Track of the Year

I’m so happy it’s the julie ruin, and this was almost my album of the year. I’ve written so much about Kathleen Hanna there’s little more to say, so here is the single. She still has the coolest voice around. The album, hit reset, which strangely enough I bought on cassette, has so many amazing songs on, I think it’s one of her best albums to date.

i think you’re awesome

I’m back from summer adventures overseas, boat trips and lost car keys, overheated coffee and a 48 hour fever in Berlin, reading the New York Times and drinking sparkling water, 9 hour car trips and table tennis, letters to Salinger and peppermint ice cream. Yep, that’s how we roll.

Then there’s the music. I’ve been away, I don’t know what’s going on. It looks like those of you who stuck around saw some amazing live music.

Mark Kozelek with Thurston Moore which really seems crazy, and a couple of years ago an impossible match. But with x-sy drummer Steve Shelley working with MK, somehow this now makes perfect sense. A great song, Thurston plays the part perfectly and Kozelek is as cool/crazy as ever.

Then there was this. Kathleen Hanna played some songs at a music festival too, and everybody went nuts. I saw her a few months ago in Brighton, and I’m just so happy she’s getting better, she’s healthy and she can still write songs like this.

Kathleen Hanna is also re-releasing the Bikini Kill demos, first out back in 1991. It’s out on cd, record and cassette. I cant wait to hear this. You can find out more info here. Oh, and next year there is a new mark kozelek album…of course there is…here are the tracks for the Jesu/Mark Kozelek album out Feb 2016, that’s just half a year away now 🙂

Good Morning My Love
Carondelet
A Song Of Shadows
Last Night I Rocked The Room Like Elvis And Had Them Laughing Like Richard Pryor
Fragile
Father’s Day
Sally
America’s Most Wanted Mark Kozelek And John Dillinger
Exodus

voice + melody = love

I must begin by apologising for long delay in writing. Political (dis) engagement, trips to Sheffield, quick trip to Romania, fun family weekends in London, visits from relatives, working at the school, watching cool films. late night conversations and the like that I’ve simply just had no time to write about how rad the new girlpool album is! 😉 So click on those links if you’re bored, but do come back because I’m addicted to making lists like this :

1. The new girlpool album really is rad. Play it loud and dance away.

2. But the new sun kil moon album is even better. Play it soft and cry.

3. I saw Kathleen Hanna’s band Julie Ruin in Brighton a couple of weeks ago. It was so much fun, the music is so infectious my 9 year old son and I are driving around the sleepy Sussex villages blasting it out at the moment. She’s also, apparently, making a new album and just this week there’s a brand new fascinating interview with Ms Hanna in Pitchfork where she talks about the challengers of making music with a chronic illness and why she’s sick of hearing about her “supportive” husband. She makes a pretty good point really that everyone tells her how cool and great her husband is because he pretty much had to be her full-time carer, and although she says he is of course supportive and totally cool, she said if it was the other way round everyone would expect the wife to be the supportive one for the sick husband, but when it’s the other way round everybody makes a big deal about the “supportive and caring” husband, when it should naturally be this way. She says it a lot better than I have just now. Check it out.

4. I sent my first payment for the Brighton Writers 2 year course. It gives me two years to write a book. It’s suppose to make-or-break writers, and some have gone on from this course to win the booker prize and all that. Others have faded into obscurity

5. I was reminded of just how epic Norah Jones is. I listen again and again to her cd’s, and I’m often so transfixed by the sheer beauty of her voice and the brilliant love-gone-sour lyrics it just gives me goosebumps. She was on David Letterman a few weeks ago, when he did his final shows, and she played an old song that was simply gorgeous. So gorgeous I’ve put it below. Sorry those hoping for the Kathleen Hanna girl punk, or the hipster lo-fi indie of girlpool that will have to come another time.  I’ve always been a sucker for voice and melody and you can’t beat Norah Jones at that….

just my kind of hope

Had a crazy day, a whole range of emotions and feelings thrown in today. Some edited highlights included hanging out with the jet setter since 6am, trying to fix stereo cable that was chewed off by little ol’ Pluto the hamster. Finishing off a brilliant political spy thriller by John Le Carre, drinking coffee. Driving around counting the circus posters, and getting all sad reading the Daily Mail (don’t ask) and watching part of a football match I don’t understand. Trains to Germany. Flights to Spain. Our Children French film. Intensity. Fragments of a day I can’t keep.

But that’s not why you’re here. You’re here to listen to this super rad song by the always inspiring, always brilliant Kathleen Hanna. It’s a little love song to her husband, and it might just melt your heart. I’m putting it up because of course it’s cooooool, but also because Ms Hanna is suffering a relapse from the Lyme Disease that crippled le tigre a few years ago, and she’s had to cancel her European tour. I spent a blissful childhood in a kind of wild forest, I was always out – hours every day – running around and exploring the forest with my dogs, and ticks were part of life but I never thought a tick bite could really destroy your life. I hope she’s better soon.

“The punk singer” a documentary about Bikini Kill, Le Tigre, Kathleen Hanna is out on dvd on 23 June, and I’ve already reserved my copy.

Talking of “rock” dvds, I saw Mark Kozelek’s the other day rich which was full of subtle, beautiful, intoxicating sadness and hopeful daydreams of lost memories and the passing of time. Perfect for days like these.

xo

Kathleen Hanna for president

I was reading in the Sunday newspaper about Hilary Clinton’s chances of running for US presidency in 2016, and as cool as that sounds, I’m more excited about the new Julie Ruin due out this autumn.

In a world where so many musicians who have interesting lives, inspired people, did crazy things, and just had that effortless cool streak running through them are now pushing 70 it’s good to celebrate the sheer radness of Kathleen Hanna. She of Bikini kill, she of Le tigre, and now Julie Ruin. The punk rock feminist married, yes married because whoever said feminists can’t get married surely deny romance and love, to Mike D of the beastie boys, and she’s still standing up for freedom and women’s rights. Her live shows are always full on fun, and the new album Run Fast will be out 3 September. The video is from the new album, and in my world this, and not daft punk, should be the dancefloor soundtrack of the summer! Oh yes, Kathleen Hanna for president.