Top tracks of 2018 #17: Field Music, Courtney Barnett, Montaigne & Rolling Blackouts Coastal Fever

Richard

Today’s track from me is ‘Count It Up’ by Field Music. This definitely has a Talking Heads vibe, both in the vocal delivery and the song being a list that is effectively the progeny of  ‘Once In A Lifetime’ and Ian Dury’s ‘Reasons To Be Cheerful’. I guess one of the perils of fifty years of music listening is that you can often hear the etymology of song, but that doesn’t make this any less enjoyable.

If you can turn on the tap
And your kids can drink the water
Count that up
If you’ve ever had the luxury of turning down a job
Count that up
If you had books and newspapers in your house when you were a kid
Count that up

Roy

At #17 I’ve plumped for ‘Talking Straight’ by Melbourne’s Rolling Blackouts Coastal Fever. Last year’s sparkling ‘French Press EP’ (as featured on this blog in last year’s countdown) set a very high benchmark for their debut album and boy did they deliver. ‘Hope Downs’ is a tumult of amped up Go Betweens melody and Blue Aeroplanes post-punk art attack, delivered masterfully by the 3 singer-songwriting guitar front line. I’ve stuck to the ‘singles’ only rule, but as good as this is, it isn’t even the best track on the album.

Andy

Following on from Roy’s entry and completely coincidentally, my own choice is also from “a land down under”. She’s someone who has certainly been included here before, although I was surprised to learn, not by me! Known for her witty lyrics and deadpan singing style, this was one of four singles from her sophmore album “Tell Me How You Really Feel”, which was released in the Spring. The first female vocalist on my list, but I suspect the only Antipodean, here’s the long-overdue Ms Barnett…

Ian

Well, let me add another Antipodean to the list. For what it’s worth Courtney has had a huge couple of years, including a terrific album last year with Kurt Vile called “Lotta Sea Lice” and she has just curated her first festival (Sonic City in Belgium, last month). Barnett is but one of a number of female artists from our part of the world making it big on a global stage. Walking along the same pathway of independent, considered compositions, let me introduce Montaigne. The stage name of Sydney singer-songwriter Jessica Cerro, Montaigne has been building a solid base of fans since her debut release as a teenager six years ago. My selected track for #17 is “For Your Love”, released as a single a couple of months ago and (apparently) from her second album due sometime next year. The video reflects the twisted pop of the song, veering into the world of kink with extensive use of shibari (Japanese rope bondage) as a metaphor for the lyrics.

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7 thoughts on “Top tracks of 2018 #17: Field Music, Courtney Barnett, Montaigne & Rolling Blackouts Coastal Fever

  1. Interesting Local Record Store story for me about Field Music’s album: I bought it, along with a bunch of other CDs earlier this year, including a new copy of the “Naked Self” by The The. In conversation with the guy behind the register I expressed my wish to see Matt Johnson again and he informed me that The The was indeed touring in the UK in 2018 and would be in Oz later in the year (something I didn’t know at the time). In return, perhaps to share different music interests, he told me that the band he really wanted to see live was Field Music – so much so he flew to England just to attend one of their shows. Perhaps the band will make it to the Antipodes in 2019 so we can see them live without having to spend 24 hours on a plane.

    1. It’s a small world indeed. Another TheThe tour next year would be great, but some new songs would be even better. Nothing on future plans from Matt himself, but I do hope he keeps the momentum, whether recording or touring. Naked Self is underrated and he did two songs from it on the tour: GlobalEyes and TheWhisoerers. My fave would be VoidyNumbness.

  2. At #17 I’ve plumped for ‘Talking Straight’ by Melbourne’s Rolling Blackouts Coastal Fever. Last year’s sparkling ‘French Press EP’ (as featured on this blog in last year’s countdown) set a very high benchmark for their debut album and boy did they deliver. ‘Hope Downs’ is a tumult of amped up Go Betweens melody and Blue Aeroplanes post-punk art attack, delivered masterfully by the 3 singer-songwriting guitar front line. I’ve stuck to the ‘singles’ only rule, but as good as this is, it isn’t even the best track on the album.

    1. RCBF are a band who flit around the edge of my awareness, I hear their stuff on the radio and think I really should investigate more, rather like British Sea Power. Or perhaps it’s their names that makes me group them together..

  3. Following on from Roy’s entry and completely coincidentally, my own choice is also from “a land down under”. She’s someone who has certainly been included here before, although I was surprised to learn, not by me! Known for her witty lyrics and deadpan singing style, this was one of four singles from her sophmore album “Tell Me How You Really Feel”, which was released in the Spring. The first female vocalist on my list, but I suspect the only Antipodean, here’s the long-overdue Ms Barnett…

  4. Well, let me add another Antipodean to the list. For what it’s worth Courtney has had a huge couple of years, including a terrific album last year with Kurt Vile called “Lotta Sea Lice” and she has just curated her first festival (Sonic City in Belgium, last month). Barnett is but one of a number of female artists from our part of the world making it big on a global stage. Walking along the same pathway of independent, considered compositions, let me introduce Montaigne. The stage name of Sydney singer-songwriter Jessica Cerro, Montaigne has been building a solid base of fans since her debut release as a teenager six years ago. My selected track for #17 is “For Your Love”, released as a single a couple of months ago and (apparently) from her second album due sometime next year. The video reflects the twisted pop of the song, veering into the world of kink with extensive use of shibari (Japanese rope bondage) as a metaphor for the lyrics.

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