Fri, 7 March 2014
Adam Stafford Toad Session from Song, by Toad on Vimeo. Video – Vimeo – YouTube Photos – Flickr Session tracks - Soundcloud – zip download (right click – save as) Interview podcast – mp3 – iTunes – Mixcloud (playlist at bottom of page) Adam Stafford released his fantastic album Imaginary Walls Collapse on Song, by Toad Records early in 2013. You can buy a copy on vinyl here if you like, but it won't tell you quite as much about Adam as I am hoping this session might. Adam is a film-maker as well, and has a genuinely eclectic taste in music, of the sort that makes me feel really rather ashamed by my own tunnel vision. He made a rather fantastic mixtape for the excellent Gold Flake Paint a while back called Magnatory Baws Prolapse which (despite its rather rotten name) reminded me all too strongly of everything that is wrong with my own taste in music - as well as being brilliant to listen to, dammit! This session was recorded by myself, with photos by the ever-awesome Nic Rue, with the filming done by Gavin White and Ian Greenhill and the videos all edited by Gavin. Full interview podcast:
Session tracks: Session track videos Podcast playlist: 01. Adam Stafford - Imaginary Walls Collapse (Toad Session) (00.22) 02. Y'all is Fantasy Island - High Hopes, Lost Love & Ruined Lives (15.07) 03. Colin Stetson - Judges (19.16) 04. Adam Stafford - Cold Seas (Toad Session) (29.11) 05. Sweethearts of the Prison Rodeo - The Solitary Rabbit (39.27) 06. Siobhan Wilson - Te Petite Minette (42.43) 07. Adam Stafford - His Acres (Toad Session) (53.02) 08. PAWS - Violent Vicki Violet (1.08.20) 09. Toulemani Diabaté - Eylan Road (1.11.01) 10. Adam Stafford - Shot Down You Summer Wannabes (Toad Session) (1.28.32)
Fri, 28 February 2014
Epicast because this is indeed epic. A double-length podcast - well, almost - and all for the reason that I simply have to clear the decks a little. Next week I go away to the States for SXSW and after that I shall be driving Meursault on their first US tour.
With next week's podcast being the Adam Stafford Toad Session, the week after that being our traditional SXSW one in Peej's back yard, and fuck knows what I'll manage whilst on tour, this means that anything not played this week will be both woefully out of date and quite possibly (shamefully) forgotten by the time I get back. Besides, my inbox will build up so much after a month in the States that I'll be overwhelmed with new things by that point and barely able to process anything else.
So yes, an epic podcast, almost two hours long, but if you have the patience for both the length and my drunken rambling, then one which will reward you with some truly excellent new music. This really takes me back to the early days of the podcasts, back when I would get utterly obliterated and play songs for hours until I could barely speak. Awful for the listener, I imagine, but kind of nostalgic for me
01. Panda Kid - A Long Long Summer (00.26)
Fri, 21 February 2014
God we're shit at this. Even the most romantic thing Mrs. Toad and I can usually bring ourselves to do on Valentine's Day - i.e. get pished and do a ranty podcast together about how we hate Valentine's Day - didn't work out this year for, erm, somewhat predictable reasons: we got a bit too jolly before recording it and it was a bunch of rambling, tedious nonsense.
So a week too late you get me by myself instead, recording a podcast stone cold sober in the middle of the afternoon. Romantic, isn't it. Ah well, never mind, I never did much like Valentine's Day anyway.
Anyhow, Mrs. Toad is off in the States at the moment, being all important and financey, and in actual fact by the time she returns I won't have seen her for about ten days, which is loads. It'll be worse when I go to SXSW with Meursault though, because that will involve us being apart for three fucking weeks, which is the most we have ever managed since the time when I lived in London and she lived in Edinburgh. Sigh.
