Saturday, 27 November 2010

The Best Riffs of All Time ... really.

Sooner or later, I would have to do this post. I've been compiling a mental list in my head after listening all week to Zane Lowe's "Masterpieces" show, where he unbelievably has been playing whole LPs (albums in other words) of some of the classic Popular music albums to ever grace this earth. The first; I was simply astonished that Radio 1 has such good tase (well, namely, Zane Lowe) with the White Stripes' classic Elephant. The next day was another enlightening experience for me- The Smiths' The Queen is Dead. Hearing both very established and beautiful pieces of work all the way through, no interruptions was a rite of passage. I recommend the programme, Radio 1 can be accessed all over the world, you have no excuse! Zane Lowe's cute. He's an indie snob, but aren't we all at times? If you're into that kind of thing. So, I'm in a mood for a list (I'm slighty OCD in certain things, that's why I'm a snob in certain things like riot grrrl and Pearl Jam- freaky)

Without further ado, here is a list of the best riffs of all time, that make us feel ecstatic, excited, tingle, sad or crazy. They should all have the impact to make us dance like idiots. Chosen by sheer musical power they were selected by my mum, Last.Fm, any thing I've heard of people's opinions. and I, pretty much off the top of my head. Prone to disagreement, but see how many you agree on, or what I've missed out that's 'disgraceful'. It's all a matter of fun :D

The Oldies (from the beginning of time, into our hearts forever)

Derek and the Dominoes- "Layla"

No disagreement? I thought not. One of the only singe-able riffs, melody lines in the history of music. Makes us all feel good and scream as high and loud as we possible can when at a wedding or so "LAAYLAA!!" It's so god damn beautiful, it's makes my spine tingle with anticipatement.

Cream- "Sunshine of Your Love
One that every dad in the room can go : " da da da da da da da da daaaa da" to. A song that has that power is a song worth listing.

Blue Oyster Cult- "(Don't Fear) The Reaper"

My mum's suggestion... very, very ascetically pleasing.

Iggy Pop- "Louie Louie"

Yes. YES, YES, YES. Covered by many a thousand for its simplicity and absolute element of KICK-ASS. Plus, everybody knows that 'ay, ay, ay, AY' bit at the end of the progression, much loveable. I realise this isn't the original original, but there's been so many, and in my opinion, this one is the best.

The Kinks- "All The Day and All Of The Night"
Every radio station can play it like the world is coming to the end... perfect use of this track has to be on the film The Boat That Rocked ... greatest intro to a film ever.

Guns'n'Roses- "Sweet Child O' Mine"

Did I even need to confirm this? I think that guitar stabs everyone in the heart everytime with its beauty.

Guns'n'Roses- "Paradise City"

To feature on the list twice in one list means almost royalty. I think this song should be America's national anthem.
Okay, well Axl Rose is an idiot, but the music's good, and they made it twice on this godly list, so hell, they must be good.

Jimi Hendrix Experience- "Voodoo Child (Slight Return)"

Words shall express little for this epic line. For Megan, and all those merry gentlemen and gentleladies who have a thing for Jimi. All hail Seattle, city of Gods.

Boston- "More Than a Feeling"

This used to make me feel so happy. Now it just makes me feel happier. That chord sequence! AHhhh!

Eagles- "Hotel California"

Once you've heard it once in a day, you're stuck. Melancholy feeling, summer music, great lyrics: it's got it all.

Sex Pistols- "God Save The Queen"

It's mean, cause it's keen. The power of this riff nearly threw a monastry apart!
'Cause "We mean it maaaaaaaaan" I mean this is epic.

The Undertones- "Teenage Kicks"
I would like to thank John Peel, that guitar, those vocals, my mum, the autobiography of John Peel and my CD player to which I discovered this beauty.

The Newbies- ( mid-90's onwards)

Nirvana- "Smells Like Teen Spirit"

Not the best Nirvana song arguably, but undoubtedly the the most recognized and iconic riff of the last generation. Rumoured to be taken from the Boston riff above. Kurt Cobain once said everything was recycled in Rock. He was right. To date, riffs are taken from 30 odd years ago, mixed and carefully hidden in a pop song. But the clever people of the public aren't fooled one bit.

Oasis- "Wonderwall"

Not just a riff. A wonder of humankind. We love you Noel!

Blur- "Song 2"

Obviously. Duhhh.

Hole- "Celebrity Skin"

Everybody's heard it. Not all actually know who it was by. One of the best, but most annoying simultaneously. Billy Corgan, thank you.

Muse- "Plug In Baby"

Painful. High. Slighty eccentric. All names for beauty.

Muse- "Supermassive Black Hole"

Not many have the oppurtunity to appear TWICE on the list, never mind once. Congratulations, Bellamy.

Arctic Monkeys- "I Bet That You Look Good on the Dancefloor"

You're an explosion, you're dynamite indeed, Alex Turner. Thank You, dude.

Foo Fighters- "The Pretender"

Nice arpeggio, Davey G.

The White Stripes- "Seven Nation Army"

Again, another of those rareties that you can actually hum along to (thank you, Lowe) . Albeit, with a low voice like a man. Jack White has made the once thought impossible, posssible.

