The marking mountain isn't getting much lower, so obviously I'm looking for distraction and procrastination activities. One of those is looking up the hidden pasts of my musician friends The Nightingales (you've just missed their UK and Ireland tour, but there's a European one planned for later in the year).
Browsing for dodgy BBC live session bootlegs, I came across Robert Lloyd and the Four Seasons: the 'Gales lead singer's attempt at pop stardom in the halcyon pre-Britpop days of indie. One of the guitarists on the album is Craig Gannon, the 'Fifth Smith'. The purists reckon RL+TNFS were a bit poppy and the album was over-produced, but I like it. The lyrics still have the bike-chain viciousness of the Nightingales, but coated in sugary hooks.
By way of comparison, here's the Nightingales' Dumb and Drummer - after thirty years, they've made a video!
Last night rather than carry on marking, I went to the local arts centre for an Non-English open music night. Everyone got 10 minutes on the decks (some losers had MP3s, ugh) to play whatever we wanted. This suited me perfectly: I have over 20,000 LPs, 10"s and 7" in my flat, two minutes walk from the venue. My friends brought along some Dutch riot girl, German pop and various other delights, but I went for an all-Welsh lineup:
First: some Y Cyrff, a couple of whom became Catatonia later on.
Then some electro by a recent discovery, Dau Cefn:
(better recording here). After that, some krautrock-psychedelia by my old friends Ectogram. The track I played isn't available online, but here's a representative sample:
and finally some symphonic pop by Rheinallt H Rowlands, whom I never saw live sadly:
I shall definitely be going back. Obviously such a night is designed for obscurantist one-upmanship. I'll be bringing along Ectogram's 'Spitsbergen' single, which was indeed No. 1 in Spitzbergen, some Georgian folk music and some Chechen rebel songs. That'll show them. It's just a shame that the Angry Samoans aren't actually, well, Samoans.
Finally, for giggles, here's Rocking With Rita, the Fuzzbox/Robert Lloyd/Ted Chippington non-hit single.