Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Preview: Chemical Brothers 6th album

The Chemical Brothers have announced they will release We Are The Night on June 18th on Virgin and that they will headline the Other Stage at Glastonbury the following week Their sixth album will drop around the same time as the debuts from young duo’s Digitalism, Justice and Simian Mobile Disco and should prove that the Chem’s are still the daddies of dance (it’s their most ravesome album yet). It features Saturate which has been doing the rounds in the clubs under the guise of Electronic Battle Weapon 9 and collaborations with Willy Mason, Fatlip (ex Pharcyde) and Midlake (the heart aching closer The Pills Won’t Help You Now). The standout tracks on first listen are All Rights Reversed and forthcoming single Do It Again featuring Klaxons and Ali Love respectively. Tom’n’Ed have clearly been hanging out in Shoreditch recruiting some young pups to their cause!

Friday, April 20, 2007

Review: Jack Peñate, Pure Groove, London 19.04.07

For someone with a surname similar to that of a traditional, violent, Mexican, sweet-grabbing, papier-mâché-smashing game, it was good to discover Jake Peñate did not need to be hit with a stick to get the treats. The sunny April afternoon saw the seminal but tiny Pure Groove record shop filled to the brim and boiling over with fans, with some forced into watching through the windows from the street outside.

He started his short but splendid set by belting out new single 'Spit At Stars', a wonderful blend of guitar pop, soul and charm. His set also included a version of the more ballad-esque 'My Yvonne' that received full vocal audience participation. They may not have been the best at grasping the harmonies, but ten out of ten for effort. Another highlight was the racy 'Second Minute or Hour'. This came after Jack’s witty (and apparently hangover induced) anecdotes about nothing of any importance, his Bob Dylan and Morrissey impressions and something random about balding twelve year olds. The strange crowd banter didn't detract from the music though, with Jack nailing every song with whole-hearted feeling and charisma.

So, is this cheeky South London lad as hot right now as he’s been made out to be? On the evidence of this performance yes. And if he fails to win you over with his music, then the mischievous grin and happy manner will get you.

Jack Peñate's Myspace
Jack Peñate's Website
Pure Groove

News: Field Day, Victoria Park, London 11.08.07

Aiming to make a mark in an already jam packed summer festival schedule is Field Day put together by London’s best alternative concert and club promoters and promising to bring a super cool line-up to East London's Victoria Park.

Eat Your Own Ears, Adventures In The Beetroot Field, Bugged Out! and Homefires are behind this unique event that is going for the mood of a psychedelic village fete plus a cutting edge line-up of bands and DJs including Foals (pictured), 1990s, Pull Tiger Tail, Absentee, Archie Bronson Outfit, Erol Alkan, Four Tet, Metronomy and much much more to be announced. And as if that wasn't enough there’ll be bunting, hay bales, hog roasts and a tombola. Woo-hoo!

Eat Your Own Ears promoter Tom Baker says: “We wanted to create an event that had a really strong but somewhat different line up to other festivals, something that has a European feeling where new exciting rock bands play alongside electronic acts and also include more diverse and leftfield acts.”

Sounds good to me.

Field Day will be held at Victoria Park on Saturday 11th August and will be from midday to 10:30pm.
Tickets are onsale now, at the reasonable price of £22.50. But hurry! There are only 5000 places to be snapped up…


Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Review: Ed Banger Revue, Canvas London, 14.4.07

Saturday April 14th saw probably the most anticipated label party since DJ Hell’s Gigolo’s stormed London in December 2001. About 80% of the Ed Banger roster were present and correct (Mehdi is off on his own tour at the moment) with label boss Busy P, Justice, Uffie, Feadz, Sebastian and even sleeve designer So Me in town. The queue outside Canvas was huge from 10pm and inside Banger fans headed straight to the rave podiums to dance to So Me’s old school hip hop and SebastiAn’s noisy beat driven electro. Busy P played his current hit Rainbow Man before announcing Uffie to the stage. Uffie’s mic was dogged with technical problems which was a shame but she still looked cool in an Ed Banger t shirt she cut up with a pair of scissors moments before show time. Her beau and producer Feadz followed with some fierce scratching over vintage house before Justice took to the decks to showcase some new tunes from their forthcoming album. The last hour was a jam from all the artists and the music was as wayward you would expect when there are 12 hands on deck: a lot of hip hop followed by Lesley Gore’s ‘It’s My Party’, Carpenters ‘Close to You’ and Cardigans ‘Love Fool’. Justice concluded the party with their own pure pop new single D.A.N.C.E. before we all left blinking into the sunlight at 6am.

