“God is a Concept by which we measure our pain”. Or so said John Lennon. And my Facebook update today like. This is from Lennon’s song God. Dunno how I hadn’t heard it before. You think you know something about a topic and the older you get the more you realise you know nothing about anything… which kinda makes me think that if we all live to old age we end up realising life is one big fallacy. The longest joke you’ll ever get to hear. It’s all bollocks really isn’t it? Just 6 billion lost souls wandering around trying to rationalise existence and consciousness through self inflicted external sources, whatever that might mean. OMG yea!!1111111 lolz11 Still, it kinda ties into the song lyrics. Give it a listen you gypsies. It’s rather good.
Archive for the 'Music' Category
So, further to this post here, the inevitable happened and big business shat all over the best use of the music and the internet since, well the internet and pandora.com has shut down services to the UK. Here’s a highlight of what Tim Westergren, the founder emailed to users in this country:
This is an email I hoped I would never have to send. In July 2007 we had to block usage of Pandora outside the US because of the lack of a viable license structure for Internet radio streaming in other countries. It was a terrible day. We held out some hope that a solution might exist for the UK so we left it unblocked as we worked to negotiate an economically workable license fee. After a year of trying, this has proved impossible. Both the PPL (which represents the record labels) and the MCPS/PRS Alliance (which represents music publishers) have demanded per track performance minima rates which are far too high to allow ad supported radio to operate and so, hugely disappointing and depressing to us as it is, we have to block the last territory outside of the US.
It continues to astound me and the rest of the team here that the industry is not working more constructively to support the growth of services that introduce listeners to new music and that are totally supportive of paying fair royalties to the creators of music
I wrote to them expressing how lame this whole affair was and I even got a personal email back thanking me for my support and general heavy usage. What jolly nice people. Still, this news was so big it even made the BBC News website.
Nonetheless, after a few rant about this on a music website, all isn’t lost just yet. I was directed to ths site here that might be a back door for us Brits still use the wicked Pandora technology. I haven’t actually tried it yet, so don’t moan to be when if doesn’t work. It seems to be broken at present and probably won’t change. Any other suggestions welcome though…
Just got back from seeing Prince’s night at The Dome. I really thought it would suck - It’s an arena gig for starters. Secondly, I could image 50 costume changes whilst his band “get down” for 10 minute tedious chunks at a time. Turns out it was fucking amazing.
As it was his last night, everyone got a purple glow stick and a free Prince album on the way in. Nice, but also pretty clever - As we came him, he’d been in stage for about 30 seconds and had just started playing Controversy… the sight of walking in to the arena in the pitch black, illuminated only by Prince in the middle on his symbol stage and 10,000 purple glow sticks covering the walls was pretty amazing. I actually nearly shed a tear because I was so overwhelmed. Really. That’s how amazing it was. Or maybe I was just being mental. Either way, it set a precedent for the rest of the show. Two hours, gone in a flash. There wasn’t one low point - One break from being utterly entertained. I don’t even normally clap my hands at gigs and I was dancing. Actually dancing, you know like women do in clubs. So was the whole crowd. It was possibly the best atmosphere I’ve ever felt at a gig - and the venue was huge.
Our seats were pretty damn good too, it’s a shame that my shite camera phone doesn’t make it look like that. Then again, I think even if you were on the third tier atthe back it would have been brilliant. Look, I got through this whole thing without using the word “funky”.
Remember when John Lennon got shot? Or Kurt Cobain killed himself? Or Layne Staley OD’d? Those were bad days for music. But this the nearest to an opposite you can get: here.
Hahahaha - The cunts.
Unfortunately, when I typed in Anathema as the basis for my radio station, the first hour was just purely offensive nu-metal, but even this was overshadowed by the awful moment Feeder popped up. I was nearly physically sick. Then again… the more you reject (which I did by the bucket load) the better it got. Then I worked out how to add other music to the “foundation tunes” of the station and it all got a lot better very quickly.
I haven’t got a clue how Last.fm works (as I refuse to sign up if I can’t use moker or mokershipping, both of which are bizarrely taken) but apparently, I’ve been told it’s better. Anyone wanna shed some light on the matter?
UPDATE: Just had a chat with Jack and he told me how Last.fm is based on the music on your PC. Interesting. Anyway, here’s how it works.
Ever since I got my Creative Zen I’ve (surprisingly) been listening to a lot more music than before. Being able to download tons of music onto an mp3 player and listen to it on my annoyingly lengthy tube journeys actually means I have time to listen to music properly (unless of course you’re on the Central Line which is so noisy, you may as well give up listening to anything as it all just sounds like a high-hat anyway). It’s also made me obsessively comb the net for music downloads and search myspace, harvesting downloadable tracks as I go. On that note, here’s some bands that I’ve recently found, or investigated more and realised they’re actually a lot better than I thought. Bear in mind, I’m not trying to be cool, or kick off some musical debate or show how “alternative I am” (as mostly, I’m really not).
The Sounds Scandinavian total major chord pop. Go on, try to hate them, it’s impossible.
The Clerks Check out their single, it reminds me of Stereolab. Also have a listen to the track they have on the ‘Art Goes Pop’ myspace. Again, totally unashamedly accessible, just done so well. I’m not saying they’re flawless, but some of there stuff is “really rather good in fact”.
