Tuesday, 27 September 2011

Aurora seen from the ISS in Orbit

This is awesome (in the the truest sense of the word). This video currently has no music, surely there must be some suitable tune out there? I bet Caribou could compose something.

Caribou - Sun

Sunday, 25 September 2011

I used to live next door to The Knife's 'Marble House'

I'm completely hooked on The Knife at the moment. They are simply the best study companions and they also make mean running friends. 'Marble House' is one of my favourite songs of theirs and earlier this evening I was looking around on line for live performances of this song. What followed was an incredibly intense hour of electro pop and then a suprise. The Marble House featured in the background of this performance in Gothenburg, Sweden, (April 12th 2006) is I'm pretty sure this 'Marble Hill House' in East Twickenham, London. I know this house because I used to live literally right next door to it. I think I've got this right, what do you think?


Wednesday, 21 September 2011

Ketty Lester - 'Love Letters'

Given to me by my Dad. Such a classic tune hitting number 4 in 1962 (UK). The vinyl crackles add something magical to this recording. Here's a sans crackle recording, if you want to hear it with crackles you need to invite me and my record over.

Warpaint Rough Trade Session - 'Billie Holiday'


Monday, 19 September 2011

Low Daytrotter Session

There are days when I just can't get enough of Low's most recent album, C'mon. It's days like these when you want a Daytrotter session to come along and give you yet another angle to appreciate the awesomeness that is Low. Today is one of those days.

[Low Daytrotter Session]

Saturday, 17 September 2011

From ATP - four short films by Vincent Moon (Kickstarter)

I've mentioned Kickstarter on here a few times before. It's basically a crowd funding platform for creative projects. If the project reaches it's target amount then it flies, if it doesn't then the project receives zero of the pledged funding. You are rewarded for your donation depending on how much you pledge.

So Vincent Moon, the brains and genius behind the blogotheque 'take away' shows (Les Concerts √† Emporter) has set up a Kickstarter project called 'From ATP'.

Here are details of the project from the ATP website:

"Vincent Moon (the Take Away Shows) went to ATP as a fan on numerous occasions documenting his experiences each time. Some of his footage was used in the fan-sourced feature documentary All Tomorrow’s Parties (directed by All Tomorrow’s People and Jonathan Caouette - http://warp.net/films/atp). That film was completed and released in 2009 but Vincent continued to return to the festival and shoot as a fan, running around the site capturing the unique atmosphere and some incredible performances in his own inimitable style.

The edit for his first stand-alone short film was completed last year and the footage for the next 3 short films is in the can.  Please help us complete post-production so we can get the films out into the world for free (after an exclusive 3 month period where they’ll be available for contributors only).

With your help we will edit a further trilogy of short films (each one approximately 30 minutes) in order to complete this unique project.  Bands documented, and intended for the final films (subject to clearance) include Broken Social Scene, Explosions In The Sky, Four Tet, Animal Collective, The National, Saul Williams, Monotonix, Fantomas, Taraf De Haidouks, Teenage Jesus And The Jerks, Rahzel, the Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Afrirampo, Sleepy Sun and many others.

The four films will be:

From Smoke - Portishead’s Nightmare Before Christmas, narrated by Damo Suzuki.
From Hybrid - Explosions in the Sky’s ATP, narrated by Saul Williams.
The Melvins/Mike Patton curated Nightmare Before Christmas, narrated by Lydia Lunch
10 Years of All Tomorrow’s Parties festival, narrated by Josh Pearson.

Your contributions will help us pay for:

Film editing fees (an editor, the rental of an edit machine, and color grading)
Legal work, permissions and clearances for music and artists included in the films.
Sound mixing and post production.
Hard drives for the footage and web hosting fees for the eventual video.
If you want to get involved in helping to get these films finished and released, check out the Kickstarter page now to see a trailer and get more info. You can pledge anywhere from $1 to $5000, and you will receive special rewards for your contribution - from CD’s, DVD’s & Posters to film credits, festival tickets and your own personal film, made for you by Vincent Moon, anywhere in the world.  "

If you have any spare cashetos and are a fan of music and movie making then this would be such a good project to support. I've been a huge fan of Vincent's take away shows for years. His 'one take' guerilla style of filming is such a pleasure to watch, there's a certain signature rough yet finished feel that means you can immediately tell you're watching his work. I could go on....
If you interested you can get involved here.

