Saturday, October 08, 2011

Bookmarks - internet stuff: Glenn Danzig

The Daily Cross Hatch talks to Tom Neely, creator of that Henry Rollins/Glenn Danzug comic:

Knowing what you know about Danzig as a person, did you really expect him to be excited about that book?
No, no. I didn’t know what to expect. When Jay was on his way to interview him, we were speculating. He’s either really gonna be pissed or he won’t give a shit. But it was something weird and in-between. He was like, ‘I don’t give a shit,’ and he wouldn’t even look at it, and then he went on this weird rant, calling us “stupid Internet hipsters.”

Gordon in the morning: Hero takes a tumble

Gordon has news of an exciting crossover:

GARY Barlow plans Something Special – recording a song with the kiddie TV show's Mr Tumble star Justin Fletcher.
You can see the logic - Tumble appeals to kids; some of Barlow's fans are yet to shade into menopause. Can it really be true?
Justin, a favourite on children's channel CBeebies, revealed he and Take That star Gary have discussed working together after first meeting at last year's Children's Baftas bash.
Oh. So it's not exactly a "plan", then?
Justin said: "Gary broke off his tour to present a couple of the awards and said he would only come if he could meet Mr Tumble.

"We met afterwards, became friends and have talked about working together. It would be amazing to do a charity single with Gary, he's a lovely guy with a lovely family."
So, at best, there's been a few vague chats about the possibility of working together. I'm sure Mr Tumble wouldn't be trying to put pressure on Barlow by announcing something that's still a vague idea, right?

Friday, October 07, 2011

Bono pays tribute to Steve Jobs

The loss of Steve Jobs is a bit of a shame; a man who ran a technology company and was a force for good in design has died, cruelly early.

Bono has been so moved he felt the need to reach for bombastic overstatement:

In a world littered with dull objects, he brought the beauty of clean lines and clear thought. This rhyme of intellect and intuition could be applied to a wide range of subjects from the US education system, to sculpture, to the fight against HIV/AIDS where his support of (RED) literally transformed the lives of two million people in Africa.
Now, his support for Bono's 'don't worry, just buy stuff' charity may or may not have been a good thing - but how can Bono demonstrate that Jobs' involvement literally transformed two million lives?

Bono also said Jobs was the "hardware software Elvis", although surely his role was more a Colonel Parker?

Michael Jackson tribute turning into poorly-executed shambles

When they said they were going to pay tribute to Michael Jackson, who knew they were going to focus on the 'quite often didn't turn up and when he did it was disappointing' aspects of his career.

Parts of the plan have been dropping off like arms falling from a Thriller Zombie. We've had Kiss quit after they remembered how they'd slagged Jackson off.

Yesterday, the Black Eyed Peas announced they won't be in Wales this weekend:

"Due to unavoidable circumstances, the Black Eyed Peas will be unable to perform at this Saturday's Michael Forever event," said Chris Hunt, head of Global Live Events which is staging the concert.
Hey - "unavoidable circumstances" is no way a sign that they couldn't even be arsed to come up with an excuse.

Today, domestically violent Chris Brown said he wouldn't be coming, either, as he couldn't get a visa. But just as the organisers of Michael Forever were absorbing this good news came another problem: the company which had promised to run the gig as a pay-per-view event through Facebook has said it won't be:
Due to legal challenges brought by the music labels that own the rights to Michael Jackson’s lyrics, we have been notified by concert promoters Global Live Events and Ridgeline Entertainment that the live Facebook broadcast of the Michael Forever tribute concert has been cancelled. As the technology provider behind the live Facebook broadcast, Milyoni will fully refund all customers who pre-purchased access to the concert using Facebook Credits or PayPal.

“While social media presents a new opportunity for artists and concert promoters to reach global audiences, it is still a new and disruptive frontier ripe with challenges. Milyoni will continue to work closely with our music and entertainment partners to pursue this new channel of distribution, beneficial to both artists and fans worldwide.”
That's literally several people being mildly disappointed.

Embed and breakfast man: The Joy Formidable

From last night's Letterman: The Joy Formidable:

[Buy: The Big Roar]

Gordon in the morning: Model home

Oddly, Gordon is leading this morning on a story about Britain And Ireland's Next Top Model. Sure, it has a tangental link to JLS, but I don't recall ever having seen BINTM getting such prominence in Bizarre ever before.

Could it be because Jade Thompson, this cycle's winner, is far more interesting than any of the previous winners?

"I wanted to say hello when the band came off stage because he [Ortise]'s a nice bloke and I haven't met him in person yet. But I'm really loved up with my man."

Could it be because the most recent series was the first one to broadcast on Living after its acquisition by Sky?

