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288 tracks from England have been recommended (see also UK).
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Shake And Crawl  performed by House Of Love  1990
Recommended by john_l [profile]

My favourite House Of Love song, it's a mid-paced typically guitar-drenched track with an insistent percussive backing and that low ostinato guitar riff with the little flourish in it. It has lots of minor chords which give it a rather gloomy feel (like many of my favourite songs). Actually their later song "Feel", which was one of the '90s best, could be "Shake And Crawl" slowed almost to a literal crawl ...

from The House Of Love (2), available on CD (Fontana)



  22 May 03 ·Genza: I liked the House of Love - and 'Christine' is a genre-defining classic. But like many of the other sub-Valentines clones (Chapterhouse, Boo Radleys, etc.), I thought some of their tunes suffered from being slow and uneventful. Like you, I love minor chords - but I think other bands did that multi-layered guitar sound better. But hey, it's just my opinion and all that.
  10 Dec 03 ·lobo: The House of Love were brilliant and way ahead of their time, not to mention sadly overlooked in the pages of pop music history. They were hardly "Sub-Valentine Clones" - the band's sound dates back to their origins in 1986. The members of My Bloody Valentine were struggling to define their sound at that point (they were still working through their goth phase!). Guy Chadwick was a masterful songwriter and Terry Bickers was the preeminent guitarist of his time. Nobody knew their way around a stack of effects pedals better than him. Best songs: Safe, Christine, Destroy the Heart, Loneliness Is A Gun... This band's music is nothing short of superb.
Dance Girl Dance  performed by Cinerama  1998
Recommended by john_l [profile]

Dave Gedge, main man in long-time British alternative band The Wedding Present, decided to do something a bit different in the latter part of the 1990s, so he enlisted girlfriend Sally Murrell and a number of musical friends and put out some really good material under the name Cinerama. The purpose was to do some less noisy, more classic-pop oriented tunes, and it worked like a charm! This track, their second single, is a sprightly '60s-influenced number, which means it's mega-tightly produced and has the rhythm guitars at the back of the mix where they belong. It also has a nifty string and piano arrangement. Lyrically it's a fantasy about a girl he wants very badly (not in real life presumably). The song is on my '90s top ten list for sure!


available on CD - Va Va Voom (spinART)


Frozen Orange Juice  performed by Peter Sarstedt  1969
Recommended by john_l [profile]

Best known for "Where Do You Go To My Lovely", which is a sad French or Italian-sounding song, the followup "Frozen Orange Juice" is a delightfully happy Spanish-sounding song, i.e. the exact opposite (lyrics of both songs reference the European nations listed above). It lopes along in 6/8 time with orchestral flourishes galore, particularly on strings, although horns, woodwinds and harp are also evident. Brilliant!


available on CD - Update


I See The Rain  performed by Marmalade  1967
Recommended by john_l [profile]

So I'm watching the finale of Survivor: Marquesas (a year ago, in May '02) and on comes this ad for The Gap with, to my utter astonishment, the guitar intro to this 1967 classic. And better yet, they got the correct version! Meaning, the one with the gritty-sounding guitars (there have been a number of inferior versions released that were re-recorded, or at least remixed badly, or something). "I See The Rain" should be quite familiar to British readers but perhaps not to Americans. Anyway, I've always loved this song, and it's the aforementioned guitar sound that makes it stand out, although those harmonies in the chorus and a just-right unhurried tempo help make it one of my faves ...

from There's A Lot Of It About
available on CD - The Definitive Collection (Castle Communications)


Love’s A Lonely Place To Be  performed by Virginia Astley  1982
Recommended by john_l [profile]

A gossamer light track with cello, glockenspiel and some other non-standard rock (?) instrumentation, by a classically-trained musician. The only song that it is heavier than is the Caravelles' 1963 hit "You Don't Have To Be A Baby To Cry", which is probably the song it sounds most like as well, if I had to pick one. Quite gorgeous! But there was a re-recorded version that found its way onto the 1986 "Hope In A Darkened Heart" LP; it's NOT nearly as good as the original.

from Promise Nothing (Why-Fi)


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