Sunday, September 30, 2007

New stuff

Some new stuff for fans of Robert Wyatt and "Canterbury" artists on Reel Recordings:
Kevin Ayers And The Whole World (with Wyatt):
"Hyde Park Free Concert 1970"
Pam and Gary Windo: "Avant Gardeners"
GF Fitzgerald & Lol Coxhill: "Echoes of Duneden".

Robert Wyatt is on Julian Benedikt's DVD "Play your own thing: A story of jazz in Europe" (Euroarts)

Saturday, September 29, 2007

Who is buying Robert Wyatt records?

We had a post about what must be one of the world's best Wyatt-covers: "Sea Song" by Rachel Unthank and the Winterset. In the last issue of Wire Wyatt seems to agree, and he obviously likes it. See the smiling man between two of them! The picture is taken by Allan Wilkinson.
If you wonder what kind of people buy records by Robert Wyatt, I hereby translate from Swedish to (my kind of) English (from the magazine Sonic, issue 36, 2007): " - Geography teachers. Maybe a couple of nurses. Yes, that's the way it is. Geography teachers and nurses buy my records. And old communists, because they become happy when you don't hate them".

PJ Harvey

PJ Harvey's "White chalk" is a perfect autumn record. No hard-hitting rock & roll on this one, but a kind of gloomy (or spooky?) ambience. My favourites so far; "The Mountain" and "When under ether", anaesthetic music.

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Wire and Sonic

There are great pieces on Robert Wyatt in Wire (number 284, October 2007) and Swedish Sonic (number 36, autumn 2007). The text in Wire is by David Toop and fantastic pictures by Jake Walters. In Sonic the text is by Andres Lokko, pictures by Lisa Milberg.
Subscribers to Sonic get a CD. On this CD the lucky bastards get Wyatt's "A Beautiful War" from "Comic Opera".

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Wyatt live - again!

According to NME Robert Wyatt just had to get up on the stage to sing with Dylan Howe Quintet last Saturday. Even if the piece in NME states that this is the first live vocal from RW in 25 years, we have seen him on David Gilmour's "In Concert" (2002). This is good news, and let it be the first step. Next: World Tour 2008, including several shows in Norway!

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Exit Music

Ian Rankin is pensioning John Rebus in "Exit Music", the 17th novel about the Edinburgh anti hero. Rebus' gift from his friends (?) at work is an I-Pod filled with good music in Rebus' taste, his Exit Music. It has been a good book series so far, but it may be best to finish now, while still on top? Artists and bands mentioned in the book:
Bert Jansch, Big Country, Bobbie Gentry, Caravan (as in “Canterbury’s finest”), Chuck Berry, Davey Graham, Deacon Blue, Dick Gaughan, Elbow, Fairport Convention, Frankie Miller, Hawkwind, Jack Bruce, Jackie Leven, James Blunt (As in “rather listening to Dick Gaughan than” JB), Jimmy Page, John Hiatt, John Martyn, John Renbourn, Johnny Cash, Kaizer Chiefs, The Killers, King Crimson, Leonard Cohen, Nazareth, Pentangle, Peter Hammill, Primal Scream, Randy Newman, Razorlight, Robert Plant, Rolling Stones, Rory Gallagher, Strokes, Sutherland Brothers, Talking Heads, Tangerine Dream, Tom Waits, Velvet Underground, Whisbone Ash, White Stripes, The Who.

I may be wrong, but I seem to remember that collegue Siobhan gave our hero a CD by the Manchester band Elbow in the previous book (Naming of the dead). Anyway, here they are with "Fallen Angel".

Saturday, September 22, 2007


Finally I got to hear Supersilent live. They have played together for 10 years, and I really don't know how much of the stuff that is totally improvised when they play. As Arve Henriksen said: We will play a sequence now, that may be on the new album, I don't know. But the music is pink this time" (see cover). These guys are in the band: Jarle Vespestad, Arve Henriksen, Helge Sten and Staale Storloekken. The concert was a mix of a hell of a noise, and supersilence, and thank God for my earplugs. Check out this band if you dare.

