Today we are onto the print versions of MOAT – Poison Stream reviews and we are off to Chicago and the Illinois Entertainer, the album reviewed by Jeff Elbel. And apart from it being another glowing review, we get to sit right next to the reissue of Japan’s Quiet Life (1979) which I recently bought. On the cover the cracking Rock singer Taylor Momsen whose band The Pretty Reckless seems to me to be the best of that genre for a while despite and possibly because of the cliches. The star of Gossip Girl and The Grinch Who Stole Christmas gave up acting to do this and I can see why with ‘that’ voice. I also bought the new album, Death By Rock And Roll (2021), excellent if you like that kind of thing. (Read Chris Roberts‘ review for the BBC at the end, see him succumb.)
But back to the MOAT reviews, we have one more print review left after this one with two more reviews on the way. There are also some interviews to share and a couple of written interviews I have still to do. It’s busy here in new home studio land, session land, French land, football relief land, In Deep Music Archive land, blog land, and us in Portugal land. Outside of here doesn’t exist yet, not until the pandemic is gone. I looked today and yesterday’s figures were down to 365 new cases, that’s one of the lowest for a while. I love it here but looking forward to seeing the world, friends, and family. I always thought that the leaving was better than the returning but maybe it can be both.
Jerome (Froese) sent me a song that he’s been working on from our new collaboration and now I have these new studio monitors I can actually listen to a song and have an idea of what it sounds like. It’s floaty, it’s very exciting, this collaboration covers some different ground and as the album is a mix of mostly instrumental, Jerome’s electronics with my guitars both enhanced and treated, it was interesting today to hear one of the tracks with vocals, I won’t say any more but it’s going to be great.
Out there in the street, a brisk wind defied the sun and the blue sky, we went out and found ourselves confronted by a bush full of happy spring sparrows (fluffed and clean). This is where the zoom lens comes in, close-ups of these beautiful little birds, mostly ignored as common but when you get a close-up picture of them they are as amazing as any animal that graces the earth. Twittering in the bushes, making one hell of a racket, nervous fluttering jumps and flapping their way in and out the bush with exquisite navigation skills, sitting atop the nearby bench basking in the later afternoon sun, what a life!
I took pictures of cranes and construction, massive metal monsters against the sky, and every time we walk past this building site towards the supermarket, the building has another floor, they work so fast. Who knows what it’s going to be but it’s something huge.
Note from Olivia, who edits the blog: “I wrote a poem last week, Feathers On The Façade, which coincidentally suits these last two paragraphs. Find the poem here.”
Sessions today with Chris in New Jersey and Jeff in Kent, Ohio, I have two songs from Brian Indiana, and 14 sessions this week. Olivia is illustrating the lyrics and I will be sending out the remaining postcards when she’s done. But still no CDs, we just can’t get an answer from FedEx or the customs about why there’s a delay. So, I’ll say it again, I can always autograph your CD out there in the future, and if you want the label to send you an unautographed version to end the wait just let Olivia know (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Last but not least Porto seems to be making some progress knocking out Juventus and their Portuguese star Ronaldo. We’ll see if Liverpool can recover their form against Leipzig tomorrow, although I’m not able to watch it as I’m in Portugal and the proxy isn’t kidding anyone. It works for Sky but not for BT Sport.
Music today took me to lots of potential places, Chris and I were talking about Bee Gees‘ classic Odessa from 1969, I put Steven Wilson’s The Raven That Refused To Sing (And Other Stories) (2013) on for Olivia when I jumped in the shower but the random was on and it turned into a mixed selection of his songs. I talked The Residents and ABBA with Jeff and from one extreme to the other we tried to figure out what went wrong with U2, I then wondered about Muse and concluded after listening to some of Songs Of Innocence (2014) and Simulation Theory (2020) that it must be the stadiums that lead them away – the desperate need to sound huge. I found solace in Kevin Ayers’ Bananamour (1973) and The Confessions Of Dr. Dream and Other Stories (1974). The former featuring the original version of the ex-band Box Of Birds track, Decadence (1999). Hard to sell to the world today and even these albums have mixed moments but the great moments really are great – if you like this kind of thing. And no, I didn’t listen to The Pretty Reckless today.