Posts from January 2000

30
Jan 00

Do You Feel Real, And If So I’d Like To Know…

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I. 

The cod-philosophical question at the centre of pop fandom is this: is pop a genre or a state? Not all records designed to be ‘great pop’ – in the sense of being good for the feet, the heart and the bank balance – make it to the Top Forty, or anywhere near. But not everything in the Top Forty is ‘pop’, either. Clearly a record like My Bloody Valentine’s Tremolo EP isn’t, but I’d say a single like Sir Cliff’s Millennium Prayer falls equally outside pop’s remit. On the other hand, Oasis and the Stereophonics are obviously pop – they have enormous hit singles which people dance and grope to in discos – even if they’re not addressing the typical demographic.

27
Jan 00

YOU DO WOO? DO STEAL MY VOODOO

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D’Angelo – Voodoo

Love is in the air. Now, as everyone knows, there are two types of love. There’s love and then there’s love. Look at the cover of this album or at the steamy video for “Untitled (How Does It Feel?)” and take a guess as to which one D’Angelo favors.

Did I just say there were two types of love? Well, scratch that, there are more. There is, of course, self-love (no, not that!), which isn’t necessarily bad when kept in moderation. Unfortunately, on parts of Voodoo, D’Angelo becomes overly enamored of his own voice and songs and band.

15
Jan 00

Expo 2000: The Return of Kraftwerk (and why you shouldn’t be disappointed)

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For a while – maybe even a week – after New Year’s, I could still glance at the top of newspapers and feel a quiet, thrilling jolt at the date. Of course I hadn’t thought anything would change when the year did, but even so there was briefly an air about that little row of zeroes, something solemn beyond even the most rational of my cynicisms. Maybe it was only the look of them, oval, open and welcoming, that made me feel sneering was – well, not the wrong response precisely, but an easy, cheap one nonetheless. For those few days, hoping despite the evidence that some kind of change would come felt a great deal less crass than trumpeting that it wouldn’t.

An Interview With White Town’s Jyoti Mishra

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If you want to know about pop music, ask a pop star. Jyoti Mishra, in his guise as a regular poster on uk.music.alternative, is friendly, intelligent, enthusiastic and a pop savant of considerable taste. Jyoti Mishra, in his guise as White Town, is a pop star: for a week or so in 1997 his “Your Woman” single (you remember – music-hall trumpet line, synthpop, treated vocals, black and white video of gent chasing flapper) was at Number One in the singles chart. For me, that’s about the highest honour these times allow.

So I asked Jyoti for an interview – Freaky Trigger‘s first ever – and as it turns out I couldn’t have picked a better subject. He answered my e-mailed questions quickly and cheerfully, and the results are below, as amusing and thought-provoking as I could ever have hoped. Thanks a lot, Jyoti!

Before you read the interview, vital information. Jyoti’s own website lives at http://dspace.dial.pipex.com/elejyo, and the White Town webpages (with more information on the upcoming Peek & Poke album) are at http://www.k1m.com/wt.

And now the questions…

9
Jan 00

Why I Like Vinyl Communications

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;or; Confessions Of A Gabber Fan

Or maybe it should be called “Why I Like Kid 606” because Vinyl Communications, as a music-releasing entity, is a bit hard to encapsulate in a relatively short article. With releases as disparate as Lockweld (lo-fi radio static noise), The Haters (unrelenting noise noise), Disc (CD Skipping noise), Gogogoairheart (60s/70s Joy Division-esque punk rock redone with a bit more distortion), Lesser (jungle noise), Operation Re-Information (Devo as techno act), and Kid 606 (gabber noise), the label can’t really be said to have a “sound” so much as a philosophy: weird odds and ends are good. Oh, and noise is a plus – the more noise, the bigger that plus. Well, I like weird odds and ends (and noise too), so it’s not so suprising that I like VC. What is surprising (to me anyways) is how much I like gabber, i.e., how much I like Kid 606’s “Don’t Sweat the Technics.”

1
Jan 00

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