31 THE WALKMEN METRONOMY
FUJIYA & MIYAGI SPINTO BAND BILL DRUMMOND HERCULES & LOVE AFFAIR
CUT COPY MERCY ARMS RUN TOTO RUN
ISSUE THIRTYONE OCT/NOV
features Introducing… Mercy Arms & Run ToTo Run SIX Spinto Band SEVEN Cut Copy EIGHT Hercules & Love Affair NINE Metronomy TEN Fujiya & Miyagi ELEVEN The Walkmen TWELVE Bill Drummond TWENTYTWO
This issue is brought to you in amazing mono colour and in association with letters in Arial and the number 31. I Would just like to say a massive thanks to Adam Farmer for taking on design duties for the last issue and doing a great job of it! HIGHVOLTAGE NEEDS YOU!! Are you a budding writer? Itching to flex your vocab muscle? Pent up with a flow of words with no where to flow them? Answer this question... You have a tenner in your pocket; you need to buy food. Which shop do you go to? a) Tescos b) your local independant record shoppee?? If your answer is ‘b’ check the ad on page 21 and get in touch with Rich the Editor. Andy Cake
Manchester news FIVE Single reviews FOURTEEN Album reviews SIXTEEN Live reviews EIGHTEEN New Noise NINETEEN Manchester Listings TWENTY For more reviews, interviews, comment and info on all HighVoltage activities log on to highvoltage.org.uk See highvoltagesounds.co.uk for label info and new HighVoltage releases
EDITOR - Richard Cheetham - firstname.lastname@example.org FEATURES EDITOR - Adrian Barrowdale - email@example.com REVIEWS EDITOR - Fran Donnelly - firstname.lastname@example.org NEW BAND EDITOR - Liam Pennington - email@example.com LISTINGS EDITOR - Mike Caulfield - firstname.lastname@example.org DESIGN - Andy Cake | Soap | www.soapforall.co.uk CONTRIBUTORS - Alex Barbanneau, Hannah Bayfield, Sarah Boardman, Hannah Clark, Neil Condron, Phil Daker, Ella Swain, Anne-Marie Pattenden, Lauren Holden, Chris Horner, Hannah Clark, James Morton, Sophie Parkes, Liam Pennington, Andy Porter, Alice White, Gareth Roberts, Benjamin Thomas, Simon Smallbone, Jack Titley, Megan Vaughan.
Words: Fran Donnelly
It’ll have been and gone already when you read this, but at the time of going to press HV were getting ready for what looked set to be one of the best In The City festivals ever. But even as the delegates head back south, we’re just beginning a very exciting couple of months to see your diary take a battering.
The Deaf Institute with a staggering night
their wondrous new album at the Roadhouse
featuring Delphic, The KBC and Lucy & The
(09/11) before impressive new Deaf Institute
clubnight Now Wave bring Kitsuné-endorsed
A ‘Beepfest’ at the same venue packs HV
We Have Band on November 12th supported
favourites Jim Noir, The Beep Seals and
by Darlings Of The Split Screen.
The Answering Machine for a Saturday afternoon
Down Store Street, the late nights come thick and
of sweet sounds (18/10), but if you prefer your
fast at The Warehouse Project starting with Annie
melodies altogether more disorientating, then
Mac’s ballsy combination of Black Kids and Kissy
a night in which the warmth of The Shortwave
Sell-Out on October 25th. Chibuku bring
Set at Night & Day (07/11) will get feverish for
favourites like Justice and The Presets (08/11)
Undoubtedly a lot of you will have had your eyes
whilst Erol’s got Hercules & Love Affair and Diplo
on this year’s hot risers Foals and last year’s
Meanwhile, Keith are back, sounding seriously
for a typical rave-up .
CSS early in the month at the Academy. But
better than ever before with new single ‘Up In
Phew. When you’re done with that lot, you’ll
Manchester’s underground is where the real buzz
The Clouds’. Catch the launch at N&D to see that
be begging for the Christmas break!
is at this Autumn -just ask Friends Of Mine, who
we’re not lying on November 15th. Similarly
celebrate their fourth birthday on October 31st at
psyched, post-rock gems volcano! showcase
Event of the Month... Night & Day’s 17th Birthday
Competition On 7th November, Sunday Best are staging a winter reunion of their Bestival faves for the most eclectic Warehouse Project yet, bringing hot young indie-heads Florence &
Back when I turned 17, me and my mates went down Torky Park with a load of White Lightning and listened to The Seahorses. The premier music venue in Manchester has something a little better on the cards...
But equally the haunt of rock n rollers is about
The Machine, chart-bothering producer
times old too. John Bramwell is a familiar face
superteam Dan Le Sac vs Scroobius Pip and
and voice to Manchester music at large but
the legendary De La Soul to the Piccadilly
Night & Day is where it all began, and it’s there
the I Am Kloot frontman will return for a
If you fancy in then we’ve got a pair of tickets
heartwarming solo troubadour shows on the
to give away if you can answer us this one
Thursday (27th) opening celebrations.
question: Which Radio One DJ is the brains
Stephen Fretwell - some guy who just used to
behind Bestival and Sunday Best?
Delphic are the essential new band in town this
work the till - then plays a sold out night on the
Answers to email@example.com before
year and as such they’re the essential headliner
Friday. Fans missing out can catch him at the
4th November for your chance to win.
for the Saturday (November 29th) night.
start of his tour, November 8th.
Uncompromised in their mix of dance and indie,
Expect friends and drinking, drunks and new
the local lads are not “now” - they’re the future.
friends. And a top music hat-trick.
We said so.
INT R O DUC ING MERCY ARMS
The Australian band now arriving on a tide of expectation and outrageous sartorial elegance is Mercy Arms, whose staggering live shows have whetted the appetite of many on these shores eager for a taste of a newromanticism of such intensity it’s virtually obscene. Their guitarist Kirin Callinan is one reason why their distinctive sound is now making its way here, so reasonably enough he wanted to say a few things to High Voltage.
Musically assured and free-form, although Kirin dismisses any postrock comparisons, the honest lyrics are another standout point. Written essentially as a group affair, many come from the “personal space” of lead Thom Moore. Kirin says “Personally, my lyrics are usually stories, with the odd truthful experience thrown in to keep even my family guessing.”
Their new album, simply titled “Mercy Grunge flavoured Mercy Arms formed Arms”, acts as both introduction and at Christmas 2005, Kirin admitting to conversation, “a small fib” helping him to join. “We all with styled guitar riffs bashed against met again,” Sydney based Callinan thunderous and expansive solos and explains, “where I confessed to my lies brutally honest vocals to boot. By an about being a pianist. We busked on act of barbeque-melting providence the Crows Nest steps all night, not the steering hand, making any money but it was merry.” and not always fair with his firmness, was famed producer The four-piece, completed by bassist Tony Cohen, the typical Australian Ash Moss, drummer Julian Sudek, and character helping such an untypical singer and main writer Thom Mooe, Australian band. are nothing sort of a revelation based on a hurried few years sharing stages Kirin agrees with bassist Ash Moss with The Pixies, Editors, The Dirty with his praise for Cohen’s production Three and, befitting their status which helped bring out some of the amongst their countrymen, Nick Cave most honest confidence in songs like & The Bad Seeds. Their sound is a “Caroline” and “Shine mature and long overdue kick up the A Light Down.” Moss has spoken backside for alternative rock, giving the of the raw energy in the studio, post-punk sound something more than a feeling Kirin echoes. “Tony is a teenage poetry. classic, a genius. The recording process didn’t really change the Kirin explains that key influences were songs, it captured them.” shared and exchanged, “but I think our, um, ‘sound’ developed fairly Red-wine drinking Kirin – “the more organically. That is, we never tried to beer I drink, the more I slowly turn sound like anyone but, ugh this sounds into a bloke” he says, a statement bad, ‘ourselves’“We tend to get varied which would be at odds with his comparisons, even like Sigur Rós, and nationality were it not for his wardrobe yes it’s a compliment. But because our doing that already – is looking forward sound may remind someone of a great to the chance of Mercy Arms being band certainly doesn’t mean you are a called to arms in the UK. As for the good band. unusual dress-sense, it can only I much prefer if someone says we come from one please. “Our sound like nothing else!” wardrobe”, he helpfully explains. Liam Pennington
Rachael Kitchenside has been a familiar name to Manchester’s music fans for some time. Her early jazztinged solo recordings showcased a rich, breathy voice that shone like a diamond amongst Didos. Now Rachael’s collected a band and a whole new musical manifesto, and Run Toto Run are going to charm the pants off you. “I’d been working with Mike on guitar the whole time, then tracked James down because I really wanted a double-bass to bring a whole different dynamic to the music. Then Matt kind of found us,” explains Rachael. “He’s a real violin virtuoso and said he could see where we were going and wanted to help us get there, but I was like ‘Oh, I don’t want a violinist really…’ But then he told us that he did a lot of electronics as well.” Rachael is open about the influence that electronic music has had on her songwriting, as well as her greater vision for Run Toto Run. “There’s a band called British Expeditionary Force that triggered it for me. What they’re doing is so beautiful, so melodic, and the harmonies are just stunning. It’s so uplifting, Sigur Rós-y but more electro. And people like Radiohead have a hard electronic edge but it’s still beautiful. There are still flutes and acoustic guitars though, so hopefully we’re somewhere in between Sufjan Stevens and The Postal Service.”
