Posts from 2018

31
Dec 18

Wiki-illiams Quizz 2018. Round 1

FT13 comments • 366 views

RUBRIC: welcome to the FreakyTrigger wing of a quiz sat for a hundred and funfty years by some lucky/isle of man schoolkids etc blah blah bloop. Themed sets of 10 questions each — a new one every day (or so). COLLABORATIN’ COMMENT CREW (C3) pile in — we can work it out

RULEZ: Don’t put googled answers up till after the next question appears — to let others show off their BRANES — and note where they are googled (or borrowed off of rival sites with good answers). OFF WE GO!

(If you are on old LiveJournalista, WELCOME KOMRADE, yes we are trying out a move here in decadent capitalist pop blog. I don’t know if the FT/wordpress comments can support the hot action, or if the stone cold will to quizz is even there. Let’s find out)

ROUND 1 During 1918:

1 Where did whose reign last for 66 days?

»
More

29
Dec 18

ATOMIC KITTEN – “The Tide Is High (Get The Feeling)”

Popular31 comments • 3,683 views

#935, 7th September 2002

Sometimes when this project stalls it’s because there’s a song too tricky or terrible to write about. You might think that’s the case here: it’s not. “The Tide Is High (Got The Feeling)” is indeed terrible, but its wretchedness is banal, readily apparent. There’s nothing here to get your head around: it’s a bad cover version, in an era of bad cover versions, performed mechanically by a band whose character was deliberately bleached out of them when success hit. There’s no long term plan, no devilishly clever marketing scheme – in fact the marketing is as transparent as the rest of the record.

»
More

18
Dec 18

The Freaky Trigger Movie Poll 2018

Do You See2 comments • 158 views

“Hi I am an absence of a framing device, and welcome to the annual Freaky Trigger Film and TV Polls”

Thanks, absence of a framing device and welcome to the fourth annual film poll and the second TV poll. The rules are simple – rank your top twenty in both categories IN ORDER and send your vote to:

ftfilmpoll AT gmail DOT com

As long as the film or TV show was properly released in UK cinemas or shown on UK TV in some form (VOD / Multi-Platform) in 2018 in the UK it will be counted. I may be a little more forgiving with TV seeing the multiple ways people watch it, but if anyone votes for Breaking Bad I will shut the whole thing down. You don’t have to vote in both polls. You don’t have to list a full twenty – I’ll take whatever you’ve got. If you want to mention a worst in each category I may do a post about that too. The deadline to submit is 3pm on New Years Day because you might be watching movies up to midnight (again all other film polls neglect this point).

Your number 1 will get more points than your 20. And to make the final countdown, it must have at least two people voting for it and remember, nearly all of last years award winners and a lot of 2017 Cannes darlings were released in the UK in 2018, so I think the start of this year is not without contenders.

So remember:
– The order of your top 20 is important! Your #1 will be allocated more points than #20.
– If you can’t think of 20 items then 10 or 14 or 1 is just fine.
And see you for the rundown in January.
*Cos to qualify at lest two people have to nominate it.

16
Dec 18

The 20th Freaky Trigger Annual Between Christmas And New Year Pub Crawl: The Holloway Road Poker

Pumpkin Publog13 comments • 407 views

(A poker as in the kind that comes from a set with a shovel, and a brush that is more ornamental than useful when setting a fire)

Twenty years of the Freaky Trigger Annual Between Christmas And New Year Pub Crawl (or the #FTABCANYPC) and this year we are discovering what all the food and drink supplements are calling “that bit of Holloway Road that has a good Malaysian restaurant on it”. Starting at 3pm on the 29th December, we will take in some interesting architecture, some refurbs, some new purpose builds, a Spoons and a pub which purports to have a crazy golf course in it. I KNOW, right?

