Saturday, 21 June 2008

A New Toy To Play With...

Tis called Wordle
Here are the fruits of putting some song-lyrics into it:

Black Eyed Peas - My Humps

mp3: [mp3 removed]

mp3: [mp3 removed]
(from Live 2003)

Limp Bizkit - Hot Dog

mp3: [mp3 removed]
(from Takk...)
(Wordle can't cope with all them weirdy characters that I'm not too hot on the pronunciation of...)

mp3: [mp3 removed]
(from The Best of Shaggy Vol.1: Mr. Lover Lover)

Any other ideas?
My personal favourite out of the six above is Shaggy. Coz he's AMAZING. No Questions Asked, Hands Down, the Greatest Performer of ALL TIME. L.E.G.E.N.D.

Wednesday, 18 June 2008

I like the flowers...

Tomorrow is the last performance of Jean Anouilh's Antigone in the gardens of Pembroke College, Cambridge. 3pm, tickets are £4, if by any chance you happen to be in the vicinity and in a play-going mood. I mention it coz I'm in it (as Haemon). This isn't - or isn't just - a tenuous excuse for self-promotion and the like. I wanted to post this video because it makes me smile, and it's linked to 'Antigone' in that it's virtually the same song as the one that we use to warm up pre-rehearsal/-performance:

Happy-making, no?
And the video below (even closer to the aforementioned warm-up song) is arguably even happier-making-er...

*Satisfied Grin*...
I second liz553's comment on the youtube page - "OMG this the best song ever!!!!"

If that song is now stuck irrevocably in your head - well then, you should be happy. But if you aren't and you want something else for to take over your cranium, then here's two more flower-related songs, both of them beautiful in their own special way:

mp3: Ryan Adams - Wild Flowers
(from Gold)

mp3: Spinal Tap - (Listen To The) Flower People
(from This is Spinal Tap - the soundtrack is here, the DVD here)

Sunday, 15 June 2008

Florence and the Machine's New Single - 'Kiss With a Fist'

I totally love it now, but 'Kiss with a Fist' kinda surprised me in a not-wholly-positive way on the first listen. It's all hard'n'fast'n'not-acoustic, which, given her previous (brilliant) output (the Regina Spektor-ish dark folk of 'Girl with One Eye', for example), makes it a bit of departure. But after a few listens, and moreover after seeing the video, I realised that I'd kinda failed to realise just how much FUN it is. Which is kinda an achievement for a song that references but definitely isn't about domestic violence. Eek. And the b-side is a cover of Cold War Kids' 'Hospital Beds', which you can also hear on her myspace.

Awww, look at the lovely cellophane flames on the bed. It's just like arts'n'crafts at primary school, apart from the one very-un-Primary-School-ish moment towards the end of the video which I believe might be described in colloquial terms as an 'upskirt'.

Anyway, the actual track is right here, as is her cover of Beirut's 'Postcards from Italy', which is equally brilliant:

mp3: Florence and the Machine - Kiss with a Fist
(Single out now, though not very widely available :( )

mp3: Florence and the Machine - Postcards from Italy
(unreleased Beirut cover)

And just coz it's utterly brill, this is 'Girl with One Eye' live. I linked to it above, but then watched it and realised that it deserves all the publicity it can get, and is therefore worthy of a place on this blog, which, silverese being like totally influential and all, is obviously a hyuuuge favour... Ahem. Anyways, this is worth watching for the last half a minute alone, where her guitarist tries to get a bit of the mic, but you just can't hear his voice at all coz hers is so damn MASSIVE. Then the song finishes and she grins sheepishly and says thank you. Awww. Once again, considering the lyrical subject-matter, she's purty darn good at raising a smile. Oh, and the first three and a half minutes are awesome too. Woop. And remember, y'all, she's at Glastonbury, TWICE. :)

Thursday, 12 June 2008

That Track With Julian Casablancas, Pharrell Williams and Santogold for Converse. Right here, y'all :)

It's called 'My Drive Thru', it's kinda funky, the guitar line occasionally sounds like it comes in a fraction of a second too late, and it makes one bob winsomely in one's seat. And look at this lovely photo. It's like 'OMGlikeherfootislikethesamefootaslikehisfootthatsliketotallyfreakinAMAZING':

And the phrase "It's summer in the city" just feels like exactly the sort of phrase that Julian Casablancas should be talk-singing. And "We all wanna dance / Just wanna dance, dance" is totally the sort of sentiment the Santogold should be expressing in typically sassy fashion. And Pharrell is just singing in falsetto, which is auditory spectacle enough on its own, so I'm not really that fussed about the actual words.

