Finishing the week on a very high note, ‘Moonlight Mile’ is an astonishing song. It closes The Rolling Stones’s definitive 1971 album Sticky Fingers on a sombre yet euphoric note. Listen to the those gorgeous string and piano arrangements in the second half. The Stones’ next record Exile On Main St. would continue and expand the sound established here. Have a great weekend.
Released in May 1972, Honky Château was Elton John’s fifth studio album and the one that started to propel the singer-songwriter to rock star status. Where the Side 1 featured ‘Rocket Man’, Side 2 served up the classic ‘Mona Lisas & Mad Hatters’. But more amazing than all of that, this is the first Elton John track on this blog. Yup, that’s right.
Bad relationships + lot of drugs = Gold Dust Woman. But aside of all the symbolism, this was a song rich in confidence. Listen to the depth, the complications and Stevie Nicks’ vocals. Reputedly recorded at 4 a.m. after a long day of trying to get it right, the finished article would fittingly serve as the last track on Fleetwood Mac’s Rumours.
Blur’s ‘The Universal’ sphere is the centrepiece of a song about drug-induced happiness. Based on A Clockwork Orange, the striking video was a fitting backdrop to Britpop, Blur and the imagination of Damon Albarn. “How long have you been a red man?” “About 15 years.” “What were you before?” “Blue.” Have a great weekend.
With Greetings From L.A., Tim Buckley is pure californication. He had been sleazy before, but the seven tracks on this album were full on sex. The album’s closing track ‘Make It Right’ grooves away the night with a disco-like set of accompanying strings. “Come on and beat me, whip me, spank me, come on make it right again,” he begs, with a rawness that would make Robert Plant swoon.
‘Any Day Now’ is the opening, standout track from Elbow’s debut album Asleep In The Back. Depite the fame and popularity that would follow a few years later, they would sound no better than this. Drummer Richard Jupp lays down a signature snare beat accompanied by singer Guy Garvey’s Peter Gabriel impression. Have a good week.
Samuelsounds begins a short hiatus this festive season. I leave you with my favourite sounds of 2017 in no particular order. See you in the new year.
Honourable mentions also go to: Real Estate for ‘Darling‘; Foxygen for ‘On Lankershim‘; Mac DeMarco for ‘This Old Dog‘; John Mayer for ‘Moving On and Getting Over‘; Big Thief for ‘Shark Smile‘; Kevin Morby for ‘Come To Me Now‘; St. Vincent for ‘New York‘; Rex Orange County for ‘Edition‘; Public Service Broadcasting for ‘Progress‘; Lorde for ‘Green Light‘; and alt- J for’3WW‘.
What can you say about the The Verve’s ‘Bitter Sweet Symphony’ that has not already been said before. The song was ubiquitous in 1997/98. Richard Ashcroft had taken Andrew Oldham Orchestra’s strings cover of The Rolling Stones ‘Last Time’ and realised its potential by writing those sublime lyrics. The bitter sweet would follow when the Stones’ former manager Allen Klein reneged on an agreement they had with Decca and demanded 100% of the song’s royalties, stripping the Verve of their undoubted achievement.