These were a few of my favourite tracks.
The Smile: Thin Thing (Live at Montreaux Jazz Festival)
Radiohead is one of my all-time favourite bands, but for some reason The Smile’s A Light for Attracting Attention never quite grabbed me. After I saw them live (Seattle, December), I wondered if a reason might have been that, while Radiohead works (worked?) out songs live, often over the course of many years, A Light was a “pandemic album.” The track “Skrting on the Surface” was a candidate for this list, being perhaps the closest thing to a Radiohead track we’re ever again likely to get; but in performance everything came alive and “Thin Thing” was one of the highlights. The interplay of Yorke’s bass and Greenwood’s guitar at 3:12 is just so great.
“And then, she’ll steal the photos / From your phone.”
Beth Orton: Weather Alive
Long ago, I had a copy of Orton’s Trailer Park; but I lost track of her over the years. The Pitchfork review of her new album prompted me to have another listen, and the album one of my favourites of the year; the title track is a standout. She and her band were great live in Vancouver in November.
“Almost makes me wanna cry / The weather’s so beautiful outside.”
King Hannah: It’s Me And You, Kid
How many years has it been now that most of the best rock tracks are by women? Well, in this case a female vocalist. Anyway, a simple but grand pleasure.