The Best Music Recommender in the World. P & Q.

This week I wanted albums by bands or artists beginning with P or, for triple points, Q.

Have you ever seen Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory? Of course you have. Now, do you remember the character Mr Slugworth? He is the film’s villain, offering Charlie a big sack of cash for one of Wonka’s everlasting gobstoppers. Of course the truth is that he isn’t a villain. He works for Wonka. The offer of money is a test. It’s a trap.

Guess what people. I only went and Slugworthed the flipping lot of you.

This competition was never about points. It was supposed to be about the music, man. I offered those triple points the way Mr Slugworth offered that envelope of used tenners. Not to help you, but to test you. I apologise for the subterfuge but the person crowned the  Best Music Recommender in the World should be pure of heart. Their motives should only be to recommend great music. Their reward should be the happiness of others. Not points.

I’m not angry with the people who chased the points with a Q choice, but I am a little disappointed. Oh, you’ll get your triple points. Don’t worry about that. But the Charlie Buckets of this competition, who picked Ps – which for the record was Plashing Vole, Georgia Boon, Graham Cox, Neal, Desmond, Chris Bissette, Sleepy, Graeme, Fat Roland, Rebecca Holland, Sean Rhodes and Hannah Hunt – will get QUADRUPLE POINTS for thinking with their hearts and putting the music first.

I know, I know, I’m history’s greatest monster. Tell it to your chocolate factory, mate.

Anyway… the points…

  • Matt Tuckey recommended Q-Tip…

    …but didn’t specify an album. If he had done, he would have scored far more than three points but, as I said, he didn’t.

  • Donna Morris recommended Doing It My Way by Ray Quinn…

    …and, no offence like, but what. were. you. thinking? His version of Ain’t That a Kick in the Head? is so bad I had to grind a copy of Dean Martin’s 1957 classic Pretty Baby into dust and inject it directly into my veins to bring my levels of cool up to an acceptable standard.

    However, Donna did provide an anecdote with her recommendation: “Fun fact his wife once came into the cd shop we worked in and purchased all his albums we had in stock as he was performing in the pantomime across the road and wanted to sign and sell them to loyal fans! 99p or 6 for a fiver!” and you know that is getting some bonus points. So, two points for the album, ten for the anecdote, times three equals thirty six points.

  • Adrian Slatcher recommended Silent Movie by Quiet Village…

    …which, for those of you who haven’t heard it, sounds like a Groove Armada song that somebody has accidentally left out in the rain. Nine points.

  • Daniel Carpenter recommended Rated R by Queens of the Stone Age…

    …and a couple of people were a bit sad he beat them to it but I couldn’t tell you why. It’s an album that is so turgid that you can practically hear Chris Moyles nodding along to it, muttering yeah, proper music. It’s the sound of stonewashed denim making love to itself. It’s nasty. Twelve points.

  • Desmond recommended Variations sur la meme t’aime by Vanessa Paradis…

    …which despite (or maybe because of) the involvement of Serge Gainsbourg sounds a lot like that Alannah Myles song, Black Velvet, played on a loop. I wasn’t a fan. It is a P though, so five times four equals twenty points.

  • George Sandison recommended If You Knew Suzi… by Suzi Quatro…

    …and I suspect that as he reads that it only got him eighteen points he will be furious with himself for not sticking with his P choice, which was Pet Shop Boys (who, by the way, I am very much a fan of). He’ll probably be a bit cross with me, what with me orchestrating this elaborate ruse and everything, but I don’t really mind. It’s water off a duck’s back, pal.

  • Dave Hartley recommended Knee Deep in the North Sea by Portico Quartet…

    …stating he was unsure whether it was a P or a Q and he would take the points for whichever it was. Well, Dave, I reckon it’s both. And, as you were prepared to take the single points you were going to get, I am happy that you are pure of heart and I’m going to give you triple and a half points! As for the album, I didn’t care for it. Soz. Twenty four and a half points. Unless my maths is out. Let me know if it is.

  • Graham Cox recommended Surfing on Sine Waves by Polygon Window…

    …which I hadn’t heard before, so I researched it and it turns out it is an Aphex Twin side project. It was ranked the 26th best album of the 90s by Fact and the 26th best IDM album of all time by Pitchfork. It was alright, I suppose. Eight times four equals thirty two points.

  • Mark Reid recommended Swamp Tech by Quintron and Miss Pussycat…

    …which, I imagine, sounds better live in a New Orleans club than on record. I admired it’s grubbiness, and the whole homemade chaos thing they have going on is great, but you reach a certain age and your appetite for listening to people shout “Look at my ass! Look at my ass! Look at my ass! I’m a squirrel!” lessens. I wish it didn’t, but it does. And so, because I am so very old, I can only award it twenty seven points.

  • Mat Pringle recommended Quannum Spectrum by Quannum Projects…

    …which I really wanted to love but didn’t. Too many of the songs fell into the Jurassic 5 template of ‘It’s the 1-RHYME / 1-2 1-RHYME / 1-2-3, 1-RHYME 1-2- RHYME’ for my taste. That probably doesn’t make sense written down. Soz. Thirty points.

  • Rebecca Holland recommended Up for a bit with… The Pastels…

    …and can I just say, that guy can not sing at all. I know this was the post-punk 1980s, where anyone with a guitar could start a band, but blimey. Just blimey. Forty four points.

  • Jim Peeeeeeeee recommended Featuring Birds by Quasi…

    …who sound a bit like if Grandaddy took, I want to say Prozac but I’m not a pharmacist, I don’t know, whatever drug makes you happy. Not ecstasy happy. Just happy enough to get through the day. You know, like when New Order made Republic or something like that. The same, but different. Does that make sense? No? Fine. Where was I? I quite liked the album. Thirty six points.

