You Animals/The Strange Death Of Liberal England/ The Holloways/A Guide To Your Summer/ The Best New Bands & loads More
We Do What We Like And We Like What We Do Welcome to the first of what we hope to be many Abolish Confusion Magazines. Yes, we are an ëonline magazineí but we are just like any of those you find on the selves of W H Smiths that you read when waiting for a train, the difference is, you can take this off the shelf without it costing a penny. Bonus! Not only that, but weíve made it so you can read it on your iPad (or your choice of digital reading devise) whilst sunning yourself on your holidays. Itís the summer, which is always a good time, the weather is nice but more importantly itís festival season and this year there seems to be something exciting going on every weekend until the sun goes down. We will be taking you through where to go and who to see this summer, helping you stay ahead of the game. Abolish Confusion was born out of the frustration of seeing our passions being ignored. With a team of enthusiastic opinionated individuals based all over the UK we hope to introduce you to what we love. We love popular culture, our aim to introduce you to the new waves of culture before it becomes popular.
In This Issues - NEWS - INTERVIEW: THE HOLLOWAYS - FESTIVAL REVIEWS - FESTIVAL PREVIEWS - INTERVIEW: THE STRANGE DEATH OF LIBERAL ENGLAND - REVIEW: PATRICK WOLF - A GUIDE TO.. .NYC - INTERVIEW: YOU ANIMALS - FEATURE: CREATIVITY - INTRODUCING... - FEATURE: TRASH & VAUDEVILLE - PRESENTS...
What’s been going (news, if you like) Chart bothering
Every couple of years the chart gets invaded by a star, few of these stick around but those that do become icons, representing an era.
Trends come and go, quicker than a case is filed. Similarly most bubble exploding into the grasps of those n banjos and ukuleles were dominan fan last summer, guitars were back louder than ever, reminiscing the n grunge and shoegaze. You could arg what with Biffy Clyro crossing over Chemical Romance becoming acce years NME Awards was full of band associate with Kerrang.
Over the past twelve months we have seen a return for a number of post-millenium stars who have all shone and back to form. In the pop market we’ve seen Britney Spears release her most daring album yet trying to keep up with the Lady GaGa phenomena, who ended a six month promotional campaign last month for her second full length album, which topped charts everywhere. The indie circuit saw the return of The Strokes who are almost ‘godfather’ status after mastering the sound which went on to influence so many others including Arctic Monkeys, their fourth album, Suck It and See is their best yet. Dizzee Rascal might have helped the UK urban scene, spawning the likes of N-Dubz and Tinie Tempah but Eminem and Kayne West returned to form and showed us Brits how it is done with their creations. You might think these are watered down versions of what is going on underground, you are probably right to a degree but these represent our generation. Our parents bang-on about The Beatles, Bowie and The Stones, our kids will be asking us about these lot. Mainstream music hasn’t been this diverse in years, embrace it and be proud of it, just because you little sister listens to GaGa it doesn’t mean it is rubbish, pop has changed. Bubble gum has gone, X-Factor is going and genres are blending like when The Rolling Stones turned blues into pop.
There are a few, mostly English ban inspiration from Nirvana, Pavement their own fresh take on the sound. Y and delicate debut album back in F what of a slow burner, at the time o to get on many playlists, now Radio basis. The band members had only Cobain died in the mid-nineties bu other bands, who are still together, Pavement and Mudhoney have been new generation.
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a new Michael Jackson court e underground before not seeking it out. Whilst nt amongst the ‘leftfield’ music in under the surface and nineties American sound of gue that this was inevitable r into popular culture and My eptable over recent times, this ds you would commonly
nds who are currently taking t and Sonic Youth but adding Yuck released their distorted February and it has become so of release they were struggling o 1 air their singles on a regular just learnt to walk when Kurt ut his influence, along with in one way or another, Pixies, n given a new lease of life for a
he revitalised trend thanks to but failed to sparkle with it’s t was followed up by Primary his then flooded East London amy lo-fi echoes, helping spawn Whatever the trend, there is popularity and that will be who write brilliant noisy guitar g into tight jeans and pruning ndon lot can be guilty of that.
A Shift In Power Reading through this issue you will discover how the music industry has changed and a lot of people have suffered, not just the bands but record labels too. Generally, when you think of record labels there are two kings, the ‘evil’ major labels and the ‘heroic’ independants. There is a huge difference between the indies, some work from their bedrooms, others work with the majors. We all moan about how the majors ruining the industry but if it wasn’t for them there would be no industry. Then think about the indies and you think Rough Trade, XL and Domino who are a far cry from those small ones carrying the D.I.Y. ethos. These three have all had their moments over the last decade, Rough Trade took on The Strokes and The Libertines, Domino captured Franz Ferdinand and Arctic Monkeys, now it is XL’s turn who currently hous some of the most relevant artists around today, most noteably Adele who is topping the charts everywhere with her middle of the road music. They recently put out Tyler, The Creator’s album, Tyler is part of Odd Future, hip-hop’s next hero’s. The Horrors are set to put out their forthcoming album on XL who also had the late Gill Scott-Heron on their books. Their roster is as diverse as labels come with no pattern of jumping on bandwagon trends, instead they create them in a natural progression. They are to forward thinking, the majors cannot keep up.
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Digital Revolution - Take 5 It’s been an interesting few weeks with new plans on the battle against internet piracy. iTunes have confirmed the launch of their ‘cloud’ service to compete with Spotify but on a much larger scale. This will allow users to access an incredible amount of music, save them on ‘clouds’ (basically invisible harddrives) and listen to them where ever you are. To be honest, I’m not completely comfortable with MP3’s compared to the tangible platforms in any format. Lady GaGa backed this up recently after her record selling new album went on Amazing for 99 cents, the singer said it is worth nothing more as it is invisible. Kaiser Chiefs surprised everybody that they still exsisted when they gave away a new song, just days later they released a new ‘album’. I say album, they offer twenty songs then ‘you’, the ‘fan’ get to choose your favourite ten and put them in your own order, the ‘fan’ can also design their own artwork then pay £7.50 for this ‘privellage’! Is this novel or lazy? Is it not the band who should create ten songs that fit together perfectly on an album? Shouldn’t they be designing artwork to fit the mood of the record and the indivualty of those who make it? Yes, once you have ‘curated’ your album you can put it up for sale and receive comission but who is seriously going to buy it from a nobody? Is this taking novelty and interaction a step to far? Yes. If you purchase a new CD from HMV in the shops it is almost double the price that it is if you purchase the same CD from HMV online. This is due to companies like HMV, Amazon and Play run their online stores from tax-excemption countries so they save a lot of money. You can pay £7.99 for a CD, including delivery or £5 for the digital version where there are no postage costs or material. CD sales falling tend to be blamed on piracy but the use of a CD has become inadequate as you end up importing it onto your computer and iPod and then put it on your self and that is it. So, what would make sense is to put the price of the digital format down, but will that affect what the artist recieves? In theory, buying an mp3 is really buying the actual art produced by the musicians, really, the CD and the case are just the method on hearing the ‘art’. Sales of vinyls have been on the rise in recent times, they do cost a lot more than the other two formats but they are more expensive to make and you can’t just rip them on to your computer. They provide a diferent way to hear music. The way we hear and purchase music is changing, but it always has and always will.
