All posts by mark

Concrete and Glass and cinemas 2

After a quick bit of vodcast action (watch the skies folks) it was tine for more Port O Brien.Restored to full rocking glory after the stripped down instore they had the whole room singing along.
All of which prepared us perfectly for our headliner EUROS CHILDS.4th time ‘ve seen EC lately after the Conor and Dodos tours but this was like a different man.A three piece with Pete and Sweet Baboo the set began with the “hits” but became stranger and more incredible the longer it went on as new songs ranged from 70’s funk prog psych to heavy rockers.All I could think while watching the show is that despite his young age Euros has become a national treasure following a path trodden by true artists from Robert Wyatt to Daniel Johnston.Seemingly adrift in their own musical world but making amazing connections to people through the purity of their work and their dedication to their art.Truly inspring.
Our work there done and everyone over the moon with the success of our show we decided not to cap it off with the TVOTR queue but instead to run around the corner for some perfect pop.
Now that we’re in October its going to take a run of amazing records to dislodge Lykke Li from the top end of my AOTY list.
“Youth Novels”is so wonderful and tonight felt like a proper celebration of that a perfect half gig half clun environment Lykke’s 500th gig of the year might have been her best yet.just over 12 months aftet seeing the tentative first show in Stockholm this was a truly exhuberant super confident young women slaying a packed crowd.Think there are plenty of surprises and twists to come from her as she’s a true original Buy that bloody album.

Concrete and Glass and cinemas

Another busy few days in the world of Wichita.
After Bloc’s return to London last Tuesday at a rocking Forum we kept it local over the weekend with the 18th Shoreditch festival of the year “Concrete And Glass’.
Kicked off with a great Port O Brien instore with those lovely folks at Puregroove and then it was down to the serious drinking er gigging.
We started Thursday night with the live return of old mates Good Books.New songs and old alike sounding epic and soaring.Good to have them back.
Nipped around to Favela Chic to catch Little Boots.lots to like about her but the live thing needs a little work yet.
Seems like I wasn’t the only person exited about Bodies of Water finally making it to the uk as the Hoxton Bar + Grill was rammed to the gills.
Don’t know if it was just me who was disappointed tho.a sort of bland proggy vine running through it that did nothing for me at all sadly.
O Death followed them and showed how its done getting the room rocking and hollering in a reminder of earky Pogues raucousness.Good stuff.
Friday left less opportunity for running around as we were hosting our own night at 93 Feet East for the first time since we had a xmas party there in 03 was it?
After a rushed curry at the wonderful Shampeen (its all about the sag uribesi gatta) I hit the decks bang on 7 to wow the first brave souls with my lovers rock could see folks were loving it…..
First band up was Pens.Local favourites and if you’ve run into me in the last couple of months you’ve probably heard quite enough about them already.Awesome as ever we were even treated to a NEW SONG!!Good times.
Next up was Sky larkins third london show in a month and indisputably theri best.Killing it with a great set from the amazing album (wait till you hear it!!)the drive from Leeds to just make the gig was foirgotten as they blew away a packed room.
Then as quicky as they;d come they were gone.Love you Larkin.


Things have been good.maybe too good.too many good records.too many great shows.not enough hours in the day.
Reading/Leeds was very satisfying this year.not a word I use often but from Lovvers to Bloc everyone pulled it off mad style and Los Camp at Reading and both Cribs shows brought actual tears of joy and pride.SMD now cannot be stopped and should actually release some of those wild new edits Conor’s shows only hinted at what was to come last weds
Guess I’ve been watching Conor do shows for 9 years now and if he’s performed with over 100 musicians (as I read somewhere) I must have seen most of them……
Weds night in Camden was up there with anything he’s ever done though.A real band.A great band.He really is as good as those he is often compared to you know.We have an actual legend growing up before us and we’re very lucky to have them.
Oh there’s a new Bloc Party album btw.Couldn’t b log for ages for fear of letting that cat out of the bag…….
Its been a great week for poster art.
A bad week for health.
NP Hex Enduction Hour – The Mighty Fall.Lest we forget……….

Back Again and it is The Incredible…

Did you ever keep a diary when you were a kid? I didn’t
Knew I’d never keep it up.seems I was right.b log2.0 oir whatever we call it it still means writing stuff every day eh and life is for loving right…….
Highlights since last time…….
Paris with Conor.
Japan with Bloc,the Cribs and MBV.
TDD blowing the roof off koko.
Returning to Monnow Valeey for the first time this century with LC!
Its been a great summer………

So here we are again with best intentions.
Inspired by the momentous evening we had last night putting pen to paper with Wichita’s brightest hopes SKY LARKIN.
Watching this band grow of late has been a total joy but nothing had prepared me for the masterpiece of a record they and El Goodo would concoct in Seattle.
Luckily only we’ve heard it so we snuck in there fast.2009’s first classic for sure………..welcome Larkins.
Gonna be another hectic festival weekend so should be plenty to write about.
Remember folks, a blog is for life……..not just for xmas

