• 2014 gigs

    29. Aug. 2014, 11:15

    Gigs I've been to this year:

    04/02/2014 - Childish Gambino at Shepherd’s Bush Empire

    12/02/2014 - Poliça at Troxy

    20/02/2014 - Gipsy Kings at Royal Albert Hall

    07/03/2014 - Bite The Buffalo at Upstairs @ The Garage

    14/03/2014 - CHVRCHES at The Forum

    24/03/2014 - Broken Bells at Shepherd’s Bush Empire

    28/03/2014 - Metronomy at O2 Academy Brixton

    21/05/2014 - Rodrigo y Gabriela at Royal Albert Hall

    30/05/2014 - AWOLNATION at Shepherd’s Bush Empire

    06/06/2014 - Chromeo at Roundhouse

    10/06/2014 - Howling Bells at Scala

    26/06/2014 - Big Sir at Sebright Arms

    02/07/2014 - Sleigh Bells at Village Underground

    17/07/2014 - Jungle at McCluskys

    18/08/2014 - St. Lucia at The Lexington

    06/11/2014 - Future Islands at Shepherd’s Bush Empire

    15/11/2014 - La Roux at O2 Academy Oxford
  • Musical Resolutions

    4. Jan. 2014, 18:03

    Happy new-ish year!

    Here are my musical related resolutions:

    * Continue to make an effort to go to gigs. I live in London so I have no excuse (apart from lack of funds, but that's what credit cards are for). Last year I made it to 13 gigs, and I have 7 booked already in the upcoming months so I expect to beat my record this year. If you're interested, here's who I'm seeing in 2014 so far (in chronological order): Childish Gambino, Poliça, Gipsy Kings, Broken Bells, Metronomy, Rodrigo y Gabriela and Arcade Fire.

    * Listen to albums all the way through. I tend to fixate on a particular song and never bother listening to the rest of the tracks on the album, most likely missing out on real gems. A perfect example is
    11th Dimension. I've loved it for years but never checked out Phrazes For The Young in full. More fool me; it's great! Also, I kind of fancy Julian Casablancas, but that's neither here nor there. Don't worry James Mercer, you're still my favourite.

    * Finish this little project. I bought a book in 2012 called 1001 Songs: You Must Hear Before You Die. I started reading it and simultaneously listening to and making a playlist of the songs on Spotify (http://spoti.fi/Kqcux0). I'm still only a third of the way through the book/playlist, so at some point this year I want to complete both. It's been fun for discovering classics and genres I'd never listened to before.

    * Make more music. It's been about five years or so since I last wrote an entire song. I used to write all the time but for whatever reason I've not been inspired lately. My resolution is to figure out what's causing the block, and knock its block off. I also want to record some of my old songs properly (the ones that aren't too cripplingly and embarrassingly dire). It would make my mum's day, if nothing else.

    Music has always been central to my general sense of wellbeing, so it makes sense to make it a focus of my life/goals. What musical related resolutions do you have?
  • 2013 gigs

    8. Okt. 2013, 12:06

    My new year's resolution for 2013 was to go to more live gigs. Here's a record of my attempt:

    So far

    12/03/2013 - My Bloody Valentine at Hammersmith Apollo

    16/04/2013 - Ludovico Einaudi at Usher Hall, Edinburgh

    13/05/2013 - Junip at Village Underground

    27/05/2013 - Flaming Lips at Roundhouse

    30/05/2013 - Alicia Keys at The O2 (free work perk)

    24/09/2013 - Fleetwood Mac at The O2

    21/10/2013 - Agnes Obel at Union Chapel

    25/10/2013 - Everything Everything at The Forum

    28/10/2013 - Lissie at KOKO

    12/11/2013 - Arcade Fire at Roundhouse

    15/11/2013 - Emiliana Torrini at Heaven

    19/11/2013 - Jimmy Eat World at O2 Academy Brixton

    05/12/2013 - Oh Land at Scala
  • Return of the Mac

    28. Sep. 2013, 18:05

    Wed 25 Sep – Fleetwood Mac

    It has been a lifelong ambition to see Fleetwood Mac play live (despite the fact that they've essentially been broken up the majority of my life), so I was thrilled we managed to snap up a couple of tickets back when they came out. It was pretty torturous having to wait so many months, but totally worth it when it finally rolled around.

    We were up in the nose-bleeds at the O2, but it didn't matter. The acoustics were amazing, and every song sounded as it should - from anthemic tracks like The Chain (played surprisingly early in the set - I would've thought it'd have been saved for an encore number), to Landslide, which took on a new poignance as Stevie Nicks gave a knowing smile on the line "I'm getting older too". The whole band has obviously aged, and this had an impact on their performances, but not in a negative way. Stevie and Lindsay's voices were perhaps a little deeper and not quite as strong as previously, but they performed with just as much energy. Mick put in almost a 10 minute drum solo, and you certainly couldn't have accused him of not being energetic! Overall, it was amazing to hear some of my all-time favourite songs expertly performed in an arena, and to be able to sing along with other fans. Gold Dust Woman was definitely a personal highlight - probably my favourite point of the show, though their performances of Tusk and Big Love come a close second for sing-along value.

