(no subject)

I am in receipt of the latest Homocrime bulletin. Trust me, Mirah in particular is a MUST SEE:

DOUBLE FUN! 12th and 16h June

Sunday 12th June (i.e. THIS SUNDAY)
homocrime v unskinny bop
2pm - 6pm
The Pleasure Unit
359 Bethnal Green Rd
£5, £4 with flyer, £3 concessions

THE DISKETTES are just wonderfulness from Vancouver: girls and boys Beat Happening with added Doo Wop and all the playfullness of summer. We saw them last week and swooned (the drummer played on two cardboard boxes). We have been so excited about this gig for so long!!!

WET DOG are of course our favourite thing in London. New songs abound. The most perfect all-girl band since The Raincoats.

STATIONARY is Coral (of Kazoo band Atilla fame, and Weekend
Hairport). She is performing her new piece, dressed as Bio Femme Secretary, playing every PA's essential accoutrements. The photos at are all you need to know until Sunday.

SMARTY PANTS is Holly from Radical Cheerleaders of Manchester fame's new band - casio punk freakout time, we can't wait, I believe its their London debut too!!

DRAGULA is Humey Heena and Clare's boi-band (think the Zombied
Sissyboyz from Manchester). They were the very fine ladies behind Ladyfest Manchester and also instigators of Cafequeeria.

. . . . . .

Thursday JUNE 16
MIRAH (K records)
DJs Lady V (Television Personalities) and Markland (Sleeping States)
Barden's Boudoir, 38 - 44 Stoke Newington Road N16
£5/4 with flyer/3 concessions
doors 7.30pm

MIRAH (ye olde press release):
'Something gentle this way comes...' in the form of K records star and Olympia Washington resident, Mirah Yom Tov Zeitlyn. Having only appeared live once in the UK (with a crowd-stunning set at 2002's Ladyfest London), the intimate nature, and impressive innovation of her records have won Mirah a devoted following of fans in this country and around the world.
Her songs are infused with the political, the sexual and the theatrical - of volcanic eruptions and expansive western skys. Yet the poetic and personal underscore their delivery such that even the most casual listener is caught in her web, a sassy world of desire, heartache and longing wrapped in a bundle of joyous noise. Having worked with the likes of Phil Elvrum (MICROPHONES, MOUNT EERIE) and Calvin Johnson (BEAT HAPPENING, DUB NARCOTIC), her blend of lo-fi sensibility and unbridled vision - where folk music mixes seemlessly with electronica; the subtle with the epic - have created some of the most uncomprimising and original records of recent years.
On this tour, Mirah will sing and play guitar. She will also be
accompanied by friends playing violin, double bass and accordion.
Mirah's latest album, C'mon Miracle is out now on K, and will be
released soon in the UK on Arrivederci Baby! records.

I KNOW I HAVE NO COLLAR make life worth living. Tom and Aaron pull out the stops with keyboards, drums and teacloths and always whip the crowd into a frenzy!

FRANCOIS is loveliness in a young French man with his guitar (and keyboards and samples and drum machine). Maybe he'll bring along his animations too!

TRULY KAPUT rocks our pants off. Why is she the bottom of the bill? Because her leg was on fire.

DJ Victoria is treating us with some choice portions, and Markland will be spinning the dance floor after the show so we may well be having a little dance party!!

. . . . . .

(no subject)

Instead of anything meaningful, here's the six-current-favourite-songs meme. I'm afraid it's a bit repetitive at this moment, because there are two albums I'm listening to more than anything else...

1. Bikini Kill 'Reject All American' (so catchy!)
2. Electrelane 'Eight Steps' (so thrilling!)
3. Electrelane 'I Keep Losing Heart' (so pretty!)
4. Electrelane 'Bells' (so tuneful!)
5. Bikini Kill 'Tony Randall' (so mod!)
6. Little Richard 'Get Down and Get With It' (this one I heard for the first time yesterday - I HAVE TO GET THIS RECORD.)

OK, maybe I'll do it again sometime & it'll be a bit more varied.

(no subject)

I am watching the TV movie of Nick Fury, Agent of SHIELD, made a few years back with David Hasselhof in the lead role. It's terrible, of course, but in a good way. The SHIELD comic was a mid-60s, James Bond thing - only with a hard-bitten, cigar-chewing American instead of a suave Englishman. Hasselhof is surprisingly apt casting, and there are lots of nods to the comic in the dialogue and design. Shame they didn't go for the full-on psychedelic look of Jim Steranko's run on the comic, though. It's all a bit gung-ho-military. The villains are the son & daughter of Nazi bad guy Baron von Strucker from the comic, and their fake German accents and 80s hair are a joy.

