Feed Them To The Dogs Again

There’s been talk of a Twilight Sad acoustic EP for some time now. Assorted videos have popped up (on Drowned In Sound and elsewhere), and originally “The Wrong Car” EP was to feature a bunch of acoustic songs, but didn’t. Now, thankfully, the band have released a free EP, cunningly entitled “Acoustic EP”, which is yours for nothing. Nada. Zilch. Nichts. Nowt. Ok, your email address. Just pop over to their relaunched blog here and sign up. Do it! Do it!

For the Acoustic EP is, frankly, superb. You’d think that their songs are by and large exercises in being loud and quite grumpy and that the underlying songs possibly aren’t up to much, but you’d be wrong. Some songs – “I Became A Prostitute” and “Interrupted”, for example – are better done this way than with the waves of noise. Stripping them right down shows exactly how great these songs are. And if you’ve not heard their stuff before either way, just go and sign up and get a marvellous free gift.

I love it when bands do this. Stars, they are, stars.

MP3: That Birthday Present (Acoustic) by The Twilight Sad

Buy “Forget The Night Ahead” (CD/MP3)

Oh I Do Like To Be Beside The Seaside

Yes, I’ve been away. Very nice it was too. The English seaside, even in the sunshine, can be bracingly cold, but mucking about on a sheltered beach in bright sunshine in late April is a glorious thing and not to be sniffed at. Come on, global warming, do your worst!

Song of the trip was, bizarrely, Robert Wyatt’s “Shipbuilding”. I started singing this to my kid, for some reason, during the trip, then on the way home we put on Radio 4, and what came on within a couple of minutes? Yep, “Shipbuilding”. Isn’t that odd?

Now I have written about this song before, as part of the whole Pitchfork Thang, but over time this track has become a firm favourite round here, dusted off when I want to listen to something that’s simple yet complex, beautiful yet troubling, and something to sing along to so I can annoy the neighbourhood cats and dogs.

Has there ever been a song written that so perfectly encapsulates the horrendous deal made by communities that are making weapons? That to buy your wife shoes and a winter coat, and your son’s birthday present, you have to build a ship that will be used to kill people? That speaking out against it may well end up with you getting beaten up, or “filled in”, as the song puts it? That there is more to life – “Diving for pearls” – than just trudging through a daily existence of dreary work.

A work of genius, that’s what it is.

MP3: Shipbuilding by Robert Wyatt

Buy “Greatest Misses” Here (CD/MP3)