Friday, 25 December 2009

Happy Christmas!

Want all the Christmas songs collected together in one post? Well ok then, consider this your present. There's even an extra song.

1st - Miss The Occupier - Christmas Wrapping
2nd - Campfires in Winter - Christmas Song
3rd - Arab Strap - Christmas (Baby Please Come Home)
4th - Teenage Fanclub - Christmas Eve
5th - There Will Be Fireworks - In Excelsis Deo
6th - Frightened Rabbit - It's Christmas So We'll Stop (2007)
7th - El Dog - Let It Snow
8th - Mitchell Museum - Stop The Cavalry
9th - Cocteau Twins - Winter Wonderland
10th - Paul Vickers and The Leg - I Want A Hippopotamus For Christmas
11th - Withered Hand - It's A Wonderful Lie
12th - Recording The Impossible - Silent Night
13th - Synonym - Festiv’ Biznis (Santa’s Goin’ Crazy)
14th - Dawn of the Replicants - Simply Having a Wonderful Christmas Time
15th - Camera Obscura - Little Donkey
16th - Belle & Sebastian - Are You Coming Over For Christmas?
17th - Dan Lyth - She Spent Thirty
18th - Idlewild - Mistletoe And Wine
19th - Macabre Scene - Last Christmas
20th - Dogs Die In Hot Cars - Christmas
21st - Cancel the Astronauts - Dead By Christmas
22nd - A Band Called Quinn - Snowbus
23rd - The Morgue Party Candidate - I Seen Mummy Kissing Santa Claus
24th - The Cinematics - Japanese Snow Queen
24h Bonus - De Rosa - Under The Stairs (Christmas Reverie) Demo Version
25th - Camera Obscura - The Blizzard

Happy Christmas (or other holiday of your choice) everyone. Please remember, Aye Tunes isn't just for Christmas, so keep coming back. Unless you dislike me, then you are excused.

Thursday, 24 December 2009

Christmas Songs - Day 24

Phew, it's the last day of this, so I don't have to keep digging for more songs. Got any suggestions for anything else I can do to force me to make a post every day? There probably won't be anything too exciting posted here over the next day or two, so don't feel bad if you don't visit.

Today's Christmas song is a last minute entry from The Cinematics. They had a new album out a couple of months ago. I wasn't in love with it, but it's not bad.

The Cinematics - Japanese Snow Queen
Cinematics website

Ah heck, it's Christmas, so have another song too:
De Rosa: Under The Stairs (Christmas Reverie) Demo Version

If you are after another freebie song, Kid Canaveral are giving away Good Morning, a taster of the album they'll be releasing next year. It isn't Christmassy, but it is fab, so go get it.

I'll be wandering the streets and pubs of Glasgow later today, so if anyone is at a loose end from about 2pm for a while, give me a shout.

Wednesday, 23 December 2009

Second Hand Marching Band release new single

Only available between 23rd of December and 1st of January 2010. We'll make you a CD and you'll get your own numbered hand made copy. There will probably only be a few dozen made so it might be pure special.
It's a quiet time for new releases, obviously, so might as well flag up good ones as they happen.
We here at Aye Tunes (well, me, no one else works here) love The Second Hand Marching Band, so new material from them is smashing.
As stated in their description above, this new CD is only available for about a week, so get your skates on if you want a copy.
See below to have a wee listen and to get your hands on a copy. Your £3 gets you a CD and a download too.

Christmas Songs - Day 23

Nearly finished. I'm quite chuffed and surprised that I've got a post up ever day as planned.

Today's song is a home demo that I pestered Ross from The Morgue Party Candidate into sending over. If you haven't heard of the band before, I'll direct you to a wee bit I wrote about them earlier in the year here.

The Morgue Party Candidate MySpace
You can also grab their Good Morning, Good Night EP for nothing here.

Tuesday, 22 December 2009

Christmas Songs - Day 22

Getting close to the end of the Christmas songs series now, obviously.
I'm going to need something to replace it by next week, any suggestions?

Today's song was was supposed to be It's Christmas Time by A Band Called Quinn, until I found out that after being available free last year it's been reissued as a single this week, which scuppered that plan. Instead you can have another equally festive track from that free EP.

A Band Called Quinn - MySpace

Monday, 21 December 2009

Best of 2009: Glasgow PodcART

Taking a wee break from the albums I've loved this year to talk about something else that's been a massive influence on both me and the blog. This time you can actually accuse me of writing nice stuff about my pals, but they deserve it.

