after it's release. Their new single is a cover version of Waterfalls by TLC and it isn't too different from the original which was one of the 1990's perfect pop songs. It is already 17 years old!  Waterfalls is a cover that's perfect for Stooshe and it will definitely be another top ten hit for them. It will be released in November as a double A side single with See Me Like This which also features on their self tilted debut album which is also released in November.

You Ain't Seen Nothin' Yet - Lisa Marie Presley

In May of this year Lisa Marie Presley released her third studio album Storm & Grace. It was produced by T-Bone Burnett. The most recent single released from that album is You Ain't seen Nothin' Yet. I think the song's production really evokes the pop rock and blues sound of the 1960s. The music video is directed by Dean Kerr.

Latch - Disclosure featuring Sam Smith

Latch by Disclosure featuring Sam Smith has been released on download this week. It's a quality track and is currently in the top 40 and climbing on today Monday's UK ITunes charts. Best new song I heard recently.

ITunes download link is here.

Sunday, October 7, 2012

Roísín O covers 'Dog Days Are Over' by Florence and the Machine

Here's a great version of the Florence and the Machine song Dog Days Are Over performed by Irish singer Roísín O who recently released her new album The Secret Life of Blue. Roísín is also currently touring Ireland promoting her new songs. More details here.

Thursday, October 4, 2012

100 Cover Versions #98: Belinda Carlisle covers 'I Feel Free'

This year Belinda Carlisle's album Heaven On Earth is 25 years. It was released in 1987 and it  featured what has become her most well known solo single Heaven is a Place on Earth which got to number one in several countries worldwide including the U.S., the UK and here in Ireland There were several great singles released from that album including I Get Weak and Circle in the Sand. My favourite single was her version I Feel Free which was originally recorded by Cream in 1966. Her version wasn't a big hit in the US charts but I think it is glorious and still sounds great today.

Here also is the 12" Dub Extended remix of I Feel Free.

100 Cover Versions #97: Annie Lennox covers 'A Whiter Shade of Pale' by Procol Harum

In 1967 Procol Harum released their debut single A Whiter Shade of Pale and it was number one in the UK charts for six weeks that year. It is one of those songs that I have been aware of for a long time. It is one of those beautiful songs that has a wonderful unnerving qualit.

In 1995 Annie Lennox covered A Whiter Shade of pale and it fetured on her Medusa album. The first single from that album was No More I Love Yous which got to number 2 in the UK charts. A Whiter Shade of Pale was the follow up single release and it reached number 16 in the UK charts.

As with the majority of her solo music videos and indeed the various Eurythmics videos the music video for A Whiter Shade of Pale was also a thing of beauty. Like so many singers on this 100 Cover Versions list I couldn't imagine music without Annie Lennox. 

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Anna Sun - Walk The Moon

Anna Sun by Walk the Moon has been around since 2010. It featured on their self released album I Want I Want in 2010 and it also features on their new Walk The Moon album on the RCA record label. This week it is currently at the lower end of the UK's I Tunes singles charts and is definitely a song that should be a top 40 hit.

They play the O2 Shepard's Bush Empire music venue in London tonight supporting Fun. which is not surprisingly sold out.

The video captures the indie pop sound of the song perfectly. 

Ellie Goulding covers 'Some Nights' by Fun.

This coming weekend will see Ellie Goulding's new single Anything Could Happen chart in the top ten in the UK's singles charts. It will be her first top ten hit in the UK charts since Your Song got to number 2 in December 2010. She recently recorded a session for BBC's Radio 1's Live lounge show. One of the songs she sang was her version of Fun.'s Some Nights. I love this song and much prefer it to We Are Young.

Here it is. Thanks to Turn1starists for posting on Youtube.