What’s worse than not going to the Camden Crawl? Answer: Not going and unknowingly giving them your mobile number. There’s nothing like an hourly text message telling you the length of queues at the various venues to remind you just what you’re missing.

Fortunately London offers plenty of alternatives to the £50 Crawl, Rough Trade celebrated World Record Store day with over a dozen acts performing in their East End store, and the mighty Superimposers put on a night in Kings Cross. Total cost = Nowt.

More importantly no trip to Rough Trade is complete without stumbling across a release the existence of which would otherwise have passed you by. Visits have to be strictly rationed as its impossible to leave without £50 quids worth of music you had no intention of buying when you went in.

JOHN FAIRHURST

Humble Soul is not a label with a huge release schedule, but you can guarantee that everything they put out is just that little bit special.  Last year, they produced a meagre 500 copies of Denis Jones’s “Humdrum Virtue” album, but 500 people will not have heard much that surpassed it in 2007.

Despite all this I failed to notice their latest release “Joys of Spring” by John Fairhurst until idly passing time on a Rough Trade listening post while waiting for Lykke Li to come on stage.

Its the sound of the spirit of Django Reinhardt, Ravi Shanker, Bukka White, and Nick Drake all channeled through the body of a humble soul from Wigan. Thanks must go to John’s dad who introduced him to slide blues at an early age, while he was obviously a late comer to indian classical music, getting in K.Sridhar at the age of 8 (an age at which my tastes were more Shaky than Sridar).

Instrumental guitar albums can flag over the course of a dozen tracks, but John takes his broad musical upbringing and mixes it with years of travelling the world and South East Asia in particular. His website says he “worked alongside Maori gangsters, played slide guitar in a Bangkok blues bar, wrote for a traditional Thai dancer, and was tattooed with protective blessings by monks.”

No track on the album sounds the same, yet it all gels perfectly together like a wondrous journey around the globe. The Blues bar romp of “Obnox Stomp”, the plucking English folk harp on “Passing Time” and the slide blues of “Yew Tree Blues”. That Indian classical influence is very much in effect on several tracks, so much so that one listener subjected to me playing the album for the umpteenth time penned her own mini review… “Jesus Christ…thank god thats over I thought I was trapped in a bloody Indian Restaurant!”  Not a review that musiclikedirt would of course endorse… buy this record!

John Fairhurst – Myspace / Humble Soul records

John Fairhurst – Obnox Stomp” (MP3)

Buy: John Fairhurst – “Joys of Spring” (Piccadilly records / Boomkat / Humble Soul)

LYKKE LI

Lykke Li (along with Billy Bragg) was one of the main draws for Rough Trades all day celebration of Record Store day.  She’s been likened to both Robyn and Bjork, and both hold true as she combines a lovely quirkiness with a definite pop sensibility.
She’s destined for huge things, having progressed from bloggers favourite to Jools Holland in the last week alone. This short set contained most of the future hits from her debut album Youth Novels, produced by the Bjorn from Peter, Bjorn and John (“Young Folks”).
While it wasnt a performance that will stay long in the mind, the quality of the songs and hints of her inventive full show were on display.

Lykke Li – Myspace (Free MP3 download) / LykkeLi.com

Listen:

Lykke Li – Dance, Dance, Dance” (MP3)

Kelly Stoltz – Birdies Singing” (MP3) – Very similar bassline to Dance, Dance, Dance (especially the Live version)

Watch:

Lykee Li – “I’m Good, I’m Gone (Acoustic version featuring Robyn)” (Fantastic youtube vid)
Lykee Li – Little Bit” (Youtube – fantastic debut single)

Superimposers @ The Social

THE SUPERIMPOSERS

The Superimposers are putting on a free night every 6 weeks or so at The Duke in Kings Cross. Last weekend I caught them live for the second time in a month, and in the Duke’s tiny basement room you can’t help but be sucked in by their charming sound (which I’ve already raved about on this blog quite enough).

Soon to be released single “Northern Song” is an undoubted highlight but in truth there’s not a duff track all evening. On top of that they always invite along a favourite band to support them, in this case The Occasional String Band featuring Mick Talbot on Keys (but I cant find anything on the internet about them?).

Check The Superimposers site below for news of the next freebie gig, and a release date for the single.

The Superimposers – Myspace / Wonderful Sound

Buy:
The Superimposers – “Harpsichord Treacle” (Amazon)

Listen:
Dan Solo – You Make That Sound” (MP3) – Superimposers side project

The Superimposers are guests on Jonny Trunk‘s OST Resonance FM show this weekend. OST is two hours of radio dedicated to the soundtrack – this includes film music, TV music, library music, film music cover versions, advertising sounds, film stars singing, anything that can be placed under the broad banner of soundtrack music.
Saturday 26th April 4:30pm – 6:30pm LIVE
Wednesday 30th April 3:00pm – 5:00pm REPEAT

Update: Listen to the show on The Superimposers Wonderful sound Radio – Visit here

Heading off on a slight tangent can I recommend Jonny Trunks, Trunk records website. Its a great way to lose a few hours with his incredibly off the wall taste in music, sex and nostalgia!

Ranging from Dirty Fan Male (the letters blokes sent to glamour girls), the shortest and catchiest ever hit single 36 seconds of “Ladies Bra’s (youtube), to gems from The Radiophonic Workshop.  There’s also Dereks dishes featuring themed collections of 60’s and 70’s nude and semi nudes organised under headings such as “Making tea”. Very kitsch!

It’s like stumbling into the craziest most fascinating second hand shop, finding bizarre new oddities with every click. 1970’s celebrity cook books anyone!