widg‧et /ˈwɪdʒɪt/ [wij-it] -noun: Pointless ramblings from the New Forest. Obviously complete & utter Rubbish. Why must I contibute to all this endless talk about me? My self-indulgent knees, spilling themselves all over the internet. Obviously i am Jon and his hair, I AM HIM!

Friday, December 05, 2008

Countdown to Ecstasy! (five)

Teddy Thompson
A Piece of What You Need

Teddy Thompson really is a bit of a miserable bastard.

Maybe it's because he's a ginger. Maybe it's because his last album was a fat, Bernard Matthew's-style, reconstituted turkey drummertwizler, country cowpat of a covers record. But who cares when the end result is as finger-snappingly entertaining & cheekily self-pitying as this. On whinging, foot-stomper, 'What's This?!!' he even bemoans the state of happiness with such down-with-the-kids expressions as 'Oh shit!', 'It's all too good' and the classic, 'but yeah but no but'.

With one musical foot in the past and one tearful eye on his woeful future, the arrangements here harken back to the golden days of rock'n'roll & pop music, but with a healthy dollop of twisty modern twists. 'Jonathan's Book' opens with a horror movie sting, mutates into a piano heavy rocker, is interrupted in the middle by weird atonal mechanical squelches and ends with a rendition of the 'Harribo' jingle. Single, 'In My Arms' features an array of 60s handclaps and an olde, wind-up, cinema-intermission wurlizter solo, all set to a roller-disco themed video. 'Can't Sing Straight' struts along, punctuated by organ stabs, trumpet blasts and features the couplet 'Maybe it's good, maybe it's fine. Maybe I'll learn to walk the line.' Possibly a reference to his (not brilliant) album of country & western standards from last year. Did I mention that it wasn't very good?

The true masterpiece is a torch song for manic depressives, snappily titled 'Turning the Gun on Myself'. Previously released on a gig merchandise stall e.p. a couple of years ago, here it's augmented with some suitably irritating, ironic bird twittering and what sounds like the synthetic ocarina from the Zelda games. With a lyrical structure nicked from a lymeric, a mention of 'Rapper's Delight' (even if it's just to say how annoying it is when you're trying to sleep) and the least convincing exclamation of 'Wee Hee!' on record; grumpiness has never seemed like so much fun.



Blogger AlphIANo said...


Ooh, interesting. I have to admit that Teddy's fallen a little off my radar from the heady days of Martha-groping. In fact, I honestly don't know if I've heard this album or not.

Still, it's good to see reports he's back to his self-effacing best. 'Turning The Gun On Myself' sounds like it should be on a Mogwai album! I shall approach with excitement.


1:26 am


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