Late Night Stargazing

A few weeks ago I mentioned in passing how much I like Embrace’s first album, The Good Will Out.

I’ve listened to it again since then, and would like to retract that.

And clarify.

Other than the singles from the album, and the title track (which remain ace in my humble opinion), it’s a fairly dull and pedestrian affair which, were I ever to be pressed to make such a list, would not make my Top 100 Favourite albums ever.

However, (as my History teacher used to dictate), I do still really love the singles and the title track from the album in question.

As evidence, this is what they sounded like before Chris Bloody Martin got his dull, dirty hands on them:

Embrace – The Good Will Out

See? Not so bad really (even if the end is ripped off from Hey Jude).

More soon.

Late Night Stargazing

A repeat posting, but it’s been a couple of years since this song appeared, so I’m sure you’ll forgive me for what I’m about to do.

As I began writing today, I was disturbed by the amount of fireworks I could hear going off in my locality. It hadn’t occured to me that this was the closest Saturday to November 5th, when bonfires and fireworks and explosives are considered perfectly acceptable.

Anyway, this is not a band I care much for, although as I mentioned when I last posted this song, I do have a soft spot for their debut album.

In my opinion it’s good to have an open mind, and to be able to concede that you like something buried in a band or artiste’s back catalogue, especially when the general consensus is that you should either hate or never admit in public to liking anything by them. There’s no such thing as a guilty pleasure (although I might be stretching that to a point tonight…).

Here’s….oh gosh, I’m really going to do this, aren’t I….here’s a really good – not great, but good – record by Embrace:

Embrace – Fireworks

More soon.

Late Night Stargazing

A confession.

I really like Embrace’s first album, “The Good Will Out”.

Actually, I quite like a couple of singles off the album after that too.

But there’s always been issues with Embrace.

Firstly, they featured two brothers. Not necessarily an issue, but “The Good Will Out” was released in 1998, when two other brothers, also in a band, were well on their way to stardom. It was on this basis that the music press drew comparisons, which were for the most part unfounded. Lazy journalism, if you ask me. Or perhaps catering for an idiot readership who needed similarities between acts to be spelled out to them. “Look, here’s Oasis, they’ve got Liam and Noel Gallagher! And now, look over here, here’s Embrace, they’ve got Danny and Richard McNamara [Yes, I did have to check]! And they’re all from The North! They must be the same!”

You may as well say that The Proclaimers are the same as The Jesus & Mary Chain, because they’re both from Scotland, have two brothers in the band, and they’re all called Reid. (As an aside: remember when two different acts used to record a double ‘A’ single, one act on each side, covering one of the other’s songs? Wouldn’t it be great to here those two covering each other? Just imagine The Mary Chain doing “Let’s Get Married”, or The Proclaimers strumming “You Trip Me Up”. I demand this happens. Now.)

Secondly, they got Chris Martin to write their comeback single, “Gravity” in 2004. If they hadn’t already lost me by that point, then that would have been the final nail in the coffin for me and Embrace.

And appropriately, thirdly, there’s their cover version of De La Soul’s “The Magic Number”, which I wrote about here (I’ve re-upped the links, cos I’m nice like that).

But for all that, they did have some really nice songs back in the beginning. Not great, not beautiful, just nice.

This is one of them, and since it’s now November 5th, I can justify posting it (Not that I need to justify anything to you people. Nobody forces you to come here):


Embrace – Fireworks

More soon. Maybe better, maybe not.

How Not To Do a Cover Version

Just for shits and giggles, a new (very) occasional thread allowing you to listen to a few covers which fall squarely into the “Fine as a sound check, but why would you do this, and then release it to the general public?” category.

No further explanation is needed.

Here’s the ground-breaking hip-hop original:


De La Soul – The Magic Number

And here’s…..Embrace’s version (yes THAT Embrace):


Embrace – 3 is a Magic Number

I’m cringing behind a cushion. Is it safe to come out yet?

They actually do the three times table in that, don’t they? Jesus fuck that’s awful. Were they pitching to get on Sesame Street, do you reckon?

Let me just make it clear: this was voluntarily released on their Greatest Hits album. That’s how good their actual hits were.

Coldplay have a lot to answer for.

No promises, but hopefully something less ball-squeezingly awful next time.

Reassuring catch-phrase time: More soon.