Electrelane again

Bloody hell, there's some startling stuff on this album. More of the choir arrangements they tried last time, lots of different instruments. Beautiful little melodies. It's amazing.

(Lots of Ros on it, too!)
  • Current Music

(no subject)

I'm listening to the new Electrelane album, Axes. As always, there's a Krautrocky feel to it, but while the insistent 4/4 rhythms and little piano flourishes still remind me of Neu, there's now a Faust-ish glee in the variety of ideas, sounds and atmospheres. Along with their unabashed rock'n'roll rush, and occasional singing in Verity's unassuming, slightly fragile voice. Recorded sparsely (and live), it's got a band-in-a-room sound to it a bit like the first Gang of 4 album (or the first Ramones album, come to that). Not the surf-able wave of noise they unleash live, but full of colour and light which can get lost at high volume.

Enough comparisons already. This is a beautiful record.

(no subject)

This week's celebrities in our store have included Charlie Higson (very unassuming, didn't realise it was him until I looked at his credit card) & his son, and Pete Shelley (who comes in fairly regularly, but is always worth mentioning). But these are eclipsed by E, an ex-colleague who now works in an architecture bookshop. Yesterday she served Laurie Anderson and her boyfriend LOU REED. Lou fucking Reed! They were really nice, she said. So I guess he's only nasty to journalists. Heh heh.

(no subject)

Stop press!

SOUL MOLE IS OFF. Ed just came in & told me the Enterprise cancelled his booking without telling him!!

[EDIT]: Ed's waiting to hear more, though it's not looking hopeful. I suggest a gathering someplace else if necessary?

(no subject)

Regular readers will know that Electrelane are my favourite UK band, probably my favourite band anywhere. I first saw them three years ago, not knowing much about them except for a short interview which didn't make them sound particularly interesting. At that show and several subsequent ones, I was flattened by their power. They gave the impression of fashioning some invisible energy-beast out of their collective nerves and fears, like the Id monster in Forbidden Planet.

Early last year I saw them at the Spitz and all shyness was gone. They tore the place up like few bands I've ever seen, full of confidence, blasting their Link-Wray-meets-Neu songs with frightening energy.

Sometime last year their bass player Rachel left, and Ros from Lesbo Pig was asked to join. People who've only seen Ros playing simple guitar chords in Lesbo Pig might be surprised to know that she is a classically-trained multi-instrumentalist. Last week, I finally got to see her play with Electrelane.

It was apparent from the first notes that Ros has had an effect on the band. While keeping the skeletal structures of their music, she has wrapped small intricacies around those bones, and the bass and keyboard play off each other now in a way they didn't before. The combination of this increased delicacy with their brutal energy has taken the band up a level. S, who had scarcely heard them before, was astonished by this show as I had been that first time back in 2002. It was awe-inspiring. My favourite band just got better.

Happenings twelve years' time ago

Over at Tammy's on Friday, she dug out some old videos which I'd either forgotten about, or didn't know existed until last week. She'd intended to do a college video project on riot grrrl, but never finished it, and the tapes went into a box for over ten years.

There is footage of the Voodoo Queens and Bloodsausage playing small, early shows in 1992 or '93, and of a riot grrrl meeting at Bunjie's coffee bar (R.I.P.) with members of freddster's old band, Hissyfit. Most astonishing, though, was her film of a daytime show at the Conway Hall. I just created a detailed chronology of that time for Sara's book research, so I can tell you that this show took place on Wednesday March 3rd 1993. The lighting is really clear, because it's in the day, and the sound isn't bad. She filmed a couple of songs each by Avocado Baby (not their best stuff, but Pete looks fetching in a wig and dress), Pussycat Trash, and Huggy Bear ('Pop Scorch' and 'Into the Mission'), well into their non-fun phase unfortunately.

Mainly, though, there's three or four songs by Bikini Kill. It sent shivers down my spine to see this band again, clear as day and as powerful as I remember them.

It is strange, setting out and re-evaluating all the events of that time again. Puts a lot of what I'm doing now into context. It was an exciting time, but there's more fun and creativity to be had in the grrrl-inspired scene now than there was at the time. The last three years have really changed my life.