Run Toto Run’s first release was the lusciously arranged ‘Your Face’, a split single with fellow Mancunian folkie Stickboy, and its sweet recorder revival coupled with Rachael’s Marilyn Monroe vocals is pure pop unfussiness. “I usually start with the vocal melody,” she says. “I come from a writing background - I did a masters in Literature - and I like to craft the words the make sure everything falls into place, even before the music’s there. It’s a collaboration between four people though, and I bring songs to the band to jam around with. It’s nice to see how it changes from the original idea.” With a show at In The City and host of new fans gathered on their On Your Floor Tour (“We ended up in a crack den on the first night so I phoned my friends to come to our rescue!”), Run Toto Run are certainly gathering pace. Get the ‘Your Face’ single from The Lost And Lonely Singles Club. Megan Vaughan
THE _SPINTO _BAND
Born out of a box of lead singer Nick Krill’s grandpa’s lyrics, The Spinto Band rose out of the basement to hit the big-time in 2005. Having produced seven self-released albums since their formation in 1996, they burst onto the scene with a massive back catalogue, landing them support slots for the likes of Arctic Monkeys and Art Brut. Three years of touring and a debut LP later, they’re returning to the UK to claim back their fans. “We haven’t been in a while,” explained drummer, Jeff Hobson, as we caught up with him ahead of the band’s hectic three-month touring schedule. “I’m super excited just to get over there, and in the past we’ve had pretty decent crowds.”
The fans themselves have a big role to play in The Spinto Band’s shows, and the latest attempt to bridge that audience/performer gap comes in the form of the ‘Roy Spinto Mask Competition’. Fans are invited to take photographs of themselves donning the downloadable mask in the most unusual of circumstances, with the best winning the top prize of an iPod. “They contribute to our existence and participation is huge,” said a humble Jeff, “If we can get people to put on our masks, that’s all we can ask for.” Keeping up with the local live scene is important to Hobson, who saw My Morning Jacket just a few nights ago, but playing In The City has him looking to the UK for up and coming talent. The band’s popularity on this side of the Atlantic has seen them touring with some of the most successful newcomers of the last few years, including old friends, The Mystery Jets, of whom Jeff is a big fan. “We’ve become good friends. They’re real cool guys.” Fans have had to wait almost a year to get their hands on the band’s own new material, since it was recorded in 2007 with previous label, Radiate Records. After a stressful year of being made redundant and signing with new label, Fierce Panda, they can’t wait to get their new sound out there. The new material is more upbeat and poppy than debut album, Nice
And Nicely Done, but still holds on to The Spinto Band’s talent for creating strong harmonic melodies over a rich backing track.
“It was a fresh start for us. We recorded it out in Los Angeles, so it was fun to stay there for a month and see the city.” But the first release from Moonwink is a real piece of nostalgia, from their days as a basement band from Delaware. “We recorded that song [‘Summer Grof’] back in 2002 as a basement number. We were thinking of songs to make an album with and that one came to mind, so we started reworking it. It may even turn out to be the most popular song.” This time round, the lads are taking a more personal approach to promotion via their website. Practicing every day at Jeff’s parents’ house gives rise to unique ways of unveiling new material in the form of home videos, the best of which features the band playing possible future single, ‘Later On’. It’s done using things you would find in an ordinary kitchen, and manages to produce a surprisingly comprehensive sound. “We’re just
goofing around, thinking of cool ways that we can keep people interested.” These ventures into the world of acting and directing films are nothing new for lead singer, Thomas Hughes. As ideas formulate about future singles and promotion, the possibility of making their own music videos is on the cards. “Thomas made a video for ‘Oh Mandy’ - not the one with the ice town, but a different one. So I guess we’ve already started to do that. Any video that we’re doing of our music, we have extremely heavy input on everything.”
In the coming months, the band will release further new material, with ‘Pumpkins and Paisley’ being a definite possibility for a single. But for now the road leads to Manchester, and the daunting prospect of playing to rooms of A&R scouts and a fanbase they’ll have to work for. Sophie Armour http://www.spintoband.com/ The album, ‘Moonwink’, is out now on Fierce Panda
Cut _Copy Unforgettable Season "Dude, your jeans are fucked…"gasps drummer Mitchell, lifting his sunglasses,"…is that what happens if you go out there?" Cut Copy are yet to venture beyond the Creamfields festival backstage after a night's downpour. Have the trio ever done the camping thing? "Yeah at our first Glastonbury but we couldn't even put the tent up," starts singer Dan. "The sun was going down and the instructions were wrong, so about half an hour into the endeavour we gave up and just left the tent. We put newspaper down in the van and spent three nights in there. Glamorous, I know." They might be a bit soft, but Cut Copy have been cult favourites in the UK for synth-pop fans ever since 2004's Bright Like Neon Love. Expectations were high for a follow-up, but few could've imagined how much it would surpass the debut this summer when In Ghost Colours surged straight to number one in their native Australia whilst receiving glowing reviews across the board. When the band came back to Glastonbury it was our turn to give the surprise. "We thought it could be a little bit rubbish," admits Dan. "Most of the bands started on the Friday so we thought what the fuck are we doing here on Thursday? But wow…"
The Dance Village was teeming with people – so much so that getting into Cut Copy's spacious tent half an hour before their evening slot was impossible. Timely, the rain came down and the plastic ponchos danced outside for the first time that year. For an outfit more used to club shows in this country, what do they make of the unique UK festival experience? "The weather's a bit intense," observes drummer Mitchell. "You don't experience it anywhere else in the world but here. You guys are more resilient and are determined to have a good time no matter what. Everyone's all smiles, it's kind of strange. Probably the drugs." Possibly, but this sound bathes in feel-good vibes even without chemical assistance. From Melbourne to Ibiza; a warm four-tothe-floor thump going into the hands-in-the-air chorus leads the loose euphoria of a Cut Copy show. As Tim puts it; "The audience is very much involved in what we're doing. It's not exclusively about what's happening on stage – it takes dancing to make it complete." He laughs, "I'd like to think it's a generally positive experience." You'd hope so considering the Antipodeans spend the year travelling in an eternal sunshine, leaving the northern hemisphere's summer for Australia's in December and showcasing the new LP that's monopolised the live set. With the shimmer of 'Out There On The Ice'
and the Balearic wave of 'Hearts Of Fire' bringing the heady bounce of Technique-era New Order to the 21st Century, it's easy to feel the place this album's at, but where did it begin? "When we stopped touring," answers Dan. "We suddenly had the time to listen to a load of records that was new music to us… lots of 70s American pop like Fleetwood Mac and ELO. "I guess working with [DFA coowning, The Rapture producing] Tim Goldsworthy shaped things a lot in terms of giving us a discoband direction. But then what caught me about writing music in the first place was being able to list the stuff that inspired you, before going nuts doing whatever you want." Given its reception, does In Ghost Colours feel like a significant step forward?
"With the first record it was like a step out into the unknown," the singer continues. "The second progressed from that and captured more what we're looking to sound like. But next time we're definitely going to take it further.”
