Coming soon to Jemtunes…

Posted: November 23, 2014 in Eighties
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Eighties Greatest

Ten tracks from ten albums from ten years

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Simply Seventies #10 – 1979

Posted: November 22, 2014 in Rock
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Today marks the end of the Jemtunes ‘Simply Seventies’ series as we’ve reached the end of the decade – 1979. It’s been quite tricky choosing which albums to include for each year so I’m staying with that theme and choosing Cheap Trick‘s “Dream Police” for the Simply Seventies swan song.

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Dream Police was the band’s fourth studio album and was their most successful commercial venture. Recorded at the Record Plant in L.A., the album gave us several singles including ‘Dream Police’ and ‘Way of the world’.

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But my favourite is “Need your Love” featured here. Building to a crescendo, the guitar work from Rick Neilson over the closing two minutes or so is sublime.

 

 

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For the penultimate posting on the Jemtunes ‘Simply Seventies’ series, here’s the self-titled debut from George Thorogood & the Destroyers released in 1978.

Introducing the world to a master of the ‘Delaware slide’, Mr Thorogood was soon to unleash “Bad to the bone”, a modern-day blues classic anthem since used in countless commercials and movie soundtracks the world over.

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Here though is another classic from the debut – a melancholy tale of a man down on his luck, unsuccessful at finding a job and finding brief solace in a bar….

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Jemtunes is currently working its way through the 1970s with a track from an album released in each year of the decade.

Talking Heads 77 introduced the world to ‘Psycho Killer‘, an anthem which was played completely to death in every studio and at every party during my Foundation course at West Sussex College of Art and Design that year.

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So I’m going to leave it there for this instalment. That and another airing of this wonderful track.

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I am amongst the very privileged few to have been party last night to by far the most intimate and smallest gig (both in venue and audience size) I have ever been to; Arc Iris at Bom Banes in Brighton.

Bom Banes is a cafe-restaurant owned by musician proprietor Jane Bon-Bane. During the day and evening it serves a variety of Belgian and other European fayre, but is unique amongst its peers in that it also hosts live music in its intimate basement environs.

Twenty-five of us crammed ourselves in for a truly memorable acoustic set from Jocie Adams and the band (aka Arc Iris). Hailing from Providence, Rhode Island, the band is Jocie’s solo project having previously fronted for The Low Anthem. Joined by Zach Miller on keys, Ray Belli on percussion, Robin Ryczek on cello and Max Johnson on bass, Arc Iris’ genre is hard to define. So I won’t even try.

Suffice to say that the evening’s performance provided us with a wonderful mix of delicate folk, strident jazz and haunting melody selected both from their debut self-titled album released earlier this year and new material performed live for the first time tonight.

Being up close and personal to the band is one thing; this took that to a whole different level. At one point Jocie stood on a bench by my knee as the acoustics closer to the ceiling gave her voice more depth for certain songs. Beer breaks a plenty, the band chatted amiably between songs, bringing all of us easily in to their conversation. The warmth exuded in more ways than one giving rise to perhaps one of the most memorable gigs I have been in to quite a while.

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Find out more about Arc Iris.

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Jemtunes is revisiting the 1970′s over ten days in November by featuring a track from an album released in each year of the decade. Today it’s 1976 and ‘Year of the Cat‘ from Al Stewart.

This was his 7th studio album released in the July of what subsequently became known (by those of us who were there) as ‘the long hot summer’. Released on the RCA Victor label, it featured a Hipgnosis designed gatefold sleeve and gave Mr Stewart two massive hits in the form of its title track and ‘Borderline’.

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Brighton’s ‘The Haunt’ is an upstairs music venue housed in what used to be the ABC cinema for many years. With a capacity of around 300, it provides a superlative setting for gigs from the small and intimate to the large and loud. Mok on 14.11.14 fell soundly into the latter category.

Mok headlined a massively receptive crowd all itching to see what their latest single “Always Island” sounded like live. They were not to be disappointed.

Following a cracking DJ set from Assistants, second support ‘Along came Shifty’ kicked things off, followed by main support “Half Crown”. Frontman Louie did an admirable job of warming everything up, taking the crowd through a selection of numbers including some from their new EP “Everything Goes”. (More about the band at www.halfcrownband.com)

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Mok hit the stage at just after 21.15 together with (as a bit of a surprise to all) a new itinerant brass section. Kicking things off with old favourites like ‘Hey’ and ‘Rufio’, the band quickly progressed to new material proving, without any shadow of doubt, why they had the headline spot tonight.

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The live version of the new single “Always Island” was sublime in every way, Gracey’s dulcet vocals complementing in perfect synchronicity Lee’s powerful and thought-provoking rap. And tonight, in advance of its formal release later in the month, a limited edition exclusive audio version was available to those quick enough to be first at the ‘merc’ store following the tumultuous encore…’We want Mok, we want Mok, we want Mok’….

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Find out more about Mok on the ‘WeareMok‘ website