Last year I came across an album that is, simply put, one of the most beautiful I’ve ever heard: Diamond Mine by the British duo King Creosote and Jon Hopkins. The whole album is well worth a listen and the song Bats in the Attic is a great place to start. Staying in the UK, I’d also like to highlight Gerard Love’s (of Teenage Fanclub fame) new project Lightships. Like all his work, the melodies are simple but wonderful and his arrangements fit them perfectly. I look forward to spending hot summer afternoons with a Campari in hand and this on the stereo. Finally, since the passing of their drummer and singer Levon Helm, I’ve been listening to the Band a lot this week. Since I first saw Martin Scorsese’s concert film The Last Waltz as a teenager, Helm has been one of my favourite musicians. His music has a rare passion and honesty that blows me away every time I listen to it. As the story goes (courtesy of Ian Rankin’s Twitter account) Levon Helm quit Bob Dylan’s first electric tour to work on an oil rig in the Gulf. It might be apocryphal but I like it and it fits with my image of the man. I’ll happily believe it.
Bats in the Attic – King Creosote and John Hopkins
Sweetness In Her Spark – Lightships
Up on Cripple Creek – The Band