An Unexpected Duet
Wendy Smith and Niall Crumlish talk through how a song, story, and sunlight collaboration begins.
Does Anybody Know Any Jokes? Terry Hall, RIP.
By fErGaL Bunbury. There’s been a lot to process. I am so sick of obituaries and it’s only going to get worse. This is where we are in the life of rock music: middle to old age. I suppose I first fell in love with Terry Hall in January 1980, when the Too Much Too…
Gold Soundz 6: ‘Sparrow’ by Mary Hopkin
Mary Hopkin’s ‘Sparrow’ is an unusual inhabitant of my Goosebumps playlist because I heard it for the first time in Autumn 2022. It is not one of those songs that has thousands of associated memories to machete through to get to what the song would say if first heard today. That is itself surprising. ‘Sparrow’…
Gold Soundz 5: ‘Starfish And Coffee’ by Prince
In March 1987, when Sign O’ The Times by Prince came out and The Joshua Tree was just out, I was in first year in secondary school. I was coming to the end of first year in a boys’ school, St Benildus’ College in Kilmacud, where I started in September 1986. That means I was…
Every Note Should Count. Dustin O’Halloran, State, 2015.
I interviewed Dustin O’Halloran by email in 2015. Email interviews can be good and bad. Often bad. Maybe my worst interview of all time was an emailer with Jóhann Jóhannsson, then and now one of my favourite artists of all time, around the time of The Miner’s Hymns. At the time of this Dustin O’Halloran…
Sayonara To The Strokes: Comedown Machine, State, 2013
I reviewed this album in State in March 2013 and it was not quite the end of The Strokes as I thought it might be. They have had a grand total of one album since. The piece disappeared from the internet with the rest of State in 2018 but like everything else I wrote for…
Gold Soundz 4: Palace Brothers’ ‘I Am A Cinematographer’
I came across Palace Brothers early on, in my life and theirs, in October 1993 when I was nineteen and ‘Ohio River Boat Song’ and There Is No-One What Will Take Care of You were Will Oldham’s calling cards. Soon, Oldham’s calling cards would be Palace Music’s ‘New Partner’, from Viva Last Blues, which Glen…
Gold Soundz 3: ‘Gold Soundz’ by Pavement
Throughout six weeks in October and November, I was commuting with my wife Sharon from our home to Beaumont Hospital for treatment with radiotherapy delivered by some of the most expert, kindest, most apologetic radiotherapists one can imagine. They were apologetic because of the four radiotherapy machines in use in St Luke’s in Beaumont, one…
Gold Soundz 2: ‘Apology Accepted’ by The Go-Betweens
‘Apology Accepted’, the final song on The Go-Betweens’ fourth album, Liberty Belle and the Black Diamond Express, has one of my favourite opening couplets. The late Grant McLennan opens ‘Apology Accepted’ with “I used to say dumb things / I guess I still do”. This couplet is one I recall every time I say something dumb,…
Gold Soundz 1: ‘I Am Afraid’ by A House
In November 1991, I read a review for A House’s I Am The Greatest that was written by Lorraine Freeney for Hot Press. I had been reading her for a year or so. I had just started college and I didn’t know Lorraine but I loved her writing and highly valued her opinion. I started…