The Records That Sent Me Mad

Friday, July 27, 2007

1. My CD player (well, one of them) is a temperamental sort; if it’s been turned off, as opposed to left on standby, it’ll only scan discs properly if it’s first fed the Fireworks EP by Embrace (or something of comparable or shorter length). Why this is, I’m not sure. After it’s scanned that, you can remove that disc and feed it anything else with no problem whatsoever, but from cold turn-on, nothing with anything else. It just scans and scans and scans, missing the disc and eventually claiming there’s no disc there.
2. That’s a lie about the Fireworks EP, btw, although only just; it’ll scan anything under about 17 minutes in length first time out.
3. Hearing something different every time.
4. My iPod, after a battery transplant, has died. It lasted 3 ½ years; not a bad lifespan given the warnings people doled out about it dying after 18 months.
5. Having a drum roll actually roll, as in move, as in from one place to another.
6. Paul compared Oasis to Spacemen 3 but was a little trepidatious; understandable, given the likely ‘wtf’ reaction to such a statement.
7. He’s not quite right, but he’s not far off.
8. I’d put a waveform here, but there’s no point.
9. Obv., like typing in Finnish (suomen kieli kuuluu uralilaiseen kielikuntaan, sen suomalais-ugrilaisen haaran itämerensuomalaisiin kieliin), you wont understand what that graphic would have meant if you don’t know the language, but if you do…
10. Contrary to popular belief, I don’t run songs through audio programmes and ‘look at the waveform’ very often to judge whether they’re compressed; I use my ears. As mentioned the other day, I don’t even have Audacity. (Although I’m thinking of looking into it.)
11. But if you know what a normal, uncompressed waveform looks like, then you know that the “Some Might Say” one looks like… noise.
12. Or, rather, looks like something incredibly consistent and repetitive and unchanging.
13. Here’s a waveform from a minute of a track from He Poos Clouds by Owen Pallet.
15. Oasis took shoegaze, trance, and added shoutable melodies over the top; it’s almost unstoppable. Or it was.
16. I doubt they did it deliberately.
17. “Clocks” by Coldplay got a trance remix. Not surprising. Because it’s monotonous, physically.
18. wtf is ‘trance’ anyway?!
19. Saw a guy with some Grado SR60s round his neck at the train station. Decent headphones, but they’re open-backed; surely you can’t hear ANYTHING with them on the train?
20. Perhaps that’s why they were round his neck.
21. I fixed my iPod, btw, seemingly by bleeding inside it.

Enough with the silly list. The selections of records that follow signify three things; the records that unsettled me, the records that reassured me, and the records that followed. Which is to say that those in the red corner are the obnoxiously loud ones that I wanted to like, or did like, but couldn’t bring myself to listen to as often as I thought I should, and didn’t know why. But I do now. And those in the blue corner are the records that I came across at about the same time that I could and did listen to loads, and loved, and that suggested to me that there was something intrinsically and quantifiably different between them and the other batch, something that was wrong with the other batch. And then those that came after are the records that I suspect, one way or another, or, in one case, know for sure, have followed my ‘work’, and got things right.

In the red corner

65daysofstatic – One Time For All Time

Embrace – This New Day

Bloc Party – Silent Alarm

Snow Patrol – Final Straw

Mouse On Mars – Radical Connector

Cocteau Twins – Heaven Or Las Vegas (Remastered)

Coldplay – X&Y

M83 – Before The Dawn Heals Us

The Flaming Lips – At War With The Mystics

Queens Of The Stone Age – Songs For The Deaf
Nathan Fake – Drowning In A Sea Of Love

In the blue corner

Guillemots – I Saw Such Things In My Sleep EP

Patrick Wolf – Wind In The Wires

Wilco – Yankee Hotel Foxtrot

Lambchop – Is A Woman

The Open - Statues

Elbow – Leaders Of The Free World

Kate Bush – Aerial

Morphine – Cure For Pain

And the records that have benefited
65daysofstatic – The Destruction of Small Ideas
LCD Soundsystem – Sound of Silver
Ulrich Schnauss – Goodbye
Ash – Twilight of the Innocents
Caribou - Andorra Seven - If Symptoms Persist Kill Your Doctor

NB. As the author and God of this blog, I shall amend, update, add to and detract from these lists over the future hours, days, weeks, and months, as other records pop into my mind.

The way the patio door creaks and cracks in the morning when the sun hits it and the heat expands its constituent materials, plastic aching against glazing, metal bending into silicone.

Why does one write?

The nature of this blog may change over the next few months; I am not sure. Work, home, passion; all change.

I say "I've only got twelve months left in me" every year, and I'm still here. I don't think I can stop.

Fuck an Objectivity, part 2 is still planned out in my mind, at least. I’m aware that I often write part ones but that part twos either don’t materialise or else don’t do justice, though.

I don’t hate “nu rave”, btw; I just think the records have been shite so far.

I love a good pair of headphones.

Current listening? Wilderness Survival. Basquiat Strings. Caribou. Two Lone Swordsmen.

Songs of the 50s and early 60s. Oh wait a minute Mr Postman. Mr Sandman bring me a dream. Mr Postman bring me a CD.

A profound sentiment or sentence flitted through my head while I was writing that last bit but has gone now. Maybe I’ll remember it later.


Friday, July 27, 2007


Blogger knicksgrl0917 - 12:51 am

hey! i'm going to cali this weekend and won't be back until is the website i was talking about where i made extra summer cash. Later! the website is here

Blogger Ian - 7:02 am

I fucking knew the remaster on Heaven or Las Vegas was shit!

Also, there's not exactly a ton to look into with Audacity, it's free, you download it, bam.

Blogger Nick - 7:08 am

Oh I've downloaded it; I just can't really be arsed to use it! I'd rather listen to records than look at them...

Blogger Jeffro - 6:25 pm

Although a couple of years old, I thought you might enjoy this:


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Nick Southall was born in southwest England at the tail end of the 70s, and is the youngest of three brothers. He has a degree in popular culture and philosophy and has written about music for Stylus Magazine, The Guardian and Drowned In Sound, amongst others. He likes red wine, expensive headphones, spicy food, and the Hungarian national football team of the 1950s. His favourite record is the last one he listened to. You can contact him by email via sickmouthy @ gmail dot com should you so wish.

All material copyright Nick Southall 2006/2007/2008

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