Saturday, 21 January 2017

Browsing





 It's been about 30 years since I've been in a shop browsing for LPs. Usually in those days I knew what I was going into the shop to buy, having saved up my pocket money for a number of weeks! I'd always have a good browse, but it would drive me mad because I'd have to wait a number of weeks before I'd have enough money to buy another. I'd build up a 'want list' in my head of my future purchases. I'd agonize for weeks about which LP would make it to the top of that list. It was a vicious circle that went on for years!




I forgot how cool it is to go into a record shop and browse away for an hour and see what gems I could find. More often than not, I'd find about 10 Lps I wanted. I'd pick about 3 or 4 of those and hide the rest in the hope they will be there the next time I pay a visit!! Well, that's the romantic way of doing it! Soultrader (the shop below) was the first 2nd hand record shop I found with my new found love for all things round and plastic! I happened upon it when I was visiting the in-laws in Co. Carlow. Unfortunately it has since closed it's doors, but while it was there, it was a joy to visit. The people running it were great too. I'd always spend ages talking to them about what I'd be looking for or get recommendations from them.

You could tell I was a little ring rusty with browsing through records. The people beside me could flick through a stack in seconds.

 I suppose with Ireland being so small, the turnover of records in 2nd hand shops is small, hence, every time you go into the 2nd hand shops the records are the same and not much new stock would have arrived. There are not many to choose from so you could leave for a couple of months before going back.





The first 3 records I bought in this shop were:
1) Slowdive - Holding Our Breath
2) Pale Saints - The Comforts Of Madness
3) Into Paradise - Churchtown.




I'll be honest and say, I knew of all 3 of these bands from back in the day, knew a song or two by them, but that was it, I guess I never got round to them. Slowdive, I'd been listening a lot before getting my hands on the EP. Since that purchase I've become a big fan and bought the other albums and EPs. Was delighted to hear that they'd reformed. It seems my timing was great. They released a new song last week which I highly recommend.


Slowdive - Shine


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As I mentioned, I'd heard of The Pale Saints mainly from their song 'Sight Of You'. I even recognized the sleeve of this brilliant album 'The Comforts Of Madness'. When I bought this album, I took a slight risk, but it was recommended to me by the guy in the shop. I'm glad I did! Remember folks, always listen to the guy in the record shop! They know their shit!


The Pale Saints - Sight Of You

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This is an album I was always curious about. Back in the early 90's, record labels were snapping up Irish bands on the back of the global success of U2. I remember distinctly advertisements of this album on the back of Irish music magazine Hot Press. I'm a sucker for good cover art and I always loved this one. Strangely, like the other albums, I never got to own them. When listening to this, it brings me right back to the early 90's with that distinctive guitar sound. It so happens I grew up about 2 miles away from where the band were from and the title of this album 'Churchtown'. 





Into Paradise - Burns My Skin






Friday, 20 January 2017

The Brian Jonestown Massacre

As I sit here writing this post to you I'm listening to The Brian Jonestown Massacre's brilliant album Spacegirl & Other Favourites so I thought I'd write a post while I'm at it!




Since I started buying vinyl again, there is one band that I can't get enough of. I had heard of the name before but always left them on the back burner in the hope that one day I might give them a go. Somebody must have been listening to me because they came to me in the form of a theme tune to Boardwalk Empire. I'm not one to sit down to a box set like a lot of people do these days but I gave this series a go and quite enjoyed it. What did stand out for me though was the theme tune. I instantly liked it and googled to see who it was. Low and behold, it was said band, "The Brian Jonestown Massacre". I went onto Youtube to locate the song 'Straight Up And Down' taken from their 1996 album Take it From The Man! I gave the whole album a listen and instantly fell in love with them.



Not long after I bought 3 albums from A Records. I was in look, as most of their back catalog had been reissued. Having said that, their back catalog  is ginormous! Where does one start with a band who releases nearly 2 albums every year for 20 years! I had to have Take it from the Man! I also bought 'Their Satanic Majesties Second Request'. I loved the take on the title of The Rolling Stones album, 'Their Santanic Majesties Request'. The third album I bought was 'Methodrone'. In the reviews it described the album as a Shoegaze classic! I thought to myself, yep that's for me!


Another stroke of luck around that time was they were on tour and they were heading to Dublin. Needless to say I purchased 2 tickets to see them straight way. I was blown away by them. Yeah, Anton Newcome throws the odd mickey fit. For me, it just added to the charm. I remember he started a song 3 times and had a strop with the rest of the band for not playing a particular song correctly!

I saw them for the second time last summer. They done an incredible 2-3 hour set. Not many bands doing that these days. They have a new album up for preorder at the moment. Best search behind the seats of the couch for a few quid for pay for that one!


Tuesday, 17 January 2017

A musical journey



Apparently I've been away from you for almost 2 years! Can't believe it's been that long! Family life changed with the arrival of my second daughter. This left me with not a lot of extra time to have fun with this blog! A lot of blogs around seemed to be doing more than enough to keep everybody happy with musical nuggets past and present. My musical hat goes off to you all!

A lot has changed in those 2 years I've been away, including my musical tastes. Things started changing when I got a present of a turntable at Christmas 2 years ago . I never had a huge record collection to start with but enough for me to make the trip up into the attic to see what was salvageable. Turns out everything seemed to be in working order. It was then I got the love for playing vinyl again! You can't beat the ritual of  taking the record out of it's sleeve and again out of the inner, minding not to touch my grubby, sweaty fingers off the grooves. Spinning it around to see which side is Side A and then placing it carefully on the platter! Turning on to either 33 or 45 rpm depending whether you are playing an album, single or indeed an EP! Then gently lifting the the arm and moving it across to the edge of the record. The best bit comes next! Move the arm lever down so the stylus gently caresses the record. If it's an old record you might hear a little crackling to start with and then BOOM!

One day it came to me. It was staring me in the face. My blogs name is 'Turn On Your Record Player'! Why don't I take you with me on my musical journey and lets see where it takes us. I have bought over 200 albums in the past two years so I've a lot to stories to share. Most of these albums you may never of heard before (more in posts to come), so my hope is that you will find something you like. Either that or I have a shit taste in music!