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We caught up with a downbeat Alfie Jackson after their final gig, the singer spoke of the good, the bad and the future. Why did you choose to finish the band now? “It has become more a weight upon our shoulders and it is not about a positive evolving force moving forwards any more... it feels like we’re flogging a dead horse, after the label going bust and losing stuff in a fire and members leaving and being ripped off and not been recognised for our qualities, it just becomes something that brings you down when you know it should me much more than it is. I have energy to create music but I feel restricted and need to break free and write anything.”Is that the book closed for the band? “One never knows what the future holds.” The singer talks of regret and underachievement when looking back. “Good times were had but I am left far from satisfied so watch out.” He continues “I will be throwing myself into various projects with various people… as a writer, performer and a few surprises. I want to make a cartoon musical. Send animators my way.” No Smoke, No Mirrors was released in October 2009 despite a lot of the material existing long before then, when did you stop writing ‘Holloways’ songs? “I have always written songs since I was like 4 and I sang a song about a mushroom tree… I guess The Holloways did become a restriction on me as a writer with expectation upon me, that’s how it felt sometimes, I have a list of songs that exceeds 240 ideas and so many of them are not appropriate for what has become expected of The Holloways. Had we stuck together with Rob and Dave and things had gone for us, we could have got big enough to do whatever we wanted with no fear of losing anything we’d built up, even before the 2nd album recording commenced with Rob and Dave, I had many conflicting ideas about the songs and sound I wanted to create and now I am angry for not trusting my heart and my instinct, but now I can do that… I can be me in the songs and not fear anything as a writer… no offence to what The Holloways was. I loved it with all my heart but some sections of my heart are singing different songs, but we could’ve made more Holloways records every week, but there was no point… what would the point have been?” You must be one of the unluckiest bands around what with the fire at Nambucca, not just your spiritual home but the place that housed your equipment, which were lost in the blaze, two core members, Rob & Dave leaving, the troubles with the label or the lack of backing for the second record, which had the biggest effect?
“All of those things… Rob and Dave leaving mostly.” Was it hard to carry on without them? “Of course it was desperately so.” Ed and Mike replaced them, did that change the dynamic? “Not really, the sound changed, we all clicked really well, but we were climbing a mountain with no shoes on.” Looking back, what are your fondest memories? “Leeds Met Uni gig, Irish pub gig first time we went to Dublin, Manchester Academy 2, the first time I heard us on Radio 1, playing Glastonbury, the first time I saw our name in NME… and many more” After to the self-release of Generator, your label released it a further two times, how did that make you feel? “Pissed off. radio should have got on it first time and then the label wouldn’t have bent over and let us be exploited and we could’ve evolved much quicker and we would be a top band now, I have no doubt of that.” He continued discussing the profession. “It has a little, but we never recorded enough for my liking; we didn’t achieve 10% of the things I wanted to tackle musically, but we did some good stuff didn’t we?” You spent a lot of time touring, what bands did you enjoy being on the road with? “I loved all the people we toured with – musically Kid Harpoon was my favourite, and The Young Knives are fantastically quirky. Love them.” You have ridden the internet wave when it really began affecting the music industry, what are your thoughts on the relationship with music and the internet? “People steal music. That sucks. Music gets out there. That’s great.” And finally how do you want The Holloways to be remembered? “As a positive force that only ever wanted to make the world a better place and nothing else and it breaks my heart and messes my head up that some people seemed to hate us but hey many people loved us and we loved them and all we wanted to do was use music to make things better.” It was sad to see the end of a band who held a piece of my heart but Alfie’s enthusiasm as a musician could reach further a field and Rob is already making movements with his new band Hares whilst Bryn and Dave have took a step back from performing, instead they are putting bands are their own stages in Camden.
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Summer shake down
The Story Small boutique festivals are proving popular, offering something different for a lot less money, each year new ones pop, those that donâ€™t live up to exceptions fall away whilst those that keep punters happy grow and grow and drift into the corporate side. Inner-city festivals are also ever increasing, a big mix of bands then a proper bed to sleep in and recharge for the next day is more refreshing than camping in muddy fields, London's Camden Crawl and Brighton's Great Escape attract the bigger acts but Americaâ€™s SXSW is the one that creates the biggest buzz. Only a few years back there were very few American festivals, that is gradually changing, European festivals are also becoming more important and popular year-on-year.
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A lot has happened in the last ten years, The Strokes performed on the main stage at Reading & Leeds festival before they had released their debut, My Chemical Romance hadn't even formed and Muse were still virtually unknowns, this year the bands headline the said festival that has more than doubled in price. Not only are prices going up but so has the amount of festivals, each year the festival season grows, this time around starting in April, with so much on offer there is no time to be bored. This has been the first in years that Reading did not sell out immediately. Is this just a dip or a decline? Glastonbury has had some ups and downs over recent years, Jay-Z was the unlikely hero and this years line-up looks as diverse as ever.
amden Crawl kicked off 2011â€™s festival season on the May Day bank holiday. In-andround the North London borough a diverse line-up of over 250 live acts took to stages, om 90â€™s indie heroes The Lemonheads, the reinvented Razorlight and a host of up-andoming talent, there was something for everybody over the two days. The weather was as bright and cheery on day one as was the vibes inside The Hawley Arms who were showcasing some of their favourite bands. North London four-piece The Supernovas got the venue bouncing with their catchy tunes full of stories of real life. Following them, Gaolers Daughter equally brought excitement to the room with an energetic set. Current buzz band, Tribes took their fresh grunge inspired set to The Enterprise. The packed upstairs room was sweaty and jubilant as the set went on, the crowd got more into it. Former Rascal and Alex Turner collaborator Miles Kane owned the Kentish Town Forum stage as he performed material from his forthcoming debut album. The material had elements of sixties influences and the set took an emphatic closure with single, Inhaler. The View followed Miles with a headline set full of material from their latest record, Bread & Circuses whilst crowd surfing took place during the old favourites.
It wasn’t just music on offer over the weekend, the Comedy Crawl was also taking place. Rich Fulcher, better known as Bob Fossil from The Mighty Boosh took to stage at The Wheelbarrow and shouted his way over the lairy audience. Tribes closed the first day with a midnight set at the same venue. After a day of drinking, the crowd were lively from the start, compared to their earlier set as they were welcomed like heroes.
by a group so aggressive and dangerous, these won’t go quietly. Spending the majority of in-between song banter moaning about the security, they enticed the crowd to get involved. When the set came to an end the stage was full of audience members, mayhem broke out, a riot was close. This performance was just feeding the attention that the onlookers were craving, listen to the music and the talent deepens.
After a jam-packed Saturday, Sunday began steadily but the cobwebs were blown away by OFWGKTA on the Red Bull Outdoor Stage. Currently the most talked about new comers on the rap scene, the young American’s attracted an intrigued crowd who were wanting to see what the fuss was about. Just four of the twelve member collective arrived on-stage to screams. Led by the aggressive Tyler, The Creative hysteria broke out whilst they swore their way through a emphatic set as they ran about the stage, jumped into the crowd and climbed the speaker stacks, Hodgy Beats chose to leap down, rather than climb and lost teeth in the process. It has been a while since we have been treated
Gloomy upstarts, Chapman Family performed an intimate and intense set on the Rayban bus, the short outing saw the frontman pretend to strangle himself in-front of the fifteen spectators.The Hawley Arms had a much more chilled out atmosphere going on, despite the sun shining outdoors, everybod crammed inside to see former Babyshambles bassist Drew McConnel play with various bands, soul singer, Bridgette Amofah stole the show as she did a number of covers where her amazing voice shone. Little Comets squeezed into the tiny Annie’s Bar in Kentish Town with a chaotic performance while Pete & the Pirates played some new songs at the Purple Turtle.
The Great Escape
Brighton was the host of Europe’s biggest industry convention as well the best new bands about in mid-May. The Great Escape festival has become renowned as one of the more successful ‘inner-city’ types, the British equivalent to SXSW and draws an eager crowd of new music hunters each year. You Animals are an extremely underrated band, especially live. The Derby band kicked off with the thumping self-titled track followed by the lively Halfway to Heartbreak. The venue was busy and it didn’t take long before singer, Ryan got cosy with on-lookers as he wandered in and around them. Taking on songs from Crimes, Creeps & Thrills with a don’t care attitude that comes across as risky to some. Ryan spent a lot of the set away from the stage, hanging from the chandelier, hugging some audience members, serenading others and on final track, Shotgun Valentine he climbed the bar.
