the sun is shit.

May 31, 2007

Having a go at the sun is a bit like shooting dead fish in an dry barrell, but today they set themselves a new standard of respect with the front page of their website.

First, there’s a story about a butterfly that landed on the head of mother of missing child, Madeline McCann. I’m not going to go there, but it’s a nice gentle touch for a newspaper that spends its hours making a load of stuff up, trying to indoctrinate everyone in the country into hating certain segments of society and trying to slate everything and everyone 24/7.

But the bit that shows truly what the sun is about is the left hand side of the screen.

As everyone in this country is no doubt aware, Big Brother has returned to Channel Four in England. The makers, deciding to start with an all-female house, have set a new agenda for reality television. What will these females say about feminity and modern Britain? What impact will it have on the way women are perceived?

Well, the sun has chosen to focus on the important issues of the show, rather than focus on the day’s news. As well you can gague from the headline…

the sun is shit

That says it all. But it’s most definitely not all. What headline news stories do the sun highlight as imperative to today’s news?

– EMILY – “I’d do naked film” (sic)
– CHANELLE – shows undies
– SHABS – “I speak Spanish”

For fuck’s sake. As I said, why have a go at them?

I just wanted to.

J.

It’s funny how people trigger memories, things forgotten and left in your nogin. They sit there, just waiting to be remembered and blared into your headspace, whenever you should begin to recall them.

One I’ve recently had is a song from a band I don’t even really know, or own any of their albums – Elbow. They crafted four minutes and forty-eight seconds of absolute beauty back in… (just go look it up… patience…) 2001 with a song called ‘Scattered Black and Whites‘. It appeared as the closing track on ‘Asleep in the Back‘, which had a lead single, ‘Any Day Now‘, which I’m sure a few people remember.

Anyway, this song is absolutely gorgeous. It is an absolute triumph of colour and timbre to suit a lyric. Beautiful. The ‘scattered’ feeling is immediately conveyed from the brushed drumming, but I think it’s the piano in the song that makes me want to cry. Or at least curl up and fluff the pillow.

Now, I don’t think I can store mp3s on here, but I did a search on elbo.ws and someone posted this song on their blog just 31 hours ago. Amazing. Someone’s thinking of the same song! To download the song, go to this blog here…. 

People and memories triggering reactions, brain processes that can spark off memories of the past; assessment, nostalgia.

A tool for this is Facebook. It’s so popular nowadays, it’s almost unreal. Everyday a different person from the past comes back into your life. Some things great, some things shit, but so’s day-to-day life. ‘Confirm, deny or reject‘ – the choice is yours.

Now a lot of people bang on about how they don’t want anyone seeing ugly pictures of them online, or let anyone ‘iStalk’ them, bosses etc. etc. etc. I pretty much allow everyone to be my friend; if someone puts up a horrible picture of me and tags it for the world to see (insert pic here), well, then I guess it’s my fault for posing in the first place. It’s me. It’s actually what you look like.

I don’t know, I shouldn’t slate people just for thinking it’s rubbish or imposing. It probably is both those things. Each unto their own. But if you want to, just do it. What the fuck does it matter anyway?

In years to come, I’m sure that there’ll be stuff about you on there anyway, only this time, you won’t get to control the flow of information.

J.

burn my shadow.

May 29, 2007

Actually quite excited this lunchtime; there’s a new UNKLE album coming out that I completely wasn’t aware of. I don’t think it’s out for a while, but the first video from it is quite nicely weird and features some guy from ER. Once you see the clock, you almost have to listen to the end of the song; good idea from the marketing peeps…

J.

UNKLE – Burn My Shadow

busy…

May 22, 2007

Not much to write, but I wanna make sure I post, so here’s two little things (refreshed!)…

it all came down to this.                           life through txt.

I like these anyway. The first was written almost exactly a year ago following my first day at my current workplace, a breast cancer charity.

The second is a collection of genuine text messages, all saved to my phone during my time at university. There are some, shall we say, more personal ones that I’ve left out due to respect to people and I’ve referred to people as vaguely as I can, for example, in pseudonyms.

J.

(if you bother to read, happy birthday Ange!)

the cutty sark.

May 21, 2007

cuttysark.jpgThis is really sad. I remember the old man taking me to the Cutty Sark as a child with the family.

Such a shame. If some prat did start this deliberately (they’re saying they saw people in the area before on CCTV) they’re an absolute 100% wanker.

Maybe give them a fiver. Help them out.

J.

Carlos DIT seems Carlos D from Interpol is not just happy being in a phenomenal band; he also sees himself as a film composer!

