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3:AM Top 5: Dan Rhodes

Dan Rhodes, author of the brilliant Timoleon Vieta Come Home, has no new product to plug. His recently-launched website indicates, however, that “sources close to the author have revealed that he is working hard on a new book, which he is hoping to finish some time this year. It will, they say, be typically short, and similar in some ways to his previous work, while being different in others. As always with Rhodes’ writing, it is anticipated that some folks will get it and other folks won’t. Expect a release some time in 2007″. In the meantime, Dan is listening to:

1. “The Theme from Voltes V” — Horie Mitsuko & Koorogi ’73: “My wife grew up loving this anime sci-fi action soap. I’ve never seen it, but I have seen a photo of her wearing a Voltes V helmet. The theme tune is one of the finest pieces of music ever composed. ‘Soldiers boldly unite, fight, fight for peace/Hand in hand, like eagles though the breeze’. Find it in various languages here.”

2. “Donkey Island” — Euros Childs: “Never mind Pink Floyd, the most heart warming rock ‘n’ roll reunion news of last year was that Euros Childs and John Lawrence were playing together again. Euros’s solo album, Chops, has a revolting cover and is great. It’s like a collection of Gorky’s Zygotic Mynci B-sides. Aficionados will realise that I mean that as a high compliment. This song is about an island where donkeys live, love and swim in the sea.”

3. “Now Those Days Are Gone” — Bucks Fizz: “The best thing I saw at last year’s Edinburgh Festival was Jonny Woo’s A Night Of 1000 Jay Astons, a lip-synched drag musical about the black sheep of Bucks Fizz. I went three times and live in hope of a revival because thrice just wasn’t enough. I’ve been humming Fizz numbers ever since, and this one is the best.”

4. “Only Lonely” — S.H.E.: “I was exploring Chinese pop on a KLM jukebox, and found this ace Taiwanese girl trio. They were discovered on the magnificently-titled talent show Cruel Stage, and according to the Internet, ‘The three girls lived in a small dormitory together for a few months and passed on flus and boredom to each other. Sometimes they would cry under their blankets because they were extremely homesick. When they were bored, they opened the window, ate junk food, and watched the stars’. It’s one of the girls doing the rap, in her unusually deep voice. This song has the best ending in pop — it’s really raised the bar. Unless you’re in Taiwan it’s hard to find but you can sneak a listen here.”

5. “Native New Yorker” — Odyssey: “I love melancholy disco music, and how much more melancholy could this disco song be? None — none more melancholy.”

(Pic: Dan Rhodes at 3:AM‘s 2003 Xmas Bash.)

First posted: Thursday, February 23rd, 2006.

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