Latitude kicks off on Friday – how exciting! – so here’s a special playlist to tide you over ‘til then.
Thurston Moore – Detonation
MUMMY AND DADDY SUBPOP SPLIT UP! When Sonic Youth’s Kim Gordon and Thurston Moore announced they were ending both the band and their marriage, many of us indie kids weaned on a diet of grunge rusks regressed to being a hurt teenager who slammed bedroom doors and had talk of family therapy thrown at them. But it’s OK. Indie mom and pop are still there for you; you just have TWO homes now.
In fact, Thurston Moore’s next move was to leave the States to come and live in a shared student flat in Stoke Newington. I’d tell people I’d seen Thurston Moore in Fresh & Wild quizzically shaking some organic alfalfa and people were unsure if I’d gone quite mad. Then Thurston helpfully released a song called Detonation, which is all about living in Stoke Newington. He really bloody loves it in Stoke Newington. I mean, it IS quite good. We have an all-night snooker hall and a curry house Orbital recommended in Time Out.
Kim Gordon’s solo ventures (as heard at Dalston’s Café Oto – I’m surrounded by Sonic Youth these days; I needn’t have worried they’d become strangers) have been almost impenetrably white noise, which is obviously GREAT. Her new book Girl in a Band is also an absolute bible to anyone even half-interested in music.
Thurston’s recent solo and joint ventures, conversely, have been unexpectedly jangly, summery pop with, good Lord, regular guitar tunings (WHAT!), as well as new songs with no time signature that last four hours without a break. But he seems incredibly happy just jamming, making it up as he goes along. Playing guitars with his new London friend James who lives in the spare room opposite the kitchen.
Please do go along to see Thurston at Latitude and cheer on Happy Dad.
Liz Buckley (@liz_buckley)
Badly Drawn Boy – Once Around The Block
MANY YEARS AGO I was standing in the queue in Virgin Megastore in Glasgow, waiting to buy some CDs (yes kids, CDs), when a song came on that I knew I would want to hear over and over again.
The queue was long, and by the time I got to the front THE SONG was over, and another had begun. I asked the guy at the till what the amazing song before had been. He told me it was Squarepusher, whose album I immediately also bought, and soon discovered most definitely did not contain THE SONG.
For the next year, I was obsessed. What had it been? How would I find it again? Was that Virgin staff member just a Squarepusher-pusher? WE MAY NEVER KNOW.
Thankfully, about 14 months after the original incident, I heard it again, and nearly jumped across a busy bar in an attempt to solve the mystery of THE SONG! Here it is…
Sun Kil Moon – Carry Me Ohio
Bands come into our lives in so many ways: family, friends, radio, television, films, adverts, shops, people sitting next to you in traffic. Despite all that, I found Sun Kil Moon on Wikipedia.
Discovering someone (in this case Mark Kozelek) has the same weird fascination as you is always a joy and if you’re lucky enough to find they’ve written songs about it; well, it would just be rude not to love it.
Unlike most of Ghosts of the Great Highway, Carry Me Ohio’s not about a boxer who died tragically young (I said it was a weird fascination), but it’s still a thing of beauty. If there’s a more gorgeous thing written about that particular feeling of joy and pain inspired by your hometown, I don’t know what it is.
Hannah Dunleavy (@funnypunts)
Manic Street Preachers – Little Baby Nothing
As the Tories go full power for the next five years, surely the only silver lining is we might get a top-notch Manics album. Not that they’ve ever produced a duff one, but what I’m hoping for is something as blisteringly raw, furious, honest and no-holds-barred as The Holy Bible, an album that wallows in blood, sweat and a river of tears and that many fans think they’ve never bettered.
Yet prior to the general election, I found myself listening to 1992’s Generation Terrorists on loop. It’s one hell of a rock album, bursting with MASSIVE riffs, bristling with punk attitude and with enough political fire to burn Cameron’s cock off. Little Baby Nothing has porn star Traci Lords singing a tuneful condemnation of her industry and, sweet fancy Moses, it’s gorgeous.
Mickey Noonan (@micksternoonan)
The Charlatans – Then
My sister and I shared a bedroom when we were growing up and, naturally, we mostly wanted to kill each other. A lot of rows were about what we were going to listen to on our suitcase record player or cassette eater – one of those ones you used to load primitive computer games. If you had a spare hour or three.
Musically, I liked what I liked and she liked, um, let’s call it shit.
I can see why my parents thought buying me an off-brand Walkman for Christmas was going to solve the problem. And for me it largely did. In fact, it’s not until now, as I’m listening to this through earphones, that I realise how tinny and God-awful this must have sounded as I played it over and over again at full blast through those ill-fitting pieces of foam crap headphones. And all the while her not being able to say anything, because I was hard of hearing.
If you’re reading this, I’m sorry.
Hannah Dunleavy (@funnypunts)
Drenge – Running Wild
I’ve got to the age where new music baffles me. Sometimes – although I can hardly bear to admit this – it just sounds like a noise. So, when I couldn’t be bothered to find the remote last year during BBC3’s coverage of Glastonbury, I was forced to listen to some New Music item.
After tutting my way through a couple of earnest folky numbers, I found myself accidentally enjoying an intense acoustic set from Drenge. It’s possible I like them because they sound like bits of the best of every garage band from the past 35 years: jangly guitars, spiky lyrics and drumming like a door being kicked in. ‘Drenge’ is Danish for ‘boys’ and brothers Eoin and Rory Loveless are undeniably boyish – gauche even – in interview, but in performance, they have a depth and maturity that belies their years.
Listen to Running Wild as a gorgeous little shoegaze preview and then enjoy the full set.
Sarah Ledger (@sezl)
Alt J – Taro
Here at Standard Issue, we love female role models and positive change in the world. The triangular delta symbol in science signifies change, which is where Alt-J get their name (Δ can be achieved by pressing those keys on certain operating systems).
When their album An Awesome Wave was first released, I spent many a weekend afternoon wandering Hampstead Heath listening to it on loop. Aside from the successful single Breezeblocks, Taro stands out for me. Embracing their signature patchwork of diverse genres in one song, the tune feels quite summery with elements of classical music and a chorus of almost Eastern beats.
It was only when I looked up the incomprehensible lyrics and story behind the song that I realised that it was a sort of posthumous love story between the first female wartime photographer-journalist, Gerda Taro, and her fellow photojournalist partner Robert Capa, both of whom died in action covering the stories of two separate wars.
My friend Greg is a photographer often sent on assignments to cover stories, and this song brought home the reality of the situations he could find himself in. A happy song about a tragic story, from an intelligent band that never fail to surprise you. I am keen to see how this translates to a live performance. Luckily, I finally get to find out this weekend at Latitude!
Suze Kundu (@funsizesuze)
Standard Issue is leaving the cosy confines of its internet base to bring Latitude revellers a dose of our smart, funny and brilliant women this Sunday 19 July. Find out more here: http://standardissuemagazine.com/arts/standard-issue-presents-at-latitude/1567 Views
Some of Standard Issue's brilliant women's carefully crafted words for your reading pleasure.