I mentioned last week that John ‘Speedo’ Reis had a new band, The Night Marchers, who sound pretty great on Myspace. This week, a new album by his most famous old band, Rocket From The Crypt, has turned up; a live set that reminds me many of the best gigs I saw in the mid to late ‘90s were played by this awesome band.


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I found myself in the centre of a mild media hurricane yesterday, thanks to the musical map of Britain published in this month's Uncut becoming something of a hot topic. If you heard me trying to explain the principle of beats per minute on a local radio station, or trying to convince all of Scotland that they only listened to Runrig, I can only apologise.


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Just a quick bit of news to pass on. Bill Fay phoned up an hour or so ago, as he does from time to time, to let us know that he's preparing a new reissue of his two classic albums - this time with a bonus disc of unreleased material.


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I’ve just been reading your comments on yesterday’s Vampire Weekend blog – thanks for those. They helped me crystallise my thoughts about that much-vaunted African influence on the album. What’s interesting, I think, is not that they draw on African sounds, but how they point up the affinities between that spindly, melodically cartwheeling guitar sound and the indie-rock tradition.


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I know it’s a blogger’s imperative to write about albums several months before they’re actually released, but sometimes, it takes a little longer for me to get the hang of a record. Amusingly, I’m usually slow to like records which are immediately acclaimed elsewhere for their brilliance, accessibility and so on.


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Emerging from the REM binge today, we’ve had a go at the excellent debut album from Fuck Buttons, which I’ll write something about soon. And also, from a quixotic stream on a distant computer, I caught some of the Portishead record.


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Thanks for all your comments on the REM blog I posted yesterday. I thought it might be useful if I tried to answer a few of your questions – as best as I can, anyway.


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OK, then, I must admit I’ve been sceptical about this one, so disillusioned by “Around The Sun” (three good, if woefully overproduced, songs notwithstanding) that I didn’t even bother to check out any bootlegs of those “live rehearsal” gigs from Dublin last year. . . More fool me, it transpires.


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Some big new entries on this latest playlist, not least the arrival of REM's much-anticipated "Accelerate".


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By some immeasurably strong act of will, I’ve refrained from banging on about the Boredoms round these parts for the best part of three months – ever since, in fact, they played the best show I saw in 2007.


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Editor's Letter

The 39th Uncut Playlist Of 2014


A lot to get through here, but I'm indebted once more to the resource that is www.nyctaper.com, who this week have posted two amazing live sets by Steve Gunn and Ryley Walker. Elsewhere, there's a new Waterboys track to check out,...