6am – 10am- The journey from bed to desk
It’s 9am and we’re off with Ann Sexton’s Have A Little Mercy On Me via my iPod and shuffle.
Up until this now there has been no recorded music this morning. Today wasn’t a running day, so no playlists, the radio is on Radio 4 until I hit the snooze button (building up a rhythm of a best every nine minutes). The only music has been the sound of the birds in the garden and a gaggle of geese honking off to work in the local park.
So here I am on the bus, and Ann has given way to Poison Candy Heart by Mark Mulcahy- a guy I like very much as recommended to me by another guy I like very much at work.
This is followed by I don’t need you – My Bloody Valentine and Pulp’s I-Spy.
I love the shuffle function on the iPod. When I can’t think my way through the choice this is my default option.
Although albums are still important, last night’s journey home was soundtracked by the wonderful Do To The Beast by The Afghan Whigs.. I’m seeing them tonight in Camden, and so it was a run through to see if I could remember song titles, etc. I dare say it will get played again today.
Off the bus at Penge West and onto the platform, as Jarvis reaches his angry sexvengeance climax.. Adem is up next with Sea of tranquility- off an album I love. I wish he would get something out again soon.
Last year when I did this I was on my phone as my iPod had died a few days before- diagnosis Heatstroke- and I believed that would be the move that moved me over to just carrying one device, using Spotify more and it’s just not happened.
Firstly the iPod got fixed, and I like having a large chunk of my collection with me.. Nowhere near it all, but enough to keep me going for a good six solid months, if not more. secondly, as much as a I love Spotify and happily pay for the premium service to access stuff via the app, etc it requires too much management to be organised with it. I discover and get so much music as a result of it, but without pre-deciding what to use it for it’s useless to me for commuting.
Throwing Muses’ Graffiti has just finished and been replaced with a demo of an old Liz Phair Song-21 instrumental. Funny how shuffle works, I played the last Liz Phair album on the way to work yesterday.
That’s the alternative to shuffle, is to go back over albums I don’t play as much and see if they justify the space on the iPod, and sorry Liz, but as much as I love you, that album is coming off when I next connect to my laptop/iTunes.
After Liz, it’s The Wedding Present and Brassneck. It’s all DM- tastic and as much as I love it, I’m skipping it. It’s not familiarity and contempt among the beast with two backs, but it’s safe to say I know this backwards.
It gives way to a bootleg of Greg Dulli and Steve Kilbey playing Golden Boy from Greg’s solo album on piano. Awful sound quality, but a lovely song. Totally different vibe to the album. I’ve been meaning to play this boot for a while, but y’know…
Crikey, there’s a lot of love for 90’s Alt artists, as it’s now 500,000 Warnings by Buffalo Tom. Honestly, there’s loads of other stuff on my iPod, but sod it, this is still good stuff and makes a stupendous racket -Volume at a respectful to fellow passengers level, of course.
Ah, one I don’t really know- The Loneliest Guy by David Bowie. Don’t really know this period of Bowie well at all, but this is nice enough, and he’s always welcome on here.
Nearly at work now, so time for a couple more. And it’s Otis singing These Arms of Mine. How fucking good is this? I reckon if I ignore anyone I see in the lift I might get another song in. I often have to stop a song halfway through and while it’s easy to start again, it does feel like it cheapens the whole thing.
What’s gonna follow that..? What can? Certainly not Train Round The Bend by the Velvets. Crikey, not their finest work, but then it’s not utter shite either.
When I get into the office it will be a switch from personal, headphone based stuff to the office Spotify playlist – Radio Kling Klang. Instigated a couple of weeks ago now to avoid people hogging the speakers with the same sort of thing. Now we all pile stuff on to one playlist and put it on shuffle. Much more democratic. It’s up to 400 hours of stuff so far..as it’s on my Spotify account I can still take my ball back if something is too awful,
but it’s not happened yet. Yet!!
One more stop and Laura Marling is singing about The Captain and the Hourglass. I’d forgotten this album, but that’s the beauty of shuffle- all these gems popping up as reminders.
That segues into REM and All The Right Friends from Dead Letter Office.
Off the train with Nomads by Howlin’ Rain to keep me company as I loiter outside the building for a minute, which reminds me to sneak Comets On Fire onto Radio KK.
10 – 1 – Desk to lunch
Headphones are off, and alongside the sound of rattling fans and various construction work in Shoreditch is the sound of Radio Kling Klang. I’m not going to be able to keep a note of everything, but it’s started with Dye by Tycho..
It’s now 12 and I’ve not really noticed many songs playing in the background, but When Two Doves Cry has just caught my attention. It’s early days of using this playlist, and having instigated it I feel bad about plugging headphones in and going off on my own, but there’s some boring work coming up, so I will have to switch to a closed world soon.
Long afternoon of not much listening, despite the playlist winding on through the, er, list.
At 6 on the dot I was out the door to go see the Whigs and listened to their new album on the way. I got to the pub to meet some fans that have travelled from far and wide and noticed Godspeed You Black Emperor playing – only in Camden, but not much else among the chat about how many gigs you’ve seen by The whigs and which rare 7″ you have. Always a guaranteed hackle raiser for me. Just listen to the fucking songs, who care on which format you have it.
Th gig itself was spectacular, although it appears to have raised comments among fans about the veracity of calling themselves the Afghan Whigs, seeing as they are missing a key member. As far as I can tell, it was near perfect version of old songs, and new ones played really well. I loved it, and I’m pretty sure that spirits moved through me during Faded.
On the way home I listened to an old bootleg of the Whigs for a bit, then got notified that I had been given a ‘T’ on Facebook. This appears to be a movement that fills FB with music not pictures of babies, etc. I don’t really like movements on FB, but can get behind this one. I chose Thrum’s So Glad and ended up playing it at least ten times on the way home. This got me to Midnight.
Here endeth the day.