Tuesday, February 27, 2007
IF YOU ONLY BUY ONE RECORD IN 2007.....
.....MAKE SURE IT'S THIS ONE!!!!!
Just back from an in-store appearance by the fabulous Malcolm Middleton at Fopp Records in Glasgow. There were maybe around 50 of us there to hear him play some new tracks from his new release - A Brighter Beat - that has just come out on the Full Time Hobby label.
Regular visitors will hopefully recall that around four weeks ago, I put up an mp3 when I bought Malcolm's latest single on vinyl. The posting contained the following, which were Malcolm's own words taken from his website:-
‘If I was forced to describe it, I'd probably say it’s a pop album for people who hate pop music. Or maybe I’d describe it as love songs for depressed people who find it hard leaving the house sometimes and worry too much about dying and the consequences of their daily actions and thoughts to be able to enjoy life fully.’
My own observations were that the LP sounds like an early contender for album of the year and a more than worthy follow-up to the near-perfect Into The Woods.
Guess what.......it is.
This is a truly magnificent bit of work. It's impossible to pin it down. It's happy, sad, melancholic, uplifting, witty, self-deprecating, whimsical, ironic and plain bloody brilliant all in one.
There's songs with seemingly depressing titles and subject matters such as the opener, We're All Going To Die, that come dressed in a foot-tapping tune and sing-a-long chorus. There's great pop songs - Fight Like The Night - that arena bands would love to be able to write. There's at least one slow number - Somebody Loves Me - that if it was covered by any of the MOR artists it would surely be a million-plus seller. There's even something approaching an epic - the near 7 minutes of Superhero Songwriters.
And then there's this, which he played live at Fopp tonight:-
mp3 : Malcolm Middleton - Fuck It, I Love You
Marvellous. As I said, happy, sad, melancholic, uplifting, witty, self-deprecating, whimsical, ironic and plain bloody brilliant - and that's just a description of your mp3 tune.
Back in 2005, Malcolm Middleton released Into The Woods which I think is one of the best ever albums to come out of Scotland. Lots of critics agreed, as it featured highly in many end of year polls. But the critical acclaim didn't materialise into mega-sales. Surely this time...
In my book, Malcolm Middleton is every bit as talented and unique a songwriter as the likes of Nick Cave or Edwyn Collins. At times, he writes songs every bit as gorgeous as the ballads of Billy Bragg. I just wish a few others would realise this to be the case.
Please visit Fopp records and buy this album. Click here.
And while you're there, pick up Into The Woods and Malcolm's debut LP - 5:14 Fluoxytine Seagull Alcohol John Nicotine - that came out in 2003.
Here's another couple of songs that were aired tonight:-
mp3 : Malcolm Middleton - Devastation
mp3 : Malcolm Middleton - Devil and The Angel
It was a really special 35 minutes that was way way way above average. Roll on Saturday 24th March when Malcolm brings a band to Glasgow for a full gig. Buy tickets here.
Oh and the official website is here. And the video to his last single is here