FOR THE REST OF US
/ ABOUT Who’s Jack Magazine is part of a range of platforms that all come under the company Who’s Jack Ltd. This is the magazine and it is a monthly glossy both in print and online that covers art, fashion, film, music and general London and life. We aim to be attainable just as much as we are aspirational and never to talk down to our reader, you. We are what you’ve been waiting for. Jack Loves You More.
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/ FROM JACK
So, it’s March which means it’s officially OK to start making summer plans and here at Jack HQ the chat this month has turned towards festival season. All the best festivals have already released their line ups and so we’ve begun to make our tick list of those we want to attend the most. Currently sitting at the top of our ‘most want to go to’ list is Rockness (Cribs and Two Door Cinema Club) and V Festival (Eminem, Rihanna, Arctic Monkeys = our idea of a good line up). Festival excitement aside this month we’ve also been busy catching up with the slightly nuts but highly interesting beat boxer-come-singer-come-comedian, Beadyman who has recently been occupied making something very exciting for us and Jack TV... more news on that soon. Also this month we’ve added in a new jobs section to Pick of the Month to help all of you who are looking for a change of job or those of you who have found yourself without one. So whether you want to work in music, fashion or art, Who’s Jack have it covered. Lastly this month the office has been buzzing with talk of the new Lady Gaga video for her single, Born This Way, which seems to feature some very similar imagery to the Fu-gyptology fashion shoot that was in our February issue. If you don’t know what we’re talking about pop the video on Youtube and head to whosjack.org to read last months issue. Before I leave you there’s just enough time to let you know that we’ve also added some new stockists to our belt so flip over to the stockists page to find out where you can pick up this and future issues of Who’s Jack. Enjoy. Lu x
/ ISSUE 46 . MAR / 2011 FASHION
8. Fashion For The Boys James, our favourite manly fashion man talks desert boots. 11. Meglomainiac Creams and blacks and always movment. 18. Leila Loves House of Sunny, Icon Brand. 22. The Rules of Unity Casual staples for the boys. 31. Old Master Style Colour, colour and colour. 32. Colour Block It’s here to stay, and it’s bright. 39. The Josh Beech Effect The man all the cool brands want. 40. Do it Yourself Ella goes money saving and finds ways of sticking with the trends by hand. 41. Corrine Day The first of our Degrees of Seperation pieces. 44. Fashion Pick of The Month
46. Music Review One Liners and Lesser Knowns James and Matt talk new bands, good bands and bad bands. 47. Beardy Man Our cover star tells us why technology can’t keep up with him. 51. Rory’s Band Picks The best of who we are watching, insider knowledge that we’re putting out there. 52. Man Like Me The boys we interviewed back in Feb 09 fill us in on what we’ve missed. 54. Music Pick of The Month
ART & DESIGN 3
56. DVD’s and 10 Films With.. This month it’s a look at 10 films showcasing scary bitches (mental women). 57. Mark’s March Film Round Up The films you want to spend your money on this month. 59. Drugs In Film Mark takes a toddle through the different attitudes to drugs in film throughout the years. 62. World Cinema The best of what’s coming from where. 64. Film Pick of The Month
LIFE & LONDON 74. A Generation Throwing It’s Toys From The Pram? To riot or not to riot, that is the question. 80. Beauty Luke, our favourite make up artist tells us what’s new. 81. Dating This time it’s pizza partners Georgina is finding. 82. Shit Lit Adam reviews ‘How I Became A Famous Novelist’. 83. Life and London Pick Of The Month
66. High Society A look at drugs in the arts. 69. Art Spotter South London Art Map. 70. Artist Introductions Joram Roukes. 72. Art Pick of The Month
/ TEAM JACK / CONTRIBUTORS
Editor : Louise O-F email@example.com
Dept Editor : Laura Hills firstname.lastname@example.org