Next up was former Golden Silvers frontman, Gwilym Gold at the Prince Albert. The singer was just partnered with an impressive synthesiser creating an intimate atmosphere with quirky new songs. It was then to The Hope to capture the dynamic Paris Suit Yourself. The odd bunch create a sound full of varying influences which can be heard, unfortunately there were only a few times in the set where it worked, but the shambolic live set was intriguing. The Heartbreaks took their indie-pop sound to Hectors House with their Northern spirit. Full of Smith influences without coming across as copycats they had a freshness. British rapper, Devlin performed at the Corn Exchange entertaining a crowd willing to get involved with chart-bothering rap. . The Great Escape is best of the city festivals but it does suffer the same issues as the rest, too much time is wasted getting from one venue to the next and too many bands get missed whilst queuing up.
London Calling Taking place at the Paradiso, a decadent venue London Calling, a bi-annual festival in Amsterdam is known for booking future heroes, Foals, Klaxons, Franz Ferdinand, Snow Patrol and Blur have all graced the stages before hitting stardom.
On the first of the two-day festival the packed small room was treated to The Horrors’ frontman, Faris Rotter and opera singer Rachel Zeffira’s 60’s inspired group, Cat’s Eyes. The seven song strong set took material from their debut album whilst struggling through sound issues, neither vocals came across well but what you did hear was heartfelt and emotive. The group haven’t played many gigs, and this was fairly stripped back with only five on stage compared to the dozen or so on the earlier performances. They still managed to make a huge sound and one of the performances of the weekend. Ariel Pink were one of the surprise packages with a performance that pleased a lot of new listeners. Their energy moved from the stage, filling the huge space of the main room, creating a buzz in the top deck. The much talked about Foster The People made the walls of the small room sweat with their post-nu rave anthems before Scottish indie darlings The View got their hits out for a headlining set in the main room. Day two started a little earlier as Sheffield’s young upstarts The Crookes performed a short set on the balcony on the impressive Stadsschouwburg building in the afternoon sun. Opening with the finger clicking We Are Magicians the gig was relaxed and intimate before ending with an Adele cover. Music continued again in the evening with the disappointing 2.54 before Brighton boys Flashguns attacked the stage with their fast guitar anthems. Ra Ra Riot were the first to take on the main stage on the second day and owned it. The New Yorkers spent the performance swapping instruments with oneanother creating interesting sound, making use of strings and keys and a dominating front-man. The Crookes performance on the main stage was completely different to the one earlier in the day but just as enjoyable. Their melt-in-the-mouth indie pop gauged out melodies like a summertime version of The Smiths.
Primavera There is a formula that pretty much guarantees that a human will have fun, not knowing the exact formula it could be guessed that it goes something like this: Foreign Country + Sun + Alcohol + Music = FUN. Primavera Sound 2011 provided every one of these factors and true to the above formula was indeed fun. Large amounts of fun. The festival started as a very British farce, a bar system using swipe cards and i-pads was severely let down by the lack of i-pads at almost every bar meaning that queuing for the first few hours of the festival was a pretty intense affair, but was quickly sorted. The musical journey started with Seefeel, who while clearly being very proficient at what they did, were let down by a lack of atmosphere in the bright Spanish evening. Their brand of loopy, glitchy electronica was not totally lost on everyone and seemed to be hitting the right notes with some, but feels as it would have been infinitely better in a smaller (darker) venue. ThursdayĂs highlight was without a doubt The Flaming Lips. Having never seen them or witnessed their live show before, this was probably always going to be the case. Caribou should also get a mention for turning the ATP stage into a throbbing dancepit, a few key hits seemed to be left out, but it didnĂt matter in the slightest. Friday belonged to Pulp, in what was one of their first shows for what seems like a really unpleasant amount of time, they really managed to bring back the magic that made them special in the first place. Jarvis took to centre stage and reverted back to his monitor lingering, floppy wristed antics. Their set-list was a trip down memory lane, rattling through all their biggest joints as if they had never been away. Ariel Pink disappointed but Explosions in the Sky managed to tear everybody a new brain hole, in a good way and Battles somehow managed to shed a member and come back even better than they ever have been. They were ferocious, lively and tight. Belle and Sebastian seemed to be a bit lack-lustre and were honestly the biggest disappointment of the day, the crowd were very welcoming towards them but it felt like the Scots failed to connect.
So Saturday brought about Yuck. Where to start with Yuck eh... they were simply brilliant. With tracks like Get Away and The Wall blasted out with such perfection, it had all the energy and closeness of the record and more. Bravo. Also to add to the awesome pile are Fleet Foxes, they delivered their two albums of hits so breathtakingly well that it was hard to not get emotional as the sun was going down. Guitar wielding, ear-drum punishers, Mogwai brought the Llevant stage a wall of sound that would make Phil Spector wet himself, it is very hard to find fault in a band so constantly brilliant as Mogwai, the kings of post-rock showed why they are held so high in the minds of so many. More than honourable mentions go to: Darkstar, Warpaint, Male Bonding and Tallest Man on Earth. All in all Primavera Sound 2011 was a beautiful experience. Words and photo by Rosh Singh
Get Loaded In The Park Get Loaded In The Park has been running since 2004 in South London, changing each year to find the correct audience. Like its name-sake (taken from a Primal Scream song) it has mixed indie and dance music over time. After several years being held over the August Bank Holiday it took a break last year and returned in 2011 with an indie heavy line-up in June. An issue for all UK festivals is the weather but in June you expect it to generally be dry and sunny, which it had been until the weekend of the festival, headlined by Razorlight. The organisers announced that the one-day festival had sold out in the days leading up to the event but as the rain poured on the day it must have put a lot of attendees off as it felt sparse. The weather didn’t spoil the stella line-up for the day as Los Campesinos! got the crowds spirits up with their energetic performance on the main-stage before Patrick Wolf poured enthusiasm with his experimental pop tunes. Over in the Last.FM arena Beans On Toast played his entertaining campfire acoustic set to a packed crowd escaping the heavy rain and blustery wind. Twee duo Slow Club showcased material from their forthcoming album whilst fellow Yorkshire men, The Cribs stuck to their back catalogue for a greatest hits set. After a few years away Razorlight are back with a new line-up and a different sound. Despite arriving on-stage at half sevent a lot of the festival goers had already headed home due to the weather but that didn’t stop the band who mixed old with new. It is a huge shame that the weather ruins the festivals for us so often but that didn’t ruin the event for those who braved it.
Communion has come a long way over the past eighteen months. Starting off a few years back as a weekly night in West London, hosting the likes of Noah & The Whale and Laura Marling whilst playing a pivotal role in the formation of Mumford & Sons, which included one of Communionâ€™s key members, Ben Lovett. The weekly night branched off to other cities up-and-down the UK then last summer it took over the late-Flowerpot pub in North London for a week. Last year also saw the brand launch as a record label and have seen releases from Marcus Foster, Matthew & The Atlas and Pete Roe. It has become a well respected multi-purpose label pushing for natural progression rather than a quick cash-in. Earlier this year Communion announced its first one-day festival in four venues across Shepherds Bush. After a false start it finally took place on 4th June with great success, both attendance wise and the quality and caliber of those performing with the big attraction being Guillemots. Others in the line-up included the highlyregarded Goldheart Assembly and the much talked about Treetop Flyers. Like with other inner-city festivals you end up seeing a fraction of bands that you planned to, it is best to stick to one venue. After collecting our wristbands and a free beer at St Stephens Church we decided not go any further, the sun was shining creating a nice atmosphere in the church grounds but it was inside where real beauty could be found. I always enjoy a gig in a church, it always feels different and provids a great setting for the intimate performances. Like I said, it is hard to catch many bands, we saw two, but both surpassed expectations. King Charles was the first, all the pews were full as he took a stripped back approach that really worked well in the church. The intimatacy didn't stop the energy as he did a thirty minute set that was captivating to watch, it is hard to describe King Charles' music but visually it is easy. Dressed all in white with a beard and knee length dreads, youâ€™d be forgiven for not thinking he was the son of God. Australian singer, Sarah Blasko followed where her voice dominated the grand venue but the performance lacked something and felt a little awkward, luckily her songs are as strong as her voice so her talents shone. This was the first Bushstock, it proved to be a great showcase for new talent, I imagine there will be more of these annual events.
