Lazy Monday : Alpha

The Melankolic label has brought us many Bristol-based bands and triphop acts. It was the label on which I discovered Craig Armstrong (The space between us) as well as this band : Alpha.
Although they miss the punch of Tricky and Massive Attack and lack the complete smoothness of Portishead, their songs are exquisite appetisers for anybody with ears. And they are the perfect band to play on a lazy Monday...
In September of last year they have released their new album, The sky is mine, which I haven't heard yet. But I did and still do enjoy their debut, Come from heaven.

Enjoy these songs :

  • My things (mp3)
  • Hazeldub (mp3)
  • Appleorange (mp3)

You can buy the album Come from heaven here

You can buy their new album here


Soundtrack : Kill Bill vol. 2

From the soundtrack of the second part of Quentin Tarantino's Kill Bill, I have two songs today.
The first is a nice version of A satisfied mind (mp3) by Johnny Cash and the second is Japanese : Urami bushi (mp3), by Meiko Kaji.

A satisfied mind is a song I discovered years ago on the same-titled album by The Walkabouts, which converted me to americana...

You can buy the soundtrack here
You can buy the Walkabouts album here


Gastr del Sol

Although I enjoy both reading and listening to (good) music, the combination of both is hardly ever successfull. Mostly, the music is too dominantly there for me to be able to concentrate on what I'm reading, or I'd have to turn the volume so low I can hardly hear it (and still then it can carry away my attention quite easily).
One band, however, that manages to do the trick for me, is Gastr del Sol. It's not that their music is not appetizing enough (for it certainly is) ; there's just something about it that makes it possible for me to both listen to it and keep on reading concentratedly.

The book I was finishing reading today while listening to them, is the quite wonderfull Encyclopaedia of Snow, written by Sarah Emily Miano. It's not like any other book I've ever read, and although not all of it is great, I quite enjoyed it.

Enjoy these songs (perhaps while reading the book) :

  • Black horse (mp3)
  • A puff of dew (mp3)
  • Bauchredner (mp3)

You can buy the Gastr del Sol album Camoufleur here

You can buy the book Encyclopaedia of snow here


RMX : Deeper and deeper - Joi

The British band Joi has strong roots in Indian music. After some silence (well, they were still busy in clubland, it would seem), they have returned with this remix for My love, a song which they recorded with Bruno Ellingham.

You can buy their music here


Lazy Monday : Green On Red

One of my favorite americana bands from when I was really young, is Green On Red. I have ever since enjoyed Chuck Prophet as a solo artist, almost as much as I have and am still enjoying those G.O.R. songs.
For a guy from Belgium, these songs were the ultimate escape to the rocky deserts of Texas and Arizona (well, at least they were in my imagination at that time), without having to embark on the over-produced, way too slick songs of the likes of Garth Brooks. I got acquainted with the band in 1989, with their very fine album This time around, which for me sounded a bit like The Rolling Stones gone country. But my favorite song will always be Little things in life.
And now, almost twenty years later, they still bring peace to my heart and quiet to my mind. What better way to spend a Monday evening then ?

Enjoy these songs :

  • Little things in life (mp3)
  • Shed a tear (for the lonesome) (mp3)
  • Broken radio (mp3)

You can buy the albums of Green On Red here


Windy & Destiny

A voice that is full of craving and a lingering melody : if you combine those, you might end up with a song from Israeli band Windy & Destiny. This duo has just released its debut album, Words for such a riot. The band claims to bring a mix of pop, indie and psychedelic music.

Check out these songs :

They will be playing some concerts in Israel :

  • March 8th : Levontin 7, Tel Aviv (6 PM) (at the Folkale 4 Festival)
  • March 19th : Casco Urban Lab Cafe, Tel Aviv (10 PM) : free !
  • March 26th : Uganda, Jerusalem (10 PM)

You can buy their album here


Deceased : Jeff Healey

Yesterday, Canadian singer and guitarist Jeff Healey died of cancer, at the age of 41.
I remember him from his show with The Jeff Healey Band at Rock Torhout, a Belgian festival, in 1990. They had just released their second album, Hell to pay, which included a fantastic cover of the Beatles' While my guitar gently weeps, and another great song, I think I love you too much. Jeff Healey also starred with his band in the movie Road House, which featured Patrick Swayze (which you're most likely to remember from Dirty dancing). In those days, blues was hot for a while, and Jeff was among various other to taste some success (like Bonnie Raitt, Robert Cray, John Lee Hooker with The healer and Gary Moore).
What made him stand out (not that his music wasn't great...), was his extraordinary way of playing the guitar, which rested on his lap with its back on his knees and he sort of picked the strings.
He had just completed work on his latest album, Mess of blues, which is due for release on March 20th in Europe and April 22nd in the US.

You can buy his music here

Album of the month (Feb 08) : Polynya - Polynya

This album was released in July of last year. North Carolinan band Polynya reminds me very much of Lush and Curve, two bands from the beginning of the nineties that had the same guitar-keyboards-drums sound which is so richly spread all over this debut album.

Opener Old West (mp3) is the ideal opener for this record, as it gets us fully acquainted with the sound we'll be hearing throughout the rest of it. Without a trace is as dreamy as the title suggests and Tarantula offers us more prominent drums to start a song that settles quite nicely in one's head. Paper planes (mp3), with angelic voices of Amelia, Andrea and Luke crawling over the sharp edges of bells and guitars, offers a new taste of what this band is capable of. And we are treated with even more surprising (and yet recognisable) songs : Black cherry and two songs that are like resting places on a walk, Cubicle and Essy Persson.
If you liked bands like Belly, Lush, Curve and The Breeders, you're definitely gonna like this band. Check it out !

You can buy their album by mailing them or at Amazon

Album of the month March : Eldorado - Stephan Eicher


The Politik remix + artwork competition

This competition is open to anyone and everyone who'd like to have a go at remixing one (or more) songs from The Politik's debut album. The winning remixes will be compiled into the official remix album The Politik Remixed to be released on both physical and digital formats. The second part of the competition is an artwork remix competition for the cover art of the official release. Download the original artwork by Joshua Mays and have a go at reworking it in the spirit of the Remix.
All entries must be received by April 14, 2008.

For more information, download links for all the files and the submission info, click:

Hear the original album at