Thursday, 27 May 2010

Sha-La-Lie Sha-La-La!

It's Eurovision time again on Saturday, and we here at Too Much Apple Pie (or me, at least - Spike's not heard it yet) are getting firmly behind the Netherlands' entry, the wonderfully catchy Ik Ben Verliefd (Sha-La-Lie) by Sieneke. This is a real throwback to Eurovision songs of yore, and I loves it!

Stand up for your love rights

Ray Wonder - We Got to Be Good to Each Other mp3

Wednesday, 26 May 2010

Baby love

It's the fantastic new single from Juni Järvi featuring Annika Norlin, it's titled (I Love It When You Call Me) Baby, and it's out today!

Buy the mp3 single here

Read all about it at Eardrums

Tuesday, 25 May 2010

The Conn is on


Bobby Conn - Never Get Ahead mp3

Usury unfriendly

Watching Sky Sports News over breakfast this morning, I was flabbergasted by the content one of the commercials that seem to come along every few minutes on that station. Said advert was from a company called QuickQuid, who are one of these firms who loan money out and then ask for a whopping amount of interest when you repay the loan. You may brand them loan sharks, I couldn't possibly comment. Anyway, so far so predictable for daytime TV ad breaks.

But the thing that really shocked me with this advert was something in the small print at the bottom of the screen (albeit in slightly larger print than the really tiny stuff). The loans are doled out at an expected repayment interest rate of 2356% APR. 2356%!! Almost made me choke on me Shreddies it did. Now I'm no financial genius, clearly, but surely that can't be right, can it?

I was so sure I must have misread the percentage figure and missed a decimal point somewhere, that I went online to check the figures. And what did I find? I hadn't misread the number at all. It actually is a 2356% APR. This is all perfectly legal apparently. Morally repugnant, but legal.

Just pity those poor sods who fall for the soft soap of the advert, where they make it sound all bright and sunny, like they're your bezzie mate doing you a favour or something - they even give you a "special" 25% discount code for when you apply for your loan. (Surely a 2350% discount code would be better - right, consumers?)

The worst thing is, it's the most vulnerable and desperate members of society who are going to be lumbering themselves with these crippling debts (about 6.5% a day, is it?), and whose lives are going to be made even more insufferable as a result. Shouldn't someone in a position of power be doing something about this sort of thing? (Even if they could just stop these adverts being shown on TV, it'd be something.)

Friday, 21 May 2010

7th Heaven - Hot Fun

Because it's high summer all of a sudden and this reminds me of school holidays of yore and more innocent times in general, when members of the public weren't used to living their whole lives on camera. If they made this video today it'd just be to a backdrop of distracted faces and mobile phones held aloft. *sigh*

First person to correctly identify the UK seaside resort featured in this vid wins an improvised lolly-stuck-in-a-stick-of-rock microphone by the way. Except they don't, obviously. What do you think we are, made of money?

Tragically (well, slightly disappointingly), Hot Fun stalled at #47 in the Gallup charts, a fate possibly influenced by the fact that it didn't enter the top 75 until the week of 14th September 1985 i.e. just as the summer had ended. By the cringe the record company (Mercury) were slow out of the blocks with this one!

7th Heaven - Hot Fun mp3

Sunday, 16 May 2010

Weaver only just begun

A couple of fantastic but largely ignored 1998 singles from Jane Weaver today. Here is everything I know (i.e. have just found out by Googling) about Jane Weaver:

Despite hailing from Liverpool, Jane released her early singles on Rob Gretton's Manchester Records label. Controversial.

Prior to going solo Jane was in Britpop hopefuls Kill Laura. I'd not actually heard of them before tonight though so don't know if they were much cop.

She's married to DJ Andy Votel, and has worked alongside the likes of Doves, Elbow and Badly Drawn Boy.

She has released three albums to date: Like An Aspen Leaf (2002), Seven Day Smile (2006) and Cherlokalate (2007).

Her middle name is Louise.

She has a MySpace page here.

Apologies for the factual yet strangely (or not) uninspired nature of this post, by the way. Please do give the songs a go though as - unlike my earnest typings - they are dead good.

Jane Weaver - Scream & Shout mp3

Jane Weaver - Cupboard Love mp3

Friday, 14 May 2010

New demo from Irene

It's been a while since we've heard anything new from Labrador's Irene, so hurrah for this brand new demo, The Catcher in the Rye. It's a lot more low-key and restrained than a lot of their earlier, more ebullient stuff but I likes it.