Review: Uffie's Igloo Rave Up, Mayrhofen, Austria, 12.4.07

The Snowbombing festival in Mayrhofen, Austria concluded last night, a week’s worth of snowboarding by day and then raving at night (I met some chaps that hadn’t quite made it up the slopes after five days there and who could blame them with the likes of Switch, Justice and Sunshine Underground on offer). The most memorable night was Thursday's igloo rave; 150 revellers were escorted 2000 feet up a mountain in a huge cable car to an igloo complete with a bar made of ice. Yes it was a bit chilly but you forgot about the cold after five Jagermeister shots. Clare from People Are Germs and Uffie played some salacious hip hop (remember that DJ Assault track – 'Ass and Titties'? Uffie played that which perhaps reveals where she got her potty mouth from) and Camden’s finest Filthy Dukes almost melted the place with their party electro classics. Other highlights included queueing up for a wee in a bucket, dancing in the snow and gamboling back down part of the mountain to the cable car for a hair raising ride back in the pitch black.

News: Simian Mobile Disco - Compilation/Competition/Album

Simian Mobile Disco's awesome rave comp 'Bugged Out! presents Suck My Deck with Simian Mobile Disco' described by our very own Dummy Monthly as 'Fucking great fun - a dirty, pounding, yet witty set' is in the shops this week. The comp features tracks and remixes from Klaxons, Joakim, James Holden, Switch, Buraka Som Sistema and Simian Mobile Disco themselves. They have also just announced details of a competition to win a DJ set at one fan's house party that should be called 'Simian Mobile Disco Are Playing at My House' if it's not already (and i've just found it is so there you go!). Details at the band's website. And as if that's not enough going on for the duo they are also releasing their debut album 'Attack Decay Sustain Release' on June 18th through Wichita. Buraka!

Monday, April 16, 2007

News: Envelopes Video/Dates/Single

Swedish/French pop experimentalists Envelopes are back with a new single 'Smoke in the Desert, Eating the Sand, Hide in the Grass' out April 30th on limited edition 7" single on Brille. They are also playing dates in London this week:

Tuesday April 17th - White Heat @ Madame Jojo's with Operator Please and Good Shoes
Thursday April 19th - Artrocker stage @ Purple Turtle, Camden Crawl
Friday April 20th - The Enterprise @ Camden Crawl
Saturday April 21st - Clash Club @ The Luminaire

To celebrate their new single and return to London they have made a cool screensaver to give away as a free download. you can get it here.

Disclaimer: Paul Benney works for Brille Records

Sunday, April 15, 2007

Back Issues: Get Them While You Can

All Dummy Magazine back issues are now £3.50 including postage and packing and we'll get any that you order straight out to you in the next day's post. We're actually on our fifth issue now believe it or not:

Issue 0 featured Dizzee Rascal on the cover photographed by Sean Ellis plus interviews with The Futureheads, Bloc Party, LCD Soundsystem Josh Homme, Casey Spooner, Johnny Borrell, Billy Childish, Lauren Laverne, Stephen Morris, Erol Alkan plus some beautiful pictures of some synthesisers (we should do more of this kind of thing). It was also quite a big format and features some great illustrations so snap them up while you can. Copies are very limited

Issue 1 featured Lady Sovereign on the front cover and the final interview with Test Icicles and some great live photos on the back cover. It also featured a great piece on ladies in grime (beautiful pics by Derek Ridgers), Tiga by Wolfgang Tillmans, Mystery Jets, Be Your Own Pet, Nathan Fake, Forward Russia, Good Shoes, JME &Skepta, Justice, Larrikin Love, New Young Pony Club, The Noisettes, Becky Stark, Bookashade, Klaxons, Plan B, Sons and Daughters, Clap Your Hands Say Yeah, The Knife, Graham Coxon, Paul Epworth, Goldfrapp, Adam Green, Kraftwerk's Ralf Hutter and Sway. The first issue of the new design and format