o t t o g e v â€™ e W t a Wh o T d r a w r o F k o o L Got your tent ready? Sleeping bag packed? Purchased your wellies for muddy fields? If yes, then you are probably off to one of the many festivals taking place over the summer. What ever music you like, where ever you live and how much money you have, there is something for everybody. This years ticket sales may have fallen slightly compared to previous yet the anticipation and excitement for Glastonbury is as high as ever despite the mediocre line-up, it sold out instantly. T In The Park and V Festival have upped their games, booking huge headliners including Eminem, Coldplay and Arctic Monkeys warrant their popularity. Whilst Reading has struggled to compete. Here is some festival that give a little more than corprate sponsors and lairy louts.
Tramlines Where: Throughout Sheffield When: 22nd - 24th July This is a free non-ticketed event in Sheffieldâ€™s city centre. With a couple of outdoor stages and pubs and venues staging live music you might capture the likes of The Futureheads, Ash or Los Campesinos! or un-earth something new and exciting. www.tramlines.org.uk Camp Bestival Where: Lulworth Castle, Dorset When: 28th - 31st July From the team behind the highly regarded Bestival this is a family friendly weekend that is just as much a playground for the adults as well as children. Amongst the face-painting, clowns and fair grounds is a line-up of eclectic music from Primal Scream, Laura Marling and Blondie. Tickets and Details: www.campbestival.net Lounge On The Farm Where: Merton Farm, Canterbury When: 8th - 10th July Once again Lounge On The Farm have captured a nice mixture of music to keep everybody pleased in the idyllic settings in the farm with The Streets, Ellie Goulding and Echo & The Bunnymen headlining. Tickets and Details: www.loungeonthefarm.co.uk Secret Garden Party Where: Mill Hill Fields, Cambridgeshire When: 21st - 24th July Fifteen small, handcrafted tent full of performances from the odd to the ridiculous, comedy to theatre, arts and music from Mystery Jets and Guillemots amongst many more. Tickets and Details: www.secretgardenparty.com End Of The Road Where: Larmer Tree Garden, Dorset When: 2nd - 4th September A mixture of arts and crafts, learn new skills and head to the comedy stage if you have time in-between a brilliant line-up including Beirut, Lykke Li, Best Coast and Caitlin Rose.
Tickets and Details: www.endoftheroadfestival.com
The Main Event: Glasto With only a few days to go, anticipation amongst the Glastonbury faithful is reaching fever pitch. Flashbacks of stone circle sun rises, life-affirming live shows and hours lost wandering from field to field in an elated daze are becoming increasingly vivid as the festival approaches. As anyone who has set foot on Worthy Farm will tell you, Glastonbury is the king of festivals. I am well aware of how irritating it must be for Glasto virgins when having to listen to those like myself bang on about the ìmagic auraî of the place but those same people have been repeating those sentiments as soon as stepping onto that famous Glastonbury mud. This will be my forth year at the festival and although it is perhaps not the most exciting line up I have ever seen, it is sure to be as special a weekend as ever on Worthy Farm. Firstly, as anyone who has been to Glastonbury will tell you, it is so much more than a music festival. Iíve lost count of the amount of times I have overheard people saying, ìI could not watch one band all weekend and it wouldnít matterî and I get what they mean. Many of my favourite Glastonbury memories are of lying down in the sun in the Green Fields with a pint of cider, eating some ridiculously overpriced falafel wrap and discussing ìhow life could be like this if we all pulled together manî, conveniently overlooking the probable outcome of us all ending up in psychiatric units within a week. However, it is pure escapism and although you will always find the crusty oldtimers whinging about ëthe good old daysí , for those five days I genuinely do not think there is a better, more
beautiful place on the planet. Ev be a good idea to lob Coldplay an
Secondly, I reckon it is actually With a few obvious exceptions, genuinely not be any blander if stages have thrown up some re going to be spending most of t Pyramid as possible.
Here are a few sets I am gettin
Warpaint ñ (Friday on P ark Stag ñ I have been in love with this b 2010 album The Fool is one of my years and the likes of Undertow for the most hypnotically beaut
Robyn ñ (Sunday on John Peel) ñ this is an odd one but I donít t on the planet that do pop as w immensely likable and there is a intelligence about everything s
TV On The Radio ñ (Sunday on t their recent album isnít quite t for still think they are one of th thinking bands on the planet. An the likes of Staring At The Sun, Home must be missing a screw
ven if Eavis did decide itíd nd U2 on the same bill.
Beyonce ñ (Sunday on the Pyramid Stage) ñ Anyone who isnít excited about the prospect of Crazy in Love on the a deceptively strong line up. Pyramid stage in front of 70,000 people needs to lighten , the Pyramid Stage could up. I have never seen a pop ësuperstarí live before and it tried. However, the other they donít get much bigger than Beyonce. All the glamour , eally exciting bills and I am the light-shows and energy will be the perfect antidote to the festival as far from the the two previous headliners. You can put your money on there being some pretty special guests too.
ng excited aboutÖ
Special Guests - (Friday and Saturday on Park Stage)Emily Eavis has dropped some pretty exciting hints about ge, Saturday on John Peel) the special guests on the Park Stage. An act of ëheadliner band for a while now. Their potentialí has been promised for the Saturday, sparking y favourite albums of recent rumours ranging from Pulp to Arctic Monkeys. I was w and Baby are sure to make praying for a Pulp headline slot, so to see them on the Park tiful sets of the weekend. stage would be beyond belief. Still, Glastonbury rumours rarely materialize. Bon Iverís second album is released this ñ Some of you might think week and his Park Stage slot in 2009 was widely seen as a think there are many people highlight of the festival, could a return as Fridayís special well as this lady. She is guest could be on the cards? real sincerity and she does. Either way, Shayne Ward and The Darkness could play three hour special guest slots in the torential rain and it still the Other Stage) ñ Although wouldnít get in the way of the best weekend of the year. the masterpiece I was hoping he most exciting, forward Words by George Wright nyone not there to witness , Wolf Like Me and Halfway or two.
