05 July, 2017

Dreaming in Stereo for July 5, 2017 - All Britpop

It was suggested to me recently that I should put a bit more of myself in my shows, and talk more about my experiences having been a devoted music fan for far longer than I care to admit. And while my philosophy has always been that a good DJ lets the music do the talking, who am I to deny my audience?

I'm not sure this episode is quite what they had in mind, but it made for a good excuse to dig into the record collection (and keep myself from buying any new music - at least for one week). Plus, I finally found a place for that Teenage Fanclub song I've been sitting on for a while now.

While I try my hardest to eschew nostalgia, I do have to admit putting this show together brought back some fond memories: crossing the border from Detroit to Windsor every week to hit the Tuesday Britpop night at the Loop (back when you could cross the border that easily, and when I was in a position to make Tuesday night a regular club night), looking past the annoying ubiquity of Elastica's "Connection" (seriously, circa 1994-95 you couldn't get away from that song if you tried) because after a couple of drinks you could admit that it was really catchy, singing along with "Common People" even though it was the 456212754th time you heard it and it didn't matter because that song could, and would never get old (and truth be told, it still hasn't).

So as not to break the general tone of the show too much, the set's not a free-for-all dance party, but hopefully still enjoyable. Having only an hour meant a lot of groups couldn't get in, but all the majors were there (sorry, Menswear).

Blur - The Universal - The Great Escape - Virgin
Pulp - Help the Aged - This is Hardcore - Island
Elastica - Waking Up - Elastica - Geffen
Adorable - Sistine Chapel Ceiling - Against Perfection - Creation
Echobelly - Insomniac - Everyone's Got One - Rhythm King
Curve - Horror Head - Doppelganger - Charisma Records
Suede w/ Raissa - Poor Little Rich Girl - 20th Century Blues: The Songs of Noel Coward - EMI
New Order - World (The Price of Love) - Republic - London Records
Oasis - Talk Tonight - The Masterplan - Creation
The Charlatans UK - You're Not Very Well - Some Friendly - Beggars Banquet
James - Tomorrow - Whiplash - Mercury
The Courteeners - What Took You So Long? - St. Jude - Polydor
Teenage Fanclub - Hold On - Here - Merge Records

And even though I know I've posted it before and it's horribly outdated at this point, I can't listen to "Help the Aged" without thinking of Jarvis on Da Ali G Show:

28 June, 2017

Dreaming in Stereo for June 28, 2017

Sometimes, a set that doesn't fit one show becomes the axis of the next. I'd been wanting to play that Mark Lanegan for a while, ever since a friend let me hear what a monster that new album is, but I could never find the right place for it. I'd intended to have it in last week, but I think you'll agree that wouldn't fit in a show based on the new Ride. So, between the blank slate of a new show, and the Horrors' release of their new single, it all came together.

Speaking of that new single, the Horrors just keep getting better and better with each album. It's almost  a shame that they released Strange House, if only because we'll never get to hear that band again, and it was a tease of what they could have done if they'd continued in that direction (for those of us who like the noisy rock 'n' roll). But everything from Primary Colours on has been increasingly brilliant, their sophistication and mastery of atmosphere growing with each release. I can not wait for this new one.

It seems like I've found a few shoegaze bands from Brazil recently. I'll have to do some digging, I think there could be a set or even possibly a show's worth there.

And speaking of the show:
The Horrors - Machine - V - Wolftone
The Black Angels - Currency - Death Song - Partisan Records
Helen - Dying All the Time - The Original Faces - Kranky
Ruina - Burn - In Venus
Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds - Jubilee Street - Push the Sky Away - Bad Seed Ltd.
Mark Lanegan Band - Nocturne - Gargoyle - Heavenly
The Organ - Memorize the City - Grab That Gun - Mint Records
Processions - Solopsist - Blush
No Joy - Hellhole - Creep EP - Grey Market
Taxes - City in My Head - Back of the Car Collection
Distant Creatures - Empire (acoustic) - A Friend's Halo single
Beach House - Space Song - Depression Cherry - Sub Pop

And here, something to kill some more time, Pitchfork's 50 Greatest Shoegaze Albums of All Time, and the inevitable response article featuring even more obscure bands.

26 June, 2017

Dreaming in Stereo for June 21, 2017

Better late then never, eh?

