Photo 7 Sep 1 note Time for some more Gary Larson! (Well who else could it be?)

Time for some more Gary Larson! (Well who else could it be?)

Text 7 Sep Kate Bush : A List

With her first live performance for 35 years, there has been an enormous amount of media and cultural interest in all things Kate Bush. 

The BBC broadcast an excellent new documentary: “The Kate Bush Story : Running Up That Hill”. It featured a plethora of talking heads including Natasha Khan, Peter Gabriel, Guy Garvey, Neil Gaimon, Elton John, Stephen Fry et al. In addition there was a compendium of Kate Bush’s appearances on the BBC which while often immensely creative and stunningly presented often, sadly featured her lip-syncing.

The Hammersmith Apollo live shows titled “Before The Dawn” have been greeted with almost universal, 5-star, acclamation… 

“…a magical new dawn…fabulously unconventional…” (The Guardian)

“Barefoot and black-clad in three-quarter length coat and long fringed fabrics, she’s like a gorgeous Gothic temptress…it’s quite stunning, undoubtedly the most ambitious, and genuinely moving, piece of theatrical pop ever seen on a British stage. Which is just what everyone here tonight was hoping for.” (The Independent)

“…wondrous, rich and powerful.” (Daily Telegraph).

For the sake of her millions of fans I just hope that a DVD will be forthcoming.  

Now comes the news that she has followed her stage comeback by becoming the first woman to have eight albums in the charts at the same time.

In fact she is only beaten to the record of most albums by just Elvis Presley, who had 12 entries in the top 40 after his death in 1977 and the Beatles who had 11 in 2009.

Kate Bush’s album The Whole Story is at number six, three places ahead of Hounds of Love.

At number 20 is 50 Words For Snow with The Kick Inside, her first album at 24, The Sensual Word at 26, The Dreaming at 37, Never For Ever at 38 and Lionheart at 40.

All this attention on her has prompted me to inevitably try to put together a top 10 KB songs for my blog…and as there are so many great songs to choose from, I’ve cheated by including, the two song cycles as single entries.

1. Cloudbusting

2. The Dreaming

3. The Ninth Wave (Dream Of Sheep/Under Ice/Waking The Witch/Watching You Without Me/Jig Of Life/Hello Earth/The Morning Fog) 

4. The Sensual World

5. Moments Of Pleasure

6. Breathing

7. Sky Of Honey (Prelude/Prologue/An Architect’s Dream/The Painter’s Link/Sunset/Aeriel Tal/Somewhere In Between/Nocturn/Aerial) 

8. Snowed In On Wheeler Street

10. The Coral Room  

Bubbling Under

Wuthering Heights

In Search Of Peter Pan

The Man With The Child In His Eyes

Quote 6 Sep 1 note
After silence, that which comes nearest to expressing the inexpressible is music.
— Aldous Huxley
Photo 29 Aug 1 note Cool dude checking out his new wheels. (Grandson Ziev in Tel Aviv).

Cool dude checking out his new wheels. (Grandson Ziev in Tel Aviv).

Text 13 Aug 2 notes Prog Rock And Me : A Confession

My Prog Rock magazine occasionally conducts a poll among its readers, contributors and musicians to create a top 50 or 100 of prog music albums. Well, in the latest one published just a matter of a couple of weeks ago, out of the top ten, I own nine. 


Out of the remaining 90 I own 42! 

I have been trying to fathom quite why this has become my favourite rock music genre. Words like “innovative”, “epic” and “experimental” come to mind. So do phrases like “music without frontiers” and “the perfect balance between art and entertainment”(pretentious? moi?). Maybe it’s just clear evidence of a deranged mind and that I am rapidly losing my marbles… Marbles? (at number 52 in the charts!) and Marillion’s finest hour.  

PS My missing tenth album from the top ten is “Thick As A Brick” by Jethro Tull. An omission that I hope will eventually be corrected.

Text 4 Aug 1 note 4th August 2014 : The Centenary Of The Outbreak Of The Great War (1)

It seems incumbent upon me as a lover of history and writer of a blog on music, poetry, cricket (among other subjects) to commemorate this day with some suitable entries. This is the first of two entries for the day…first Siegfried Sassoon’s poem ‘Dreamers’.

Soldiers are citizens of death’s grey land,
Drawing no dividend from time’s to-morrows.   
In the great hour of destiny they stand,
Each with his feuds, and jealousies, and sorrows.   
Soldiers are sworn to action; they must win   
Some flaming, fatal climax with their lives.
Soldiers are dreamers; when the guns begin
They think of firelit homes, clean beds and wives.
I see them in foul dug-outs, gnawed by rats,
And in the ruined trenches, lashed with rain,   
Dreaming of things they did with balls and bats,
And mocked by hopeless longing to regain   
Bank-holidays, and picture shows, and spats,
And going to the office in the train.
Audio 4 Aug

4th August 2014 : The Centenary Of The Outbreak Of The Great War (2)

This beautiful song is by Ivor Gurney, the Gloucestershire poet/composer featured in an earlier post. Unbelievably Gurney wrote this whilst in the trenches in 1916. The words are by his friend Will Harvey (written a year earlier). This orchestration is by a third Gloucestershire friend, Herbert Howells. 

I’m homesick for my hills again -
My hills again!
To see above the Severn plain,
Unscabbarded against the sky,
The blue high blade of Cotswold lie;
The giant clouds go royally
By jagged Malvern with a train
Of shadows. Where the land is low
Like a huge imprisoning O
I hear a heart that’s sound and high,
I hear the heart within me cry:
"I’m homesick for my hills again -
My hills again!
Cotswold or Malvern, sun or rain!
My hills again!”

Played 2 times.
Video 20 Jul 1 note

"Tears In Rain : Time To Die" : Blade Runner (Reposted from January after the original clip was deleted)

I’m feeling rather miffed that my son blogged this iconic speech first as I had planned to blog it myself later…but I’m going to blog it anyway as it is just utterly wonderful. Also I want to add to Chris’s copious annotation by mentioning that part of this was improvised by Rutger Hauer much to Harrison Ford’s confusion. 

Video 19 Jul 2 notes

"that hallelujah morning"…

New single / video from Elbow…Real Life (Angel). My favourite track on “The Take Off And Landing Of Everything” and an wonderful video to go with it. 

Text 18 Jul My 4th List : 12 Rock Albums I cant live without…

The Beatles : Abbey Road

Jimi Hendrix : Are You Experienced?

IQ : Frequency

Yes : Going For The One

Steven Wilson : The Raven That Refused To Sing (And Other Stories)

Donald Fagan : The Nighfly

Anathema : We’re Here Because We’re Here

Elbow : Build A Rocket Boys

Pink Floyd : Live At Pompeii

Peter Gabriel : So

Kate Bush : Hounds Of Love

Marillion : Marbles 

Bubbling Under  …

Steven Wilson : Grace For Drowning

Elbow : Leaders Of The Free World

Midlake : Courage Of Others

Midlake : Antiphon

The Doors : LA Woman

Steely Dan : Gaucho


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