All 2 entries tagged Patrick Wolf

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August 29, 2007

Reading 2007 – Awards

So this year’s Reading festival somehow went off without the audience drowning, mostly thanks to the organisers turning carparks into campsites rather than forcing people to buy lilos and the like, and the hottest and most gorgeous three days of weather we will have this year. Sunshine on a bank holiday? I don’t believe it, and I was there! So here’s the best Reading festival awards blog you’ll read at ALD this particular week. Honest…

The My God You’re Fun Award – The Pipettes

First band on the Main Stage, everything and everyone to play for, and the weather’s unexpectedly rather damn nice. It left the Pipettes in the odd position of being in better circumstances than expected, but with more pressure (i.e. people) have ccrawled out of their tents as a result. And? And it was a blinder. There’s something massively endearing about the girls and their backing boys. Maybe it’s the easy on the ear but not sopoforic songs. Maybe it’s the rubbish but cute dancing. Or the polka dots and attitude. Whatever, they were a perfect start, and I’ll be off to buy their album asap.

We’ve had some of their stuff on here before, so here’s a jive-y little cover from the girls.

The Pipettes – ‘I Think We’re Alone Now’

I’ve Heard The Future And It’s Noisy Award – Crystal Castles

Oh my god. Drawing possibly the biggest crowd of the day in the Dance Tent despite being about third on, Crystal Castles sound like a Gameboy being microwaved whilst a madwoman yells over the top. Considering the last band to attempt this setup are The Knife (i.e. completely brilliant) how could it fail? It couldn’t. CC were brilliant, confrontational and yet somehow tuneful… ish. It is especially satisfying as this is band who’s first single was recorded by mistake, the singer pratting around in the studio and those vocals being used on ‘Alice Practise’. CC may be the hipsters choice at the moment, but sometimes those twats get it right. Sometimes.

Crystal Castles – ‘Alice Practise’

The Why Weren’t You Huge Award – Jimmy Eat World

When they got onstage for their Main Stage afternoon gig (the first of two) most in the crowd were there less out of obsession than out of a strange feeling that they should be there. Good choice. Very good. JEW proceeded to play a classic set of songs which you didn’t realise you knew and loved. It was almost perfect. Culled from Bleed American and Futures mostly, it demonstrated that there’s something unfair in a world which allows The Fray to become bigger than JEW’s real emotional rock. You should own Bleed American. No arguing. Being light on the earlier stuff was a shame, as it missed out the magnificent ‘Crush’, but they rectified that in their evening set. Stamina gets you everywhere.

Jimmy Eat World – ‘Crush’

Pissed And Wonderful Award – Patrick Wolf

Technical problems? Check. Pissed performer? Check. Fabulous glitter and violins? Check check check (actually !!! were good as well, but not pissed). Oh Patrick, how wonderful you are, with your craziness and beautifully dramatic songs. He’s like Rufus Wainwright with a folk fixation rather than a Judy Garland fixation. He also knows how to get an audience going. Thundering electro and folky strings shouldn’t really work but they do. His audience love him and it could spread. Yes, this is a gushing hagiography but ALD was there, y’hear? We were there! And there’s every chance that in future that might count as something to brag about, almost on a par with that time ALD saw The Killers at the Warwick Students’ Union with only 15 people in the crowd [snip! stop being boring – ed]

Patrick Wolf – ‘Overture’

If there’s any demand for more awards then we might write some more. At the moment we’re just trying to work through the two year supply of museli bars we took and forgot to eat…


November 28, 2006

The Violin as Rock Instrument

As a kind of ruse to let me post lots of good music at once, I’ve compiled a collection of tunes that showcase the violin in a different light to the standard rock/pop fare that usually comes to mind when a band goes to work with an orchestra. Funnily enough however, all of these are solo male artists so I’d be happy if you could suggest some female artists in the same vein (I’d have posted Joanna Newsom, but she’s all harp, ain’t she?). Anyway here we go:

Andrew Bird

andrew bird

Andrew Bird and his Bowl of Fire have been playing and recording for years, but it was only when scouting out various sites’ lists for the top albums of 2005 that I came across The Mysterious Production of Eggs. It’s a fantastic array of tunes that shift the focus from strummed, stroked or plucked strings, electric and acoustic, whilst fronted by his seem.ingly effortless vocal. Oh yeh, it seems strange to mention it, but he’s not a bad whistler either.

Fake Palindromes is a rock song with sly rhymes and building rhythms before battering drums back up the whirling violins in the wordless chorus. It’s possibly the noisiest on the album, and it’s over before you know it, but I love it all the same.

Andrew Bird – Fake Palindromes Mp3 Expired [buy The Mysterious Production of Eggs]

Bonus MP3: Andrew Bird – A Nervous Tic Motion of the Head to the Left Mp3 Expired
[taken from andrewbird.net]

Final Fantasy

final fantasy

Owen Pallett is probably more heard for his work arranging most of the strings for The Arcade Fire’s album, Funeral, but if you went to any of the early live shows, you’d find he’s also a damn fine solo artist as well. On stage, he builds up the songs around looping samples, tapping and plucking rhythms before forming string quartets over the top. On record, he’s allowed more freedom and adds effects and instruments into the mix.

Either way it’s amazing, and The CN Tower Belongs to the Dead was one of the first songs I heard before seeing the live show and I still find it’s buildup and release fascinating. He has since recorded a second more expansive and more concise record in He Poos Clouds, but instead of a fresh cut off that, I’ve added a favourite live cover.

Final Fantasy – The CN Tower Belongs to the Dead Mp3 Expired [buy Has A Good Home]

*Bonus MP3:*Final Fantasy – This Modern Love (live Bloc Party cover Mp3 Expired

Patrick Wolf

patrick wolf

We now cross the ocean to an artist that actually shares a label with Final Fantasy, and one who also seems to relish a sort of otherworldly feel. Patrick Wolf enjoys revelling in electronics and adding a more harsher edge to his songs. Of course, a firm eye is kept on that killer hook as well as the atmospherics, well presented on both songs here.

The Libertine confusingly came out around the time of Mr. Doherty’s first foray into the public eye (and into the cells for that matter) and didn’t make quite the mark it should’ve done. Its galloping drum loop and punchdrunk violin line definitely made a hit with me, and I’m hoping new song, Accident and Emergency from the upcoming The Magic Position pushes him to fresh and inviting ears.

Patrick Wolf – The Libertine Mp3 Expired [buy Wind in the Wires]

Bonus MP3 Patrick Wolf – Accident and Emergency Mp3 Expired

Jeremy Warmsley

Jeremy Warmsley

I’ve been kicking myself for the past week for not paying more attention when my radio co-host (the wonderful Emily Andrews) was thrusting a vinyl copy of Jeremy’s EP, Other People’s Secrets down my neck, and also when we actually played the lead track off the record. Of course now, it’s come back to bite me as his new album, The Art of Fiction is gaining praise wherever I’ve happened upon it and he’s just finished touring it around the UK (again, I missed him last time, despite more protestations).

Dirty Blue Jeans was that lead track, and it’s everything a lead track should be. Excited violins stutter, drums pound, spaces are filled with trumpets and Jeremy forces his way through as the song breaks down with him singing _“I’m still in control!” before it explodes and finally contracts. It’s a wonder so many glorious sounds could be fit into three minutes but he manages it with great aplomb. And yes, the album is a corker.

Jeremy Warmsley – Dirty Blue Jeans Mp3 Expired [buy The Art of Fiction]

Bonus MP3 Jeremy Warmsley – I Keep The City Burning (demo) Mp3 Expired
[taken from jeremywarmsley.com]


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