r uneart e n r a W y a s d Lyn
cottish f S d e k o lo r e v best of the o
Music Festival s t h ig L rn e h rt o N Where? Aberdeen Sunday 31stJuly ñ ly u J h t 0 3 y a d international e sh li When? Saturd b a st e h t o b ival attracting st fe c si nd event of its u e m k e w e e w n d st n e g ra b ig b ís e d is Scotlan d is set to be th n a y t ci e h Northern Lights t o t me grown talent o h l ca lo d n a s ct a this summer. st a E h rt o N e h t s a strong lu p s e kind in t t e is o N e h , Madness and T rk a P tes The Xcer o ri im u x o a v M fa s, n d e a e e h rd e re b u e Kelis, Fut d Jetpacks and A e is m ro of Mylo, Kissy P s e re k e Headliners includ li W e e h t W , m d o il fr w s le with Id l also see DJ set il w a n re a Scottish presence ce n a d 3 stages. The performing over mple. on, has the D r e Sell Out and Exa iv R e h t f o s ark on the bank P n o t a and the beac e S re l t u n if ce t u y a t e ci b e e h h t t h ppening in l) away from bot w a cr r (o The festival, ha lk a w ing only a short e b f o w ra d d e d d a sfestival.co.uk t h g li rn e h rt o .n w it: ww For more info vis
Wizard Festival Where? Turriff, Aberdeenshire When? Friday 26thñ Saturday 27thAugust 2011
Another family-friendly 2 day festival with a str its 5th summer. The Stranglers headline Friday an also perform. More of a giant bank holiday family fun-fare, th whilst The Wee Wizards Arena offers a full 2 day For more info visit: www.wizardfestival.com
Belladrum Tartan Heart Festival Where? Inverne ss When? Friday 5th ñ Saturday 6thA ugust. Belladrum, otherw ise known as the Tartan Heart Fe Inverness-shire stival is staged with over 90 act in Beauly, s are confirmed headlinng the Fri so far with Texa day evening and s and Deacon Blu Glasgow favouri will also see set e t e s Kassidy on Saturd s from Frank Turn a e y r, . 5 U nicorn Kid, Guille River and more. stages mots, Little Com ets, Dry The The line-up take s in everything fr om pop-rock to performing arts Celtic and Ceilidh ranging from stre bands as well as e t t heatre to comed part in workshop y plus opportunit s and tuition. N ow in itís 8th ye ies to take with its typically ar, hosted by the beautiful Highlan Belladrum Estat ds backdrop, the with plenty of e e festival is very ntertainment fo fa m r il children. A catwa y friendly dress plus a trad lk and prizes fo itional Scottish r the best fancy Ceilidh kicks thin For more details gs off on the Th head to: www.ta ursday evening. rtanheartfestiva l.co.uk
rong local following, Wizard returns to New Deer Showground in Turriff Aberdeenshire for nd Cast appear on Saturday as part of their 15th anniversary tour plus The Saw Doctors
he Wizard site will host a fairground, shopping arena and various creative workshops y programme of events to occupy children, in addition to 4 stages of music.
English Blood lease of the re e th h g u ro n th ore ining attentio a g d e lbum had a m rt a ta s rs t a e rs y fi t s d n la a , 07 The b ard March! 20 rw o F , ral move? P E tu a k n c a a is th s a eight-tr d, w omplete soun c d n a t a e b p u t time we had a th In s. se a le o re ge. between the tw rs a e y 3 a line-up chan re d e a w h d re n e a th n , ll io e “W uch haust t it wasn’t so m ourselves to ex u b d c, re u si u to , m p u te n ri ou w grow DYHA and he r ange the way y fo ch n ll e a ll s A g e in v a th ith D These also worked w e W . g in th d e a plann d our sound.” ce n e u fl in y ll a re s were born. g n o s e th n e wh on to discuss s e o g r e g in s The nd the other a it d e rd co re s we . efore 18 month b t u o t into the studio b n a e d w n e u w ro a re re fo e e b eks “Half w d it onistic few we d e h a here I lived an in w te p ro o w sh e e w th lf in a h offer sh beer was on li . o P d n u fo e W lucid mood…” l a ci e sp t a th us in m seemed to put record as Ada d n o c e s a r fo al ng new materi ti ri w re a d n a The b explains.
Drown Your Heart Again by Portsmouth collective, The Strange Death of Liberal England was one of Abolish Confusions favourite records of 2010. Once or twice they have been described as Britainâ€™s answer to Arcade Fire but somehow they have been overlooked by most. We caught up with front-man, Adam Woolway to discuss the future plans of the band as he tells tales of touring, the gloomy state of the music industry and what happened when he met Win Butlerâ€Ś
Photos by: http://www.visualcomment.co.uk/
“We are all song writers. I don’t think we ever really stop but nothing is ready to be played out yet. Me and Will have Soundcloud accounts and we keep putting demos up there as a way of stopping us forgetting about them so watch these spaces. (soundcloud.com/adam-woolway).” But it is money issues that are delaying the recording. “We’ll probably have to beg for more studio time first though, unless I can find my old tape cassette four-track.” There is lack of money amongst a lot of musicians which Adam believes to be down to a few factors, especially in the UK. “So many labels have gone under (including Fantastic Plastic who we were signed to), the crowds are getting less and you’re better off spending your money on recording a 3 minute video for YouTube than you are paying for the petrol and hotels to tour. The UK music scene is dead, it sucks and no one cares. Somehow there is still a passion for discovering music in Europe but here it’s all too easy and the market is saturated, why bother going to a gig when you can get everything you want for free sitting in your pants at home?” The singer is divided on the internet v music battle. “Well, contrary to my above answer, the internet is great for music. The music industry needed a reform and this, to a certain extent, really gives the musicians and bands power. It is so democratic and you can really get your music out to people. But, as with all things that wield so much revolutionary power it needs to be used in a way that makes the end user aware of what the consequences of their actions are. I’m obviously talking about piracy here and this is the ugly side of the internet. I know so many bands who have quit simply because they can’t afford to carry on and I’m sure we will too, one day. We have never made any money from music and yet thousands of people have the music which we created and which we paid to create. It’s not even as if our costs have been covered and yet supposed fans of music are still uploading your album to torrent sites. And what really gets me is when people say that it doesn’t matter as they come to the shows instead. Really? I can’t remember the last time we played a UK gig outside of London where there was a good turnout. And even if there was, that’s the promoter you’re giving money to, not the band. Thanks” “ If someone can think of a way for musicians to make money from their art (and I’m talking gas bills and food on the table here, not lines of coke and pent houses in LA) then I wouldn’t care about piracy, it’d be a good thing even, but until then I can’t understand how people can do it.” Despite this negativity it is performing live that makes the band happy, a recent highlight. “Boston Arms last month was the reason we formed a band. A room full of people coming together, drinking and going wild.” This summer the band are avoiding the festivals, they prefer playing gigs a lot more. “A good gig with a good crowd can never be beat. With festivals you’re always playing to half a crowd, the rest are just waiting for the next band and content with drinking £5 pints.” One of few highlights for the band at festivals took places a couple of years back but it took a surprising twist. “We did Latitude and that was amazing. I met Win Butler and asked him for a photograph. He told me to fuck off. That’ll be a tale for the grandchildren.”
The release of record has seen more interaction with audience at the gigs. “More people sing along. There are actual words on this album. It can actually be a bit off-putting live.” The band are happy on the road if they are given food and drink and get inspiration from travelling. “It helps. It reminds you why you are doing it and gives you something else to think about, new scenery and new reasons to write songs.” Having travelled around the world their favourite venue is “La Botanique in Brussels. An amazing ampitheatre with gret natural sound. Brixton Accademy had it’s moments though.” Visit the bands website to see what they are upto.
Abolish Confusion Recommends
Communion has become a â€˜jack-of-all-tradesâ€™ business over recent months. From a weekly night in West London to one travelling event through the UK and a one-day festival. Not only that but a record label too. Having released music from Marcus Foster, Treetop Flyers and Ben Howard they have become a good source for new music. Visit their website www.communionmusic.co.uk
Patrick Wolf Itâ€™s been almost ten years since London experimentalist Patrick Wolf released his first E.P. Fsith & Industry. He has packed a lot in since then, June sees the release of Lupercalia, the singers most complete work to date. Now on his fifth album Patrick has grown album-onalbum with a natural progression and a change in direction. Lupercalia starts off strong with some of his most radio-friendly material yet, which is no bad thing. The City and House are uplifting, catchy and get toes tapping with an infectious meldody and a joyous beat, the songs might be cliche pop songs of love and lust but hidden beneath is triumph over many hurdles. We are then introduced to Bermondsey Street, a modern love story of modern-day culture. The production is as instant as the tune whilst The Future is on honest view from Patrickâ€™s private life since the release of the last album, The Bachelor. It begins delicately with Patrick backed by a female vocalist but builds up with a huge sound with brass and string coming in from all directions producing an explosion of beauty. Lyrically, this is as sincere they come on an album that Patrick can finally write about what he has, no what he is craving. Time Of My Life was the first song from the album to be released back in December and it has not worn thin, a reinvention of the common pop song at its best The Days is full of strings and strong vocals shine through honest as Patrick makes peace with his past to help deal with present. Although everything about the song is downbeat you are left feeling hopeful, then Slow Motion kicks in, a song that tells of the desperate situation that he was in before meeting William which brought him back to life, this might be the singers best achievement so far. The story begins to conclude with Together which has the electrobeats that Alec Empire introduced Patrick to on the last album but these are moments of aspiration rather than war as the song is full of a future, a happy one. The record closes with what it had been building up to, one most upbeat songs yet, The Falcons which will bring a smile to anybodies face with a bouncy beat and a story contentment. And that is what the albums story tells. Each of the five albums that Wolf has released have seen huge changes but still recognisable, who knows what direction he will take next so make the most of the happiness of this perfect summer record. You can order the record from all the usual places and Patrick will be touring for most of the year, dates can be found here.