After stumbling across this news item from Pitchfork (complete with nice picture of him and his dog – how cute is that?! – from the website), I’ve found that his aspirations are great – he wants to make magical music for those movies!

His website, as Pitchfork says, is bizzare. What it seems he’s done is compose some scores, then add them onto movies/TV already made. I wanted to embed these, but you’ll have to view them on his website…

http://www.carlosdengler.com

 

Planet of the Apes is even in there! Most of it is nicely ambient.

What I haven’t watched yet but will as soon as I can is the short film online. Not the promo video, this is a short film he scored called Golgotha. I’ll see it over the weekend hopefully.

It’s interesting finding out his kit though (his bio is brilliant), and seeing what he does when he’s not posing, smoking into a microphone and rocking a bass guitar via a holster.

What a guy.

J.

interpol; koko; 15.05.2007;
pioneer to the falls/obstacle1/narc/say hello to the angels/take you on a cruise/mammoth/slow hands/leif erikson/the heinrich manuever/evil/not even jail/length of love/stella was a diver and she was always down/pda

 

interpol, koko

SHOW me the dirt pile, and I will pray that the soul can take, three stowaways; vanish with no guile, and I will not pay, but the soul can wait. The soul can wait.

Not even a word is said before the opening notes tinkle across the crowd and Paul Banks starts to sing. Two years and a month in the waiting, Interpol have returned to me. I just hope by the ‘dirt pile’, he doesn’t mean the 1,500 people sweating and looking up at him with their mouths aghast.

By the time Pioneer to the Falls has finished, many have eased in. The riff to Obstacle 1 hits and the place goes mental. Everyone rushes forward, including myself, and the gig has arrived.

If there’s one thing about Interpol that catches, the elusiveness of the group; their refusal to define or discuss lyrics, their stylish dress and appearance (apart from the bushy moustache currently on the upper lip of Carlos) – it just all adds up and keeps you wondering. How else can you explain people screaming “her love’s a pony, my love’s subliminal” and it each meaning a different thing to different people?

This is a pre-album gig. Hastily arranged, it was one of these magical occasions when you buy tickets and realise that’s actually only 14 days until you see them – and not four or five months as normal. The set is packed with songs that are known. They rampage and roll through classics from Turn on the Bright Lights and Antics, each delivering the crowd into an uncontrolled urge to bounce. Try listening to Slow Hands, before the chorus, and see if you can’t imagine a crowd itching to bounce when the word “spies” hits.

Not Even Jail stumbled but its sheer force seemed to carry it through. That song just reverberates through your chest as it’s played. Take me on a Cruise eases in and my arms link with the person next to me. The encore rolls on and gives us Length of Love, Stella and brilliantly to end, PDA. A mention should go to the Heinrich Maneuver, received brilliantly by everyone, powering like Slow Hands to a frantic climax, showing just how many fans download music before it’s out.

But it’s Say Hello to the Angels that I remember vividly. That song moves you, rolls you and puts you slap bang in a cathartic event, with people knowing every word, shouting a wave of force back to the band.

And while all this unfolds around you, Carlos is there; wandering around, sneaking glances at the other three and smoking into the microphone.

But it wasn’t perfect. The main disappointment was with the venue, the sound just didn’t translate. During new song, Mammoth, I couldn’t really hear a word of Paul. Arguably, if I didn’t love this band so much I’d pick up on more, but Interpol are emotive, they are there for your involvement and you choose your level; stand at the back nodding your head, bounce with the masses or, like me scream the lines that mean the world to you as loud as you can. No moment gives me shivers like the “you should be in my place, you should be in my space” line in Narc. That song means the world to me.

But it’s great. They come, they go too quickly and I feel exhausted by the end of it. I’ve read some reviews already, with people saying the crowd weren’t totally into it. They obviously weren’t standing where I was and they obviously weren’t in their own little world, as much I was.

So as the sweat dries off and I wander outside, I am resenting a position that’s past resentment; ages ’til the next one. Just as long as it’s not two years again.

J.

Seeing Interpol tonight. Should be three new songs from Our Love to Admire. CanNOT wait! More tomorrow (hopefully!)…

our love to admire

josh.jpgA WEEK or so ago, I fulfilled a six year dream. It’s taken me this long to let it leave my head and judge it properly. Maybe this comes off as too personal rather than informative, but tonight was most definitely personal.