The new Ride album came out June 16th, and to say there have been mixed reviews would be an understatement. It's easy for fans to forget that the band put anything out after Going Blank Again (especially those fans too young to remember when Tarantula came out), and nostalgia has always had a way of warping our collective recollections of what bands sounded like (or were supposed to sound like). But taken on its own merits, Weather Diaries is actually quite a solid album, blending the varied elements of the band's original development along with some new ones that expand the sound dynamic even further (keyboards!). As a whole, the album is a nice return to form, and has some top notch singles as well (two of which you'll hear on this show).

Putting this set together was a little difficult, until I realized that I should eschew my instinct to mix it up and go with a shoegaze/dreampop exclusive set (or close enough), to really keep with the vibe of the featured band. It was a good excuse to dig out some tracks I'd been trying to find a spot for since I started, so I think it all worked out well.

Anyhow, let's be on with it, shall we?

Ride -All I Want - Weather Diaries - Wichita Recordings
Jefre Cantu-Ledesma - Tenderness - On Echoing Green - Mexican Summer
The Daysleepers - Mesmerize - Hide Your Eyes EP - White Rabbit Music
The Legends - He Knows the Sun - Public Radio - Labrador Records
Blouse - Into Black - Blouse - Captured Tracks
Paper Daggers - Between Moments - Paper Daggers - self-released
Ether Aura - One Hand Away From Out - Before We Could Sing - Analog Terror Music
Crocodiles - Telepathic Lover - Dreamless - Zero Music
Midnight Faces - Blue Haze - Heavenly Bodies - Broken Factory
Flyying Colours - It's Tomorrow Now - Mindfulness - Club A
Beliefs - Leaper - Leaper - Hand Drawn Dracula
Japanese Breakfast - Everybody Wants to Love You - Psychopomp - Yellow K
Ride - Weather Diaries - Weather Diaries - Wichita Recordings

And this is a couple of years old at this point, but still worth your time:

Dreaming in Stereo for June 14, 2017

Well crap, looks like I forgot to post for a week. Well here it is, a mix of old and new, with at least a couple of deep dives in the crate. Gotta keep it interesting, no?

Chapterhouse - Pearl - Whirlpool - Dedicated
Glasvegas - Shine Like Stars - Euphoric Heartbreak - Columbia
the XX - Say Something Loving - I See You - Young Turks
Echo & the Bunnymen - The Game - Echo & the Bunnymen - Sire
British Sea Power - The Lonely - The Decline of British Sea Power - Rough Trade America
Giungla - Sand - Camo - Factory Flaws
Chastity Belt - Caught in a Lie - I Used to Spend So Much Time Alone - Sub Pop
the Auteurs -  Underground Movies - Now I'm a Cowboy - Hut Recordings
Jay Som - 1 Billion Dogs - Everybody Works - Polyvinyl
Heavy Heart - Teenage Witch - Keepsake - Heavy Heart
Cigarettes After Sex - The Apocalypse - Cigarettes After Sex - Partisan
Bat for Lashes - Never Forgive the Angels - The Bride - Parlophone
Passengers with Luciano Pavoratti - Miss Sarajevo - Original Soundtracks 1 - Island

11 June, 2017

Dreaming in Stereo for June 5, 2017

Not much to say about this one, and due to another busy week am waaay late posting this, so here's the show. More on the week with the next episode.

Wild Nothing - TV Queen - Life of Pause - Captured Tracks
Camera Obscura - Troublemaker - Desire Lines - 4AD
Distant Creatures - A Friend's Halo - Snares in Safe Harbors - self released
Coloresantos - Esplendor - Zilla Records x Cohete Lunar -or- Tercer Paisaje - Zilla Records
Planning for Burial - Threadbare - Below the House - The Flenser
A Place to Bury Strangers - In the Shadow - Batman: Arkham City Soundtrack (limited edition) - WaterTower Music
Sheer - Room - Psychic Quarry EP - The Native Sound
Kindling - Blinding Wave - Everywhere Else - No Idea Records
Esben and the Witch - Deathwaltz - Wash the Sins Not Only the Face - Matador
Drab Majesty - Only a Mime - Who Taught You How to Love? - Dais Records
Black Tape for a Blue Girl - The Flow of Our Spirit - This Lush Garden Within - Projekt
Mira - Alone - Mira - Projekt
Asobi Seksu - Trance Out - Fluorescence - Polyvinyl Records
Ringo Deathstarr - Stare at the Sun - Pure Mood - Vinyl Junkie
Dum Dum Girls - Jail La La - I Will Be - HoZac Records

31 May, 2017

Dreaming in Stereo for May 30, 2017

After last week's pop-heavy Manc episode, I figured it was time for another shoegaze-heavy episode. I don't know that it quite worked out that way, but I have no regrets. I just discovered Chastity Belt, who open the show, and there's a definite feeling of "how did they sneak by me?" going on with them. The three tracks I've heard so far off the new album are fairly stellar, and looking forward to the full release.