This is what Santi White (or -ogold) said about the track:
"Everybody on it does their own separate thing and we didn't do it together so it ends up being just this weird long song with sort of everybody with lots of their own personalities separate."
It's better than that would suggest, in that it's not just a load of random shoved-together-ness. Or maybe it is, but it's all tied together with a catchy guitar riff. So y'know - it's fun, and what more did you expect, right?

mp3: N*E*R*D feat. Julian Casablancas and Santogold - My Drive Thru
(for Converse's 100th anniversary)

Wednesday, 11 June 2008

The Bestest News Story EVER

Hero Hanks Rescues Bride

11 June 2008 5:15 AM, PDT

Hollywood actor Tom Hanks played a real life hero this week by halting filming on his new movie to help a stranded bride reach her wedding.

Hanks is currently filming Da Vinci Code sequel Angels and Demons in Rome, Italy and the crew were shooting outside the Pantheon church in the city when the actor spotted the stricken woman.

The bride, in her traditional white dress and veil, had arrived at the church - only to find her access blocked by the film crew, causing her to panic.

But Hanks immediately halted filming and rushed over to help - taking the woman on his arm, he escorted her and her father across the set to meet her groom at the altar.

The star even gathered the train of her dress, to stop the long gown dragging on the floor. And after his good deed was done, Hanks allowed the crew to complete the scene, reports America's Hello magazine.

The new movie is due for release next year.

from WENN

Are the cockles of your heart not warmed. Mine are. But maybe that's coz I just finished (all but one of) my exams. Woop woop et cetera :)

Monday, 9 June 2008

Weezer - 'Pig' (Red Album Deluxe Edition Bonus Track) - In which we find out why Rivers Cuomo is vegetarian

Or: In Which Rivers Is
Or: Awww...

Yes I'm milking The Red Album dry to the bones at its very core. This is because it gets this blog hits. And hits, as we all know, mean a sense of well-being/power. Regardless of self-interest though, THIS IS REALLY REALLY GOOD:

mp3: [mp3 removed]
(from Weezer (The Red Album) (Deluxe Edition))

The first half is just like "awww, cuuuuuuuuute!!" Especially the clapping at the line "Everyone clapped when I asked her to marry me". It even includes the phrase "cutie-pie". Like I say: awww...

Then: "But now, I've got to die". Awww... (awww in a slightly different sense). The day of little Piggy-Rivers's death has arrived. ":(" doesn't even begin to cover it. And he's so gracious and accepting of it all, even thanking and empathising with the farmer...*wipes tear away*.

Dude, if I wasn't vegetarian already... Not to get all militant on your collective or anything. Rivers is, by the way. Vegetarian, that is. Although I quite like the phrases "Rivers is", just by itself. It has a nice sound to it, and it's grammatically challenged, which is nice. After a big orchestral-y bit, there's a quick, heartbreaking acoustic return to the beginning: "When I was a baby, I was so happy...". Like I say: awww...

The first ever English language Sigur Rós track - 'All Alright'.

I think Sigur Rós are really hard to write about. It kinda goes without saying that it's utterly beautiful. This song is certainly no exception. Understated and delicate, you could quite easily go the whole song without realising that he's singing in English if you're not listening that closely. It's strange, after never having made any effort to read up on translations of previous Sigur Rós tracks, to suddenly be given what feels like such a personal insight, as if you're overhearing something that you shouldn't be.

It's a song of two halves. Maybe coz I'm in the middle of revising for Shakespeare exams, but it makes me think of The Winter's Tale, a play in two halves, a tragicomedy. In simplistic terms, the first half is a tragedy, the second a comedy (comedy in the Renaissance sense of the word). And in simplistic terms, 'All Alright' kinda works the same.

The first half seems shot through with guilt: "I want him to know / What I have done / I want him to know / It's bad". At the end of the first half: "Now he'll know what I've done." Into the second, and he's sitting on a hill with his "new love" listening to bird-song. I don't know what the Hopelandic section means ("ýu sul nó tjú ron") , and then it ends with the phrase "time to be alright."


Seriously, the Winter's Tale comparison sooooo fits. The pattern of having done something bad, feeling guilty, and eventually
finding redemption. OK maybe that narrative - loss, suffering, regain - is the underlying basic narrative behind, like, everything, but still. That's just my $0.02 or whatever.

Either way, the song's pretty phenomenal. Download it, then, because it's only 128kps and you want the full stereophonic high-fidelity experience, order the album. :)

[mp3 removed]
(from Með suð í eyrum við spilum endalaust, out 23 June; you can stream the whole album here)

P.S. Thanks to this thread for the lyrics :)

P.P.S. Watch a safe-for-work video of 'Gobbledigook' here.

Saturday, 7 June 2008

Lightspeed Champion feat. Keith Murray - 'Galaxy of the Lost (Live on Conan O'Brien)'

Lightspeed Champion (why do I ALWAYS accidentally type "Chamption"?!?!) played 'Galaxy of the Lost' on Late Night with Conan O'Brien:

This was Dev's summation (from his site):


I think it's really good. The swishy cameras work really well with the sweepy strings, and (excuse my literary criticism-isms, I'm supposed to be revising right now:) serve to emphasise the disjuncture between the instrumental beauty and the frank, confessional and bodily lyrics, such as "As we're kissing I'm sick in your mouth." And if you're beady-eyed (and who isn't, frankly?), you'll notice Keith "I Am Scientist" Murray on guitar, as well as usual member Mike Siddell, who used to violin it up in Hope of the States (*sheds tear in remembrance*). Un veritable groupe-super, non?

