Your daily dose of awesome: with his tenure aboard the International Space Station coming to an end, Commander Chris Hadfield sings David Bowie's "Space Oddity".
Many Grail readers will be familiar with Dr Rupert Sheldrake, a "maverick" biochemist noted for his parapsychological experiments, and his proposal of 'morphic fields' to account for certain scientific anomalies. However, few probably know that Rupert's son Cosmo is a talented singer and multi-instrumentalist, forging his own career in music. Like his father, Cosmo seems to have a wonderful mix of genius and eccentric, which is often a perfect recipe when it comes to the arts. Check out some of his tunes:
Cosmo sings and performs with his brother Merlin, with both a part of the band Gentle Mystics, as well as on his own via the technique of looping with improvisational vocals (as in the video above). Check out Cosmo's website for more examples of his music, or listen to some of the tracks below:
You might also like:
- Biologist Rupert Sheldrake Explains the Ten Dogmas Holding Science Back
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- Rupert Sheldrake Survives Stabbing
- The Science Delusion
- A Reply to Michael Shermer, by Rupert Sheldrake
- Sheldrake vs Randi: The Letters
- Sheldrake Indicted for 'Crimes Against Reason'
- New Scientist: Ashamed of Sheldrake
Hard to imagine that the man would have turned 70 years old today. In tribute, "Voodoo Child (Slight Return)"...after 40 or so years, still one of the heaviest songs of all time.
If I don't meet you no more in this world,
I'll meet you in the next one.
Don't be late...
Some people enjoy music that tells a story, some people want it to make them dance. I like every type, but the experience I'm always on the lookout for - in all genres - is that hairs-on-end, spine-arching moment of suddenly feeling possessed by some sort of cosmic energy. If you're like me, you'll really enjoy M83's Hurry Up, We're Dreaming - it's absolutely filled with epic moments.
The album certainly shows its 80s synth influences - from Simple Minds-ish pop-rock ("Reunion", "Ok Pal") through to Vangelis-style atmospherics ("Splendor", "Hurry Up We're Dreaming"). The epic power chords and synth riff of "Steve McQueen" make it the best high-school prom song never to be played in the 80s, and it might only be pipped for best pop song on the album by "Midnight City" (if you can handle the latter's rather repetitive, grating riff).
In fact, as a double album the only criticism I really have of the Hurry Up We're Dreaming is that at 22 songs, some of the tracks in the middle fall by the wayside a little compared to the epic grandeur at the beginning and end of the album.
Anyhow, check the album out, it's well worth a listen. To whet your appetite, I've included the track "Echoes of Mine" at the top of the page (as the soundtrack to a very nice timelapse film by Colin Rich), and below you'll find my favourite song on the album, "Wait". It's a real slow-burn, building up until by the end you can't help but air-drum to the slightly lazy behind-the-beat drum fills (love the subtle use of the bass synth swelling in volume towards the end to really up the dynamics too).
But you may just find that you've heard more than a few of these songs already - I heard at least a half dozen during the Olympics coverage, and they've also made their way into recent movie soundtracks (for instance, "Outro" is in the recent trailer for the Wachowski's Cloud Atlas). Which speaks for how well the songs on this album can evoke those epic, transcendental feelings.
Hurry Up, We're Dreaming on iTunes
This is the goods, one man creating some musical magic. Treat yourself (the jaw-dropping awesomeness begins around a minute in):
You can put some well-deserved money in the artist's pocket at his website, where you can download mp3 tracks at the price you think it deserves. Not sure I have *that* much money though...
Prog-metal band Mastodon's 2009 album Crack the Skye is a classic - created with a solid backbone of extended riff-a-thons, and decorated with lyrics laced with mysticism and mystery, it's one of my favourite albums of the past few years. Their new album, The Hunter, is due for release on September 27 - but to whet our appetites they've released the entire thing for free on YouTube a week early! So, for those that want some fresh music playing while they work today, here it is:
There are some sweet visualisations to some of those songs by the way, if you've got the time to watch while you listen. Don't forget to pick up the official album release when it becomes available next week, for the complete listening experience.
A short musical interlude before diving into a new week of Grailing: Keith Medley, Ancestors, on a 27-string guitar that he designed and built himself...
More about Keith Medley here.
Farewell to Gary Moore, one of my favourite ever guitarists - dead at 58. Here he is doing Hendrix's "Red House", live at Wembley. Oh that vibrato...
May he be chatting to Jimi and SRV as we speak.
Prog and ambient music lovers rejoice: yesterday saw the release of the latest album from The Orb, Metallic Spheres, which features the genius of David Gilmour of Pink Floyd on guitar. Here's some 'behind-the-scenes' footage of the recording process:
Gilmour's contribution to Metallic Spheres comes forty years after this hour-long Pink Floyd performance for San Francisco public TV Station KQED in 1970 - the man has been making great music for a long, long time.
Yes, I am a Gilmour fan. Amazing guitarist and songwriter.