30 April 2010

Nylon could do their research.

I had forgotten about this Nylon video. it was supposed to be an advert for last winter's inaugural Nylon Winter Music tour but I noticed all the video clips were insanely old. the 'cake dog' was from their first trip to Japan, celebrating someone's birthday (errr...Rob's?) and chronicled by Edd on a MySpace blog. (when they still posted regular blog updates. ah, those were the days.)

I don't even think Ed Mac owns any of those shirts anymore. well, if he does, they're probably falling apart from perspiration or have been ripped to shreds by overuse!

23 April 2010

baby, it's you...sha la la la la la la...

the Manchester Warehouse Project site is down and under construction for 2010 (understandably). but they DELETED all the 2009 events! grrrr...I needed to know the 13 November line-up for an article about Prins Thomas on the Roskilde blog. so I was digging around the Web for SOMETHING about the evening and found this instead. I wholeheartedly agree with the author Piran that "I like to think all great bands have the Beatles 'Live at the BBC' in their collection. Don’t correct me." unfortunately (I forget where I read / heard it) but Ed Mac said at one point that he didn't think the Beatles were that important to him, and my heart sank :/

this is weird to me on several levels, the weirdest being that 'Baby It's You' (the Beatles version, not the Shirelles version) was *the* song of me and my exbf. another level is that I recognise that shirt and vest (and no, I'm not a stalker). good god Edd Gibson without a beard looks so friggin' young! the video on YouTube has funny comment of "love ed's voiceee =) and love watching his back too haha" as well.

note: good god there are a lot of covers of 'Paris' on YouTube! once I find a decent one, I will post it here...

22 April 2010

Yoko Ono

admittedly, I've been on an interview drought for a while. it isn't from lack of trying. I've been trying to go for in person interviews, especially when it comes to interviewing British bands, b/c I'm worried I won't be able to understand something and can't quickly jump in for a clarification. (I'd love to say I have fully sussed English accents and understand everything an English musician says, but if the 18 hours to transcribe my marathon interview with FFires last year was any indication, I still have a ways to go.) and it's just so much more personal when you're there in the same room with them, being able to gauge their interest / disinterest by their body language.

however, I'm not complaining about something that happened to me last week.

in all the time I have been writing about music, I never thought I'd be asked to interview Yoko Ono.

apologies for it being a bit wooden, but that's what happens when you don't interview people in person...

my interview with Yoko Ono for PW

FYI I have updated all the important pages over at my Web site:

gigs list

interviews list

albums and EPs reviewed

19 April 2010

losing my religion

note: volcano tantrum post on the way later this week.

I'm embarrassed to say I'm behind on the times regarding Patrick Wolf's videos. I probably forgot to look up his new ones (now old) after seeing a big feathered outfit he'd lined up for one of the songs off 'the Bachelor' and thought, meh.

I feel terrible that I've missed the one for 'Damaris' especially b/c OMG, this is quite the story:

Although Wolf handled all the arrangements on previous albums, this time he called upon Fiona Brice to orchestrate tracks like "Theseus" and "Damaris." The latter song was inspired by a visit to a graveyard in Brede, a southern English town where most of Wolf's ancestors are buried: "There are about 80 graves there from my family, and in the corner, under the shade of a tree, there was this small wooden cross with 'Damaris' on it."

Inquiring at the church, Wolf was given a leaflet recounting its history, including the centuries-old story of Damaris' ill-fated love affair with a vicar's son. When the holy man forbade his son to marry a Gypsy girl, Damaris took her own life and assumed her quiet place in local history.

"It could have been really easy to write a song where I was telling that story in some kind of mad Bob Dylan narrative — well, not easy, but that would have been the most obvious choice," says Wolf. "But it struck such a chord in me, for anyone who has ended a relationship and lost contact with something they really cherished, so I wrote it from that point of view emotionally. And that whole battle of the church versus a true love that sees past religion and race and creed."

Damaris might well have been pleased: The song is unabashedly passionate, especially on the chorus in which her bereaved lover intones, "God damned Damaris."

"A lot of people who heard it in the States are like, 'Why is it God damn Damaris?', which I guess is quite a rude thing to say in America," notes a bemused Wolf. "But it's 'God damned Damaris. It's quite hard to sing, actually, God damned."

you can read more at the Colorado Springs Independent. I've loved this song since the first time I heard it, but even more so now that I know the story behind it. wow. I didn't think it was possible to love Patrick any more...but there you go. and it's a beautiful video, showing off Patrick Wolf as the Beautiful Creature he is. I consider myself quite lucky having seen him live 3 times.

16 April 2010

ok, so a couple days ago the touring bassist/percussionist of Friendly Fires, Rob Lee, posted a "Shreds" video on YouTube for the band's one performance on Later with Jools Holland. I've never seen one of these "Shreds" videos before so really didn't understand the concept until I read Rob's explanation. here is a paraphrase of his description of the video:


Explanation for those who are unfamiliar with the Shreds concept: This is a Shreds video. The audio on this video is "fake". The original audio has been removed, and a new, intentionally bad soundtrack has been put in its place. As far as I know, the Shreds thing was started by StSanders, aka Santeri Ojala. You can find out more about him at http://www.stsanders.com...

