Posts Tagged ‘Port O’Brien’

Daytrotter Reaches 2,000 Sessions - Free Mix.

The wonderful Daytrotter recently announced their 2,000th session and managed to get none other than Country music legend Glen Campbell in to record it, followed swiftly by a new session from the brilliant Delta Spirit.

For those that don’t know Daytrotter sessions are typically four songs in length, recorded live to quarter-inch tape in a matter of a couple hours, with no overdubs. They are then made available for download and streaming on the site and its various apps. Since beginning in February of 2006, Daytrotter has given away tens of millions of downloads and countless many more streams. In addition to studios in Rock Island and London, Daytrotter sessions are also occasionally taped in San Francisco, CA, Asheville, NC, Nashville, TN and Montreal.

Accessing all these sessions plus all the upcoming ones by all the bands you know and love costs a paltry $2 per month. For your ongoing listening pleasure we can’t think of anything anywhere that will give you better value than that. Below are just a very few highlights from some of the sessions we have loved – listen (they should fit neatly onto a CD), and if you haven’t done it yet, go and sign up here.

Download We Are Augustines – Ballad Of A Patient Man mp3 (from Daytrotter Session)

Download The Cave Singers – Cold Eye mp3 (from Daytrotter Session)

Download The Felice Brothers – Marlboro Man mp3 (from Daytrotter Session)

Download Phosphorescent  – Cocaine Lights mp3 (from Daytrotter Session)

Download Father John Misty – I’m Writing A Novel mp3 (from Daytrotter Session)

Download A.A. Bondy – Witness Blues mp3 (from Daytrotter Session)

Download Justin Townes Earle – Lone Pine Hill mp3 (from Daytrotter Session)

Download The Tallest Man On Earth – Shallow Grave mp3 (from Daytrotter Session)

Download Gabriel & The Hounds –  When We Die In South America mp3 (from Daytrotter Session)

Download Jessica Lea Mayfield – Our Hearts Are Wrong mp3 (from Daytrotter Session)

Download Liars – Scarecrows On A Killer Slant mp3 (from Daytrotter Session)

Download The Low Anthem – Ticket Taker mp3 (from Daytrotter Session)

Download Bill Callahan – Eid Ma Clack Shaw mp3 (from Daytrotter Session)

Download Middle Brother – Portland mp3 (from Daytrotter Session)

Download Arborea – Black Is The Colour mp3 (from Daytrotter Session)

Download Heartless Bastards – Got To Have Rock ‘n’ Roll mp3 (from Daytrotter Session)

Download Port O’Brien – A Bird Flies By mp3 (from Daytrotter Session)

Download The Dutchess & The Duke – Scorpio mp3 (from Daytrotter Session)

Download KaiserCartel – Carroll Street Station mp3 (from Daytrotter Session)

Download Ray Wylie Hubbard – Drunken Poet’s Dream mp3 (from Daytrotter Session)

Download Sandman The Rappin’ Cowboy – White Line Highway mp3 (from Daytrotter Session)

Mrs Mackerel's TFI Friday (25th November). Dark and light; light and dark. A week of two halves.

A source of great light: daughter sprat’s birthday. A girl who finds great joy in many things, who notices the little things that matter.

I’m probably a lot better at hiding the dark than I used to be; comes with a bit of practise in recent years, sadly. But I’m sorry to say I can’t be upbeat this week. I’ve tried and tried but I just can’t do it. My heart feel like it’s made of lead. Smiling on the outside, crying on the inside.

My nephew Harry is 11 years old. On Wednesday his dad was found dead. Harry’s life to date has been complicated, messy and, at times, profoundly disturbing. I wish I could take his pain away.

You can’t buy the things that matter most, and isn’t that the point?

Mrs Mackerel

For Esmé, her favourite song of the moment, and for Harry, just because: the absolutely sublime cover of Halo by Port O’Brien.

Download Port O’Brien – Halo mp3 (Beyonce Cover)

Mrs Mackerel's TFI Saturday So, five go camping. Well, not quite yet; we do need a tent first – or at least one that fits us all. The last time I went camping was with MM’s predecessor. Two nights in the Black Mountains of Wales in torrential rain. We awoke in water. That cured any affection I had towards life under canvas, and to him.

