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Elliott Smith – Either/Or May 24, 2008

Posted by Rish in adult alternative, soft rock.
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I discovered both these tracks from the late artist Elliott Smith some time ago but was recently reacquainted with the song Angeles after hearing it randomly from a great cut-and-paste album called Prime Cuts by audio bytes for autobots (download here or stream here). Bit of a strange connection but I’m glad I came across it again as I managed to get hold of his album Either/Or from which these two tracks I’m going to share are taken. Angeles is a beautifully stripped-down track that incredibly mellow and hazy. It’s easy to see the artists today that have been influenced by him such as Joshua Radin and José González.

Elliott Smith – Angeles
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[ From the Album “Either/Or” | Buy CD: | Download: ]

The rest of the album plays to a similar ambiance including this track which is slightly tongue-in-cheek (“I could be another fool/or an exception to the rule/you tell me the morning after”) and lighter in mood then the other tracks on Either/Or. If you like what you hear I definitely recommend checking out the rest of the album.

Elliott Smith – Say Yes
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[ From the Album “Either/Or” | Buy CD: | Download: ]

Music from my travels… May 5, 2008

Posted by Rish in pop, reggae.
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This may be the most random post I’ve made on this site but I feel I must share the soundtrack of my trip to Malaysia. To be honest, the tracks listened to while sipping Tiger beers on the beaches of Kuantan and Port Dickson among others mainly consisted of two albums – Colbie Caillat’s Coco (which got an obscene amount of plays) and Bob Marley’s greatest hits )(which got an equally obscene amount). Colbie Caillat I have already posted about and I seriously recommend that you check her out for some really summery, easy-going music (now that the season is almost upon us). What was surprising is the success she’s had over in Asia (you would always hear one of her songs played quite frequently on the radio/MTV Asia) and the relative lack of success she’s had in the UK by comparison. I can’t quite put my finger on why this may be the case but I can only think of how saturated the market is here with sub-par singer songwriters that when someone comes out with a genuinely good album, it’s easy to get unnoticed and swept under the rug.

So anywho, I guess I better share at least one of the Bob Marley tracks that was played in frequent rotation. He’s a pretty easy recommendation to make if you want something to play in the background when it’s a glowing day on the beach. I’ve noticed that it just gets everyone in the mood to enjoy the atmosphere, relax, and have a good time with those around you. It makes for an almost cathartic experience. Tracks that were on constant repeat included: “Three Little Birds”, “One Love/People Get Ready”, “Buffalo Soldier”, “Could You Be Loved”, “Jamming”, “Waiting in Vein” …and of course, this. Enjoy.

Bob Marley & The Wailers – Is This Love
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[ From the Album “Legend” | Buy CD: | Download: ]

While walking around on my travels, I often heard the faint sound of steel pans playing here and there which got stuck in my head. It’s a situation which I’m sure many people have been in where you recognise a melody that, even at just a few notes long, you’re sure you’ve heard before but irritatingly you can’t put your finger on where. Well I somehow managed to have an epiphany which led me to the unlikely source of the soundtrack to the 1993 film “True Romance” which, I think you’d agree with regards to this particular track, plays quite a fitting tune for a summery vacation.

Hans Zimmer – You’re So Cool
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[ From the Album “True Romance OST” | Buy CD: |
Download: ]

Finally, I want to share a track that I only had the pleasure of discovering some six or seven years ago while on a previous excursion to Malaysia . It’s a really good example of how different audiences from across the globe get exposed to different tracks that, I can only assume, the record labels believe would do better in certain territories over others. Jennifer Paige is someone you may remember who had success with the hit single “Crush”. She quickly dropped off the radar here in UK, however she was still being promoted in other continents which led me to the discovery of this track “Stranded” – a brilliant cover from the artist Plumb. Despite being released so long ago, and despite it’s lack of success in comparison to “Crush”, I still find this a glorious pop song that I would have regretted not hearing due to the simple fact it wasn’t promoted in my region. It’s an interesting example of how much music we are conditioned to by record labels who decide what they think would perform better in different territories, and what we may be missing out on if we don’t have the opportunity to come across it by our own means.

Jennifer Paige – Stranded
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[ From the Album “Positively Somewhere” | Buy CD: | Download: ]