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C'est le ton qui fait la musique

http://www.buffy.nu/article.php3?id_article=3327 and http://robotsites.co.uk/english/tour.shtml

Tee-hee! GotR are playing De Melkweg in May, and tickets go on sale today. I think I'll just nip out on my lunchbreak, then. I downloaded a few sample snippets from their website last year and wasn't too impressed, but it's only 20 euros and I should give them a chance, shouldn't I? Especially since I'll be seeing them again at MR2004 -- might actually be more fun if I can recognise a song or two...

Les Gray died last week Thursday, of cancer. He was lead singer with Mud, one of the early 70s teenybopper bands. I was never a fan, but I do come over all nostalgic when I hear one or other of their songs play on the radio once every so often. He was only 57.

I stopped off downtown when I went to see my Dad on Sunday. These are the last days of the winter sales and I just wanted to make sure I hadn't overlooked anything while making the rounds of all the best shoe shops in town. Unfortunately, I hadn't. There really was nothing to tempt me, and there hasn't been all this winter. It's been a very bad year for shoes, is all that I can say.

Foiled in my objective, I turned to the next best thing: CDs! There's this record shop that sells rare releases, that I like to frequent...but in order to make ends meet, they also sell the occasional 'Best Of'-CD. Years ago, I wouldn't have even looked at the compilation album rack, because 'compilation albums are for dummies', or such was my conceit. Now, I do rummage through that particular rack occasionally, because you never know what you might find.

I used to have an extensive record collection (though not half as extensive as my mother's, who at last count had something like 5,000 vinyl records), but switched to CDs some 15 years ago. Stupidly, I then gave away my record collection, thinking I'd replace it on the new medium in no time. But somehow that never really came to pass. For one thing, I've never seen any of my former bootlegs, or little known indie-label (punk) bands, out on CD. For another, I've been too busy buying new stuff. But sometimes, I can find one or two songs I remember from way back when, in among the dross on a compilation album CD. And then I want it.

But wanting it and purchasing it are two different things entirely. It depends in large measure on who's minding the shop. If it's the occasional Saturday help or work experience student, I don't mind, and I'll go up to the counter and have them ring up my sale. If, OTOH, it's the guy who almost lives there, and who looks uncannily like The Young One's Neil except with far more attitude, then I'd rather die than to show him what I've got. Because he'll only snort. And he might actually say something like "You don't really want this shite, do you?" and make a face. He'll sigh, and slump, and I'll feel so guilty and humiliated.

Last Sunday, he was minding the store on his own. I went through the racks and found a Paul Weller release I don't own (yet), of him playing songs by other artists...but the price tag put me off: 26 euros? Regretfully, I put it back where I found it.

For the last few weeks, the thought of The The and their 1983 album Soul Mining, one of the records I lost in the great spring cleaning of 1989, had been going through my head. And frigging hell, but I only found a copy priced at 10 euros! That one was mine.
And so was Beth Orton's The Other Side of Daybreak, which at 17 euros was about as much as I'm willing to pay for any artist's new(ish) release. But on my way to the counter, I couldn't resist having a look at the compilation albums. Oh horror of horrors! There was a 'Best Of' Rod Stewart: The Early Years. (I know) I'm Losing You, Handbags and Gladrags, Gasoline Alley, Rod Stewart in the early 70s before Sailing and all the rubbish he came out with after he moved to America. I could hear his gravelly voice in my mind, I could hear the bluesy rock treatment, and I. wanted. that. CD. But the Neil lookalike was behind the cash register. I stood there warring with myself for 10 to 15 minutes, until finally, I scraped all my courage together and dumped Beth Orton, Rod Stewart and The The in front of him, silently daring him to make one of his infamous comments...and he didn't! He must have been distracted by something because he never said a word.

It'll be a long time before I'll show my face in there again.



( 12 Speak Like A Child — Shout To The Top )
Feb. 24th, 2004 03:55 am (UTC)
You GAVE AWAY your collection??!!!