"I think we'd like to have another record out sooner this time – it's something that we want to be a little more organised about. If all our festivals for the summer got cancelled, I wouldn't be that upset, you know? I'd be happy to get right back down to it." Cut Copy's growing international status must have tested their touring dynamic somewhat. In Manchester they played a compactly vibrant Night 'n' Day gig, whereas back home they play to stadiums, where the profile of pop music has changed thanks to their compatriots Midnight Juggernauts, The Presets and just the whole Modular roster in general. "In Australia dance music's more relevant now," reckons Mitchell. "We've not really a rich history in it other than a few acts, but it's crossed over into the mainstream. "It's exciting for us to have a whole new audience for our music, but we always like that challenge of coming over here and wiping the slate clean to win people over. We have to work a bit harder." Timely, the sun now comes out and with our increasingly accelerated summers becoming more and more about the lights and music, 2008 will always be remembered by Cut Copy's soundtrack. Fran Donnelly www.myspace.com/cutcopy
HERCULES _LOVE AFFAIR The outlandishly hip Andy Butler – ginger hair shaven at the sides, shades and earring-ed – has just been vaguely attempting describe his music with Hercules & Love Affair to millions of Radio One listeners. But when he comes across High Voltage an hour before playing the Creamfields main stage, something else has his attention; "I see some people on some crazy rides over there." He points past the press tent to a distantly catapulting Inverter and smiles, "We don't do a techno party with rides and a fun fair. It's super cool – I love coming here and seeing how passionate people here are. In terms of festival culture, England definitely trumps America. "I think in general, UK crowds tend to be a bit more spirited. The live show has had a very warm reception in the States but in contrast we're not playing festivals with people coming to see Hercules & Love Affair. The sheer numbers and the open-minded enthusiasm is the real difference."
HV: You've only been playing live for a few months now – how far have you come on? "We've developed so much as a group. There was a lot of pressure after positive response to the record added expectations, and then obviously Antony [Hegarty] wasn't gonna be able to tour with us. All of these things put heat under us but I think we've done a really good job and the show's gotten a lot tighter than we could've been initially." HV: What do you think it's like to watch live?
was all about this sort of utopian community building. There's also just a lot of shit to watch on stage, so it can be kinda spectacular in seeing the horn players and seeing our singers." Pulled together by the mythical quality of its aesthetic, the references on Hercules & Love Affair's debut album map the soulful evolution of early dance music via Candi Staton, Giorgio Moroder, Inner City and the Danceteria. It's classic in every sense of the word, harking back to a time when DJs saved lives – but how important is dance music these days?
"I'm not sure. We were talking about this recently – I think there's a spirit of community that exists on stage that I can't help but think would be infectious and translate to an audience member. There are eight of us on stage and we all come from totally different backgrounds, different races, sexualities, genders, everything."
"The power or influence of it hasn't been used as effectively as it has been in the past," asserts Andy, formerly a DJ himself.
You'd expect nothing less to come from the city of the Stonewall riots and of course the era-defining sounds of their DFA home. Like labelmates LCD Soundsystem, the band are very much a New York one, albeit somewhat more colourful counterparts, driven by the oscillating androgyny of vocalists Nomi, Kim Ann and the aforementioned Hegarty.
HV: Do you think the potential's still there for dance to be a serious social force?
"Our show is about bringing a lot of different people together because of music and I think that's a noble endeavour. It used to happen a lot at dance clubs and raves when it
"People don't explore that aspect of it as much anymore – it's more about scenes that are created, a silly party night out rather than anything more sincere."
"I do, it's just not being mined for all it can do. A lot of listeners dismiss dance music as superfluous or fluffy and illegitimate. I come from a really different stance – it can be a really serious, really meaningful sort of music and I hope artists will start to approach it in that way more and more. I think there could be some sort of wonderful renaissance, with some really genius music being made."
HV: So you actually believe that there could be another revolution driven by dance culture? "Definitely. It comes in waves – disco, house, techno. It could do again. Hopefully we'll be a part of it." Watching them on stage, you wouldn't doubt their chances. Full of fashionista allure and confidence, Hercules & Love Affair have soundtracked Chanel, and their tours are cosmopolitan forays stopping only at cultural epicentres like Paris, Berlin, Milan and Manchester. Although apparently it's not all it's cracked up to be as Andy explains; "You think it would be glamorous or fun," he sighs, "but we're usually only in a city for say sixteen hours at a time, it's really quite gruelling." Saying this, Butler pauses and looks around him. "But it's not a drag," he smiles. "It's hard, but there's a lot of joy that's unique to being in Hercules & Love Affair. I'm on the road with eight people that I love, and I'm playing music. That's what I've always wanted to do with my life." Fran Donnelly www.myspace.com/ herculesandloveaffair
FUJIYA _AND MIYAGI Most people know Metronomy as a remixer extraordinaire, reworking hits by pop luminaries like Kate Nash, Gorrillaz, and Goldfrapp into wonky nuggets of brilliance. He’s even put Britney Spears and U2 through his strange laboratory of skewed disco, although their respective labels weren’t hugely keen on his unique vision of their mega hits and the remixes remained unreleased. Many people who only know him as someone who turns out versions of other people’s songs will be pleasantly surprised when they realize his new album, Nights Out, is a fantastic piece of disco-tinged pop in its own right. For mainman Joe Mount, it’s both a blessing and a curse being known for his own interpretations of other people’s music. “It can be annoying,” he muses, “but I guess I can’t complain because it’s where a lot of people hear about us from, and
I do really enjoy doing my own versions of people‘s songs”. Whereas with debut album “Pip Paine Pay the £5000 you owe”, he showcased his uncanny knack for catchy instrumentals that stick in your hear for weeks, the new album is a far more song based affair. “I think I just got more confident with my singing as we played live more and more,” explains Joe,“ so with this album I was really trying to make it more like a traditional album, based on song writing, as opposed to Pip Paine, which was more like a collection of all the different things I’d done. A lot of it comes from trying stuff out live, and it’s often easier to connect if it’s got lyrics and singing rather than being completely instrumental. With this album I felt like I was writing the songs with the thought of playing them live as a band always at the back of my mind, like what parts Oscar and Gabriel will be playing, as opposed to before where I wouldn‘t have really taken that into consideration much”. Whereas in the past they might have needed gimmicks such as shoddy dance routines and costumes with flashing lights to keep audiences’ attention, they have become a pretty engaging live band in their own right now. The woozy melodies that formed the backbone of tracks such as You Could Easily Have Me and Black Eyed Burnt Thumb are still present, but now they play second fiddle to Mount’s surprisingly strong voice and turn of phrase.
The album has a loose conceptual theme of going out; the glossy promise of hedonistic thrills and the reality of drunken lows. From intro to outro it’s clearly a thought out affair rather than the charmingly ramshackle nature of their debut.
“I think to a certain extent these days people don’t really listen to albums from start to end like they used to, it’s more a case of listening to individual mp3s on a playlist or whatever. I wanted everything from the artwork to the sleeve notes to be right because you don‘t really get that with an mp3. With “Nights Out” I wanted it to be more like a cohesive whole from start to finish than a fairly random collection of singles.” This may be the case, but such is his ear for a hook that most tracks on the album sound like potential singles anyway.
The tables will be switched for the first time with this album, with other producers being unleashed on his oeuvre rather than the other way round. “I still don’t know how I feel about people remixing my songs”, he laughs, “I find it quite strange listening to them. I generally let the label sort out everything like that. We’re really looking forwards to playing this album out live because we‘re really pleased with it, and hopefully people will get into it.” Expect the homemade brilliance of Nights Out to be part of your nightlife for the foreseeable future. Alex Barbanneau
Unlike many of the bands around today, Fujiya and Miyagi have not come to people’s attention riding on an overnight tidal wave of hype and industry “buzz”, but instead have slowly built up a reputation for quality over the past few years. Mysteriously appearing out of the blue over six years ago with their first 7” release, no one knew much about the secretive duo apart from the fact they were probably Japanese. Which, of course, they aren’t. Steve and Dave hail from somewhere a few miles west of Tokyo, namely Brighton. Their Krautrock influenced disco releases on respected label Tirk gained them the attention of dance music fans and indie kids alike, and their tracks started popping up in mixes by tastemaker DJ’s such as James Murphy and Erol Alkan. Their sparse yet solid grooves suit the dance floor just as well as the stage, which is one of the reasons why their new album, Lightbulbs, is meeting with such rapturous reception. It’s been a long time coming, but they are finally receiving the sort of attention they deserve.
