"you don't need darkness to do what you think is right" new geographic music
i tried to buy this compilation for ages but just couldn't find it anywhere.
in the end i found a copy of it in rough trade the afternoon before a sea aunts/sancho panza gig at on the rocks in london.
it was to be yet another of those hidden gems i usually seem to find in the best kind of record shops. shops where i need to spend hours looking through racks of cd and vinyl carefully weighing up how much i need the music contained in the vinyl and cheap plastic against how much money i have in my pocket. this cd cost me seven pounds and ninety nine pence, i would have paid more.
geographic is the label run by by stephen pastel, katrina mitchell (of the pastels) and laurence bell (domino records). there is a hand picked compilation tape feel to the album which is so refreshing in a world full of tv advertised-heard it all before-nothing exclusive compilation albums. the disc begins in fine form with "into/everybody is a star" by the pastels. a great pop song with a lovely sentiment and singalong ba ba ba backing vocals.
my favourite tracks are "stone in the water" by maher shalal hash baz (who first came to my attention with a track on a free domino cd given away with the wire) the track here is taken from the amazing "maher on water" cd. like the pastels this is once again a great pop song, the instrumentation is really interesting, acoustic guitar fits together with male and feemale vocal, and a variety of wood and brass instruments. "me on the beach" is another firm favourite of mine on this cd, it's by nagisa ni te. i don't know what they are singing about because i was too lazy to leard any foreign languages at school and have not found the time since, however this does not take away from the enjoyment of listening to the beatiful, simple melodies of the girl/boy vocals. it sound like there's some harmonica in there, with acoustic and (loud at the end) electric guitars along with bass and drums adding to the rhythm but quietly.
sister vanilla provide a piano and guitar led acoustic song entitled "pastel blue", it's a story about crashing a car, listening to the pastels and writing some songs to help make it through the night. i think i once heard it in a state of semi-sleep on john peels radio 1 show, it sounded gorgeous then and still does now.
pedro (from one of
this sites favourite labels; melodic) turns in "amber"
an electronic-ish instrumental piece of music with some haunting
string, brass, music box and drum sounds, at least it sounds like
that but fed into something with an electronic current passing
through it. there are loads more exciting tracks on here too, 16
of them in fact before you get to kevin shields
"outro", track 17 and the end of the disc. if you're a
fan of kevin shields i'm sure you will love this. the track is in
response to the pastels intro track and takes this as a starting
point, then adding backwards noises and moving the whole thing
into a complete sonic delight. if you don't want to find this cd
by chance you can probably buy it from dominos wesite shop, then
again if you did that then you'd miss out on looking around
strange smelling little record shops, the choice at the end of
the day is yours
(reviewed supplied by matt shaw from tex la homa)