That was honestly one of the most enjoyable blog posts ever. And the longest. I just love the classics, the authencitity (which, on the day of my pop exam, I have written this term too much) and completely pure.
Comment if you've got any more to add. This is probably my last post until christmas, where my time is now consumed with Mock Exams. Maybe I should have an exam on this? Wait, oh yeah, I've already done one of those today.

Thank you.

Peace, Empathy, Love and phenomenal guitar riffs.


Tuesday, 23 November 2010

Gigging it up.

I'm going to Australia next year. Yes, seriously. I may be 15 years old, but fortunately by practically living in an arts school and maximizing the Music/Drama/Art output, I am one of 27 touring Australia next year with my school. We are setting off in 8 months for the experience for our lives.

We're very fortunate to have such an oppurtunity, I know, and also fortunately, we have some amazing musical talents in our tour party. Guys and Girls: Guitarists, Drummers, Singers, Bassists, Flutists, you name it, we've got it.

But as any band knows anyway, this doesn't come easy, or cheap, and for that fact, money doesn't grow on trees!

But that is something we our overcoming. This is the biggest team-building work we can do at such a tender age, and a gig on Friday concreted the fact that we can do this!!

The band that is made up of all team members are a band called King of the Desert. There's Linny, the rapper; Danny, the singer; Adam, the guitarist and occasional backing vocals and a marvelous Ginge (James) on drums.

I didn't need to hear much more than the stonking intro on Kanye West's "Goldigger". Danny launched into the "She take my money, when I'm in need..." and we were off. Some snare drum, and then everyone started seriously swaggering."Bonkers" by Dizzee Rascal was also up there with my favourites (every soul in the room sang along with no problem and 'bopped' to Linny's impeccable rapping skills, along with some nicely written material from the band "24 kisses"- an anthem for our generation in lurrrve. The power chord runs were simply awesome and made the crowd went wild several occasions. They sure know how to do the crowd pleasers. You can access some information here, on their myspace...

Another band incredibly worthy of a mention on the night was Jimmy Rockit. A local special, everyone knows them, and everyone is so impressed with their technicality and control of teir instruments at such a young age. Best ones of the night were undoubtedly : "Twist and Shout" (The Beatles)", "Radioactive" (Kings Of Leon), "Fake Tales of San Francisco" (Arctic Monkeys), "Mr Brightside" (The Killers), and another stonker of a classic, like the others: "I Bet That You Look Good on the Dancefloor", perfect for the night.

The Best Night I've had in a long time...
And after this, whadda say, maybe a trip to Portland, Oregon?

Visit both websites for more information on our trip of a lifetime, all through very very hard work. 8 months and counting!

P.S I got a CD of the finest acts in the area, and am satisfied with my purchase. If you are local and know what I am talking about, don't be afraid to ask for one- they're £5- good value for the quality on there :D

Saturday, 20 November 2010

Brody is Beautiful.

It's been a long 2 months. I apologize for my shocking lack of any good writing in these 8 weeks. I would tell you the whole sheer ridiculousness of my so-called life, but this is a music blog, so I shall write for purely musical purposes.

Apart from anything else, I have found many new musical loves that are not quite a decade old. Success! Something, well, perhaps seemingly recent. I have my Grade 6 Pop Theory exam in a week or so, and although I have been working hard on my series of never-ending essays on Elvis Costello and the Velvet Underground, all this punk talk really has got me thinking.

Ever heard of The Distillers? Of course you have. You must have. Frontwoman Brody Dalle is more known for her stunning looks, gneuine Punk Rock ethos and her mohicans back in the era of 2002, the millenium was there and we had all that post-punk boy band crap, but the Distillers were where it was at! Yes, Blink were good and stuff, but Brody Dalle is like the female equivalent and another Heroine to all those chicks that are stuck in America waiting a new music revolution. I'd never heard of her before, and now I feel all the wiser for knowing. The Distillers always come up in the recommendations and on Hole Radio on, but they're different. She has the ability to be Courtney Love's daughter, but in reality she's like Joan Jett mixed with Patti Smith with bee stung lips and a truck load of tattoes. Maybe not the best influence, but at least she doesn't do drugs knowingly, only a nicotine and alcohol addict. How else would she gain a voice like that? My blog does not condone use of these social drugs to sound like Brody Dalle.

The voice, her voice. Take a listen... This is probably my favourite Distillers song of the moment, and it will definitely remind anyone of that late-90's Los Angeles obsession. Many good Punk bands come from that era, but at the moment, California acts as a great place to start a band! Brody's voice is one of the best things I have ever heard come from a person with the X chromosomes. She's as tough as steel...

Unfortunately, she's not like this anymore. She's lost this completely unique voice, The Distillers split up 4 years ago, obviously not built for the modern century with all the shit that comes with it. Yeah, sure she should have stuck with it, but she grew up, I guess. Courtney Love did, and those who didn't died with their rock and roll ethos still placed in their hearts. She married Josh Homme of Queens of The Stone Age, and they had a baby girl. She formed Spinerette, and completely changed her image. She is now a mother, after all.

People change, of course they do. Musically, and in other ways. They change. Full stop.
cally. That's the moral for this month, guys!
And I'll leave you with a quote from the lady herself:
"Boys don't like it when you play with their toys. Especially when you do it better"
Peace, Love & Empathy
(it lives indeed)

Thursday, 23 September 2010

Rock on, Gold Dust Woman...

