“Everybody knows the good guys lost”

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My wife and I were lucky enough to see Leonard Cohen when he visited Vancouver a few years back and it was one of the best gigs we’ve been to. His albums drop into my music rotation on a regular basis and his book, Beautiful Losers, was one of the first I bought when I moved to Canada. His last couple of albums have been a farewell of sorts but I was still very sad to hear that he’d joined the long list of great people we’ve lost in 2016. To quote Indiana Jones and the Crystal Skull – “We seem to have reached the age where life stops giving us things and starts taking them away.” There’s so many great Leonard Cohen songs but Everybody Knows is my favourite and one that keeps popping into my head these days. And for a bit of variety, here’s a cool cover by a band I need to rediscover, Concrete Blonde. The movie footage in both videos is from Pump Up The Volume which is a fun movie I also need to rediscover.   Sign up for my newsletter and get four free ebooks. CLICK HERE to get started. [“Everybody knows the good guys lost” by Philip Harris first appeared on Solitary Mindset … Read More

“I don’t recognise who I see”

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A few weeks ago I posted some old school goth by The Mission. Now it’s time for some new old school goth by The Mission. Met-amor-phosis is the first track from The Mission’s new album – Another Fall From Grace. Having listened to it a bunch of times it actually makes me quite optimistic for the new album. It has the familiar Mission feel from their earlier albums but with a more modern feel. The new album is out on September 30th but I’ll probably be pre-ordering through Pledge Music.   Sign up for my newsletter and get a year of stories, completely free. CLICK HERE to get started. [“I don’t recognise who I see” by Philip Harris first appeared on Solitary Mindset on 14th September 2016]

“Whiskey and the devil and the witching hour”

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I was introduced to The Mission (or The Mission UK if you’re in the US)  in college because I wore a lot of black. A friend of mine gave me a tape (yes, cassette tape) and said “you’ll like this”. The logic behind the gift was that as I wore black all the time, I must be a goth, therefore I must like goth music. I don’t think I’d really heard of any of the bands on that tape before then, but it opened my ears to the wonders of bands like The Sisters of Mercy, Siouxsie and the Banshees and The Mission. From then on I was hooked. Music wasn’t quite as easy to get hold of back then (CDs were just on the horizon) so I was basically stuck with vinyl and the odd bootleg recording on tape. I devoured it all though, and I spent hours listening to songs like this:  And watching videos like this. That one is intentionally tongue in cheek, apparently. The band referred to it as “Carry On Goth”. I may have also <cough> dressed like that occasionally. The Mission were at their best playing live, and I’ve lost count of the number of times I saw them … Read More

“I’m going to wrap it up”

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Thanks to Joe Hill (have you read The Fireman yet) for this one – Anna Karina dancing to The Chasers‘ Inspiration. [“I’m going to wrap it up” by Philip Harris first appeared on Solitary Mindset on 27th July 2016]

“You go for a whirl”

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Presented without comment. Sign up for my newsletter and get a year of stories, completely free. CLICK HERE to get started. [“You go for a whirl” by Philip Harris first appeared on Solitary Mindset on 13th July 2016]

“I’m so empty”

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Oh look, Garbage have a new album out. And it’s excellent.   Empty is the first single from Strange Little Birds. I’ve been listening to the album a lot for the last few days and I really like it. No sign of a Vancouver stop on the tour yet, but I’m keeping my fingers crossed.   Sign up for my newsletter and get a year of stories, completely free. CLICK HERE to get started. [“I’m so empty” by Philip Harris first appeared on Solitary Mindset on 8th June 2016]

“got the muse in my head, she’s universal”

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Hard to believe it’s been 20 years since Placebo released their first album but it is. I remember them appearing in one of the UK weekly music newspapers (NME maybe) and according to the interviewer, the record company was concerned they were taking off too quickly. Probably just hype but they certainly had an impact – great lyrics, catchy tunes and a lead singer who didn’t conform to the normal rock and roll stereotypes made them a huge hit. I was lucky enough to see them at Rock City in Nottingham and it was a great gig. Nancy Boy is one of my favourite tracks from that first album.   In 2003 they released a bonus disc with a couple of their albums featuring a bunch of cover songs, including this excellent version of Kate Bush’s Running Up That Hill.   Placebo are still going strong and are going on a 20th anniversary world tour this year. No idea if they’re coming to Vancouver yet, but if they are, I’ll be there. Assuming I can get tickets. And they aren’t too expensive Sign up for my newsletter and get a year of stories, completely free. CLICK HERE to get started. [“got the muse in my head she’s universal” by Philip … Read More

“Tired of listening to gossip, gossip and complaints”

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I haven’t posted any music on a Wednesday for a while so here’s one of my favourite bands playing a song that seems particularly apt today. Sign up for my newsletter and get a year of stories. CLICK HERE to get started. [“Tired of listening to gossip, gossip and complaints” by Philip Harris first appeared on Solitary Mindset on 17th February 2016]

“A man of words is a man of lies”

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My wife and I got to see David Duchovny sing on Saturday. Yes, that David Duchovny. It was a fun evening, and Duchovny was even joined on-stage by another X-Files alumnus – Nicholas Lea who played Alex Krycek – and the two of them performed Knockin on Heaven’s Door. That means we’ve now seen Mulder, Scully, Cigarette Smoking Man and Krycek in person. I wonder what Mitch Pileggi is up to these days. To celebrate, here’s the video for the title track from Duchovny’s debut album, Hell or Highwater. [“A man of words is a man of lies” by Philip Harris first appeared on Solitary Mindset on 26th August 2015]    

“Wherever there is danger he’ll be there”

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A few weeks ago, Netflix Canada added the 80s TV show, Danger Mouse, to its line up. My wife and I watched the first episode and it was as fun as I remembered. Like all the best kid’s TV it has humour that works for kids and adults alike. Danger Mouse will be returning to British screens later this year and CBBC recently released a teaser trailer…   Good to see they haven’t changed the theme music and given that DM’s eye patch will now be an gadget laden “i-patch” it seems they haven’t lost the sense of humour either. Time will tell, I guess. Hopefully they’ll follow this up with a remake of the spinoff series – Count Duckula. For a limited time, I’m giving everyone who signs up to my mailing list 5 free books, including a copy of my science fiction novel, Glitch Mitchell and the Unseen Planet when it’s released later this year. Click here to sign up and get your free books. [“Wherever there is danger he’ll be there” by Philip Harris first appeared on Solitary Mindset on 22nd July 2015]