Friday Music

The summer is just flying by. A heads-up: next week, I’ll be in NYC for a writer’s conference, and so there will be no Friday Music.

In the meantime, though:

Oh, that wacky Master…. in the final two episodes of this season of Doctor Who (which starts airing tonight in the US via the Sci-Fi Channel), the nemesis of the Doctor jammed along to two different bits of music…intended, I suppose, to show how craaaaaaazy he was. Instead, it just made me want to track down the songs. Here they are:

From “The Sound of Drums”: Rogue Traders – “Voodoo Child.”

From “Last of the Time Lords”: Scissor Sisters – “I Can’t Decide.”

and I caught a viewing of Idlewild, the movie by Outkast that attempted to meld hip-hop with the story of a 1930s speakeasy. It wasn’t bad, although suffered from a pretty severe jump in mood right before the end, going from fun, near-cartoonish movie-musical vibe to dark and disturbing in the space of pretty much one scene. Regardless, the music was good. I was surprised, though, to discover that my favorite track (a spotlight number which Andre 3000’s character writes for his love interest to perform at the club), isn’t actually on the soundtrack, being an older track from an earlier album. Either way, it’s brilliant — a fusion of smoky dancehall jazz and Outkast’s quirky oddness, which isn’t quite R&B, not quite hip-hop, but something else entirely: Outkast – “Movin’ Cool (The After Party)”

Being the week of the 4th of July, here’s a patriotic song, in all the goofiness that entails: David Lee Roth’s tribute to the Statue of Liberty. It’s the best song that Van Halen never recorded, and was pretty much the last gasp of David Lee Roth’s career. After this, it was receding hairlines, drug busts and public embarrassment: David Lee Roth – “Yankee Rose.”

Belleruche is a trio out of London whose major-label debut hasn’t been released yet, but I stumbled across this mp3 on one of the blogs I read, and was floored by it. The trio is comprised of a female vocalist, a vintage guitarist, and a turntablist DJ who provides everything else. It’s an amazing mix of jazz, soul, electronica and hip-hop sounds. I cannot recommend this highly enough: Belleruche – “Minor Swing.”

I’m a big fan of the sound of a female vocalist over electronic/hip-hop style compositions. For example, this track from the latest album from electronic/dance darlings Kosheen, featuring the amazing vocals of Sian Evans. I would love to hear what this group would do with a Bond theme….they’re practically there already. Kosheen – “Overkill.”

It’s not all new music on my playlists, as most of you know. Here is one of my favorite “classic rock” tracks. I love the second movement: “It’s the new Mother Nature taking over, the new Splendid Lady come to call….”, and the final verse, when the first and second movements of the song are melded together. Great stuff. The Guess Who – “No Sugar Tonight.”

Lastly, a bit of sample-based oddness from Russia — Chopping up classical music, and making a dancefloor hit…it’s like “Hooked on Classics” for the 21st century: Messer Chups – “Tchaikovsky Beat.”

There you go. See you in a few.

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