Still, life moves on. I’m quite looking forward to a different sort of camping with the sprats. All previous excursions were (quite rightly) centred around music, namely festivals. Speaking of which, I was returning from a day trip to London, and was severely delayed by the volume of traffic leaving Wembley. Leaving Wembley having seen a band that rhymes with Baked Shat.

Considering that on my outward journey I’d been flanked on all sides by overweight, over-tanned, under-dressed, hyper-ventilating women, they then conspired to prevent me getting home. Sometimes it’s hard to swim against the tide; my fins are exhausted.

Best go camping and get away from them all.

Mrs Mackerel

As an antidote to musical blandness, there’s nothing like taking to the open air with a little of the good stuff.

We all could use a little mercy now. I know we don’t deserve it, but we need it any how. We hang in the balance, hanging dangled between hell and hallowed ground. And every single one of us could use some mercy now.”

Well let’s try and post this by the very talented Mary Gauthier.

And also, because we like to be topical on a Friday (well, Saturday), let’s go Port O’Brien with Oslo Campfire.

Download Mary Gauthier – Mercy Now mp3 (from Mercy Now)

Download Port O’Brien – Oslo Campfire mp3 (Hear Ya Session)

One of the advantages of having a blog like this is being able to make up the rules as you go along, and today that means giving the limelight to our youngest Joe, who reaches the ripe old age of seven today. Now, we are all guilty of bias and of nepotism at times (and this is one of them), but I think you’d be hard pressed to find another seven year old with music tastes as good as his. From age five he chose to go to sleep to the soothing strains of Mclusky loudly singing along, “My dad’s better than your dad” and playing air guitar, and we know with each mix CD we put in the car that he will soon be making selections from the back, “can we have number three then number seven” before creating his own mix CDs for his room.

He has a brilliant ear for a riff, a rhythm and a melody, and picks out lyrics with the best of them. Best of all his choices are all his own – independently reached and determinedly defended.

And for those that are interested, his current ‘hot picks’ are the outstanding Honda Civic from the new Felice Brothers album and the gentle acoustics of Wire from Alessi’s Ark’s Time Travel album.

So, here we have twelve personally hand picked tracks from the coolest seven year old we know. From rockabilly twang to visceral punk to woozy pop and protest folk, he loves it all. And we love him. Way to go Joe!

Download The Magnetic Fields – Drive On Driver mp3 (from Distortion)

Download The Range Rats – Colt 44 mp3

Download Port O’Brien – My Brain Is Hanging Upside Down (Bonzo Goes To Bitburg) mp3 (Ramones cover)

Download Joe Pug – Hymn 35 mp3 (from Nation of Heat EP)

Download The Sheepdogs – I Don’t Know mp3 (from Learn & Burn)

Download Mumford & Sons – Unfinished Business mp3 (White Lies cover)

Download Grass House – A Cockroach mp3 (from Plough More Sky EP)

Download Jones Street Station – The Understanding mp3

Download Mclusky – To Hell With Good Intentions mp3 (from Mclusky Do Dallas)

Download Pancake Breakfast – The Ballad Of Maynard Noe mp3 (from Pancake Breakfast)

Download Katherine Hepburn’s Voice – Out Like This mp3 (from Unlimited Nights & Weekends EP)

Download The Felice Brothers – Run Chicken Run mp3 (from Yonder Is The Clock)

Here at MM we share, chat, argue, bury and praise music on a pretty regular basis…like daily. So throughout the year, the Mackerel crew (Mrs Mackerel, Barry-Sean, Christy-Popper, Dr Roddy, Polly Pocket, Starbar, MM and others) keep their own ever-changing top tens ready for publication at the climax of the festive season.

So last, but very much not least, is the lovely (though flu-stricken) Mrs Mackerel and her choices for 2010.

We all sweat a little over our top tens and I don’t know why really. This is just what I think, you will undoubtedly think a little different. But I’ve always found my fellow top ten contributors a great source of new sounds that maybe I wouldn’t have otherwise chosen myself. And if you find one song you like that you didn’t know before, then job done really. So to all the musicians that kindly let us post their wares, a heartfelt thank you – here’s to the next 12 months.

10. Kurran & The Wolfnotes – Your Four Limbs (Download here)

Sunny upbeat music with a beautiful harmonies, juxtaposed with a rather a dark message. A masochistic love of complete surrender; one-sided blind devotion and infatuation. It doesn’t end well.