The general concept will either amuse you, or it won't (either's fine, although personally, I can't imagine not finding any of this stuff funny). You might even take offence (I can't help you there). Laughing at a Shreds video (or making one) doesn't mean you are mocking the original artist. For example, in this case, I'm a Friendly Fires fan - in fact, I'm the guy playing the bass guitar and percussion in this video. Friendly Fires are three friends of mine who made a record and invited me to tour the world with them - Shreds videos have been a tour entertainment staple for us over the last few years. This Friendly Fires Shreds video comes fully approved by Friendly Fires themselves (unless they've changed their minds since I showed it to them the other day).

Yaseen Clarke did Ed Macfarlane's vocals and Jack Savidge's vocals; I did everything else.

Thanks for reading,


I particularly LOLed at 2.50, when Ed Mac is frantically pressing buttons and beeping horns emanate from his Korg. this has to be said, the timing throughout for the instrumentation is impeccable. well done Rob. there's really no wonder why he was involuntarily LOLing to himself last month on Twitter:

I started work on a "Friendly Fires Shreds" video today. I've only done the hi-hats so far, but I'm already LOLing involuntarily.
4:08 PM Mar 16th via web

one wonders what other mischief these boys get up to when they're touring...?

I haven't decided for sure if this FFires Friday amusement thing is going to be a permanent thing but in the meantime, enjoy it while it lasts!

13 April 2010

this time baby, I'll be...bulletproof!

I've found a lot of solace singing to this particular La Roux song. it's sung with as much vitriol that can come out of a woman who's been jilted. TBH there just aren't enough songs out there today that don't sound all jokey when a woman is saying, "look, I loved you once and I may have cried over you at one point. but damn it, I'm not going to let you hurt me anymore. I'm going to hold my head up high and I WILL get over you."

at some points this song makes me cry b/c golly gee whiz, I wish I could have said something similar to someone who was important to me in a past life.


been there, done that, messed around,
I'm having fun don't put me down
I'll never let you
sweep me off my feet.

I won't let you in again,
the messages I've tried to send,
my information's just not going in.

burning bridges shore to shore,
I'll break away from something more
I'm not turned on to love
until it's cheap.

been there done that messed around
I'm having fun don't put me down,
I'll never let you
sweep me off my feet.

This time baby I'll be bulletproof,
This time baby I'll be bulletproof.

I won't let you turn around
And tell me now I'm much too proud
to walk away from something
when it's dead.

do do do your dirty words
come out to play when you are hurt?
there's certain things
that should be left unsaid.

tick tick tick tick on the watch
and life's too short for me to stop
oh baby, your time is running out.

I won't let you turn around
and tell me now I'm much too proud
all you do
is fill me up with doubt.

this time baby I'll be bulletproof.

ignore the '80s stylising in the video, it's all a bit much.

09 April 2010

Friday amusements / Philly, here I come...

I was reminded by a friend how great this "What's In My Bag?" from Ameoba Records was... I Gibson! ::mork mork mork::


it seems appropriate to segue from FFires to their favourite American city, Philadelphia, b/c I have just booked my coach and hotel room to go up to the city of brotherly love to see my latest fave band du jour, Two Door Cinema Club.


only problem is...I've got another 5 weeks! in 3 weeks I'm seeing them open for Phoenix at Constitution Hall so not all is lost.

::bounce bounce::

08 April 2010

this week's Roundtable (08/04)

if it seems like I haven't posted about Roundtable in a while, you're right. I refused to listen to the 25 March edition for reasons previously discussed. and I'm not sure what happened on April Fool's Day, I must have forgot. but I'm back! (even though I could say something cruel about Mathew Horne. he's lucky that it's UNlikely that a Foals track will be up for review.)

Thursday sees Mat Horne, Bernard Butler and the NME's Krissi Murrison join Thursday's Roundtable

1. Gorillaz feat. Gruff Rhys and De La Soul - 'Superfast Jellyfish' - this is so cartoony. which I suppose is appropriate for a virtual band like Gorillaz?

2. the Cheek - 'Just One Night' - good starting groove. it almost sounds a bit Placebo-y. not seeing the White Lies similarity pointed out by Mat Horne.

3. Lunar Youth -'Nighttime Diamond' - s'alright. interesting note from Kristi's coworker saying they're like Delphic but with nicer clothes.

4. Karen Elson - 'The Ghost That Walks' - mmmm...meh. disaffected female voices do nothing for me. this is Jack White's wife as well, FYI.

5. LCD Soundsystem - 'Drunk Girls' - the winner - this is all right...not immediately catchy though. it's funny, now that I've listened to a LOT of dance music in the last year, I feel kind of a snob about vocals (I still want someone who can sing a melody and be spot on with it) and instrumentation (I say, bring it) - I want everything to be lush as hell :) (I have someone I can blame for that, haha)

however, despite this, the thought of seeing James Murphy live at Roskilde is making me shake. (if you were wondering, the thought of being in close proximity of John Paul Jones on the Orange Stage is making me weak in the knees.)

6. Villa Nah - 'Running On' - it's all right.

7. MGMT's album 'Congratulations' including 'Brian Eno' - I actually really liked the album when I reviewed it, even though I was primed to pan it b/c everyone in the media has slagged them off for creating an album with no singles. read my review over at There Goes the Fear.

I was in near tears when I heard all three panelists saying they liked this track. it may have been an unpopular move for popular music but MGMT deserves serious kudos for the album they've made. it's not predictable and they were themselves making it. what could be better?