A Weekend In The City
New York has always been on with America, its vastness, cu captivating, its youth as a soc is inspiring. After a long-tim with a visit over Easter week ing the cities centre, Manhat wrong, but in no a bad way.
The iconic city is forever in the spotlight, whether watching re-runs of Friends, listening to early punk bands such as The Ramones, the garage sounds of The Velvet Underground, East Coast rapper Jay-Z, the noughties garage revival with The Strokes and pop extremist Lady GaGa. It isn’t just in the lyrics that the city is celebrated, it essentially created ‘punk’ as well as counting folk frontier Bob Dylan and pop art pioneer Andy Warhol as residents over the years, it also saw the death of John Lennon and Sid Vicious. The city is steeped in culture, whether that is music, art or fashion that capture your attention you will find it in unexpected places making a walk around full of surprises. Whilst London brags about its rich cultural history and Paris keeps it untouchable to most, the American counter-path makes the tourist do the searching for themselves, giving them there own unique experience.
The ‘city that never sleeps’ seemed to be napping through th weekend is one where New Yorkers escape the hectic city lif what it felt like. The image of the jam-packed high-ways and changed for empty and quiet streets whilst the pavements p tle found in other major cities was only replicated in the bri about with cameras whilst being sold tat from men on the si be found on walls across the globe, it became the only part o joying the slow pace of Soho and The Village much more. Th out a taste of the ‘real’ New York, it was minuet in compariso and iconic music venues are full of individuals that you exce icons. Head down Bowery and you will find the remains of t John Varsototas store, around the corner is Trash & Vaudvill likes of Iggy Pop and Johnny Thunders in their hey day.
n my hit-list, i have a fascination ulture and power is so unique and ciety so naive and pace of growth me of wanting, my craving was filled kend, five days of non-stop explorttan proved my expectations to be
he majority of my visit, traditionally the Easter fe for a bank holiday break and that is exactly d honking from the iconic yellow cabs was exproved just as ghostly at times. The hustle and busight lights of Time Square where tourists dawdled ide-streets. Although the Time Square image can of the city i would happily never return to, enhese areas, although attracting tourists hunting on. The cobbled streets, boutiques, coffee shops ept to see from a city that has produced so many the punk days with the walls of CBGBâ€™s now up in le, a clothes shop that became a hang-out for the
here they were w rs e b m e m Everybody re crashed into s e n la p o tw s on 9/11 when ting building a in m o d t s o m Manhattanâ€™s ing is famed d il u B te ta S ire on and the Emp nkey hanging o m ig b a g n t for featuri lockbuster, bu b d o o w y ll o s, the top in H ous landmark m fa r e th o s a these, as well of tourist w o fl t n ta s n o c that attract a erwhelmed. d n u le tt li a g lin leave you fee these attracto in t u p rt o eff om There is little eading away fr h ff o t s e b is tions so it hatton. Obvin a M lâ€™ a e â€˜r it there and vis time in the r e g n lo a e v a ously, if you h to one of the t u o r e h rt fu it city take a vis ow a thrivn , n ly k o ro B as suburbs such wn. ing part of to
from minute walk ty n e tw a t s u J u are in the o y d n a re a u Times Sq e biggest in th , n w o T a in little heart of Ch en you reach th d n a , d rl o hethe w g into the bo in tt e g re fo e e. Italy b enwich Villag re G f o re u lt mian cu out that the is d te in o p t n e One resid verybody has e t a th e rs e iv me land is so d t vibe does co a th d n a , n o t an to ge t friendlier th lo a is it , h g throu ities. other major c
Abolish Confusion Recommends
All The Rage When I first had thoughts about this ĂŤmagazineĂ You Animals were the ones who immediately came to mind as cover stars. I have been a big fan of this Derby group for some years now and was always surprised that they kept getting over looked. Their live shows are energetic and their songs are captivating, after 5 years we are now treated to debut album, Crimes, Creeps & Thrills. 12 songs of heartfelt guitar pop, better than most recent similarities yet still seemed to get ignored. We had a chat with the band on their plans.
Yea of th a lo them all a unti that The to w all j was just
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The of o man of d busi song thou song we t grea
It w of th met star cloc
e album has been a long time in the king, are you glad to have it out?
ah it has taken a while. We’ve had a lot he songs recorded in various versions for ong time but we just weren’t happy with m for one reason or another. We were agreed that the album wouldn’t come out il it sounded how we wanted it too and t’s probably what took the time really. e day when we all sat round and listened what was the final mix was fantastic, we just knew that it was done and that this s going to be what would be released. It t clicked. It was a great feeling.
ere is a good mix of new and old ngs, was it a tough choice? Did you ve a lot of new songs to work with?
e album was always going to be a mix older and newer stuff because we had so ny songs that never really saw the light day and it felt a bit like unfinished iness with them. We tried not to split the gs depending on when they were written ugh. We just knew we had X number of gs in the pot and chose the ones which thought were the best and would make a at album.
u worked eith Mansun’s Paul Draper the album, how did that come about?
was brilliant to work with Paul. He is one he most interesting people I have ever t. He is a perfectionist but doesn’t like to rt work until 2 in the morning. Our body cks were destroyed.
Stuart and me listened to nothing but Mansun for a good few years in our teens, it was verging on obsession if I’m being totally honest. So when Ryan told us he’d just been on the phone to Paul Draper and he wanted to do some recording with us I freaked out a bit! Ha. He got in touch with us after we told Steve Lamacq that we were massive Mansun fans and he passed on our details. Paul produced a couple of tracks with us at Parr Street in Liverpool and at his studio near London but the majority of the album was recorded at Snug Recording Co in Derby by our friends Robbie and Rich. Do you find it hard to keep songs like Communicate fresh? When You Animals started and Matt and Liza joined, there was a short period of time where the older songs were still new to them so they could be more objective than the rest of us who knew the songs inside out. We played the songs together and listened to Matt & Liza’s opinions of what needed changing. Why did you choose to sign with This Is Fake DIY? We always planned on signing to an indie so that things could grow naturally. We’d been offered major label deals in the past and I know that if we had taken them up we’d have split up and never released an album. When we met the people from TFDIY it was a unanimous decision that we wanted to work with them. They are lovely genuine people and have all the same goals as us. It was just a great fit. Has the line-up changes effected the dynamic of the band? Yes but it’s only for the better. Before Matt and Liza came along things had gotten a little stale and we needed to shake things up.
Are you attending any as a fan? Who are
Really want to catch Pulp as they’re a mass I’d like to see The Horrors for geeky guitar What is your favourite festival to play?
We’ve done The Great Escape 3 or 4 times a think being close to the sea brings the best o Any moments that stand out?
Supporting Idlewild was pretty special. Th Festivals or gigs? What inspires your music?
