Sarah Nixey at the Luminaire

sarah nixeyIf you don’t already know, Sarah Nixey is the former vocalist of utterly ace Black Box Recorder. She’s been making waves with a small solo career recently, if you’ve not heard her in simplest terms think Sophie Ellis Bextor with a Phd. It’s intelligent pop music when on the album, but live it’s a whole other experience as her band transform the music into hypnotic electro stompers.

Now I’m involved because Sarah is playing the Luminaire in Kilburn on Wednesday night, and I will be the gig DJ. I’m quite excited because this will be a gig where I don’t have to make the audience dance. I can play anything I want – and I think that may turn out to lie quite majorly around Scandanavian, obscure 80s or motown music. A fun combination I dare say. Also playing are two bands I know nothing about – the electronic Trademark and the special looking Mister Solo.

So my dears, I’m telling you all this because if you are in London then you should come along! Tickets are on sale for £6 or £7 on the door. Also I have some guestlist so message me for that!

For more about Sarah, the ever brilliant XO London has an interview with her.

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Yesterday I went to the Spice Girls press conference at the Vue Cinema in the 02 in Greenwich. Not very handily located for the mainly W1 based press crew, the location was all based around some strange longitude/latitude thing the pr company had come up with. The conference was due to start at 12.30 but was delayed till slightly after 1 (some say due to the cinema not being full enough) . Richard E Grant introduced a video to ‘remind’ us who the Spice Girls were, and then brought them on stage.

  • The photographers were allowed 5 mins of flash time with all the girls together before the talky bit of the conference began. It was a bit chaotic, with people shouting “VICTORIA! VICTORIA OVER HERE! LOOK RIGHT!” constantly. This seems to have lead to no photos having them all looking in the same direction. As the paps were told to sit down, one of them collapsed and all the photographer started taking photos of this dude on the floor. It was completely inexplicable.

  • Victoria’s breasts looked ridiculous, Mel C still had that bad fringe, Geri was hippy but amazing, Emma was mega pregnant, and Mel B looked hot!

  • I was a bit scared to ask anything because of my bloody beef.

  • Victoria barely said anything, to the point where Mel B had to prompt her directly. Geri basically took over.

  • Mel C looked a bit uncomfortable all the way through it. She was only there because Geri “had a gun under the table”

  • Emma looked the dictionary definition of a beaming mum to be.

  • They did actually seem like a bunch of friends meeting up for the first time in ages pissing about. It was just like being back in 1996.

Anyway, everything is in the news. You know the score. But it was utterly amazing to be there. I was a massive fan of the band in their day (just ask to see my special scrapbook!) and it was hard to not whoop and squeak all the way through it. Seriously one of the best hours of my life. Photos here onwards.

Review: Kelly Clarkson – My December

kellySo label boss Clive Davis hates this album so much he offered Kelly $10 million to drop five tracks and let them be replaced by Dr Luke ones. That’s some hatred! It’s not an easy album to like by any means but if you give it a chance I really think it will grow on you.

Despite the darkness, My December isn’t completely full of slow burning slowies. While bouncy, the 80s influenced “One Minute” sounds like it could have come off any Ashlee, Lindsay identikit rock-pop album, the best stomper is “Judas”. A woman betrayed, Kelly sings with passion over a pulsating guitars and a synthy verse.

Read the rest at BBC Music

MY IDOL RETURNS

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“The Spice Girls are set to make an official announcement to the world regarding future plans on Thursday 28th June.”

This is one press conference I am making sure I am at. ! x 1 million. I’m a bit scared the whole thing is going to be an unparallelled disaster, but I’m currently unable to concentrate with excitement.

Get to Know You Better Baby!

I’ve finally started reading the amazing It’s a Trap blog which kind of aggregates all Scandinavian music news – new songs appearing, tour dates and the like. Anyway it just reminded me of the existance of Junior Senior. In the UK they’ll probably only be remembered for Move Your Feet which hit #3 in 2003, but both “Itch You Can’t Scratch” and “Can I Get Get Get” are even better which makes me think their albums could possibly be amazing. Are they worth buying?

Here is the video for “Can I Get Get Get” which had Junior Senior teaming up with friend of the Karinski household JD Samson of Le Tigre. It’s a cute, little rapping song which just oozes happiness and has become a favourite of ours to play at Miss-Shapes. Although the video isn’t that amazing (despite featuring a cameo from Peaches), it’s worth a look just to hear the brilliant song.