In case you haven't heard of them, Glasgow PodcART are a team of Glasgow based music fanatics, who put together a weekly podcast laying music from both signed and unsigned artists and lots, lots more. So far, so simple. What makes the weekly podcasts must listens for me isn't just the music, but the people involved.

I was a bit of a late comer to the PodcART, only starting to listen at around episode 20 after seeing the name in Hinterland brochures. Within my first few weeks of listening I was introduced to the concept of Pooching the band, had Trapped in Kansas become forever known to me as Pumped in Venice, listened in on a conversation about porno boots for transvestites and heard something which - no matter how hard I try - I'll never be able to forget involving a glass Irn Bru bottle. Oh, and I heard an absolute ton of cracking music.

To say that listening to Glasgow PodcART has introduced me to new bands would be a massive understatement. Not every song or band is a winner with me, I'd be a bit worried if they were - but the good to bad ratio is heavily weighted in favour of the good. Without them I'd probably not have caught on to half the bands that have featured on Aye Tunes over the past six months, at least not nearly as quickly. I treat it as a good sign that I've upped my game when more of the bands featured now are ones I'm familiar with, but pretty much every week there's still something new to me, and for that I can't thank them PodcART team enough.

Aside from the music there's another thing I love about the PodcART, and that's the banter between whatever team members are taking part in any given week. I've had to stop listening when I'm on public transport, as there's almost always at least one moment every week where I'll uncontrollably laugh out loud. Often while thinking "that's just wrong" at the same time.
Listening to the team in conversation their enthusiasm for music and what they are doing is obvious, and infectious.

Since I generally attend gigs on my own, none of my pals are really into the same things as me and I don't want to be responsible for them having a lousy night out seeing bands that only I want to see, the Podcart team have been handy there too, since they often provide someone for me to talk to when I'm out and about on my own. They really are a lovely bunch of people.

More recently they've been responsible for some of my favourite gigs of the year, from the New Artists Showcase gig in November to their monthly live session gigs in The 13th Note. I know I'm not the only one who counts last week's Christmas party as a highlight of my year either.

All in all, if you have ears I highly recommend listening to the PodcART. Thanks Ally, Halina, Louise, Nicola and Sean for excellent entertainment, long may it continue.

Christmas Songs - Day 21

Just a few days to go. I really should have planned something special for Christmas Day, but as yet I haven't.
Or have I, and just want it to be a surprise?

Today's song comes from Cancel The Astronauts, just because I like them and haven't found an excuse to feature them for ages.

Sunday, 20 December 2009

Best of 2009: Beerjacket - Animosity

It seems somewhat fitting to me that the first album I reviewed over here ends up being my favourite album of the year. Even if I did and still do hate the review I wrote.

As I mentioned in the Top 10 post, Animosity took the top spot for more than just musical reasons. The release of Animosity was another thing that coincided with my birthday this year, and was an album that helped me get my act together round here and attempt to do more writing.
The Beerjacket gig I went to back at the start of August is pretty significant too, it was the first of my "at least one gig every week" quest, which I've kept up until now. I'm having a break this week, incidentally. Basically, if you don't like my writing, blame Beerjacket!

Even without the personal stuff the musical reasons for Animosity topping my list are pretty compelling on their own.
Over the course of the year Animosity is probably the album I've come back and listened to in it's entirety the most. It's hard just pick one song from it that stands out - Drum maybe peeks it's head above the others as a favourite - as the entire album is consistently solid.

Deceptively simple, with for the most part just one man and his guitar, Beerjacket songs are beautifully crafted and performed, with lyrics that are never trite or forced. From that point of view it's a little disappointing that a lot of the exposure Peter got this year came from his Dancing in the Dark cover. On the other hand, here's hoping that hearing that will have sent people to check out original Beerjacket songs.

Now to address the elephant in the room from that old review of mine: Elliott Smith. I got a bit stuck on that last time round, so this time I'll just say that Beerjacket songs remind me quite a lot of sitting and listening to my old Elliott Smith albums. To me that's great, Smith is one of my favourite songwriters. Beerjacket does have a stronger voice though.

Now, why not head on over to Peenko's Blog where you'll find a Beerjacket interview and as a Christmas bonus, all the demos for Animosity available for download?

Beerjacket - Animosity

Christmas Songs - Day 20

Did you know that the number of posts this month is higher than the number of posts I made here in the whole first year Aye Tunes was around? Now you do.
Did you care? Probably not.

We're in to the home stretch with the Christmas songs, so if there's anything you desperatly want to hear, or if there's a song you want to contribute, get it in quickly.
Today's song comes from the still much missed Dogs Die in Hot Cars.

Dogs Die In Hot Cars - Christmas