Showered with sublime sentiment throughout the month known for patches of precipitation, we look back on our four “Track of The Week” selections for April, our choices spanning the nineties through the noughties and engendering genres from electronic dance to indie pop & country crossover, but in rounding up the month of music just gone, who & what made their musical mark on our mindset and why?
While we must admit being a tad remiss throughout April in terms of meeting our planned promise to produce our first periodic newsletter, our mindset & mood distracted my personal health problems, one part of the bargain that we have held up is selecting our “Track of the Week” choices for each of the four, our inspiration ranging from radio to pre-record productions with a dose of déjà vu from March for good measure, genres engendered including dance, electronic, pop and even country cross over, making for a decidedly diverse delve as April developed. So, following on from our last feature, “Awash With Admiration”, we sum up our April selections, sharing download options & video links along with our why’s & wherefores’ concise commentary on each, then concluding by hinting towards what’s in store for May.
So up first is a track that saw us swing into that country crossover genre we mentioned, the inspiration for this choice coming in the form of BBC Radio London’s popular presenter Jo Good, who had been showcasing Norah Jones’s single “Come Away With Me” for much of March, not least during her early Saturday morning breakfast, the heavenly hour of 6 am to 7am when our musical inspiration is at its height, meaning we had earmarked this superbly soothing song as a selection sometime before it actually made the grade. Originally released back in 2002, it is fair to say that this terrific track represents much than country crossover, as it transcends jazz, blues, acoustic pop & folk in fantastic form from start to finish and it cannot be attributed to winning Norah her 2003 Grammy award for song of the year, “Come Away With Me” received acknowledged universal acclaim, Rolling Stone magazine placing it at number fifty four in its top 100 list of the decade, not bad and just one of many more reasons why we picked it out.
To our second selection and one that derives from that dose of March déjà vu, as, again courtesy of Jo Good, our attention was drawn to indie pop group Keane, their 2006 hit “Atlantic” heftily hinting towards the fifth single which from the same album as the first, yet until now, one we had never heard, “A Bad Dream” however, sweeping us off our feet and also proving very poignant as our deep dreaming was at a horrid height during this week in April. Taken from their sweepingly successful second studio album, “Under The Iron Sea”, this single didn’t prove anywhere near as huge a hit, its highest chart ranking 14 and in Russia at that, although this belies its beauty & depth, we actually preferring it to “Atlantic” the official music video adding to the amazing ambience of “A Bad Dream”, while its more laid back & chill like qualities hints towards an ushering in of this style of sound and is one, for us, that stands the test of time, some ten years after its release, one still available via https://itunes.apple.com/us/album/under-the-iron-sea/id159930850
Our third choice, while still from yesteryear, signalled a delightfully different direction in our weekly selections as this track is firmly in the electronic come progressive house category and, having taken a number of nostalgic trips down musical memory lanes with Steve Pitron’s classic compilation “Addicted”, this towering tune kept grabbing us by our coat tails and tugging hard for repeated hearing, meaning it had to make “Track of The Week at some point. Released towards the end of the noughties by Dutch D.J. & music producer Olav Basoski, “Beat Of My Heart” saw him team up with vocalist Errol Reid (also known as one half of British pop-reggae duo China Black), a vocalist in demand, notable collaborations including with Axwell and with Norman Doray, the latter’s huge hit “Last Forever” scoring much more significant success, yet this little known single, particularly in our preferred Redroche remix form, is in our estimation, as good if not better as its more familiar bed fellow track, this vivacious version available (with download links) to stream at https://soundcloud.com/dimanych/c-fake-path-olav-basoski-beat-of-my-heart-feat-errol-reid-redroche-remix
So, to our fourth and final pick for the month of April and, like the third, was inspired from that classic compilation, indeed the details of a vocal bootleg version of this track still eluding us, defining our decision to choose Paul Van Dyk’s landmark single release, “For An Angel”, although not in its original 1994 form, but the 2009 Spencer & Hill remix version. Yet while the German D.J. & music producer Van Dyk is a familiar name across the world of clubbing, his Grammy award winning status tells a much more mainstream story, six studio albums & four remix compilations along with film soundtracks and collaborations with bands & solo artists including Depeche Mode, Talking Heads, Justin Timberlake & Britney Spears, sit Paul on a much higher pedestal than his contemporary D.J. peers, while he also dabbles in politics, his former East German freedom starved childhood influencing his anti-war stance along with his enthusiasm for encouraging the youthful society to vote, gaining him much media attention. But he will always be best known for his debut single and in this remix form, is a worthy “Track of The Week” choice.
Well, that’s it for another month, while with May beckoning in a newer, if but equally nostalgic, set of sounds, Hed Kandi’s latest compilation “Hed Space”, opening our musical door to the likes of Tom Middleton & Croquet Club (see video above), this combined with a tricky month of treatment, our selections are looking like sitting much more in the laidback beach house come winter/summer chill style of sound, making this coming month, musically as much as anything else, look & feel decidedly different. (DISCO MATT)