Sunday, 12 December 2010

Heaven knows I'm miserable now

The Smiths quoted on Prime Minister's Question Time! Are you cringing as much as I am?xx

Sunday, 21 November 2010

On a ferris wheel looking out on Coney Island

Firstly, I'm so sorry for being rubbish and not updating this website for ages. And yes I also apologise for apologising, it is some kinda cliche to begin a blog post by apologising for not posting. I've been busy trying to find a job and then also working for very little money. I guess I'm technically unemployed but I think I've had the least amount of spare time I've ever had, even when I was working! My band The Loves have been playing some shows, we went to Spain which an insane awesome party, and also to Nottingham which wasn't such an insane party, just involved a lot of shouting about 'Withnail and I' and watching "It's Always Sunny In Philadelphia".

Of course as ever, I've found the time to watch all my favourite telly programs, though am slightly disappointed with the lack of indie music references, what is going on in the world? I guess it's still early days though, Gossip Girl had a slightly pointless Robyn appearance (and Rachel Zoe got covered in chocolate! Yess!) and I'm sure it's only a matter of time until they wheel out another 90's indierock star soon. Why can't The Walking Dead have a popstar in it like The Stand did, so that he can batter a zombie with a flying v and then sing a song over their bloody corpse? Instead we have to listen to Egg from This Life's bad bad southern accent? (I like the program though, apart from the accent...) Have I not been watching the right tv programs? Or are people not interested in minor indie celebrities any more?

I did see two really cool documentaries though which you should try and see if you get the chance. The first is the awesome "Strange Powers: Stephin Merritt and The Magnetic Fields" which is a total must for fans of The Magnetic Fields, the film tells the story of the band in a very fitting manner, aswell of having lots of funny little interviews and some hilarious photos of Stephin Merritt and Claudia Gonson looking very 80s goth! It's touring the world at the mo, become a fan on the old Facebook to find out when it's next in yr city. After watching the film, I stood next to Stephin (too indie to say anything to him apart from a squeeky "hi" and that was after three glasses of wine) and listened to him have a good grump about someone's baby in the bar, I feel like I've had the Merritt experience now!

And I also saw a cool documentary about Le Tigre at Ladyfest Ten just before MEN (JD Samson's new band!) headlined the Saturday night. The film documents the bands last tour and is mainly on the road footage and live shots, there are some funny bits like when they met Slipknot! Check out the Le Tigre blog for details of screening and whatnot

Oh yeah, you may remember a while back I talked about Chris Packham quoting The Smiths on Springwatch? Well he only went and did it again in 2010 by name dropping Cure song titles, man he's so indie! Check out this interview with him, where he talks about his love of the Mary Chain and Cocteau Twins and his collection of 2000 punk vinyl singles.

There's also this playlist (and moody aging indie boy photo) on his website. Who thought this guy from The Really Wild Show was that cool?(apart from Snow Patrol, of course)

If he didn't have such bad hair maybe I'd fancy him.

I really enjoyed season 2 of Bored To Death, I LOVE Jason Schwartzman (go short people!) and would like to have a hug from Zak Galifianakis. It was the season finale last week, and they ended the series with this awesome song by Yo La Tengo I've had it in my head all week, I found this lovely live version of the song so you can too! Watch enjoy!
Until next time, which I promise will be sooner

Wednesday, 22 September 2010

Good thing there's a celebrity hairdresser around here

Check out Thrill, dancing roadie with the awesome Still Flyin have his mullet shaved off on this Jimmy Fallon show this week. So many questions and so little answers, hella funny though, and pretty cool to see an Excalibrah shirt on TV,

Still Flyin are just about to embark on a European tour, come join the party...
9/23: Hamburg- Instore show at Freiheit and Roosen @ 5 pm
9/24: Hamburg - Reeperbahn Festival @ Prinzenbar
9/25: Berlin - Uncle Sallys Clubnacht @ Comet
9/27: Brighton, UK - Jam
9/28: Glasgow, UK - Captain's Rest
9/29: Sheffield, UK - Plug @ The Forum
9/30: London, UK - Hoxton Bar & Kitchen
10/1: Schaffhausen, Switzerland - TapTab
10/2: Genova, Italy - Museo Luzzati
10/3: Ferrara, Italy - Zuni
10/4: Treviso, Italy - Club Macaco
10/5: Munich, Germany - Atomic Cafe
10/6: Dresden, Germany - Ostpol (Wimp Club)
10/7: Vienna, Austria - Arena
10/8: Innsbruck, Austria - Bierstindl
10/9: Weyer, Austria - Bertholdsaal

Check out what you'll miss out on....