Thursday, October 06, 2011

MOBOs 2011: Yes, they happened

First off, this lot were robbed in the jazz category:

As to the actual winners... well, there's a lot for Jessie J. Now, admittedly, at the Brits next year she's going to struggle to beat out Adele, but the point remains: Given a chance to differentiate themselves from the Brits, to follow a more credible route, they've instead chosen to fawn over success. There's no way an awards ceremony which ends with Jessie J asking the organisers if they've got a box she can put her prizes in has any claim to be offering any sort of alternative to anything.

For what it's worth, here's where the prizes went:

Best UK act: Jessie J

Best newcomer: Jessie J

Best hip hop/grime act: Tinie Tempah

Best video: Spaceship, Tinchy Stryder and Dappy

Best international act: Rihanna

Best song: Do it Like a Dude, Jessie J

Best album: Who You Are, Jessie J

Best reggae act: Alborosie

Best jazz act: Kairos 4Tet

Best African act: Wizkid

Best gospel act: Triple O

Best R&B/soul act: Adele

Outstanding contribution to music: Boyz II Men

Gordon in the morning: That's Christmas ruined

Mariah Carey has ruined Christmas once. Now, she's ruining it all over again:

JUSTIN Bieber is living every girl's dream – he's recording a Christmas song with Mariah Carey.

The teen star will feature with the diva on a new version of her 1994 hit All I Want For Christmas Is You.
Because the original wasn't shrill enough.

Hey, there's going to be nothing icky about a forty-one year-old woman singing a love song to a - what is he, thirteen? - year-old boy child. Is there?

Gordon, can you make this prospect any more unpleasant?
At least Justin will have a couple of new places to hang his tinsel.
Oh, yes. You've managed it.

Magnapop: Slowly me again

Magnapop getting back together isn't a big deal. Well, it was, when it happened in 2002, but as a reunion that's lasted nearly a decade, it's pretty much business as ususal.

What is exciting, though, is the original line-up of Magnapop getting back together. Don't worry, it's not a Sugababes battle of the iterations; Sharon Mulvaney and David McNair are coming back for one gig, in aid of Criminal Records in Atlanta. Paste reports:

According to Mulvaney:

“The inspiration behind bringing back the original lineup was that back around when our first record and singles came out, Criminal carried them. It was a big deal for us being a local band at the time to see the posters up and to tell your friends you could buy the record at Criminal. The idea behind the show was to try and create a bill that might have happened back in 1991 back around when our record came out.”
Which is the sort of gesture that makes you wonder if you could get to Atlanta easily.

It might also make you wonder if stressing how important a record shop was twenty years ago actually helps with the fundamental problem of how it can find a role in 2011, but the important thing is buying some breathing space.

Wednesday, October 05, 2011

RIP: Bert Jansch

Just heard the bad news about the death of Pentangle's Bert Jansch. Fuller obituary to follow later today.

Bring Me The Horizon chased off their own stage

It all went a bit wrong on the Bring Me The Horizon US tour, with 0liver 'call me Oli' Sykes being chased off stage by the audience.

And which frightening, lawless inner-city crowd were reduced to violence by BMTH?

Erm, Salt Lake City.

Here's some shaky footage of the event:

Sykes had challenged fans who'd been tossing bottles to either go home, or face him directly. That was a bad call, as the audience took him at his word and rushed the stage.

Things got even more miserable, as half an hour after order was restored, the band returned to the stage and chugged through the rest of their set.

Motownobit: Marv Tarplin

Marv Tarplin, one of Smokey Robinson's Miracles, has died.

Besides his guitar work on the records, Tarplin was a writer, collaborating with Robinson on this:

Tarplin had joined Motown at the end of the 1950s, originally as a backing guitarist for The Primettes (The Supremes as they would become later). Robinson spotted his talent, and grabbed him for the Miracles. When Smokey went solo, Tarplin originally planned to stay with The Miracles, but within a year was back besides Robinson. He would stick with him until his 2008 retirement.

The cause of death has not been made public; Marv Tarplin was 70 years old.

Kanye West wants us to be gentle

Kanye West revealed his ladies wear collection at Paris Fashion Week a couple of days ago, to snorts of derision. They were fair enough snorts, to be honest: some of the designs would have shamed a contestant on the first week of Project Runway.

What's amusing, though, is Kanye's apparent awareness that he was pushing substandard clobber:

"Thank you for anybody that didn't believe, because they motivated us to break our boundaries... We don't know what the reviews will be, we don't know what they will say... I gave you everything that I had.

