[11] Martha Wainwright, ‘Bleeding All Over You’

Martha Wainwright

Arthur, as Junior once christened her, is hit-and-miss; capable of lovely stuff, but equally adept at overwrought meanders. Must be a family thing. I liked a couple of thirds of her debut – then this came along and bowled me over. It’s an enviable skill to turn out a gorgeous, heartbreaking song with the word “cowshit” sitting pretty in the middle.

But it’s not all about cowshit. It’s about the unlucky point in the triangle; it’s about the hooks, picked out with every perfect pluck of the guitar; it’s about her generosity. The first day I heard it I listened to it eight times over, and I’m still not tired 30 plays later.

Doing the Jukebox Junior thing on the bus isn’t the ideal way to watch reactions, but this is suited to a blissful, concentrated listen anyway. She’s heard it often enough, and was once seen swaying to it with wavy arms – like a rather-more-clothed Tales Of The Unexpected silhouette – but when I asked if she knew who it was, she replied, “Lykke Li?” No. “Girls Aloud?” No, her name begins with M. “Is it Mummy?”

2008 Top 20 Singles?

Halfway through the year, always looking for delaying tactics and ways to ramp up the tension for the year-end countdown, here’s a minor indicator – the Top 20 Most Played 2008 Singles on my iPod thingy.

[1] Martha Wainwright, ‘Bleeding All Over You’
[2] The Ting Tings, ‘Great DJ’
[3] Laura Marling, ‘Ghosts’
[4] Alphabeat, ‘Fascination’
[5] Fleet Foxes, ‘White Winter Hymnal’
[6] Coldplay, ‘Violet Hill’
[7] The Ting Tings, ‘That’s Not My Name’
[8] Death Cab For Cutie, ‘I Will Possess Your Heart’
[9] MGMT, ‘Time To Pretend’
[10] Lykke Li, ‘I’m Good, I’m Gone’
[11] Coldplay, ‘Viva La Vida’
[12] Santogold, ‘L.E.S. Artistes’
[13] Portishead, ‘Machine Gun’
[14] Vampire Weekend, ‘Oxford Comma’
[15] Laura Marling, ‘Cross Your Fingers’/’Crawled Out Of The Sea’
[16] Hercules And Love Affair, ‘Blind’
[17] The Shortwave Set, ‘No Social’
[18] Goldfrapp, ‘A&E’
[19] H ‘two’ O featuring Platnum, ‘What’s It Gonna Be’
[20] Foals, ‘Red Socks Pugie’

Admit it. You’re astonished.