Nothing ever leaves mine (except real dross I bought when I was 10). I couldn't bear to part with anything (even if they're taking over the flat).

I know the feeling in those shops though. You must have the same music snobbery as me! I find for buying the embarassing stuff, online is best.
Feb. 24th, 2004 04:54 am (UTC)
You GAVE AWAY your collection??!!!

With hindsight, not one of my saner decisions. But the girl I gave them to was my then best friend, and I had told her to basically take what she wanted...it never occured to me to think that she'd want the whole bloody lot! Unfortunately, the friendship hasn't lasted into the present day (she got a bit busy getting married and having kids, and found she didn't have that much in common with me anymore), so now I'm completely cut off from my Queen: Live in Tokyo and old T-Rex and Mott the Hoople stuff...not to mention my Teardrop Explodes, Fischer Z, and Echo & the Bunnymen (although these last are still available, on Internet if not in the shops but somehow I never get around to looking for them) albums. And I used to have every single freakin' 45 David Bowie ever released in the 60s! Makes you weep, don't it?

And yes, I am a total music snob. Though today, I don't care: I've got tickets to Ghost of the Robot and I'm not going to apologise for that fact!

Feb. 24th, 2004 05:03 am (UTC)
Well, I've seen Curiosity Killed the Cat and Duran Duran (though neither of these was recent), so I can't say a word!

I have no desire at all to see GotR, but at least there's something decent to look at.
Feb. 24th, 2004 05:20 am (UTC)
Curiosty Killed the Cat

::snorts in derisive manner like Attitude!Neil behind the counter::

Duran Duran

Imagine the look on my face when I heard that they were given a Brit Award this year, for their 'outstanding contribution to music'! They were alright in the 80s, but 'outstanding' isn't a word I'd associate with them. In fact, I liked Power Station a lot better!
Feb. 24th, 2004 05:23 am (UTC)
Admitting to knowing Power Station is an admission in itself. Yes. I do have the album...

No, I agree. Depeche Mode have contributed much more influence-wise, but they never get an award, do they?

As for CKTC, I never liked them. I went to support a friend. So there.
Feb. 24th, 2004 05:43 am (UTC)
DM have been sadly neglected...but maybe that's what keeps them going. Too much recognition can stiffle the creative genius!

I was just listening to their 1981 single releases the other day...God! They sounded so young! And hardly distinguishable from any of the other synthesizer bands out there at the time. Vince Clark leaving early on may actually have been the best thing that ever happened to them, although at the time I remember countless articles in music magazines predicting this would spell the end for the band as a whole.
Feb. 24th, 2004 06:02 am (UTC)
I think if Vince hadn't left all those Erasure songs would've been DM songs. Don't they all sound the same? I for one, am very glad to see the back of VC.

I find it very disturbing to think that I've been a fan for 19 years. I doesn't feel possible.
Feb. 24th, 2004 06:12 am (UTC)
I think if Vince hadn't left all those Erasure songs would've been DM songs.

Good grief! that's just too horrible to think about! My, didn't they have a lucky escape! I hate Erasure.

Time flies, doesn't it? I don't want to think about the fact that I've been listening to DM for 23 years already...mainly because I don't feel as if I'm that much older.
Feb. 24th, 2004 06:53 am (UTC)
Yeah, I still feel about nineteen.
Feb. 24th, 2004 07:00 am (UTC)
Yeah, that sounds about right. Nineteen forever, eh?
Feb. 24th, 2004 07:44 am (UTC)
Good on you for getting the GotR ticket, G! That way, you can warn Cass and I about how much cotton we need to use in our ears before MR. I'm a little apprehensive about the noise level at their concerts, although I really do want to see James in his "rock sex god" persona, as Aria calls it ;-)

I will have to start listening to "Mad Brilliant" again.
Feb. 24th, 2004 07:51 am (UTC)
That way, you can warn Cass and I about how much cotton we need to use in our ears before MR.

LOL! I'm actually hoping they'll tone it down a bit. De Melkweg isn't the roomiest of venues.
( 12 Speak Like A Child — Shout To The Top )