Issue 2 featured Dirty Pretty Things on the front cover and Klaxons (first ever cover) on the back. Plus The Raconteurs, Futureheads, The Rapture, Altern 8(!), The Fratellis, Boys Noise, Newham Generals, Mr Hudson, Bat For Lashes, Ghetto, Xerox Teens, Digitalism, Konrad Black, Digital Mystikz, Dolly Daggers, Get Cape, Wear Cape, Fly, The Gossip, The Horrors, Tapes n Tapes, Tiny Dancers, You Say Party! We Say Die!, Kitsune, Jamie T, Lily Allen, The Pipettes, Professor Green, the Horrors, Aphex Twin, Peaches, Luciano, Nick Zinner, Dan Sartain and Thurston Moore. Good issue

Issue 3 featured The Killers on the front cover and Jamie T on the back. Plus Young and Lost, Love is All, The Long Blondes, Faris Rotter, Saam, Adventure Playground, Kitty Daisy and Lewis, Late of the Pier, Ali Love, Man Like Me, Pull Tiger Tail, Shameless, Uffie, Chamillionnaire, Wolfmother, Slayer, Ellen Alien, Hot Chip, The Mars Volta, Albert Hammond Junior, Ed Banger, Charlotte Gainsbourg, Delete Yourself, Anti Social, Trailer Trash, White Heat, The Streets, Yourcodenameis:Milo, Jack Penate, Adele, Jeremy Warmsley, Mr David Viner and Emmy the Great

Issue 4 features Bloc party photographed by Wolfgang Tillmans, The Horrors interviewed by Andrew Perry plus Foals, Operator Please, Sinden, Joe Lean and the Jing Jang Jong, jamie Woon, Johnny Flynn, Distance, Noze, Kaiser Chiefs' Nick Hodgson, Patrick Wolf, CSS' Lovefoxx, The Shins' James Mercer, Willy Mason, Mark Ronson, Klaxons and their fans, Kate Nash, DMZ, Gallows, Good Shoes and Simian Mobile Disco. Best issue yet. Of course

You can buy any or all of the above here for £3.50 each and postage and packing is free
You can get also get the latest issue from any Borders store or local indie record shop or newsagent...or you can download the whole issue for free as a pdf podcast from here


Saturday, April 14, 2007

Dummy Blog EP of the week: 'Under Giant Trees' by Efterklang

Accordions, glitches, chilly sine waves, English lyrics with a Nordic accent, percussion that sounds like a robot made out of wooden kitchen implements – when I first heard Efterklang I dismissed them as a mere tribute to Múm. But although a Greatest Hits compilation from the hopelessly inconsistent Múm might just about beat Efterklang's 2005 Tripper, Efterklang may still turn out to be the better band. And the more you listen to them, the more you realise that comparisons to Múm are nearly irrelevant. While Múm are born out of folk, Efterklang make a sort of apocalyptic orchestral pop – they're the On The Beach Boys, less intimate but more frightening. As with bands like Emery Reel, the sentiment I hear the loudest in Efterklang's music is grief over having been unable to prevent some enormity from taking place

Under Giant Trees is an appetiser for Efterklang's imminent second album, with its five songs apparently 'developed as a way for the band to add variety to their sets while touring'. Be that as it may, nothing here is actually much of a departure from Tripper: Efterklang have not gone hyphy. Instead, it's another cinematic half hour of mournful choirs, ice-crystal electronics, and epic strings (now from Sigur Rós collaborators amiina), a collision reminiscent often of Bjork's Homogenic, which is just what I was hoping for. (Admittedly there are a few new sounds, including a koto, some proper shouting, and – strangely sad and evocative – a clipped sample of what sounds like lift mechanics grinding away.) Efterklang are that rare thing: deeply experimental and deeply moving at the same time. And what most stands out about these songs is their structural complexity: jump through them thirty seconds at a time, and you'll find something different every time you land. Like Sonic Youth songs – or, indeed, like classical music, which is probably the more apt comparison – there aren't really any obvious verses or choruses, just an entrancing, succession of sections and ideas. I'm not sure there's anything on Under Giant Trees to equal, say, Monopolist from Tripper, but it should be enough to get you very excited about the next LP.


