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Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Playlist 330 - Oct 28 2014

More new material from Wildbirds & Peacedrums this week - their wonderful new album is available to stream on Spotify and bandcamp now. And a new band (on me) with a Halloween reference from San Francisco, Cool Ghouls, playing sprightly psych rock which I like very much.

Also a new album from Elisa Luu, great to hear from her again, and sounding just as beautiful and strange as ever. Silver Servants with Anna Bronsted on vocals, and that gauzy dream pop that I hear as a kind of companion sound.

Benjamin Schoos is back too, new album soon but here's the single feat. April March on duetting vocals - swoonsome is the word. Grasscut covering Robert Wyatt gorgeously.

And East River Pipe being many shades of wonderful.

More on these pages as always.

Oct 28 2014 w/ Cool Ghouls,W&P,Little Tornados,Benjamin Schoos,East RIver Pipe,Elisa Luu++ by The Underground Of Happiness on Mixcloud



The Underground of Happiness
uplifting pop music of every creed


www.theundergroundofhappiness.blogspot.com
www.facebook.com/theundergroundofhappiness

Playlist 330
Tues Oct 28 2014
11.00am-12.00pm
(repeated on Tuesdays 8.30pm)
UCC 98.3FM
listen live on the web at www.ucc.ie/983fm
*listen back to this show here
http://goo.gl/sr0rFA


Playlist
Wildbirds & Peacedrums – Mind blues (playing Village Underground, London, Nov 14)
Cool Ghouls – And it grows
Ultimate Painting – Winter in your heart
Micah P Hinson – The one to save you now
Little Tornados – Space liner
Benjamin Schoos feat. April March – J’ai essayé de t’aimer (playing Surya, London, Dec 1)
Theatr Royal – Doubt
Arms – Are we all in this together
Cormac O Caoimh – Yellow crumbs (playing The Beggarman, Cork, Nov 30)
SIlver Servants – Jerusalem
Elisa Luu – Shebeen
Martin Carr – The Santa Fé Skyway (playing Pepper Canister Church, Dublin, Dec 16+17, w/ Gruff Rhys)
Tarwater – Adrift
East River Pipe – All you little suckers
Haley Bonar – Last war (playing Liverpool Music Week, Nov 1)

*next week’s show features music from The Go Betweens, Chloe March & Merchandise, among others

e-mail the show on radio@ucc.ie
or text +353 (0)86-7839800
please mark messages “uoh”

Conor O'Toole,
c/o UCC 98.3FM,
Áras na Mac Léinn,
Student Centre,
University College Cork,
Cork,
Ireland.




Monday, October 27, 2014

Ariel Pink – Put your number in my phone (4AD)

More gloriously poignant/vaguely unsettling jangle pop from the pink-haired one. He may have dropped the Haunted Graffiti but the killer 80s-inflected tunes keep coming.

In among the irresistible chiming guitars, the massed banks of synths over a heartfelt “baby” and the superb touch of a girl’s gently pleading message on his voicemail, I find myself returning again and again to the genius staccato of the chorus bassline. It seems to tap out a morse code of hope and love from Ariel to the world.

And apart from that being exactly what the world needs now, it is such a beautiful thing.

*As is his wont, the video is likely to take the poignant edge off the tune for you, opting instead to creep you the fuck out.

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Playlist 329 - Oct 21 2014

Having just read the fascinating 4AD biography, I'd been biding my time to play something from the staggering Le Mystere des Voix Bulgares, a Bulgarian female choir given an "indie" UK release first in 1986. It was an album that had quite an impact on many other 4AD artists, including Liz Fraser of Cocteau Twins, who was already ploughing a most individual vocal furrow, in fairness.

Two from the Hidden Shoal label this week, the sumptuous dream pop of Chloe March, the feverish psych strummings of Brother Earth.

