popularity contest
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.


David Tattersall and André Herman-Düne - "Our Perfect Lovers". Argh; I got CDs everywhere. In binders, stacked on the stereo, piled on the couch, all over my desk. CDs I've owned for years, CDs I've just bought, CDs that arrived in the mail, CDs I need to review for people, CDs I already reviewed... Things get lost and forgotten them remembered and celebrated. I pick up the phone and then notice an album underneath. I open the blinds and find CDs on the windowsill. I'm not complaining - having CDs everywhere is hardly a bad thing. But I am bemoaning. I'm a bemoaner. Because things get misplaced and then I spend two weeks not enjoying something I could have been.

Case in point: "Our Perfect Lovers". I went to see Herman Düne play in Glasgow at the beginning of the month and it was a fantastic gig. Like I say in an upcoming issue of ze Skinny:

French-residing Swedes in a crowded Glasgow bar, and they’re making a gangly folk-sound that’s part birthday party and part broken-down car. It’s four men with bags under their eyes: David-Ivar is chicken-legs and unfeathered elbows, playing guitar and hooting. André is bedraggled, long-armed; he smokes a wilting cigarette. There’s a drummer and a percussionist too, who sometimes swaps in on trumpet. And they play their songs: twisty songs with mispronunciation and pop-culture references, so tender and so human, songs about birds and winter ice and long-distance love. Sometimes a tune goes on a moment too long, but then a few beats later there’s a stamp of snare and a guitar solo outta nowhere, golden and thrilling. So we dance, we nod, we think of our silly lives, our chicken-legged and bedraggled lives, and we hear them sung: right there, in front of us.
What I don't say is that a british band called The Wave Pictures opened, and that I bought a CD-R called Streets of Philadelphia which is by André Herman-Düne and David Tattersall (of the Wave Pictures), and which does indeed contain a cover of the fine Bruce Springsteen tune. (That night I also bought the Junip EP, finally, which in turn has a Bruce cover. 2006 is the year of the Boss: I say this with certainty.)

Anyhow, "Our Perfect Lovers" is a Tattersall tune, with backup vocals by madam Clemence Freschard. And it's a song about using a salt-shaker to christen a tomato. The tomato's name? Chewbacca. The singers adore Chewbacca. They adore Chewbacca in a quiet, slightly trembly way, like a clothes-line looking longingly at the knickers and collared shirts that just blew away on the wind, twistywhirling down the streets.

It looks like you can buy The Streets of Philadelphia by following the instructions on this page. And look at what else is available! André Herman-Düne sings the songs of Dido! Et cetera! Holy. Moly.


The Guillemots - "Trains to Brazil". The UK's going crazy for the Arctic Monkeys but man it makes me so glad that they're going at least a little crazy, buzzy and chattery, about The Guillemots. Forget snickery working-class wit and songs about your mate's girlfriend: The Guillemots sparkle with bombast and gaiety and whimsy. Whimsy is such a fine tradition in british rock'n'roll - see The Beatles, see (yes) The Cure, - but it's so rare on the rock charts these days, where we're overrun by greyfaced sincerity and nudge-nudge-wink-winking tracksuit chaps. The Guillemots sound so much like they're having fun, exulting in the chorus and the horn toodle-oos, the piano trills and phone-rings. They're yelling along at the back of the room, hammering along on the drums, bobbing their heads back and forth and then stampstampstamping when the bass-drum comes back. The Mystery Jets had the right idea but The Guillemots truly cheer. They take the song wherever it wants to go, so playfully: to the train-station, to the parade float, to the swan lake, to the surprise party.

James sent me this and when he was writing about "Trains to Brazil", a month ago, he pointed to "Come on Eileen", the Arcade Fire, and ELO's "My Blue Sky". Me, I point to that time when you ran, ran straight down those wet streets, straight as an arrow, and as you ran from where you were coming from to where you were going you realised there was a true and real smile on your face, just there, true and real, like I said. And you were running straght as an arrow and you jumped, for no other reason but because.

(I see Dodge talked about The Guillemots too, just a couple weeks ago. Blogosphere on the case!)


We are humbled and so, so warmed to learn that we are a finalist at the 2006 Bloggies, in the category of Best Writing. This is thanks to you. So thank-you. (Truly.) I'm a little surprised at how happy this made me. (Us? Who knows.)

The competition includes the formidable Dooce, who is also nominated for Lifetime Achievement, and another blog that posts photographs of celebrities and then talks digustedly of their "Incredible Sinking Breasts". Needless to say, our mixed metaphors stand little chance of victory. If you are kind, however - if you are a friend of this blog, or a lover, - please do vote for us.

Very few of my nominees made it to the final list. Which is baffling and makes me feel embarrassed. Nevertheless, if you are looking for some more people to vote for, might I recommend the foodblog Chocolate & Zuchini (best european weblog), indie-rock news-and-reviewblog Chromewaves (best canadian weblog), Indie Interviews (best podcast), You Ain't No Picasso (best teen weblog - oh matt, you are so cu-ute!), and Boing Boing (motley things).

