Tag Archives: T. Rex

Rocks In The Attic #674: Wilson Pickett – ‘The Midnight Mover’ (1968)

RITA#674Aside from Mustang Sally, In The Midnight Hour or The Land Of 1,000 Dances, Wilson Pickett doesn’t get half the credit he deserves.

The Midnight Mover was largely co-written with a then-unknown Bobby Womack, and finds Pickett trying his hardest to continue his successes of the previous couple of years. The title of the album – and its lead single – is a clear allusion to his 1965 hit In The Midnight Hour; he even name-checks the song in the fade-out of side-B’s Down By The Sea.

Ever since seeing Edgar Wright’s 2017 film, Baby Driver, I’ve kept my eyes peeled for songs about girls called Deborah. There’s more than you’d think! Not only did Wright overlook Pickett’s Deborah for his soundtrack – opting instead for Debora by T. Rex and Debra by Beck – but Pickett sings his song partly in Italian, something you’d never expect to hear from a soul screamer from Alabama.

Hit: I’m A Midnight Mover

Hidden Gem: I Found A True Love

Rocks In The Attic #387: Jive Bunny & The Mastermixers – ‘Jive Bunny: The Album (1989)

RITA#387It says something that at the height of hip hop culture, when teens in urban America were rapping over samples of James Brown and Kool & The Gang, a couple of blokes in Rotherham, England were dong far less cool things with samples.

It might just be the beat that makes it so awful. While the hip hop beat coming out of America was based around Clyde Stubblefield’s drum break in Funky Drummer – give the drummer some, indeed – on the other side of the Atlantic, the straightforward 4/4 beat that drives Jive Bunny’s music has none of that class. It’s just never-ending, going on and on, rampant like, well, a rabbit.

The actual samples used are quality though – Glen Miller, ‘50s rock n’ roll, ‘70s glam rock – it might not be James Brown, but it ain’t (super) bad either. It’s just the incessant Stars On 45 beat that dates it. Thankfully, once you get past Swing The Mood, the other songs on the album aren’t that hard to listen to, as they don’t all have that fake, driving beat over the top. The glam mix of Do You Wanna Rock is particularly nice, especially when you hear something like T-Rex’s Get It On in all its glory.

When Jive Bunny first came out, I would have been 10 years old. I had the cassette of this album and I seem to recall asking DJs to play it at discos (alongside Billy Joel’s We Didn’t Start The Fire, for some bizarre reason). Years later, I used to work alongside the mother of one of the guys behind Jive Bunny – I’m not sure which of the guys it was, but I seem to remember hearing he made a tidy sum off it.

Hit: Swing The Mood

Hidden Gem: Do You Wanna Rock

Rocks In The Attic #269: Tame Impala – ‘Lonerism’ (2012)

RITA#269I heard Tame Impala’s Elephant earlier this year on a compilation CD given away free with a rock magazine. I liked it immediately – my song of the year, hands down. What a groove – like the Super Furry Animals doing a T. Rex cover of the Dr. Who theme, with John Lennon on vocals.

I bought the album that weekend (I can’t remember the last time I did that on the strength of hearing just one song) and it became an instant favourite on the turntable. In fact the album was the soundtrack of my trip down to Dunedin to see Aerosmith play in April. It’s funny how albums do that, especially new albums. I remember when I used to go on holiday with my parents – begrudgingly of course – in my early teens. I would buy a new album just before the holiday, and it would always weld itself into the fabric of my memories of the trip.

The rest of Lonerism isn’t as focused as Elephant. I’m not entirely sure what genre of music the whole album could be classified under; although the music press is keen on pigeon-holing them as a psychedelic rock band. I’m not so sure. It doesn’t sound a million miles away from the likes of Super Furry Animals, but it’s more laid-back than that. Kevin Parker, the man behind the music, has heard a Floyd album or two in his time, that’s for sure.

Hit: Elephant

Hidden Gem: Keep On Lying