The other week I wrote about Gabriel Yacoub and his band Malicorne. I forgot to mention one of my favourite Malicorne songs – the story of a gruesome murder carried out by a student – at his mother’s request, no less. It’s called L’Écolier Assassin and comes from their album Almanach. I loved this song … Read moreLovely melodies and gruesome murders – don’t you love folk music?
Gabriel Yacoub is probably the Richard Thompson of the French music scene, from his first album with his then-wife Marie in 1975 to the recent reunion of his folk-rock-prog band Malicorne. Here’s a short introduction to his work. Across a crowded market I was in Paris, my first time abroad with my girlfriend, in the … Read moreGabriel Yacoub – raconteur extraordinaire
I sat four rows from the front. The front line of the band was three full drumkits. The set list was largely drawn from a period of the band’s history that hadn’t greatly interested me before. I had earplugs in, but I took them out after three pieces. After two hours I thought this was … Read moreKing Crimson: love letters and hot dates
Last May I decamped with a bunch of musician friends to a ski lodge in the Highlands for a weekend of recording and jamming. The last song of the weekend was at about 2 o’clock on the Monday morning. To the few still up, I quietly sang Momus’s Bishonen. I’d known the song for years … Read moreMomus in the 90s: the Tender Pervert
Remember how you discovered new music before the internet? There was radio, the occasional TV programme and the music press. Sometimes you’d hear something and decide you wanted to buy it (so you could hear it whenever you want) and sometimes you’d take a chance and buy something without hearing it because of a writeup … Read moreJackie Leven: beauty in his wounds
For over forty years, Jonathan Richman has been scattering gems of wide-eyed wonder and celebration, set to a rockin’ beat. But don’t mistake his innocence for naivety or lack of intelligence. Far from it. He knows exactly what he’s doing and has had a clear vision and world-view from the start. Here’s my take on … Read moreJonathan Richman: Innocent like a Rock