Saturday, September 5, 2015

The Wooden Finger Five – September 2015

5.The Knock – Hop Along

Hop Along are fairly anonymous, to the point that I keep thinking of their name as being Painted Shut which is actually the name of their new album. They sound like the quintessential early-‘90s alternative rock band fronted by a roughish woman, which makes them like, I don’t know … either Garbage or Belly I guess. Their latest album – which indeed is called ‘Painted Shut’ – is worth digging out of the bowels of Spotify or racks of Amoeba and giving a spin.

4.Harpooned – Wire

I only recently found out that Wire had released a new album this year. A new album from Wire is never going to sound as fresh as their first three LPs – not that I was around to hear them when they were originally released – and it does feel a bit strange to hear men of their vintage sing about ‘Blogging’, but it’s a good, solid album nonetheless. Final track ‘Harpooned’ is the one that stands out for me; an eight-minute slog that suggests to me Wire were also listening when the ‘90s came around.

3.Terrence Loves You – Lana Del Rey

I don’t think I’m alone in going ga-ga over Lana Del Rey’s first big hit ‘Video Games’ when it appeared on Youtube, and then being disappointed by pretty much everything she has done since. ‘Terrence Loves You’ still has many of the things that have annoyed me about her other songs; again seemingly trying to evoke some lost, ‘great’ 1950s Hollywood movie star romance that ended in a tragic car crash on the boulevard. But this is about as well as she’s ever pulled that shtick off, and as awkward as the line ‘But I still got jazz’ looks when written it sounds somewhat beautiful in this context.

2.Dream Lover – Destroyer

Destroyer’s ‘Dream Lover’ is possibly not even the best song of that name for 2015; the Vaccines’ own ‘Dream Lover’ was a stand-out track on their new album as well. The saxophone may just win it for Destroyer’s version though. The line ‘here comes the sun’ can’t help but feel to me like a Beatles allusion, even If it’s not really meant to be, and it brings to mind George Harrison’s porch-front guitar pickings layered over this cheerful track.

1.Anthem For Doomed Youth – The Libertines

Last month I implied that the Libertines’ comeback single, ‘Gunga Din’, was basically the type of track you would expect from them based on the stereotypes about them. Calling a track ‘Anthem For Doomed Youth’ probably tops that though – the title seems as close as anything to the band’s unofficial mission statement. (The title is actually taken from an English poem about the first World War.) So does the chorus: ‘We’re going nowhere/But nowhere’s on our way’. It’s also the line that has stuck in my head the most over the past month, and I put this track in the number one spot for this month purely for that.

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