The End of Days

That’s how Glastonbury sundays always feel.just dragging yourself over the fnishing line.
Daytime’s shitty line up didn’t help.seemed like most of the uk”s shittest bands played at least once over the weekend and sometimes you wondered if you weren’t at the radio one roadshow waiting for DLT.
Things finally got going at 4 with the arrival of stars.just like at coachella they seemd suited to a sunday afternoon slot and played everything I could have hoped to hear.if you’ve never bought a stars record you owe it to yourself.
Climbed all the way up the hill while Ronson murdered the jam in a hilariously modern way amd took my seat for Caribou.
Talk about righjt band right place.with the faders set to psych Dan and the boys went right out even further than usual as the green surrpundings just seemed to intensify the pastoral nature of their big drummed psychedelia.Right up there with the best sets of the weekend for me.
100 yards down the hill to watch Sky Larkin on the BBC Introducing stage.
Brimming with new found confidemce and having just got back from recording their debut album the set sounded like a greatest hits run through and showed again thjat somewhere along the road these kids learned how to ROCK!
Then made the epic trek over to jazz world to see King Solomon Burke being lowered into his enprmous gold frame.
Much like with Candi on friday its hard not to be blown away by the heritage and history before you.starting with “that’s how I got to mephis” we went through severla decades of hits from him and his friends and while it veered towards cheesy now and then the voice was still there and you felt honoured to be in his presence
Then it was time for one more act before lights out.
Tempted by Derriclk May with Stars folks but decide to see MMJ’s first uk festival headline.their bonnaroo sets have ecome legendary but they give them the chance to play for hours on end and a disappointed jim seemed to be just hitting his stride and hour or so in beofre the curfew came and the plug was pulled.still great to have them back here tho.
There was other stuff I’m sure but hey man if you can remember glastonbury you weren’t there right folks?
It won’t be remembered as a vintage year but there’s still nothing quite like it in the world.

Another Day

So much for keeping it live…..Saturday was great.dry and sunny.
Los Camp started it off with an absolute cracker much as they had last year.12 months on and older and woser they ripped through their set and totally suited the big stage and screens.a top job.
Then saw a bit of black kids which left me very on the fence.some great songs but as a whole its still not quite there for me.better than most of their peers though.
Neon Neon were extraordinary set put just about everyone else over the weekend to mindblowing that that’s gruff’s third full set of differetn material with different bands between this year and last.Har Mar spat headtands.gruff read a magazine.the sun was awesome.

Bit of a blur after that.
Hung with The Cribs and LC.went up to see Kool Keith not only show up but deliver a crowd pleasing set of the hits in that werd ‘here’s a medley from each of my personas” thing that he’s been doing.still unique and he seemed to enjoy it year maybe we can have a gruff/keith set.that would do me.

Back down the hill for SMD’s dj set.with Jas in the delivery room it was left to Mr Ford to deliver a cracking set to the dancing hordes and there’s still a thrill to hear 1000’s singing Hustler like that.
One last pit stop and then over to the main stage for the main event of the day.
Wino was running late so saw the last half of that.someone help her eh?
Then Jay Zoh jay Z.better writers than I will cover this in depth I’m sure but from my spot in the biggest main stage crowd I’ve seen there maybe ever it was fantastic.the intro was briliantly judged.the freestyles breathtaking and the charisma palpable even from half a mile away.
Could have done with Beyonce or Rhianna but that’s splitting hairs.He seemed very aware of where he was and the significance of the show and in contrast to let’s say a Wyclef show (hello germany!)had put some thought into it and put in a unique showthe truly memorable part of the whole weekend……..

Day Three

So that ended up pretty good yesterday,bit of an old folks day but the good times rolled…..
Starting with Candi Staton who did everything you could ever want to hear including her amazing version of In The Ghetto (tho not stand by your man) and got everyone smiling and raving to You Got The Love.
Things got a bit darker for The Duke Spirit on The Park stage but Leila had a blinder and they rocked it.
Ran into Lykke Li which is always nice and then gathered will all the other wise folks for the mighty Edwyn Collins.starting with falling and laughing and taking us through his whole career the effect was as stunning as it was indoors at dingwalls last year.Everyone is aware of Edwyn’s recent medical issues but to watch this show is just to see an amazing writer and performer as good as he’s ever been.
With half of Aztec Camera in tow!wonderful.
Wish I could say the same about john cale.another hero but just didn’t do it today.
Stopped in to see A Trak dropping a more pop dance set than I expected for Radio 1 before regrouping for the Crbs headlining slot at the john peel stage .
Over an hour of mad singalongs ensued and the atmosphere in the tent was amazing.We were treated to one new song which was an absolute belter and makes me very excited for the next record,
Rounded of the day watching the telly coverage of the main stages and were thankful we hadn’t been near them all day.
No rain overnight and its almost Los Campesinos time…….

Day Two

Well we didn’t leave.and it isn’t exactly raining.BUT it is muddy everywhere and guess who forgot his wellies ?!
Just watched half of glasvegas.think they need to go see mbv.
Mission now is to buy wellies and make it the 3 muddy miles to see Candi Staton……

Just When You Thought It Was Safe

So we got in
But now at 10.15 we’re already wishing we hadn’t.
Remind me why we’re here ?
Endured an hour of guilty pleasures (soooo much cooler than School Disco eh?) and about a minute of Santogold (rubbish) and now back on the bus hoping to catch the football.
Spain v Germany eh?
Clinging to the hope that my germany to win prediction mighjt be right but then I’m also hoping that the sun will be out tomorrow……..