Out now on Leaf

Thursday, April 12, 2007

Tiny Masters of Today, Tottenham Court Road Fopp, London, 14.4.07

There were some kids at this gig in nu-rave robes who were so tiny they not only weren't born when rave started, but possibly weren't even born when nu-rave started. As you could see from the graffiti on the bed-sheet behind the stage, Fopp has hosted dozens of bands from the all-ages gigs scene, and, although it's not a scene that impresses me much, you can't complain about the chance to see Tiny Masters of Today. After my interview last week, I don't have much to add about Ivan and Ada, but, despite the awful sound, they were awesome – particularly their un-ironic cover of House of Pain's Jump Around, with Ivan squealing away instead of a saxophone sample.

Monday, April 09, 2007

Red eye

Sweden's Studio have got a number of things going for them. Obviously, they're Swedish, which automatically gives them a degree of intellectual cool but they're also making the kind of music that makes me want to scoot down to Soul Jazz and snap it up straight away. For some reason, I don't want to buy music like this online and have it roll up on my doorstep along with the rest of the post. I want to take the time to take the train, walk from Charing Cross to Soho, perhaps dropping into Maison Bertaux for a coffee and a macaroon and go and buy it - with cash. Then I want to look at the sleeve all the way home because, boy, the design on this shit is lovely. All stylish boys should own one of their T Shirts.

What do they sound like?

There's no need to dance to their mostly instrumental architecture when you can hear it for yourself at www.myspace.com/sstudio

Friday, April 06, 2007

Laura Veirs, The 100 Club, London, 4.4.2007

Laura Veirs seems to be a gentle woman, so it's always a surprise how angry she sounds when she's singing. There's just something about her voice, particularly at gigs: her tone is as if the band before her, for some reason, have played a series of inept covers of her own songs, and now, understandably irritable, she has to show everyone much better she can do them herself. Still, as TV seducers always say, 'You're beautiful when you're angry', and Veirs does sing beautifully – also, the density of butterflies and mermaids and flowers in her lyrics might get a bit cloying if there weren't a few smudges of black cloud overhead. (Sometimes she coos through a reverb pedal, which is nice, but when it's still on her voice when she says, like, 'It's really good to be in London,' it spoils the magic somehow – I mean, it's not as if I really believed she was singing from inside some kind of mystical cave during the chorus, but it just feels wrong.)

Tonight was the first gig since the release of Saltbreakers, Veirs' sixth album, and consequently also the first gig when we were officially watching 'Laura Veirs and the Saltbreakers', not just 'Laura Veirs (plus some guys with beards)'. Onomastic fusion with your backing band must be a big commitment, a bit like moving in with a boyfriend, but the Saltbreakers - on drums, bass, and keyboards, with matching embroidered suits - look like dependable fellows. (Not that they were visible very often between the 100 Club's absurd pillars.) They did a nice job of singing their own names on the album's title track, although that might just have been their awkward way of saying hello.

Saltbreakers is a good album. They brought up 'art rock' in the Guardian review today, which is going a bit far, but what they meant is that it's a continuation of the twinkling folk-pop of 2005's Year of Meteors rather than the rather barer folk/alt-country of Veirs' previous records. (Listen for very, very faint shouts of 'Judas!') On stage, this is a lot more entertaining than unaccompanied plucking probably would have been (although some older 'hits' wouldn't have gone amiss, especially instead of the strangely subdued songs that Veirs chose for the encore). Phantom Mountain, the closest thing to straight rock Veirs has ever done, was awesome, and two things happened that are not supposed to happen at what is assumed to be a folk gig: 1. a few people danced and 2. Veirs dangled her guitar in front of the amp as if she was in Mogwai or something!

Sunday, April 01, 2007

Just another day at the office?

I'm not going to bother reviewing the dubstep squat party in Shoreditch on Friday because Martin Clarke has already done a sterling (and clearly not very hungover) job of it on blackdownsoundboy.blogspot.com. Let's just say it was epic.

In an associated thought, any fans of the increasingly interesting crossover between dubstep and techno should check out Appleblim's new outing on Skull Disco. It sounded like a big glitchy cliff coming out of the speakers at FWD>>.