Thursday, January 27, 2011

In Awe Of Barefaced Talent

Putting stuff in pigeonholes is a typical response to discovering anything new.

For example, when I saw two dozen badgers doing a rehearsal of a synchronised dancing and swimming routine in the garden pond, I immediately filed it under New Wave Buzby Berkley.

Shallow of me, I know.

So, when I tell folk how much I like the new album by Turtle Soup, they always ask me what it's like. But despite all my years of pigeonholing things, I never have a clear answer; it's terrific stuff, and hard to categorise.

I'm lucky enough to known the band's singer/songwriter, Fran Morter. Fran collaborates with guitarist Steve Segar to craft the songs, which are introspective and very personal offerings. Husband Roger Morter plays bass, and Phil Edey produces an amazingly versatile percussive sound with a single African Djembe drum. Here they are:

Young, beautiful, talented - bastards!This piccy (L to R: Roger, Fran, Phil, Steve) is one of mine, and sans logo might be used by the band at some point. By the way, the picture is definitely worth a click. Lots of cool detail.

The new album, their second, is called Never Alone. Six tracks, dark and elusive, and very rewarding. And ahead of the album's CD release, the band have decided to make all of the tracks available to listen to; just click here to launch their website.

But can I pigeonhole it, musically? I know you want me to.

Well, I sometimes say it's folky, but less so than their first offering.

And sometimes I say it's alternative, but that's more of a battered bucket than a useful description.

I think the offical music biz line is that it's progressive folk, but the best description I can think of is that it's bloody marvellous!

That gets people's attention. And better yet, it's true.

Go on, check out these lovely talented people! *

[* UPDATE - if you feel so moved, I've been told that you can buy the album as a download from Amazon and iTunes, and that a physical CD release is coming soon. 10% of the proceeds from Never Alone will be donated to The Marine Conservation Society, the UK charity protecting our seas, shores and wildlife.]

Right, the badgers are filming tomorrow, so early to bed.


This blog entry is protected by copyright © Indigo Roth, 2011

Saturday, January 15, 2011

The Symmetry Of Eleven

As I flick through the news, I notice that some bright spark of a scientist has been upsetting people by pointing out that classical horoscopes are wrong.

His closer examination of the sky reveals conclusively that there's a thirteen zodiac sign - Ophiuchus the Serpent Bearer - and that this means changes to the dates of all the others. Did you see that?

Were I truly interested in my Scorpio heritage and the fact that apparently I'm now a Libra, I might get upset. However, I've been a devout follower of The Elevenfold Zodiac for years. This was cobbled together by myself and iDifficult after a particularly heavy night out. The ale was good and the curry superb. Just when we thought it was all over, the schnapps gave us second wind. And then the curry gave us our third, and we had to evacuate.

When we awoke, we discovered the horoscopic secrets of the universe written in crayon on iDifficult's lounge wall. We considered this an epiphany, and of overriding importance to the world. But that was not accepted as a defence by iDifficult's long-suffering wife, and once again we had to evacuate.

Happy days.

Anyway, to give you a taste, here's today's horoscope.

Elevenfold Zodiac
by Mystic Fred, Week Ending Wed 19 January 2011

The Cosmic Sock (Jan 2 - Feb 7)
Termites in your wooden leg get the day off to a bad start. You may soon feel you're moving in strange circles. Lucky fruit: Kumquat.
The Rusty Saw (Feb 12 - Mar 15)
A flock of seagulls prove once and for all that you really shouldn't wear white before Arbor Day. Or indeed, black. Lucky swelling: Gout.
The Swing (Mar 19 - April 22)
You know, then you don't, then you know, then you don't. Just decide, already! Blueberry muffin, ice cream, or both? Lucky egg: Chocolate ostrich.
The Traffic Light (April 25 - May 29)
The gaping hole in your social life turns out to be a collapsed sewer. Hairy men with buttcracks will knock soon. Lucky soup: Butternut squash.
The Casserole (June 3 - July 10)
Royal matters consume you today, but the Queen Of Sheba is not your friend. I mean, seriously. Think about it. Lucky medium: Watercolour.
The Stain (July 13 - Aug 15)
Time is a great healer, but lousy at removing ground-in treacle. Shock therapy provides relief from an embarrassing itch. Lucky bird: Gooney.
The Inflated Bladder (Aug 20 - Sept 25)
They're somebody else's piranha, perhaps a heartbroken child's. So check the lost and found before keeping them. Lucky celebrity: Topol
The Stuffed Terrier (Sept 28 - Oct 28)
A trip to the great outdoors will inspire you to stay home more. Remember that canned goods last longest. Lucky cake: Raspberry danish.
The Paint Pot (Nov 01 - Nov 20)
As a wise man once observed, liquorice is no substitute for charcoal. Rain will almost certainly stop play. Sorry. Lucky president: Adams.
The Crowbar (Nov 22 - Dec 27)
Violence may be the answer! Be sure to carry your chainsaw for the Zombie Apocalypse descending after lunch. Lucky vein: Hepatic portal.
The Amoeba (All unlisted dates)
You confirm that you're the glue holding the universe together when you end up stuck to an aardvark. Lucky mammal: Not the aardvark.
Some small-minded types have suggested that there is actually a twelfth zodiac sign in this system, and that it was lost to the world because the crayon broke. Even though I can't remember, I'm going to scotch this rumour. I'm not going back to fix it all on a whim of some non-believer; it's just a bit of fun after all.

By the way, we've still not been forgiven by iDifficult's wife for the crayon on the lounge wall.

Nor for the fireworks.

But that's another story.


This blog entry is protected by copyright © Indigo Roth, 2011