Monday, 22 April 2013

Acordes Con Leonard Cohen

by Various Artists

I was trying to get hold of this 2 CD + DVD box for the last couple of years but it was not available on Amazon or elsewhere. Finally I bought the 2012 reissue. According to The Leonard Cohen Files, the original 2007 album and 2012 reissue are not the same.

The DVD contains a live concert recorded at Teatre Auditori, Sant Cugat del Vallès, Barcelona on January 13, 2007. The liner notes say that the material of the audio albums was recorded during 12, 13 and 14 January 2007. I understand that each day the cast of Acordes gave a full live performance. Apparently, two different non-redundant set of songs were chosen to fit two CDs. The 2007 audio version more or less matches the Sant Cugat del Vallès set, but the song order is different from that on the DVD. On the other hand, 2012 reissue contains bonus tracks which have nothing to do with Acordes concerts. For instance, Aleluya (Hallelujah) is taken from Yasmin Levy’s Sentir — a bit too over the top, really, it sounds out of place here. All in all, it is a fascinating record. My favourite tracks are Impermeable azul (Famous Blue Raincoat) by Christina Rosenvinge, Baila conmigo (hasta el fin del amor) (Dance me to the end of love) by Perla Batalla, and Mi gitana (The gypsy’s wife) by Duquende — the latter an evidence that Leonard Cohen can write some mean flamenco songs.

Wednesday, 10 April 2013

The Venetian’s Wife

by Nick Bantock

Who’d imagine that a book mostly consisting of one woman’s diary excerpts and her e-mail exchanges with a 500-year-old ghost could be that entertaining?

Oops. I’ve said too much.

From: S. Wolfe
To: Mr. N. Conti

Mr. Conti,

Are you saying in a roundabout way that you have hacked into a Vatican computer?

From: Mr. N. Conti
To: Sara Wolfe


I suppose you could put it that way. Yes.

From: S. Wolfe
To: Mr. N. Conti

Mr. Conti,

What’s a betting shop?

From: Mr. N. Conti
To: Sara Wolfe


What’s a researcher?


Thursday, 4 April 2013


by ДДТ

It’s been a while since I was listening to a new (for me) DDT album. It’s been even whiler since I’ve enjoyed it that much.

Now DDT always has had my utmost respect. No matter what, you can rest assured that the band delivers — “доставляет”, as they say in Russia nowadays. Yet somehow in the early noughties I lost interest. The last recordings from that time that I heard, Единочество, left me wondering if Yuri Shevchuk lost interest too.

Enter Иначе (2011). While I was not looking, the line-up has changed beyond recognition. Apart from Shevchuk, the only familiar names are those of drummer Igor Dotsenko and saxophonist Mikhail Chernov, who appear only on two songs (Пустота and Встреча). This is an entirely different band, which sounds, well, different. Иначе. I don’t care much of synthesizer but I love the horn section. And vocalist Alena Romanova. A young band, with a new will to fight.

At 67 minutes, it is a long album. I’d say it could have been a great album if they left a couple songs out. My favourite tracks are Проводник, a poem read by Shevchuk; Noise № 2 composed and sung by Romanova; and Песня о свободе — a proof that DDT is still DDT, and that there is still hope for Russia left.


  1. Noise № 1 (Константин Шумайлов)
  2. Родившимся этой ночью
  3. Солнечный свет
  4. Эй, ты, кто ты
  5. Пустота
  6. Кризис
  7. Проводник
  8. Напиши мне, напиши
  9. Встреча
  10. За тобой пришли
  11. Новая Россия
  12. Noise № 2 (Алёна Романова)
  13. Песня о времени
  14. Когда ты была здесь
  15. Песня о свободе
  16. Юго-Западный ветер