Friday, September 21, 2007

Reflections in tranquillity

Since New York Times now is free on the net, archives and all, I did my standard search for Robert Wyatt. That got me a review of the Kate Bush album “Aerial”, saying ”Heaven help a critic who compares Kate Bush to any man, but Aerial -- which has been described in The Observer of London as ''arguably, the most female album in the world'' -- contains the kind of carefully considered, unfashionable reflections in tranquillity generally identified with middle-aged men in pop like Robert Wyatt or Tom Waits”.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

The Unfairground.

Finally the new Kevin Ayers album found my mailbox. I hate to admit it, but I was attacked by nostalgia. This is top quality Ayers talking-singing, with good assistance from a bunch of youngsters from The Ladybug Transistor, Teenage Fanclub, Gorky's Zygotic Mynci, Trash Can Sinatras, Neutral Milk Hotel, and Architecture in Helsinki ( and throw in a couple of old geezers too).
Robert Wyatt appears in the form of "The Wyattron". The Wyattron might be something like this?

The Word

The so called "free CD" with the October issue of The Word has at least (!) two interesting numbers:
1: Robert Wyatt - Beautiful War (from Comic Opera)
2: Kevin Ayers - Cold Shoulder (from Unfairground).


The metal-band Enslaved meets noise/impro-duo Fe-Mail and becomes Trinacria. I heard them live yesterday in Bergen. A lot of sound for your money there, and a good show, both musically and visually. More pictures in my live-set on Flickr.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Rachel Unthank and The Winterset

Check out the folk/indie (?) band Rachel Unthank and The Winterset. These people make beautiful music (the little I have heard at least), and have cover versions of songs by people like Nick Drake, Bonnie Prince Billy and Robert Wyatt! Waytt's "Sea Song" is both on Myspace and on the new CD "The Bairns"

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

David Gilmour DVD

Robert Wyatt guests on "Then I Close My Eyes" on David Gilmours new DVD "Remember That Night. Live At The Royal Albert Hall". David Bowie sings "Comfortably Numb", Robert's number from the previous Gilmour DVD "David Gilmour in concert".

Monday, September 17, 2007

Kula Shaker

I'm not too familiar with Kula Shaker, but I always liked it when they were played on the radio. After listening to the new album "Strangefolk", I will check up on the old albums "K" and "Peasants, Pigs and Astronauts" too. This is so spiced with the 60s that you sometimes wonder where you heard it before. Strange enough, that doesn't matter at all. It's all Kula Shaker's brew. More on the band on MySpace and Wikipedia.

Sunday, September 16, 2007

Strange news from Mars

The guitar player Jon Larsen from Hot Club De Norvege, has been traveling in space, composing music in the spirit of Frank Zappa. It may be hard to believe, but it has been a safe travel. The band also have members who have been working with Zappa: Jon Larsen, Tommy Mars (!), Bruce Fowler, Arthur Barrow, Rob Waring, Jimmy Carl Black, Knut Reiersrud, Ole Morten Vågan and Håkon Mjåset Johansen. Read more on the project on MySpace. Those of us who have been listening to The Mothers Of Invention's "We're only in it for the money" appreciate Jimmy Carl Black's nod: "This is Jimmy Carl Black, the first indian on Mars".


Since we had a "Top Of The Pod" post before this one, let's talk about genres. It's never easy to describe music by genres, and I-Tunes wants to help us by describing the tunes for us. Often songs end up in the "Alternative" or "Indie" bags, but once in a while I-Tunes is creative! The Norwegian band Ultralyd is described as "Holiday". Check out Ultralyd on their MySpace site, and a nice holiday to you!

