Easy Listening


The new edition of Late Night Tales journeys to Scandinavia to invite Norwegian duo Röyksopp to delve through their record collection. Their Late Night Tales mix is eclectic, diverse and wonderful. Sliding from light folk to widescreen ambience to experimental rock to prog-pop (seasoned with the occasional guilty pleasure); it’s all in the spirit of the night. Following the exclusive introduction track 'Daddy's Groove', Rare Bird's beautiful 1975 B-side'Passing Through' then leads into Australian supergroup Little River Band. The first of several delicate folk moments, it's joined by the ever soulful John Martyn. There's a strong representation of alternative European sounds. Röyksopp mine deep and wide to unearth the rare and unusual German psych-pop of Richard Schneider Jnr (featuring none other than Can's Jaki Leibezeit on drums), France's unique F.R. David and the new age melodies of Switzerland's Andreas Vollenweider - it's pop Jim, but not as we know it. There are also the more familiar names of XTCand Thomas Dolby, as well as Röyksopp's exclusive cover of Depeche Mode's 'Ice Machine' and brand new track opening Daddys Groove. The music draws to a close with goth-dream-pop 4ADfounders The Mortal Coil's Emmylou Harris cover 'Till I Can Gain Control Again'; blending into a cinematic moment from German electronic avant-garde band Popol Vuh, contributing to the soundtrack of Werner Herzog's 1972 movie Aguirre, the Wrath of God. The second part of theBenedict Cumberbatch narrated story 'Flat of Angles' closes time on this coolly individual edition ofLate Night Tales.

Metronomy, the effective alias of the talented Joseph Mount, have thus far released three albums, starting with the jagged electro manoeuvres of their debut ‘Pip Paine (Pay The £5000 You Owe)’, through to their two albums on Because, ‘Nights Out’, where Mount first sang, and last year’s brilliant Mercury-nominated ‘The English Riviera’. As a pop group, Metronomy that are more Four Tet than Fab Four, though with a sense of adventure that would’ve made the Fabs proud. Their outing under the Late Night Tales banner journeys through the inspirations of the bands’ ever moving sound – along with a few surprises. Mount’s old favourite Autechre is present and correct, but then so are Kate and Anna McGarrigle and the Sun Ra of hip hop Sa-Ra Creative Partners. Joining Sa-Ra on the hip hop front, we’ve got Tweet’s ace ‘Drunk’ from her Hummingbird album alongside OutKast ‘Prototype’, spiced with some Doctor Octagon. For pure pop, they don’t come more refined than Alan Parson’s ‘Eye In The Sky’, who is buffeted by outbreaks of unsettling weirdness, among them the sadly departed Mick Karn’s supple bass figurines on ‘Weather The Windmill’ or Tonto’s Expanding Head Band – the guys that brought the funk to synthesizers with Stevie Wonder – and ‘Cybernaut’. And just when you think you’ve got it figured, Pete Drake arrives with his 1964 pedal steel novelty hit ‘Forever’. This is a maze rather than a journey. Naturally enough, there is the Late Night Tales special with a sparkling Metronomy rendition of Jean-Michel Jarre’s ‘Hypnose’. We’ve always had a soft spot for Devon and her cobbled street delights, but seen through the prism of Joseph Mount, it takes on a new hue that makes Brigitte Bardot and that other, lesser, Riviera seem somehow pallid. To paraphrase Buzzcocks: another music in a different riviera.