Wednesday, December 1st, 2004
She stared out as vocalist for Manchester acid housers One Dove, then after the band and scene imploded she disappeared from the scene for several years. She made a somewhat surprising return in 1999 with Afterglow, a wonderfully eclectic record blending electronica, torch songs and pop, simultaneously warm and chilly, and anchored by Allison’s wonderful voice. It was also notable a guest appearance on one track by My Bloody Valentine’s Kevin Shields, who was just beginning to emerge from the chinchilla obsession that kept him a recluse through the latter part of the ’90s.
2002’s We Are Science took a darker turn, with more electronic and programmed sounds and a colder, detached vocal persona on Allison’s part. Think Factory Records – she certainly was. It’s grown on me since, but I still reach for Afterglow when I’m in the mood for her stuff. However, if she’s correct in describing her forthcoming third record as sounding like “Low or Mazzy Star“, I may have a new favourite.
In between working on her own records, she also lends her voice to records and tours by the likes of Death In Vegas and Massive Attack. I sort of wish that I’d gone to see her open – in 2002, I think – for Saint Etienne. Ah well, next time, perhaps.
MP3.com has some sample clips for your perusal, if you’re interested.
Sticking with news out of Scotland, Idlewild have finally revealed details of their fourth album, Warnings/Promises, which will be in stores March 8. Produced once again by Dave Eringa, I believe this will be the first time that one of their records gets a North American release concurrent with the UK/Europe. The first single, “Love Steals Us From Loneliness”, will be released February 21 in the UK, and both British and North American tours will follow in March and April. NME has full details.
Idlewild frontman Roddy Woomble was so excited about finishing the record, he went straight away and wrote about it in his journal. In addition to reminiscing over the year that was, he outlines the rough plans for the band in ’05 and recaps some of his favourite records of 2004. Amongst his picks, Wilco’s A Ghost Is Born, Bjork’s Medulla and Britney Spears’ My Prerogative. Roddy, Roddy, Roddy. Don’t you know that compilations aren’t eligible for year-end lists? Tut tut.
Okay, I made that last bit up. Compilations are fair game.
Feist gets her dancing shoes on in the new video for “One Evening”. Follow the link and click through to ‘videos’. And if you click on the ‘Live pics from the Canadian tour’ link on the homepage, you’ll, uh, end up right back here. Hopefully I will have some more tomorrow night after the Phoenix show.
Exclaim! has posted their year-end lists – pop album of the year? Arcade Fire’s Funeral, a pick I expect to see repeated ad nauseum over the next month or so. For my part, I will begin assembling my year-end features (yes, plural) shortly, expect something mid-December. I will probably spread it out over a number of days since December is generally news-light and I need something to write about…
Comic artist legend Jim Lee has a set of videos linked off his blog which show him creating a sketch of The Authority‘s Jenny Sparks. It’s mesmerizing to watch. And another comic creator who’s been blogging is Brian K Vaughan, writer of Ex Machina and Y – The Last Man, amongst others.
Left-field question… If I want to find some sort of apparatus that will let me use my bicycle as a stationary bike, that is, some sort of jig or blocks that gets my tires off the ground indoors, what am I looking for and where can I get it?
np – Six By Seven / The Things We Make