"This is my first collection. Please be easy. Please give me a chance to grow. This is not some celebrity s**t. I don't f**k with celebrities... The amount of people that tried to get me a celebrity f**king deal. They said, 'You need to do boot-cut jeans, or you won't sell.' Shut the f**k up!...

"I thank anybody who came to this party, everybody who supported, everybody who believed, because people thought it was a joke, and maybe people still do, but I can only grow from this point."
Not some celebrity shit, Kanye? Really? How many other designers have their first fashion show at Paris Fashion Week? And if you know it's so bad you have to issue a plea to be "given a chance", maybe you should be doing what everyone else has to do, and take the "chance to grow" while at fashion school, showing your early work in the more gentle climate of a term-end show.

If you're going to shove actual designers out the way, waving your famous face as the shortcut pass, at least have the decency to take the bad reviews on the chin. Being to be given a chance because it's not something you've got experience of doing is really a roundabout admission that you shouldn't be there.

[Thanks to Michael M]

Pete Doherty: Too drunk to filch

You'll recall the record shop break-in in Germany which featured Pete Doherty? He's not going to face prosecution, as the German authorities have accepted Doherty's claim that he was too drunk to remember what happened.

In fact, the Germans have decided that he was too drunk to be criminally responsible for what he was doing. Is that an actual defence in Germany? How do people get pulled up for being drunk and disorderly, then? Wouldn't it encourage people who are a bit drunk to get really drunk to cover themselves in case they do something stupid on the way home?

Still: another bloody lucky break for Doherty. He lives to do something incredibly stupid another day.

Gordon in the morning: Noel Gallagher, shoegazing

The news that Noel Gallagher has "designed" a pair of plimsols for Adidas is neither here nor there:

The former Oasis star is releasing 120 pairs of limited edition Adidas trainers in a couple of weeks' time.

If you are lucky enough to beat the queue at the only shop they are going on sale, Adidas on Newburgh St, London, they will set you back £80.
It's all a contractual arrangement, part of the deal which got Noel to shill from the shoe company last year, but the few they're making, coupled with the bargain basement price gives this the air of "the least I could do."

But the caption on the photo doesn't even have that much engagement:
Ex-shoe-lent ... Noel Gallagher
Ex shoe lent? Ex shoe lent? Are they implying that someone has borrowed Gallagher's old shoes?

Tuesday, October 04, 2011

Kiss try to pretend there's a Lady GaGa duet in their futures

It might surprise you that crappy novelty goods firm Kiss also have a band which puts out records from time to time. It's this endeavour which has led Paul Stanley to try and talk up a Lady GaGa duet:

The frontman said that he wouldn't rule out a duet between the band and the 'Bad Romance' singer, and described her as "terrific".

"Anything's possible," he told LA Weekly. "She's terrific, and it's not improbable."
You'll note that this is a basic scientific fact - a situation could exist whereby Lady GaGa and Kiss were in the same room, singing the same song, at the same time - dressed up to offer a vague impression that maybe something is already happening to bring about this situation.

Embed and breakfast man: Radiohead

They didn't turn up at Occupy Wall Street, but Radiohead did at least manage to swing by Late Night With Jimmy Fallon, a late-night programme with Jimmy Fallon.

Pandora sued for frictionless sharing

You know how, if you use Facebook and Spotify and aren't too careful, how all of a sudden everything you listen to gets pumped out to the wider world? Pandora introduced a similar feature a few months back.

There's now a class action lawsuit being gathered in Michigan, which claims the sudden wittering out of 'now playing' information to the usually-more-public-than-you're-expecting Facebook is a breach of a promise the service made to keep everyone's tastes private. If successful, it could cost Pandora $5,000 a user.

Not quite frictionless, then.

Gordon in the morning: Take That split quietly

You might have thought that, given the way the return of Robbie Williams to Take That was tracked by Gordon, his departure would have created a bit more interest than a story buried half-way down the page.

It's not even Gordon who files the story, with Lucy Connolly instead picking up the tale:

X FACTOR judge Gary Barlow has revealed that Robbie Williams has once again left Take That.

Gary, 40, said the man band's recent reunion "ended perfectly" but they are back to being a four-piece.

And he insisted that some of their fans prefer the group WITHOUT 37-year-old Robbie.
Every inching towards the regrouping was met with a massive story, and yet he slips out the back door quietly with barely a word?

Gordon, meanwhile, has got a photo of some women showing their shoulders and decided that it's a naked picture of the Saturdays:
THE snapper who took this picture of The Saturdays is a clever bloke if he kept the bottom half for himself.

Rochelle, Una Healy, Frankie Sandford, Mollie King and Vanessa White could always use it as their Christmas card to their fellas.

