As the airwaves were bustling with highlights from Bradford Festival, we didn’t have a show last month. Instead we shared The Record Club’s June radio show, 33 1/3 Revolutions which focuses on politics and social commentary in music.
On this month’s show we have some great new releases, many of which tied in very nicely with my general feeling of ‘what the F?’ lately because, you know, the world’s a mess.
Here’s what we played!
THE KING BLUES – We Are Fucking Angry
VIV ALBERTINE – Still England
MICHAEL KIWANUKA – Black Man in a White World
FOLD – Something Gives
LUCY DACUS – I Don’t Wanna Be Funny Anymore
NORTH SEA RADIO ORCHESTRA – The British Road
VINCENT VOCODER VOICE – 500,000 Hymnals
HOCKEYSMITH – Let’s Dagger
ANOHNI – WDYSMFTE
LAPSLEY – Operator
RIZ MC – Englistan
METHYL ETHEL – Rogues
TAU – Mo Anam Cara
BEYONCE feat. JACK WHITE – Don’t Hurt Yourself
A couple of weeks ago NME announced their Top 100 albums of the decade list. It caused me to raise a “Really..?!Â Er…if you say so” eyebrow, but didn’t stir as much emotion in me as it did with Phil Cope, who perspicaciously observed that there list was rather too white.
Since then two other things have happened in NME world that have indeed stirred me to feelÂ more than a little annoyed.
Last week a news item on nme.com announced that “legendary blues guitarist” Chuck Berry had postponing his tour.Â “Legendary f***ing blues guitarist” thought I?!!!Â How ignorant is that?!Â The man pretty much defined rock and roll, writing and performing some of the genre’s greatest songs, and influencing a whole bunch of white kids, including 4 from Liverpool, to write songs of their own.Â Calling him a “legendary blues guitarist” is like calling Kurt Cobain a “legendary heavy metal guitarist” – and I’m sure the uber-cool NME would never be so silly as to do that.Â I actually put a comment on their website saying something similar, but they didn’t publish it.
Now, today NME have declared their 100 favourite tunes of the decade.Â Number 1 is Beyonce.Â “Be-f***ng-yonce..?!” thought I?Â Is she not just a symptom of the decline of American RnB into of artists completely detached from their listeners, and music devoid of meaning?Â Has this not just become the genre of IFMITYWEB (I’m Far More Important Than You Will Ever Be)?Â Maybe I’m missing something though, as several of my friends have today said that Crazy In Love is a good tune.Â I tried listening to it on Spotify but 2 minutes is all I could bear.
At least NME have redressed some of the racial balance after their top albums list.Â But really, I mean 15-20 years ago I used to respect the NME for bringing me news and views of what was happening left-of-centre, and quite frankly I’m shocked at just how far NME has moved from this to a more populist stance.Â I know, even 10 or 20 years ago NME were a bit of a trend chaser, but it has just got silly now.
I’ve not read the NME properly for years.Â I just use their website for a decent source of music news.Â Can anyone suggest another good source of music news so I can leave them well behind me?