I was told tonight that only teenage girls buy records. It didn't mean anything at the time. I didn't think anything of it until I was almost home. Then it started to bother me. The ideal comeback appeared three hours too late, just like always, the cloud of social awkwardness covered my synapses until the taxi ride. The driver was telling me about his home in Iraq, how life is for his family there, how lucky I am. How good I have it, how he knew that I would call him an Iraqi, but how he was actually from Kurdistan. As soon as he said the word "Kurdistan" I knew of the trouble, the pain and suffering that his people have endured. I feel so ridiculous typing that. I have only read of the trouble. I know nothing about it. As if to prove that point, for some reason, my psyche makes the teenage girl comment swell inside my head, it's looming large over the background of emotional small talk. The driver had this speech down to an art in itself. A well practised orator from a thousand late night cab journeys. His opportunity to speak some truth at the general population one fare at a time. His words hung heavy yet they still haven't sunk in. All the things I take for granted. All the things we throw away.

I tried to give him a decent tip but he wouldn't accept it. He told me that no matter where you are or who you are, "people are people and problems are problems" I'm going to carry those words with me for a while. Such a simple, all encompassing statement, yet as he spoke a separate thought crystallized.

Just because teenage girls are the only ones buying records, doesn't mean you have to make records for them.



Lauryn Hill - Neurotic Society (Compulsory Mix) [Single of the Week]

Ok, this is it. I still haven't listened to the Bowie record. I tried my hardest to avoid Daft Punk but them goddamn robots took Tokyo without needing a reboot. For me (disclaimer) This. Is. It.

I'm old enough to remember the first Fugees record. Lauryn Hill entered my world as the best female MC I'd ever heard. Her words made you feel stupid for using the word "female" before MC. Completely unnecessary. Shit, she was better than everyone, saying "female MC" felt like a patriarchal pat on the head. "Get out, I'll parallel park for you Lauren." Sure. So we parked that phrase and we're still waiting for the mainstream media to catch up. Lauryn Hill was the best thing about that record before she went global alone and Wyclef became the Blueprint for Will.I.Am instead of K.R.S. The rest became history. We all read it.

I suspect the story with this song will be the impending jail sentence. Which is a massive shame as this song really is an explosive diatribe against western society. It's an outstanding call to arms, one that really needs a lyric video on youtube. Epic lolz yeah. First one to print a "Free Lauryn" shirt wins yeah.

Dido - End of Night

Hear me out. Please. I would like you to do me just one small favour. I want you to close your eyes, please, close your eyes and imagine being Dido in 2013. She sold 21 million copies of her debut record. Yet. Now she is invisible. She is running down the fruit and veg aisle in Tesco's screaming "I'M A SONGWRITER" and nobody cares. She is throwing tins of beans at the security guards and she doesn't get thrown out. Nobody cares. She fills trolleys full of CDs, runs out the door without paying and still she doesn't get arrested. Nobody cares. As she stumbles into a ditch, delirious and confused, emerging covered in mud. Nobody cares. Running through the centre of town, pushing the trolley in the middle of the road, the traffic slows to her pace and never once complains. Nobody cares. No horns are beeped. She screams, guttural gargling sounds fill the streets and nobody cares. She drags the trolly backwards up a set of stairs, still screaming, up onto a bridge. As she begins throwing the contents onto the busy motorway below, yelling and howling, you realise the trolley is full of copies of "No Angel" that she emptied from the discount bin. You begin to feel sad. Not just because nobody cares what she does, but because you know deep in your heart that no amount of empathy would ever make her music worth listening to. Every broken toy on christmas morning, every flat football, every ripped prom dress, all of the sadness. All of it. Her music would still be bland. Here in 2013, throwing her stolen CDs into traffic, she is invisible. She is invisible, and it's probably for the best.

Primal Scream - It's Alright, It's ok.

I met Bobby Gillespie once. He had a really sweaty hand. I only shook it because he offered it. I suspect he stopped drumming because of the sweaty hands. Although I guess he could've worn gloves. Anyway, I digress. This song isn't alright, and it certainly isn't ok, it's shit.

The problem thought that appears is that this kind of thing is looked up to, it inspires other bands, terrible ideas proliferate as easily as good ideas. "People are people" after all. It's horrible to think that at one point, a young Rev was sat amongst his Makers watching Primal Scream be awful in some video, dreaming one day of being equally terrible.

Courteeners - Van Der Graaff

...and here are the end results of that process. The wikipedia entry for "Derivative". This is essentially a Sigur Ros melody played with the limbs of a dadrock pub band. I'm sure it feels stupendously poignant for people too stupid to realise that it is Hoppipolla in a club style. Enjoy it, who am I to try and stop your fun, although I shall repeat the words he sings in the song. "We're splitting up like the A57".

Lund Quartet - Sequoia

Now, this may not be the best song in the world, but doesn't it feel amazing in comparison? Hit play on this and just allow some thoughts for yourself. Purge yourself of all the feelings that have been inspired. Let it all go and then get on with your life. Enjoy your chain store coffee, your monochrome sources of information, your identikit furniture. Forget everything that I have said. Be annoyed that I haven't offered any biographical information about any of the artists. Feel preached at and perturbed as you navigate to a search engine and find the information in an instant. Then let it all go. Get stuck in a revolving door. Watch the One show. Whatever you need to get by. Who am I to try and stop you. Enjoy your life. Do what you like. Throw things away. Don't concentrate on anything. Do everything at once. Take it for granted. Who am I to try and stop you.


If you'd like your single reviewed on a future edition of 'Singles of the Week', or have any tips for us, please email us. Please include a link to something embeddable (youtube video/Soundcloud/Bandcamp etc) and put the release date within the body of the email. Thank you x


Wil Cook is a fan of music. He is the Music Editor of The 405 and he cannot hide his severe dislike for writing in third person anymore. Leave your hate mail in the comments section.