As we head into the Autumn I thought I would post ten tracks that I have been playing a lot over the summer. After a crap Spring in the UK it was a pretty decent attempt at a summer and these songs, although not particularly ‘summery’ in some cases ,were what I was playing whilst out and about.
In December I’ll be exchanging 2013 top 20 lists with friends (see last year), and some of these may be contenders. I am resisting the obvious songs of the summer ‘Get Lucky’ and ‘Blurred Lines’ in favour of some songs that don’t feature Pharrell on guest vocals..
Firstly Dumb Disco Ideas by Holy Ghost. The track builds gradually and reminds me a lot of LCD Soundsystem, which is of course no bad thing. The video puts a new spin on the term ‘stage presence’:
Also a longish song, the title track from the Manic Street Preachers, ‘Rewind The Film’. A wistful and nostalgic yearning for a return to the innocence of childhood. At least that is how I read it. Nicky Wire is one of the most under-rated lyricists of the last two decades:
This track from Public Enemy rightly got a lot of airplay on 6 Music over the summer. Released this year It bears comparison with classic PE, and could have been recorded twenty years ago. In a way that’s the point, as the issues it addresses really haven’t gone away, in much the same way as you can dig out a Bill Hicks political rant and still find it relevant. Most of their heroes still don’t appear on no stamps…
From PE to PS and a classic summery anthem from Primal Scream, ‘It’s Alright, It’s OK’:
Gaz Coombes Presents ( not sure what the ‘..presents’ is about) released ‘One Of These Days’ a one off single that is one of the best things he – or indeed Supergrass – has ever done. A sublime timeless track:
Run Boy Run by Woodkid wasn’t actually released in the summer, but at the start of the year. However it has built momentum all year. I doubt it has bothered the charts, but is absolutely everywhere on TV soundtracks, culminating in it joining the ’emotionally manipulative’ soundtrack music used by the X-Factor, in this case signifying ‘this is going to be a dramatic show.’ The first few chimes of this will probably outlive the whole song which is a shame as it packs a lot into its 3:36. Woodkid is a Yoann Lemoine, a French video producer who has done stuff for Katy Perry and Lana Del Rey, so his own video is of course breathtaking. If you don’t think you have heard it, I guarantee you are about to say ‘Oh yes that one…”
Summer 2013 belonged partly to Disclosure. ‘F For You’ was my favourite single from ‘Settle’. It is a close sibling of Hot Chip:
When I heard the following track on the Johnny Marr album in the Spring I thought it was bound to be a single and so eventually it was. The greatest single that Electronic never released…
Last year’s Pet Shop Boys album, Elysium, was OK, but more downbeat than usual. It seems that was because they decide to split the album in two parts with all the disco stuff on this summer’s release Electric. As a result it’s a cracking album, including this cover version of Springsteen’s The Last To Die:
(you can compare it to the original here)
Finally, Charlie Brown by Scienze is a more obvious summer groove from Brooklyn. De La Soul meets Charlie Brown and Lucy…