9. Adam Green – What Makes Him Act So Bad  (Download here)

Appeals to the latent rock chick in me: she may lie sleeping, but she’s still in there. The laconic, growling delivery of the lyrics makes this tune twist and dip. Late night smoky bar sort of song, bit of a hip swayer over a cocktail or two. “I know you’re a wonderful dancer” – why thank you, Adam, I expect I’m the one with the answers too.

8. Lykke Li – Get Some  (Download here)

A proper bit of girl power in the form of a punchy, irrepressible foot-stomping beat. It’s not one to get your daughters to sing along to, but I love the rhythmic no-messing attitude of this song. It’s not often you hear such a drum/percussion-dominated track but this only means it beds into your mental song library very easily. And unlike with say, Two Little Boys (sorry Rolf), you don’t end up irritating yourself.

7. Two Wounded Birds – Night Patrol  (Download here)

A sleazy, sultry mix which tips a nod to Chris Isaacs and maybe even the Raveonettes too; the drums sound like a heartbeat, the guitars borrow a little from Hank Marvin. This song belongs to a different era, where women had beehives and men wore hats and chain-smoked. Just fabulous.

6.  Tallest Man On Earth – King Of Spain  (Download here)

Off we gallop at a rollicking pace before yep, here he comes, the Tallest Man on Earth, this time masquerading as the King of Spain. He has a unique and idiosyncratic voice that truly sets him apart from many of his contemporaries, and my great musical regret of 2009 is that MM and I were unable to make his London gig in last autumn.

5. The National – Bloodbuzz Ohio

Oh I do like a man with a voice as deep as the night. Matt Berninger’s unmistakeable baritone cuts through this lament, with the drums bringing up the rear. Hypnotic offering from a band that have been waiting in the wings for some much deserved recognition from the wider world.

4. Haunted Windchimes – Sea Bride  (Visit their website here. We can’t post the song or find a stream or a video…but you can listen via spotify here)

I loathe wind-chimes. Pointless instruments of aural torture. But once I got past the name, well this is a finger-pickin’ good tune. One of my outstanding films of 2010 was Winter’s Bone and there’s a scene in it where a hill-billy Nan and her mates are sat round in what looks like someone’s front room/bar. What they make is real music for the soul. I could imagine the Haunted Windchimes pulling up a chair and being right at home – and I mean this musically, not in an in-bred, gun-toting sort of way (she adds hastily).

3. Stornoway – I Saw You Blink

To me this is our MM summer of 2010 song: it’s sunshine and dreaminess and love. There’s self doubt and possibly even a Shelley-esque metaphor used (eyes being the window of the soul and all that). All sung to a back-drop of retro, up-tempo, carefully layered music. He’s in love, distracted, missed his train, and constantly wondering what she’s thinking. Dammit, Lucy, he needs to know – are you one he’s been waiting for so, so long? I’m rather glad I’m not 20-something any more …

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2. Laura Marling – What He Wrote

What she writes, what she sings, what she plays is incomparable to any of her peers. But age sometimes belies wisdom. I struggled to choose from the riches of her second album, but this wins over Goodbye England by a smidge, simply because I prefer the latter in its unaccompanied arrangement. Here we have a piece of Greek mythology entwined with some war time letters; cause and effect; love and loss. “I am broken too and spoken for, do not tempt me.” A talent of rare and precious mettle.

1.Avalanche City – Ends In The Ocean  (Download here)

This snuck up when I wasn’t looking: the more I listened, the more I liked it. Kiwi Dave Baxter is Avalanche City; he taught himself to sing, plays all the instruments (apart from the drums) on this track, and recorded his debut album, solo, armed with a week’s supply of veggie curry. I like that in a person. And the song? It’s about losing yourself, and finding yourself again. It’s uplifting and positive and life-affirming – and it has a goodness that radiates through my very skin. “But now all that I see is life breaking free, so long captivity for me.” Not a bad way to end the year.

