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18 tracks from Wales have been recommended (see also UK).
Order by - songtitle - year - performer - date recommended
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Keep On Running  performed by Tom Jones  1971
Recommended by n-jeff [profile]

The Spencer Davis Group Version is good. But this is even better, it kicks in with great brass stabs and then this fantastic Bass Line kicks in, similar to the original but with a deeper, funkier feel. Nice drums and Toms great voice. For once it keeps the groove going all the way through, one of my friends used to close a disco night with this, and it rocked every time.

from Tom Jones Great Hits (Decca)



Big White Cloud  performed by John Cale  1970
Recommended by tinks [profile]

A superb song from Cale's first solo LP after leaving the Velvet Underground. Very melodic, lushly orchestrated and sophisticated, an absolutely impeccably-crafted pop song. I really love the echo effect on the whole thing, coupled with Cale's ultra-fluid viola playing. A great album from start to finish, actually.

from Vintage Violence, available on CD (Columbia)



  28 Feb 02 ·G400 Custom: Also check out 'Gideon's Bible' from this album. Soothingly poppy, but with a fantastic, soaring chorus - not usually one of Cale's strengths.
Hometown Unicorn  performed by Super Furry Animals  1996
Recommended by delicado [profile]

Super Furry Animals are one of a select group modern bands I really like. In a sense, they are too 'rock' for me, but they are so furiously inventive and original that I'm always impressed by their songs - even the ones which I wouldn't necessarily listen to by choice. 'Hometown Unicorn' is a masterful pop anthem with a rich Bowie-like 1970s feel to it. The lyrics are also masterful, and concern the late 70s story of Frankie Fontaine, who claimed to have been abducted by an alien spacecraft. From the first line of the song, I was hooked - 'I was lost, lost on the bypass road...' Many thanks must go to my friend and fellow site user, phil for introducing me to this track and this band.
ps, the group are incredibly good live as well.

from Fuzzy Logic, available on CD



Presidential Suite  performed by Super Furry Animals  2001
Recommended by delicado [profile]

To be honest, I have little idea of what this song is about, but it certainly sets an intoxicating mood - rather intense and dramatic, but very cool. It's a sprawling, majestic pop song, opening gently with a faint trumpet solo and a picked guitar, and then building up nicely with strings soon after the vocals come in. The chorus is simple and catchy, and the orchestration is lush and beautiful, and the vocals are tender. There is a nice cinematic instrumental section in the middle, with some nods to Burt Bacharach. I don't get the impression this is the most coherent song ever, but there are poignant moments lyrically, such as 'You know that when we met, there were fireworks in the sky...sparkling like dragonflies', set against the moody chorus. It feels kind of nice to be really enjoying a new, 2001 song for once. The new album is really quite good. There are some duff songs, but overall I'd say it deserved better reviews than it received.

Update, ok, I've now figured out this is about the Clinton/Lewinsky furore. I guess I'm just not primarily a lyrics person...

from Rings around the World, available on CD (Epic)



Andalucia  performed by John Cale  1973
Recommended by delicado [profile]

This is from a great album that I recently received as a gift. Andalucia opens with a beautiful echoey acoustic guitar. It's a tender, simple song, with delicate guitar playing, entertaining lyrics (like 'Andalucia - when can I see yer'), and a great melody. The atmosphere is enhanced by a steel guitar and some nice multitracked vocals. I guess Cale's voice is an acquired taste, but I find him rather earnest and charming.

from Paris 1919, available on CD (Reprise/Warner Archives)



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