Conclusion: Lightspeed Chamption [sic] are super. Now go on this blog, read the words, dismiss them as hyperbole, but then change your mind and actually believe it when you hear the brrrrand new tune-age from Dev & co. that you'll just have downloaded. 'Happy Birthday' in particular is really bloody scarily awesome. Then go on this post and download another hard-to-find-but-brilliant-Lightspeed track. And if you don't own the album, GO BUY IT.

Obviously you don't have to do exactly that, in exactly that order. I'm not a fascist, yeah? :)

Thursday, 5 June 2008

In Apology.

If you think the Five O'Clock Heroes/Agyness Deyn track sucks, this will make you happy.
If you think the Five O'Clock Heroes/Agyness Deyn track was alright, nothing special, this will make you happy.
If you didn't even watch the AMAZING video about the Five O'Clock Heroes/Agyness Deyn track, go do it now. Coz it's AMAZING. Then download this, and it will make you happy.

"Oooo-Ah-Oo-hooo!" is my favourite noise in the whole world ever right now.
"Tac Tac Tac" (2:47) is my second favourite noise in the world ever right now.
And right now I almost don't care that Brigitte Bardot was a racist.

mp3: Serge Gainsbourg & Brigitte Bardot - Bonnie and Clyde
(from Bonnie and Clyde - not very available physically - just get it off iTunes, yeah?)

"Doubly Whiskey, Coke, No Ice": In which we seek to emulate a balding man, and are embarrassed as a result.

If this guy doesn't just SCREAM "You wanna be just like me don't you? In all my beard'n'glasses-ey glory. Sweating and balding, red of cheek and ear, I AM A ROLEMODEL"... Well I scream back "YES! Yes I do want to be just like you! You are glorious, Craig Finn of The Hold Steady, and your glory is a glory that begs like a god-damn puppy-dog to be emulated."

And you know the best way to emulate? I'm gonna posit that it ain't ordering the same drinks that he may or may not order. But should the un-best-ness of the method put me off from trying it anyways? Heck no! Am I right?

mp3:The Hold Steady - Constructive Summer REMOVED AT RECORD COMPANY'S REQUEST. You can still hear 'Sequestered in Memphis' though, right here.
(from Stay Positive)

1:08 - "Me and me friends are like: / "Double whiskey, coke, no ice""

I'm in a bar. Or more accurately, a Wetherspoon's pub. As referenced by The Rakes, in a now-dated fashion ("the smoking bit"...). Oh dear. I just mistyped "dear" as "dead". I should have left it as it was.
But the lyric is on my head, and it feels like a challenge. It takes five or so minutes to get served, which is fatal, because the boring part of me wins out in its reasoned and honourable drive to cut out the "double" part. I do the rest of it all the same.
"Whiskey, coke, no ice."
Shit. Down at the first damn hurdle.
"Whiskey and coke. No ice."
He thinks I'm a twat.
"What whiskey?"
Aw for chrissakes... What's with all the hurdles, dude? This isn't even meant to be a damn race, never mind a silly one with fences to jump over. Craig Finn doesn't look much like the athletics type. He'd never get this kinda treatment. He'd never be found in a Wetherspoon's.
"Oh, umm, Jack Daniels."
Jeeeeeez. He definitely thinks I'm a twat. He's mostly right. Was it my fault for not speaking loud enough, or his for not hearing me?
"Jack Daniels."
He gets it. Maybe he thinks I'm ordering the drink for someone else. Doubt it. Why didn't I go double? Coz you save a whole bloody quid, a'rite? That's half a chips-in-a-pitta.
"No ice, yeah?"
"No ice."
"That's £2.60, mate."
Meh. You can write songs about the ordering part, you can definitely write songs about the being drunk part, you can even write songs about the hangover part. But who the hell ever mentions the paying for drinks part? NO ONE. COZ IT'S BLOODY BORING.
I'll quit before the waiting-for-change part.
Drink was good though.

Sunday, 1 June 2008

A New Idea...Read-along-a-song! Part I: Sigur Rós - Gobbledigook

This is my latest (and greatest, if I don't mind saying so myself) idea: I hope you like it. Hopefully there will be more videos like this:

BONUS: you can watch this video without being embarrassed! The official video (on their official site) is rather NSFW...
And here's the mp3:

mp3: Sigur Rós - Gobbledigook
(also available free on their official website)

P.S. I just realised that if anyone in the know about the nature of the official 'Gobbledigook' video happened to be standing outside my door as I made the above video, they might have suspected, due to the constant repetition of the song, and of individual parts of it over and over again, that I was doing something else. Eek...

P.P.S. If anyone can suggest a better name for this feature (better than "Read-along-a-song", which shouldn't be hard...), please comment below. And comment anyway!! :)