This year’s honourable mention goes to…

Jason Ward – Bless You  (Download here)

Bless you, Jason Ward. And bless you, MM. It’s quite a feat to make someone laugh when they’re in that much pain. Lies, deceit and fraud just ain’t enough for some people – let’s chuck in assault and battery too. Bless You is the anthem for the lesser common psycho. Delusional and toxic, they often hunt in pairs. Napoleon and Squealer. The Liver Turds. All should be sealed in a room and made to listen to Alexandra Burke on a loop. All together now, “How horrible are you …”

Bubbling Under:

5. Isobel Campbell & Willie Mason – Cool Water

4. Gorillaz – Melancholy Hill

3. Pancake BreakfastBallad of Maynard Noe

2. Mumford & SonsUnfinished Business

1. Port O’BrienMy Brain is Hanging Upside Down (Bonzo Goes To Bitburg)

And the Mrs Mackerel “Missed the Boat” or Songs I love that are not 2010

She Keeps Bees & Sharon Van EttenCuddle Alone

Just about the saddest song ever written. There’s nothing else to say really. Haunting.

The Dutchess & The DukeScorpio

Well, often timing is everything; I became aware of D&TD about ten days after they split up. Was it something I said? Scorpio is a particular favourite, a painfully observed lament about a dying relationship.

Following most excellent Top Ten submissions from Starbar, Polly Pocket, Dr Roddy, Barry-Sean and Mr Popper come MM’s top ten covers of 2010.

Now, we’ve said on many occasions that we’re not great lovers of covers. However, some of the cover versions we heard in 2010 may well have done enough to change our minds permanently.

So without further ado…

10 Holly Miranda – Nobody Sees Me Like You Do mp3 (Yoko Ono cover)

9 First Aid Kit – When I Grow Up mp3 (Fever Ray cover) Link removed by DMCA – no reason given…

8 Emily Reo – On The Beach mp3 (Neil Young cover)

7 Fever Ray – Mercy Street mp3 (Peter Gabriel cover)

6 Dead Luke – Ghost Rider mp3 (Suicide cover)

5 Mumford & Sons – Unfinished Business mp3 (White Lies cover)

4 Morning Benders – Outlaw Blues mp3 (Bob Dylan cover)

3 Wooden Shjips – Drunk Girls mp3 (LCD Soundsystem cover)

2 Japandroids – Racer X mp3 (Big Black cover)

1 Port O’Brien – My Brain Is Hanging Upside Down(Bonzo Goes To Bitburg) mp3 (Ramones cover)

And an honourable mention for this 2009 cover that we only first heard this year.

Download Phosphorescent – Big Red Sun Blues mp3 (Lucinda Williams cover)

And finally, we don’t post remixes because by and large we can’t be bothered with them. This was one exception to prove our rule. The Mystery Jets given the classic spacerock treatment by The Wooden Shjips.

Download The Mystery Jets – Dreaming Of Another World (Wooden Shjips remix) mp3

Well, Mrs Mackerel unbound! Shaking free from the rather genteel tethers of a typical Friday night in downtown Charlbury, we are heading towards the Big Smoke for a gig where I reckon MM and I could be the oldest fish there. And hurray, we have seats! I’m far too old to stand up for too long, even if it is Mumford & Sons.

Poor little Joe was a bit down in the mouth about his exclusion from the trip. As he is still only six, there should be plenty of time for gigging yet. (Continuing his trend for cover versions, the Mumford cover of Unfinished Business has now eclipsed the Bonzo Goes to Bitsburg phase with Port O’Brien, hence the acute misery).

And for me, the Mumford Boys symbolise moving on: energetic, heart-felt, honest music discovered earlier this year when life needed a more positive soundtrack.

So down with the kids we go; country mouse to town mouse; bright lights, big city. Can’t wait.

Mrs Mackerel

Here’s something to rouse you on a Friday night, a foot-stomping offering from Broken Records.

Download Broken Records – A Good Reason mp3 (from Until the Earth Begins To Part)

Download Mumford & Sons – Unfinished Business mp3 (White Lies Cover)

Download Port O’Brien – My Brain Is Hanging Upside Down (Bonzo Goes To Bitburg) mp3 (Ramones Cover, from the Peace Project)

In my usual working guise as a copywriter, this week’s been a bit of a punch in the face. It was with a great deal of wry irony that MM and I watched the first episode of the new season of Mad Men this week: why can’t I be more like Don?! Tell them to leave!

This week, I downloaded the Ramones’ original of My Brain Is Hanging Upside Down (Bonzo Goes To Bitburg) – and the lyrics – for the two younger sprats. Joe, in particular, is obsessed with the very fine cover of this song by Port O’Brien (a top ten contender for 2010 methinks) and we must listen to it about five or six times a day.

