Crate-Digging Prague: Antikvariát Aurora

As I mentioned before, second-hand book stores can provide a wealth of musical discoveries and Aurora at 53 Spálená Street is one of the richest. I have been visiting the store for about ten years back when the owner had a store near the main train station. Over the decade I have made some worthwhile, even… Read more »

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Listening Experience: Allo Darlin’ – We Come from the Same Place

I first heard the song ‘Tallulah’, the strongest moment from Allo Darlin’s second album Europe, on the radio and immediately had to hear more of them. I was beguiled by Elizabeth Morris’reminiscing about a drive under the hot Australian sun with the only relief provided by a tape of the Go-Between’s album Tallulah. The ukulele was gentle and… Read more »

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Piano, Bass, Drums…Details – The Necks, Palác Akropolis Prague, 14th Oct. 2014

Oceanic analogies seem the most obvious way to discuss the music of The Necks. Too obvious. Their music builds, surges, rushes, cascades. But these descriptions miss the point. The words  presuppose that there has to be something more to the music, to the sound. Music is meant to express something, right? And where expression is wanting, we reach for an… Read more »

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Three Minute Love Letter to Pop

Dear Pop, If I were talented, I would be able to craft a perfect song which would encapsulate my fondness for you in the very form you are. But my words have never come so succinct and sweet. Pop, you caught me off guard in my mid twenties. By that time I fancied myself as quite… Read more »

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Channelling One’s Inner Bogan

According to family legend, my first contact with Acca Dacca came when my father bought the single “Dirty Deeds Done Dirt Cheap“. I would apparently thrash my eighteen-month year old head about in time to the music while stomping around the living room. Much to the amusement of my relatives. I like this story because… Read more »

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Crate-Digging Prague: Antikvariát Vinohradská

Prague’s second-hand bookshops (antikvariáty in Czech) offer a novel hunting ground for the crate-digger who is not bothered with exchanging a little time for the prospect of finding something intriguing among the Karel Gott records. (Gott was a popular singer under communism and remains active today). Such finds are rare, but are all the more worth it for… Read more »

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Off-Note: Making a Mixtape

Ah, the mixtape. You have grown from a simple necessity – a means to compile favorite songs and share them with friends – to a cultural artifact and badge of the musical obsessive. You are the subject of studies, novels and a plot device in a film. Your status has grown while supplies of your actual… Read more »

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Leonard Cohen in Words

I have been a Leonard Cohen fan since a mother of one of my friends loaned me a copy of Various Positions back when I was fifteen. I had been looking for something outside rock, something with heart and intelligence. Mr Cohen’s poetic songs, as many of his fans know, delivered and continue to do so. Over… Read more »

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Alternative Music and the Fade-Out

On Monday 15th September Slate ran an article by William Weir on the slow demise of the fade-out in popular music. From the 1950s to 1980s, the fade-out was the ending de rigueur. Weir argues it provided drama and additional musical treats for the attentive listener but fell out of favour because of psychology and technology…. Read more »

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Prague’s Rock Connections

In the years after the fall of communism, and even on one occasion during the former regime’s final decade, rock music insinuated itself into Prague’s history. The city was never a cradle of style like New York or Manchester not a place where artists sought inspiration such as in Berlin, but among the famed spires, traces of… Read more »

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