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platform three

It's Sunday, it's washing day, it's get-that-proposal-finished day, it's procrastination day, and it's also Radiothon week, so I've been hearing a host of guests on the JVG Radio Method doing train-themed songs - Henry Wagons and a cohort from Wagons (gigging next Saturday at the Empress with the Chris Chapple Ensemble), Nick Barker (who covered My Baby Takes the Morning Train, if you can remember the 80's), and the thorougly excellent Git (who are still doing their usual 5pm Sunday slot at the Old Colonial in Brunswick St).

If you've heard more than 5 minutes of 3RRR since Friday, you'll already know why you ought to subscribe (moreso this year, since they have to move offices). And yes, those major prizes are real! I won a PC (yes, of all things, another PC, but that's fine with me ;) a few years ago, bundled with a scanner and printer (neither of which I owned, so they were definitely a good thing). This year, Palaeographics down in Elsternwick (from whom I purchased my Powerbook just a few months ago) are providing a 30GB iPod, and there's the usual slab of beer each week for a year, among the other major prizes.

The fun thing about this year's theme, "get on board", is that it enables us to hear a host of train (or transport)-themed songs. I haven't heard Mystery Train yet, but given that it's the anniversary of Elvis' death (or not) this weekend I'd be surprised if nobody played it. One of the promotions for the major prizes uses The Cramps' Bend Over, I'll Drive in the background. Others use Ed Kuepper's screwed-up (cover of) Steamtrain, or The Triffids' My baby thinks she's a train. What's yer favourite train song? I can think of a few:

  • Mystery Train: the Elvis one. Junior Parker's earlier effort is nice enough, but Elvis is in full Sun Records-era swing, here.

  • Misery Train: Suicide's track from the recent American Supreme starts off with the familiar "Train, Train," but veers off into a wreck of piss-taken synth beat loopage.

  • Black Train: The Gun Club's chugga-chug track from Fire of Love.

  • No Train to Stockholm: I heard this as quiet boy Erlend Oye's nice little contribution to that Lee Hazlewood tribute.

  • Folsom Prison Blues: It's not the only train-themed song Johnny Cash did (I think I heard RRR using Orange Blossom Special behind an ad, for instance), but it's raw and young and special for it.

  • Southend of a Northbound Train: The kind of track that showcases what's good about Willard Grant Conspiracy front-man Robert Fisher's voice.

  • Steamtrain: Ed Kuepper's aforementioned cover that seems to go on forever but in a nice, comfortable way, especially with the mopey morphed backing vocal.

  • Europe Endless: I get a happy feeling every time I hear this track from Kraftwerk's Trans Europe Express.

What about Tom Waits? Well, it's hard not to feel like his song's been a bit over-appreciated. You know how it is...

Also, Guided by Voices' Earthquake Glue is in shops now. Woo! So's a Kenny Everett DVD (my sister tells me a Goodies one is due soon, too).

* 16:04 * music