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Charles Martel’s Top 1000: Epilogue

posted December 3, 2014, 12:30 am by CharlesMartel | Filed Under Recommendations from the Writer's Mind, Video | comment Leave a Comment

I mentioned at the very start of this series that the top 1000 list is continuously changing. On average I listen to about 300 new albums a year and buy about 60. Hardly surprising then that there are tracks which I had not heard when I began this list, but have heard now, and feel would warrant inclusion on the list if it were drawn up today.

So, here are five tracks which I have (re-)”discovered” since I first posted and which would probably find their way into this list should I ever do it again.

In no particular order –

Link Wray & His Wray Men – “Rumble” (7” Single)

One of the few instrumentals ever to get banned from the radio – apparently it glorified juvenile delinquency. This was a huge influence on bands such as the Kinks and the Who and has one of the earliest examples of power chords. To get that unique sound, Wray poked holes in his amplifier when the track was recorded.

The Dentists – “I Had an Excellent Dream” (Some People Are on the Pitch They Think It’s All over It Is Now)

Long forgotten jangle pop classic from the Dentists. Sounding like a cross between sixties American psychedelia and eighties British jangle pop, it has a unique sound. Thankfully, the long-deleted album has been picked up and re-released on vinyl recently.

Thomas Tallis – “Spem in Alium” (Spem in Alium)

Superb piece of choral music from Tudor England. This motet was written for eight, five-voiced choirs which join, leave and combine their multiple voices throughout the whole piece, making this probably the greatest work of early English choral music. Even having a snippet of it included in “50 Shades of Grey” can’t spoil it.

The Action – “Brain” (Rolled Gold)

The Action started out as a mod band and recorded a demo album, produced by Brian Epstein of Beatles fame, which was distinctly psychedelic – though as a demo it lacked the production flourishes and twirls. The album of demos was then forgotten and finally rediscovered and released 30 years later. The sound with its bare production is something quite special and “Brain” is the finest track off it.

Blue Aeroplanes – “Jacket Hangs” (Swagger)

Blue Aeroplanes take some getting used. Their line-up featured a Polish “dancer” and Gerard Langley’s vocals were more spoken than sung. But the opening lines to this track carry with it that hint of menace –

“Pick a card!
Any card.


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