I think they have a new record out soon, too which you should really buy, more info here when it's all ready.

Cops on the Beat Happening

Yes appologies for the awful pun but this is one of those rare occasions where some of the worst type of television (the Cops reality TV show, bleugh!) collides with our little indie word. OK, so not Beat Happening but The Halo Benders one of Calvin Johnson's many other awesome bands. Watch as they get stopped and man handled by the 'Real Stories of the Highway Patrol' Rather unsavoury viewing, my favourite bit is when Calvin talks back at the self important cops, go him!

And yes welcome back, sorry there hasn't been an update in like forever, I myself have been travelling all around the USA which was as you imagine pretty awesome! And lucky me I got to see The Hive Dwellers, Calvin's new band twice, they're awesome, I can't wait for their record to come out. Here's a video of them performing one of my favourites.

Hope you're all well

Tuesday, 22 June 2010

We'll show him a little Bikini Kill!

It's been ages hasn't it? Sorry indiekids, been swamped with University work, sorting out stuff for the Indietracks Festival (please come!) I also went to ATP which was one awesome party. Yes yes, I know all excuses!

So yeah last night reading my Bust magazine as any indie girl should, the Riot Grrrl article mentioned in passing that there was an episode of Roseanne where she picks up a riot grrrl hitch hiker who gives them a Bikini Kill tape. So yeah, here is it, god the riot girl is bad! But yeah Roseanne is awesome and says some cool stuff, isn't her baby freaky looking though?

And also, USA go and check out Cyrus at the cinema, featuring music from everyone's favourite party band Still Flyin'! Apparently John C. Reilley dances to their track "The Hott Chord is Struck". Check out the trailer and spot Jonah Hill playing an omnichord!

Hope yr all having fun in the sun

Monday, 12 April 2010

So what are you like alternative now?

So yeah, finally after months of waiting (I still can't believe I didn't cave and download this movie, we've had to wait so long for it to come out in the UK) I got to see Whip It this evening. And yeah, pretty good hur, ok a bit predictable but the lovely Ellen Page, Alia Shawkat and Kristen Wiig stole the show for me. For the record this is the first film in ages that almost made me cry, I'm not much of a softie honest.

So yeah, we now know I'm a wimp and that the film rocks, but what we really want to know is how indie it is, right?

1. Dialogue
Um yeah, no real name dropping there apart from a Stryper tee shirt mentioned a bit in conversation, Stryper were of course an 80's christian glam metal band, I have only heard of them because I've just finished reading a book about Christian Rock written by Andrew Beaujon who was in that band Eggs, they were good aye, better than Stryper for sure, I think Stryper had better hair and pyrotechnics though.

Oh yeah, and Bliss and Oliver have their first conversations talking about Little Joy who oh yeah feature Fabrizio Moretti. Oh wow Drew, that's subtle, get yr exboyfs band name dropped in yr movie to show yr just good friends. They interrupt a Jens Lekman track to put the record on too, that's so uncool.

Yeah so no real indie dialogue and they lose points for cutting the Jens track short, only 1 cardigan point.

2. Music Paraphernalia
Well yes apart from the aforementioned Stryper tee shirt, the puppy dog eyed indie boy that Bliss falls for is seen sporting a Daniel Johnston teeshirt. Though I knew he wasn't one to be trusted, when it came to swapping teeshirts and he wouldn't swap his DJ tee, but instead gave here some lame khaki shirt. If a boy wont lend you his Daniel Johnston tee, he can't be trusted - fact. I think they must have got the rights to that "Hi, How are you?" artwork as it was bleeding everywhere too!

I'm sorry to digress again, but yeah I had the good fortune to go see Daniel Johnston a week or so ago, sadly the freakbeat orchestra made it a pretty hard going, this was awesome though...

Well it's not every day that a Daniel Johnston tee is on yr cinema screen, has to be 4 cardigan points.

