Cowbell!

Saturday, 19 May 2007

Lucky Soul
There are times when the indie music scene confuses me. Normally this is when I go to a gig where the headline act plays some seriously good music for dancing but the crowd is far too cool to move in any way from their studied poses of indie cool distance gazing. Thus it was at Lucky Soul, as it has been at some Pipettes gigs. Get Outta Town! is the kind of song which calls for, insistantly and with some serious rhythm, for some good frugging*. I think there were perhaps a score in the crowd actually moving though, and half of them were the Swedes with Montt Mardie.

The chap bought the new Montt Mardie album and tells me it is fabulous, filling in where the live act struggled a little due to the reduced number of band members. Johnny Boy were exceptionally tight and had a powerhouse sound which really drives their songs along. I wasn’t convinced by the songs’ messages (pretty standard smash the system stuff) but the presentation was outstanding. Also, they ended up with a mash up of The Clapping Song (“three, six, nine, the goose drank wine”) and Sheena Is a Punk Rocker.

Lucky Soul were good in almost every way (see proper photos here). Some of the more delicate songs work less well live, partially because the ambient noise of a gig disrupts the mood the songs are going for, but the band has an excellent stage presence, with good banter between songs, and the upbeat tracks are wonderful. Thankfully, like my much adored Pipettes, they are a band who don’t drown the vocals in the live mix and Ali Howard’s voice shouldn’t be drowned. Bush Hall was a perfect venue for them, and I suspect it may remain best gig of the year for me.

*in the sense of the dance, the frug, not suspect chugger behaviour. I really need to start dancing more again.

PS: Whenever I start a new tag now, I’ll be trying to retro-apply it, so if you are reading this via RSS or LJ sub then apologies for the old posts appearing. I just added lucky soul and you dancing? tags.

Music of the Summer

Saturday, 24 June 2006

I’ve just tweaked the sidebar, widening it so that I can put the last.fm ‘recently played’ chart on and dumping a set of links which weren’t terribly interesting.

To generate some listings to test it, I’m playing one of my three albums of the summer so far. Three! That more albums than I buy in some summers. I was cautious about Lily Allen, in that “daughter of a famous person” way. Smile kept making me want to dance though, despite the opening being a close borrow from Night Nurse by Gregory Isaacs, so I grabbed a copy of Always, Still when I could. In my usual way of trying to sum up something as a cross between other things, I’d say she’s a cross between The Selector and The Streets. There’s still a little nagging doubt about some of her ‘urban poor’ lyrics, given her lineage, but it is almost impossible not to start dancing to LDN.

The other two albums are We Are The Pipettes by The Pipettes (well, obviously. Going to see them on the 3rd July in London. Hurrah!) and Victory for the Comic Muse by the Divine Comedy. And, yes, I will be buying the Lily Allen and Pipettes’s albums on CD when they are released.

No, I really ::heart:: the Pipettes

Saturday, 27 May 2006

I’ve had the album since Wednesday (and will by buying it, never fear). And not only can I not stop playing it, each time I play it I like it more.

You know when you first get into music as a teenager, or proto-teenager. You’ve still got puppy fat and there is no way you’re going to get into any real gigs. Hells, for me gigs were mysterious things my elder sibling went to in Coventry in his best mod finery. But you devour songs. You dance around rooms, singing along even if you have no singing voice, because pop music is great. That’s what The Pipettes makes you want to do.

You Had Much Better Dance

Sunday, 18 September 2005

“Come, Darcy,” said he, “I must have you dance. I hate to see you standing about by yourself in this stupid manner. You had much better dance.”

“I certainly shall not. You know how I detest it, unless I am particularly acquainted with my partner. At such an assembly as this, it would be insupportable. ”
Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen: Chapter 3

Just back from the Fforde Ffestival in sunny Swindon. The event was held at the Goddard Arms and, after a few hours in the ‘ballroom’, I looked up to realise that two-thirds the length of the room was, in fact, an old assembly room similar to the type of hall used in P&P. Given how sweltering it was with the electric fans, I dread to imagine the sweatiness trying to dance in it in the C19th.

Fforde Ffestival dancingAfter the Richard III (abridged) play and the auction, the chairs were cleared at one end and the dancing started. Possibly it was the rum with which my drinks were laced* but it seemed suddenly amusing that two hundred years after a hypothetical Darcy would have been glowering at the quadrille dancers, the habitual moves of the Love Shack by the B-52s were being stamped out as the confirmed non-dancers watched in horror.

Right now, having had under 2 hours sleep and with autumn suddenly falling, I am planning to switch on the heating and run a hot bath before doing my emails. I have, the Toast Marketing Board will be delighted to know, had two slices since I got home.

*prompting the inevitable “but why’s the rum gone?” comment this morning.


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