Partying like it’s 2001


Last week the homegirls took a trip back to 2001 to see All Saints play live in Shepherd’s Bush. We’d already seen them once before when they sang dreadfully out of tune at Blackpool’s swanky Winter Gardens but now older and on the comeback tale this, their first gig in 5 years,  was going to be different.

Corporate hosted events are always going to be filled with alcohol, but 3 really pulled out the stops for this. We hadn’t even bothered to press it up and just showed up as normal punters only to meet a shedload of free cocktails followed by a free bar, and more mini food then you could imagine. Nothing beat the chicken caesar salad myspace provided at The Cobden Club the other week, but the jam roly poly with custard nearly did!

Just before the band came on, Tamsin Outhwaite, her hubby, Kate Thornton and someone who looked like a third Appleton barged their way to the front positioning themselves almost on top of us. Naomi got to bump and grind with Outhwaite all night while they whooped and screamed "YAY NATALIE! NICOLE!! HI HI HI HI!". The girls looked the same as ever but had much more credible partners skulking at the back watching them then in olden days with both Liams knocking about.

I like new single Rocksteady a lot, and the other 4 new songs they played sounded equally as good. I’ve not heard them again yet on record so my alcohol blitzed memory can’t really comment on them that much other than they were funky and as Shaznay would put it "had a bad-ass groove".

Rockstarz @ Ghetto

So tonight I did my first slot at Rockstarz, in fact my first night at Ghetto which wasn’t Miss-Shapes, meaning I didn’t have old faithful Girls Aloud to fall back on. Rockstarz is all about guitar music and about live bands. Tonight we had Plastik playing. I was quite nervous about the night – I played by myself (james didn’t really wanna go out) and indie stuff isn’t my home base. I might play at lots of indie nights now but you got to remember I was a girl who grew up on Billie and the Spice Girls 🙂 So, I was flapping to extremes spending all day trying to catch up on new music and then all of my first set completely stressed out.

But, despite it being the end to a weird, sad weekend datewise, it was fun, fun, fun and awesome to play songs I love that aren’t mainstream and have people dance. Popstarz is very much the indie charty songs, but Rockstarz is a lot more open minded. Plus it was cool to play alongside Laurence.

I didn’t write a setlist down but I played ace stuff including Datarock – Fa Fa Fa, Noisettes – Scratch Your Name, Peter Bjorn & John – Young Folk (totally beating Sinclar for whistly song of the year), Veruca Salt – Seether (thanks Kim!), Klaxons – Not Over Yet (hello! Floorclearer!) some Easyworld, Sons and Daughters – Dance Me In, Metric, The Faint, White Rose Movement, plus some other stuff I can’t remember right now. Anyway it was ace! Hopefully I’ll do it again, but in any case check out this list of bands Rockstarz has coming up and at least make sure Dragonnette goes in your diary.

Oct 23 : Plastik
Oct 30: Joana and the Wolf
Nov 6: Eskimo Disco
Nov 13: Dragonette
Nov 20: The Far Cries
Nov 27: Look Look (Dancing Boys)
Dec 12: Shit Disco
Dec 18: Parka
Jan 8:  DiskoBoy
Jan 15: Fleeing From Finales
Feb 5: The Scha La Las

The rest of the weekend was as good as could be. Friday at Popstarz marked our one year anniversary at the club from when we covered from Sandra’s trip away last year and cacked ourselves at the then meant to be one off. Since then i’ve basically ruined the entire night by convincing the rest of the DJs that Kelly Clarkson – Since U Been Gone was an appropriate thing to play (sorry! i’ve stopped now!). :-).

Saturday saw me face the dilemma of one of my favourite clubs just down the road from our house or opting to spend some time in a world where I might meet some men who aren’t gay. I thought of Clare’s words, was strong and took the latter option to party with my Aztec Warrior housemate Naomi and her friends from uni at Rock Garden in Covent Garden which was pretty good fun and contained that element of normality of just dancing to random shit, charty songs that I’d oddly been missing from my hometown days! Alcohol and sickness made homies go home, but 1am was no stopping time for me and I knew Trash Palace would be there for me. 10 mins later and I was on the way to Ghetto (for what? the 7th wigout in 8 weeks maybe???) with Jamie and Nic, before I scarpered off to meet Alex for a bit in Soho House, before dragging him back to Ghetto. We all then got the crazyiest cab in the world back home – I always refuse to get unlicensed cabs but it was 6am and after wandering up and down OCS trying to decide whether to go to Balans for breakfast for 30 mins we just needed to go home.  Anyway said cab did have a licensed sticker, despite trying to pick up randoms on the street and I managed to barter him to £17 for a drop at our house and one in E9. Bargain. The best bit was that the cabbie had made a cd full of total drunk classic songs – I can’t even remember what they were, but they were ace and we all sung along really loudly and loutishly all the way home. Huzzah. On Sunday we all woke up feeling mega shit but a trip to the weirdest restaurant I’ve ever been to which I just had to introduce Alex to, made it all better. The place is LMNT on Queensbridge Road and their Sunday Roasts are ace. I’d recommend that you don’t click that link – just trust me, and go without any idea of what it’s like. It will blow your mind.