Tough one! Festivals. If you’re going to a fe got the weekend off work. It’s worth puttin acoustic guitars and bongos late into the nig
Every time I hear a chord change in someone else’s song that takes me by surprise I want to go and write something What are your favourite festivals to atten better. Despite the time length of when songs were written, the theme seems to stick on the album, was that deliberate? Absolutely. We were very conscious of making a coherent selection of songs rather than just sticking down whatever were the last batch of tracks we had written. We were aware that some of the songs were quite stylistically different to the others so we used the segues in-between tracks to help them gel together. Are you looking forward to the festival season? Yep! We did Great Escape last month in Brighton which was loads of fun (despite leaving half of our gear in the van which was half an hours walk from the venue). And we’re playing Y-Not festival in August which is looking really good too. We’re also pencilled in for a couple more but we’re still waiting to be confirmed for them.
I’ve always had a great time at Leeds and a Great Escape. They’ve both just got a friend Well apart from that time the campsite got d Do you enjoy touring?
I love playing gigs with my five best friends. laughing and seeing new places. Travelling with a hangover is not so great. It’s wrong like that though because it’s a massive privi what we do.
The live gigs are always energetic, do yo crowd or do you inflict it on to them?
Ha ha. Inflict!? I like that. I think it works can’t expect a crowd of people who may nev before to get excited about it if you aren’t ex like a prat but it’s symbiotic I guess.
e you excited to see?
sive influence on us. And reasons.
and always had a blast. I out in people.
hey were bloody lovely too.
Have you noticed the audience’s change since the release of the album? It’s always great when people know the words and structures etc and since the release people have had the chance to get to know the songs a bit more so there’s more singing along. What is your favourite city/venue to play? I always like the more obscure ones. We once played in the basement of a hotel in Southend which was like a cave, the gig was mental. There’s also a place in the Lake District where they have wild parrots flying around (I’m not kidding) and we played a gig on the cricket green. It was pretty surreal! Does touring help or hinder song writing?
estival then it means you’ve With there being quite a few of us in the band it can be difficult to write ng up with people playing on tour. We try to start things off in our rehearsal room play around with ght for that! them in soundcheck. nd? Who are you currently listening to? as I said before at The Last played on my iPhone is Manic Street Preachers’ The Holy Bible. The dly, relaxed atmosphere. last album I bought was The Kills’ Blood Pressures. destroyed at Leeds. How do you think the music industry have changed since you formed?
s. We’re constantly I don’t have enough time to answer that fully but the music industry today around in a small van is unrecognisable to what it was even 3 years ago. No one buys music to complain about stuff ilege to get the chance to do anymore and there’s hardly anyone taking risks on new bands so it’s extremely difficult to get a foothold. At the same time though you can now produce a perfectly acceptable track at home using a basic PC and it’s never been easier to get your music ‘out there’. There’s still a long way ou get that from the to go but I genuinely think that this change will weed out anyone who is making music for the wrong reasons. Look at us, we’re all skint but we’re not about to give it up! s both ways really. You ver have heard your music xcited by it. Not to sound
Crimes, Creeps & Thrills is out now and the band are set to headline Camden Barfly on 7th July. More details available on their website.
Art Attack! Album artwork has always been integral to the overall experience of music fandom, from cut and paste punk to prog rock's fantasy vistas, but as MP3 players and music downloads become the most common way to experience music you could expect it to fall by the wayside. However, whilst downloads continue to dominate music sales vinyl records have seen a resurgence, and although they still only account for around 1% of total music sales any kind of growth in an industry which is seeing a decline year on year is not insignificant.
Dead, some of which featured Carson Ellis' music meets illustration meets retro photo can afford or would want to pay over $100 Decemberists inspire devotion in a fanbase aspect of buying and collecting music.
The physical and collectable aspects of mus Creek's special editions, from album downloa deluxe packages containing t-shirts, posters This resurgence can be attributed to several factors, including the increased of newly released albums. The label, based popularity of indie music, which traditionally places importance on the experience is home to Bright Eyes, Azure Ray and Curs of buying, playing and collecting records and a sense of nostalgia for a others, and has a strong emphasis on indep pre-iTunes music industry. minded, music lead ways of doing business. within this supportive atmosphere, along w The benefits of vinyl records go beyond sound quality and collectability to the devoted fanbase, gives musicians and artist increased opportunities for beautiful, innovative and entertaining artwork. Bands opportunity to take risks with artwork th and record labels have taken advantage of these opportunities to emphasise not be possible with larger labels. artwork and offer special editions of albums with added extras. Offering albums as part of packages, with Portland band The Decemberists have always placed emphasis on strong, from t-shirts and posters to more idiosyn integrated visuals and have, from their first recordings, had their own artitems provides incentives for buying directl ist in residence, illustrator Carson Ellis. Ellis' illustrations are uncanny, absorbing the label, as well as providing extra contex and beautiful and compliment The Decemberists' baroque, literate and sometimes music beyond artwork. Azure Ray's 2010 alb downright frightening music perfectly. Consider the cover for 2003's Her Down the Moon was available as part of a Majesty The Decemberists', a sprawling evocation of the trenches of the First including a friendship bracelet and a devotio World War, illustrating The Soldiering Life, or the twisted typographic trees meditative and aspects within the album, a adorning The Hazards of Love, a whole album set within an enchanted forest. Land of Talk's Cloak and Cipher contained a However, their 2011 release The King is Dead raised the bar and was offered in Elizabeth Powell from the band. a variety of special edition packages, including a Deluxe Box edition containing Bright Eyes, probably Saddle Creeks most w vinyl and CD copies of the album, digital download, DVD, book, illustrated print and, work and the way it relates to the music perhaps most interesting, a limited edition one of a kind Polaroid photo taken the covers are designed by Zack Nipper, an by photographer Autumn De Wilde. In association with The Impossible Project, each cover reflects the content and style who have taken on production of instant film in the wake of Polaroid's demise, and political I'm Wide Awake It's Morning a De Wilde produced 2,500 photographs documenting the recording of The King is Ash in a Digital Urn, released on the same d
illustrations, in a perfect storm of yet totally appropriate art work. ography.. Obviously not all music fans 0 on their favourite band, but The 2007's Cassadaga featured more ambitious artwork, with the whole cover taken who place importance on the physical over by a lenticular optical illusion which revealed images and hidden phrases out of static when the included Spectral Decoder was drawn over the cover. Drawing on the mystical themes within the music the album won the Grammy sic can also be indulged with Saddle for Best Packaging in 2008, and cemented Bright Eyes' commitment to high ads complete with PDF artwork to quality artwork and packaging. Fans of printing techniques may also like to note s and more, the use of spot-varnishing on Digital Ash in a Digital in Omaha, Urn and rarities collection Noise Floor, and foiling on sive, among Fevers and Mirrors and 2011's The People's Key. pendentlyWorking These are only a very small indication of a larger with a trend for high concept artwork, Lady Gaga wouldn't ts the be the biggest pop star in the world without her hat may music videos, meat dresses and egg-carriages. While greater risks can be taken by bands and artists with smaller, more devoted fanbases this emphasis extras on artwork, costumes and live performance indicates ncratic the experiential aspects of music still matter to ly from people, even as downloading increases. xt for the bum Drawing It should also be mentioned that downloading and a package listening to music online do not signal the end of onal candle emphasising the visual creativity within music, as advances in music software indicate greater and the I Want It All package for collaboration between music, art and technology to create new ways in which notebook handmade and signed by art can interact with and enrich music. Arcade Fire's use of various technologies and artworks could fill an article in themselves, but the use of web links within well known band, have developed art- The Suburbs iTunes artwork specifically indicate the way in which the electronic c over 13 years making music. Many of future of music could provide even greater opportunities for album artwork. nd while there is no over arching style, of the music. Take for example folky Words and Image by Kate Dunstone and electronic and unsettling Digital day in 2005, featuring vastly different
Abolish Confusion Introducing Each month we will dig up the best up-and-coming bands who we believe to be genuinely brilliant and deserve attention. We will try our hardest to be discover talent from all areas of the music world. All we ask in return is that you trust our judgement and support new music.
