One of the enduring gifts that an obsession with skateboarding has given me was an exposure to the widest spectrum of music imaginable. From the past to the present, from classics right to the back of the crate rarities. In the first of what we hope to make an ongoing series musical supervision will be looking at the best tracks used in skateboard videos, parts, web clips etc. over the previous week.
Our first track appeared in the excellent Relic Reel out of San Francisco and is Phyllis Dillon’s recording of the Fontella Bass hit “leave it in the hands of love”. It marks a move towards the soulful end of the spectrum for a singer primarily known for a more rocksteady sound and in fact helped to define that genre. This is a rather lovely little cut and while it may not be indicative of the rest of her catalog she is defiantly worth exploring further.
Next up is Kaleidoscope by British band The Boo Radleys, which added a backdrop of shoe-gazing magnificence the Kevin Lowerys section from last years 11th hour, which was just released online this week. I must confess to never having been a particular fan of the band, due in part to the ubiquitous and annoying as it is catchy Wake up Boo, but upon giving their 1993 album Giant Steps a few more spins I have to say that it is a magnificent selection of songs, and one that I only wish I had spent more time listening to over the years.
Rounding us off we have a classic MF Doom cut in the form of Calamus root which features on the Special Herbs box set, which comes highly recommended, and is included here due to its featuring in Philadelphia scene video Cresbalm. The repetitive stand up bass and organ lines give this track a daydream like quality, and then just when you are rolling in the middle of the grove the beat will drop out, or snippets of soulful samples will jump into the mix.