This critical praise seems to have passed singer David Best by completely however. When I ask him how it feels to start receiving a lot more positive attention, he seems quite taken aback. “Oh, are we?”, he asks, mildly surprised. “That’s nice. To be honest, I haven’t really read any reviews or anything like that yet. I haven’t really left the house much in the past couple of weeks really. I’ve been looking after my girlfriend’s cat” With such a laidback attitude towards the release of his new album, I’m not surprised that he doesn’t share the world-conquering ambitions of his former label mates New Young Pony Club, who also started to get noticed from their early singles on Tirk. “I don’t think we really have the same sort of aims as bands like that,” he muses quietly. “I suppose with them their sound is a lot more traditionally “pop” than ours anyway. I mean, it would be really nice to be that big and sell that many records, but as long as we can carry on making the records we want to and keep releasing them that’s good enough for us.” In fact, Fujiya and Miyagi are already more concerned with their next album than the one that has just come out. “Yeah, we’re already thinking about the next album,” laughs Dave, “we just want to get straight on with it. I think the next album we’re going to move away from “groove” songs a bit, so it’ll be a bit freer with less structure, much more experimental I think. I guess that sort of Kraut sound is what a
lot of people know us for, so it’ll be interesting to try something new” The influence of German off kilter masters Can certainly does loom large over a lot of Fujiya and Miyagi’s work, from the metronome staccato drum beats to the endlessly looping guitar phrases and tight bass lines. Many songs on the new album belie an influence from the other side of the Atlantic though.
from playing more and more live, getting more confident with the vocals, and then that translated to the new songs.” The songs are more certainly more playful than before, with the stream of consciousness ice cream anthem “Knickerbocker” opening the album in a gloriously surreal style. You could do a lot worse than get lost in the hypnotic world of this mysterious duo.
“Yeah, we were listening to a lot of Soul while we were making Lightbulbs” explains Dave, “a lot of Northern Soul stompers and early Motown stuff. A lot of those tracks were almost like early versions of house, the way they had a really simple beat and repetitive phrases. I think you can hear it on tracks like “Uh” and “Sore Thumb”.
The chord structures and vocals especially.” It’s definitely true that Lightbulbs has more of a confident swing to it as a whole than many of the rigid rhythms of their previous work. “I think a lot of that comes
n e m k l a The W Them and us With New York’s favourite band releasing their fourth album ght You and Me this month, we thou it might be a good opportunity to r get them in and have a chat. Afte all, there aren’t too many bands that get HV so excited that the mere mention of their name has writers furiously air drumming on t desks and howling like wolves, bu The Walkmen are that band. e We chatted to Walt and got all th answers we’d ever need… twelve
The Walkmen have been knocking for around making beautiful sounds of end the wing follo now, s six year m Jonathan Fire*Eater, so was albu four an important milestone to reach? Walt says, “I don't know…I'm very proud of our new record though. I'm happy we survived long enough to make it.” ‘Survival’ might seem a strong word, but bearing in mind how Jonathan… vanished in a haze of mistrust of commercial success, maybe it’s apt. After all, The Walkmen are a band with a serious ‘cult’ following but limited to mainstream success. We wanted know if this was something that had e been cultivated through adherenc g ethin som nd’, ‘sou to a specific that’s identifiably Walkmen… “No, I didn't realize that at all! to This record sounds most natural all we ic mus of kind me - like the love. And a lot of that music is older. We're just more comfortable with those kinds of sounds.” And ‘those kind’ of sounds are what will ; grab anyone new to the Walkmen that, and the fact that they’re one of the few bands still making ‘albums’ rather than 14 songs that happen to appear on a record together, something that might escape newer, more fashionable s bands obsessed with selling track
y on iTunes. “Yeah, on this we reall and long a e mak to ted wan complex album that you can listen to over and over. So we ended up y with something that isn't that flash g or hip but, in my opinion, somethin to fying satis more h muc ately ultim perform every night. Its more in line ally with the old albums that we actu ” day. y ever listen to In fact, speaking of albums, it’s noteworthy that this is possibly the . album that best rewards hard work ‘The like les sing of ess The succ Rat’ from 2004’s Bows+Arrows was richly deserved, but perhaps misleading as the band have gone on to make songs that, whilst no en’ less compelling, are maybe ‘hidd more than previously. Has this been intentional? “That's great. We definitely were not consciously trying to put together an album of ‘non-immediate’ music.” So what do you think it is that shapes the albums? “We just tried to make songs that sounded good to us and that were solid enough to withstand live shows and long recording sessions. The ones that made it through, that we didn't get sick of, are the ones on the record. So they've been well tested.” The new album comes almost exactly two years after 2006’s A Hundred Miles Off which is by no
means slacking, but there has been much talk of the way the album was “pieced together” – why was it so complex? Was it challenging to make? Walt continues…
“A lot of our songs are formed from separate pieces of music that we've come up with independently. We put some songs together like puzzles. And others happen more quickly and organically. Whichever way things happen, the songs get picked apart over and over and edited and rearranged until we think they are bulletproof. 9 out of 10 songs die in the process” That sounds like hard work…“Getting together 14 songs takes a fucking eternity.”
e coming UK tour, an offer that mad Perhaps more so than on any with up kept y reall HV wish we’d s previous album, You and Me mixe our trumpet lessons. Still, maybe and m gloo e essiv oppr the next time with their ‘jolly’ album, occasional hollow of the band’s we can bring our duck whistle and sound with some of the more comedy hats eh? upbeat lyrics and Hamilton an for ear Leithauser's natural Adrian Barrowdale uplifting melody, albeit one swathed The new LP You & Me is out now in reverb and off-kilter Dylan on Fierce Panda records intonations. Why was that to rtant impo felt you g somethin t do this time? Walt tells us “I don' mix to like We . know y reall everything up and to not let . anything get to happy or too dark light very s start Girl’ n adia Like ‘Can just and happy and gets a little dark the Its . song that like I . time in newest of the bunch.” for So what does that mean is next the Walkmen? Does it get darker from here or is this the sign of a band shaking off ‘demons’? “Some people think this record is really dark. We sorta though it was pretty dark when we finished it. You a never know what people are gonn think. We're a pretty jolly bunch though so maybe our next record will reflect that even more.” it’ll And if it is, you can be sure that be worth checking out. At the time of writing, The Walkmen were advertising for local musicians to join them on stage for their forth-
singles It Hugs Back - Work Day (4AD)
Single of the month Keith - Up In The Clouds (Lucky Number) After a summer of caning a set of what’s almost all new material, the boys are back and they’re significantly better than before. And given how much HV loved Keith’s 2006 debut Red Thread, that’s saying something. Fans shouldn’t worry as this single doesn’t abandon the Keith blueprint entirely – there’s still that groove, those organ keys and Oli’s bowlcut – but it does mark a huge improvement. Having
harnessed the much in-demand skills of pop superproducer Dan Carey (he co-wrote Kylie’s ‘Slow’ - nuff said) they’re sounding like absolute bastards, much louder and more confident to make older recordings sound sluggish.
heady ambitions for their sound. The album’s due in the New Year. Get excited.
Not to shine boots at 4AD, but with Blonde Redhead, The Breeders and Stereolab they have a pretty impressive alumni. So Matthew, Jack, Dimitri and Paul of folk lo-fi It Hugs Back, hailing from Kent, have a lot to deliver. The new single ‘Work Day’ is a gentle pop piece with melodic guitar and warbling synth
Highlight of the new set, ‘Up In The Clouds’ starts with typically psychedelic notions, spiralling around before peaking in a nauseous ascent into the titular realm before crashing back down on Will Seargent-esque guitar wails. B-side ‘Welcome To My Fairground’ is a similarly heady bout, signalling Keith’s
Cats In Paris - Cold Products (Kruger Singles Club) Well, where to start? Based on the sheer lunacy to be heard on this release, Manchester four-piece Cats In Paris have been locked away in a dark room somewhere in a monkeys-withtypewriters kind of way, creating an extended other-worldly din until reaching a Eureka! moment where
Considering Sky Larkin have been flitting around the scene for a good couple of years it is frankly bizarre that this is their very first proper single. Built around leading lady Katie’s finest Karen O wail ‘Fossil, I’ is a fine slice of smashand-grab bluster without ever really threatening to tear up any rule books.
Warning! Any public attempts to dance to this single’s ADHD beat will inevitably make you look somewhat twattish and probably repel you to the opposite sex forever. Built around some busy awkward funk guitar workout and sticks a-flying beat, the scouse trio’s latest dip into second album Live At Dead Lake is just what you’ve grown accustomed too from the group’s previous highly charged single cuts. But for all its clever instrumental breaks, lyrical quirks and what sounds suspiciously like someone running a vacuum cleaner through the studio whilst the red light is on, you have to work seriously hard to recall a second of it once the song is over. Given the impressive musicality the trio are only too willing to flaunt you can’t help but hope that better things aren’t too far off.