3. Band Cameos
a few here... Har Mar Superstar plays a coach, Juliette Lewis (well she claims to be a musician now, I remain sceptical) and Eve are all in the film. Oh yeah and Andrew Wilson, the older and lesser known Wilson brother is also in that, it's not a Texan movie without a Wilson bro, fact!
yeah, I guess that's 3 cardigan points

4. Soundtrack
Jens (three songs! indie!), Tilly and The Wall, American Analog Set, The Go! Team, Clap Your Hands Say Yeah, The Raveonettes though they must lose points for playing Radiohead and Kids by MGMT, I must admit I love that song, but it always accompanies the most cheesiest cinematography, oh look the tune kicks back in and they have a big hug, it's almost like MGMT wrote it in mind that it was going to be played bloody everywhere!
So yeah, 4 cardigan points

5. General Indieness
Hella indie, but not cutesy, badass, indie kids don't normally punch other girls in the face and this could be the first ever indie sports movie (tho roller derby is probably the most indie sport right?).
I guess 3 cardigan points

So yeah, that's 15 cardigan points out of a possible 25, so yeah not that indie, hella good though, do go see it!

Before I go, check out this, indiepop darls Allo Darlin' being played on Beverly Hills 90210, awesome stuff!

If yr free this thursday (and you live in London of course) come see them supporting Hefner singer Darren Hayman at The Borderline, see you down the front!
Until then, hope you're having fun enjoying the spring sun!

Wednesday, 10 March 2010

I remember the car I was driving when I first heard Her Jazz by Huggy Bear

Last night I left the safety of north London to go see new(ish) British Indie flick 1234. Based around the lifespan of the fictional London based indiepop band 1234, not a great deal happens in it, but I think that helps to capture the mundanity of small band existance, working in crappy call centres and unrequited love with pretty girls in pretty dresses. OK let the indie review commence, you know the score, now how well will this one score in cardigan points?

1. Dialogue
I jotted down a few good quotes in the cinema, I got a bit tipsy in the pub round the corner from the cinema before the screening tho so I could've got some a bit wrong...
"You've got an unsual bass sound, it sounds like The Yummy Fur, Nation of Ulysses, The Pastels..."(and prob some other bands probably but I write slow) Stevie trying win over Billy the guitarist.
Stevie goes on to describe the future band as sounding "a bit Postcard, Jeepster, Chemikal Underground" and also uses the choice line "if I wasn't in this band, they'd be my favourite band", we've all said that once, normally when we're very drunk.
"I remember the car I was driving when I first heard Her Jazz by Huggy Bear" Stevie again in one of his overly indie and emotional speeches, he also remembers where he first heard Tigermilk (don't we all?)
The one piece of good luck for the band was that Kill Rock Stars wanted to hear a second demo,
Hella indie, 5 cardigan points!

2. Music Parapanalia
The film starts well with a close of shot of Plan B magazine (RIP) but after that the film lacks the indie product placement that other films excel at, a lot of the posters were for made up bands and the band members stuck to wearing those Canadian vintage tee shirts you can get from Rocket instead of a suitably cool band tee. Though I'm pretty sure I spotted an Evens poster in Stevie's bedroom and Giles Borg (Director innit) wearing a Urusei Yatsura teeshirt.
Only 3 cardigan points, could try better.

3. Band Cameos
This is where the movie excels in the indie-est of cameo's featuring the lovely Betty and The Werewolves and Comet Gain both playing live. As can sometimes be the case with Comet Gain shows, not all of the members turned up to the gig, this version of 'Comet Gain' features Rachel and Jon from the band joined by Matthew Sawyer (The Ghosts, The TVPs), Steve Dore from The Casual Dots and James Canty (Nation of Ulysses/The Make Up/French Toast). What a line up, why on earth did they play a show to just six people? Sack the promoter, you'd never get that at Basement Scam!

The film also features a live performance from Director Giles Borg's own band, the catchily named Sunnyvale Noise Sub-element, props to him for featuring his own band, if I was making a movie I'd feature my own band in it, you better believe it.
Sadly none of the cameos have any lines so the film loses one point.... four cardigan points.

4. Soundtrack
Hella indie.... as well as the live performances, the soundtrack included Bikini Kill, Stereolab, Belle and Sebastian, My Sad Captains (the lovely Great Expectations plays during the end credits) and some.
5 cardigan points

5. General indieness
Skinny indieboy who looks like a cross between Rob Price (Airport Girl) and Mark Monnone (The Lucksmiths) who doesn't have a girlfriend living in indieboy dreamworld, pained over unrequited love and no one understanding him or his band, a popular narrative for any true indie film. I think the attempt to catch the grim reality of being skint in London stopped it from being hella indie though, there's no real cutesy cinematography or quirkiness that makes a true indiekid film, so yeah sorry, only 2 cardigan points.