Film : Mark Williams email@example.com
Illustrator: Avril Kelly
Fashion: Terry James Lynch firstname.lastname@example.org
Comment : Adam Roan Henderson email@example.com
Music : James Lynch firstname.lastname@example.org
Film online : Matt Hamm email@example.com
Photographer: Harriet Turney
Stylist: Natalie Dale
Dating : Georgina Childs
Make Up: Luke Stephens
Photographer : Jay Mclaughlin firstname.lastname@example.org
Styling : Faye Heran email@example.com
Fashion: Ella Davidson
Styling : Jo Bevis firstname.lastname@example.org
Music: Rory Broadfoot
Illustration : Elliott Rooney
Photographer : Lynsey Grave
Model and art director : April Alexander
Illustrator : Anna Stiles
Art : Maria Howard
Photographer : Tom Bunning
Photographer: Rob jarvis
Photographer: Daniel Thomas Smith
Further Contributing writers : Donna Marie Howard // Katie Service // Eleanor Davidson // Katerina Pantelides Illustrations/Artwork/Layout : LOF // pandamilk : www.pandamilk.co.uk // Anne-Sophie Rosenvinge-Skov // Katie Allen // Cover Image : Felix Cooper // Want to see your work in Jack? Contributions : email@example.com The Jack-Father : Edward Fitzpatrick // Who’s Jack Ltd All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced in whole or in part with out the permission of Who’s Jack. The opinions expressed in this magazine are not necessarily the opinions of Who’s Jack. Who’s Jack Ltd can not be held responsible for any breach of copyright arising from any material supplied. Who’s Jack, 93 Barker Drive, Camden, London, NW1 0JG
jack / STOCKISTS NORTH
Camden Blues Kitchen: 111 - 113 Camden High Street, NW1 7JN www.theblueskitchen.com The Old Queens Head: 44 Essex Road, Islington, N1 8LN www.theoldqueenshead.com The Hawley Arms: 2 Castlehaven Road, NW1 8QU www.thehawleyarms.co.uk The Lexington: 96-98 Pentonville Road, N1 9JB www.thelexington.co.uk The Keston Lodge: 131 Upper Street, N1 1QP www.kestonlodge.com The Lock Tavern: 35 Chalk Farm Road, NW1 8AJ www.lock-tavern.co.uk Shock and Soul: 46 Essex Road, Islington, N1 8LN www.shockandsoul.co.uk The Westbury: 34 Kilburn High Street, NW6 5UA www.westburybar.com Rokit: 225 Camden HIgh Street, NW1 7BU www.rokit.co.uk LCB Surf Store : 23 Chalk Farm Road, NW1 7RU www.lcbsurfstore.co.uk Edinboro Castle: 57 Mornington Terrace, NW1 7RU www.edinborocastlepub.co.uk Joy: 21-22 Upper Street, N1 0PQ www.joythestore.com
Rough Trade: 130 Talbot Road, W11 1JA www.roughtrade.com The Electric Brasserie: 191 Portobello Road, W11 2ED www.electricbrasserie.com Mau Mau Bar: 265 Portobello Road, W11 1LR www.myspace.com/maumaubar Portobello Music: 13 Allsaints Road, W11 1HA www.portobellomusic.net Smash: 268 Portobello Road www.sandmcafe.co.uk Defectors Weld : 170 Uxbridge Road, W12 8AA www.defectors-weld.com Size? - (in London stores): 200 Portobello Road, Notting Hill, W11 1LB www.size.co.uk
SOUTH Bar Story: 213 Blenheim Grove, Peckham, SE15 4QL Bullfrog: 20 Greenwich Church Street, SE10 9BJ www.bullfrogs.co.uk The Rest Is Noise: 442 Brixton Road, Brixton, SW9 8EJ www.therestisnoisebrixton.com Joy: Clapham Junction Station, SW11 1RU www.joythestore.com Banquet Records: 52 Eden Street, Kingston, KT1 1EE www.banquetrecords.com
EAST Paper Dress: 114-116 Curtain Road, EC2A 3AY www.paperdressboutique.blogspot.com Vintage Store: 182 Brick Lane, E1 6SA The Lazy Ones: 102m Sclater Street, E1 6HR www.thelazyones.blogspot.com Beyond Retro: 110-112 Cheshire Street, E2 6EJ 58-59 Great Marlborough Street, W1F 7JY www.beyondretro.com The Book Club: 100 Lenard Street, EC2A 4RH www.wearetbc.com Beyond Retro: 110-112 Cheshire Street, E2 6EJ 58-59 Great Marlborough Street, W1F 7JY www.beyondretro.com Behave: 14 Hanbury Street, E1 6QR LCB Surf Store: 121 Bethnal Green Road, London E2 7DG www.lcbsurfstore.co.uk Rough Trade East: Old Truman Brewery, 91 Brick Lane, E1 6QL www.roughtrade.com The Victoria: 110 Grove Road, Mile End, E3 5TH www.thevictoriae3.com Junk: Old Truman Brewery, Grey Eagle Street, E1 6QL Elbow Rooms: 97-113 Curtain Road, EC2A 3BS theelbowroom.co.uk Bar Music Hall: 134 Curtain Road, EC2A 3AR www.barmusichall.co.uk Rokit: 101 Brick Lane, E1 6SE www.rokit.co.uk Rough Trade: Old Truman Brewery, Grey Eagle Street, E1 6QL www.roughtrade.com Absolute Vintage: 15 Hanbury Street, E1 6QR www.absolutevintage.co.uk GShock Shop: Old Truman Brewery, Grey Eagle Street, E1 6QL www.g-shock.co.uk Smiths of Smithfield: 67-77 Charterhouse Street, EC1M 6HJ www.smithsofsmithfield.co.uk (weekends only)