Hmmm, that’s a blog taking this back to the self-indulgent days of old wittering about myself. I don’t really write anything about myself anymore for fear of odd, psycho cyber stalkers. But, er never mind!

Miss-Shapes: 19 Oct 06

Not done a setlist for a little while so here is what we played last night in our early set. It got very busy, very early and I enjoyed the early set. Nothing exceptionally new or exciting, just fun. Hooray.

The Clash- Rudie can’t fail
Rumble Strips – Oh Creole
The Raconteurs – Broken Boy Soldiers
Beck – Cellphone’s Dead
Teddybears – Yours to Keep [Nenah version]
Giorgio Moroder – Baby Blue
Gwenno – Dance Alone
Shampoo – Cars
Dead Disco – Automatic
Stefy – Chelsea
Protocol – Where’s The Pleasure
Presets – Are you The One
Fischerspooner – Happy
LCD Soundsystem – Tribulations
Softcell – Sex Dwarf
Peaches – Boys Wanna Be Her
Gossip – Standing in the way of Control
Portabello – Covered in Punk
Bloc Party – Helicopter
Ashlee Simpson – Boyfriend
CSS – Let’s make love
Le Tigre – TKO
Basement Jaxx – Plug it in

Catch us at Popstarz tonight and Rockstarz on Monday!

Spektrum – I’m Not Shy

This is the new video from London dance kids, Spektrum, who you may know from the Zipper hammered Kinda New.

It’s called I’m Not Shy, it’s in the shops now and it’s ripe for some ass-shaking.

Vocalist Lola Olafisoye has the same funk and mischievous voice you may expect to feature on a Basement Jaxx track, but as the lead singer of Spektrum, she gets a bassline with a lot more SQUELCH. You can hear more from them on their myspace page or catch them live at The Great Eastern Hotel on November 24. The album Fun At The Gymkhana Club is out very soon.


In case you haven’t noticed the Radio Times have introduced three regular blogs on their site, after the success of Grace Dent‘s Big Brother blog over the summer. Grace returns with the TVOD blog, while various people, including my friend Jack, contribute to the Why We Watch and The Best…. Alongside odd things on lowculture (more so the forum than the main page though to be honest), I’ve been using these sites to fill my increasing television viewing recently. Off my own steam I’ve redevloped more than a passing mature re-interest in Hollyoaks but a Radio Times review got me watching Jack Dee’s BBC 4 sitcom Lead Balloon which has been providing giggles. If you’ve missed it then you can handily watch it online!

Another ace blog I’ve seen recently is Londonelicious. Writen by an American girl living in London, Kristan writes really friendly, detailed reviews of restaurants around the capital which you can handily view by postcode. Ace for checking somewhere out, and also for suggestions when I’m trying to think of somewhere cool to go.


Last night I went to see Fischerspooner play live in London at Koko. They were ace. Turning last year’s Odyssey show into something resembling their first year shows, they managed to combine theatre and dramatics with being a proper band.

And my interview? Well all my worries were totally unfounded and Casey and I had a great chat about a lot of things including Dolly Parton, a Fischerspooner perfume and Burt Bacharach. The full interview will be online very soon but it was super fun! Yay. I so need to stop gettting mega nervous before interviews, as they always seem to be fine. Three favourite bands down, one to go.

Tv time travel

I appear to have a thing for time travel. Is this common?

While as a child, I, like well probably pretty much everyone, loved Back To The Future and it’s time travelling ways, It’s only recently that I’ve begun to think that if you involve time travel in a TV show, it can’t fail but win my heart.

For starters let’s take Crime Traveller. This shortlived BBC drama series was the first post-Eastenders outing for Michael French before the doors of Holby called. Also starring Red Dwarf’s Chloe Annett, it’s eight episodes told the tale of Detective Jeff Slade (French), police scientist Holly (Annett) and her late father’s Heath Robinson style time machine. The pair flirt a lot, but mainly travel back in time to help solve crimes. Although I’ve recently purchased the idea on DVD, I haven’t watched it yet, so can’t quite remember anything specific other than I loved the show. Unfortunatly it wasn’t very popular, and no one I ever mention it to remembers it!