The route is:

»
More

15
Dec 18

Omargeddon #5: Cryptomnesia

FTPost a comment • 138 views

This is the cover art for the album Cryptomnesia by the artist El Grupo Nuevo de Omar Rodriguez-Lopez. The cover art copyright is believed to belong to the label, Rodriguez Lopez Productions, or the graphic artist(s). (for the picture description as per fair use terms).Most Omar Rodriguez-Lopez albums are released under his name, but there a few variations: El Trío de Omar Rodriguez-Lopez, the Omar Rodriguez-Lopez Quartet, the Omar Rodriguez-Lopez Quintet, and when touring, the Omar Rodriguez-Lopez Group, (though Woman Gives Birth to Tomato! was also released under this name). And then there’s El Grupo Nuevo de Omar Rodriguez-Lopez, the least literal and most tongue-in-cheek of them all.

Omar’s “new group” consisted of himself, Juan Alderete, Zach Hill, Jonathan Hischke, and Cedric Bixler-Zavala. He may just as well have called it “I Can’t Believe It’s Not The Mars Volta!” and in many ways, it’s the Volta album everyone was expecting but didn’t get with “acoustic pop album” Octahedron, released the same year. Cedric admitted it himself, noting “if anyone’s bummed that Octahedron is too simple or too pop, they can buy [this] album and it’ll take them right back to that [heavier] kind of sound. It’s one of my favourite things I’ve ever worked on. It’s pretty much a Mars Volta record, just without Thomas [Pridgen], Ikey [Owens], and Marcel [Rodriguez-Lopez].”

When I listen to Cryptomnesia, which is fairly often, I feel like I’m snuggled in a beloved, decade-old Fair Isle knit jumper covered with intricate, brightly coloured patterns. Unfortunately, it’s also very itchy in places, to the point where I have to rip it off and stash it away for a while. And then I remember how pretty and warm it is, so I eventually come back to it.

»
More

7
Dec 18

when the gang chooses you: or how the
puffin club turned me into a punk rocker

Hidden Landscapes4 comments • 295 views

[This post originally went up at my PATREON: subscribers get to read posts and hear podcasts early — and help offset costs and time and help me do more of this kind of thing. Please share widely and encourage participation in the comments!]

This is a lightly edited extract from a piece I wrote for Frank Kogan’s fanzine WHY MUSIC SUCKS (#11, pub.June 1997). The topic was “My First Record”; some of the tone is me not quite sure at that time who I am as a writer any more, especially in this context. All the square-bracket interpolations and footnoted annotations are new.

[…] The first LP I bought was almost certainly Slapp Happy’s Slapp Happy [in 1976]. It was on bargain offer in a local shop, and I remember the grins on the faces of the shop girls when I took it off their hands. But it was very nearly – which would have been hilarious – Metal Machine Music, which was in the same bargain bin. For some reason I decided against MMM. I think that I decided it was too popular: or – since this makes no sense – that someone I knew would have bought it, so I didn’t need to.

»
More

2
Dec 18

The Freaky Trigger Readers’ Poll 2018

FT8 comments • 413 views

Greetings, I am the renowned, cross-eyed clairvoyant, Mystic Meg. I’m here, to predict, in a deliberately awkward intonation, that the numbers 3826546, and i, and the colour “bergerac”, will be impoooortant. People who stock up on olives, and loo paper, and prosecco, will be lucky in the post-Brexit bartering economyyyyyy. If you doubt, the accuracy, of my prognosis, then you can take it up with the Broadcasting Standards Authorityyyyyy.

Thanks Mystic Meg. The Freaky Trigger 2018 poll is now open!

Rules are copied and pasted from last year:

– Choose up to 20 of your favourite tracks of 2018. I am extremely unlikely to check release dates, but if one of your choices appeared in last year’s poll, I’ll get in touch and ask you to choose another track.
– If you don’t have 20 tracks then 10 or 3 or even 1 is fine.
– If you like, put them in order (#1 will get more points than #20), otherwise I’ll assign them a random order.
– Email them to poptimistspoll2010@gmail.com by 23.59pm GMT on 31st December.
– If you are reading this, you are eligible to vote!