Also Caribou, it's sounding like an instant classic that new album; a re-release for Gravenhurst, lovely psych folk with an electronic undertone; Ty Segall channelling Brett Anderson of Suede but pulling it off; East River Pipe , haunting and poignant wrapped in glorious guitar pop.

And Kemper Norton, as intriguing and spooked out as ever.

More on these pages as always.

Oct 21 2014 w/ East River Pipe,Caribou,Bell Gardens,SPLH,Voix Bulgares,Cocteau Twins++ by The Underground Of Happiness on Mixcloud



The Underground of Happiness
uplifting pop music of every creed


www.theundergroundofhappiness.blogspot.com
www.facebook.com/theundergroundofhappiness
Twitter: @Conat1

Playlist 329
Tues Oct 21 2014
11.00am-12.00pm
(repeated on Tuesdays 8.30pm)
UCC 98.3FM
listen live on the web at www.ucc.ie/983fm
*listen back to this show here
http://goo.gl/s2Ffeo


Playlist
Bell Gardens – She’s stuck in the endless loop of her decline
SlowPlaceLikeHome – Dear Diary
Paul Smith & Peter Brewis – Exiting Hyde Park Towers (playing St Giles in the Fields, London, Dec 19)
Chloe March – Eucalyptus night
Brother Earth – Out like a lion
Kemper Norton – Requited
East River Pipe – King of nothing never
The Drink – At the weekend (playing The End Festival, London, Nov 20)
Le Mystere des Voix Bulgares – Kalimankou denkou
Cocteau Twins – Iceblink luck
Caribou – Our love (playing Liverpool Music Week, Oct 23)
Gravenhurst – Black holes in the sand
Ty Segall – The singer (playing Electric Ballroom, London, Nov 12)
Women’s Christmas – Thumbs up to the world (playing The Pop Inn, Dublin, Nov 1)

*next week’s show features music from Wildbirds & Peacedrums, Benjamin Schoos feat. April March & Micah P Hinson, among others

e-mail the show on radio@ucc.ie
or text +353 (0)86-7839800
please mark messages “uoh”

Conor O'Toole,
c/o UCC 98.3FM,
Áras na Mac Léinn,
Student Centre,
University College Cork,
Cork,
Ireland.




Thursday, October 16, 2014

Rachael Dadd – Strike our scythes / Rozi Plain – Jogalong (Split Single, Lost Map Records)



A brilliant declaration of progressive folk values from two of Britain’s most distinctive contemporary voices, and regulars on the show's playlists over the last few years.

Rachael Dadd brings ukulele strums, shakers (in fact a box of matches apparently) and a loping drumbeat with a charm-the-pants-off-you chorus vocal line from the Kate Bush school (“ca-ca-co-co-yup”) to an uplifting worksong.

In Rozi Plain’s case, her signature syncopated guitar, softly insistent backbeat, a glorious kosmische synth line and a bank of celestial harmonies develop an eminently danceable groove, perfect for the stoic nostalgia of the lyric.

One sprightly and bouncy, the other a sort of motorik murmuring. Put together, they make an intriguing yin and yang.

It’s all most beguiling and joyous and, in short, very classy pop music.



Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Playlist 328 - Oct 14 2014

Been enjoying the new Mark Fry album very much lately, reminding me of Bert Jansch a bit with its low acoustic drone and keening string parts. So, good to hear those two together at the start of this week's show.

Also, Laetitia Sadier doing lush Philly soul; Ariel Pink doing swoonsome jangle pop; Tennis doing sweet blue-eyed soul.

Mid-show, another mini-folk run with the bounce of Rachael Dadd, plaintive tones of Olof Arnalds and spare instrumental piano of Soley.

And two FM Cornog songs, one covered by Lambchop from 1998, the other from Cornog's own East River Pipe, from the reissued 1999 album The gasoline age. Songs as good as those are a treasure for humanity.

More on these pages.