Aaron Wherry wrote by far the most extensive and compelling essay on the Canadian election, Ashlee Simpson and Barack Obama that I have read this week. It is definitely advanced and quite possibly a Marvel.

The Lipstick of Noise is a poetry mp3blog!!!!!!

Come Pick Me Up is a new mp3blog with an emphasis on unsigned acts. Please therefore ignore the front-and-centre post on Ryan Adams. There are so many mp3blogs these days, of such diverse quality. Some have bold and beautiful writing; others have an amazing perspective, casting light onto genres I would never otherwise hear; others simply have great taste. And the rest are awful. Don't tell me about another MySpace band that sounds sorta like a given indie rock band. Share only treasures with me. Come Pick Me Up has taste, and is worth reading. Go.

Owen-Final-Fantasy says he's a couple of days away from finishing his new album, He Poos Clouds. "It sounds funny, glorious and much like career suicide. Every time we work on it me and Leon get feelings of jumping off cliffs. ... Pitchfork will hate it, the UK will ignore it and France will call it the Album Of The Year." I have been privately advised that a proposed alternative title was Alan Rickman: The Album. Grab some fresh FF live stuff here.

Beautiful China.

Posted by Sean at January 24, 2006 7:50 PM

Congrats on the nomination!

Trains to Brazil is a superb track isn't it. I played the video to death when I first discovered it (and the single wasn't yet out). Luckily I see it has returned to their website - for a while there I thought maybe I'd personally blown their bandwidth... oops!

Posted by Adrian McEwen at January 25, 2006 6:20 AM

I love Guillemots! First song I heard was 'Made Up Lovesong #43' and loved it, and 'Trains To Brazil' is another amazing song.

Posted by Alex at January 25, 2006 6:53 AM

thanks sean. You rock. I'm glad you dig Come Pick Me Up!

Posted by Lizzy at January 25, 2006 10:43 AM

Great tracks. That Brazil one in particular: happy happy joy joy, love love love. Such fun.

Those China pics are beautiful indeed. Amazing.

Some of my nominations didn't make it either (Girish, Spread the Good Word).

Posted by Tuwa at January 25, 2006 11:45 AM

"And the rest are awful. Don't tell me about another MySpace band that sounds sorta like a given indie rock band. Share only treasures with me. "

I heartily agree. You all here have certainly provided me with many treasures. That is why you guys are the best. Thank you!

Posted by karin at January 25, 2006 5:01 PM

I gave you a vote !!

Posted by Zaidie Ben at January 25, 2006 8:15 PM

i voted for you guys, because you rule.

and, how do you choose what new, and/or upcoming blogs get a mention on this site? i'd LOVE it if you guys mentioned mine here, or at least gave it a read:


you're my blogging heroes - thanks.


Posted by the real Jerimee at January 25, 2006 10:17 PM

thanks so much for that andré/david/clémence track. it's lovely.

Posted by sibsi at January 26, 2006 6:04 AM

yes, the guillemots are great. i had posted "trains to brazil" back in early december; it's just one of those songs that make the world seem that much better.

they've also taught me a lesson. in the past, i've ignored people who tYpe LikE tHis. imagine all the great music i must've missed out on!

Posted by fred at January 26, 2006 7:59 PM

Come Pick Me Up is now promoting Train, which outweighs your positive recommendation. Consider him prejudged.

Posted by J at February 2, 2006 3:07 AM

I really enjoyed your website. Visit my website on YouTube for some gramaphone and victrola vids.

So long,

Posted by Baris at November 30, 2007 10:33 PM

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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.

Site design and header typography by Neale McDavitt-Van Fleet. The header graphic is randomized: this one is by Neale McDavitt-Van Fleet.
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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our favourite blogs
(◊ means they write about music)

Back to the World
La Blogothèque
Weird Canada
Destination: Out
Endless Banquet
A Grammar (Nitsuh Abebe)
Ill Doctrine
A London Salmagundi
Words and Music
Petites planétes
Gorilla vs Bear
Silent Shout
Clouds of Evil
The Dolby Apposition
Awesome Tapes from Africa
Matana Roberts
Pitchfork Reviews Reviews
i like you [podcast]
Nicola Meighan
radiolab [podcast]
CKUT Music
plethoric pundrigrions
Wattled Smoky Honeyeater
The Clear-Minded Creative
Torture Garden
Passion of the Weiss
Juan and Only
Horses Think
White Hotel
Then Play Long (Marcello Carlin)
Uno Moralez
Coming Up For Air (Matt Forsythe)
my love for you is a stampede of horses
It's Nice That
Song, by Toad
In Focus
WTF [podcast]
The Rest is Noise (Alex Ross)
My Daguerreotype Boyfriend
The Hood Internet

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st-viateur bagel
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le pick up
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chez boris
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drawn + quarterly
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blue skies turn black
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