Tribes Buzz bands come and go, some live upto the ‘hype’, other fubble and fall. Camden quartet Tribes have thrived on the press snippets and grown into future heroes of rock with their grunge influences and grotty indie appeal. With a compelling E.P., We Were Children, showcasing this, there is no reason not to believe what you read. The E.P. is a mixture of catchy grunge inspired pop and heartfelt anthems. The title tracks has the jubilent vibes of Time For Heroes and the celebratary feel of Smells Like Teen Spirit. It is an anthem for a generation in the mist of change and hope, Girlfriend is another guitar driven tune with a fresh sound and a story of normality and growing up. The lo-fi, 90’s sound is definitely big at the moment but few pull it off like these North Londoner’s. Before the E.P. comes to an end with an acoustic version of the title track we are treated to the intimate sound of Coming Of Age, another song relating to ‘our’ times and shows off the song-writing quality. Whilst waiting for their debut album you can catch them live this summer, details are here. You can read our thoughts on their triumphant gig in Camden recently here. The video for are We Were Children is worth a watch too.
The name might sound unfamilar but Neil Cousin is set to release his third record later this year. A singer-song writer who is backed by others for the first time on the forthcoming release, Bonfire, recorded in the idylic settings of Grange Farm Studios. It is hard to describe the singer-songwriter, it would be lazy to tag him as a â€˜folkâ€™ singer, make your own mind up here in this video or visit his website for more info.
Hey Sholay Yorkshire five piece Hey Sholay are growing at rapid speed. since forming two years back. After building up a local fanbase thanks to high-profile support slots they have stuck by their D.I.Y. ethos, releasing cassettes and filming their own videos. This is far from novelty from the five creative individuals who put as much effort into the package as the music. The band have a fantastic adventure on the horizonon visit their facebook page for details, you can watch the video for the forthcoming single here. The band recently won NMEâ€™s competition to play the EXIT Festival.in Serbia, they have a number of gigs booked in too.
The History Of Apple Pie East London quintet The History Of Apple Pie were just a two-piece less than twelve months back. Thanks to a Gumtree advert Jerome and Stephanie found three like-minded enthusiasts to play their â€˜90â€™s influenced dream pop songs. With a mix of Pavement, Sonic Youth and a hint of Brit pop they fit into the current sound that is evolving in East London. For full details on their latest movements check out their MySpace.
The Explorers are a fresh-faced duo from the North making music with computers. Summing up their music is like a list of ingredients for a vintage dessert. Blend nostalgic retro synth & guitar led songs with a hint at modern physcadelica mixing with poppy vocals and strong beats. The result can be heard here.
Abolish Confusion Recommends
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Search & Destroy As the mid-70ís arrived, more and more New Yorkers were wearing leather jackets, sporting bowl cuts and make-up. Round the corner from CBGBís was St. Marks Place, a road of clothes shops and cafes, becoming the place to hang out for the bohiemians, punks and art-schoolers. Trash and Vaudeville opened in 1975 to fill the desires of the young punks. Not only providing clothes but a place to meet other odd-balls, away from the mainstream side of Manhattan. 36 years later and the shop is still an essential part of rock ëní roll, not just the history, selling similar clothes and attracting a similar clientele. The staff dress like those mixing with the likes of Iggy and Johnny Thunders and provide great help if you need it, whilst trailing through the rails of different jeans, the majority sauced locally. It doesnít matter where in the world you are, ëvintageí shops tend to stock fairly similar items, when you find one that offers more you canít complain. With Vivienne Westwoodís shop, SEX, the clothes were not cheap, pricing out a lot of customers whilst Trash and Vaudville is affordable for most. It isnít just a shop to cloth the decadent locals though, the likes of Bowie and Jagger have stumbled across the shop over the years and count, Jimmy Webb, the face of the store as a friend. Jimmy is the perfect rock ëní roll icon, with a look of Iggy and unique clothes tailored just for him, he was made for the stage he never graced. It doesnít matter if you are a rock star or a tourist, you will be greeted in the same helpful way. People talk about CBGBís and the 100 Club as punk landmarks but it is this shop tucked away that has the richest history. www.trashandvaudeville.com
Some People Know How To Live Each month we will post ridiculous things that we find on the internet. Rosh took the plunge to start things off... Volume 1 - How to Tie a Tie “Do You Still Get That Frustrated Feeling Every time You Try to Tie a Tie?” Do you dread having to even wear a tie?” Don’t worry, you’re not alone. Millions of men are in the same boat. We do whatever we can to try and avoid situations where we have to wear a tie; but there always seems to a special occasion, job promotion or job interview where we know that “looks count.” The bottom line is that “Dressing for success” means learning how to tie a tie. But it’s not easy to ask for help. Just ask any man who’s been there and he’ll tell you that asking someone to teach them how to “tie a tie” can really make you feel like “less of a man”. It’s truly an emasculating experience for most men. But we’re here to change all that because we’ve put together a variety of helpful step-by-step “How to tie a tie” instructions that will help you learn the basics of the five most common necktie knot styles. Both our “How to tie a tie” print and video instructions cover these necktie knots: 1.The Four In Hand 2.The Half-Windsor 3.THe Full Windsor 4.The Pratt (sometimes called the shelby) 5.and the Bow Tie.”
I didn't get Lady GaGa for quite some iime, I'm still not that bothered about the first album, but the singles released from the Fame Monster really caught my attention. She has been on a constant promotional journey, always on tour since she first arrived, always in the spotlight but we know little about her. Little is given away, you rarely hear tales or see her papped unintentional and every interviewer asks the same questions and receive the same rehearsed replies. It took me a few listens of Born This Way, her come back single to understand the fuss. It had been a huge six month campaign running up to her second full-length album, also titled Born This Way where we were constantly fed stats on how popular she is, without her actually doing much. The album is an odd one, mixed with pop brilliance and cheesy lyrics. The singer expresses her individualism constantly, but she is nothing more than a character, a product. Everyone interview she chats about her love for her fans and how she cries when she doesn't have time to speak to them, we've been told how many million followers she has on Twitter, it would be impossible for her to see everyone. there are probably a few weirdos out there too. The New Yorker always claims to write her songs for her fans, surely if she doesn't care for others then she should be writing for herself? She also goes on, celebrating how she is happy to be who she is, whilst wearing a wig, costumes and coated in make-up. Her performance of Hair on the Paul O'Grady show recently was done with her hair hidden, which just felt a little too far. Lyrically, the song is cringeworthy but it is a good pop song. She is trying so hard to be 'real' that it is becoming fake, one day it will catch her out. I've watched several interviews with her from her recent UK visit, they were almost exactly the same, two even used the same 'novel' concept of asking her 'little monsters' (the fans) to send their own questions in. Her response often began with 'So cute', sounding patronising, clearly her fans who range from children to adults are loyal an obsessive, i'm just ensure if they know what they are buying into. I do like her, it is just becoming a little ridiculous.
ABOLISH CONFUSION PRESENTS Abolish Confusion Presents launched in May at the Bull & Gate in North London. This will become a regular event hosting our favourite new bands. You will hear of them first on the pages of the magazine then come and watch them live. The opening night was a great success thanks to Lion Tops, Raquels, Safari and the headliners, Boy Mandeville. All four bands showed great promise, keep your eyes peeled.
Thanks to Everybody who contr ibuted: Kate Dunstone, Rosh Singh, Lyndsay War ner , Jimmy Pinder , George Wr ight and Sally Dunstone. Also: You An imals, The Holloways, The Strange Death Of Liberal England and everybody else who had input in cr eating this first issue. We hope ther e will be many mor e to come...
Music monthly focussing on the best new bands