I can't believe I hadn't seen this cover already. Fleetwood Mac are amazing, an inspiration, but this Hole cover really is fantastically kick-ass. Acknowledge CL's dark locks. New Hairstyle for me maybe? :D The way she flicks her hair back and the style of this video is really dark, but once again Hole rock.

Wednesday, 8 September 2010

Excuses of the Month.

Okay, letmme get this straight: Courtney Love is not my bitch.

And since I haven't the energy lately to say much or do much because of school starting up again, this is not going to be a really inspiring post, as you can guess by the first sentence.

She's not my bitch; but yet I love her very much. Yes, she's mad, but that's what makes her so interesting. I would say that certain people are not open to honesty as much as others, and that I believe, is one of the many things wrong with this world. She's TOO honest sometimes. But doesn't honesty make brilliant music? Think about it; the best hits and records have been the ones that people can empathise with. From the Beatles and people wanting a pop revolution to Love's era shout-along 'music' that didn't actually have much skill or technicality to it; music is what you make of it, and if they have lyrics that reflect what you're going through in a particular time of life, then so be it. And Hole is one of the few bands I think actually has originality to its bitter core. It takes chord transitions that shouldn't work, simplicity and tantrums to the extreme, all the while making it actually sound good.

And yes, I also realise that maybe, my ears are different, and Courtney Love's Screams and Growls together maybe don't sound as brilliant as they do to me.

I will not make this into a rant post, but I think that every blog post makes me more and more certain with my writing style.

And makes me more and more certain on the level of Weird I possess.
Or a new disease I call : "riotgrrrl syndrome"

Cure me now, I'm addicted!


Thursday, 26 August 2010

Soundtrack to my Summer

Me on the left there with my buddy Raccoon, where you can find a link to her blog on my blog.. this was at a Hayseed Dixie gig and it just reminds me of the start of a very.. musical summer.

This may be a post a month later than originally planned.

Okay, nothing's planned anymore.
It seems that this writing regulary is escaping me with everything I've been doing this summer (and that's EXCLUDING the stuff I still have on my to do list; write a full arrangement for next week; get out and spend that HMV voucher instead of deliberating over a wide selection of albums for about 2 months; and broaden my musical horizons instead of continually listening to Hole, which, although they don't get boring, I am listening to Live Through This an average of twice a day, which could be seriously damaging to my health. (Effects- I can't sing without roaring and my guitar hates me for playing "Softer, Softest" one too many times.))

But yes, what I'm trying to say is I need to write a blog post about the music I have discovered this summer.
I believed that this summer (which weather-wise, started off good) would reflecting that, would be a long, restful and boring event with an Avi Buffalo soundtrack.

But; I went down a different path after I couldn't pluck up the courage to buy another artist that nobody my age actually has a clue about. (I think my boyfriend is getting rather annoyed at this
usual music town trip; I walk into HMV, I look for totally obscure artist, waste his time, moan to him when HMV don't stock it, stamp my feet, and then walk out of the shop in a huff before he can find the new Pendulum album. Yeah, I don't know how he puts up with me... )

But instead of reviewing a new album, which I really should do more, I couldn't get the album so I couldn't do the review.

But instead... another age-old discovery, in the name of the Screaming Trees.

Sweet Oblivion was on my birthday list and the other day, it just so happened to fund some pop theory essay writing that was particulary difficult and I had to get through.

The album on a whole is like sea waves... some songs like 'Nearly Lost You' are so huge they sweep you away and before you realise, and then dump you again after the song is finished.
Another veteran group of the 'Seattle Sound' scene, I believe this group is so effortless and the musicality sweeps out of them. With the traditional instruments and traditional style of that time and era, with the long hair and the look, it just makes me fall in love again and again with an era I have never witnessed, but yet that I still can empathize with.

But then, Mark Lanegan's voice comes sweeping at you like a hurricane above these waves. I believe his voice is the definition of ear sex. The deepness of his voice throws any song, but this is a pitch that you just can't stop loving, throughout the whole album.

Dollar Bill is a slow reminiscence song, full of eerie sentimentality.
More or Less is a painfully good one for driving, with it's seattle guitars and regular drumbeat, and a soaring climax of grunge...
Shadow of the Season is a tribal percussion journey of Lanegan waves.

Most of all, these songs all tell stories with their individual riffs and a great instrumental refrain of "It's sweet oblivion.....". Because it is.

Other songs that have made my summer complete and existing (some have also been quite special to me) :

Hole- Hit So Hard/Boys On The Radio/Best Sunday Dress (alternation between the three)
Oasis- Live Forever (voted by Q readers this year as the best song ever written- I think that's too far, but positively Oasis' best effort. My favourite from them.)
The Runaways- just anything.
Jenny and Johnny- Scissor Runner (a perfect teenage love song)
L7- Pretend That's We're Dead/Shitlist
The Maccabees- Toothpaste Kisses

Love Summer. Love the ultimate summer playlist that everyone compiles sub-conciously. It's personal, and that's what makes it so good.
Farewell summer, but now for the autumnal delights of the music world, like the Mercury Music awards!
Until Next Summer,

Wednesday, 21 July 2010

Summer Love for the Sub

This week has been especially summery and gorgeous, so the weather obviously reflects on my up-and-going iPod playlists. What has been cropping up again and again are songs from an album I recently downloaded, a tribute to the 'Greatest American Artists' around at the moment; something that's truly American; and embraces the inner American style.