Oct 14 2014 w/ Ariel Pink,Laetitia Sadier,Olof Arnalds,Polar Bear,Lambchop,East River Pipe++ by The Underground Of Happiness on Mixcloud



The Underground of Happiness
uplifting pop music of every creed


www.theundergroundofhappiness.blogspot.com
www.facebook.com/theundergroundofhappiness
Twitter: @Conat1

Playlist 328
Tues Oct 14 2014
11.00am-12.00pm
(repeated on Tuesdays 8.30pm)
UCC 98.3FM
listen live on the web at www.ucc.ie/983fm
*listen back to this show here
http://goo.gl/TYKCrJ


Playlist
Mark Fry – Aeroplanes
Bert Jansch – The black swan
Laetitia Sadier – Release from the centre of your heart (playing Café Oto, London, Dec 5)
Tune-Yards – Real thing (playing Pitchfork Festival, Paris, Nov 1)
Tennis – Never work for free
Ariel Pink – Put your number in my phone (playing Scala, London, Nov 17)
Olof Arnalds - Patience (playing Point Ephemere, Paris, Oct 21)
Rachael Dadd – Bounce the ball (playing Daylight Music, Union Chapel, London, Nov 1)
Soley – Kromantik
Polar Bear w/ Jin Jin – Cuckoo
Markus Mehr – Blackbox
Lambchop – Life #2
East River Pipe – Wholesale lies
Kryshe - Lullaby
Rozi Plain - Jogalong (playing Colston Hall, Bristol, Oct 23 w/ Rachael Dadd & Emma Gatrill)

*next week’s show features music from Kemper Norton, Chloe March & East River Pipe, among others

e-mail the show on radio@ucc.ie
or text +353 (0)86-7839800
please mark messages “uoh”

Conor O'Toole,
c/o UCC 98.3FM,
Áras na Mac Léinn,
Student Centre,
University College Cork,
Cork,
Ireland.




Monday, October 13, 2014

East River Pipe – The Gasoline Age (reissued, Merge Records)



Another in the most welcome series of reissues from Merge Records to celebrate its 25th birthday.

East River Pipe is the recording moniker of FM Cornog of New York and he would be the definition of cult – highly regarded by other musicians, critically acclaimed over but unknown to the majority of the population.

I came across the name first, I think, through Stewart Lee’s album reviews sometime in the 1990s, and through the advocacy and cover versions of labelmate Kurt Wagner of Lambchop (Cornog’s songs have also been covered by David Byrne, The Mountain Goats, Okkervil River and The Pains of Being Pure at Heart, among many others).

This album was originally released in 1999 and features a host of unbeatable pop songs, unforgettable melodies and vignettes at every turn. It is also a concept album of sorts, about the automobile and its iconic place in the hearts of Americans, offering a chance of love, prestige, freedom, redemption and all sorts.

These are home recordings dressed in simple 3-chord guitar patterns for the most part, with rudimentary (although often cavernous and sinister) drum machines and some choice synth support. If anything, the plain and unfussy arrangements add an extra layer of emotion to the songs about strivers, drifters and losers. There are so many great moments, there’s no way around making a list.

The deadpan brilliance of opener ‘Shiny shiny pimpmobile’ shows genius immediately, an airy, high tone synth carrying the sense of delusions of grandeur.

The haunting ballad ‘Cybercar’, with a terrific 2-note guitar part and Philip K Dick-esque storyline.

‘Wholesale lies’ is like some fabulous Big Star outtake, all thrilling trebly acoustics and strident vocals.

There’s the gorgeous ‘My little rainbow’, a lovely, loose country lead at the centre.

And the wonderfully evocative ‘Party drive’ with these lines, the epitome of street poetry -

“a joint for me, pills for you
summer nights, no cops in sight
it’s a party drive”

‘King of nothing never’ (covered by Lambchop on the album What another man spills) is another gorgeous fuzzy guitar jangle serenading loss and over too soon.

