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#atozchallenge: K is for Rock…

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Ummm, ok, it doesn’t begin with K.

But I’ve been run off my feet today and just haven’t had time to write anything, so I’m going to cheat for today’s A-Z challenge and share some K-related rock tracks from my collection.

One of the most willfully avant garde rock bands of the ’70s, in an era when intellectual pretentiousness, drama and bombast were practically compulsory in the world of prog, King Crimson stood head and shoulders above their less highbrow rivals.
Their continually changing lineup and eclectic mix of styles probably explains their longevity and their wide appeal accounts for the fact that they are still going strong now.

This concert was recorded in Japan in 2003 and if you’re a fan it’s well worth a watch. If you’ve never heard them before, watch it, then go and listen to their back catalogue.

Speaking of less highbrow rock, here’s some that soundtracked much of my teenage headbanging years; the glorious, big-haired, spandex-clad riffage of Swiss metal band, Krokus, with their 1980 album, Metal  Rendezvous.

One of my favourite intros to a metal album, too.

A bit more up to date for the next one and a song that starts with a K, from the modern pretender to prog’s crown, Muse and Knights of Cydonia

…returning to the good old days to end this quartet of classics, with one you may not expect in a list of rock tracks; this is Kraftwerk (yes, those robotic Germans) and a surprisingly punchy moment from early in their career, here is Heavy Metal Kids.

Play loud and enjoy, see you tomorrow.

#atozchallenge

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Posted by on April 13, 2016 in A - Z challenge, Music, Video

 

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Double century musical rewind…

I was pleased and somewhat amazed to note that my last article was the 200th post on Diary of an Internet Nobody, a milestone that, back in June 2012 would have seemed like an unreachable goal.
Back then the only thing I was sure of was that there would be no theme to the blog, and that the one thing it wouldn’t be was an excuse for me to rant evangelically about all the music I’d been listening to.

Well, since then I’ve blogged about everything from faith to photography, Easter to etymology and movie mash-ups to magic mushrooms, but even with that wide range of topics, music has never been far away.
No matter if it was shoehorning a tune into a post with the intention of illustrating a point, embedding video clips of bands playing at festivals we attended, or simply cramming as many songs as possible into a  tenuously linked, stream of consciousness daisy chain, just for the hell of it, I don’t seem to be able to resist dropping a musical reference in there somewhere.

As I’d given in to temptation a couple of weeks ago and devoted two whole posts to the glorious days of ’80s synth-pop, and never having been one to pass up the chance to promote talented artists I admire, I thought I’d take the opportunity afforded by my double century of blog posts to look back at some of the musically inclined folks I’ve met since opening the door onto the Great Big Internet just a few short years ago.

Even as I began writing this post it occurred to me that I’ve been lucky enough to meet, or be introduced to, a great many gifted musicians through the magic of cyberspace.
Whether it was via friends I already knew, fellow bloggers, or new acquaintances I made on Facebook, there’s no shortage of talent out there just waiting to be discovered.
So today I’d like to present my very own showcase of audio-visual highlights from my time spent trawling the ether, for your delectation and enjoyment.

Roughnecks.

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One of the many local bands that we are fortunate enough to have around North Devon are these hard rocking, heavy riffing dudes who play classic rock, blues and prog covers. Fronted by a work colleague of mine, Richard Woods, the unusual twist is that not only does he belt out an very creditable Robert Plant impression, he also plays bass and theremin, (strange, spacey electronic gizmo, played by passing one’s hand through the instrument’s invisible magnetic field) allowing for some other-worldly effects on songs by gig favourites, Pink Floyd and Led Zeppelin.

In this suitably psychedelic clip they take on Led Zep’s You Shook Me.

Duncan Virgoe.

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An old friend of mine and consummate singer/songwriter/musician (plus a couple of roles in successful stage musicals) Duncan has featured previously on the blog as the subject of a video experiment we made to accompany one of his own compositions. Since he has made a new, improved version of the video, I thought I’d remind you of the song, the deeply funky He Come To Pass.

Katy Virgoe.

Music clearly flows in the veins of the Virgoe family, as Duncan’s teenage daughter Katy shows in this clip of her performing her own song, Please Don’t Cry.

Jono Harrison.

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Almost as though I was back in Tenuous Lynx mode, the chain of connections goes on, as my next clip is from Jonathan “Jono” Harrison, compatriot of Duncan from their touring band The Freaking Musos and rising star in his own right.
A singer/songwriter who has in recent months toured with big names such as The Cutting Crew and 10cc, I first met Jono when he came down with Duncan to play some busman’s holiday gigs at pubs on the North Devon coast a few years ago.

Here he is with one of his own songs, Josephine Waits.

…and the daisy chain continues with the multi-talented drummer from that same touring band, Joe Caple.
Under his pseudonym of Caveman Genius, Joe works as musician, producer and owner of Paper Bones records in Brighton.
In the first of two clips, here’s a video made by FishBoy for the Caveman Genius track, Jim.

…and from one of Joe’s other projects, indie band Wild Cat Strike,  another FishBoy video for Buried at Sea.

Continuing the Brighton theme, here’s a treat for any lovers of British hip-hop, the more-street-than-I’ll-ever-hope-to-be, mischievous stoner rap of Benaddict on Yogocop records with Anomeric.

….and the equally weed-stoked Rain

After all that herbal high-jinx, how about going Up on Acid Mountain with the fabulously twangy sound of my friend Banjo Dai, a man who really knows how to pick those strings…

LISTEN HERE

…as does one of my acquaintances from across the pond, Mike Mando. Here he is with the band he plays in, S.P.I.N. (Soul Patch Is Neat)

…and for those of you that appreciate something a little more experimental and electronic, how about the trance-like soundscapes of a Gareth Farmer aka Carbonates on Mars.

CHECK OUT “CYBERVILLE” HERE.

But if you want something a bit grimier, sample a taste of The Dark Lord of Dance himself, the enigmatic, reclusive and currently dormant Ludwig Hiscariot.

Here is his take on Danny Elfman’s theme to Beetlejuice

…along with an original piece, Candle Dance, which he was good enough to compose for one of my early experiments in stop-motion animation.

Finally, here’s a link to a friend and ex-workmate (and shoo in for the next Dr Who) Steve “the Dr” Conway, veteran of many bands and still finding time for composing and playing solo music, despite his fancy new job at our local college.

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There’s a link to a fine selection of his songs below, please take a listen to those and all the other artists’ material, because supporting up and coming, local and underground talent like this can only help ensure our rich musical heritage stays alive and vibrant for the enjoyment of generations of music fans to come.

STEVE CONWAY’S REVERBNATION PAGE.

Thanks for listening, hope you found something to interest, excite, or intrigue you.

{Additional artist photos courtesy of Duncan Virgoe, Jono Harrison and Steve Conway}

 

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