So the UK election result will be known in a few hours, and the endlessly repeating conversations of empty possibilities have driven me upstairs to make another attempt to prove I'm not a terrible blogger like Nick Hornby (who is, of course, a wonderful writer in any form).
And even though, I still haven't got around to truly finish off my top albums of 2009 list (The XX? Olafur Arnalds? Or something else) - I'm afraid you're about to be subjected to another bout of enthusiasm for music I'm listening to right now, in 2010! This little lot come under the category "Phew", so here follows a list of music that's great - but that I did worry wasn't going to be... happy surprises,
We Are Scientists - Rules Don't Stop After 2005's truly immense "With Love And Squalor", the follow up three years later, "Brain Thrust Mastery" was, to these ears, a huge disappointment. I loved them so much, I especially loved being right at the front of their amazing Airwaves show in 2006. It was a massive relief and delight to hear this classic piece of guitar pop and fall immediately back in love with them. Great tune, great humour, nice video. Phew.
Blur - Fool's Day, which you can find all over the web, including here. What a nice surprise. I really thought that this would be a bad idea, but it's a lot better than most stuff on their most recent too albums. It's unmistakably Damon, it's unmistakably Graham. And it mentions Ladbroke Grove. It's all good. Phew.
Kele - Tenderoni - here's a thing to dread. The lead singer of one of my very favourite bands, strikes out alone. These things usually end in a messy and over-arty way, in a bid to prove independence. Not this time - or at least if it is, it's in a way I like. A lot. Listen to it here, tell me if I'm wrong. It's dirty, gritty dance music, and better than anything else in the vicinity. Bring on the album. Phew.
The Fall - Your Future Our Clutter - a whole album of phew. It seems now that every new album by Mark E Smith is hailed as a return to form. Does that even make sense? Whatever, another triumph for this most unique of set-ups. It's always a phew moment. I don't understand how this shambolic seeming group churn out something so fascinating and addictive. Listen to "Bury Pts 1 & 3", "Funnel Of Love" or "Y.F.O.C. / Slippy Floor". Magic. Phew.
And I just can't go away without the most surprising, delightfully nostalgic thing I've seen for a long, long time. If you never loved Adam & The Ants, then this may not mean a whole lot, but he was my first musical hero, I was that kid with the stripes on his face. He's been through all sorts of shit, but he's back playing again as the Pirate Metal Extravaganza (hmmm) and he played in the Scala at King's Cross recently. It sounds amazing here, next time - you'll find me in that audience. Phew.