Excuses – Diaries – De Rosa

I don’t blog very often.  Not surprising really, I was never very good at keeping a diary.  Buried somewhere in my parents’ house are several diaries from the late 80s/early 90s which were updated faithfully until about mid-January; including a brilliant Roald Dahl diary which had loads of Quentin Blake illustrations.

Dahl Diary - 1992

Dahl Diary - 1992

I think it’s just as well that I didn’t keep it up. My earliest attempts at diary keeping included only dull description of everyday activity – getting up, brushing teeth, etc – and nothing about thoughts, or interesting/unusual things that might have happened. But then I was only just learning to write, and my spelling was pretty good, so it’s maybe forgivable.

Anyway, I thought I should try to update the blog, and I’ve been moved to say a bit about my latest album purchase –De Rosa‘s Prevention.  I saw De Rosa a couple of years ago in the 3 Sisters in Edinburgh, think it was a Baby Tiger gig. My band at the time were due to support them but had to switch dates, however I’d heard good things from the others so we went along anyway. Despite the venue’s limitations, their sound was tight and virtually flawless, and although I had only heard one or two of their tunes beforehand (probably a quick listen to their myspace), the whole set sucked me in.  I bought ‘Mend’, their debut album, from them that night, and have since bought it again via iTunes, as the CD was ‘borrowed’, never to be seen again.

I’ve seen them a few times since, most recently at a couple of gigs in Glasgow, where they have been playing some of their new tunes.  Unfortunately I thought the gigs were let down a little by the overall sound mix, particularly in Nice ‘N’ Sleazies, (disappointing given how good they had sounded previously in a venue with poorer set-up, on paper), and maybe they weren’t quite so engaging on stage as I’d remembered.  However, even on first listen, and with those limitations, the new songs were obviously cracking. I never use the word cracking in that context, but I might add it to my average-at-best vocabulary from now on.

Prevention album cover

Prevention album cover

 

There have already been several positive reviews in national press etc, so I won’t say much, but having downloaded Prevention,  it undoubtedly surpasses their debut album – no mean feat.  There isn’t a poor song amongst the ten tracks.  It’s frequently beautiful; in parts it rocks, although it rarely tries to, favouring substance and subtlety.  There is even some Friday night dance potential (will we ever hear ‘Nocturne for an Absentee’ in an Oran Mor or Liquid Room indie night?).  Even given this variety, it holds together, it  flows really well.  A personal highlight (among many) is the dark 80s industrial synth middle-eight in Pest, which could easily have sounded awkward within a song which is otherwise one of the sweetest acoustic tunes you’re likely to hear; but it fits.  There may not be anything particularly new in what they are doing, and there’s no pandering to fashion, but I don’t think there’s another band around at the moment, certainly in Scotland, who can produce a collection of songs as complete and as satisfying. 

I guess where they go from now on will depend on how the album is promoted, and how well they perform/come across on their upcoming album tour.   They probably deserve to achieve more than cult recognition, but the music biz is fickle.  Whatever happens, I’m looking forward to the album launch gig – 20th March at Captain’s Rest, Glasgow.

March 10, 2009. Uncategorized. 4 comments.

Lidl

I’ve not been to Lidl since I was at Uni.  I’ve never been to Lidl before 9am. But this morning, all that changed.

photo1

I might not have been tempted to buy one of these had the price not been slashed so generously. In the end I bought two. Bargain.

December 30, 2008. Uncategorized. Leave a comment.

Blogalicious.

Oh Dear. This is my first blog. It might be my only blog, there may never be another post. One of my concerns: I might not have time to be a regular blogger. In fact, I have lots of time, just don’t tend to use it very efficiently. But then is blogging a good, efficient use of time? Probably not. Unless you get paid to do it. I don’t.

However, I do like having a look at other peoples’ blogs now and again, friends, people I know, and they often make me smile, or at very least update me a bit on what’s going on, and it’s nice. So maybe that’s why I’m doing this. 

As you can see, this blog is called ‘blameyourelf’. I’ve used this phrase as my main email address since early uni, having come up with it while doodling in a lecture. This was before the film ‘Elf’, which used a similar self/elf pun on many of its  tag-lines.  I’ve never seen the film, and I never will, I refuse to; because I presume it’s crap. Nothing anyone can say will change my stance on that. Although looking at the poster, I notice it stars the latest addition to the Dragon’s Den.


 Anyway, I now get a bit embarrassed giving out my email address, particularly in work related situations, but I’ve had it for so long now it would be tricky to change. So, it’s probably an okay, if obscure, blog name, which I may change in time if I can think of anything better.  As long as it hasn’t become embedded in peoples’ hearts and minds by then. 

Tonight, I’m heading through to Edinburgh, for a night of cold frosty cider fuelled fun, perhaps. Hopefully I’ll blog again if I can think of something good to say. Maybe tonight will provide some inspiration?

December 13, 2008. Uncategorized. Leave a comment.