song of the year

Trying to think of the best song of the year was pretty hard. My only rule was that it had to be released as a track, a 7 inch single, download, whatever. In the end it was down to three – girlpool, Hannah Cohen and the new Lily and Madeline which I only heard today but has me all excited about music in 2016.

Yes, all females. Boys with guitars bore me these days. ūüôā

The winner is…..

 

next week > music video of the year.

If you’re looking for something fun, Mark Kozelek’s review of the year can be found here!

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! ūüėȬ†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….

another girl band

These days I only listen to female singers. I don’t know why exactly, but these last few months the coolest music has been girl-led. Feels good the world is waking up to this, today in good old Boston it is official Riot Grrl Day. Which seems like a crazy joke, but is true. The Boston mayor Marty Walsh said this¬†“The riot grrrl philosophy has never felt more relevant, with misogyny still rampant in many cultural spaces.”

You tell ’em, Marty.

Here’s some music I’ve been listening to these last few days, it’s all freedom rock. You can listen to them all below but first here’s why¬†:

MournJack has the best opening line I’ve heard for years “You think you’re awesome, I say you’re boring…” Break ups never sounded so much fun.

Colleen GreenPay Attention Ok, you might have heard this on the radio. It feels like 90’s veruca salt at the start.That’s ok with me ūüôā

Lily and Madelinethe wolf is free This is the most beautiful intoxicating song I’ve heard all year.

Joanna Gruesome –¬† last year Whirling guitars with an angry singer is always a hit in my house.

Girlpoolblah blah blah Another hip band. I’m sure this band are going to be huge.

Juliana Hatfield Threeif only we were dogs. I was really into this band back in 1993. This is their second album, released this year. A long time, but they sound as fresh as ever to me.

Speedy OrtizThe Graduates I’ve always liked the lyrics to Speedy Ortiz. The songs are all like little short stories that keeps you hanging on ever word.

Emma KupaHalf Sister I liked Standard Fare, and this is her first solo album all about her family. It’s sweet with just enough frustration and despair to keep things interesting.

PINStoo little too late I read about them in the Guardian, who know far more than I ever will on any subject, and they call them some kind of all girl punk revolutionaries so I’m not going to argue with that.

AlvvaysArchie, Marry me is really just such a great pop song. It makes me wish it was 1978 and I’d have this on 7 inch and play it again and again until it got scratched or Archie really did marry her.