So that's a total of 19 out of 25 cardigan points, hella indie but still could do better.

Oh yeah, a props to the film for featuring the Finsbury Park job centre, Finsbury Park reprezent!

The film is on tour the next few weeks, why not see whether it's playing in your town here
The Movie Website

And finally, let's end with another video, I don't think the band were named after this song, but it's awesome and doesn't Feist look lovely in her shiny jumpsuit?

Hope you're well

Wednesday, 3 March 2010

"Indie rock is gay" according to Greek

So there I was eating my burrito and watching this weeks installment of the University drama/comedy Greek waiting for the next scene with Cappie in (I'm a girl of simple pleasures...). And yeah so anyway there's this scene where Calvin, the jock gay guy is talking about making a "gay list" of his favourite gay music to reconnect with his inner gayness, there's a screenshot of his itunes and yep, see for yourself...

Deerhoof, Belle and Sebastian, Death Cab For Cutie, The Shins, Violent Femmes, Beulah, The Jesus and Mary Chain, Le Tigre, Pin Back all bands I think of when I think of gay music of course. And of course those godfathers of gay The Velvet Underground! Not a Cher or Madonna in sight. Well done to the greek music coordinators for getting this so right!

Props is due to Calvin for putting Two Headed Boy by Jeff Mangum from that live solo thing he did, awesome version.

Now I'm going to return to my burrito but I will leave you with a picture of the lovely Cappie, hope you are all well and have an awesome spring xx

Wednesday, 3 February 2010

Listening and dancing to music is AWESOME!!!

Hello guys!

Hope you are well, I'm good, my band did some kick ass recording today and I managed to do a vaguely convincing stab at a mod organ part, fun times!

Here's the first of a series of posts about indie bands on kids TV programs, cause crikey there's tons of them out there. Now in my day, kids TV was Dogtanian, Mysterious Cities of Gold and the closest thing we got to a band on kids telly was the Orange Organics (please don't tell me you don't remember Pugwall) and whatever PJ and Duncan's band on Byker Grove was called. Now it seems that now indiekids are in charge of making TV programs that they want to have their favourite indie bands come on and play songs for children. I guess it makes sense, our parents played us The Beatles and now parents play their children The Shins and Chromeo (very cool parents I must add).

Now, I've never watched an episode of Yo Gabba Gabba, kids TV normally makes my head explode and 5.40am (when it's on telly in England!) is not a time I'm ever awake or in a state to watch kids TV, it's just too confusing! But I spent a whole day watching videos on You Tube of bands playing on the program. Seriously, what band hasn't been on there... Here are some of the best clips I found on the website and t'interweb. I love how the Ladytron one they're like "yeah we'll be on the program but we must just bring our usual boring black stage set up, none of this colourful kids TV program nonsense". The Chromeo video makes me smile too much, I will always remember now to wash my hands before I play my synthesiser!




The Salteens

The Postmarks


Some other videos I couldn't find how to embed...


The Shins Hooray for The Shins!
Mates of State
Of Montreal

And here are two super cute covers of The Free Design, I bloody love The Free Design!
"Kites are Fun"
"I Found Love" Hella twee video, nice.

And lastly, Elijah Wood showing us how to do The Puppet!

My sources say that the Geeks from Freaks and Geeks performed at the live Yo Gabba Gabba show, I'd like to have seen that. Anyone have a video of that? for now here's a nice photo of them in their Yo Gabba Gabba get up.

Hope you're well
Until next time

D is for DANCING!!!

Tilly and the Wall on Sesame Street, huzzar!

Hope you're all awesome, I'm good, been enjoying being crafty these last few weeks, today I'm off to Canterbury for the first time ever!

Tuesday, 19 January 2010

The Greatest Opera Performance by a Rock Bass Player According to Meat Loaf

How the devil do you get Myleen Class, Alan Titchmarsh, Meat Loaf, Catherine Jenkins and Lawrence Llewelyn Bowen in a room together? Why would you want to? Well new ITV entertainment show Popstar To Operastar does just that. The show takes popstars such as Bernie Nolan (being ITV it must have a Nolan sister on there somehow), Marcella Detroit from Shakespeare Sister, Darius and Jimmy Osmond and makes them sing well known opera off the adverts.