Top Of The Pod, September

The Shins - Gone For Good - Chutes Too Narrow
Richard Thompson – I’ll Never Give Up – Sweet Warrior
Richard Thompson – Dad’s Gonna Kill Me – Sweet Warrior
Neutral Milk Hotel – Holland 1945 – In The Aeroplane Over The Sea
Richard Thompson - Johnny’s Far Away – Sweet Warrior
The Shins – New Slang – Oh, Inverted World
CocoRosie – Japan – The Adventures Of Ghosthorne And Stillborn
Malcolm Middleton – We’re All Gonna Die – A Brighter Beat
Sissy Wish – Float – Sissy Wish
Candi Staton – I’m Just A Prisoner – Candi Staton
Cato Salsa/The Thing /Joe McPhee - Louie Louie – Two Bands And A Legend
Feist -Brandy Alexander - The Reminder
Regina Spektor – Fidelity – Begin To Hope
Kissing the lipless – The Shins – Chutes Too Narrow
Sissy Wish - Music On The Radio – Sissy Wish
David Bowie – Life On Mars – Hunky Dory
Herman Dune – This Summer – Giant
PJ Harvey – The Mess We’re In – Stories From The City, Stories From The Sea
Ai Phoenix – A Country Life In Autumn – I’ve Been Gone, Letter One
Built To Spill – Temporarily Blind – Keep It Like A Secret
Emily Haines and The Skeleton – Mostly Waving – Knives Don’t Have Your Back
Feist – How My Heart Behaves – The Reminder
Herman Dune – I Wish That I could See You Soon – Giant
Kaiser Chiefs – NaNaNaNaNaa – Employment
Richard Thompson – Poppy-Red – Sweet Warrior

Saturday, September 15, 2007

Linda Thompson

Linda Thompson's new album "Versatile heart" is in the shops now. You get folk, pop, country and the beautiful voice of Linda T. You also meet people like Teddy Thompson, Martha Wainwright, Martin Carthy, Eliza Carthy, John Kirkpatrick, Antony Haggarty and Peter Blegvad, who made the cover! I can not see any reason at all not to buy this album. "Give me a sad song"!
On her former husband, Linda says "---Richard Thompson, a little known, but extremely useful guitarist."


My local newspaper ("Bergens Tidende") tells me it is British Open (for Brass Bands?) this weekend, and The Grimethorpe Colliery Band hires a Norwegian drummer (Øyvind Øksnes, 17 years old). I understand brass bands were popular in mining towns, and have seen "Brassed off" of course. Once again, all this chit-chat just to make a Wyatt-connection (I'm afraid my synapses have gone wild), and show the beautiful cover of the split-7" with Grimethorpe Colliery Brass Band.

Friday, September 14, 2007

The freewheelin' Robert Wyatt

I finally got hold of the new Uncut issue (October) with the Wyatt interview. It is four pages with the usual stuff on drinking, smoking, getting thrown out of Soft Machine and falling out of windows, and not much on the new album. But it's OK, nice pictures and all. RW on drumming:"Drumming is like being the engine of a car. Somebody else has to be the car". Drive on.

Arve Henriksen on tour

The Norwegian trumpeter Arve Henriksen plays Cork (31st Oct.) and Dublin (1st Nov.). Check that cool poster. The portrait photographer is obviously very talented!

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Stay tuned!

Anja Garbarek’s “Stay Tuned” is one of my favourite songs. It’s from the album “Smiling and waving”, where Robert Wyatt sings “The Diver”. The first song on Wyatt’s “Comic Opera” (october release) is a fine version of this song . Join Strongcomet to get som tastes of the new album.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Mojo and Uncut, October issues

The October issue of Mojo has a CD called "In search of Syd". On this one you will find Soft Machine's "I should have known" (from "Jet Propelled Photographs"). There is also a Kevin Ayers track called "Oh! Wot a dream" from "Bananamour" (Wyatt is not on that track, but on another one on Ayer's album).

In Uncut's October issue they have an interview with Robert Wyatt. I'm still waiting for that magazine!

Saint Thomas

Sad news today: Norwegian artist Saint Thomas (St. Thomas, Thomas Hansen) died at the age of 31. We thank Saint Thomas for a lot of nice songs, strange as a some of them were. I heard him live only once, warming up for Lambchop in Bergen, Norway. During one song a couple of Lambchop members did a pantomime act, to illustrate the song. Hilarious! He was a troubled man, so may he rest in peace.

Monday, September 10, 2007

Brötzmann, Nilssen-Love, Gustafsson

We had a post on Brötzmann, Nilssen-Love, Gustafsson's new album "The Fat Is Gone" in august. Here is a piece from the release concert in Oslo.