The Walkmen - The Blue Route (Fierce Panda)
The Slips - Superbeat (Lucky Egg)
Taken from new album You & Me, the new The Walkmen single ‘The Blue Route’ is a drunken waltz with a metric pint of melancholy. Regret seeps through the record with such life-affirming assurance the yellowing autumn leaves of the tree opposite this reviewer’s bedroom window appeared to plummet to the ground in a show of solidarity.
It seems like a lifetime since Fischerspooner awoke the sleeping beast that was big, camp electro. Justice et al have carried the mantle in more recent times, however it’s the original protagonists whom The Slips pay most homage.
The track has all the elements of languid rejection, and is all the more beautiful for its haunting honesty. No-one brings back postcards from the bleak side of life with such eagerness as The Walkmen, which is a trait to be celebrated with all the strength of a New York winter.
The four-piece could be an incredibly relaxed Pavement, with a dreamy stargazing sound, and to go all out on comparisons… a hint of the tweeness of Moldy Peaches too. B-side ‘Take Apart’
is compatibly scuzzy with ambient segents, hitting the melancholy hard. With debut album expected early next year, It Hugs Back are hotly tipped to help to maintain the rebirth of youthful ambient lo-fi.
Sky Larkin - Fossil, I (Wichita)
Hot Club De Paris - My Little Haunting (Moshi Moshi)
accompanied by Matthew’s sweet-soft voice (with slight American accent because they want to be a mellow Sonic Youth as we read in the press release, ahem).
‘Superbeat’ is, by its own definition, a stormingly energetic number which succeeds where lesser acts trying to break into the ‘credible electro’ bracket have fallen by the wayside. Their considerable experience working as studio engineers for the likes of Massive Attack and Bjork has clearly given them a knack for weeding out a tune, and they don’t disappoint here. Look out for the equally pleasing Mirwais remix which provides another dimension to great effect.
Liam Pennington Mike Caulfield
Run Hide Survive Dyson/Pigeon (Show Off Recordings) If ever there was proof required that there’s more to Sheffield than identikit Monkeys-alikes then this is brilliantly, outrageously IT. Run Hide Survive channel the twin energies of Justice and Simian Mobile Disco in this double A-side to create a glittering electro car
Friendly Fires - Paris XL Recordings Any dance geek worthy of the name knows that Berlin is the place to be now, so quite why this Kompakthumping trio want to relocate to Paris is a bit of mystery. Nevertheless, they do a convincing job of stating the French capital's
each member turns to the same musical page for a song’s duration. ‘Cold Products’ is one part terrifying acid flashback to two parts whimsical walkin-the-woods orchestration, the warm glow of holding hands for the first time cruelly stolen away by your loved one’s face melting. It’s a kind of Grizzly Bear meets Disney face-off, a warm embrace of cartoon sentimentality forever tainted by the knowledge that the animator has been secretly placing
phallic symbols in the background. Another stellar release from Kruger then, and with enough intrigue and eyebrow-raising to put the incoherent craziness of Cats In Paris firmly on the map.
It is certainly pleasingly beefy, a brief sonic air raid aiming to grab the listener through raw power rather than simple quotability, but it’s lacking that magic touch that made their previously released 7” ‘One Of Two’ so essential. A separated-at-birth comparison can be made with touring partners Los Campesinos!, with Sky Larkin representing the spoilt teenager to Los Camp!’s geeky older brother, but it’ll
take a bit more gas in the follow-up for them to truly grab the attention their live shows prove they deserve.
bomb, packed with disco filth and out of control beeps and squeals. Terrific chainsaw itchy-glitchiness directly descended from Daft Punk’s ‘Aerodynamic’ courses through the veins of ‘Pigeon’, somehow marrying all of the elements of the aforementioned French acts with an undeniably British brutality; it couldn’t be anything but party central. ‘Dyson’ kicks it just as spectacularly, conjuring up a basement rave with beats and
pieces to steal for. Based on the sheer, highly adulterated power of this, their debut release, Run Hide Survive will find themselves high up on the Store Street bill if the Warehouse Project have any sense.
case in this re-recorded version of their old single, boasting some additional backing vocals from Au Revoir Simone. As ever with Friendly Fires, percussion is the winner, with tribal drum patterns propelling the track busily along. It makes it a must for the immediate world of the dancefloor, though in more permanent form - such as on their forthcoming self-titled album -
it may prove unable to outlive the hedonism of such moments. Until that realisation dawns though, there's beaucoup de bonhomie to be had.
albums More often than not, traditional folk music from Britain’s remote communities is either halfarsed and limp, or so fired up by rural hardship and lovers lost at sea that you’re in tears only a few songs in. Kentucky born Will Oldham strikes a perfect balance with this live album, which was recorded in Edinburgh in 2006.
Album of the month
Various Artists Electric Chair Saved My Life (mixed by: Unabombers) (Tirk)
With the Final Execution long faded into memory, the time has come for a final compilation that's as madly eclectic and niche as those legendary nights were.
Fluke drops the first big bomb of the seventy-five minutes. Over that time From breakbeats, to funk to jackin' house. The Human League and Metro Area even fill in a poppy gap.
Electric Chair was never so much defined by a sound as it was by its attitude. But nonetheless, this comp has the sounds of the Music Box basement right down. Granted though that half the time you couldn't care less what was playing cos it always had enough shake n bounce to keep you moving.
Best of all though, the mighty Roy Davis Jr's 'Gabriel' makes a big-time push for the club hit finale when Rufus' 'Ain't Nobody' goes against Frankie Knuckles. Having veered into every dance territory - from the underground to the overground - it's classic stuff to wrap things up in the club's true spirit.
Fearsome start with the crowd cheering intro to Shut Up And Dance settting the tempo before
"Promotional CD – Not For Sale" watermark has been coolly vocodered into the mix. Undoubtedly, Electric Chair is/was one of the Manchester institutions of the modern era. A record could never really aptly capture what was fun about a night with them, but grab atin of Red Stripe, cheer along with the crowd and you could.
For the most part it is essential stuff, and it's all given a typically fluid Unabombers treatment. Such is their style, even our
Tilly And The Wall - O (Moshi Moshi)
South Central The Owl of Minerva (Egregore)
There is one theory that states any band who have a tap dancer hail from Gimmick Hell and should be sacrificed on an altar made from Hendrix’s charred Stratocaster. On the other hand though, any band who go onstage with a tap dancer surely have more balls than a Metallica fan convention. On the evidence of O, the third and (probably) breakthrough record from Tilly And The Wall, the truth lies somewhere between the two.
No one act has symbolised the indie-dance crossover spirit of the last two years more than Brighton-based South Central. Except maybe DIOYY?. And Late of the Pier. And the Ghost Frequency, and Friendly Fires, and... well, OK, every fucker. But SC are different - while the rest sign up for gigs at matter and the WHP, Rob and Keith are running the wrong way down the street, taking their dirgey dance to toilet venues up and down the country.
O doesn’t exactly “kick off” with opener ‘Tall Tall Grass’; rather, it’s like the polite jangle of a shop door, its dual harmonies so sweet they give you sugar rattles in less than three minutes. Next thing you know however, ‘Pot Kettle Black’ is yelling at you with grungy guitars and Riot Grrrl attitude. Suddenly Tilly And The Wall have found a bass guitar that can only be picked up by your bowels.
Live, SC are like five hurricane seasons arriving at once, their self-made analogue synths battling with a full rock band for sonic supremacy. On record, it's pretty much the same deal. However, listening back to their output, compiled here on The Owl of Minerva, it's the moments of crystal melody that attract the ear, not the abrasive beats.
Thankfully, no return is made to saccharine purgatory, and layers of stampeding percussion (thank you, tap shoes) bring the whole sound alive. ‘Dust Me Off’ nods to the empowered nonchalance of Chrissy Hynde, while ‘Falling Without Knowing’ is an experiment into gloomy Depeche Mode synths, with a wonderfully suffocating darkness to match. Granted, O throws up the odd Pipettes chorus (‘Alligator Skin’, ‘Beat Control’) but these moments are vastly outweighed by gravelly distortion and electronics straight out of The Menace by Elastica. (You know, that noisefest they made with Mark E Smith when they were all on smack…) If only there were points available for Most Improved.