Doubt I’ll be hearing anything that good tonight, as I head off to a ball in me best bib and tucker. If I lose my slipper, MM won’t be there to pick it up as he’s hitting the End of the Road Festival with Barry-Sean. Look out Dorset.

So what to choose? Oh it was really quite easy. I rifled through our old CDs – his and hers. MM being the fish that he is, quickly integrated our collections a long, long time ago – alphabetically of course – which was lucky because it made it very easy to find.

“Hey, can you play the guitar?”

Mrs M

Download one of my old dance floor favourites Nasties by Sunshot. Best served with strobe. No explanation required.

Download Sunshot – Nasties mp3 (from Caughtintheactofenjoyingourselves)

Download Port O’Brien – My Brain Is Hanging Upside Down (Bonzo Goes To Bitburg) mp3 (from PEACE project)

Here is our regular monthly round up of 25 of the best tracks posted on Mad Mackerel in the past month, and three new gems too. That’s a more than decent mixtape sorted even if we were crap in the World Cup!

The FuturebirdsBattle For Rome mp3

Glorious, up-tempo alt-country gem that recalls Neil Young at his finest

Puro InstinctCalifornia Shakedown mp3

Dreamily seductive slice of icy pop

Burnt OnesBury Me In Smoke mp3

Sleazy, dirty, hook-laden surf rock and heavy doses of 7os glam

Mississippi ManMountain mp3

Superb blend of Americana and country-folk

The Vitamin Sees Illumanati Mind Control mp3

Mesmerising and hypnotic, with repetitive guitar riff and laconic vocals. Our discovery of the month!

Black Mountain – Old Fangs mp3

Scorched, driving, desert blues

HollowbellyLong Road mp3

Raw, stomping, hellfire and brimstone blues

Sharon Van EttenI Couldn’t Save You mp3

Languid, lonely and desolate. As stark and as stunning a heartbreaker as you could imagine

Ferocious FewKathleen mp3

Joyous raiding of the rock’n’roll cupboard to produce a two-minute classic

Elf PowerStranger In The Window mp3

Gentle, pensive, country-tinged, psych-pop. Gorgeous

Mathew Sawyer & The Ghosts – Mynah Birds Call mp3

Fragile, Syd Barrett influenced unorthodox folk whimsy

All Saints DayYou Can’t Be Alone mp3

Pop overdosing on distortion and reverb

Lail AradEveryone Is Moving To Berlin mp3

Wonderful blend of sharp-tongued pop and lovely folk overtones

The WhigsDying mp3

Visceral, slow burn of a track, builds into crescendo of guitars, drums and feedback

Tame ImpalaSolitude Is Bliss mp3

Bold, fuzzed up blues standout from recent album Innerspeaker

Karen ElsonThe Ghost Who Walks mp3

Gothic-tinged, country murder ballad

TennisMarathon mp3

Sweet and catchy pop gem

Tweak BirdA Sun Ahh Ahh mp3

Brilliant mix of full-on old-school metal riffing and psychedelic overtones

The MinksFuneral Song mp3

Vintage Cure bassline, icy synths and shadowy, sombre lyrics

The Black LipsBefore You Judge Me mp3

Typically swaggering boozy cut of garage rock

We Are Country MiceFestival mp3

Garage goodness, awash with reverb, duelling guitars and a tinge of psychedelia

The Local NativesCareful mp3

Chiming cover of Television album track

SalemKing Night mp3

Ghostly leanings and haunting, desolate beats

CrocodilesSleep Forever mp3

Full on indie rocker in the spirit of the Bunnymen

Emily ReoWitch Mtn Pt. 2 mp3

Dreamily seductive and captivating fuzzy Beach House style pop

And  three new ones for you to finish off:

The Vitamin SeesEvil Eye mp3

More tripped out, pulsing krautrock from our new band discovery of the month

Port O’BrienMy Brain Is Hanging Upside Down (Bonzo Goes To Bitburg) mp3

From the wonderful Buffetlibre/Amnesty Peace project (180 tracks for $5 minimum) comes this brilliant Ramones cover by MM faves Port O’Brien. Buy this compilation here now!

Wild NothingYour Rabbit Feet mp3

Latest chilled (and chilly) dream pop from new indie-wunderkind