[youtube]http://youtube.com/watch?v=BtKAKKPZr04[/youtube]

I’ve never managed to catch them live, but now they’re on my must see list. If you’re in America though you’re in luck as they’ve just announced 4 dates. Laurie, Greg –  get your asses to Popscene on  Aug 16 and report back 🙂

Wooping at the Shizotechque

Alexander BardAs much as it pains me, actually pains me, to say it, I shall be taking a trip to the sinful container of G-A-Y on July 21st. I’ve been once before to see Sophie Ellis Bextor, and while it wasn’t as dreadful as I was expecting, I do not want to live the life of a traitor.

But on that date something marvellous is happening: the amazing Alcazar are playing. Alcazar probably kick started my love of Scandanavian pop with the camp disco classic “Crying At The Discoteque”. Rik and I used to play it near on every week on our student radio show “Lost In Music” so long along back in 2000 partly because we loved it and partly because our fellow student radio buddy Pat found it a little annoying (but this is a man who played “Help Me! I’m a Fish” constantly for about a month so his opinion is not to be trusted.)

Accompanying Alcazar will be fellow Swedes BWO and Army of Lovers. Now rest assured, if you don’t like Alcazar, you won’t like these bands as they’re all produced by Alexander Bard (who’s in both AoL and BWO).

There’s a veritable posse of us going, so you can break through the club pain by being with a group of friends. Fancy it?

Review: Rihanna – Good Girl Gone Bad

rihannaUmbrella” is still number 1, five weeks after release, and amazingly it still hasn’t grown dull. There’s nothing like wandering around town going “ella, ella, ella” continuously. I even heard someone doing it in Paris (from where I have just returned).

Fabulously the album it’s taken from, “Good Girl Gone Bad”, is stonking.

And if New Order weren’t big enough to sample, prepare yourself for the sweltering disco grind of “Don’t Stop The Music”. Finely weaving the hypnotising “ma ma say, ma ma sa” bit of Michael Jackson’s “Wanna Be Starting Somethin” into the melody, by the time it finishes, we dare you not to be racing around the dancefloor arms flailing.

Read my review of it at BBC Music.

Fun x 1000

I foolishly forgot to blog about Tigerpicks – “Disco Punk Electro Funk” when it came out intitally labelling it as a bit messy and a Robots in Disguise rip-off. One thing I never disputed though, was the brilliance of the video.

[youtube]http://youtube.com/watch?v=H4gD_N8PDA4[/youtube]

The Tigerpicks are Frankie, Martyn and Emma, and they’re working with none other than Richard X on their debut album. Naturally this single flopped bigtime on sales, but in reality I’ve never known any little-known track fill a dancefloor so consistantly.

It could be the soundtrack to a computer game, but I think this is kind of what I was expecting Wigwam to sound like. There’s no London dates booked in at the moment but when there are, I SHALL BE THERE.

A Manic Update

When I was 16 I hated the Manics. They stopped George Michael’s “Outside” going to #1 with some old political twaddle and filled my teenage pop blood with rage. Then when I went to university, student radio opened my ears to all music beyond pure pop. And just as most people began to think they’d jumped the shark, Know Your Enemy and the likes of “So Why So Sad” and “Ocean Spray” got me leaping about proclaiming their brilliance.So who would have thought a few years later I’d be reviewing their latest album for the Beeb. I feel a bit uneasy about that review as I don’t really know their heritage that well, but Send Away The Tigers really is a great album. If you’re yet to hear it then try out the grand “Autumn Song” as a taster.

To consumate my new found love, gaypop and I headed up to the barren land of Kentish Town to see MSP play the first of three London dates. The Forum is a pretty nice, large venue, much preferable to the likes of Brixton Academy, and suited the band perfectly. Despite no Nina and a hell of a lot of songs I didn’t know, this certainly chucks itself up my best gigs ever list. Amazing things included (bare in mind I was a Manics gig virgin):

  • The hilarious height difference between Nicky Wire and James Dean Bradfield.
  • Nicky’s gigantic scissor jumps
  • Watching Simon Price going mental to “Stay Beautiful”
  • “You Stole The Sun From My Heart”
  • James singing Nina’s bits in YLAINE in a girly manner.
  • and many more I forgot to write down…

Buy this right now.

Unklejam’s amazing 2nd single is finally out to buy on download this week. Love Ya flopped for no reason but What Am I Fighting For has been everywhere. It it’s not in the charts by the end of next week then my belief in the UK buying public will be withdrawn!

[youtube]http://youtube.com/watch?v=hHmZoULqk78[/youtube]

Camp futuristic disco pop – amazing.