Also discovered a couple of knockout bands from London: Swimming Tapes, who are nice and breezy and eminently catchy, and Night Swimming, who are dense and thick and have a nice, heavy take on the 'gaze (and from what I picked up from the web, only formed last year, and are already sounding like they've put their time in).

Chastity Belt - Different Now - I Used to Spend So Much Time Alone - Sub Pop
The Launderettes - Cold Cold Hearts - Getaway - Wicked Cool Records
Supermoon - Lemonade - single - Other Coast
Swimming Tapes - Set the Fire - Souvenirs EP - Hand in Hive
Jefre Cantu-Ledesma - A Song of Summer - On Echoing Green - Mexican Summer
Galaxie 500 - Don't Let Our Youth Go to Waste - Today - Aurora Records
Night Swimming - Tusk - Blossom - self-released
Adorable - Sunshine Smile - Against Perfection - Creation
Ride - Drive Blind - Smile - Sire
Bleach - Trip & Slide - Killing Time - Elektra
Blonde Redhead - Equus - Misery is a Butterfly - 4AD

 This episode actually began with the Adorable song, and built around that. Back in the mid-late 1990s, when I was full into my first major Britpop phase (coming, as it did, at the tail end of the movement), Adorable was one of those bands I'd heard of, but being in the Midwest could never find anything by. Not even when we'd cross the border and hit up the record stores in Canada, there was never anything to be found. And to be fair, it's not hard to understand why - Canada may have stronger ties to the Empire than down here, but even there you're not going to get a lot of traction as a third-tier Britpop band. Which is too bad, as they were a decent group with some fairly catchy hooks and solid chops. But in a genre that was overflowing with talent (much of which would end up immolating itself in the trappings of success), not everyone could make it to the front of the stage.

It took years for me to finally track them down, and I think the song featured in this episode proves that time wasn't all in vain. It may not be Earth-shattering, but there's always room in the world for a good pop song.

28 May, 2017

Dreaming in Stereo for May 22, 2017 - The Manchester Episode

What a difference a few hours can make.

In honor of Morrissey's birthday on May 22, I thought I'd not just feature a tribute to Moz himself, but to the city that (more or less) made him, Manchester. As anyone who's seen the movie 24 Hour Party People, or has even a passing knowledge of pop music in the late 20th century knows, there's an almost staggering amount of talent that came out of that northern England town, particularly in the 1980s and '90s. So that Monday afternoon I posted the show, and due to technical issues (note: don't use Internet Explorer if you have any choice in the matter) I wasn't able to post this entry until later.

Like a lot of people, my heart sank that night when I heard the news. Here was this city I'd just honoured a few hours prior, making headlines for all the wrong reasons. I don't even want to mention it again, as I like this show to be a respite from the seemingly endless parade of tragedy and farce that seem to be the zeitgeist of the 20-teens, but suffice it to say this episode took on a different tone for me (and for the listeners?) in the days that followed.

Anyway, enough of being a really heavy negative vibe merchant. Enjoy the show, and Viva la Morrissey!

The Smiths - Unhappy Birthday - Strangeways, Here We Come - Sire
The Stone Roses - Mersey Paradise - The Complete Stone Roses - Silvertone Records
James - Say Something - Laid - Mercury
Inspiral Carpets - This Is How It Feels - Life - Elektra
Doves - House of Mirrors - Kingdom of Rust - Heavenly
Elbow - Grace Under Pressure - Cast of Thousands - V2 Records
Courteeners - Has He Told You He Loves You Yet? - Concrete Love  PIAS Cooperative
Joy Division - Novelty - Heart and Soul - London
New Order w/ Billy Corgan - Turn My Way - Get Ready - London
Electronic - Get the Message - Get the Message - Warner Bros.
Johnny Marr - European Me - The Messenger - Warner Bros.
Sandie Shaw w/ the Smiths - Hand in Glove - Hand in Glove single - Rough Trade
Morrissey - Get Off the Stage - The HMV/Parlophone Singles '88-'95 - EMI
Morrissey - Last Night I Dreamt That Somebody Loved Me - Live at Earl's Court - Attack Records

And at the risk of veering into sentimentality, here's Glastonbury Festival's Poet in Residence Tony Walsh reading his poem "This Is the Place":