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Apr 14

PWC14 Second Round: Cameroon v Chile

Pop World Cup 20142 comments

amanitas Welcome to the knockout stages of the Pop World Cup. At this point, the rules are very simple indeed. Two tracks, vote for the one you like best. Here we have Chris’ Cameroon, who topped Group A with 7.5 points, against lartsaegis’ Chile side, runners-up in Group B with 5. Click below the cut for the tracks.

R16 1: Cameroon v Chile - Which Do You Pick?

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Poll closes: 28 Apr 2014 @ 13:00

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AQUA – “Doctor Jones”

Popular26 comments

#783, 7th February 1998

doctorjones Delightful as “Doctor Jones” is, probably the most interesting thing about this record is that I’m covering it at all. “Barbie Girl” – smart as it was – was also obviously a novelty record: for Aqua to return not once but twice shows that Europop enjoyed more commercial clout in Britain than it had in years.

22
Apr 14

PWC14: Group H Finale (South Korea, Algeria, Belgium, Russia)

Pop World Cup 20147 comments

k3 Welcome to the final group stage game in the Pop World Cup! I’m sorry it’s been so delayed – the result is that we’ll have a truncated voting time: you have UNTIL FRIDAY AFTERNOON to get your votes in on this. So let’s see how things stand.

South Korea (managed by Iain Mew) are in pole position with 5 points. Anything short of last place in this game and they’re through. Below them it’s something of a dogfight. Algeria (Katherine St Asaph) maintain a slender advantage with 3 points to Belgium (Glynn)’s 2.5. Russia (Chelovek Na Lune) have 1.5. Russia need to go for the win, but all these sides really need to beat the other two.

Songs, votes, and a bumper results report below the cut.

21
Apr 14

Game of Thrones S04E02: The Lion and the Rose

FT1 comment

Well, that escalated quickly.

One of the huge benefits of watching the HBO series over reading the books is that the story cuts to the chase much, much faster. The Purple Wedding seemed to take a geological epoch to actually happen – onscreen we don’t get the pages and pages (and pages) of orga-fun detailing the seventy-seven courses, the seven hundred and seventy seven guests, blah blah blah. 

USHER – “You Make Me Wanna…”

Popular34 comments

#782, 31st January 1998

usherwanna Another piece of the present slots into place: if you leave out charity records, this is the first artist we’ve met to also have a Number One in the 2010s. Usher fits a model for pop stardom we’ll see more frequently as we get closer to now: a teenage prodigy with material good enough to stay the distance. He’s also – again, typically for his generation of stars – a highly adaptable performer. Every now and then he’ll put out something really startling, like 2012′s “Climax”, but it seems to me that more often an Usher record is smoothly and confidently on-trend.

18
Apr 14

…Down Paradise Row

FT + Pumpkin Publog5 comments

Mother Kelly's, Bethnal Green

We went to Mother Kelly’s in Bethnal Green for the first time last night (it’s only been open a couple of weeks) and it’s LOVELY! Twenty-odd taps of well-kept keg (including seven last night from De Molen), six fridges of well selected bottles and red, white and fizzy wine on tap too!

The space (why yes, it *is* in a railway arch) is bright and airy, the tables well spread out (I suspect this may change as it becomes more popular, there’s certainly room for more) and on a spring evening it feels just right.

16
Apr 14

OASIS – “All Around The World”

Popular99 comments

#781, 24th January 1998

When “All Around The World” came out, it wasn’t yet quite clear that Oasis had peaked. Yes, the album was a folly, but they were still colossal, with no sign they wouldn’t come back stronger next time. This record felt belligerent: the pointless length, the Pepperland video – a band being deliberately, grandly lazy. Think what you like about us, it said, we’re going nowhere.

Which turned out to be true. And with hindsight, I can hear a different, far less triumphant record hidden in this one’s rolls and folds of overdubbed flab. To get to it, though, I have to ask: how on Earth did this thing get so big, anyway? What were they feeding it?

15
Apr 14

PWC14: Group G Finale (USA, Portugal, Ghana, Germany)

Pop World Cup 201410 comments

brandy Welcome to the final Group G game! Let’s see how things stand.

USA (managed by The Lex), Portugal (managed by Weej) and Ghana (managed by Jonathan Bogart) all have 4 points, and the barest whisker of percentile difference between them. So it’s a straight knockout – the two sides doing best from those three go through.

Germany (managed by Tak), meanwhile, fell victim to the Group of Death and are on 0 points. They’ll be playing for pride only.

Poll and songs below the cut, and an ADMIN UPDATE for fans of those.

14
Apr 14

fighting crime/trying to save the world/here they come just in time

FT8 comments

FPKK“Alice opened the door and found that it led into a small passage, not much larger than a rat-hole: she knelt down and looked along the passage into the loveliest garden you ever saw. How she longed to get out of that dark hall, and wander about among those beds of bright flowers and those cool fountains…”
—Lewis Carroll, Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, 1865.

“‘I just want to rock and roll all night, and party every day.’ That’s an old Kiss song. But back when the song was new and my wife Leslie was 12 years old (this was before we married), she heard it as, ‘I just want to rock and roll all night, and part of every day.’ OK. Again, a necessary mistake, to make the dream accessible — imaginable — to a 12-year-old.”
—Frank Kogan, ‘Let MTV Ring’, Village Voice, 5 June 1990

In the mid-90s I was working as a sub-editor at the film journal Sight and Sound, a job I enjoyed a lot: the people I worked with were smart and friendly and entertaining; the magazine’s subject matter was detailed and interesting, and a lot of it was new to me; during work hours focusing on and absorbing the history of cinema, in my own time researching earlier histories of music and technology, I was able to push to the back of my conscious mind how exhausted and burnt-out I was on paying mind to present-day music; how dispirited and heartbroken I was at losing my job at The Wire, though this wasn’t the cheerful story I told myself. A brief season as chief explorer of an amazing secret path under the pop entire battlefield! And now an exile; or double exile, really…

13
Apr 14

PWC14: Group F Finale (Nigeria, Iran, Argentina, Bosnia-Herzegovina

Pop World Cup 201410 comments

dubioza Welcome to the final Group F game. Let’s see how things stand.

Pretty straightforwardly, as it happens, since both the earlier results in this group ran exactly the same way. Nigeria (managed by Cis) are through on 6 points, Bosnia-Herzegovina (managed by Scott) are eliminated with zero. Which leaves Iran (Wichita Lineman) in a strong position for the second qualifying place with 4 points, and Argentina (Chris) needing a win here on 2.

Songs and poll below the cut!