50 years on, and after all of the technological advances since, the moon landing still seems like cutting edge stuff. With all of the scifi films where ships are like large motor homes with all of the comforts from home, and journeys across the galaxy seem to take a few hours it’s easy to forget that it wouldn’t be a far cry to describe this adventure as three guys stuffed in a cupboard, strapped to a controlled bomb, before being thrown at another planet and hoping to hit it. Here’s to the geniuses that made it happen, in space and on the ground.

I love the Eno album, it’s quite zen, and really gives you an impression of how quiet/lonely I imagine it must have felt like. But then… what do I know.

The Public Service Broadcasting album is a 10/10 album. From the opener, which uses Kennedy’s speech, it’s totally engaging. ‘The Other Side’ is fabulous and the section in the middle when Apollo 8 has gone behind the moon, and is out of touch with Mission Control, is done so well you have to remind yourself to breathe. I’m sure most people will know the album. Give it another listen today. If you haven’t heard it, get a copy… NOW!… there is no more auspicious day to give it a first listen than today.

TO INFINITY AND BEYOND! What do you mean that wasn’t Neil Armstrong…

This is a summary of what has recently come to light regarding a Universal Music Group fire in 2008 when a LOT of music master tapes were lost. This is the music equivalent of the fire at the library at Alexandria.

A longer discussion about this was was posted by Rick Beato (about a week later) talking about what this might mean for music fans, foe Universal, and also for artists. A fair point made is that Universal seem to be more active ‘protecting’ their music by issuing ‘take downs’ against people on YouTube than in actually protecting the original music tapes.

If you’ve ever watched Rick Beato’s ‘What Makes This Song Great’ videos you’ll see the advantage in being able to access original tapes where you can isolate particular instruments or vocal performances. Consequently, I think there is going to be a big impact on scholarly activity, particularly in relation to 20th century black music in America as well as the golden age of rock and pop.

You can watch the longer discussion here…

Bands from my younger days that you typically don’t hear a lot about these days 
 and then suddenly 
.

Nektar

Reformed Nektar launch Kickstarter for new studio album. – without Roy? It won’t be a ‘Tab In The Ocean’ 😊

Mark-Almond

Remember that UMG fire in 2008 – turn out MarkAlmond’s back catalogue was destroyed in it. – I know – so did a lot of other artists (including another favorite Colosseum), but Mark-Almond were special to me, so I’m taking it personally.

The Enid

A new album – with Robert John Godfrey at the helm 
 surprising – given that he was diagnosed with Alzheimers three years ago and handed over the control of the band to others 
 still – need to visit this when available and give it a listen.

This is exactly what it looks like
 weird. A one man production, literally recorded in his garden shed in Hull over a 6 year period (’79-’85) and released as a cassette advertised in the back of computer magazines. Those were the days, eh?

It’s a home written and recorded War of the Worlds type affair where all of the characters, including the aliens, have various Hull-type accents. What starts off being quite twee actually grabs your attention and becomes really enjoyable and all the more amazing for the fact that there was clearly no big budget or production team, and this is waaaaay before Garageband. It was all done on a Tascam 8-track,

It ultimately came to the attention of Trunk Records years later
 indeed, in the next century!, and it was given a remaster and a limited release on vinyl (500 copies). I managed to snag one and it has pride of place in my record collection. Although sold out, you can download an mp3 version from Trunk Records website for ÂŁ4.99. It runs to nearly 90 minutes in total so that’s not a bad deal.

If you want some more info I’d suggested checking out Trunk Records at https://trunkrecords.greedbag.com/buy/galactic-nightmare-0/ and there’s some additional information at http://trunkrecords.com/turntable/galactic_nightmare.shtml

If you search on Galactic Nightmare on YouTube, it’s actually been uploaded in 4 parts if you want to check it out.

No idea what happened to the author though.

Was never really in to the band, but remember the song from my time at Uni. Great version.

Only found out a few years ago that they were a Scottish band, from Bellshill. Bellshil is not a glamorous location and yet has produced The Soup Dragons, Teenage Fanclub, some of the members of Mogwai and, sadly, Sheena Easton. To be fair, Sheena was the first from this list to come out of Bellshill so it’s been improvement ever since. I’ll spare Sheena any more criticism and not talk about The Big Day festival in Glasgow, in 1990, when… oops.

Anyway, congratulations to The Cousins, as our chums across the pond are referred to in Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy, on their big day. Have a groove with the Soup Dragons.

King Creosote, otherwise known as Kenny Anderson or KC, is something of an enigma who built a whole scene, in the 1990s, around his record label (Fence Records) and his home stomping ground of the East Neuk in Fife, Scotland. Most notable to come out of the scene were the Beta Band (yes, THAT Beta Band
 Gordon Anderson is his younger brother), and KT Tunstall.

KC is almost as well known for his reluctance to leave Fife as he is for how prolific he is as a songwriter. I’ve had a quick stock check and I have 4 albums by his first band Skuobhie Dubh Orchestra (yes, it’s cod Gaelic and meant to be pronounced like the Hanna Barbera ghost hunting dog); 2 albums by his next band Khartoum Heroes (first band with name change after threatened legal action
 sounds like Cartoon Heroes!); and 42 albums and 4 EPs under his own KC pseudonym
 and I am still missing at least a dozen albums. Themes and tropes abound in the KC back catalogue but, above all, there is some excellent songwriting.

For me, his finest album is ‘From Scotland With Love’ which was written to accompany a documentary film for the Cultural Festival partnering the Commonwealth Games in 2014. It’s not a jingoistic album, in line with popular sentiments in many countries currently, but rather a look at various historical periods in Scotland through the use of archive film footage
 so, no William Wallace then. It’s also unique because it doesn’t focus on the well off who usually had access to early film and photographic technology but, instead, on the everyday people who worked in the shipyards, down the mines, fishing and farming. It also covers key events such as emigration, and also the Battle of George Square, 1919 – the last time the Riot Act was read in the United Kingdom.

The film was premiered on Glasgow Green during the games with KC and a large band (14 piece?) accompanying the film in best silent movie fashion. It was a tremendous event
 free entry, and was subsequently released on DVD and CD/vinyl.

The track above, Miserable Strangers, deals with emigration. Happening not that long, historically speaking, after the clearances. If the words, music and pictures don’t move you I can’t help you. You’re a rock.

Get the album, you won’t regret it. Even better, get the film. Heck, buy them both. The setting and history is clearly Scotland but the themes are universal.