Something for the Weekend

I remember after Ben and Tracey embraced electronics and club beats on Walking Wounded seeing reviews on Amazon from old fans complaining about how much they hated their new sound. I assumed they were people who couldn’t dance.


Football. Bloody Hell

How great has this World Cup been so far? Best football tournament I can remember in years. Lots of attacking play, drama, big teams messing up, minor ones punching above their weight, and England actually giving another team a good spanking. Oh, and GERMANY GOT KNOCKED OUT IN THE GROUP STAGE! HUZZAH!

I’m sure it could still all go tits up for England but I wouldn’t be an England fan if I didn’t have futile dreams.

Download: With A Little Luck – Wings (mp3)

This is one of those Paul McCartney tunes derided by some for being too soft and sappy but I’ve always loved it, especially the synth sound. This is the full length album version with even more of it.

I Have Twelve Inches

This record came out in 1985 right before House changed dance music completely and I’ve always thought of it as one of the last great old skool tracks. It was produced by legendary Disco knob-twiddler Patrick Adams so it really is like one of the last hurrahs of the previous generation.

Like me, it may be old skool but it’s still funky and fresh. That loping groove could go on forever far as I’m concerned.

Download: Thinking About Your Love (12″ Version) – Skipworth & Turner (mp3)

New Monday

Bon Voyage, the second album by Melody’s Echo Chamber, has finally arrived six years after her brilliant debut. During that time Melody split with collaborator/partner Kevin Parker and had an accident that nearly killed her so the fact that she’s back making music at all is cause for celebration.

It’s a strange beast. Meandering and overstuffed with ideas, there isn’t much in the way of catchy hooks, and Melody changes language as often as the songs change direction (a lot) which makes it even more unfocused. But it sounds fantastic and has an hypnotic pull that makes me want to listen to it over and over again.

The Sun Has Got His Hat On

Because it is now officially summer and I’m being too lazy to think of anything else here’s a happy sunny tune. This is one of several songs from the musical Hair that were hits in the summer of 1969. My mum didn’t have this record but it’s one of those Sunshine Pop tunes that was always in the air when I was a kid.

They really don’t write lyrics like “Sabba sibby sabba, Nooby abba dabba” anymore.

Download: Good Morning Starshine – Oliver (mp3)

Daughters of The Revolution

Prince’s generosity to female artists extended beyond just doling out songs for them to sing to having them in his own band as important parts of his sound. After Sheila E, his most famous alumni are probably guitarist Wendy Melvoin and keyboard player Lisa Coleman who were in The Revolution until Prince broke up the band in 1986.

Leaving a God-like genius and going it alone is often a recipe for disaster but Wendy and Lisa’s self-titled debut album is marvelous and a real hidden treasure of the 1980s. Though Prince had nothing to do with the album it does share some of the sophisticated and bright, daisy-age vibe of his more poppy songs but, free to do their own thing, the girls also show off their musical chops in a more Jazzy direction on some tracks.

Another ex-Revolution member Bobby Z helps out on songwriting and drumming so the album is like Prince’s old band showing him what they could do without him. I hope he missed them because he never had a band as good as The Revolution again.

Download: Honeymoon Express – Wendy & Lisa (mp3)


To us Brits, Sheena Easton was the nice Scottish lass who became famous because of a TV show and had a couple of pleasant pop hits. We thought of her more like one of The Nolan Sisters than Madonna.

We had all but forgotten about her by the mid-80s, so it was a bit of a surprise to find that she was doing well in America and making records with Prince. PRINCE! Our Sheena! How the hell did that happen?

Apparently The Purple One saw her on television one night and decided to write a song for her — the sort of thing you do when you’re a creative genius with music gushing out of you — which turned out to be the terrific and utterly filthy “Sugar Walls.” That wasn’t the end of their collaboration either. Prince wrote other songs for her, she sang on “U Got The Look”, and even wrote lyrics for him. That’s quite the journey for a girl who got her big break from Esther Rantzen.

Though this was a hit in the States it didn’t even make the charts in the UK. Maybe we just didn’t want to hear our Sheena singing a song about her vagina.

Download: Sugar Walls (12″ Dance Mix) – Sheena Easton (mp3)