Friday, March 06, 2015

A to Z - W is for ... Warble ?

It's been a while ...

Not many more of these to go and what a good album to start with - it's The Wall by Pink Floyd. Ok, not the best album but it's the last good one from their 70s era. There's a bunch of classic songs here, like Another Brick In The Wall, Comfortably Numb and Goodbye Blue Sky. I'd recommend the movie adaptation with Bob Geldof as something reasonably worth watching.

Why am I not going nuts over this one ? Pink Floyd struggled somewhat as their band make up changed. 60s was wonderfully psychedelic with Syd Barrett. 70s was angry but tuneful with Roger Waters. 80s and onwards was dull and mediocre (although there is the occasional shining light on A Momentary Lapse Of Reason). This was their last great album. More later ...

Sophie Ellis-Bextor caught my eye again with Strictly Come Dancing reminding me of how well she can sing. She's in here with her latest album, Wanderlust. It's a decent album, albeit lacking a little in inspiration. But still a good listen. Highlight for me here is The Deer And The Wolf.

Oh my - here's a classic. It's the original War Of The Worlds with such legends as Justin Hayward, Richard Burton, David Essex but although I really enjoy Forever Autumn and will happily sing along to Thunderchild, the highlight for me is Spirit Of Man for Beth's (Julie Covington) vocals.

Up next is a couple of soundtracks from an old legend and its promising followup. I really need to continue the playthrough I started. It's Wasteland and Wasteland 2 and the soundtracks are suitably atmospheric.

Did I mention classic vocals ? Here's Enya with her debut album, Watermark. The highlight here will always be Orinoco Flow.

Another debut comes from The Ting Tings with We Started Nothing. I love this album, it's bright pop with lots of punk thrown in too. She's not the best singer, they're not the best band but I still love 'em nonetheless. I regret missing out on seeing them last year (feeling too grotty) but I'll hopefully catch them when they come back to Bristol. One highlight of many is Great DJ.

The classics keep coming - Frankie Goes To Hollywood had a burst of inspiration for Welcome To The Pleasuredome, the first half of which is excellent with tracks like the title track, Relax, Two Tribes, War with The Power Of Love being one of the closing tracks. Decent album but could have benefitted from losing some of the poorer tracks.

Kasabian aren't the female pop/rock/indie vocalist band I'm usually interested in, so their albums must be good. They're here for West Ryder Pauper Lunatic Asylum and my highlight is Fire.

Barbra Streisand is one I borrowed from my dad, she's here with What Matter's Most. She's an absolute legend of a singer and my highlight here is The Windmills Of Your Mind.

I got introduced to Aimee Mann by a good friend oh ... too many years ago. Her W album is Whatever, decent album but I didn't really pick out a highlight.

Arctic Monkeys have been quite prolific although I don't think they're as inspired now as when they came out with albums like Whatever People Say I Am, I'm Not. Great album, it sets a tone early and carries it through. They stand out cos they're different. And this album finishes off wonderfully with A Certain Romance.

Snow Patrol are the opposite, they started a bit weak and definitely improved. Their W is When It's Over We Still Have To Clear Up.

I've enjoyed listening to The White Stripes, they're here with White Blood Cells, again not as inspired as albums like Elephant.

Oh dear ... here comes a Christmas album - yep. I bought White Christmas. Moving swiftly on ...

An oldie but a goodie, classic crooner's Chris Isaak's Wicked Game is a classic album with songs like the title track but followed up with good ones like Blue Hotel too. Well worth a listen.

Paul Weller's Wild Wood is a decent album, although not a favourite. The title track is my highlight.

One of the best albums I have is Wish You Were Here from Pink Floyd. The tribute tracks here are outstanding. One of the strengths of the album is how the tracks link in to each other. Like the track Wish You Were Here starting up as someone changing the radio away from the previous track, jumping over several stations and finally finding a guitar playing. He then plays along to the guitar and off goes one of the best songs there is.

Last one ...

And it's a weird one. Look away now if easily frightened.
Yep. I own this album. And I thoroughly enjoy it. In fact, I may pick up Chas and Dave's collection soon too. There - I said it. Oh this one's a classic. Definitely English/Cornish cider swilling goodness. From The Combine Harvester Ooo-Arr-Ooo-Arr to I Am A Cider Drinker.

You haven't lived if you haven't heard this traditional brand of fun song.

And I'll run off now to join the rest of you who are no doubt, running away screaming ... (there's a song for that too !)

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