Monday, 18 February 2019

2018 Latecomers: Spend Monday In The Bahamas

I almost didn't have a post today. I realise that's hardly the end of the world, and I've let days gone by without posts before, but this time was different. Because I had posts... only other people had already written then.

Originally I'd planned on doing a Grumpy Old Men / 2019 Contenders post about the new Specials album, but Rigid Digit and  John Medd said pretty much everything I have to say about that at the moment (for the record, my opinion falls somewhere in between theirs - RD seems to like it a lot, while John Medd questions whether it's actually The Specials at all, more a reformed Funboy 3 who realised the name of their earlier band would make more headlines).All I can add to that is that while I enjoyed the record, I did feel there were times that it came across as a Guardian journalist's wet dream. The tracklist runs like a checklist of society's ills and sometimes the message seems more important than the music. I don't object to any of the songs on their own, but crammed together on one disc it does feel a bit like being lectured by a 6th former at times. Maybe it's the grumpy old man in me... that's probably why I like this track best of all.

The Specials - Embarrassed By You

Bloody kids, eh?

With that idea abandoned, I thought about featuring another Long Song as last Monday morning... until I realised (I had to check!) that Drew had already featured both of them. (I'd already written one of them, but I'll spare you... go read Drew's instead.)

Paddy McAloon - I Trawl The Megahertz

Isaac Hayes - By The Time I Get To Phoenix

All of which led me to the Bahamas, a late musical discovery from 2018 that may have troubled my end of year countdown if I'd heard it sooner.

Canadian musician Afie Jurvanen, aka Bahamas, has been making records since 2009, but his fourth album, Earthtones, is the first one to be picked up on my radar. He obviously listened to a lot of Prince as a kid but also has a cheerfully tongue-in-cheek approach to his lyrics, reminiscent of John Grant or Father John Misty without the egomaniacal side. Hopefully it'll brighten up your Monday morning (what's left of it)...


  1. In spite of Jerry being a no-show, the reunion was prominently The 'classic' Specials until Neville's health-related retirement from the band and John's sad passing. For me, 'Encore' adds to their legacy, whatever moniker they happen to be trading under. To be perfectly honest my expectations were low when news broke that new Specials music was on the way, but I was surprised and impressed by what I eventually heard. That'll teach me.

    1. I mostly agree. (And I don't think anybody really expected Jerry to return.) I've found low expectations to be a good starting point for most things in life.

  2. It's all a bit sad reading the comments above. The bands I went to see when I was young are rapidly losing their membership - Glad Terry is still out there making new music though, whatever the flavour.

    As for struggling to come up with a theme for today, I honestly don't know how you post daily anyway. I am now down to once a week which I really am trying to stick to but not easy.

    1. Yes, but you have a life.

    2. Just a different life at the moment - 3 years ago I was spending about 12 hours a day in front of a computer screen - got it down to around 2!


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