Bonnie 'Prince' Billy - Is It The Sea? (Domino)
Los Campesinos! We Are Beautiful, We Are Doomed (Wichita)
What is standard practice for most acts five months after the release of an album? Get back out on the road to counter falling sales? Release single number six? Disown the entire record? If you’re sprightly Cardiff seven-piece Los Campesinos! you defy all convention and release another album. “Surely it’s just crappy out-takes and rejected Bsides!” I hear you cry. No it ain’t. It’s better than the debut. All the elements that caught the attention in the first place remain – the shouty boy-girl vocals, the unharnessed energy, the (you guessed it) unmistakable twee – but
Exciting and unpredictable, Abe Vigoda come with an album which is their first easily accessible to UK fans, even if some of the treble-heavy carnival punk is too much of an assault on the ears. The new LA scene is throwing out some mighty examples of unpredictable bands as part of an ongoing underground circuit now running amok on both sides of the Atlantic.
Take for example the Braxe-esque Dolls, all fat chords over half-paced rhythms, or the shattered glass notes of new track Aeon, hinting at unchartered depths on next year's full debut. As beastly as Golden Dawn and Fall rip-off Nothing Can Go Wrong may be, its sounds like these that could nudge them ahead of the maximal house pack. Not that the hard stuff isn't a riot - most of SC's releases to date have been the match of anything by, say, Alex Metric or Japanese Popstars . But they know it's time to move on. The Owl of Minerva is the sound of a page turning - albeit very, very loudly.
Taking some of Scotland’s finest folk players on tour, Oldham breathes new life into his back catalogue of Americana. ‘New Partner’ retains his warm country twang, but deep swathes of fiddle and Caledonian backing vocals place the song somewhere between Nashville
Abe Vigoda Skeleton (Bella Union)
The breathless Abe Vigoda are irreverent to the extreme, taking a muddle of de-tuned guitars and muffled drums and turning them into senseless, manic three minute creations taking into a laboratory two
and Loch Ness. Similarly, this ceilidh violin cheers up the perennially miserable ‘Arise Therefore’. ‘Molly Bawn’ is a traditional tune that has been passed from generation to generation, but re-arranged for Oldham by friend and collaborator Alisdair Roberts to include 1960s Doors organ and waves of twisting melodica. Although the story of Molly Bawn is a powerful one; murder, despair and hopelessness fill every verse, this is not one of those uncomfortable moments of public heartbreak. The difference between this version and the countless others before it is that Oldham and
Roberts have remembered that music should be a pleasure to listen to. Their ‘Molly Bawn’ is a groove, a dark one, but one that you can nod your head to. And that, of course, is what music is for, traditionally…be doing a lot worse.
everything has been turned up a notch. ‘We Are Beautiful…’ is ‘Hold On Now Youngster…’ in panoramic vision, designed for bigger venues but with added warmth and higher highs to counter any lost intimacy. Lines like “you said he got his teeth fixed/I’m gonna break them” pepper throughout, razor sharp turns of phrase just the right side of amateur poetic pondering: a line occasionally crossed on the debut but gloriously incisive here. ‘You’ll Need Those Fingers For Crossing’ is gleefully melancholic stuff, ‘Ways To Make It Through The Wall’ is an agenda-setting barnstormer of an opening – indeed the
only real problem is that such a powerful start proves impossible to sustain.
parts My Bloody Valentine and one part runaway ice-cream van. At their most extreme, guitarists Juan Velazquez and Michael Vidal throw riffs sounding more like steel drums, befitting the self-styled 'tropical punk' approach. Throwing much more than mere caution at the mixing desk, at least a track like 'Visi Rings' comes as a terrifically unexpected respite in a flurry of jumbled, distracting songs with the vocals turned into surrogate basslines.
and sensibility would make this band and their albums all the better, but perhaps that is not quite the point...
‘We Are Beautiful…’ is a surprisingly assured sophomore effort, expertly combining the uncontrollable enthusiasm we’ve come to expect with a newfound ambition and added scope. It’s still geeky and vaguely awkward, but is now much better dressed. Roll on February for album number three…
On the flipside of all this exhaustive insanity, however, is a lingering doubt about the band specifically and their scene more generally. Much tidying up
Neil Condron Megan Vaughan
live After a long set from support act, Holy Fuck, who were received almost as long as the headliners, the band we’re here for are holding things up.
Foals with Holy Fuck Academy 1
Foals finally arrive onstage only to tease us with several minutes of noise making, with the only light coming from rows of blue bulbs providing the backdrop, as people scramble forward to catch a glimpse of what’s going on. The excitement hits when they kick things off with ‘The French Open’. The fans might not understand the lyrics, but they don’t seem to care when it comes to a good chorus. The temperature rises to sweatdripping heights for ‘Balloons’ the single that got them here. The pits produced by Holy Fuck die down
“Ooooh we’re all getting old now,” whispered a lady in the crowd at the Bridgewater Hall Tindersticks performance. She was a 40 year-old woman who has supported the 12-piece band hailing from Nottingham for as long as she can remember. Which might have been quite some time, seen as they’ve released 10 albums.
Tindersticks Bridgewater Hall
Richie Hawtin with Gaiser, Troy Pierce and Barem Minus Presents... The Warehouse Project eighteen
The audience swirl into the interlude bar at Bridgewater Hall for wine and chat before Tindersticks. They consist of a) middle-class middle-aged couples b) 8 year-olds, and c) One Goth in his thirties. What an interesting bunch and you don’t even want to hear about the afterparty.
as an uncontrollable desire to dance takes over. Foals performance is as tight as ever, even as lead singer, Yannis Philippakis, takes advantage of solos and instrumental breakdowns to run about the stage in desperation for contact.
hand. Dancing, jumping, crowd surfing, no-one knows quite what’s going on any more. And before you get the chance to glance up at the stage once more, it’s over. But we’d had enough heat for one night.
NEW NOISE Send your new band tips to GIG of the month firstname.lastname@example.org to appear in the next New Noise round-up…
But for the anthem the album forgot that is ‘Hummer’, the barrier breaks down. The atmosphere is electric and Yannis can’t keep out of it any longer. He abandons his guitar and dives into the crowd. There is a surge forward and bouncers lose him in the carnage for a while as the sea of his checked shirt-donning lookalikes engulfs him.
Bikini Black Special
Pulled Apart By Horses
The Von Kemps
The electro-rock Bikini Black Special are the five-piece with the heart and soul of a gang on a mission to fuel a revolution. Pounding dance beats fuel rich vocals with sly, vicious lyrics, they are fire-raising live prospect whose intelligence fast becoming one of the names to know on the eve of the December release date of their debut album. If the enticing lyrics don’t drag you into their delicious trap, the magnetic music will undoubtedly flash up on your radar.
The Leeds based noise botherers and self-styled melodramatic punksters should not be strangers to anyone with two functioning ears. Celebrated by many, the whirling live sets and highoctane songs feed the soul and shake the foundations. “Meat Balloon” and “High Five Swan Drive” are just two delicious slices of dirge-rock from the same stables (sorry) as Mother Vulpine and Concentration Champ. Already noted by packing the BBC stage at Reading the band are now kicking down the door of every gig-night at which you’ve ever danced-todeath.
Sounding like Editors being tickled, The Strangeways are nonetheless a moody bunch. It really works though, all the mentions of sweat running down spines, hotel lights, and being left with nothing much in the world but a haunting voice and skittering, echoing guitars. The band are boisterous and smart, whose melodies are – appropriately enough – instantly arresting. “Engage” and “Bone Idol” will ensure any negative attitudes about the youth of today will be blown out of the water.
Full of vim, heart, and the kind of melodies you can take home in a bucket, The Cities are a slight return to guitar-band with the honesty often missing from the bigger boys. Tales of lostlove are nothing new, but filled with a lyrical twist here and rolling riffs there, lifting up the sound into something very special indeed. The sense that they could roll up out from a van with a moment’s notice to provide killer grooves miles away from poser Killers sounds.
Coming across with all the order of the Hodge Conjecture, Von Kemps are a mad bunch of rockers who turn their hands to rap, whose groove kick in with hubris and arrogance. They bundle a rare old number of emotions into songs which genuinely shock and surprise. Still taking babysteps in the live scene of their native Manchester, great strides are doubtlessly to follow.
