Ryan(StopMe): My ‘Top 100 Tracks Of 2008‘ nears completion but I’ve still managed to find ten fresh sounds to christen the new year:

‘Nothing Too Much Just Out Of Sight’ is a howling Blues hurricane from Paul McCartney & Youth under their The Fireman moniker.
Macca sounds more like Screamin’ Jay Hawkins than his usual naff self-parodying vocals that’ve featured on his latter solo albums. He’s clearly letting go of some serious anger, wonder what could’ve brought that about?

Genius steals as they say, so Prince should be doing a 50 stretch for his new track ‘Crimson & Clover’. He nicks Lou Reed’s riff from ‘Sweet Jane’ and purloins musical elements and even whole lines from ‘Wild Thing’. But who cares when he spins it all together into such a thrilling epic from one of the three albums he’s got planned for 2009.
(Update! As a reader points out, this is a cover of Tommy James & The Shondells (1968) to which Prince has slipped in lines from Chip Taylor’s ‘Wild Thing’ (1965). Lou Reed’s ‘Sweet Jane’ was first aired about twelve months after ‘Crimson & Clover’ charted. Meaning it was in fact Lou Reed that was “Inspired” by The Shondells’ riff).

‘East End After-Hours Blues’ is camp-fire-Blues that manages to sound distantly-ancient and bang up-to-date at the same time. But if you’re thinking that Popular Tyre are a Blues band, think again, depending on which of their tracks you listen to, you could get Rock, Folk or even Electro like on their new single ‘Robot Love’.

‘Dark Leaves Form A Thread’ is big bold Pop-Rock from Vancouver’s ‘Destroyer’. Behind the bright catchy facade lurk much darker depressive lyrics, making for an intoxicating combination.

If The Polyphonic Spree were the rich kid singing, dancing and shouting at the front, then The Heart Strings would be the little guy sitting quietly at the back writing poetry. On ‘Jose Fernandez’ plucked Harps, marching Drums and Church organs weave a beguiling tapestry.

She & Him are Folk musician M. Ward and actress Zooey Deschanel (The achingly-beautiful star of ‘The Hitchhiker’s Guide To The Galaxy’ movie). ‘Why Do You Let Me Stay Here?’ is Beatles-esque, not in the usual tired “Hey! Why don’t we tack on some Sitars?” way, but because it’s got the same peculiar Pop pedigree of McCartney’s finest mid-period compositions.

‘Life Like’ is a brooding Rock cut bringing to mind a less suicidally depressing version of iLiKETRAiNS. The Rosebuds singer Ivan Howard delivers some introspective lyrical majesty while the music hums with dread (Click here to get a great Mash-Up featuring said track).

Plastic Little have got their sticky fingers in everybodies pies at the minute. The latest track I’ve heard is their own Remix of their guest spot on Filthy Dukes’ already magnificent Club banger ‘Tupac Robot Club Rock’ (No relation to Daft Punk’s ‘Robot Rock’). Naturally their guest rap covers such mature subjects as ding-a-lings, drug taking and pissing in sinks.

Mr. Hudson
is finally moving towards releasing the follow up to his incredible 2007 album ‘A Tale Of Two Cities’. ‘There Will Be Tears’ features Radiohead style beats and Mr. Hudson’s singing a soothing lament. His heavy use of the Vocoder won’t be to everyone’s tastes, but don’t let that put you off this quiet but powerful performance.

Manchester’s prolific Stickboy rather generously has put up a new 4-track EP… gratis! ‘Forget Yourself’ is my Country-tinged highlight but check the rest of it (And some more of his amazing back catalogue) by visiting his MySpace Page.


Destroyer MySpace / Purchase
Filthy Dukes MySpace / Purchase
Mr. Hudson MySpace / Purchase
Popular Tyre MySpace / Purchase
Prince Website / Purchase
She & Him MySpace / Purchase
Stickboy MySpace / Purchase
The Fireman MySpace / Purchase
The Heart Strings MySpace / Purchase
The Rosebuds MySpace / Purchase

Here’s the video for the original version of Filthy Dukes and Plastic Little’s ‘Tupac Robot Club Rock’:

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