Posts from 24th July 2009

24
Jul 09

FRANKIE GOES TO HOLLYWOOD – “Relax”

FT + Popular110 comments • 13,585 views

#531, 28th January 1984, video

In the beginning was the ban. Oh, there’d been a Frankie before, and a “Relax” before, but the ban was the B of BANG!, that Paul Morley-driven hyperconcept which when completed would lead to….. well, something. (A computer game, as it turned out.)

The ban, of course, was consensual. Relax, in its flesh-and-leather sleeve, ached for punishment – as public and official as possible. Mike Read duly doled some out. The record became an instant legend and soon had the sales to match the publicity. Classic McLaren playbook, as many a veteran must have pointed out. And the really clever thing was, when you played it it was hardly obscene at all: its filth was all in the aura and the rumour.

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Saint-Marcellin & La Tur (Cheesy Lovers 8 & 9)

FT2 comments • 832 views

Saint-Marcellin

Cheese stats: A soft raw-milk cow’s cheese from Lyon, France
Bought from:
Une Normande à Londres

This is a small round cheese, packed in its own little clay dish, pale and creamy with a white bloom on the outside. Breaking into it was harder than anticipated – it looks like a cream cheese – and the cheese was firmer and more elastic than anticipated. That said, it’s still a soft cheese – just not as soft and squishy as it looked.

It’s tangier and sharper than expected, too, and far more bitter. There’s a strong herbal taste, and some mouthfuls taste very strongly of rosemary. If I’d been guessing about the beast this cheese was made from, I might have said goat, and not cow, because of the tanginess. It’s also quite salty and creamy, and there are slightly nutty undertones.

Cheesy conclusion: This cheese appears to be a mild-mannered little round bundle of creaminess, when sitting in its pot in the cheese stall, but was surprisingly robust when we ate it. I liked this cheese, but I ate it alongside the U Bel Fiuritu, and that totally stole the show.

La Tur

Cheese stats: A soft cheese made from a blend of goat, sheep and cow milk, from Italy
Bought from: Gastronomica

This is a Three Beast Mashup Cheese, made from milk of cow and goat and sheep. I thought that it might be a bit of a stunt cheese, but it worked really well. It comes in a small round, and is creamy-white in colour. Towards the soft drippy squishy sticky exterior it tastes herbal and slightly rancid, in a good buttery way. Further inside it’s a light, fluffy – almost marshmallowy – cloud of salty creamy goodness, with a good lemonish tang that stops it being too cloyingly sweet or overwhelmingly creamy.

I can definitely detect the influence of goat in the cheese – it’s got a real tanginess – and of sheep in the creaminess. The cow contribution is harder to pin down; possibly it’s working more as a unifying influence for the other two milks.

Bad Vegan chum declares it much tastier than it looks – she was expecting something much milder.

Cheesy conclusion: I wasn’t sure if this would work, but it was both tasty and interesting.

Une Normande à Londres

Leave Big And Majestic To The Yanks

FT6 comments • 217 views

And so its BRITAIN’S GRAND CANYON WATCH, with a new contender throwing his deep and awesome hat into the ring. Because London already has a Grand Canyone of course, which I always assumed would double nicely as BRITAIN’S GRAND CANYON. But no, apparently Deptford (and its curiously bloody sewage) has a rival in County Durham – the only English county so insecure it needs the word COUNTY in its name.

Marvel at the terrifying landscaping power of WATER, the damp destroyed. Thrill at the way it has gouged MUD (that notoriously stubborn substance) out of the local landscape. And boggle at the way the locals in the piece really think they can compare a ten foot deep trench to
a) a deep ravine
b) Niagara Falls
c) the Grand Canyon.

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Is Lady Gaga The American KLF?*

FT16 comments • 796 views

gaga Frustrating thinkpiece by Ann Powers on Lady Gaga and an apparent turn to theatricality in pop. Frustrating because what I want it to do is zero in a bit more on what Gaga’s “persona” that “never breaks” is and instead it keeps trying to look outward and connect every current dot. There’s plenty of counter-trend stuff out there – worldwide, the Kings Of bloody Leon are as big if not bigger a deal than Gaga – so a macro piece like this is bound to look a bit flimsy. Powers is always insightful and there’s a bunch of good individual points but the whole feels a bit underdone to me.

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