21 Jump Street

I wasn’t expecting much from this, but was chuckling from the outset. It’s one for fans of Harold & Kumar, Hot Fuzz, Rush Hour and American Pie. Surprisingly, impressively funny.

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Interview: Kavus Torabi (on Knifeworld, Cardiacs, Monsoon Bassoon and that snooker bloke)

Kavus_Torabi_promo2

After my bizarre dream about Kavus Torabi the other day, I figured it was time to badger him into sitting down to answer a few questions. On the off-chance you’ve forgotten who he is, he’s the wild-haired guitarist from Cardiacs, Knifeworld, Guapo, The Monsoon Bassoon, Chrome Hoof and a dozen other collaborations.

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I figured I’d start with asking him how he wound up working on The Interesting Alternative Show, a weekly prog-rock indulgence co-hosted by Steve Davis. Dare I ask he wound up doing a radio show with some bloke famous for playing snooker?

KT: Well, it was fairly straightforward. Steve is a massive music fan and has impeccable taste. We met at a one month residency Magma were doing at this wonderful venue, Le Triton, in Paris. We pretty much hit it off straight away. He came to a couple of Cardiacs shows, we started hanging out quite a lot, he had me as a guest in The Interesting Alternative Show which he had been doing for a couple of years or so. It was such fun he suggested, if I was up for it, perhaps I could come in on a more full time basis … which ended up being every week.

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10 most popular posts of the past 90 days

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1. Skyrim – Constructive criticism at its best

People are usually unable to express their opinions without coming across like toddlers stamping their pudgy little legs and screaming, “But I want …”

2. First impressions: Arx Fatalis

I’m not very good at wielding a bone. Hell, I’m not even good at throwing them for dogs.  Continue reading

Chloe Howl – the best new things in pop are free

Chloe Howl src Facebook

With only 11 days left to go on this blog, it’s great to find an exciting new discovery. Chlöe Howl is the new Lily Allen when we didn’t even know the old one needed replacing. (Hey, don’t worry, Lily, we still love you.)

Chlöe has that same streetwise sneer, the witty lyrics, the edge of disdain. She drops her Ts in all the right places. She has a voice that sounds like cheap whiskey and borrowed cigarettes and getting the last bus home. She has the effortless beauty of the immaculately styled – you can imagine her surrounded by executives yelping, “We can SELL this!” – but she’s worth buying into. Actually, you don’t even have to – the EP is downloadable for free.  Continue reading

Thom Yorke spells out the downside of pay-what-you-will

Thom Yorke at Latitude 2009 photo by Hero of Sorts

This is a very interesting post from The Trichordist, which eloquently sums up my feelings on how music is treated. Yes, it’s always been a business, but, ironically, at least Sony et al actually cared.

‘”We were so into the net around the time of Kid A,” he says. “Really thought it might be an amazing way of connecting and communicating. And then very quickly we started having meetings where people started talking about what we did as ‘content’.’

– Thom Yorke talking to the Guardian

>> Read on >>

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The new rules of growing old gracefully

Nick Cave 2009 New York City David Shankbone

I was reminded an old post I made here, back when I could write. It’s not that I’ve forgotten how to do it, or magically been zapped by some wicked witch, but I’ve just run out of time and enthusiasm. I wonder if that’s what happens to everyone in the end. When was the last good Metallica album you heard? Isn’t the best recent Ministry album a pale copy of Psalm 69? I might hope for a good new NIN album, but we’ll likely get a dull slab of corporate dad-rock with some tinkly bits.

What happened to us all?

We got old. Rock ‘n’ roll comes with a deadline, and when you reach it, time to die or move on. You’re not supposed to still be there at 50.  Continue reading

Top 100 singles of all time: 46 – Metallica – Master of Puppets (and The Carpenters)

metallica master of puppets

I was far too old when I heard this; long past the age when it should have been part of my soul. I should have heard this growing up, letting its searing riffs embed themselves deep into my adolescent psyche; its heart-rending, tear-inducingly beautiful solo entwining itself with my memories like roses in a trellis.

As it is, I only heard this a few years ago and thought, “F*** me, it’s pretty.”  It is pretty. Its central section ranks alongside Comfortably Numb and Hangar 18 as the most lovely thing you can reasonably do with a guitar. Continue reading