Posts Tagged ‘Baroque Hoedown’

music

New psych find – the excellent West Coast Gnome covers The Three O’ Clock

By Stefano on May 22nd, 2013

In my opinion one of the best records of the 1980s was The Three O’Clock’s incendiary debut EP come LP Baroque Hoedown. And that LP climaxed with one of their finest tunes – a slow burning droney slice of psych called As Real As Real .

Well the band’s recent rebirth – which includes festival appearances in the US and a new collection of hits and rarities – has inspired someone with the unlikely moniker of West Coast Gnome to cover As Real As Real, and it almost gives the original a run for its money.

It might be recorded in the fella’s garage and there’s none of the original version’s inspired signature swirly keyboard runs, but it’s an intoxicating listen nevertheless. Mr Gnome even messes with the end a little incorporating what sounds like snatches of The Byrds’ Eight Miles High on the outro. It is excellent stuff.

It turns out that West Coast Gnome is rather talented too. His collection of songs which you can listen to on Soundcloud hover somewhere between the jangly 60s vibe of The Searchers or in the case of Paisley Daze – The Byrds and British C86 bands like The Razorcuts and very early bowl cut era Primal Scream.

There’s hint of Beatley/Bee Gees psych on Mr Bee and some wonderful melodic twists and turns on the stand out Saturday Sunshine.

All the tracks have been uploaded fairly recently, so let’s hope that Mr Gnome gets a chance to make his own Younger Than Yesterday (or Sonic Flower Groove) very soon.



music

The Three O’Clock announce rarities album and star on US TV show

By Stefano on April 11th, 2013

Some big news this week from The Three O’Clock – quite possibly the 80s finest pop psych band. The Paisley Undergrounders, who reformed this year to play Coachella (and please, please, please some UK dates too), have announced the release of a new old album which pairs many of their most popular songs with a some rarities.

Titled The Hidden World Revealed the album, which is due in June, features a slew of alternate versions, rarities that only made the European release of their epic debut Baroque Hoedown and more.

In a news release announcing the album, drummer Danny Benair says:

“The Hidden World Revealed takes you from the early days of recording in Michael Quercio’s garage to the days leading up to Arrive Without Traveling and beyond. A combination of the well-known and the unknown. The completist guide to The Three O’Clock — ten years in the making 30 plus years of recording. . . whoosh!

The tracklist is as follows

1. “All In Good Time”
2. “With A Cantaloupe Girlfriend”
3. “In Love In Too”
4. “Stupid Einstein”
5. “Lucifer Sam”
6. “Rodney On The ROQ Commercial” *
7. “Jet Fighter”
8. “When Lightening Starts” (Alternate Version) *
9. “Sound Surrounds” (Demo)*
10. “Around The World”
11. “On My Own” (with Strings) *
12. “I Go Wild” (Alternate Version) *
13. “In My Own Time” (Alternate Version) *
14. “Why Cream Curdles In Orange Tea” *
15. “A Day In Erotica” (Alternate Version) *
16. “Jennifer Only” (Home Demo) * – The Salvation Army
17. “The Girl With The Guitar (Says Oh Yeah)” (Demo) *
18. “Seeing Is Believing”
19. “Regina Caeli”
20. “Feel A Whole Lot Better”

The band also appeared on an American chat show Conan, playing With A Canteloupe Girlfriend, the opening song on Baroque Hoedown – and they sound great.

The band last played a date in the UK in Dingwalls, Camden in 1985. Weirdly enough the support band on the bill were locals called The Thrashing Doves – whose single, Beautiful Imbalance got the thumbs up from a certain female politician who recently died, when she appeared on TV kids programme Saturday Superstore. Odd…

The-Three-OClock



Gadgets, music

The MP3 player is dying, but vinyl record sales are through the roof

By Stefano on December 27th, 2012

Got an MP3 player? Chances are you don’t use it a great deal as it has been kind of superseded by the Swiss Army Knife of gadgets – the smartphone. With Spotify on mobile devices as well as the seamless integration of iTunes on the iPhone, there doesn’t really appear to be much of a need for standalone MP3 players.

And their decline has been confirmed by figures today from research organisation Mintel which says that sales of MP3 players have fallen by nearly a fifth to £381 million this year compared to 2011. Mintel predicts that sales will halve again by 2017 and virtually disappear within five years.

Samuel Gee, a technology analyst at Mintel, told The Telegraph that the decline in MP3 sales is “unlikely to reverse”.

“It is impossible to talk about the current PMP market without extensive reference to smartphones. The devices have directly contributed to the sharp decline in the value of PMP sales.”

He added that MP3 players are being “steadily outshone” by increasingly affordable new technologies, like smartphones.

I am guessing here, but it would seem that the one MP3 player that still sells well is the iPod nano which maintains a significant share of young women and pre-teens.

One music format which appears to be making a very real comeback is vinyl records. In a wonderful article in The Guardian John Harris put the case for vinyl records and highlights their recent rise in popularity.

We await conclusive British figures for 2012, but last year there was a quantum leap in sales of new vinyl albums, which were 44% up on the figures for 2010. Anecdotal evidence suggests the consumers responsible are not just hard-bitten types – men, usually – of a certain age, but much younger people. And the phenomenon extends across the industrialised world: the same pattern is evident in the UK, the US, Australia, Germany – and even cash-strapped Spain.

Harris makes the point that digital music leaves us in a state of twitchy impatience – hands hovering over the mouse which will move us to the next track. This obviously isn’t the case with vinyl records.

We’ll look at the demise of CD and whether that is a good or bad thing, later in the week. In the meantime I am off to give the above record a spin.




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