They return for an encore with ‘Two Steps Twice’ and things get a bit out of
Tindersticks play the majority of their seventh studio album, The Hungry Saw, minus cofounding member Dickon Hinchcliffe, in this huge arena, having emerged from a five-year holiday and ready for some hot live action. The album is just as brooding and cinematic as previous material, as in ‘The Turns We Took’ and ‘The Hungry Saw’, Stuart Staples’ unmistakable vocals (that sound a little like solo Brian Ferry in this reporter’s opinion) flow deep and now are surprisingly sharp and clearer than in previous performances.
Tindersticks, with saccharinesweet melody and harrowing ballad. Tindersticks’ amazing capacity for inventive arrangements with over fifteen different instruments remains, and individual members’ passion remains clearly evident. They span through genre, with melancholy and joy and create a pop-rockcum-jazz movement that is undoubtedly moving, and beautiful for any age. Alice White
Key track: ‘Electric Eye’
‘Come Feel The Sun’ and ‘All The Love’ provide a pop
Along with Sven Vath and Ricardo Villalobos, Richie Hawtin is one of the most in-demand techno DJs today, and yet the man’s history cannot be understated; heading the second wave of Detroit in the early 90s with John Acquaviva, his Plus8 label turned into Minus in 1998 with the ethos that less is more. After what the English-born legend and his allies create tonight, you’d struggle to argue against.
cutting us down to size with a bare beat.
Tonight’s 9.30 to 6am stretch has been extended especially for Minus’ Manchester debut, and Hawtin’s longoverdue return to the city. It’s not until midnight that the music graduates from Barem’s humming warm-up, when Troy Pierce works in some incredible peaks, building over ten minute stretches before ruthlessly
But at 3am when the blonde boss emerges, his presence alone is enough to give you a second wind and you can feel the crowd getting it too; densely packed in the middle, dancers spill out into the bar area giving the warehouse a rare club feel. Sticking with his trademark that’s not quite as minimal as the rest of the
Next up is tantalisingly billed live show from Jon Gaiser. Exactly how live his set is we can’t easily tell. High up behind his laptops whilst vibrant white minus signs scroll across the stage front, the man seems to be hard at work, but it’s no real change of pace. His own ‘Nasty Girl’ adds a touch of familiarity at least.
www.myspace.com/ bikiniblack Paddy - 07919 537467 night Hawtin powers through techno that's robust, cold and driving. Moreover, it’s utterly mesmeric and danceable.
Key track: ‘Cold’ www.myspace.com/ thecities
Key track: ‘Revenge’ www.myspace.com/ thevonkemps
Key track: ‘Left’ Key track: ‘Meat Balloon’ www.pulledapartby horses.com James - 07986694842
www.myspace.com/ strangewaysmusic Sean - 07870587826
Another truly special night. Fran Donelly
listings OctGIGLISTINGS October Saturday 25th Up To The Rafters, Vib Gyor @ Night & Day Café Annie Mac Presents @ Warehouse Project Alphabeat @ Academy 2 The Jamm @ Academy 3 George Borowski & The Fabulous Wonderfuls @ Club Academy Beth Rowley @ RNCM
Sunday 26th The Datsuns @ Night & Day Café Tonight is Goodbye @ The Roadhouse The Mystery Jets @ Academy 3 Spunge @ Jilly’s Rockworld Allerjen @ Satans Hollow
Monday 27th Team Water Polo @ Night & Day Café Cheeky Cheeky & The Nosebleeds @ The Roadhouse M83 @ The Ruby Lounge The Unholy Alliance- Slayer, Trivium, Mastodon @ The M.E.N Arena Nitin Sawhney @ Academy 2 Noah & The Whale @ Academy 3 No Half Measures Tour feat The Holloways @ Club Academy My Emergency! @ Music Box
Tuesday 28th Marry Another @ Night & Day Café The Temptations @ The Apollo Chaka Khan @ The Bridgewater Hall The Bronx @ Club Academy
Wednesday 29th The Sadies @ Night & Day Café Jersey Budd @ The Roadhouse Colin Macintyre @ The Ruby Lounge The Walkmen @ Academy 3 Jonathan Coulton with Paul & Storm @ Club Academy
Thursday 30th Noasis @ The Ruby Lounge Bryan Adams @ The M.E.N Arena Elbow @ The Apollo Taste Of Chaos- Atreyu @ Academy 1 Dreadzone @ Academy 3 Francis Dunnery @ Club Academy
Friday 31st The Kabeedies @ Night & Day Café David R Black @ The Roadhouse Groove Armada @ Warehouse Project Katie Melua @ The M.E.N Arena Cascada @ The Apollo Kill Hannah @ Academy 2 Stop The Black Light @ Academy 3 The Black Seeds @ Club Academy
November Saturday 1st Carjack Mallone, Air Cav @ Night & Day Café
The Research @ The Roadhouse Exhibitionist @ Warehouse Project Babylon Fire @ The Ruby Lounge Hot Chip @ The Apollo Whole Lotta Led @ Academy 2 Ian McNabb @ Academy 3 Dirty Circus @ Club Academy
Sunday 2nd William Control @ The Roadhouse Hamell On Trial @ The Ruby Lounge Goldfrapp @ The Apollo Bring Me The Horizon @ Academy 2 Gabriella Cilmi @ Club Academy
Monday 3rd Al Green @ The M.E.N Arena Rancid @ Academy 1 Hanoi Rocks @ Academy 2 Ron Sexsmith @ Club Academy The Warriors @ Satans Hollow Julie Fowlers @ RNCM
Tuesday 4th Damien Jurado @ Night & Day Café August Burns Red @ The Roadhouse Micah P Hinson @ The Ruby Lounge Elliot Minor @ Academy 1 Dan Reed @ Academy 3 Anathema @ Club Academy Deaf Havana @ Music Box
Wednesday 5th Infadels @ The Roadhouse GLITCH presents DMX Krew @ The Ruby Lounge Now. Wave Presents- Underground Railroad @ Deaf Institute Queen & Paul Rodgers @ The M.E.N Arena Mercury Rev @ Academy 1 Adrian Edmondson & The Bad Shepherds @ Music Box
Thursday 6th Dark Captain Light Captain @ Night & Day Café Thomas Truax @ The Ruby Lounge Eastpak Antidote Tour 2008 @ Academy 1 Todd Rundgren @ Academy 2 The Aggrolites @ Academy 3 Cold War Kids @ The Ritz
Friday 7th Bestival Re-Union @ Warehouse Project The Stranglers @ Academy 1 Karma @ Academy 3 Cage The Elephant @ Club Academy Paul Heaton @ The Ritz Trash Fashion @ Dry Bar
Saturday 8th The Chibuku Party @ Warehouse Project Airbourne @ Academy 1 Seth Lakeman @ Academy 2 The Alarm @ Academy 3 Laura Marling @ Club Academy
Sunday 9th Neon Neon @ The Ruby Lounge Alter Bridge @ The Apollo Joe Bonamassa @ Academy 1 Fleet Foxes @ Academy 2
The Ruby Suns @ The Ruby Lounge Scouting For Girls @ The Apollo Cardinals feat Ryan Adams @ Academy 1 Soilwork @ Club Academy
Stephan Lynch @ Academy 1 Wednesday 13 @ Academy 2 Mugison @ Academy 3 Ida Maria @ Club Academy These Arms Are Snakes, Russian Circles @ Star & Garter
Night & Day 17th Birthday feat Stephen Fretwell @ Night & Day Café Plump DJ’s @ Warehouse Project Wolf Parade @ The Ruby Lounge Roisin Murphy @ Academy 1 Estelle @ Academy 2 Think Floyd @ Academy 3 Bad Manners @ Club Academy
Tuesday 11th The Bosshoss @ Night & Day Café Scouting For Girls @ The Apollo MGMT @ Academy 1 Altamont Never Say Die! @ Academy 2
Wednesday 12th The Rifles @ Academy 2 Midterm Break @ Music Box Tony Christie @ RNCM
Thursday 13th The Grammatics @ Night & Day Café King Kurt @ The Ruby Lounge An Evening With My Morning Jacket @ Academy 2 Never Forever @ Academy 3 Peter Bruntell, Michael Weston King @ Club Academy
Friday 14th Nick Connors @ Night & Day Café Cocoon @ Warehouse Project Motorhead @ The Apollo Marillion @ Academy 1 Kora @ Academy 2 Sham 69 @ Academy 3 Limehouse Lizzy @ Club Academy
Friday 21st The Lucid Dream @ Night & Day Café Cadenza Records Presents @ Warehouse Project Jools Holland @ The Apollo New Found Glory @ Academy 1 The Whip @ Academy 2 Sara Bareilles @ Academy 3 Kieran Hebden & Steve Reid @ Club Academy
Saturday 22nd Ape Presents Beatdown @ Warehouse Project 101% Pantera @ The Ruby Lounge McFly @ The M.E.N Arena Thunder @ Academy 1 The Alarm @ Academy 3 Flipron & Mistys Big Adventure @ Club Academy
