Posts from March 2001
OneTouchMusic is a music discussion board, for people who really can’t get enough of it. It’s interesting how all music discussion boards end up with pretty much the same topics – as Stevie T. said to me, “It’s like I Love Music in a parallel universe”.
From our Sugababes Correspondent aka Mr Dan Rhodes, who would like it made clear (in response to my begging to reprint it) that this is “drunken evangelising”. Not something we’re unfamiliar with ourselves.
Sometimes The Sun Shines On 10-20% Overweight People
“People like me.
This afternoon at 5.30 I had a call from the good people at the William Morris Agency to tell me that they had managed to get hold of a ticket for an invites-only Sugababes concert at the Notre Dame Hall. I had been trying to get a ticket for ten days, and had given up hope. They were, as the Evening Standard would say, Hot. At which point the Evening Standard would go on to say that London Underground workers should suffer in silence – after all their lives are only slightly at risk every time they clock on. The chances of dying as a direct result of writing a piece for the Evening Standard are, heartbreakingly, negligible. Together we can change this.
Because I live not in London but in the heart of the commuter belt (Tunbridge Wells – London’s Long Island) I had to leave the house at 5.35. I had been virtually naked when the phone rang (I write for a living so rarely feel the need to wear anything apart from a pair of boxers and a Dry Blackthorn T-shirt) and had to get dressed literally faster than the speed of light and run to the railway station. Not a pretty sight. I made the train by the skin of my teeth.
Fortunately (Glory Be to Connex – I won’t hear a word said against them) the train arrived at Charing Cross at 7.05 – 25 minutes from curtain up. I ran to the William Morris office in Soho, then ran to the venue with seconds to spare. I am 10-20% overweight, so I was very out of breath by this point.
I had kept this evening free, just in case a last minute ticket came up, which it did. I had read in Time Out that Howe Gelb out of Giant Sand was playing at Dingwalls that same night, but still I kept the evening free. It was as if Schubert and Chopin had been clashing. I chose Schubert because Chopin is playing at Spitz on Sunday and I already had a ticket, and anyway Chopin plays quite a lot, whereas Schubert is coming up for his GCSEs and has to stay in and do homework so he hardly ever does concerts.
They were magnificent.
One Touch is one of my favourite ever records. So in my subjective reality (I apologise for the use of the phrase subjective reality) seeing the Sugababes at Notre Dame Hall was the same as seeing The Beatles at The Cavern would have been for lots of people. As I left the building I felt sorry for those around me for not having been there. It wasn’t a sense of self-satisfaction – it was genuine pity. I have only felt this rarely – after leaving concerts by The Smiths, Neil Young and Arthur Lee. The people minding their own business as they walked through the West End might as well have been from Mozambique – clinging to planks, their homes washed away by floods, or people from the earthquake-ridden regions of India, or British farmers losing businesses that have been built up over generations, knowing in their bones that the compensation they will receive will be late, inadequate and given grudgingly, that the government would rather carry on spending money on nuclear weapons and occasionally illegally bombing innocent people out of their homes on behalf of the Americans in the pathetic belief that we are a militarily significant nation rather than just than a lame-arsed, backwards bunch of clowns – the least civilised country in the EU by kilometres – where the pubs shut, embarrassingly, at eleven.
Such is the power of The Sugababes.
The moral: Ignore their rubbish name. Buy their album. Wait until they’ve done their GCSEs and go to see them in concert.
Glory be to Mutya, Keisha and Siobhan. Saviours of pop.
I hope you are well.
– Dan Rhodes”
Making The Pie Higher might be what this page is called. I like it a lot (it’s a weblog and it talks about music sometimes, pigeonholers) and should the guy(?) who runs it e-mail me and say what its actual name is I’ll give it a permanent link. Sorry, that sounds kind of crap, like I’m deigning to offer this person a link.
Anyway, why do I like it? Because it’s crisply written and intelligent and its criticisms mostly seem on. I would submit that “indie sites” (which I suspect we are) are ignoring Gorillaz not because they are too elitist to take note of Damon but because Damon‘s wanky cartoon supergroup is itself a nakedly elitist join-the-dots of Grand Royal hipsterdom. What does “elitist” mean anyway?
NYLPM also gets accused – there’s loads of stuff on the site that isn’t to do with us but I’m an egoist – of being blindly pro-pop and snarkily trendy. Well, pro-pop we’ll always admit to, but I can’t think of a single one of the pop records we’ve championed on this page which I wouldn’t still urge people to hear. As for snarky and trendy, yeah, bring it on. Those are good things to be! (And we’re not really very trendy.)
Lee Munson is like a lot of people I don’t know, those creepy villians who commute to Wall Street everyday wearing clothes worth more than their souls. Music content: “Did I pay for half a fucking Scorpions song? Yes or no? No! If I paid 15 cents a song, I’d understand. Put that music back on, whore!”
He also went to my school, St. John’s College — a place that I can say from bitter experience is no stranger to sociopaths.
Can there be anyone worse than Sean Combs at picking names? From “Puffy” to “Diddy” – Sean, man, what are you trying to say here?
The way the future sounds it may well have been, but I was totally aware when I saw my first Art Of Noise record that the invisible genii behind it were also behind Frankie Goes To Hollywood. Admittedly that record wasn’t “Beatbox”, but even the 11-year-old me could spot conceptual design unity a miiiiile off.
What do the following have in common? Opera, investment linked annuities, e-commerce, weblogging, buses, indoor bowls, DIY, Mathematics, gardening, and babies? They are all the “new rock and roll”, according to overworked and underinspired Internet sub-editors.
But which of them is really? Only NYLPM can reveal the TRUTH via the magic of, um, a poll. Consider the alternatives above with the utmost of care, then close your eyes and stab vainly at your mouse in the general voting area.
Pop Eye: a frustrated Greg tackles the most boring week in UK Chart history.
“Is metal about to see a resurgence?” asks the sub-header to this fine and thought-provoking article, which then rather gloomily prognosticates that no, it’s not about to come back. Well, can you see the Bizkit army turning back in the face of a Tesla reunion and Buckcherry, jolly amusing though the ‘Cherry are?
No. And nor, I don’t think, can the writer. The article wants a hard rock revival, but admits that the ‘kids’ (oh those meddling kids) want something less playful and uncomplicated, and more sour and ironic, at least at the moment. Not to mention – “Bands that stuffed Dial MTV and Headbanger’s Ball in the early 1990s have aged, and the front lines of the rock army need to be manned by the younger generation”.
It’s not just the mean-minded ‘tude of the Bizkitites that draws the listeners in, though. Nu-metal’s embrace of hip-hop, thuggish though it is, has given rock’s sound the crucual jump it needed to broaden its appeal again. It sounds messy and ugly and lumpy and whiny (cuz it’s meant to) but also, well, nu. Does that make it any good? No. But it’s the main reason why the people waving lighters to Tesla aren’t likely to be in the vanguard of anything any time soon.
(PS: Check the byline! Maura, you rock.)
I hate the Avalanches — there, that got your attention. Actually, I’m lying — they’re quite good, not ready to call them the new Disco Inferno quite yet, but definite points for trying and I can see why people are excited about them in the same way I was when I first heard D.I. Go Pop so many moons ago. I’m just surprised nobody (to my knowledge) has mentioned the Beta Band in comparison with them yet — seems to me both bands run on a similar parallel in unselfconsciously embracing so much of what *yawn* indie rock disregards or implicitly belittles, and implicitly daring their peers to at least try harder. And that, my friends, is a good thing.