Irene - The Catcher in the Rye (Demo) mp3

And - talking of their older stuff - still sounding good!

Irene - Baby I Love Your Way mp3

Irene - Little Things That Tear Us Apart mp3

Thursday, 13 May 2010

Mellow Birds

So, then, Come Around by nineties Kiwis The Mutton Birds. One of the most stupendously brilliant songs of the past decade or two (which meant that, predictably, it failed to make a dent in the UK charts). A perfect piece of guitar pop, and - I know these things are subjective and all, but I think I can say this with confidence - utterly impossible to dislike.

Also, browsing the video's comments section on YouTube, it seems that there's a school of thought to suggest that the girl sitting around looking a bit redundant in the vid is none other than a young Keeley Hawes of Keeley Hawes nude fame. Wouldn't have a clue meself, as it just looks like a generic model type to me, but what do you reckon? Is that her? And is that really David Moyes on lead vocals?

The Mutton Birds - Come Around mp3

Tuesday, 11 May 2010

Three new songs from Marit Bergman

Well, one of them's a cover version, but you get my drift. Marit says that "these are the last songs that I will be releasing for a long time" and adds, mysteriously, that she'll be concentrating on unspecified other projects for the time being. Suppose we'd better make the most of these, then.

Marit Bergman - He Will Never Be Your Boyfriend mp3

Marit Bergman - Free Falling (Tom Petty cover)

Marit Bergman - Hunting mp3 (right click)

Actually, this gives me an excuse to feature one of my favourite YouTube clips, in which Marit joins Jennie Abrahamsson and Frida Hyvönen backstage before a show in New York, where the trio perform an A cappella version of the latter's Birds, in front of a make-up mirror. Bloody magic, this is!

Monday, 10 May 2010

Blue Sky thinking

Oh, this is priceless! A piece of jaw-droppingly compelling TV from earlier this evening featuring a colourful exchange between infamous New Labour attack dog Alistair Campbell and Sky News political correspondent Adam Boulton, over who exactly should govern the country in the wake of last week's no-result election.

Basically, Campbell winds up Bolton about his supposed political leanings in response to which the Murdoch man loses his cool completely and ends up throwing his toys out of the pram in much the same way Colin Montgomerie might after shooting 85 in the final round of the Masters. He's as mad as hell and he's not going to take it any more.

I've never really liked Campbell but I kind of love him for this!

Catherine Feeny - Mr Blue mp3

Friday, 7 May 2010

Three of a Kind #104

For all those people - politicians, party workers, vote counters, broadcasters, pundits and TV viewers alike - who stayed up all night monitoring the election. And still you didn't get a definitive outcome. Bet you're feeling pre-tty silly now, eh? Me, I slept like a log.

(With apologies to any actual insomniacs reading this.)

Madder Rose - Sleep, Forever mp3

Echobelly - Insomniac mp3

The Darlings (Allo Darlin') - You Shook Me All Night Long mp3

Mr Khan's Exit Poll

Because we may need some cheering up if those latest polls anything to go by.

Here, Mr Khan, the Leicester community leader from Bellamy's People - as played by Adil Ray - offers some sage advice to voters. Very funny!

Lots more Mr Khan election videos over here

Thursday, 6 May 2010

We love love love love all your money

If you'd have asked me two decades ago (let's assume for a second that you'd have been aware of my existence two decades ago) what my favourite song of all time was, I'd have nominated Jocelyn Square by Love & Money. Sure, it's slick and smooth and very polished in that late-eighties guitar-pop-funk way, but I've always had a soft spot for it, and it still sounds great to my ears even now. Beautiful lyrics too. When I was 18 I thought lines like: "Sometimes you don't know something's open till it shuts / I loved you so much, I hated your guts", were the very epitome of profundity. It still rankles a bit that this missed out on the top 40 as well (it stalled at #51, and the band never did manage a proper UK chart hit). I know, I really ought to learn to let these things go.

(Sadly there's no accompanying mp3 today as I couldn't get the bastard computer to recognise the CD when I popped it in to try to burn the song; my P.C. has an annoying habit of rejecting any CD more than about five years old. Which is most of my collection if I'm honest. Git.)