Tuesday, 27 October 2009

Pulp For Glasto?

Will they?

Won't they?

I don't think I've ever heard as many people talking about 90s Britpop band Pulp as there have been in the past couple of weeks. Depending on which publication you read, Jarvis and co. may be likely to grace the stage of Worthy Farm once more at next year's festival, their first performance in over 6 years. The People have claimed that Cocker confirmed that Pulp were to reform and are interested in playing Glastonbury next year: "Glastonbury means an awful lot to me, I would love to play there again.” When asked if there were any plans in the pipeline to see Pulp potentially repeat Blur's success at playing a comeback gig at Glasto, he said; “We’ve talked about it, there we go, there’ll be a band reunion.”

However, in separate reports on both teletext page Planet Sound and in an interview with the front man himself on BBC 6 Music today, it seems that this is not the case. Cocker has dismissed these rumours, stating that he had never said that Pulp were going to reform in the first place, only that he was "interested in playing at the 40th anniversary."

So I guess we'll just have to wait and see. I think it would be great to see Pulp do Glastonbury, I was too young to see them perform live back in their heyday, so it would be a great chance for them to remind us all who the real diamonds in the Britpop crown truly were, as well as potentially widening their fanbase to those not yet in the know of this great indie band.

My biggest regret about Glastonbury this year was that I missed out on the chance to see a newly reformed
Blur headline the Pyramid, if Pulp do play next year- I shan't make the same mistake again.

In the meantime, here's one of my favourite Pulp tracks, recorded live at Glastonbury circa 1995, enjoy.

Saturday, 24 October 2009

Morrissey was rushed to hospital earlier this evening after collapsing just one song into his gig at Swindon's Oasis.

Morrissey just minutes before he collapsed, taken from SwindonWeb

Reports state that in the midst of opening song This Charming Man, Morrissey knelt down and fell to the floor, to be taken offstage by members of his band. An hour and a half later, a representative from the venue said that Moz would not be returning to the stage as he is "seriously ill."

Sky News has stated that the former Smiths frontman has been admitted to the Great Western Hospital and is in a "stable condition". Ambulance personnel have since reported that Morrissey suffered from "respiratory problems" before becoming unconscious, but by the time they arrived at the Oasis, he had regained consciousness but was complaining of feeling unwell.

The 50 year old has suffered with various ailments over the past couple of years, having previously cancelled a string of London gigs on his UK May tour, due to a problem with his throat.

I really wanted to be at that gig, and if it wasn't for the price of the tickets and lack of transport I would have been. I hope Mozzer is ok, have been listening to the back catalogue of The Smiths all day and have been reminding myself of how truly amazing Mr Morrissey is both lyrically and vocally. So, since it's been about 6 months or so since my last Smiths track on this little blog of mine, here is the song Morrissey struggled through earlier, This Charming Man. One of their best I believe, showcasing both the virtuosity of Marr's musicianship and Morrissey's witty yet slightly poignant lyrics.

Get well soon Moz!

Sunday, 18 October 2009


What's this- a CHEERFUL Editors song?!

Surely not, I mean this is the band who make Glasvegas seem like giddy Highland schoolgirls. But, lo and behold, it seems Editors have finally awoken from their melancholic slumber with new track Papillon.

Ok, so it's basically a New Order track and in that respect isn't exactly innovative, but at least it's a change in direction. If you ask me, I think the time has come for miserable lachrymose music to descend back into its underground lair for another year. With the days getting shorter and winter's unyielding grip on us starting to clench ever tighter, we don't need anything else to bring us down.

Gloom is SO 4 months ago.

What we need now is something upbeat, something perky, something- dare I say it- happy. What we need is something that we can bust a move to, or at least nod our heads along casually to without looking like the lame emo kid in the corner. And this is what the new offering from the Brummy band does, it makes us want to enjoy music again; because lets face it, not every song is meant to be a 3 minute therapy session. It is ok to actually listen to a song and not take any other meaning from it than the fact that it's just a great track.