Quad Riot Best unsigned band in London. Actually, make that Kent. Just purely good. So good, they won themselves a space under ‘Musical People’ in the right hand column. Go listen DAMN YOU.
Pete and the Pirates Not only did these guys also win a place under my ‘Musical People’ menu but they also had a rather well exposed half page arse licking by The Metro about 10 days ago. Layered, clever and makes your collective pretentious stoney faces crack a smile.
I Love You but I’ve Chosen Darkness Brilliant post rock from across the pond. Clever, unpredictable and… all that. Buy the album.
iLiKETRAiNS If you haven’t heard of this band, what have you been doing eh? They’re just released album ‘Progress/Reform’ is stunning and their gigs are alright too.
65daysofstatic Actually liked these guys for ages, but well worth a mention. It’s like post rock and drum and bass all mixed together. Post-bass innit. They own (as the kids say).
That’s just a few. But there’s also other stuff well worth listening to, The Tambourines, Emmy the Great, A conversation Piece (oh yeah), Miss Black America, God is an Astronaut (very good!), Butterfly Explosion, Mandelbrot Set etc. And why didn’t anyone tell me ‘Ill Communication’ by the Beastie Boys was so good? What do you mean everyone did?
The 0898z, Barnet’s most notorious punk band, is fighting the corporate sell outs at Wikipedia to get their influence and importance recognised. click here to view the page and more importantly, discuss this page and The 0898z in the full glare of Wikipedia admin by clicking here and even more importantly, say why we should not be deleted by clicking here. Got that?
Some other Barnet bands are also mentioned, some you might recognise, some you might not. For the literally tens of people that were caught up in the Barnet music scene in the 1990s, it meant a lot. Well, something at least. Who can forget Barnet’s own music festival Garystock, Undertow’s new year gig at Liberty Hall’s listed building, FLS at the Duke of Lancaster knocking over the mixing desk in a fever of over moshing, The 0898z graffiti at Alston Works overlooking Barnet, Cyanide Ceed playing at the Old Bull Arts Centre. Leash playing at Friern Barnet fair… all of it legendary.
UPDATE: To have a look at some legendry 0898z album covers, you can still see them on Google’s Cache if you click here. The featured covers are the backs and fronts of: The showaddywaddy EP, The Smarmy Garnet EP, The Eggy Arab EP, The Aeroplane EP.
After months and months of pondering over this poster and then about a week of collating info from the internet, I have (I believe) got almost all the answers to Virgin Digital’s ’spot the band’ puzzle poster. So click on the thumbnailed image to see the answers:
And yes, I am fully aware that I have more than 75 band names, but that’s because there is more than one answer to some images. For example, the two Blues Brother guys aren’t actualy the Blues Brothers, but are (apparently) The Killers. There’s loads of doubling up like this. Another example is The Carpenters on the roof, who some believe are actually ‘Men at Work’. Anyway, I don’t actually know what the official answers are according to Virgin Digital but stop moaning, there isn’t anything else like this on the net at present, so it’s the best you’re all gonna get. Roll on the 400 comments telling me I’m wrong…
Further to my last post about my humble gig at the Bull and Gate, it is with some bizarre pride that I can report Barge’s ambient dance outfit, C806 (pronounced Cato Six – Read the link in the right hand menu dammit) has been signed to two labels. One net based, the other who are ready to press and release his new material.
Of course, if C806 was an indie-rock band, I’d be sick with jealousy and would probably be plotting plot his musical demise quicker than you can say ‘what about me?’… Nonetheless, despite some nay-sayers, Barge has persevered with his tunes and actually produces some pretty complicated and clever stuff. I had a minidisc of some earlier tracks that I listened to for about a month non-stop. If you haven’t checked him out yet, click on the link under Musical People. They’re not just there to look pretty you know.
*Climb Every Time was a mini album C806 released a few years back as a demo. Do you see what I did there?
Late last week, the normal serenity of historical Canterbury was slightly rocked! Legendary music venue The Beer Cart Arms became host to the equally legendary Tom Arnold’s Revulsion. This one-man, electronic metal band performed an exclusive first ever gig to a barely controllable small to medium sized crowd. Whilst this reporter was not actually there, the rumours of audience whooping, clapping and head-nodding have travelled far and wide. Arnold himself owned the “mother-fucking” stage. Strutting his stuff, he successfully pulled off pose after pose whilst sporting unquestionably fashionable camouflage slacks.
After the gig fans rejoiced in experiencing what one onlooker branded “a sonic onslaught of electric death”. Another was heard to have said it was “alright” and a third commenting that “the beer in here is quite cheap”.
Whilst we were unable to get any formal comment from the band, a group email was sent to Revulsion’s most hardcore fans. A direct quote from the email read:
“People seemed to be really positive about the thing afterwards but I tend to take those compliments with a pinch of salt coz people arnt exactly gonna say ‘ya crap!’ to you are they? ”
No official website has been set up yet, but this reporter believes if every gig is this hectic, it’ll only be a matter of decades before people start paying attention to the Arnold sound. Amen to that.
N.B. Whilst this article is written in good humour I really am impressed with Tom and his music. It is actually quite clever, catchy and is overflowing with potential. Shockingly, I kid you not.