Okkervil River: Our Life Is Not A Movie Or Maybe (2007)
Another band that I’ve discovered through the pages of Word and Uncut, Okkervil River are sometimes labelled indie-folk, sometimes Americana. Being named after a short story by a Russian author hints at their liking for the lyrical side, which can make their songs hard to sing along with, but fun to unravel. Great performers too.
Os Mutantes: A Minha Menina (1968)
Formed in 1966 in São Paulo, Os Mutantes managed to thrive despite the threats of Brazil’s military government. Their first albums were in the progressive Tropicália style, but also had influences from folk – including a cover of Françoise Hardy’s “Le premier bonheur du jour”. “A Minha Menina” is their signature, and is a good example of how their debut album made #12 on Mojo magazine’s list of “50 Most Out-There Albums of All Time”
Oasis: The Masterplan – live (1995)
So was relegating a tune that Noel Gallagher now describes as “one of the best songs I’ve ever written” to being a b-side of the Wonderwall single all part of Noel’s masterplan? I suspect not. But with Oasis having sold 70 million records, the plan hasn’t gone too badly.
Beth Orton: Feel To Believe (1999)
I first came across Beth’s music in 1998 during my year in Dublin, and I thought I’d be seeing her support David Gray in 2003. When the curtain came up, it was Beth Hart instead. Guess those listening skills still aren’t what they could be. I finally saw her play earlier this year in a solo show in Auckland’s Holy Trinity Cathedral. Solo gigs seem hard work, but Beth managed it. She signed everything I could find to throw at her afterwards, and she was even quite chatty. Beth’s music covers everything from folk to electronica, often on the same CD. Feel To Believe is acoustic Beth, from the fantastic CD Central Reservation.
clang….name dropping alert. And its a baggy shirt, honest.