What does this have to do with indie rock? Well amongst the 70's popstars, gardeners, ex girl band members and whatnot was Alex James from Blur doing a rather amazing version of a Rossini piece, watch and prepare to be dazzled, I'm sorry but words generally fail me.

Oh yes, one must appreciate but Alex is looking fine at the moment, the years seemed to have dropped off him since the Blur shows last summer. This is what a diet of cheese does for you obviously!

Hope you are well, I'm good, off to see the mighty Shrag this evening
Ta taa

Tuesday, 12 January 2010

Happy 100th birthday How I Met Your Mother!!

Ahh, How I Met Your Mother, probably the funniest sitcom on telly and one of the few telly programs where catch phrases are alright or even legen - wait for it - dary! (sorry...) This week we celebrated the program's 100th episode, that means we've spent 41 hours and 40 minutes watching the program. Whoa! That's a lot of How I Met Your Mother! and to celebrate it they decided to sing a song about Barney's favourite item of clothing...

Of course How I Met Your Mother has had it's fair few band name dropping incidents, my favourite was when Ted thinks he's going to have a threesome and invites the ladies up to his flat to listen to his Wilco cd (yes cause that's what gets the girls going, bit of Jeff Tweedy! Well actually...). Ted has also used both Kim Deal and Kim Gordon when describing his soul mate and in the first series he dates a girl who had a favourite Belle & Sebastian song (which was "We Rule The School" pop fans, not my favourite, I think mine is "Legal Man" or maybe "I Could Be Dreaming" or probably another one). Probably the most annoying thing that even though Ted is Mr. Indie he has bad hair and is also Mr. Boring, bad combination!! See for yrself...

The 100th episode is no exception with Ted getting all excited when he spots the girl (played by the lovely Rachel Bilson) he's on a date with owns The Unicorns album 'Who Will Cut Our Hair When We're Gone?'. I miss The Unicorns, I know we have Clues and Islands, but god dammit, it's not the same!

Check out this blog about the music featured on How I Met Your Mother
And this website It was the best night ever (yes that IS Nuno from Extreme, blimey!)
And of course Barney's Blog

Friday, 1 January 2010

Are we having fun yet?

Happy new year readers!
Hope you had a fun night last night, mine was spent giggling and dancing to 90s chart classics in Stoke Newington before marvelling at Myleen Class' freaky face whilst she introducing the fireworks on the telly. I'm so glad I wasn't in that crowd, they looked so bloody miserable!

OK, here's my pick of the best of 2009 telly and films, yep I probably missed loads...
Best TV program - Party Down
In brief a comedy program about a catering company staffed by out of work actors, writers and comedians who don't seem to do any work and cause chaos at every event they work at. It's total cringe comedy but I don't think I've laughed so hard in ages.
With a creative team including Veronica Mars creator Rob Thomas, Paul "hottie" Rudd and TV's Fred Savage (?!) there was always high expectations. There are also loads of familiar faces including Freaks and Geeks Martin Starr, pretty much everyone from Veronica Mars (including an awesome cameo from Kristin Bell in the last episode of the series) and George Takei!

I also unashamed loved Series 3 of Californication (Kathleen Turner's character Sue Collini was probably the scariest thing I saw on TV last year!), Greek, Ugly Betty, Curb Your Enthusiasm and John Safran's Race Relations.

I am also enjoying the current series of Glee but I can't stand the singing (if I wanted to watch X Factor I'd watch it alright?!) it has reminded me of the merits of Journey though and Jane Lynch is amazing as ever.

Best Films
Of course it would be Whip It if they weren't taking ages getting around to releasing it in the UK, they still haven't scheduled it yet, god dammit! So I guess it'd have to be

Paper Heart, Where The Wild Things Are, Funny People

Best indie rock cameo
I guess this has to be Sonic Youth on Gossip Girl, which I mentioned in the first post.

What did I miss?

And finally, nothing cheers me up more than hearing one of my favourite indiepop bands played on the telly. Yep tonight's Gavin and Stacey featured a tiny snippet of Comet Gain's classic 'You Can Hide Your Love Forever', watch the episode again here on iPlayer. Don't stay watching though as you'll have to listen to Florence and The Machine whilst Gavin talks about his balls, yelp! They have no class on this program...

EDIT - I have since been informed that fellow Fortuna Pop-sters The Lucksmiths were also played later on in the episode (shows how much attention I was paying!). This episode was brought to you by the letters F and P...

Hope you are all well and your teenies (is that what we call this decade?) are awesome!