Friday, February 08, 2002

ZIP ZIP UNDO ME: Tucked away in the middle of a piece about Monsters Inc in today's Guardian Review:
"Not many people know that Levi's provided the money for Massive Attack to make Blue Lines, because they were very discreet about it."

Spose its no worse than Dicke Branson bankrolling records, but it still tastes a little bit odd. What was in it for Levi's? Discreet and promotion aren't words that sit easily together, are they?

Also in today's Guardian Review, the following - unillustrated - advert:
"Wanna buy me a soda?"
Charles, Kim, Joey, David
come on pilgrims - reform

Thursday, February 07, 2002

NO GURU, NO SENSE, NO DOUBT: I never thought I'd be keeping my fingers crossed for Enrique Ingleseas to stay at number one, but since the other option is for that godawful Hey Baby getting there, all right thinking people surely must. Way to blow it, Gwen - nobody has given a thirty second theatre about your bunch of Madness-meets-Sleeper muppets since it became clear that Don't Talk was an exception to a rule rather than the rule itself, but you might just have climbed out of the crushing machine in the back of the warehouse when Eve "decided" to get you to guest on the, frankly, earth-justifying Blow Ya Mind. (Yeah, of course it was Eve's idea. Nothing to do with your shared record company looking for a way to relaunch the flagging No Doubt, of course.) Instead, you've come up with a misguided botch together of the cheapstore ska that you know in your heart is all that the doubt are capable of, and a watered down version of the stuff that Eve does. The Northern Alliance have got more hope of holding together than that mixture has, really. It's hard to know what is more sadly hilarious here - the way the rest of the band are still allowed to pop up in press and video, providing they don't get in the way; the monotonous chanting of 'Hey baby hey' in a bid to cover the lack of any idea, any message, any point to the rest of the lyrics; the fish-eyed lens effect used in the video (what, 1970's Top of the Pops just hit the states, have they?), maginfying the grotesque lack of beauty to any of the band apart from Gwen, and the fact that she clearly doesn't care for hers; Gwen's scouser-market guy "Rock" and "Steady" gold rings... all are bad, but the point where any viewer with a heart is forced to sit down and weep tears of blood at how awful it all is is when Gwen makes the "I'm flashing my bra" move again. Like in the Eve video, only where there it was touching and fitted (Gwen being a good girl led astray by Eve, according to the video backstory) here it just slackens the jaw: You really do think that's sexy, don't you? Hey Gweny Hey Gweny Hey... we've all seen bras before, dear. Zip yourself up...

this has gotta hurt - not only has one of "ooh scary clowns" Insane Clown Posse been given a suspended prison sentence, the nme have had to use "Eminem's enemy" rather than "Insane Clown" in the headline, because otherwise nobody would give a shit...

-"In five years, Liam will be the best songwriter in Britain", predicts
Noel. Only if the smallpox outbreak claims more people than the BBC were predicting. Noel also boldly "predicts" that Gareth will win PopIdol. Well, d'uh, the only people who don't seem to know that are the flippers at home who are going to pay money to vote between two people already signed up and working on their debut singles...

Talking of fix-ups the funniest thing is the way hear'say are denying that they "knew" their new member was "a known face." He isn't, for porking out loud - he's some topsy dancer who is dangling from Lisa Step's index finger while she waits to see if she has a solo career (and thus can get to try for a David Duchovny) or if she's about to bomb, and will have to stay lumbered to him.

No Doubt and REM praise Bono with a big show held in his ego, um, honour. Jesus Christ, couldn't they just send a couple of hookers and a picture of him with "You're like a God to us - you're like a God to God" scrawled across it. I mean, No Doubt are and always will be an eager-to-please, punch us we like it band of shite, but REM fawning about the Me Machine? Michael Stipe bending a knee to the Ian Beale of rock? God, it's worse than Grant Hart turning up for a Geri Halliwell love-in, isn't it? Y'see, i can feel a bit sorry for Geri, because when she tramples about through minefields and rubs shoulders with starving children, too dumb to do the "You look like my old mate Victoria" gag, everyone points at her and says "You stupid clunker, you are a silly pop singer, what do you think you're doing?" Which is a fair point, except, when Bono does it, the lickspittles in the media suggest we get together and dig up Alfred Nobel's body to show him the Good That Bono Does. Can't you get it, people - his ego does not need to be poled any more. The man couldn't think any better of himself, couldn't get any smugger, couldn't squeeze any more satisfaction of self into his oh-so-amusing character stage clothes if he'd come up with a cure for cancer or paid off Lesotho's foreign debt or, in short, done something that contributed to the gaiety of nations in any way since The Tube was taken off air. Great Voice ? Great cock, more like it. And don't try and tell me that he raises issues in the minds of his audience, because his gangling ranks of Minidisc chomping underwriters are the sort of Guardian-grazing, wine guzzling chumps who think they know the facts already and aren't going to get off their large, ally mcbeal worshipping arses to do anything about it anyway because they've mistaken the slogan "knowledge is power" for the lie "knowing about an injustice is a step towards correcting it."

Tuesday, February 05, 2002

HEARSAY, YOUR HONOUR: Who on earth would have bothered to audition to fill Kym's hole in the now-almost-defunct Hear'say? It's an honour on a par with the one given to that annoying American who took over Morning Edish when the Bake went to Radio One (i.e. not exactly the sort of job security a mortgage lender would be looking for). And apparently some of the hundreds who turned up to audition are really pissed off - in a way, you can't blame them, since the first thinning out was done on looks alone (second, probably, since anyone with any sense had been ruled out by not bothering to go and join the media circus in the first place); obviously the schedule was pressing and they didn't have time to pretend this time that everyone was in with a chance...

SIX MUSIC FOR ANY PEOPLE: Let's hope this time they stick with it, but the BBC are on the point of launching a music station that sounds like it could have been one of those ideal stations you used to draw up on the back of your school exercise books during dull moments. BBC 6 Music - though restricted to DAB, net and Sky - has a lip-smacking prospect taking it beyond the archive-hugging station that the working titled Network Y had threatened. Instead, while promising to make use of the BBC's music archive (and about time too, of course) the station is going to function a bit like the old Night-time Radio One meets GLR meets the old Radio 5 - indeed, most of the presenters come from those three stations (Liz Kershaw, Janice Long, Long's holiday fill-in Tom Robinson, Sean Hughes, Phil Jupitus) and the promises of performance speak of a station that will still be down the shops each Monday to rummage through the new releases, as well as emerging from the attic carrying long-forgotten Hendrix recordings.
Of course, we could quibble - clearly, Danny Baker should be doing the breakfast show, and it would have been nice perhaps to have a daytime rerun of the previous evening's Peel programme, for example - but the plans seem to offer something coherent (unlike the old Radio 5) and seem to have been a labour of love. We can't be certain until it's launched, of course, but this could be the closest we've yet got to the sounds in our heads being let out into the air.
Coming soon... - Also features Collins and Maconie. Let's hope they get together and recreate the Hit Parade...