The American lifestyle and summer is very in with Britain at the moment; and this brings me to one of my favourite little philosophies of life. I think one should embrace and talk, cherish and show the appreciation for (and this means every day!) the things that they really love; and if this so by means mentioning even a music label practically every time I post something on this blog, then so be it. So with the American lifestyle and the character and true feeling of a label like Sub-Pop, which I have to say is probably my favourite label ever, I have to pay homage to it for the kind of sun-kissed gorgeousness it is producing at the moment.

One of those bands frequently appearing on these Sub Pop playlists at the moment is the Foxes of .. the Fleet: Fleet Foxes.

They must have been around for quite a while now, but this true american heritage sound that has appeared on the music rounds lately has to feature them and their gorgeous single 'Mykonos', centerpiece of the the Sun Giant EP. From the name, this song itself is paying homage to the small Greek party island, although it doesn't sound what that description brings to mind. It's tribal chorus harmonies and beautiful swinging acoustics may make you sway away in the summer evening. Those softly pounding drums is something quite soothing, and it's a dose of relaxation I highly recommend. A Grecian relaxation treatment.

How do Sub Pop turn out this revolutionizing artists like it's natural?

Because it's Sub-Pop.

And it's probably the truest, most natural American Alternative Rock you will ever hear.

Next Post will hopefully be another Sub Pop band that is hitting the high times lately. That is, If I can get the whole music package on their part before it's the end of summer! The next band are a band I definitively believe in, and I do think they'll be even more successful by the end of summer.

HAPPY HOLIDAYS! Stay safe; and don't spend too long out in the sun listening to The Drums. Maybe a little Foxes wouldn't go amiss?

Sunday, 11 July 2010

Guitar Lust... I mean, Love of course.

Okay, well today in Britain it is BOILING outside (obviously not as gorgeous as L.A or something like that, just another thing to complain about when you're on english turf), my iPod has run out of power and there's nothing I'd really like to do more than post on my blog. Just looking for some inspiration.

Today, is Pearl Jam day. Any
one? Okay, I made that up but some days- most days- I have a themed music day according to how I'm feeling. And if Pearl Jam floats your boat on a summer's day then Pearl Jam it is. Can't beat a bit of Eddie Vedder.

And that brings me back to what I want to write
Recently I've been 'exploring' this site: and it's really amazing what you can find. But....
What seems like forever now I've been totally after a Fender Squier Venus that "Love" actually co-designed:

So, I guess, the closest I can get to this is Squier Model by Fender Bullet Stratocaster in Rosewood Daphne Blue, which I absolutely ADORE:
.... and is surprisingly cheap.

The Venus Model < is a mix of strat, squier and others...

It all makes for good Guitar Lust, but I'm
quite happy saving up for a beaut like the one below.

... all to fulfill the promise I keep telling mother when I have to borrow money: "Well, Mum, when I'm a rich and famous rock star with heaps of money... I'll buy you anything you want.. so for now.. a strat please?"

So.. while we're at it...

Shall we purchase a Fender Artist Billy Corgan Strat.... ?

In "Olympic White" .... ?

I could be so lucky.-
riotgrrrllives| x

Sunday, 4 July 2010

I hate myself and want to have revenge on Seattle

Even knowing that every moment of forever I will love and cherish Nirvana and Kurt Cobain, there is no way in the world that anybody- myself included- will begin to understand the actual music technicality of Nirvana. How did Kurt write songs for a generation? How do we even begin to understand what any of the songs dark depths and actual meanings are? This is something that is starting to seriously evoke curiosity based on a post I read on the ‘Nirvana Formula’ on a pop theory website about song-writing. To even begin to understand is quite difficult but to question if this sculpturing that happened was on purpose or just the genius’ subconscious mind working is another thing. It talks of all the technical stuff, about how many of the chord transitions Kurt works are Minor 3rds and how the basis of his songwriting relies so much on supertonics. If you listen to the little extracts and read the post here:

You may even start to understand a song writing world of a true genius. Kurt Cobain may have just fooled everyone with his way of music.

But to the interesting thing. Some see a description of patterns in songs and tastes in rock stars’ choices of power chords overly confusing, but with a visionary aid, I may seem to prove my point better.

I stumbled across this lovely thing by complete accident, and it filled me with complete joy. Maybe Kurt Cobain is just like any other song writer, not of ‘rock royalty’ or whatever, but paired with this complete formulaic love of power chords (mostly because they’re easy and it’s straight there, straight back) and his gorgeous voice, it was gonna happen that some die-hard fan is going to listen to these songs so much she does start to see similarities.

Check these two songs out. The choruses are particularly things to focus on. This world of his is clever, eh?

‘I Hate Myself and Want to Die’ is a song they specifically recorded for Beavis and Butthead- true 90’s cartoon heroes – and was going to be the title of Nirvana’s 3rd album for years, until others suggested to Kurt that perhaps it was a bit too bleak.

