This post is subtitled “Tales Of A Reluctant Self-Promoter”.
Last week I received an email from an English chap called Darren Riley. He’s a musician who:
a) records his music as Ballard;
b) plays and sings everything on his records; and
c) is uncomfortable peddling his musical wares.
The email I received from Darren was possibly the least assertive email I’ve ever received from a musician. Darren was almost apologetic as he asked me to listen to his album, Little Rockets, and perhaps, maybe, if it’s not too much trouble, let people know about it on my blog. I told Darren that his email was refreshingly different, as the emails I usually get from bands are full of unrealistic hyperbole and exclamation marks.
It looks like Darren had to endure the discomfort of having to email other bloggers, because my blogging brethren Steve Smiles, Powerpopulist, and Ice Cream Man (hi, chaps!) have already posted Little Rockets (or bits of it) on their respective blogs (see links).
As for Darren’s album, I was going to do one of my standard track-by-track commentaries, but in the spirit of how the album was made – i.e., low-fi, low-key, and deliberately non-polished – I won’t do the fine-tooth-comb thing, analysing it and picking it to bits, mulling over all the tiny imperfections.
(I was going to put the word “minutiae” somewhere in that previous sentence, but I didn’t think you’d want to read a blog that had a word as pretentious as “minutiae” in it. Although I think it’s a perfectly good word, I don’t think it has any place in a power pop blog.)
Instead, I’ll just present you with the album and let you know that my three favourite songs on it are 3, 5, and 6: