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coverpic flag US - New York - Full Moon 224 - 12/06/14

Hamish Kilgour
All of It and Nothing
Ba Da Bing Records

Hamish Kilgour is a rock legend out of New Zealand. Hamish (and his brother, David Kilgour) formed the highly influential indie rock outfit The Clean in 1978. The Clean operated from Dunedin, on New Zealand's South Island. You'd better know the 'Dunedin Sound'! The Clean's bass player, Robert Scott, later formed and fronted another legendary Kiwi band: The Bats (from Christchurch, NZ). The Clean is described like this: '...a distinctive and quirky sound that relied heavily on organ melodies and simple, Ramones-style chord progressions' (Wikipedia). True words. Here's another platter from Hamish Kilgour with more of the punky and Velvet Underground-styled looney tunes.

All of It and Nothing (released on September 16) is in fact Hamish Kilgour's first solo album. In the early 90s he moved to New York City and formed The Mad Scene (along with the other core member, guitarist/bassist Lisa Siegel), who released their third studio album, Blip, launched by the Siltbreeze label two years ago (it was produced by Sonic Boom, AKA Peter Kember of the British legends Spacemen 3, and it featured musical contributions from Yo La Tengo's Georgia Hubley and The Ladybug Transistor's Gary Olson). The Clean is an on-and-off going project: their last album, Mister Pop (Arch Hill Recordings/Merge) came in 2009. All the Clean men have (or have had) other projects on the side: David and Hamish once were The Great Unwashed (during the mid-80s, going on parallel to The Clean); Hamish got his Mad Scene, as told, and he's now a solo artist as well. He has also taken part in Richard Davies' The Moles; Brother David has had his Stephen (late 80s), he had the one-off buddy-project Pop Art Toasters (ca. 1994) along with Martin Phillips (of The Chills), and he is still fronting The Heavy Eights, who had their last album, End Times Undone out in August this year (as David Kilgour and The Heavy Eights, or, to be more precise: Heavy 8's). Sorry, we haven't checked out this album. Yet. Maybe next time around; Scott still flies high (by night) with The Bats, and he had The Magick Heads (in the 90s).

Kilgour's 11 tracks is a collection of jangly, twisted and folk-pop-psyched indie rock. It sounds knocked over, but far from knocked out. Check out, say, "Smile", "Get on Up", "Hullabaloo", or "Going Out". Kilgour's songs somehow roam the same neighbourhood as, say Daniel Johnston and Half Japanese. This is music from some different place. You should go there.

A few months back, in September, former The Clean member Peter Gutteridge died. To quote Flying Nun: 'Peter was a Flying Nun original, a founding member of The Clean, The Chills and of course his own brilliant band Snapper'. RIP. Play Snapper's "Buddy" for him.

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