June 02, 2005

The Karelia

"Gasp! Who's that familiar looking chap who looks like the chap from Franz Ferdinand" I hear you cry, for I have sensitive ears.

Why it's Alex Kapranos in his old band the Karelia of course (some may remember this getting a bit of press a while back – apologies).

Yes in fact he pioneered his black shirt and orange tie combo back in 1997 with an obscure improvisational jazz-rock outfit who released one album and promptly disappeared…

Well I was going through the mp3 on my laptop and I discovered their album which I downloaded at some point last year and promptly forgot about. It was on the internet somewhere – I bid you to go and search. It's called Divorce at High Noon.

Musically patchy in places, it nevertheless has a number of tracks that make it well worth a listen, even if only as curiosities, though it's possible to see why it bombed – 1997 was the era of the Verve, OK Computer and Oasis failing to live up to expectation, not neo-jazz-rock-funk. Witty and erodite lyrics abound. In particular hunt down 'To His Coy Dietress' – nice Andrew Marvell reference – a song encouraging an obese lady to gorge herself on his "raspberry nipples" and asking "Could you encircle me/with lips that quiver and drip for me?" Fusing gluttony and sexual promiscuity with devastating effect, it's a triumph, whilst life in a Barret Garret is a stifled suburban tale of net curtains diffusing pink sunrises.

The concluding track, Garravughty Butes is a 10 minute epic improvised rock / jazz tour de force, over which Alex seems to freestyle whatever words come into his head, changing from a high pitched squeak to a confident growl as he repeats the word 'stupid', and asking whether the moon has gravity and finally concluding that the spacemen on the moon use Gravity Boots (at this point he shouts Garravughty Butes repeatedly as the song collapses in a psychedelic jazz haze, only to get going again with some random organ). Love's a Cliche was apparently a single, and it's delivered with an effortless swoon few vocalists (Morrissey?) can muster.

Quite simply, I've never heard an album like it. As a point of contrast, it also shows the extent to which Franz Ferdinand are a very cleverly controlled application of Alex Kapranos's talent, providing evidence that success involves fusing your strengths with a winning formula.

May 26, 2005

Believe the Truth (Part ii)

4 out of 5 stars
I don't think you could expect latter era Oasis to do any better than this. I still maintain that anyone who has heard Oasis cover Street Fightin Man will not be able to hear Lyla without wincing, but with tracks like The Importance of Being Idle and, crucially, no filler (something which let down an otherwise ok Heathen Chemistry), Don't Believe the Truth joins Coldplay in proving the value of having scrapped early sessions.

May 05, 2005

I can't vote…

… because I left my keys on campus yesterday, and there's no one in my house except me for the next few hours – doh! Do I really leave my house on the latch and trust the people of South Leam not to break into whilst I trot off to Kingsway Community Centre polling station. I think not.

Looks like I'll have to wait a little longer.

But I guess the the question is, will Tony also lose his keys tonight and not be able to get back into No. 10? I think not.

Looks like I'll have to wait a little longer.

In other news, it's looking like Cholo is the place to be tonight. Entertainment, politics, good company and tasty beverages. It's the Students Vote, in association with your good friends at RaW. Woo!

April 02, 2005

Word count msn usernames

Correct me if I'm wrong, but messenger programmes are designed with the expressed intention of bringing people together when they couldn't otherwise be brought together due to their slightly concerning habitual internet use. Their purpose is thus largely friendly.

However some people insist on taunting me with smug word count usernames, highlighting their superior ability to skilfully and precisely hit a word count. These people are scum.


March 30, 2005

Believe The Truth

Big surprise. Oasis have not managed the return to form they seek. OK no surprise there, but in fact they've done much much worse – Lyla, the new Oasis single (for I have acquired it) is awful. It sounds a little like their cover of Street Fightin' Man which appeared on the b-side of All Around the World, only with added quantities of self-parody, and worse, self-repetition (note lyrics about 'catching me if i fall' – I Hope, I Think, I Know off Be Here Now all over again). If we're making comparisons with recent lead singles, and we are, it's not a patch on Go Let it Out or The Hindu Times, both of which I quite like. Cue the comments about not matching their Definitely Maybe days.

March 24, 2005

It's only blood from broken hearts that writes the words to every song

Writing about web page http://www.bzoink.com/surveys.php?id=6154

Aaaaargh my three favourite bands are all preparing albums for release right now! Aaargh excitement! These guys went into the studio on Monday…

Describe yourself using one band and song titles from that band

Created by naw5689 and taken 23057 times on bzoink!

Choose a band/artist and answer only in song TITLES by that band:Babyshambles
Are you male or female:The Man Who Came To Stay
Describe yourself:Smashing
How do some people feel about you:Do You Know Me (I Don't Think So)
How do you feel about yourself:I Love You (But You're Green)
Describe your ex girlfriend/boyfriend:There She Goes (A Little Heartache)
Describe your current girlfriend/boyfriend:My Darling Clementine
Describe where you want to be:Albion
Describe what you want to be:Chasing Dragons
Describe how you live:The Whole World Is Our Playground
Describe how you love:In Love With a Feeling
Share a few words of wisdomOn the Path of Dalliance Tread Lightly

Create a Survey | Search Surveys | Go to bzoink!

March 19, 2005

Carl Barat DJs… kind of

I present pictures of last night at Ramshackle. (Over there <-) 'Twas hearty fun. Carl Barat of Libertines fame hung around at the back of the stage and drunk beer a bit. They played Libs b-side Bangkok – woo! Apologies to anyone I didn't take photos of, and points to anyone who spots Chris getting close to Milly…

March 15, 2005

Artsy Radio Fun

Writing about web page http://www.radio.warwick.ac.uk/~jbuckland

A lot of people have asked me "gosh how can we listen again to all those wonderful shows like the Arts Quiz and RaW Cinematic Hall of Fame"... a lot of people have also complained that there is nothing to listen to now that RaW has finished for the term. Well help is at hand! If you missed the RaW's fantastic speech radio (the bit I was responsible for at least), it's here , at least until we find a proper home for it…

Oops I did it again, I made a blog

I've made a blog, initially to upload 26 photos of Dan's birthday (they're over there on the left). What fun that night was. I also have 80 more photos (trigger happy that night) – msn me if you want more.


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