In '94, I was 13 going on 14, and I was into Oasis. I'd just come out of my grunge period - Soundgarden had gone, Nirvana were all but over and, hard as it seems to imagine at the time, Oasis were the most hardbody outfit out. They spat, sneered, and swaggered their way into my affections with one hot 12" called Supersonic, and I was hooked. For an album and two albums worth of B-Sides they were awesome, but they peaked with the Whatever interim-single, and it's been downhill ever since.
But my interest was piqued by an article on Stereogum about some new Oasis demos that have leaked into Youtube. Hell, I thought, maybe, after a decade of shit, they've got that ole magic back.
The songs are I Wanna Live A Dream (In My Record Machine), Stop The Clocks, and Nothin' On Me. Nothin' On Me is definitely the worst, and also bears the distinction of being the only one sung by Liam. Now, Liam still has a much better voice than Noel (even as cartoonish as it has become), so it is kind of mean and selfish and lame of Noel to keep the (relatively) better songs for himself. Like Kanye with his beats. Give some of them shits to Method Man, fool!
Anyway. Those other two are both winsome Noely ballads. They're better than most of the winsome Noely ballads I've heard over the past decade of not liking Oasis that much, but they're hardly Talk Tonight or The Masterplan. Best of the pair is Stop The Clocks, which improves significantly on repeated listen, and is notable for its uncharacteristic dabbles in existentialism. "What if I'm already dead?" beseeches Noel, "how would I know?"
Stream: Oasis - Stop The Clocks (Demo)
Stream: Oasis - Talk Tonight
Back in the early nineties, Oasis were banging out a single and three awesome B-sides every three months. It could be argued that they went shit around the time that hectic pace let up. Perhaps with that in mind, after a sample-bullshit-hampered '07, '08 is proving to be a productive year for our pal Marvin.
Hot on the heels of Superhero comes That One Time EP, out in June. Explains Marv's manager Tego:
"It's an EP of 6 songs for the summer months. A street summer, a young summer, an Ibiza summer, a cold summer, a London summer. We're basically looking at an EP every 2 months now. Singles are dead. We want to put out proper releases every time we drop."
Track two of said collection is a joint called Boyspot. This track caught me completely off guard - I was so not expecting some ish like this from Marvin right now! It's some really ill d 'n' b inspired post-grime sickness from producer Jack Nimble, all sub bass, stuttering hi hats and off key high-end snare slaps, with a frantic rap from Marvin about the ills of wastemen. "That zone you're in, that's a Boyzone," notes Marvin, doing his best Newman and Baddiel impression, "that life you live that's a Westlife." Say word!
Marvin's getting mad conceptual on his new shit, and for Jack - suddenly free of samples and emboldened with a new outlook on production following the lessons learned making Marvin's album - the future is wide open. Hype shit ahead!
Stream: Marvin - Boyspot
Finally, some sexy new shit from Blueprint. Props to Silent Bob69 who put me onto this dude a month back via the comments section (what did we do before that shit?). The kid is definitely interesting, creative, and most importantly, dope. His new EP, which you can get for free here, and on CD here, features BP rapping over collages of music made from Funkadelic songs. Blueprint explains:
"I started making beats out of as much of their music as I could and putting lyrics to them, some stuff i wrote on the spot, other stuff was ideas that I had played with before but never finished. I had the record pretty much done for a couple of years but I felt like I didn’t have any audio of them speaking that really explained what they were about, so I put it on hold until I could find some interviews. Once i found them i finished it up, and here it is.”
Musically, this stuff smashes like Hulk. It's especially refreshing that dude avoided the obvious loops and sounds - he's gone for a lot of the more raw, rock and psyche infused stuff. Lyrically he is totally taking the piss out of all your favourite rappers for the most part. "It's quite ironic what I say these days / you got an oversized hat but you workin' with a peabrain," he spits on Dont' Make Me Laugh. "Cats that never seen a turntable got the nerve to make a record and call it Go DJ." Owch!
Stream: Blueprint - Don't Make Me Laugh