So the new track from Editors may be a synth drenched Blue Monday rip off (in my opinion), but at least it's a GOOD synth drenched Blue Monday ripoff. And that's enough for now.

Papillon is out now, available on 7" and CD format.

Tuesday, 13 October 2009

Welcome to the Funhouse

I've been meaning to start my regular new bands feature for a while, but never had the time or energy to actually do it. Should this post actually manage to work, I will aim to make this a weekly/monthly thing, giving you my lovely readers a taste of the prime musical meat on the market at the moment. First up on the chopping block- it's the thoroughly mysterious Alex Gladwell.

This lovely chap may have titled his debut Fantasia, but there's something much more twisted about this carnival..

That is pretty much all I know about this guy. His name, the name of the LP and the producer. Ooo mysterious. On his site there is no further information, and when requested for a little bit of bio for this post was humbly denied- it seems to me that he is definitely in this for the music and not status of any sort.

A lot of the tracks on Fantasia are equally intriguing. The repetitive Intro draws you in, it's drone like quality almost hypnotic, quite the opener. Bluntly named Song has all the traits of a good Hip-Hop track; a catchy beat and simple bass line, not to mention Alex's slightly husky vocals. Song is the kind of, well, song that I can imagine being played in a rather upscale club a few years from now, definitely one of the finer tracks on the LP.

The only thing I did notice was just how synthesised the arrangement is. Whether he's trying to go for a synth vibe (which may not prove beneficial if he wants people to stand up and take notice, there's far too much synth these days; along with legwarmers and Thatcher, it belongs in the 80s) or it's just because he doesn't have the facilities available to create a more raw sound, I think the electronic feel to many of the tracks is quite overwhelming. It's clear this guy has an amazing voice and the lyrics are genuinely refreshing, but the sheer tinny timbre of some of the tracks, most noticeably Slowly Barely, slightly diminishes the wow factor. I do however like how it has an almost primal sense of urgency right from the start of the track, Alex's voice a splurge of emotion.

Contrastingly, Gladwell has also managed to show his lighter side with some of the more upbeat stuff. Tracks like Gospel actually made me laugh out loud. I was certainly not expecting to hear Weird Al Yankovitch on an acoustic LP! There are also flashbacks of Mickey Mouse in Alex's falsetto that amuse me to no end. Besides that, this song has a lot of promise, the xylophone riff towards the end of the track adds a touch of clarity, making for a rather recumbent outro. And I always like a good xylophone.

In theory, I shouldn't like Ain't that the Way: Accordions and I have never been the best of friends. Nevertheless, I actually adore this song. It's the least synthesised track on the album; the accordion riff almost wistful, and although sounding a bit like background music to a Final Fantasy game, it's quite beautiful and the vocals manage to create a reflective but almost romantic atmosphere- of course its very use reeks of the French cliche. And I have to say, listening to some of his lyrics, he has a point.

Overall, I think this LP is a gem, albeit a rough one at the moment. With the different musical styles working together to form a uniquely fresh sound, (the only comparison I can think of would be Santogold based purely on musical diversity: African, Indian, Hip-Hop and Indie all feature briefly on this record) plus Alex's charming and slightly terrifying vocals, this album is a must for anyone who wants a breath of fresh air.
Go on, give him a go, you may be surprised..

Find the rest of his tracks here.

Wednesday, 7 October 2009

My Secret Friend

Here's the new video from sleazy synth band IAMX, My Secret Friend.

Chris Corner makes for an oddly attractive woman.

I love it, it's as dark and sensual as ever, but isn't as primal as some of their other stuff, which makes for a nice change. I think it's definitely a track that will grow on you over time, as the lack of urgency that seems to be present in most of their other work isn't really a factor here; this isn't exactly a track that grabs you by the hair and spins you around in circles until you vomit. Nevertheless, I think it's a great track to relax to, mayhaps whilst drinking cocktails of some sort in a swish French discotheque.

What do you think?