‘Frances Farmer will have her Revenge on Seattle’ is from In Utero, and it is one of Nirvana’s hidden gems of that particular discography.

If you were a world famous rock star by this time with a full-blown heroin addiction, I think you would start to recycle some chord/melody patterns. And THAT's what made that guy so special. Three cheers for Kurt! Oh, and it's the 4th of July, Three cheers for where I always am in my imagination- America! Hip hip hooray for Alternative Rock!

Peace, Love and Empathy,


Wednesday, 30 June 2010

Fly away to Malibu...

Well, it's been a long time to say the least. Life has been crazy busy, so I guess neglect of a blog was in order. Good news is that my 'busy break' was entirely musical.

On Sunday, I won my local music school's competition title for 'Musical Performer of the Year'. It took a load of hard work and dedication, but somehow I pulled it off! As a result, I will probably never listen to any Blondie ever again, as I have incredibly worn it out so much so to win the competition with some of the best Blondie songs known to mankind :)

To celebrate, I will post one of my favourite songs at the moment, and a song that will remain one of my favourite songs for eternity. Obviously being songs at LEAST 15 years old, for crying out loud. You didn't think anything different, did you?
From one of my personal favourite musical eras, I shall display. Riot grrrl is something I've been interested in for a while now, so when I hopefully get to write about in my Grade 6 onwards Pop Music Theory examinations, I'll post some of those thoughtful writings on here.

Next Post will be more thought-provoking... perhaps. But for now a break, and an insight into my mind.

Peace, Love, Empathy [...]

Bikini Kill's 'Rebel Girl'. This kicks ass.

And my favourite music video of all time, it has to be said. Why do I always keep looking it on YouTube, when I can have it here right on my own blog? Simple. Now convenient and lovely.
There is something undeniably beautiful about Courtney Love dancing, setting fire to palm trees and wearing a beautiful dress all at the same time. Enjoy.

Sunday, 16 May 2010

Music Video of the Month

Hm... well I'm not sure if I like this video.. or the song. BUT I love Tiffany's style and other music so here. The video has got lots of that sun setting- guitar, chevy thing that I just can't get enough of.

This single was Fearne Cotton's 'Single of the Week' a couple of weeks ago. Says it all really.


Saturday, 8 May 2010

Another record created with extreme Love...

Courtney Love has made a full, fledging comeback.

She rioted her way through the rest of the nineties as a widow and ultimately, a single mother, and didn't dampen down the way she was feeling at the time. She battled through grief, drug overdoses and the media displayed her who was spinning out of control wildly.

The only great point after 2004 for her came when Celebrity Skin received good reviews, with a new drummer, a new bassist and a different sound. Many cite this as the only shiny gem in Hole's back catalogue, and I agree, but not with the only bit. Sometimes these records made with pain, fury and complete anguish turn out to be the best of one's career. After all, they're true to the bone.
So she's returned and she's done exactly the same thing, hitting us with a record so powerful, even without Eric Erlandson and missing the rest of the original Hole line-up. (Which quite honestly, saddens me. They can't even get to grips with things and make the classic line-up Celebrity Skin era [...])

Nobody's Daughter was released last Bank Holiday Monday, to mixed reviews. Many said that with the works of Billy Corgan and a new vocal sound, now aged 45, the record is not only completely true and real, but a matured Love sound, something obviously her, but with something that not even Celebrity Skin had. It has experience.

It's a whooshing 11 tracks of pure Alternative American bliss, careful producing and help from the likes of Billy Corgan, and the brave and heroic approach of her favourite subjects, which even now after the nineties flourish and middle aged songwriting, are not stale yet, remarkably: "Someone Else's Bed"is a tall of well, waking up in someone else's bed; she revisits her scarred soul in Nobody's Daughter where she growls a epic Love line, crafted so obviously by her where she says exactly what we've all been trying to say for years that she sums up in one painful, reaching line: "Asphyxiate all your pain away..."

Obviously, the sensitive subject of nobody but her husband "I met a boy, he came from the sea, he was the only boy who ever knew the truth, about me" crops up in "Pacific Coast Highway" among others screeching revenge and on the other hand, gorgeous tributes. It is something she can only sing about, when in other songs she just feels she should just lament her anger with him for leaving her ('Someone Else's Bed': "Were you there when I'm ready to top myself? Were you there when I'm all alone? Do you even know why I am suffering? Are you down to your bones..." is quite a painful reminiscence with her) She also expresses her anger, jealousy or perhaps sarcasm in how people are portrayed in "Skinny Little Bitch", the press in 'Letter to God' : "I never wanted to be some kind of Comic Relief" and abandonment are all featured from a true life, first-person angle.

From the world's shattered whore, as she puts it so aptly herself, it's a great journey over great waves of a scarred and troubled soul.
"It's glorious, its terrible god I need it.
It’s beautiful, it’s ravenous..." as Miss Love puts it herself, soaring to a climax on and as Nobody's Daughter.

Saturday, 1 May 2010

Best of the Best Round-up

Okay, well it's May now, unexpectectedly and kind of ridiculously, so I shall share on my blog simply the countdown of the 5 best things that have happened in music for the past 2 months:

5) Finding out that there will be a Kurt Cobain biopic detailing his fulfilling, or not so, life. And finding out that Robert Pattinson will thankfully NOT be playing him. That made my month and year. With Courtney Love co-producing it's sure gonna be warts and all.

