Lykke Li - Hammersmith Apollo, London, 13 Nov 2014

I saw Lykke Li's show at the Hammersmith Odeon, sorry Eventim Apollo last week.

There's a bunch of photos at The LIne Of Best Fit.

As the Independent review put it:

The audience was often left with just her silhouette dancing wildly amid the smoke-filled stage, like a gothic leather-wearing pixie. There was a dark intensity to her performance that was both disquieting and impressive.

Thomas Hannan, writing for The Line of Best Fit :

The Swede seems so consumed by the sound she concocted on her latest album I Never Learn that its bleakness infects all songs in the set, no matter what record from which they originate. And, credit to her artistic bravery, it works – even when hearing a tune as playful as early wonder “Little Bit” dressed up as the brooding beast that stands before tonight, you suspect that you could love this much bolder, scolded version just as much as the original given time.

It's an odd experience, which I first witnessed at Latitude in July and again last Thursday. Lykke is detached from the crowd, often in her own bubble, yet somehow remains engaged with us.

It's quite a thing.



Ride Reform

This website was originally intended for my #corporate #portfolio, but for the last few years has been a place where I post Taylor Swift videos. Amongst these though, I've routinely mentioned a desire for Ride, the band responsible for my favourite song, to reunite. 

Today, they did



Top 50 Debut Albums (10-1)

10) dEUS - Worst Case Scenario (1994)

I clearly remember the first time I heard this band, watching the video for Hotellounge on MTV's 120 minutes. I've been hooked ever since. 

9) De La Soul - 3 Feet High And Rising (1989)

Where Public Enemy had their magnificent powerful sound, De La Soul excelled at creating their own little sub-genre. The 'Daisy Age' was as much fun as it was experimental. The indie guitar band press loved this record. So did I.

8) Dexys Midnight Runners - Searching For The Young Soul Rebels (1980)

The first in a run of nigh-on flawless, unique albums. Proper genius that Rowland chap.

7) Guns N' Roses - Appetite For Destruction (1987)

If it only had one from 'Welcome To The Jungle', 'Paradise City' and 'Sweet Child O'Mine' it would still make this list. That it has all three guarantees a top 10 place. 

Much of what would follow was abysmal, making this debut even more remarkable.

6) The Stone Roses - The Stone Roses (1989)

It's become the law to include this in every music list that's ever made, so here it is. 

Heaton Park, Manchester in 2012 was very special. 

5) Ride - Nowhere (1990)

Massive cavernous reverb. Big old floppy haircuts. What a record. Five years ago I said it was my favourite debut. This top 10 is pretty interchangeable then.

4) Cyndi Lauper - She’s So Unusual (1983)

Seriously, just listen to Time After Time. 

3) Juliana Hatfield - Hey Babe (1992)

My favourite songwriter, bar none. This, her debut after the break-up of Blake Babies was something that until recently, she didn't seem to care much for, yet it's one of her finest. This exceptional essay by Laura Fisher says more than I could ever manage.
Many albums in this list have changed my life and how I relate to music, but none more than this.

I wanted to use the video for 'Everybody Loves Me But You' here because it's fab, but it's not embeddable. Watch it on YouTube.

2) Sugar - Copper Blue (1992)

As demonstrated by 2012's Silver Age, Bob Mould is still making astonishing music. Four decades ago Hüsker Dü were remarkable too, but it is the work he recorded as Sugar I find his best. Over 20 years on, Copper Blue still excites.

1) Poliça - Give You The Ghost (2012)

This will come as no surprise to anyone who's had to put with me banging on about this band.

An album which, 2 and a half years on is still growing on me, and I continue to play it (together with their magnificent 2nd LP) an inordinate amount.  

I connect with Channy's vocals, lyrics and emotion, Ryan's music, Chris's bass and the two drummers (Drew and Ben) in ways that continue to surprise me. 

The best music I've ever heard.