Songs from the Vault

The last edition of SFTV was a full-on metal fest.  We’re going to ramp things down now and enter a more chilled out space.  So, without further ado…

Kicking off this edition is Chromatics with their killer tune, Shadow.  I first heard Chromatics on the Drive soundtrack (2011), a Jan Hammer-sounding track called Tick of the Clock which didn’t nudge me into checking out any more of their music.  I didn’t hear anything of them again until seeing them at the end of an episode of Twin Peaks (season three), where the band is featured playing Shadow in the Roadhouse, Twin Peaks’ destination of choice for live music.  Unlike Tick of the Clock, Shadow features the dream-like vocals of Ruth Radelet.  It’s perfect for Twin Peaks and is one of my favourite tunes of recent years…

Next up is Myth from the 2012 album Bloom by Baltimore duo, Beach House.  I stumbled upon this track on Spotify, though I think I’ve heard their music on various Spotify playlists.  Anyway, there’s a certain vibe to the tune that I appreciate, reminiscent of certain bands from the late 80’s and early 90’s…

I mentioned that Chromatics’ Shadow was one of my favourite tunes of recent years.  Another is Apocalypse by Cigarettes After Sex, from their eponymous 2017 debut album.  I got to see this live a few months ago and hearing this tune was a magic moment.  I find it almost impossible to not press repeat once I’ve heard this tune (and I’ve just done so while writing this post!).  You’ll see why…

I mentioned earlier that Beach House’s Myth was reminiscent of earlier bands.  The specific band I had in mind was the Cocteau Twins.  I didn’t become aware of the Cocteau Twins until 1988 with the release of their fifth album, Blue Bell Knoll.  However, it was their next album. 1990’s Heaven or Las Vegas, which was a bit more up my street.  The album’s opener, Cherry-coloured funk, bring Liz Fraser’s vocals (perhaps better known these days for Massive Attack’s Teardrop) and Robin Guthrie’s guitars together to create a heady, swirling vapour of sound…

Last up is The Sundays, another one of those bands that I think of when I think about the Cocteau Twins.  Joy, the last track on their debut album, is marked by its simplicity; a simple drum pattern and bass riff, minimalist chords and Harriet Wheeler’s vocal floating over the top.  The band is better known for their single, Here’s Where the Story Ends, but Joy is for me the album’s standout track…

The last few editions of SFTV, including this one, have been themed ones, so I’m going to return to some random selections next time round, so stay tuned!