WHERE THERE'S COAL THERE'S
by Sean
Please note: MP3s are only kept online for a short time, and if this entry is from more than a couple of weeks ago, the music probably won't be available to download any more.

 

Essie Jain - "Indefinable". If you slow a diamond enough, slow it right down, you begin to see a different glitter: there, beneath the prettty, something sad and beautiful and smelling of coal. On her album Essie Jain seems drawn to both the nice and the weird (both of which can be traps), but here she's found something perfect, flickering, and slow, slow, slow. There's a desolation to the song, a stillness that recalls the earliest (spooky) work of Kathryn Williams, and Imogen Heap's "Hide and Seek". Just Jain singing to the mines, tides, a doomed love. It's not those deep cellos that root the song: it's the guitar, uninterrupted, unflinching, inevitable. Breathtaking. [buy]

Cathy Davey - "Sing for your Supper (demo)". One of my favourites of last year, falling just shy of the list posted to StG. How you like it depends entirely on how two things feel against your ears: the folds of Davey's voice, indie-girl cute; and the martial press, the Western Front. It's rare that you hear a song of not-yet-requited love where the power lies with the lover not the beloved (that is, other than stalker songs). But Davey claims strength, conviction and bombast (drums, guitars, her own voice in chorale): "one way or the other / I'll be making eyes at you". You feel like she'd knock down warehouses just for the chance to stand and see you. (Thanks Shane.) [more of Cathy Davey]

---

Elsewhere:

With "The Five Magical Sex Acts of Cory Kennedy", The Cold Inclusive continues its series of absurd, mesmerising, almost magic-realist celebrity fan-fiction. It's masterfully written, and very, very funny.

Nick Sylvester (not the biggest Funeral fan) writes something pretty on-the-money about the appeal of Arcade Fire.

Matthew Perpetua talks with Rob Sheffield about mix-tapes, music, zines and blogging. It's fun to read two people talking who clearly just love good songs. But my favourite line is a throw-away that Matthew makes about the Yeah Yeah Yeahs' "Maps": "the vocals are like subtitles". Yes.

Locust St. has a remarkable entry on the last days of Buddy Holly. The prose is spry, evocative, moving. (Unfortunately the rare Holly mp3s aren't half as interesting.) It's these kind of stories (albeit with a few more lies!) that probably make up my favourite kind of writing-about-music. (Thanks to Amy for the tip.)

Please do leave a comment for Eleanor Meredith, our guestblogger earlier this week.

Posted by Sean at March 2, 2007 8:15 AM
Comments

Sean--

Much thanks for the mention. And wish the Holly tracks had resonated more with you, though I admit they are pretty basic demos.

chris

Posted by Chris at March 2, 2007 9:28 AM

Can't agree with Nick Sylvester, though I'm firmly (perhaps too firmly- entrenched even?) of the opinion that AF are pants.

But your other two links on Buddy Holly and Rob Sheffield were great. And as a certain gent once said, two out of three ain't bad. ;)

Posted by Robert P at March 3, 2007 5:32 AM

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about said the gramophone
This is a daily sampler of really good songs. All tracks are posted out of love. Please go out and buy the records.

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"And I shall watch the ferry-boats / and they'll get high on a bluer ocean / against tomorrow's sky / and I will never grow so old again."
about the authors
Sean Michaels is the founder of Said the Gramophone. He is a writer, critic and author of the theremin novel Us Conductors. Follow him on Twitter or reach him by email here. Click here to browse his posts.

Emma Healey writes poems and essays in Toronto. She joined Said the Gramophone in 2015. This is her website and email her here.

Jeff Miller is a Montreal-based writer and zinemaker. He is the author of Ghost Pine: All Stories True and a bunch of other stories. He joined Said the Gramophone in 2015. Say hello on Twitter or email.

Mitz Takahashi is originally from Osaka, Japan who now lives and works as a furniture designer/maker in Montreal. English is not his first language so please forgive his glamour grammar mistakes. He is trying. He joined Said the Gramophone in 2015. Reach him by email here.

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PAST AUTHORS
Dan Beirne wrote regularly for Said the Gramophone from August 2004 to December 2014. He is an actor and writer living in Toronto. Any claim he makes about his life on here is probably untrue. Click here to browse his posts. Email him here.

Jordan Himelfarb wrote for Said the Gramophone from November 2004 to March 2012. He lives in Toronto. He is an opinion editor at the Toronto Star. Click here to browse his posts. Email him here.
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