Listening and Viewing…

Finally got hold of my copy of the As One Tsunami charity CD, which I’m on. It was posted a month ago, and for some weird reason the postal service decided that a box the size of a CD was too big for my letter box, which is clearly bollocks. So I finally collected it from the sorting office, and had a listen. There’s some great stuff on it, not least of all a Dean Brown track with Marcus Miller on fretless – very nice indeed. Also featured are some other amazing bassists – Laurence Cottle, Mo Foster, Jimmy Haslip etc. Top players.

Last night, TSP, Kathryn (current house-guest visiting from the states) and I watched Team America – it’s the South Park guys doing a satire on the War on Terrorism using Thunderbirds style puppets. I have to admit to being a big Trey Parker fan – I think the South Park stuff, when he’s doing satire, is brilliant. He does descend into mindless smut at times, but there’s usually a point to it. And when there isn’t, for me it still almost always stays on the right side of the ‘funny vs overly grubby’ scales.

And on that note, I also got a CD through yesterday from Toupe, a two basses + drums band from Southampton – I’d really enjoyed their last album, Alopecia, but when the first track I heard from the new album was called ‘f***ing’, my suspicions about the content of the new album were raised… As it is, bits of it are fab. Some fine satire on the music industry, and some other general frivolous nonsense. But, like their musical forebear, Frank Zappa, much of the album slips into crass comedy-porn. I’m sure there’s a point to it somewhere, it was just lost on me. If you’re into that kind of thing, definitely check them out. If you’re not, steer clear. I like the Toupe guys, and they are capable of making me laugh a lot with some of the stuff they do, but about a third of the album really misses the mark for me. Musically it’s somewhere in the Primus/SadHappy/Zappa territory – lots of funky ‘n’ furious slap lines, and some great distorted bass sounds, with that show-tune element that all three of the above mentioned bands have corrupted to similar effect in the past.

Soundtrack – Various Artists, ‘As One’; Prefab Sprout, ‘From Langley Park To Memphis’.

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