More recently of course, we have the ace new Doctor Who. Admittedly I’ve only seen Doctor 9 onwards episodes and fell asleep during the only old story I was shown (Robots of Death). But the other great time-travelling success of last year was Life On Mars. Although I didn’t watch it live, I caught it a few months ago and loved it’s mix of crime and comedy. If you’ve not seen it, John Simms plays DI Sam Tyler, a police detective in Manchester, who crashes his car, falls into a coma and wakes up in the 1973. Why, is unknown, but we’ll no doubt find out. As he struggles to find a way back into his real life, Sam has to get used to the spectacularly different police world of the seventies very quickly with bullying boss DCI Gene Phillips and the only person he’s told about his predicament, WPC Annie Cartwright. I’m not really sure what else I’ve seen John Simm in, but I think he’s brilliant in this show. Alongside a great cast is an awesome set with a sense of the smoky, seedy sixties Manchester excellently created.

Today brings news that series 2 of the show will be it’s last. While I don’t want to spoil series 1 for anyone who hasn’t seen it, for me it ended a little unsatisfactory. Although I’ll be disappointed there won’t be more episodes, perhaps it is best to resolve the mystery in a decent time span rather than dragging it out for years.

Finally, of course, we have new Doctor Who spinoff Torchwood launching on BBC Three on October 22. A bus with the giant Robin Hood advert replaced with Torchwood drove past our house on Friday and we all squealed with excitement. I’ve no idea what it’s going to be like or whether I can get over the memory of John Barrowman snogging lots of girls in …Maria a few weeks ago, but I enjoyed the character of Captain Jack so am looking forward to it. Will it be the Angel to Doctor Who’s Buffy and end up way better than the parent show itself? At time of writing the Torchwood site requires a password to proceed but I don’t know what it is. Any ideas?

Bargain Bin: It’s a Girl Thing, with the right swing

In a world post Spice Girls and mid-Steps/S Club, record labels were scrambling about all over the place trying to sign the next big pop group.

Before Girls Aloud came along in 2002, there were two other Girl… groups – who tried their very best to fill the gap, but ultimately failed. Like much good pop that fails, it doesn’t mean their songs were the problem.

The first of these were Girl Thing who burst onto the pop scene in 2001. Looking colourful, lively and not afraid to speak their minds, these were girls who were 14 when Geri and co. appeared and were put together by the men who the Spiceys famously quit in their early days – Chris and Bob Herbert. And my couldn’t you tell. There was one with blonde bunches and puppy dog eyes, a shouty Yorkshire one and they all had distinct styles and personalities that liked to be looooud.

They were great because:

1. One of their members was Jodi Albert – Hollyoaks brilliant Debbie Dean and superior Nadine-a-like.

2. One of them was from Blackpool and went to Hodgson High.

3. One of them had pink hair.

[I wrote this post in July but never finished it. Now I see Del has posted his own blog about Girl Thing. Seriously, what are the chances someone else I know would both about a random, defunct girl band. Grrrh. If I write anymore it will copy his so just er read his.]

This is the video to their first single – the still ace Last One Standing which charted at #8 in July 2000. Only one more song, Girls On Top, would follow until they were carted off to the dumper after a really, not too bad chart of #25. They would ‘famously’ go on to be the band who got pissed off when Hear’Say released Pure and Simple as they recorded it first. The other ‘Girl…’ group I was going to mention was Girls@Play but I can’t seem to find anything about them, or even my own Mp3 to mention them. Anyone got them out there?

As if to say, he doesn’t like chocolate

Every year there’s some indie bands that make it and some that don’t. 2005 was the year of Kaiser chiefs, Bloc Party and Maximo Park while 2006 has been The Automatic, The Fratellis and Boy Kill Boy.

When Bloc Party arrived on the scene, they were lauded by all and sundry including the BBC who declared them second in the sound of 2005 poll (behind The Bravery (snork!)). At first Silent Alarm didn’t do that much for me. Sure, it was competant indie but Ricky had gone on about it so much I was expecting a revolution.

Over a year on though and Silent Alarm is totally holding it’s own. DJing can leave you bored of some songs – while you love them at first, playing them over and over and over again every week can make them tire really quickly, but not Bloc Party’s. Both Banquet and Helicopter fill the dancefloor and get nearly everyone dancing. And the best bit: they still don’t bore me! Hooray! (Plus Banquet has an ace ending which makes it sound like you’re doing some rad mixing even when you’re not)

So, as old as this may be, I was mega excited to hear the Santa Monica mix of Helicopter this week. Produced by a Portugese DJ who I don’t know anything about, this takes away all the frantic, rushing urgency from the track, and replaces it with summery acoustic guitars. Perfect to hear alongside the sunset at Mambo.

The Yellow Stereo
has a copy if you’re yet to hear it. It’s ace.