Pick of the Political Pops: Aimee Mann “I Was Thinking I Could Clean Up For Christmas”

Well, gosh darn it, it appears to be that time of year again. Here at Americana-UK Towers we are as divided about the festive season as a country pondering Brexit. There are those of us, The Editor for example, who go all squishy and fluffy and impossible to live with at the prospect of a mince pie, some new pairs of socks and the chance to bestow goodwill to all men (and women). Continue reading “Pick of the Political Pops: Aimee Mann “I Was Thinking I Could Clean Up For Christmas””

Americana UK writers pick their albums of 2018

Once upon a time we used to do a “Top 10” list of our favourite stuff from the last year, but we used to all fall out, on several occasions it came to blows and three ex-AUK staff are doing life sentences for killing other writers purely for their taste. So we moved to a one member one vote system but as it happens, 2 records were chosen by more than one writer this year. What are the chances? They sit at the top of the list below – so here they are, our essential 22 albums for 2018:

Continue reading “Americana UK writers pick their albums of 2018”

A Review of the Year : Tell me where it hurts, and I’ll tell you what to feel

It may have been another turbulent year with no sign of the punishment letting up, but it has also been another great year for music. And, in a sense, that’s what really matters. And if nothing else the real world has offered some amusement on the live scene as visiting bands from the USA make clear who did, and who didn’t, support the incumbent of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue. The latter by noting the madness in their country and typically saying something like “don’t blame me“, the former by withholding any comment on the subject at all, as if it’s just business as usual. Continue reading “A Review of the Year : Tell me where it hurts, and I’ll tell you what to feel”

Your last chance to vote in 2018’s Americana UK’s readers’ poll

This year’s readers poll has 2 days left to go – as per usual, we’d like to hear your thoughts on what bowled you over during the last 12 months (plus our tradition villain of the year despite the fact that the category is probably redundant until 2021.) There are still no clear winners in most categories so voting now you’ll have a real chance to affect the results (and you could win some nice CDs).  Head here to cast your vote (wisely of course, like one of the three wise men!) before midnight on Sunday. Have a good weekend dear readers.

Pick of the Political Pops: 2nd South Carolina String Band “Bonnie Blue Flag”

This week we didn’t think things in the political spectrum could get any more farcical. But they did. We like to think that this particular column is read with a healthy dose of scepticism and that regular readers appreciate the (occasionally) satirical nature of it. Things have now gone beyond satire though we feel. Even a scant analysis of the ‘European Problem’ would point out that we are in the mess we are because of divisions within the Blues. Continue reading “Pick of the Political Pops: 2nd South Carolina String Band “Bonnie Blue Flag””

Americana UK’s editor chooses his picks for 2018

It’s always weird writing about yourself in the third person, the ego of me, but then headlines without the accompanying cheery picture might leave people mystified.  Anyway, there’s my excuse. What a year it’s been for music, so many great tours and a real vibrancy to the genre – I’ll talk about that more next week when we’ll reveal our collaborative choices for 2018 (and yours too of course). In the meantime, here’s my top albums of the last 12 months. Continue reading “Americana UK’s editor chooses his picks for 2018”

Pick of the Political Pops: Crosby, Stills and Nash “Helplessly Hoping”

Last week, regular readers will remember, we were visited by our friend BOB (Bored of Brexit as he styles himself) much to our consternation and chagrin. This week he returned somehow managing to avoid the man-traps (or person-traps) and rabid dogs of Americana-UK Towers which usually serve as our security system. Presenting himself at the cast iron, quadruple locked doors of The Bunker he banged away for a full ten minutes until he attracted the attention of the least drunk of us. Sadly that particular member of staff (no longer extant) decided to let him in. The ensuing conversation wasn’t pretty but it was a full and frank exchange of ideas and followed this general pattern: Continue reading “Pick of the Political Pops: Crosby, Stills and Nash “Helplessly Hoping””

Pick of the Political Pops: Willie Nelson “The Bob Song”

This week we were visited in The Bunker here at Americana-UK Towers by our friend Bob. Bob likes to remind us that B O B stands for ‘bored of Brexit’, a fact which he chuckled about continuously whilst he raided our bar for strong liquor. Now we’re not sure if Bob is a ‘gammon’ or a ‘snowflake’ – we just consider him a bigoted twat – but whatever he is the most important political situation probably in our lifetimes is hardly something to be bored about. In fact we are so interested in it that we hardly sleep at night, hanging on every twist, turn and shenanigan of the Brexit process. It’s not like we are either desperate to leave or desperate to remain. We’re just increasingly desperate. We’re not sure what is going to happen and the politicians aren’t helping us in any regard since they don’t know either. No one does. What a horrible mess.

Pick of the Political Pops: Laura Veirs “Cannon Fodder”

We’re not big rioters down here at Americana-UK Towers. We prefer to settle our differences by honest, quiet and frequently drunken discussion. Things rarely get out of hand and when they do The Editor is on hand to restore order in his usual calm and collected way by cutting the throats of those with whom he disagrees. It works for us. What we don’t resort to is turning water cannon on people because, well, it’s undignified and makes a hell of a mess. Continue reading “Pick of the Political Pops: Laura Veirs “Cannon Fodder””

Van Life: The Wave Pictures

The Wave Pictures have crafted their own special place in the UK’s music scene with a number of eloquent, beautifully crafted and utterly charming albums over the years alongside live shows that can go from howling laughter to pin-drop startling beauty in the beat of a heart.  Fresh from the release of their latest album, ‘Look Inside Your Heart‘ out now on Moshi Moshi, A-UK catches up with the band’s lead man Dave Tattersall,  currently burning tread on the autobahns of Germany, to see how life on the road is treating them and inquire what music they turn to when in need of inspiration, motivation or just plain titillation.  Continue reading “Van Life: The Wave Pictures”