Friday, December 19, 2003

2003 has been a strange year music wise with no real stand-out albums, a point demonstrated by the lack of any consensus across all those best of year critics polls. (Although that intriguing nu-Prince hiphop crossover album by OutKast is prominent in many of them). For what it's worth, here's my list of seven albums that really impressed me this year.

- Cat Power - 'You are Free'
- M Ward - 'The Transfiguration of Vincent'
- Radiohead - 'Hail to the Thief'
- Calexico 'Feast of Wire'
- Kings of Leon 'Youth and Young Manhood'
- Evan Dando 'Baby I'm Bored'
- My Morning Jacket - 'It Still Moves'

So, if you don't hear from me before then have a great Christmas. See you in the new year...

Thursday, December 18, 2003

Here's an interesting article about controversial photographer Jock Sturges and an exhibition of his prints of Connemara schoolchildren. The photographs may have been critically acclaimed but he's not welcome back in Galway.
Neil Warner of Warner Corporate Photography has some nice aerial shots of Galway available to send as e-cards. Check them out.

Tuesday, December 16, 2003

Wow...there's nearly a thousand Irish phone blogs already. Who would have thunk it?

Tuesday, December 09, 2003

Bid for Tidings of Comfort and Joy on eBay...
F.Y.I. Aer Lingus sale on today with flights to and from Ireland from €1.
There's two Irish acts in the top ten of's best albums of 2003 as selected by their editors. Unfortunately, although competent and enjoyable, both of those albums are seriously overrated. Oh, and the Chieftains are at no. 30 too...

Monday, December 08, 2003

I picked up the two new EP's from Ryan Adams over the weekend - Love is Hell parts 1 and 2. I'm happy to say that although their quality is inconsistent, both EPs feature several songs which can stand with his best work and which are far superior to anything on his current official new proper album 'Rock N' Roll'. Interestingly one of the better songs is 'English Girls Approximately' - a splendid number featuring Marianne Faithfull on backing vocals and which from the lyrics I can only assume is addressed to Beth Orton - whom he is rumoured to have had a brief fling with while helping her out on her album 'Daybreaker'. Here's the verse which clinches it:-
Tall drink of water, she's a Norfolk waterfall
Little daybreaker, she's a shootin' like a cannonball
Crazy like a rocket when you're coming through my radio
Kept me in your bed till the wintertime turned to fall
Fall time coming, and I guess my little bird can sing
Come on Elizabeth, a come on a Bethany
Come on further, I'm tired and I want to sleep
My little dove do, and I guess she was done with me
Said you didn't love me, it was right on time, I was just about to tell you that it'll be alright
Said you didn't love me, didn't want a thing, English girls can be so mean
But ohh, look at you now
Ohh, look at you now
Mmmm, best I've ever seen
Just a tall drink of water, just a-pourin' on down the sink.

The full lyrics are here. You can listen to the song in the discography section of Ryans official site - the complete albums are being streamed.

Friday, December 05, 2003

From Canadian TV archives: "Punk Rock is a term based on contempt...". Chat show interview with Iggy Pop from 1977.
Courtesy of the BBC: The ten most embarrassing political moments. Vote for your favourite. I think the classic Bush interview will take some beating.

Thursday, December 04, 2003

From a couple of weeks backs. A short piece in The Guardian on blogs by music writers.
Here's a brilliant idea. Seamless City - a 30 mile long continuous portrait of San Francisco. Via Incoming Signals

Monday, December 01, 2003

I hadn't realised there is a separatist movement currently active within Galway and Mayo. Here's their website.
John Lydon to attempt to revitalise his career by appearing in 'I'm a Celebrity, get me out of here'?. Didn't he used to have some credibility...even a teenie weenie bit?