01. The Divine Comedy - Geronimo (00.07)
Fri, 7 February 2014
Video – Vimeo – YouTube Photos – Flickr Session tracks - Soundcloud – zip download (right click – save as) Interview podcast – mp3 – iTunes – Mixcloud (playlist at bottom of page) Todd Umhoefer from Old Earth came to Scotland on a sort of holiday/tour late last year and Song, by Toad collaborated with his UK label Mini50 Records to put on shows in Glasgow and Edinburgh, and we also took the chance to record a Toad Session as well. Old Earth were actually spotted by Mini50 because of a post on Song, by Toad so it seemed rather fitting to work together to make the tour and the session happen. This was another one of those sessions which ended with Mrs. Toad making an amazing meal, and with us all drinking an absolute shitload of wine and playing records late into the night. There was something of a skeleton crew this time around, with Rory Sutherland helping me out with recording and cameras, and extra video help by Steven Tonge. Rory also edited all the video for us this time, which is why it looks rather more stylish than usual! Full interview podcast:
Session tracks: Session track videos Podcast playlist: 01. Old Earth - Higher Th'n Houses (Toad Session) (00.21) 02. Mat Riviere - The Garden (10.51) 03. Hiva Oa - Badger (14.34) 04. Old Earth - The rest, who cares? (Toad Session) (22.50) 05. Land of Vandals - Wildfire (29.25) 06. Altos - Never Named (32.47) 07. Old Earth - Themes & Alarm (Toad Session) (43.19) 08. Williard Grant Conspiracy - Early Hour (51.31) 09. Now Wakes the Sea - Seven Apples (56.26) 10. Old Earth - Unhunted further, four each (Toad Session) (1.11.02)
Fri, 31 January 2014
Tomorrow morning we start recording the new Meursault album: The Organ Grinder's Monkey. The only problem is, we have no idea whatsoever what's going to be on this album, just yet, but we're going to have a go nevertheless.
The album is actually being fan-funded, so we thought it should probably also be fan-chosen, so if you buy a copy of the album from our Kickstarter page, you then get to vote for five songs, Meursault ones or covers, and we'll record the most popular ones for the album - hence the title.
Anyhow, picking an album involving so many potential covers is a nightmare. So many great ideas, so many awful-but-brilliant ideas, so many just plain awful ideas, and you just don't know where to stop! So this podcast is a combination of the most popular tunes, the most popular bands, and some brilliant covers by bands who have already done an amazing job of this kind of shit. As to the final album - hell, who knows, you've about as much idea of how it'll turn out as I do!
01. The Flaming Lips - I Just Can't Get You Out of My Head (00.22)
Fri, 17 January 2014
Welcome to our sneak preview of Song, by Toad Records' plans for 2014. For the most part this is the exact track listing in the exact order of the free sampler we'll be putting up for download soon, although there are a couple of little tweaks.
I've even snuck in a special wee preview of Bastard Mountain - a tune which won't be on the sampler - primarily because that spot will be taken by The Leg, but I've played quite enough from Shrunken Tina Turner in the last few months, so I thought I would give you an exclusive treat, seeing as you're one of the 4-500 people who download this thing religiously every week.
Actually, I suppose far fewer actually download it every single week - maybe you're one of the 8-900 people who download the podcasts 'when they think about it', which results in that regular listenership of about 500. Who knows how many 'kinda' fans you have to have to regularly get 500 listeners in the first week, but I bet it's a fuck of a lot more than 500. Anyway, however many of you there are, it's a wee treat for you. You're welcome!
01. Virgin of the Birds - Ilona, You Should Still Be My Vampire Attendant (00.22)
Fri, 10 January 2014
Yep I feel a bit like I'm emerging from hibernation at the moment. Something about the way Christmas and New Year fell this year completely obliterated two weeks, and this week has been spent mostly trying to slow the levels of alcohol intake from Oliver Reed levels down to about George Best ones.
I've also been trying to force my sleep patterns to return to something vaguely resembling normality as well. I have been an absolutely appalling weakling in the face of that 'oh just one more episode' syndrome you develop when you have access to entire series of TV shows at once, so I've been staying up until five and six in the morning watching one absolutely terrible TV show after another.
