Following on from our first Elba round up it is now my turn to tell you what has put a big smile on my face this year. You had better get used to my presence as I’m here to stay for awhile. I will be battering you with many over-excited updates in the coming months. Don’t be concerned, Phil and Chris will be checking in regularly and providing calm and succinct words too. We are very much for balance and representing as many angles as we can.
As for my annual alter ego: it is a fictional character. This is not due to looks though I am similar in frame (excluding the big bump). I have been informed a lot more than I’d care to reveal that the constant droll tones of one Juno MacGuff ‘JUST IS’ me. I’m not sure how I feel about this but I’ve learned to accept it. My own babble follows the pic.
Album – Joanna Newsom – Have One On Me. I have not stopped playing this album since its release. It is beautiful. I had concerns over it as Ys has become one of my most treasured albums. Also the news of its length (the triple CD/vinyl release) had me wondering whether there would be more content than quality. Thankfully my fears turned out to be entirely unwarranted. It is a glorious album, her idiosyncrasies are slightly muted and the warmth of the scoring emphasized. Getting to see her playing the new material live this year was definitely a dream come true for me. I could go on and on here but I’ve already said plenty in previous posts and in conversation on this matter.
Best Gig – This is a strange one. One is mentioned above and of course all the Elba gigs have a special wee place in my heart. However, I saw The Dead Weathers late in the summer months and they completely mesmerized me. I was enjoying their second album but had never really given time to the first. On record, both are a little too polished. However, live they work really well and the sound is a little more dirty and frantic in places. I’m also a huge fan of The Kills so seeing Alison Mosshart in the flesh finally was great. I guess I rate it so highly as I hadn’t expected to react so positively.
Favourite New Band(s) – I‘ve been listening to a lot of Zola Jesus, Warpaint and Sleigh Bells.
Musical Memories of 2010 – I guess getting more involved with Elba this year was the best musical experience for me. Working closely with Phil and obsessing over Sufjan on a weekly/daily/hourly basis always puts a smile on my face. I also got to pursue/annoy some really great bands over the year too. This leads me right into the next section.
Hopes/Plans (music) for 2011 – Elba, Elba, Elba. I’m more intending rather than hoping to devote a lot of my time to the blog. This plus a lot more focus on live music as I’ve missed far too much in the last few months. My purse is already losing weight with January and February looking great for gigs. Other than that, I have a trip to New York planned for the summer months and there is no doubt that soaking myself in the music scene over there will be a big part of the adventure for me.
That leaves just one more installment for the annual. What does Phil have to say? You can see for yourself on Friday.