4) Seeing Courtney Love cut her hair back to it's Live Through This days. Those extensions were truly awful. (although that's not necessarily music-related, but still.)

3)Finding out that Sub-Pop is going back to it's former glory days with a line of young, ambitious bands, making that Sub-Pop Alternative Rock sound that only the Americans can do. No matter what they don't do right, bands such as Avi Buffalo, Happy Birthday and riot grrrl revival girl group, Dum Dum Girls are sure to go far. II 'll certainly be buying their records. And word that Mark Arm (former North-East Punk-Rock GOD and lead of the tremendous, and timeless Mudhoney), is still at Sub-Pop headquarters working as Manager. Awesome. Awesome. Proves that with time, things don't change one bit.

2) Discovering that the Hole-but-not-kinda-hole-because-it-only-contains-one-of-the-original-members are releasing a new album. Having already being released in America, but not until Monday in Britain, obviously I've heard many of the songs on the web and seen Courtney Love at the NME's promoting Nobody's Daughter songs. I am loving Hole's 'Skinny Little Bitch' and 'Samantha'. Although it's not the real Hole, it sure sounds like it is. The bitch is back, everyone. And she's back for good.

1) Foo Fighters announce they are releasing another album, starting recording in September and plan to release by next year. With a new album will come a shedload of tour dates will come with it, usually. With news of this, I started jumping around the room. That's all to be said.

This is definitely turning out to be a very good year in music. Some people will say. I hope people will be able to look back and say "Why, yes, 2010 was the year of Alternative Rock Revival... It was quite a nice year.."

Peace, Love, Empathy ..

Tuesday, 13 April 2010

Music Video of the month: Miss World

It's not new or modern or filled with special effects or anything like that.

Sorry, but this is coming from a girl who's stuck in a decade forever,and this is one of my favourite music videos. I just love it.

Look out for: "Cleaniless is next to Godliness"

Cult and Mainstream: the fight between the special people..

First off, I'm not sure if "Cultdom" is actually a word. Ah, well then I have just invented it. Deal with it.

Def: Cult ADJ [ADJ n]

Cult is used to desscribe things that are very popular or fashionable among a particular group of people.

Sounds simple enough, doesn't it? But really, it isn't. This one little word has spawned decades of misconceptions and misunderstanding.

When something is given a "cult status" it often confuses many. I have just said this, I know. But I want to emphasize it.

It all started for me when I had read that once when the "Twilight" saga started, it had only a cult following. A misconception followed making the connection of cultdom to vampirism. Yes, this is going to sound pretty bonkers, but that's what I thought. I guess that makes ME bonkers. So basically, I thought something that was said to have a cult status was a vicious circle of blood-thirsty humans following this particular "cultdom", all connected with each other. This was a year and half ago. Really, if you think about it, this could be true, with all these cult groups in the world (HA!). This is only with a series of books. The Music Business is perhaps the greatest example to show the border between Cult and Mainstream (And, is there really one?)

NME wrote a list wuite recently that really interested me. It was a list of the 'greatest' cult stars with the title "The World's Greatest Unsung Heroes". It may still be on their website somewhere:

It was basically a collection of musicians that I hadn't heard of. With the exception of Daniel Johnston. He was described, in so many words, as America's greatest Cult Alternative Indie Star. What does that mean? It means hemight even be worth listening to. If you're into that kind of thing. My main attraction to these double pages was the column on one of the first pages titled: "KURT COBAIN: CULT KILLER". Reading this article in semi-disgust, it was confusing. But I made confusing sense of it all. It told of, how Kurt Cobain unpurposedly lifted artists such as Daniel Johnston and Teenage Fanclub out of their comfortable ground and cult status, into the eyes of a wider audience, and almost destroying their careers as a result. Why am I explaining this? You can read it all on the article yourself, but I guess I'm just trying to make a point.

Now, recently I have been listening to Teenage Fanclub, and are now loving them as much as anything else on my iPod in the mainstream (I admit, I am a bit of a mainstream music girl, apart from the odd occurrence), but I wouldn't have any idea about them if it weren't for him. That just says it all really. Did these artists like their cult following? Or did they want to hit the mainstream? Some people go mad for mainstream, but some just want to get their beloved music listened to by an audience. Any audience, being mainstream or not. Teenage Fanclub are a Scottish Indie still, though, but damage has been done to their full cult status. Their fans are the biggest fans of one Kurt Cobain himself, who was a fan. So, does this mean they're on the cult side, or the mainstream part? It could be the middle. There is usually a middle in these kind of things.

Well, anyway, now I realize the importance, or not, of this "barrier" between cult status and mainstream. Because there is undoubtedly one.

My advice? Don't choose any. Because either could kill you.

Haha. Well, I tried.


Be daring this week and listen to some um... "iconic" cult. Try Daniel Johnston's Hi, How Are You (1983) or Teenage Fanclub's Songs from Northern Britain (1988).

They're both equally brilliant.

Peace, Love, Empathy x

Monday, 8 March 2010

Out Today: A Classic?

Today, Gorillaz release their third album, titled Plastic Beach.

