Spaceships over Glasgow

Here's the thing. I fucking love Mogwai. I was a little late to catch on, not converting until 'Come On Die Young' came out in 1999, but since then I've been a fierce advocate of theirs. The latest two albums haven't done too much for me, I have to say, but they're one of the most incredible bands you can ever see live. I'll never forget seeing them in November of 2001 at the Brixton Academy, and they played two of their loudest songs (Xmas Steps and Like Herod) back to back, with the latter being accompanied by a really minimal but effective lighting display that just KILLED. And the second time I saw them, it was in Tallahassee. I wrote about it at the time, read here.

Theirs is music to absorb. Music to listen to in the dark. Their album 'Rock Action' is probably the only music I can comfortably read with. Criticising them for not having lyrics is pretty dumb - they pack more emotion into a song like 'You Don't Know Jesus' or 'Mogwai Fear Satan', than many bands can capture in words.

I bring Mogwai up today, because of this page, where you can download a whole CD's worth of session recordings they did for the BBC. Not to be confused with their official release 'Government Commissions', here there are a whole set MORE of songs. Highlights: an early version of 'Waltz for Aidan', before the lovely Mr. Moffatt was even involved with it; an early take of my beloved 'Xmas Steps', here called 'Procedure 4'; their legendary Guns N' Roses cover; and what better way to go out than a twenty minute version of an old Jewish hymn, their epic 'My Father My King'.

[download Mogwai - Government Commissions, Vol 2]


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