Thursday, July 7, 2011

Jim Jiminy, Jim Jiminy, Jim Jim Jerroo...

Now that pop music has penetrated every sphere of human existence, from supermarkets to call centres, it's not unusual to make new discoveries in strange places.

For example, I Shazam-ed this awesome Michael Jackson cover in a Norwegian branch of Ikea. And the first time I heard Girls Aloud's The Promise was on holiday in Nice, via a mobile phone, after Discopop Directory reader Lisa kindly emailed it to me.

One of my most regular sources of new music in recent years has been video games. Not just Guitar Hero, which fed a particularly nasty Pat Benatar obsession, but more obscure gems like Da Blob and the delightfully bonkers Katamari Damacy. Check out a sample of the latter:

Katamari On The Rocks

Yes, I actually bought the soundtrack for that game. I wouldn't advise listening to it in the car. Or on drugs. Or on drugs in a car. Or at all.

But it doesn't end there... I set off on an ill-advised skater punk spending spree after completing snowboarding classic SSX3; while Grand Theft Auto: Vice City nurtured a distressing attachment to 1980s synth-rock twatfest Owner Of A Lonely Heart.

I suspect that, when you take 20 hours to complete a full-price title, you end up beaten into submission the soundtrack. I'm not proud to admit I've found myself jumping over bollards, humming the Mario theme song when I thought no-one was looking. I've heard it so many times over the last 25 years, it's just part of the personal soundtrack to my life.

To get to the point, the game currently lodged inside my PS3 is platforming gem Little Big Planet and its imaginatively titled sequel, Little Big Planet 2. The game uses a mixture of original score and off-kilter dance tracks by the likes of The Go Team and Battles.

The biggest earworm of the lot is a bowler-hatted bone shaker by the name of My Patch. It's one of several charming tracks to emerge from Manchester musician Jim Noir over the last couple of years... Radio 4 listeners might also recognise it as the theme for panel game The Unbelievable Truth.

Jim Noir - My Patch

Jim's recorded a whole bunch of bananas new music since LBP came out - and he's releasing it independently, via a subscription-based website. Basically, you give him £2.99 a month and he sends you a clutch of exclusive tracks, new material and anything else he has handy. Think of it as a porn site - only there are no nudey bottoms and you won't feel guilty about it.

To reinforce the porn model, Jim is offering a free track to entice you through his paywall. Called One Note World, it has touches of the Super Furry Animals' stoner-rock with luscious Beach Boys' harmonies and a shouty bit with a megaphone. At a push, I'd sum it up as "a voodoo Monkees" (which is coincidentally a great name for a band).

Here's the song - click through to SoundCloud to claim your free MP3.

Jim Noir - One Note World by mrdiscopop

If you want more of that sort of thing, Jim's website / porn domain is

Don't let your mum see what you're up to.

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