    The *one* drawback for me about this gig is that Christine has always been my favourite Maccer, and her songs the ones I love the most (especially You Make Loving Fun, which I love so much I could genuinely cry about it). The set-list didn't include any songs where Christine originally sang lead vocals (including some of the singles from Tango in the Night, which have nostalgic value for me, as they were the first Fleetwood Mac songs I ever heard, and the first songs of any artist that I sang along to as a toddler). There was a whisper in the press that she would join the band on stage for one song, but I didn't dare allow myself to believe it because I couldn't bear to be disappointed, and it's a good thing too as she didn't show up. What REALLY devastated me though, is that she DID turn up for the following night's performance!! Thankfully, it was for a song that they had performed the night I went, so I didn't miss out on You Make Loving Fun or anything (which I think would have resulted in a serious emotional breakdown), but still...

    That aside, I'm so glad I got to see them. They were as good as I'd hoped they'd be, and it was £70 (eeeek!) well spent.
  • Can't get over this...

    8. Jan. 2012, 1:05

    It is OBSCENE that Kate Bush wrote The Man With the Child in His Eyes when she was just 13 and recorded it when she was 16. What a woman (child).
  • The Gift That Keeps On Giving!

    27. Jul. 2011, 11:37

    While the weather hasn't been as glorious as I would have liked, it is nevertheless SUMMER! To this end, I have created a special playlist. I'll be adding to it, so feel free to subscribe.

    You're welcome. Happy summer! X
  • Daytrotter iPhone App

    27. Jul. 2011, 11:34

    Just a quickie - if you don't already know about Daytrotter, then you are seriously missing out. Once you've checked it out and marvelled over some excellent acoustic versions of your favourite songs, plus the pretty delicious artwork, go and download the iPhone app. You won't be sorry!
  • Tim Minchin at Edinburgh Playhouse: Review

    1. Mai. 2011, 22:58

    Sat 16 Apr – Tim Minchin and His Orchestra

    Overall, I loved the show. Tim was incredible - his vocal performance was stronger than I'd ever seen it in videos, his timing was spot-on, and his stories were hilarious. And of course...the songs were outstanding!

    A couple of negatives: the orchestra, while incredibly talented, totally drowned out the vocal at times. I guess the sound technicians were at fault there, or perhaps the acoustics in the Playhouse just weren't suited to the particular set-up they had going on. Also, I thought the order of the set-list was a little funny. Basically, he did two encores, both of which were slow/non-comical (though admittedly beautiful) songs, which were a little out of character with the rest of the show. I was expecting a bouncy singalong number at the end, so was left feeling ever so slightly flat.

    Nonetheless, it was a show worth seeing. I was thoroughly entertained, especially by my favourite track If I Didn't Have You, and by a song that I'd not heard before about how you love your kids most when they're asleep or, as he put it, dead-looking! The story about his daughter's adoption was also a high point, though I won't ruin it for anyone who might hear it in the future by telling it here.

    Pricey though the tickets tend to be, if you have a chance to see him, I really recommend you do!
  • Imogen Heap at HMV Picture House: Review

    5. Nov. 2010, 15:54

    Mon 1 Nov – Imogen Heap

    She opened with my favourite of her songs, The Walk, and I wasn't impressed straight away. I think it was a combination of the fact that I absolutely love the recorded version, plus I think she was still getting in to her stride (in her defence, she had only just woken up, having spent all night and day working on her score).

    But she soon had me absolutely enthralled, and I found myself falling in love with tracks I usually skip. And with her.

    She is incredibly funny and likeable, telling low key stories between songs and bopping around the stage all the time. She even got us engaged in a singalong, which gets my vote every time. She was very giving as an artist, and based her set list on songs selected by the fans on her website (plus a few of her own favourites).

    Highlights for me were Aha and Say Goodnight And Go. The vocals on Headlock, for me, got pretty lost among the backing, but I have to say she has some amazing musicians on stage with her, and the staging was beautiful and eclectic.

    All in all, I had a great time. I was curious to discover how her songs would hear live - considering that they are highly produced and usually pretty high pitched! But she totally delivered. I loved it!
  • Underwhelmed by iTunes 10

    8. Sep. 2010, 23:15

    Aside from my whole "what's the point of owning music anymore when it's so accessible for streaming?" musings (I'm a Spotify subscriber if you're interested)...I now have further reason to be a little disparaging of iTunes (hitherto my music library application of choice).

    (I'm in a brackety mood this evening, you may have noticed).

    My current gripe with iTunes is the latest update: minor tweaks to the interface (which haven't improved my quality of life, disappointingly), a new retro logo which leaves much to be desired (sack the designer, I reckon), and, most questionable of all, a new "social" element called Ping. Granted, it's in its infancy and, knowing Apple, will prove to be wildly successful, most likely sidelining other services in the process. At this stage however, I don't like it. There, I said it.