I can't even claim it was something decent like The Wire or Game of Thrones or Breaking Bad, it's all been absolutely dismally shallow and repetitive crime and supernatural series. Fucking dreadful. WHAT HAS HAPPENED TO MY BRAIN? Anyhow, you can see how I am having a little bit of trouble getting back into gear for the new year, can't you. Fucking hell, WAKE UP, BOY!
01. Clem Snide - Delight (00.22)
Mon, 30 December 2013
Yup, as you know, Song, by Toad Records is five years old so I thought a brief spin through the history of the label would be in order because, well, why the fuck not. There's quite a lot of stuff in the vaults here which has long since vanished into the mists of time, and it's interesting to look back at how we started, in two senses.
Firstly, the roster was very obviously unrecognisable, primarily because it didn't really exist yet. We had a couple of pals who were willing to let us try and help promote their self-recorded bits and bobs, and some folk we thought were talented and knew were unsigned, but had no idea what they would make of us suggesting we try putting out their music for them.
And secondly, there is the ambition. We started out expecting to do little more than assisting people with a self-release. We assumed we'd be working with scrappy little demos and bits of home-recorded EPs and things like that - just trying to get the bands a little bit of extra publicity which they didn't necessarily have the time to try and achieve for themselves.
It think it's safe to say that, looking back five years later, I absolutely never in a million years dreamed we'd end up where we are now. Nor did I have the slightest understanding of how much we'd have to achieve, just to only get this far! But Rome wasn't built in a day, as they say. Apparently it took ages.
01. Meursault - The Furnace (00.20)
Fri, 13 December 2013
Video – Vimeo – YouTube Photos – Flickr Session tracks - Soundcloud - zip download (right click – save as) Interview podcast – mp3 – iTunes – Mixcloud (playlist at bottom of page) Wait a second, haven't we already done a Sparrow and the Workshop Toad Session? Why yes we have, and it is here. But if you follow that link you may well understand why we've recorded another one. Basically, back then I didn't really have any idea how to record and mix things, I had no idea how to export video properly, and YouTube was in a 640x480 format, meaning that everything looks like it should have been embedded on a Geocities site, not a swish, modern music blog. So we sat down with Broken Records, Meursault and first Sparrow and the Workshop and did whole new Toad Sessions with them because, well because they live locally and we're all friends and fuck it, we can. So this is the second Sparrow and the Workshop Toad Session. The photos were by Nic Rue, as is becoming increasingly traditional, and her fella and fellow long-time Session veteran Rory helped record and also film, along with Ian Greenhill. Gavin White, who also filmed the session, was kind enough to edit it for us. His stuff is on Vimeo under the name of Full Fridge Video. podcast 01. Sparrow and the Workshop - The Gun (Toad Session) (00.07) 02. The Rosy Crucifixion - Don't Water Dead Flowers (15.06) 03. Thee Oh Sees - Nightcrawler (18.37) 04. Sparrow and the Workshop - Medal Round Your Neck (Toad Session) (23.13) 05. Lal Waterson - Midnight Feast (34.42) 06. Richard Dawson - Poor Old Horse (38.23) 07. Sparrow and the Workshop - Shock Shock (Toad Session) (54.45) 08. The Roches - Hammond Song (58.48) 09. Country Teasers - Golden Apples (1.04.18) 10. Sparrow and the Workshop - Flower Bombs (Toad Session) (1.14.55)
Fri, 6 December 2013
I was in Aberdeen this week, and I happened to leave town at about half three, on my way home, at which point it was pretty much fucking pitch black already. Because the Gulf Stream keeps the UK cool in the Summer and warm in the Winter you tend to forget just how very, very far North we really are.
Anyhow, between that and the cold which overtakes my office during the day because it feels indulgent to have the heating on I am definitely in my Winter mood at the moment. I like Winter, though. I like the dark and the cold and the whole 'nights drawing in' thing. I suggests time with the record player and lots of red wine, and maybe a fire as well. All good things.
So yes, I am uploading this and then going off to do just that. A new restaurant has opened just down the road from us and Mrs. Toad and I are going to toddle along and try it out tonight. After some gin and records, of course. Go us!
01. Absolutely Free - On the Beach (00.06)