Sunday, November 18, 2007

Woah, Roy's back with a solid smoker that could well be his most consistent album since "Out After Dark". "Shake It" runs a little over 36 minutes in total and leaves most collections I've heard recently in the dust. By the time we get to "The Great Divide", the patented jangle is hitting all the right spots. What an amazing sound, taking a Dylanesque backdrop and turning it into a heartstring tugging tour de force. Roy Loney is one of the great rock'n'roll singers. Period. This latest Career Records release is a complete testament to that. Utterly timeless, there's quite a team on this 12 song belter. The cast includes one Deniz Tek, Jim Sangster and Scott McCaughey all weighing in to provide the perfect bolster. Be it psychedelically psonic on "Subterranean Waterfalls" or psychotic reactionary ala "Don't Like Nothin'" (not the Amy Rigby song) there are many cool subtleties on display. Great songs played damn well with no hint of mollycoddling. You almost never hear that anymore so that makes this all the more disarming. That oboe on "Hamlet's Brother, Happy" is bloomin' exquisite.

I can think of no higher compliment than the fact that it sounds like he's being backed by The Skeletons except that he's not. That's how complete that these guys have nailed it. "Looking For The Body" is top notch pub rock, or I think they'd call it tavern in the climes that this was made. Anyway you call it, this'll put a big fat smirk on your chops.

Brother Patrick tells me there's a Spanish Ep doing the rounds too. I'll have to get back to you on that score. Meanwhile, I hope he can bring some of these vibrations in the direction of Europe sometime soon. One of the nicest guys in the business has made one of the best albums you could hope to hear in these times of relatively slim pickings. "Shake it or Leave It" swings. Cop an earful and you will too.
No, I won't be going to see the Sex Pistols tonight in a huge barn in Glasgow. I've moved on... or have I. Anyway, spurred on by these annoying gift ideas in all manner of media, here's something that you, or your significant other/friend might actually get a kick out of.

Bearing more than a similarity to a half brick, this book of photos will keep you occupied for days. What's more it's cheap enough to buy two copies and you could actually frame your favourites. Assembled by Holly George-Warren, with a foreword by Richard Hell, it has images from the punk rock wars by people who were in the trenches. That's what they were called before they were christened moshpits. These individuals include David Arnoff, Roberta Bayley, Nancy Breslow, Stephanie Chernikowski, Theresa Kereakes and Danny Fields.

Anyway everybody you'd expect to be featured is pretty much here and there are a few surprises too. It's a total blast. So check out Amazon UK and US and splash out. This isn't something you want to be carrying back from a bookshop, unless you're up for a spot of weight training.