This week’s playlist comes courtesy of Paint, the new solo project of Pedrum Siadatian, best known as the guitarist/singer in the Allah-Las. Paint is celebrating the release of their self-titled debut album, released earlier this month on Mexican Summer (the label also celebrates their ten year anniversary tomorrow). Check out the playlist, full of speak-singing classics and obscurities.
—Keenan Kush, Talkhouse Operations Manager
Because sometimes meaning gets lost in singing, here’s a list of some of my favorite songs where feelings are found in the monotonal (obvious contenders have been omitted, i.e. Lou R., Syd B., ‘n Mark E.)
Mirrors — “Shirley”
’70s V.U. worship from Ohio. A simple, cool tune with a lyrical dark side and severe moody turnaround for the outro. Hearing these guys for the first time was a revelation.
The Only Ones — “Breaking Down”
Led by British junkie poet laureate Pete Perrett in the ’70s, most of their catalog falls in the punk/loud spectrum, but they were more nuanced than their peers. I love their mellower stuff, like this one where Perrett’s voice really comes through. Also see: “Broken Arrows.”
Pip Proud — “Adrenaline and Richard”
He’s been called the “Australian Syd Barrett,” but more innocent and rambling in his delivery. Minimal accompaniment/arrangement and a one-take-jake ambiance—it’s hard not to be charmed, as it’s almost like he’s making up the story as he goes along.
Kevin Ayers — “Song for Insane Times”
A baritone casanova of the Canterbury scene (was not wise to bring him around your wife—ask John Cale: “The bugger in the short sleeves fucked my wife”). He had a clever social commentary lyrical style that is especially resounding on this one. No one else sprinkled prog on their pop better.
The Gist — “Being True”
Solo project of Stuart Moxham, previously the guitarist of Young Marble Giants, channeling Kevin Ayers in the ’80s, except if Ayers recorded in his bedroom and preferred opiates over wine.
The Saints — “Untitled”
One of their more sentimental songs, but plenty of snotty delivery to glue it together. One of Australia’s finest. These guys were great songwriters and their stuff holds up better than a lot of punk stuff from the same era.
Soft Boys — “I Got The Hots”
This isn’t usually a track on Underwater Moonlight that people seem to talk about, but it always stood out to me. Surreal lyrics and an amazing timeless chorus. Robyn Hitchcock still performs and he’s great.
Julian Cope — “Laughing Boy”
J Cope’s stuff is very varied but I really like the atmosphere of this recording in particular. If you like this, check out the rest of the BBC sessions. I prefer many of these live versions over their LP counterparts.
Bill Wyman — “Nuclear Reaction”
My favorite Stone, solo career-wise. A perfect marriage of lyrics and eerie feeling in this one. Bill never shied away from synthesizers and the technologies available at the time and showed a lot of personality in his records. Eventually went on to make his own metal detectors for finding buried antiquities.
Feelies — “It’s Only Life”
’80s V.U. worship, but definitely amongst the best of Reed’s various descendants. This is a beautiful, compelling song that always makes me feel better.
(Photo Credit: Taylor Boylston)