Queens of the Stone Age, the magnificent ensemble fronted by Josh Homme, played a tiny gig in central London last week, at the infamous 100 Club. Apparently chosen by the band themselves, the venue was absolutely perfect; intimate, only a slightly risen stage and thin. My friend and I – Mikael – arrived early and decided to queue around 7ish. We met a lovely lass, Michelle, and her husband in the queue, chatted and eventually got in. We got a beer and then actually noticed where we were… and just how fucking small it was. Five or six people were already there, but there was only one place to go:

Right at the fucking front.

But first, some background. I love Queens. Never has such a band had a permanent groove. For years I’ve wanted to see this band and a while back, I got a ticket to a show. Unfortunately, (and not just personally here) the show fell on an awful day – July 7. Needless to say, Queens never played.

Josh and co came back later that year. They just happened to re-arrange the gig at a good venue, Koko in Camden, and even filmed it, along with another show. They made a DVD of it – you may have seen it. Unfortunately I was in Morocco travelling with my friend, Fatboy.

Since then, nothing. Until tonight.

I visit the Rekords Rekords forum now and again, check sites for Queens news and yesterday, while surfing NME for shitty news, I saw the most amazing thing – Intimate Queens Show. I went on, tried to grab tickets, and got fuck all. But I’m persistent.

About 600 F5 refreshes on my Firefox browser at work later… I had two from a resale. Mikael and myself were there. Nothing could stop us now. I had to skip a softball game at work – our debut no less, I know, not the ‘hippest sport’ – but it’s Queens. There’s no choice.

I nearly cried with joy and ended up banging on about it at work for hours. People probably told me to shut up about it. I would’ve realised.

Cut to 9pm, my legs are aching, I have a man’s hand in my back pushing and am wedged between the pushing mosh and the ass of the girl in front. I wish I’d bought another beer. Too late now. Lose the place.

So when they came out it was a huge peak, I thought maybe I’d overlike it. If I’d put out my arm, I would’ve been playing Josh’s guitar. Amazing. The guy is massive. And so it began.

Misfit Love nearly blew my head off and that was the first song, it was forceful, it was powerful, it had groove and it took me about three minutes to realise that the riff hadn’t even changed yet. It was whizzing me by already. I was sweating too. It was just so fucking hot.

Now a lot of ‘critics’ have put their two cents in since and said how disappointing this gig was. Fuck them. This wasn’t for you, this wasn’t for Mr Drowned in Sound I want a greatest hits set – this was to air the new album to close fans. Not journalists. Fans. Sure, you all got in (there’s a LOT of reviews out there for such a secret gig), but that’s down to the management and probably your persistence and mild threats of bad album reviews. That’s why the link for tickets was mailed to only certain people. Sure, I’d love to have heard some of my favourite songs in the world but that’s because I’ve never seen them before. I was more than happy.

Sick Sick Sick, 3s and 7s, Turning on the Screw – these stand out incredibly. 3s and 7s is an amazing riff-driven song that moves on, before inwardly wanking itself off into a joyous tangent. A bass breakdown later and it throws you back into it’s main riff with Homme’s guitar squealing above everything. Outstanding. Sick Sick Sick is probably one of the phattest (with a ‘ph’) songs that I’ve heard live in ages; c-c-c-c-come on.

See everyone there was so joyous, just dancing, ecstatic that they’d even got tickets (I found out afterwards that most of these were the Queens messageboard regulars, who’d helped each other out with guest tickets to guarentee everyone got in).

But some old songs were there, to whip the crowd into a frenzy. I have never heard any drumming like Joey’s in ages. He’s just immense. It was just so relentless, powering and movement-inducing. Mexicola came and went too quickly, as did Little Sister and In My Head. By the time Song for the Dead finished, I felt like I was going to collapse, purely from listening to drumming that quick. If the phrase ‘speed metal’ was ever invented for anything, it was most definitely that.

A girl climbed on stage and kissed Josh whilst he played. Homme raised his Corona to the crowd and drank in tandem. New bassist, Mikey, threw some amazing shapes, stances and twirled his hair like a maniac to the beat. The crowd moved with the beats. Nearly everyone there was awesome, friendly and most importantly… absolutely loving it.

I met one guy, blue t-shirt who’s name escapes me, but singing along to Mexicola with him was so much fun. I’ve really forgotten the simple pleasure of just dancing, singing and thrusting your hand to the ceiling shouting the words of ‘my favourite song’.

And as I sit here writing this now, wearing my skinny white T (£15 from the stand), all I can do is type and listen to them. As Mr Homme and 300 people shouted last week, ‘It’s in my head, and I need it.’

J.