The glorious ‘All you little suckers’ even has a touch of AM radio to it, harmonies from The Beach Boys and a chord sequence from Bread.

The sublime guitar uplift on ‘Astrofarm’.

The heartbreak of ‘Atlantic City (Gonna make a million tonight)’, it’ll get you right in the ribs.

That’s not the half of it. The songs are special, from start to finish. Throughout, Cornog’s voice has more than a shade of the wry world weariness of Dean Wareham about it, such a poignant instrument. And the songs have a distinct and enduring literary quality, conjuring vivid imagery in every line.

It’s a tremendous album, for filing between Lambchop and Silver Jews, and deserving of a place in every record collection.







Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Playlist 327 - Oct 7 2014

The great new Caribou album loomed large over this week's show - from it we played the gorgeous 'All I ever need'. I find I'm pairing it with the new Wildbirds & Peacedrums material, they have a second thrilling single of drumbeat soul (let's call it) from their upcoming new album.

I've been reading the 4AD biography of late so I thought it'd be nice to pull out some Tarnation from 1997, an old No Disco staple in the Donal Dineen days. You could file that sound next to Calexico, so as luck would have it we also had the writer Sylvie Simmons with her debut album produced by that other Tucson legend Howe Gelb.

Sean Nicholas Savage plays in Ireland this week, Paul Smith & Peter Brewis with beautiful, lyrical chamber pop.

A Lazarus Soul and Women's Christmas, two fine Irish bands with new albums out around now.

Jennifer Castle and A Winged Victory For The Sullen, you'll find more on the blog on those; Circus Devils and GBV, connected by Robert Pollard.

And the brilliantly lugubrious voice of Dan Michaelson, like Lambchop in a lower register. Enjoy.

Oct 7 2014 w/ Caribou,Wildbirds & Peacedrums,Jennifer Castle,AWVFTS,GBV, Circus Devils++ by The Underground Of Happiness on Mixcloud



The Underground of Happiness
uplifting pop music of every creed


www.theundergroundofhappiness.blogspot.com
www.facebook.com/theundergroundofhappiness
Twitter - @Conat1

Playlist 327
Tues Oct 7 2014
11.00am-12.00pm
(repeated on Tuesdays 8.30pm)
UCC 98.3FM
listen live on the web at www.ucc.ie/983fm
*listen back to this show here
http://goo.gl/uZFq6d


Playlist
Tarnation – Your thoughts and mine
Sylvie Simmons – You are in my arms
Caribou – All I ever need (playing Vicar Street, Dublin, Nov 5)
Wildbirds & Peacedrums – Keep some hope (playing Village Underground, London, Nov 14)
Sean Nicholas Savage - Heartless (playing Triskel Arts Centre, Cork, Oct 11, w/ Myles Manley & Cal Folger Day)
Paul Smith & Peter Brewis – Mount Wellington rises (playing St Giles in the Fields, London, Dec 19)
A Lazarus Soul – We know where you live (playing The Grand Social, Dublin, Nov 9)
Women’s Christmas – Chalklines (playing Crane Lane Theatre, Cork, Oct 18 w/ Laurie Shaw)
Suzi Jane Hokom – Need all the help I can get
Dan Michaelson & The Coastguards – Bones
Jonny Greenwood – Open spaces (from the soundtrack of the film There will be blood – Jonny Greenwood playing Albert Hall, Manchester, Oct 10 w/ London Symphony Orchestra)
A Winged Victory For The Sullen – Atomos II
Circus Devils – Eye mask of leaves
Guided By Voices – The Official Ironmen Rally Song
Jennifer Castle – Working for the man

*next week’s show features music from Ariel Pink, Polar Bear & East River Pipe, among others

e-mail the show on radio@ucc.ie
or text +353 (0)86-7839800
please mark messages “uoh”

Conor O'Toole,
c/o UCC 98.3FM,
Áras na Mac Léinn,
Student Centre,
University College Cork,
Cork,
Ireland.