16/1/07 Rosie Bell: Early Warning

Received Rosie Bell’s CD today – excellent stuff. I played on three of the songs last year but it was long enough ago for them to sound fresh to my ears today. It’s nice to hear someone I know live up to her potential and put out a really good CD. I hope lots of … Read more


After a smooth and successful day at work I’d intended to go to OOTB and get back into playing, but my help was needed at home, so it was after 9 by the time I got there. Nice to catch up with old friends, and saw spots by Emily Scott and Peter Michael Rowan. Emily … Read more

20/12/06 christmas songs

Christmas reflections:Slade’s Merry Christmas Everybody (or is that Evrybodee?) – what a miserable tune. I wonder if the secret of its longevity is the tension between its party-time lyrics and the melancholy plod of a melody and chord sequence? Perhaps if it had been one thing or the other it would have ended up like … Read more


Grabbed some study time (for Javascript) at work, which was good. In the evening went out to see friends Impossible Songs and Confushian at an Emergenza showcase evening. In the dark Jazz Bar, a genial compere tried his best to stir a sparse audience into awareness. The performances were all good, particularly a duo called … Read more

Momus – Forbidden Software Timemachine

I just got this double CD, a compilation of seven albums Momus put out  between 1987 and 1993. Some extraordinary songwriting, the most literary lyrics in contemporary music (Bluestocking is almost entirely a list of the books his lover has read!) but not in a look-at-me-I’m-clever way, more like listening to one of your more intelligent and sardonic friends musing over a rinky-tinky cheap electro beat.  The melodies are flowing, Europop, like the best of the Pet Shop Boys or early Scott Walker without the orchestras. I have many of these already on scratched vinyl or dull cassettes but hearing them again has me shocked at the guy’s talent. (If you’ve heard me sing Ricky, it’s based on Momus’s adaptation of Jacque Brel’s Jackie.)

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My favourite classical music

Just back from the Usher Hall where I went with Madame, her father and her sister for Royal Scottish National Orchestra evening of Russian classics. I realise that when I have conversations with people about music and smugly say I prefer this or that which is more obscure and less middle-of-the-road than what they like, … Read more