Now don't get me wrong, I love Damon Albarn and a Poster I recently received with an NME magazine package was some very impressive artwork of the new album and it's really cool, but there is something about this album that strikes me as slightly odd. I was flicking through my new issue of Q magazine, and as it happens, little things catch your eyes. Well, I wouldn' be lying to say yet again, the album artwork in the review of this album is simply fantastic. But.. another thing.. the rating Q had given it. This shocked me.

"5 STARS?" I said to myself. The little 5 stars hightlighted in red stunned me.

Now, it is known that in the history of Q, it is very rare that any album gets 5 stars, even if it is some tremendous remastered compilation of some iconic artist. This is only usually the case with remastered Rolling Stones' albums and other things of that status.

But for a album just released to gain this kind of honour is just remarkable. I can't really say anything yet because I haven't listened to the whole album yet (but what I have heard doesn't seem anything different from their old stuff, or special, but what do I know?), and I haven't read the whole review, so I can't be too judgemental..
Time will tell, I suppose, to whether this is a "Classic. You need it in your collection today." or the "Best Album of the Year" when only three months have passed...

Listen to it today, and see if you think Damon Albarn has hit the spot yet again.
Peace, Love, Empathy.

Sunday, 21 February 2010

My Best Cobain-related purchase

For all those that do not like inspirational figures, saddening but fufilling life stories, drugs, rock and roll, and just plain reality: look away now.

I bought this a couple of days back, and it really is one of the best Non-fiction 'books' I own, and undoubtedly my best Cobain-related purchase (Cause I own a lot of stuff already), and this is the icing on the cake for my collection.
It may not be your type of thing, but if you have a gift of putting scrapbooks together, or just like looking back on times, then this could be for you.
With an incredible interest in Kurt Cobain myself, this is perfect. It includes never-before seen pictures, drawings of childhood, journal entries, documents, other personal items and a ton of memorabilia. Recreations of polaroids and actual lyric pages that were the start to the soundtrack of Nineties America ... all here. There's even an audio CD that includes never-before-released spoken-word material, and it's just like poetry.
With the biography telling every detail alongside (you can get the full biography Heavier Than Heaven by Charles R. Cross also) which really is a pleasure to read, warts and all account of one of the most talented artist of the modern era.
I won't start to preach about the incredible talent, stories of Kurt, I'll just say before you make any judgements upon his life, read this book.
It really is a beauty. And an imperfect one, at that.

Thursday, 18 February 2010

Riot Grrl and warming up the winter months...

Today I am writing in light of a very beautiful purchase.
Beautiful may be the wrong word to use, but we'll see.

12 years on, I still must stress the importance of a particular album that is in my "Top 5" list of albums. It may be a tad influenced and biased by my own opinion, but on that alone, no one should undermine the beauty of this one album I bought earlier in the week. It is severely underrated.

The 3rd album from the Olympia Rock veterans, and the centre of the"Riot Grrl" movement came after a 4 year break .This band does have some serious issues involving line-ups; The members change again and again, maybe due to one particular member who is publicly known to have a string of issues.

But... This album is proof that writing can change considerably into an artist/band's career, and if you take one influence away, the final product can differ slightly four years later. It is a large "up yours" to all the doubters.

Have you guessed yet?

After Hole's 2nd album was rumoured to be filled with much of the writings of Kurt Cobain himself, people doubted that Hole (Courtney Love, mainly) could actually write an album that would sell. Courtney obviously wanted help with the band's 2nd album, because she desperately wanted to compete in the same category as her Husband's reinvention of Rock, and development of Alternative music.

But,in 1998, Hole came along again, and produced Celebrity Skin, obviously without the late Cobain and his rumoured influence.
...And so the story goes. It seems that, actually, Hole can make beautiful music themselves (Eric Erlandson's quite simply genius composing skills, and Courtney love's ability to write thoughtful lyrics herself, without her husband.)

Album's highlights have to be the sentimental qualities and deep lyrics of Malibu, the very sensitive tones (and whopping chord sequences, it must be said) of Dying, and Summery feelings of Boys On The Radio, which just sounds like it is meant for the pop charts.

It's a different Hole, yes. But a deeper, sensitive and actually quite thoughtful Hole, too.

Give it a try. It's made for the summery days that will be here soon. (:

Avaliable in all good music stores.

Peace, Love, Empathy (oh, and Grrl) x

Sunday, 14 February 2010

OMG, you look just like Shakira, No No, You're Catherine-Zeta...

Happy February, Everyone!

To Start: Today is just like any other day, and that means I'm not going to wish you all a Happy St.Valentine's Day and start gushing about soppy Take That love ballads.

The only sign of that holiday where I live is the deep pink polish I have on my Toenails, and the chocolate buttercream cupcakes with edible hearts on my dining room table, a present (or a joke) from my lovely mother. (:

But if we were to talk about present-buying for your other half , or just for the single person to treat themselves to a album this holiday (because you never need a reason for buying yourself a new album), your thoughts should go out to the new Florence Welch of the year and brunette beauty Marina Diamandis with her generally misleading plural name Marina & The Diamonds. Of which, the "Diamonds" are her fans, she says encouragingly.

Her album The Family Jewels is out tomorrow, and includes another nail-biting view of the dream of Hollywood in single Hollywood, about an infectious disease that seems to affect some certain, blonde girls, and the "puking american dreams". Her vocals are gorgeous moments of deep melodic tones and a realistic edge that are captured perfectly in this single, also.