[La blogotheque]

Tuesday, 13 September 2011

Little Scream

This is lovely. I think Little Scream is probably on stage supporting Handsome Furs at The Hoxton B&G right now. If you know me, you'll know why I'm not there!

Here's a lovely Little Scream blogotheque show published today:


International PARK(ing) Day - 16th September 2011

Friday September 16th (this week) will be PARK(ing) day's 5th annual celebration. If you haven't heard of it before, PARK(ing) Day is a one-day, global event, where the public, artists and activists collaborate to transform metered parking spaces into “PARK(ing)” spaces - temporary parks for the public good and enhancement of the urban built environment.

Many cities around the world including NYC, LA and London will be taking part with the shared mission of:

- drawing attention to the need for more urban open spaces
- generating dialogue in relation to how public space is created and allocated
- improving the quality of the urban human habitat

One of my favourite London charities Trees for Cities is getting involved working with key artists, charities, designers and creative's to launch this international event in London this week, to coincide with the start of London Fashion Week and London Design Week.

By getting involved Trees for Cities is hoping to provoke thought, spark reactions and bring a little humour to unsuspecting Londoners and visitors that stumble across the PARK(ing) bays. In addition to the PARK(ing) bay installations there will be live music and street theatre/ performers to bring the space alive.

They will be on Concert Hall Approach, London SE1 on Friday 16th September from 10am - 6pm. This is a busy area near Waterloo and the South Bank Centre so it should be quite a hit.

The PARK(ing) bay installations will include:

'Class(ic) cliché - An interpretation of a formal Italianate garden - Will Sandy Landscape Architecture

The Green Carpet Runway - a catwalk featuring ethical fashion designers. Two salon style fashion shows will see models from the leading UK model agency -Premier Model Management, model sustainable and upcycled clothing and accessories. The shows will be accompanied by musician Joe Cang providing a live acoustic set.

The Parking Bay - An interpretation on reclaiming the urban environment with a humourous take on the term 'parking bay' – using a bay tree. To endorse this concept we are inviting a number of London's finest artists to join us on the day with sculptures and site-specific pieces.

The Portable Woodland - a moveable woodland space created in collaboration with Trees for Cities. Highlighting the need for more trees in cities, this exhibit will bring verdant woodland into the heart of London for a day.

The Edible Container Garden - an area illustrating the simplicity of growing your own food in whatever space you may have available regardless of the limitations - from a window box, or roof terrace to a small patio. This is a collaboration with the Edible Bus Stop Community Garden Project.

In addition to all of these attractions there will be mischievous artistic installations, and a festival theatre troop doing street performances. It will be a creative, design led event with a quirky feel promising a day to remember.

Here are some photos from past events from all over the world so you can get an idea of what it might look like. Should be a super fun day!


Album Release Week

Autumn seems to mark the start of a barrage of new album releases. This year's round might not be all your cups of tea but I'm fairly confident there's something in there for everyone. Most of these albums are streaming somewhere on line and I've tracked them down for your listening pleasure!

Laura Marling - A Creature I Don't Know [stream here

St Vincent - Strange Mercy [stream here

You Aint No Picasso is currently featuring 14 downloadable St Vincent covers. Check it out here.

Peggy Sue - Acrobats [stream here]

Girls - Father, Son, Holy Ghost [stream here]

And as if all this isn't enough to keep you busy, Kate Bush has announced a new album. Yes the album rumours were true. It's called 50 Words For Snow and will be released on 21 November 2011. This album will be the second release from Kate’s own label Fish People. Read all about it here.