Sunday, September 9, 2007

Catholic Architecture

Robert Wyatt recorded by French television in 1990. The song is from Dondestan (1991).

Arve Henriksen

Arve Henriksen interviewed in Sarajevo, on improvisation and "sundscapes".

Saturday, September 8, 2007

PJ Harvey

PJ Harvey was in Oslo to promote her new album "White Chalk". She performed 5 songs, that was recorded by the Norwegian broadcasting company. One of them, "The Mountain", is out there for you to watch.

Friday, September 7, 2007

Kevin Ayers signs, September 11

The new album from Kevin Ayers (Unfairground) is soon in the stores. Do you want an autographed copy, see this message from the Uncut website:"The signing will take place at the Talbot Road branch of Rough Trade Records, next Tuesday, September 11 at 6pm."
Hey-we're stuck in Norway!

Jean-Philippe Ramos

Jean-Philippe Ramos plays saxes and computers to Robert Wyatt songs, and present them as "the chansons of robert wyatt et moi...".
From the comments to "Sea song" on YouTube:
Comment: "this is not Wyatt. it sucks!"
Ramos: "of course, it's me"

Thursday, September 6, 2007

Jazz on the radio

If you like, you may listen to jazz all day long on the net-radio from the Norwegian Broadcasting Co (NRK). The webpages are in Norwegian of course, but click on "Hør NRK Jazz" ("Listen to NRK Jazz"). Beware of news bulletins in Norwegian.

Wednesday, September 5, 2007

Waterson Carthy

I just have to tell you these people were in Bergen this monday, performing in a small club: Norma Waterson (voc), Martin Carthy (g,voc) and Saul Rose (accordion and son in law!). Wow! It was nice hearing them in a relaxed setting, with no electricity involved and a listening audience. I once heard them (Norma Waterson, Martin Carthy and Eliza Carthy) in front of a drunken audience at the club Garage in Bergen, warming up for Lindisfarne! Terrible audience then, sweet performers still.

Tuesday, September 4, 2007

"Hope I die before I get old"?

Do you play in a band? Pray that you never hit it big. The chances of you dying young is a lot bigger if you get famous. I don't think this issue of Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health is published yet, but you better dip into this piece of science when it's out: “Elvis to Eminem: quantifying the price of fame through early mortality of European and North American rock and pop stars”. Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health, 2007;61:896–901.

Monday, September 3, 2007

Private Idaho

When some people claim that senators from Idaho don't behave in public toilets, we need a soundtrack. B-52's "Private Idaho" is a party of a song, so sing along please.


Hoo Hoo Hoo Hoo Hoo Hoo Hoo Hoo Hoo
You're living in your own Private Idaho
Living in your own Private Idaho
Underground like a wild potato.
Don't go on the patio.
Beware of the pool,
blue bottomless pool.
It leads you straight
right throught the gate
that opens on the pool.
You're living in your own Private Idaho.
You're living in your own Private Idaho.

Keep off the path, beware the gate,
watch out for signs that say "hidden driveways".
Don't let the chlorine in your eyes
blind you to the awful surprise
that's waitin' for you at
the bottom of the bottomless blue blue blue pool.

You're livin in your own Private Idaho. Idaho.
You're out of control, the rivers that roll,
you fell into the water and down to Idaho.
Get out of that state,
get out of that state you're in.
You better beware.

You're living in your own Private Idaho.
You're living in your own Private Idaho.

Keep off the patio,
keep off the path.
The lawn may be green
but you better not be seen
walkin' through the gate that leads you down,
down to a pool fraught with danger
is a pool full of strangers.

You're living in your own Private Idaho,
where do I go from here to a better state than this.
Well, don't be blind to the big surprise
swimming round and round like the deadly hand
of a radium clock, at the bottom, of the pool.

Woah oh oh woah oh oh woah oh oh
Ah ah ah ah ah ah ah ah
Get out of that state
Get out of that state
You're living in your own Private Idaho,
livin in your own Private.... Idaho

Sunday, September 2, 2007


I hope "shuttlecock" is the right description on a badminton ball. In Norwegian it's "featherball" (fjærball). Interesting, heh? Anyway, the stencil made me smile in the rain.