Sunday 23rd Will Young @ The Apollo Opeth @ Academy 1 Steve Forbert @ Academy 3 Anberlin @ Club Academy
Goodgrief 8th Birthday @ Warehouse Project Fat Freddys Drop @ Academy 1 Hey @ Academy 2 The Alarm @ Academy 3 The Addiction @ Club Academy
I’m From Barcelona @ The Ruby Lounge Will Young @ The Apollo Ladytron @ Academy 2 My American Heart @ Academy 3 Tony Hadley @ The Bridgewater Hall Dividing The Line @ Satans Hollow
Bullet For My Valentine @ The Apollo Less Than Jake @ Academy 1 Taio Cruz @ Academy 2 Paul Gilbert @ Club Academy John Martyn @ The Lowry
Bad For Lazarus @ Night & Day Café Working For a Nuclear Free City @ The Ruby Lounge Cliff Richard @ The M.E.N Arena Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds @ The Apollo The Fratellis @ Academy 1 Gary Louris & Mark Olson (The Jayhawks) @ Academy 2 Go: Audio @ Club Academy
James Yorkston @ Night & Day Café Kanye West @ The M.E.N Arena The Feeling @ The Apollo Jackson United @ Academy 3 Hayley Westenra @ The Bridgewater Hall Wednesday 26th The Stills @ Night & Day Café Cliff Richard @ The M.E.N Arena Tuesday 18th Youthmovies, Adam Gnade, Cats In Paris The Script @ Academy 1 Boo Hewerdine @ Academy 3 @ Night & Day Café Paul Weller @ The M.E.N Arena Extreme @ Academy 1 Uriah Heep @ Academy 2 The Notwist @ Academy 3 Low @ Club Academy
Wednesday 19th Fucked Up @ The Roadhouse Now. Wave Presents- Jay Reatard @ Deaf Institute Gavin Degraw @ Academy 2 The Faint @ Academy 3 MexicoFALLZ @ Music Box
Thursday 27th Night & Day 17th Birthday feat John Bramwell @ Night & Day Café Simple Minds @ The M.E.N Arena Runrig @ The Apollo Failsafe @ Satans Hollow
Saturday 29th Night & Day 17th Birthday feat Delphic @ Night & Day Café Attack Attack @ The Roadhouse Erol and Friends @ Warehouse Project Bauer @ The Ruby Lounge Duffy @ The Apollo The Complete Stone Roses @ Academy 1 Carjack Mallone @ Academy 2 Ezio @ Academy 3 Show of Hands with Miranda Sykes @ Club Academy
Popscene @ The Brickhouse 10.30pm2.30am Relief @ Club Alter Ego 11pm- 4am Another Planet @ South 10pm- 3am Homoelectric @ Legends 10pm- 4am Twist and Shout @ The Venue 10pm3am Don’t Miss This @ Retro Bar Guilty Pleasures @ One Central Street 10pm- 3am Club Clique @ Mint Lounge Dirty Tourism presents Bigger Than Jesus (last Fri p/m) @ Joshua Brooks Locked (2nd fri p/m) @ Joshua Brooks Audio Salad (3rd fri p/m) @ Joshua Brooks
Sunday 30th Leonard Cohen @ The M.E.N Arena Duffy @ The Apollo Looking Rough at 30- Jarvis Cocker @ Academy 1 Zucchero @ Academy 2 Numania 2008 @ Academy 3
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Monday Revolver @ The Roadhouse 11pm- 2am Monday @ The Ritz 10pm- 2am Up The Racket @ Joshua Brooks 10pm2am
Tuesday Sex With Robots @ The Roadhouse 11pm- late Way Back When @ Po Na Na 9pm- 2am Click Click @ Font Bar 9pm- 1am The Alternative @ The Venue 11pm- late
Wednesday Retro @ 42nd Street 10pm- late Klub Knowhere (3rd p/m) @ Joshua Brooks 10pm-2.30am Tramp @ Club North 10pm- 2am
Thursday From Manchester With Love @ 42nd Street 10pm- 2am Don’t Think Twice… @ Font Bar 9pm1am Romp @ One Central Street @ 9.30pm3am In The City @ The Venue 11pm- late Risky Business @ Joshua Brooks
Friday Long Live Rock ‘n’ Roll @ The Roadhouse Friday Feeling @ 5th Avenue 10pm- 3am Keys, Money, Lipstick @ Star & Garter Glamorous Indie Rock n’ Roll @ 42nd Street
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Bill _Drum _mond “All recorded music has run its course,” begins the new book from Bill Drummond, “It has all been consumed, traded, downloaded, understood, heard before, sampled, learned, revived, judged and found wanting.” Founding member of The KLF, ex-manager of Echo and The Bunnymen, and the man who inflamed more than just paper when he burnt one million pounds in 1994, Drummond has now washed his hands both of nostalgia, and the shackles of melody, notation, even lyrics. Inspired by the sound of his Land Rover, in 2003, he vowed only to listen to music beginning with one letter of the alphabet every year for 26 years, and his quest to reinvent music continued with a series of ‘scores’ inspiring instinctive responses from a choir of untrained singers. As soon as the recording has been made, he deletes the files.
Coming from a man who planned on cutting off his own hand during the 1992 Brit Awards, it all seems pretty logical, but HV met Drummond to separate the midlife crisis from the madness. Do you think this has come from an overexposure to recorded music? Obviously, there’s still going to be recorded music. It’s not going to disappear, but it’s not going to have that central place. For the past almost 50 years it’s been so important for each generation growing up that, to begin with, I thought ‘maybe it’s just a personal thing, maybe it’s an age thing, or the fact that I’ve gone through the things I’ve gone through’ but then I noticed my 13 year old daughter’s relationship with her iPod; she would download hundreds of tracks and just flick through them. It really doesn’t mean anything. Even when you’re at that stage in life, just getting into music, it’s almost irrelevant. When you’ve restricted yourself to bands only beginning with the letter B, for example, do you get the urge to listen to high-profile releases such as In Rainbows or The Seldom Seen Kid?
That one letter thing didn’t really work in re-engaging me with music. If I was to hear the Elbow album, and this might sound terrible, I know that I’d just hear this thing that sounds like it was from the 20th century. At the end of the day it’s recorded music. It’s like looking at pottery. You can reinvent pottery but it’s still pottery. Or mosaic, even if it’s very good mosaic, it’s still just mosaic. It’s from another era, like a music hall act. So in 50 years time, will we have taken everything back to live vocal performance? Oh no, not at all. I’m not saying The 17 is the future of rock’n’roll. It’s my way, as a bloke in my mid-50s, to re-engage with music. There’s also going to be 19, 20 year olds out there wanting to make music and they’re not going to want to make stuff that people just skip through on their iPod, or just have in the background; they’re going to want to make something important and vital that really captures people’s imaginations. Sticking with the old formula of the album isn’t the way to capture people’s imaginations, not in a great way, making a statement about where we are in our culture. Even if you win the Mercury Prize, there was a
Mercury Prize last year and there will be another one next year. Why is deleting the recordings so important? The music that I’m doing with The 17 wouldn’t stand up to be listened to over and over again. You have to be there, that’s the important thing. Part of what gives music its power is the occasion, the event, and what it’s celebrating becomes part of it. Members of The 17 can’t help but put something of themselves into it. One of the things about recorded music, as it evolved through the 20th century, was it had to be music that people could listen to and listen to and listen to and never get bored of, but this works as a one-off event that you’re actually part of. If you had it on a CD or iPod, you’d just go ‘what the fuck’s that?’ 17 is out now from Beautiful Books, or you can visit www.the17.org to download the scores. Megan Vaughan.
Published on Jan 7, 2010
Manchester's High Voltage magazine issue 31. Featuring The Walkmen, Metronomy, Fujiya & Miyagi, The Spinto Band, Cut Copy, Hercules & Love A...