what i'm currently listening to / january 2000
The Cure


Wish - The Cure. particularly the following tracks : no 4. From The Edge Of The Deep Green Sea / no 6. Doing The Unstuck / no 9. A Letter To Elise. This is a brilliant album - rock to poppy/melodic to melancholy then rock again. 

Also from The Cure. Standing On A Beach - The Singles. Memorable for no 13. The Lovecats / no 15. In Between Days / no 16. Close To Me. Don't like the earlier singles too much such as no 1. Killing An Arab. Robert Smith hasn't developed that cracked lovely voice he used during Wish and Head On The Door just yet.  

Disintegration - The Cure. Only just purchased and lovely in that forlorn love-lost kind of way. I can see endless hours of depression brought on by this record. The title track is superb : 'oh i miss the kiss of treachery the shameless kiss of vanity the soft and the black and the velvety up tight against the side of me and mouth and eyes and heart all blood and run in thickening streams of greed as bit by bit it starts the need to just let go my party piece.' - Disintegration.

For more on The Cure.  



nina simone released. i'm desperately trying to 'egalitarianise' my collection and nina simone seemed like a good choice. the backlash blues / i shall be released / why ? (the king of love is dead) all wonderfully memorable. particularly why ? (the king of love is dead) dedicated to martin luther king. breathtaking. 

For an article on nina simone which makes interesting reading click here : Blue, Bitter & Broke. An excerpt : "She drinks a bottle of Baileys for breakfast, despises everyone around her and likes to shoot at the neighbour's kids.." There's possibly nothing sadder than watching the decline of a diva.


  The Soul Of Bobby Womack. Stop On By. seriously. this is a classic, covering the classics. discovered him on the Jackie Brown soundtrack with Across 110th Street. He does an earlier acoustic version of this which is superb. but nothing can beat no 11. Woman's Gotta Have It. It is superb. Ben Harper should cover it. Speaking of which... 


Ben Harper Burn To Shine - Ben Harper and the Innocent Criminals. Like his earlier records which showed some signs of it, this one definitely demonstrates Ben Harper going for a much harder sound and rockier edge. There's even some hill-billy leanings (i'm sure there's a proper musical term for that) and even some rap. But like his earlier records there is still the sweet soulful sounds of earlier more familiar Ben Harper. For instance no 2. The Woman In You and no 4. Two Hands Of A Prayer will have you up close to the speakers and the player on repeat. It's a different record from the earlier ones, and shows Ben Harper venturing into new territory. I don't particularly dig the artwork on the inlay though - he takes the Wild West theme a bit too far for my liking me thinks. But it shouldn't detract from what is a great record full of experimentation.



The Contino Sessions - Death in Vegas. Admittedly I haven't been able to get through much of it. The cd-extra for play on the computer is fucking disturbing. A image slide show of profiles of Americans who died on one particular date. From what I've heard so far - dark, heavy and guitar-laden. Perhaps not in the right mood to listen to it quite yet.


Beck Midnite Vultures era Midnite Vultures - Beck. Prince-esque, strange keyboard sounds, and quite 80s. But it works. Remarkable synth-pop is Midnite Vultures. The very good Beck site is located here : , or find his live sessions at in the archive sections. The KCRW archives at hosts one of the largest collection of live studio performances from artists such as Jeff Buckley, to Ben Harper, to Radiohead, to Beck, to Air and much more. Highly recommended but you will need RealPlayer installed. [And hands up who else suffered through the American Music Awards (ala Mariah Carey, boy bands, and a real shite host) in order to watch Beck perform. I've counted three people only today. Beck performed wonderfully if you were interested]