Bonus orgafun: tell us one (1) album you enjoyed in 2018. These won’t be ranked, I’ll just post the list of everyone’s choices at the end.

That’s your lot! Feel free to plug your own picks in the comments.

4
Nov 18

Omargeddon #4: Weekly Mansions

FT1 comment • 142 views


I’ve been stuck in a funk of late. Sadly, not a George Clinton-flavoured funk, but a stank, stuck funk of my own making. My compulsive need to trace the original sources for all the revised riffs, beats, and samples that crop up in later Omar Rodriguez-Lopez projects has proved a lot more difficult than I thought it would be, and I thought it would be fairly difficult. And yet, I deluded myself into thinking it would all fall into place. It is, but at a frustratingly glacial pace, and I’m growing resigned to the fact that my attempt to construct an orderly timeline is a fool’s errand.

This is the album that made me want to track this path in the first place. Released in late 2016 on the Ipecac Recordings label as part of Omar’s 24-album back catalog catch-up, Weekly Mansions feels both soothingly familiar and brand-new. Many of the albums in this series can (sort of) be easily identified as a complete album remixed and reimagined; this feels like a bridge linking the more guitar-driven and distortion-fuzzed earlier releases via a silky thread of instrumental segues and sound manipulation. If this were an aural equivalent to a magic eye poster, I’d gaze into it crosseyed, hoping for an optical illusion of The Mars Volta to appear.

Dubbed “an eclectic exploration of neo-electro-dance”, it’s a totally guitar-free collaboration between Omar and his brother Marcel (aka Eureka The Butcher), which positively heaves with bleepy joy. I would fervently press it into the hands of all my friends, were a physical edition available. Such is my deep and abiding love for it that I rate it as highly as I do Old Money, and I do not say that lightly.

»
More

26
Oct 18

the other kind of industrial

Hidden LandscapesPost a comment • 614 views

[This post originally went up at my PATREON: subscribers get to read posts and hear podcasts early — and help offset costs and time and help me do more of this kind of thing. Please share widely and encourage participation in the comments!]

Like many teenagers in the UK 40+ years ago, my non-school culture was basically two things: the music weeklies and strikes. One time my late colleague Steven Wells was reviewing a biography of Richard Branson for NME (Mick Brown’s I assume, published in 1988). “The 70s were a bad time for strikes,” said the book. No! wrote Swellsy, angrily and hilariously, the 70s were a BRILLIANT time for strikes. Management wrong, workers right, the side without resources flexing its collective muscle, the three-day week, no electricity for days on end, no one clears away the rubbish or even the dead… sorry, but for any distrustful, easily distracted young person this was all just great, as well as perfectly and morally correct.

»
More

19
Sep 18

“ITES, REEL”

FT + Hidden Landscapes2 comments • 498 views

Being a melancholy appreciation on his passing of this nation’s pioneering reggae writer: the great PENNY REEL

“Sing great song, down inna Babylon, show them your culture, down inna Babylon”
— ‘M.P.L.A.’, Tapper Zukie

It was October 1978, and the NME interview-feature was titled ‘The Keith Hudson Affair: A Dread Tale’. It was written by Penny Reel, it was about this same singer-producer, Keith Hudson — who had of course worked with Ken Boothe, John Holt, Delroy Wilson and King Tubby’s toaster-DJ U-Roy, as well as Big Youth — and it launched into itself as follows:

“ONE NIGHT I AM standing outside the Jamaican pattie shop in Portobello Road partaking of the same when a car pulls up on the street and from it emerge certain characters from Kilburn by the name of Militant Barrington, Tapper Zukie and Jah Lacey, which is by no means an unusual combination to see, as these are very intimate idren and frequently keep each other’s company, except that now there is a fourth person with them in the rear approach, one known as King Saul.

»
More