They won't have to worry about any other presents if they include the whole image.
You realise, Gordon, you can have a photo taken of your bare shoulders without having to be completely naked, don't you?

Monday, October 03, 2011

Kaiser Chiefs worried about future of bands like the Kaiser Chiefs

Beer-advert soundtrackers Kaiser Chiefs are worried for the future. Oh, won't someone think of the Sleeperblokes?

Speaking at the BT Digital Music awards, Singer Ricky Wilson told BANG Showbiz: "Necessity is the mother of invention and there will always be music. Whether it will be a viable career for five guys with guitars I'm not sure at the moment but you know, they'll be there in a garage somewhere."

Bassist Simon Rix added: "What you need when you're a band, what it took for us was for a record company to give us a little money to get us on tour in a van, to get people to see us, to like our band, to get us on the radio and the telly.

"That's what record companies do, and how bands get somewhere, but now they don't do that because they never make it back."
Just think about that for a moment: in the world foreseen by the Kaiser Chiefs, a band like Kasabian would forever be trapped in a garage, never getting out to play to the public.

Actually, as post-apocalyptic scenarios go, that doesn't sound so very bad, does it?

Gordon in the morning: No, don't tell me more

It's not just the big splash story on the Bizarre site this morning, but it gets the full "by Gordon Smart, showbiz editor" byline.

What revelation could be worthy of such attention?

Erm, that Wayne Rooney quite likes Grease.

Still, it allows Gordon to attempt to force some gender warfare down our throats:

That's a schoolboy error, Mr Rooney. It's a film for teenage girls.
All of those years sharing a TV remote with Coleen must've affected his mind.

Bizarre HQ will raid the Christmas party piggybank and send him the Die Hard and Rocky box-sets immediately.
Because, naturally, that's what boys watch.

Sunday, October 02, 2011

Another crack at Eurovision

Lys Assia has a firm place in history - if you stretch 'history' enough to include 'pub quiz questions'. She won the very first Eurovision Song Contest in 1956, although as she picked up the prize Terry Wogan insisted her win was just the result of block-voting by German-speaking nations. Probably.

Anyway, now she's back: She's entered a track in the public-selection process to pick the song to represent Switzerland in 2012. Still a very long way from making the finals, it is possible that if she qualifies and wins Eurovision next year recorded time will fold over onto itself using her two victories as fixed points either side of the collapse. Don't say you weren't warned.

Indieobit: Peter Sykes

More grim news, I'm afraid, with a statement from This Many Boyfriends announcing the death of guitarist Peter Sykes:

Our best friend and guitarist Peter Sykes sadly passed away on Tuesday morning. We are all extremely shocked and saddened at the loss of a truly wonderful human being.

We really can't process everything right now as it has been a tremendous shock. We were so very lucky to have even met such a great man and to have shared a stage with him has been a huge pleasure. He was our dear friend and we will miss him.

All our thoughts are with his family at this sad time.

The self-styled "indie pop band from the North" have, understandably, put their plans on hold while they try to cope with the massive shock. Warmest thoughts and commiserations to them.

Punkobit: Maxim Soria

Maxim Soria, the drummer in the original line-up of Valencia, has died in a motorcycle accident.

Soria immigrated to America with his parents when he was four, and grew up in the suburbs of Philadelphia. He joined Valenica - named for the Vonnegut character - at the outset, staying with the band for six years and two albums, and a number of dates across the US and around the world.

Police believe Maxim Soria lost control of his bike and died when he hit a guiderail. He was 28 years old.

This week just gone

The most-read September 2011 stories:

1. Q reaches 25 years, sends silent plea for help
2. Video: Mary Magaret O'Hara - Peanuts
3. What do Kasabian take on tour?
4. The 2011 Popjustice £20 Music Prize
5. RIP: Tom Hibbert
6. Pearl Jam fans patrol Eddie Vedder's copyrights
7. Free downloads: The 4AD sessions
8. Jessie J unaware of PJ Harvey
9. Survey: People want to own music
10. Nick Lowe on Simon Cowell

The new releases from the last time I did one of these (I've been on holidays, don't you know?):

SCUM - Again Into Eyes

Download Again Into Eyes

Howling Bells - The Loudest Engine

Download The Loudest Engine

Slow Club - Paradise

Download Paradise

Laura Marling - A Creature I Don't Know

Download A Creature I Don't Know

St Vincent - Strange Mercy

Download Strange Mercy

Girls - Father, Son, Holy Ghost

Download Father, Son, Holy Ghost

Clap Your Hands Say Yeah - Hysterical

Download Hysterical

The Raincoats - Odyshape

Download Odyshape