One thing we know, is that Marina's debut is 12 songs from a girl who's surely down to earth, and another pop female artist that is definitely not obsessed with "the mess that's America" and filled with a pop-sarcasm that is sure to win us over.

Her sound? You have to listen to it to understand it. It's a contradicting messy mix of genres and clever lyrics. The British music industry will accept this kind of thing, as it has done with many, many others...

And for all those who want a love-sick guitar ballad this Valentines: Paramore's The Only Exception is one of their best songs to date, and a Hayley Williams shows she can do a different side. Warning: It may get you all sentimental.

The Family Jewels by Marina & The Diamonds is out tomorrow on Vinyl/CD/Download on the 15th February.

Peace, Love, Empathy.

Wednesday, 20 January 2010

Cliffy Byro.. or... whatever.

Named as the Best British Band of 2009 by many (and who's to argue) was the astonishing Cliffy Byro.. Oh, wait, no sorry, Biffy Clyro. (We can forgive the name for the talent)

Mix the soaring climaxes of Kings Of Leon with the melodic, but yet incredibly gritty rock riffs and choruses of Foo Fighters, and make them Scottish.


Simon Neil, Ben Johnston and James Johnston, (Lead, Drums and Bass respectively) were united at the age of 12 by their love of grunge, metal, punk and Pearl Jam's "Black" from the 1991 album Ten (the defining underground record apart from Nirvana's Nevermind) and formed a band as a result. Simple enough.

But, as the best band story often goes, this wasn't an overnight success. They realeased their debut single in 1999. A decade ago.

Despite everything you immediately assume, Biffy Clyro are not some kind of puritan Rock/Metal/Hardcore band.

They embrace the Pop. (You see the resemblance to the Foo's?)

The way they mix the kick-ass riffs with some nice melodies made the long path to the mainstream charts just a little bit shorter.

They kicked out the 8-minute tracks with some shorter, straighter songs complete with some softer songs(Many of Horrors, for instance, simplistic but beautiful) and released the album Only Revolutions. Yes, there are the few people, unsurprisingly that say Biffy have Changed "in a bad way". But, really, if they hadn't changed their sound just a little bit they might not have gained the popularity they now indeed have. Because sometimes change is good, and not everyone wants to listen to 8-minute songs...

Whether its the incredibly sweet, piano power of "Mountains" or the slightly strange "Pause It and Turn It Up" (No, it isn't just you, the song IS 25 minutes long. FACT), There is something there worth listening to, because secretly, everyone likes a good pop melody, whether or not it is diguised by the "Rock Star" cover.

Embrace the pop, people.

Peace, Love, Empathy.

Album Highlights: That Golden Rule, Cloud Of Stink, Many of Horror

Monday, 18 January 2010

Saturday, 16 January 2010

Sound of 2010. Inspiring.

As we are getting more and more into the year (already), I thought it's the time when I should probably should make a list/deduction on the music that's going to happen in this year. "Happen" meaning room you should make in your music collection for...

Note: This post may be a tad influenced by my own musical tastes and Q Magazine's " The 10 Best New Acts" [...]



Guitar-laden, growling, 21st century Courtney Love. She's fierce.

Check Out song "Walk Away Slow" and Cover of Muse's "Supermassive Black Hole" on MySpace.


Post-Punk New-Yorkers on a Indie Path to success.

Described as : ""One of the best indie pop debuts of the year" - Rolling Stone and "New York's official Coolest New Band... the most contagiously energetic NYC band of the past 10 years." -- NME. Check out song "Let's Go Surfing"


Minimalistic Indie and Californian surf guitar band with a habit to sound like The Strokes.

Check out: "Answer to yourself" .Featured on "The Ten Best New Acts of 2010" in Q.
Debut Album out in February.


Sting's Daughter. Need I Say More? Yes.
ska/pop/electro-punk band. Cool Attitude. Sex-Pistols inspired at the age of four.
Debut Single from the band: "Caesar" released on 20 January.
"Forget my dad, you need to hear my band."

Listen to their music. And be surprised. Cause this is 2010 now, y'know...

Peace, Love, Empathy.

Friday, 8 January 2010

This is what Pop Theory does to you..

Well here we go. I'm writing a blog. This may become quite tedious, but the aim of this blog is to update my whole audience with the exciting wonders, and sometimes scary, of the music pop/rock world.

As a budding young music journalist, I religiously study Q Magazine monthly and increase my pop-music knowledge with all within. I write essays on musical acts that have changed the world of pop music and at the moment, amd have written about 10 so far as part of my pop theory course with London College of Music.

I could even start a music journalism career right here if so be it, but that's highly unlikely.

Why yes, its a broad subject. But this is just a bit of fun, you see?

I will start a new decade with a new blog full of stuff that may or may not interest you, considering how high your 'digestion' for this sort of stuff is.

So, yeah. Thanks. Here goes.

Ah. I almost forgot.

My title? It may or may not have anything to do with the content of my blog posts, but we shall see.

I'll keep you guessing.


I couldn't end without posting a picture of one of my favourite guys, and 'the nicest guy in rock', could I?

Peace, love, empathy.