  • Em recommended The Works by Queen…

    …which caused me to have a small panic attack because, unfamiliar with their album titles, I thought it was some career spanning box set of everything they have ever recorded. I don’t have that sort of time. Plus, I’m not a huge Queen fan. In fact, this was the first time I have ever listened to a Queen album. How was it? It was ok. I still maintain that Brian May is the worst talented guitarist I have ever heard, and Man on the Prowl is a truly truly awful song, but I didn’t hate every minute of it. Some bits were fine. One or two bits were actually pretty good. Am I saying I like Queen? No. That would be crazy talk. But maybe there is a time and a place for everything, yeah? In this case, the place would be the Flash Gordon soundtrack, not my kitchen, but still, thirty nine points.

  • Slugger recommended Continents were made to sink by Quiet Arrows…
    …who sounded, to me, a bit like (but, sorry, not as good as) Elliot Smith. This is probably one of the albums that would have scored better if I had had the time to give it another listen or two but these days (31 albums this week) that is increasingly impossible. Sorry etc. Forty two points.
  • Chris Bissette recommended I Disagree by Poppy…

    …which was something of a change of pace for him, I think you’ll agree. There is something interesting going on here, songs switch genres wildly yet seamlessly but I liked bits of it more than the whole. It also reminded me a little bit of Lolly (whose debut single Viva La Radio was unfairly ignored by the music press despite being an absolute solid gold classic banger for the ages) which was nice. Sixty points.

  • Tom. recommended Look Around the Corner by Quantic and Alice Russell…

    …and as it started I thought, hello, this is a bit Minnie Riperton and I like it, do we have a winner here? Unfortunately it runs out of steam a bit. The Alice Russell stuff is great but the instrumentals left me cold and in the end the whole thing outstays its welcome. So only the forty eight points.

  • Dan recommended All Hail the Queen by Queen Latifah…

    …an album that about half of has aged really well and half not so much. Fifty one points.

  • James Park recommended Quadron by Quadron…

    …and I remember liking it when I listened to it but it hasn’t stuck with me the way other albums have. I’m listening to too many albums each week now, I guess. Still, fifty four points on your first attempt is nothing to be sneezed at, I don’t think.

  • Nick Rayney recommended The Unseen by Quasimoto…

    …which I liked, but I’m kind of rushing now to get this finished tonight, so… fifty seven points.

  • subfuscus recommended Brute by Fatima Al Qadiri…

    …also very good, sorry, really rushing now, I haven’t had my tea yet or anything. Sixty points.

  • Graeme recommended Together We’re Heavy by Polyphonic Spree…

    …and would have scored more points if he hadn’t suggested it to somebody who believes, like fundamentally believes, that The Fragile Army is the best Polyphonic Spree album. It is. It just is. But have eighty four points anyway.

  • Fat Roland recommended Screamadelica by Primal Scream…

    …after seeing me tweet something positive about Primal Scream. I know! The nerve! He changed his mind from Very by Pet Shop Boys too! (Introspective was where the big points were btw). I do love Screamadelica though so he gets eighty eight points. Oh, and minus one hundred points for being a total cheating cheater who cheats.

  • Sean Rhodes recommended Fear of a Black Planet by Public Enemy…

    …which, yes, I know, is one of the most important records of all time but it only gets ninety two points because (whisper it) I don’t love it quite as much as everyone else.

  • William Mallin recommended Quinteto Ternura by Quinteto Ternura…

    …and I enjoyed it very much, so it gets a solid seventy two points.

  • Plashing Vole recommended Checkmate Savage by Phantom Band…

    …which, when I came to read my scrawled handwriting, I thought was Checkmate Sausage by Phantom Bird, and just imagine how good that would be, eh? The actual album was good too, especially the almost-nine-minutes swoop of Island. It gets one hundred points. (Jesus Christ the points have got a bit out of hand this week, haven’t they?)

  • Neal picked Crooked Rain, Crooked Rain by Pavement…

    …which seems to be everyone’s second favourite Pavement album, which is silly, because it is obviously their best. One hundred and four points. “Stone Temple Pilots, are elegant bachelors…

  • Picky Bastards recommended Everything’s Fine by Jean Grae and Quelle Chris…

    …They come up with the goods, don’t they, those Picky Bastards? I say ‘they’ but I think it’s Fran doing the recommending. Maybe it isn’t. Who knows, eh? It’s very mysterious. Whoever it is, they get eighty one points.

  • Sleepy recommended Boat by Pip Blom…

    …which I loved, so, you know, one hundred and twelve points.

  • Georgia Boon recommended There Is No-one What Will Take Care of You by Palace Brothers…

    …after not doing superbly with a Will Oldham album last week, Boon doubled down and went for Will Oldham again. DOUBLE OLDHAM. Of course, this is a much better album. Much better. Much much better. One hundred and sixteen points. It’s worth that for Long Before alone.

  • jummo70 recommended Likewise by Frances Quinlan…

    …which was the highest scoring Q. One of the best albums so far this year, I think. Lovely stuff. Only gets ninety points though, because of that Q.

  • Hannah Hunt recommended The Magic Position by Patrick Wolf…

    …now, as I say, I don’t get time to listen to your recommendations more than once any more. I had to listen to thirty one albums this week. That’s a lot of music. However, as soon as this one finished I put it on again, almost without thinking, you might say instinctively. I wanted more. And so, it gets one hundred and twenty four points.

So that’s that. Let’s hope this triple points thing hasn’t made a complete fucking mockery of the leaderboard, eh? Oh crap. What have I done?