In the spirit of album releases I think it's also worth a mention that it is 20 years since Nirvana's Nevermind album was released. Last week's Sunday Times ran a feature called 20 'did you knows' about the album. One of the facts was how Chad Channing, Nirvana's first drummer gets royalties for three barely audible cymbal crashes heard at the beginning of 'Polly'. Being as Nevermind went on to sell over 30 million copies I'd imagine Chad Channing is happy he got up and made some noise that day!


Friday, 9 September 2011

The Peckham Rat

Not sure where I'm going with this photo...
Basically I walked past this huge inflatable rat in an art exhibition/unused car park in Peckham (London) today. It did have music blasting out from it but I couldn't recognise the tune, sounded 70's-ish. I guess I'm posting this because I can't help but think it's strange that I can stand next to this and not be freaked out, yet I turn into a scared-e-cat mess when I watch The Muppets/Fraggle Rock and have people around me wearing masks. I know....I don't know either...

Also, the building you can just about see in the background is the Bussey building. Not only is it where Dan Deacon did a show earlier this year, it's also where one of England's legendary cricketers, WG Grace used to have his cricket bats made a long time ago. Incidentally WG Grace is the great grandad of a close friend of mine who shares the impressive hair gene. Here's lots more info if you're interested.

Wednesday, 7 September 2011

Girls - 'Father, Son, Holy Ghost' Album Stream

San Franciscan band Girls will be releasing their second album 'Father, Son, Holy Ghost' on September 13th and in the spirit of listen before you buy, they're released a stream of the entire album a whole week early. Looking forward to seeing them at The Electric Ballroom on November 9th, tickets here.

End of the Road Festival 2011 Quick Notes

As the wind and rain lashes against my London flat, the heady days of last weekends End of the Road festival already seem like distant memories, but very good ones at that.

The performances I enjoyed the most were tUne-yArDs, M Ward, Midlake and Austra.

Midlake had a huge banner with the cover from their latest album 'The Courage of Others' as their stage backdrop on the newly added and very big Woods stage, this created a great visual point for those of us stuck right at the back. 'Acts of Man' and 'Roscoe' sounded sublime.

Merrill Garbus of tUne-yArDs is just over and over again crazily good. The audience predictably loved her and her amazing yodels - always wonder how she discovered she could do that.

M Ward is possibly one the most impressive singer/songwriter musicians around right now. His solo rendition of 'Poor Boy, Minor Key' and 'Hello Stranger' (with Jolie Holland) left me jaw a-gaping. That man really is a grand master of his tools.

I'd really wanted to see Austra for a while, love their debut album 'Feel It Break' so was a little suprised by how some people left the audience after they started playing. I thought it was great although I do think the twins who sing backing vocals definitely bring a necessary extra dimension to the show, it would have been a bit flat without them. 'Beat and the Pulse' was an obvious favourite, you just know some songs are going to sound brilliant live.

Other great moments included hearing Treefight for Sunlight cover 'Wuthering Heights' from inside my tent (sounded like this), catching Jim Bob from Carter USM playing 'The Only Living Boy In New Cross' acoustically on the comedy stage, the cider bus, baby peacocks and Okkervil River playing a secret show on a boat in the woods.

I also enjoyed Beirut, Micah P Hinson, Lykke Li, Phosphorescent (although he needed his band to make the show complete), Timber Timbre and Kurt Vile and the Violators.

This was my third time at this festival and although it was noticeably bigger this year both from a people and lay out perspective, the general feeling was that the organisers pulled it off successfully, just don't let it get any bigger. The new large Woods stage is an excellent addition and although perhaps somewhat less intimate than the Garden stage, at least its position at the bottom of a slight incline gives you a chance of actually seeing the performers from wherever you are standing even if it's right at the back.

Same again next year?

Apologies to those of you who I tried and failed to meet up with, my phone failed miserably at finding a reception. Hopefully we can meet at a London show sometime.

Living Room stage where anyone can perform
Houses in a tree
Okkervil River secret set in a boat
Me lounging in a nearby field :)
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