Find the Colour

My song of the moment: “Find The Colour” by Feeder, from their album Comfort in Sound. The album is a bit of a mixed bag, ranging from the rocking “Come Back Around” to the twee (it tries for melancholy, but misses) “Love Pollution”. “Find The Colour”, though, is outright joyous.

It flows over with positive energy and sends tingles down my arms. The essentially simple lyrics juxtapose darkness and happiness, pain and love, and come to the conclusion that if you’ll open your eyes to the people around you, you’ll let the light back into your heart. The chorus exults:

“Cause now I can see that I love all the things
That you do with each day
And it feels so damn good”

Feeder’s drummer, Jon Lee, committed suicide last year. A lot of this album focuses on coming to terms with that loss. “Find The Colour” shows that grief can, and does eventually give way to happiness.

For my part, I am fortunate not to have suffered such grief in my life for a long time, and I hope that lasts. To me, every time I hear the song I think of Abi and Alex, and how special they make every day. Yesterday evening Abi was tickling Alex into fits of hysterical giggles. Every time I hear him laugh, I’m reminded of how lucky I am, and how much joy every day holds for me.

“Every second that passes me by
With the blink of an eye
It just feels, so damn good”

Toad Dates

A Christmas present has arrived early, in the form of the full set of dates for Toad the Wet Sprocket’s concert tour in February/March of 2003. Yay! And there are dates in convenient places, such as New York, Boston, Chicago, Detroit. Flights to these locations in February are very affordable, and we wouldn’t even have to hire a car. On the other hand, choosing someplace like Cincinatti would make for a fun road trip…

Road trip! Road trip!

I’m very excited, as you may be able to tell. I’ve downloaded one of the recordings from their 12 December tour in benefit of the Santa Barbara Rape Crisis Center, and the guys sound amazing. Seeing them live, in person, would be a dream come true.

Merry Christmas, everyone, and may your own dreams come true in 2003.

Toad The Wet Sprocket reunited (temporarily)

Possibly the most exciting piece of news I’ve had this year (okay…maybe that’s a slight exaggeration, but only a slight one) was the email from the Glen Phillips mailing list a couple of weeks ago that said that Toad The Wet Sprocket are getting together again to play some gigs.

Big woo!

Toad The Wet Sprocket are one of my favourite bands of all time, and Scott and I were both mightily upset when they split up about four years ago. Now, none of them are saying that they’re going to get back together again permanently, but the fact that they’re playing some shows is just fantastic. From Glen’s site:

“Everyone is happy to be playing together again, but we’re keeping our goals very short term for the time being. It’s fun, and we’ve all surprised ourselves with how good we sound after five years of not playing together.”

Since they split up, Glen has done a solo album, and Todd and Randy have now finished two albums with Lapdog. Glen’s CD, “Abulum”, is a work of sheer beauty. It took me a while to get into some of the songs, but they are some of the finest pieces he has ever written. (I find it hard to even listen to “My Darkest Hour” too closely, because it makes my cry.)

And while Glen has been going all acoustic and mellow, Lapdog has been rocking the house. I don’t have their albums, but they have some mp3 downloads on their web site, and they sound energetic and fresh.

Basically, they’ve all been recharging their batteries, and doing fun new stuff that they enjoy. Bring them back together again as Toad, and the combination might well be pure magic.

Unfortunately, the shows they’re playing in December are all in California. And we’re not going back to CA this year. Damn.

But…. They are talking about a twenty city tour in February. And one of the last newsletters said:

“And for those of you non-west coasters, be patient, the new year could bring good news for you.”

To see Toad play would be utterly fantastic. I have this sneaky little plan brewing in the back of my mind…. In February flights to the East Coast of the US won’t be too expensive. The flights aren’t too long, either. So it might just be feasible to take a couple of days off work, fly out there, see a gig, and fly back. That would just be so cool!

New music

Bought a couple of new CDs over the weekend: Anthology by Alien Ant Farm, and The Hour of Bewilderbeast by Badly Drawn Boy. (Neither of these was on my wishlist. I was very tempted to go for Virgin’s 5 CDs for £50 instead of their 2 for £22 price to catch some of the ones that are on my wish list, but I tried to be moderate.)

Bewilderbeast is brilliant album, just bursting with memorable tracks and beautiful melodies. Anthology wil probably take more time to work its charms on me. I love the two singles AAF have had out so far, Smooth Criminal and Movies, bot of which feature some amazing drumming by Mike Cosgrove, but the rest of the CD hasn’t jumped up and grabbed me by the throat just yet.

And then on Monday I also picked up Alanis Morissette’s new album, Under Rug Swept. The single Hands Clean is fantastic. It is one of the best tracks on the album, but there is plenty of other excellent material there. There are only two tracks that seem duff right now: That Particular Time and Utopia, both of which are slow numbers. The up-tempo tracks are all either immediately memorable, or are “growers”. Pretty good stuff!

Found it!

Found it!

For months now, Scott and I have been trying to figure out a song. It features on the trailer for the film Pay it Forward. We both heard it on that trailer, and thought: I know that song, and I like it. But who sings it, and what’s it called?

So started the search. We downloaded the movie trailer off the internet, and tried to identify the small snippet of lyrics that are sung. We got as far as “I feel like a…”, but the word after that was unrecognizable.

We searched the internet for these lyrics. We hunted movie web sites for any reference to the music used in the trailer, because it didn’t appear to be on the movie soundtrack. All we found were a couple of people who also seemed to be trying to track the song down. A few helpful people pointed out that the other song on the trailer was Wonderful by Everclear, but that wasn’t really of any use to us.

Then the song showed up as a snippet of background music in the MTV show Cribs (the episode featuring Robbie Williams. Scott emailed MTV, but they wrote back saying that they can’t answer specific questions regarding shows. Scott also wrote off to a DJ at Forth One, but they haven’t replied at all yet.

But when Scott & Ange were in Belfast the other week, they went to see the film Heartbreakers. And there was the song again, this time in yet another trailer, being shown before the film.

They came round this evening, partly so that we could watch the film Pay It Forward to see if the song was featured in the film, but hadn’t been included on the soundtrack. If it had been in the film anywhere, it would have shown up in the end credits. It wasn’t, and it didn’t.

However, we tried to track down the trailer Scott & Ange had seen in Belfast. Ange didn’t remember the name of the film , but she thought it had the word “beautiful” in it. A quick check on IMDB for a list of upcoming releases didn’t give us anything. A few more searches on Google, gave us the answer, though: Crazy/Beautiful, starring Kirsten Dunst.

We downloaded the trailer, and there it was! Our song, featured as the first chunk of music.

A short hop onto Amazon.com to see if they had the soundtrack. They did, but we didn’t recognize any of the names on the track listing. But as we read through the list of comments on the soundtrack, the following quote jumped out at us:

“The long-form movie trailer used three songs, beginning with Filter’s “Take a Picture” (which can be found on their album Title of Record) and then The Crystal Method’s “Keep Hope Alive” (available, among other places, on their debut album Vegas).”

Bingo!

The song is Take A Picture by Filter.

Scott and Ange had to leave, because it was getting late, but I’ve just downloaded it via Morpheus, and I’m listening to it right now. I like it. I suspect Scott will be buying the album tomorrow just to get hold of this one track.

The film (Pay it Forward), was okay until about the last ten minutes. That ending is just wrong. The film doesn’t lead up to it. It’s going off in a completely separate direction, sparking off threads that never get resolved, and then suddenly it runs into this dead end. Didn’t like that.