CENTRAL Beyond the Valley: 2 Newburgh Street, W1F 7RD www.beyondthevalley.com 55 DSL: 10A Newburgh St, W1F 7RN www.55dsl.com Chateau Roux: 17 Newburgh Street, W1F 7RZ www.chateauroux.co.uk Tatty Devine: 44 Monmouth Street, WC2H 9EP www.tattydevine.com The Sun and 13 Cantons: 21 Great Pulteney Street, W1F 9NG Candy Cakes: Monmouth Street, WC2H 9EP www.candycakes.com Size? - (in London stores): Carnaby Street, Soho, W1F 7DW www.size.co.uk Size? - (in London stores): 37a Neal Street, Covent Garden, WC2H 9PR www.size.co.uk Fopp: 1 Earlham Street, WC2H 9LL www.foppreturns.com Mint: 20 Earlham Street, WC2 H9LN www.mintvintage.co.uk Sanctum Hotel: 20 Warwick Street Soho, W1B 5NF www.sanctumsoho.com The Hospital Club: 24 Endell Street, London, WC2H 9HQ www.thehospitalclub.com Beyond Retro: 58-59 Great Malborough Street, W1F 7JY www.beyondretro.com Sanctum Hotel: 20 Warwick Street, W1B 5NF www.sanctumsoho.com Joy: 1620170 Wardour Street, W1F8AB www.joythestore.com Volcom: 7 Earlham Street, WC2 9LL www.volcom.com Joy: 11 The Market Building, Covent Garden www.joythestore.com Rokit: 42 Shelton Street, WC2 9HZ www.rokit.co.uk Wesc: 53 Neal Street, WC2H 9PR wesc.com Miyson: 3 Lowndes Court, off Carnaby, W1F 7HD www.miyson.com
Also with online orders of Urban Outfitters : www.urbanoutfitters.co.uk See an up to the minute list of stockists online, if you would like to stock Whoâ€™s Jack contact: firstname.lastname@example.org All stockists have magazines delivered once a month in the first week of each month. We would advise getting to stockists early as they go quick.
Photo: Vincent Skoglund
PLATTAN AUBERGINE Models: TANTO MEDIS
Available in 12 colors:
Feature 3.5mm standard microphone and remote.
FASHION FOR THE BOYS
Not suited but always desert booted. James tells you what to wear on your manly feet that uphold tradition yet bridge that cavernous gap between smart and casual, office and pub.
I don’t mean to sound sexist here but we all know that women love shoes. It’s a fact of life, proven by science and further explored in hard-hitting documentaries like Sex In The City. But here’s the shocker: everyone can like shoes. I do and other men do and so should you because good shoes are always better than no shoes and having two pairs of shoes is far greater than having only one (like some men I am ashamed to know). However, why stop at shoes? What about your hairy ankles gents? Well, let me introduce you to the joy of the boot. It’s not just any boot we are going to explore either, this is the desert boot, just the name alone conjures up images of hot and sweaty, muscled young men fighting their way through the Sahara in the name of freedom and in a completely nonhomoerotic way. This booty bastion of manliness has been hugging the sweaty feet of men since the days of world War II, they even found their way onto your Dads feet when he was in the dole queue claiming young upstart with a stupid haircut and a penchant for double denim way back in the 70s before you even existed. It’s easy to see why the desert boot is a genuine timeless classic, with comfortable suede sides hugging your feet and gum soles for your sneaking pleasure, they are so enjoyable and easy to wear it makes me wonder why we bother with anything else, ever. However, the joys of the desert boot are practical as well as aesthetic. Desert boots manage to complete the enviable
job of bridging the gap between smart and casual dressing, making it a lot easier to leave work for a midweek drink and arouse no suspicion as to why you are asleep at your desk the next day. Desert boots can be stealthily worn with smart indigo jeans or chinos and shirts for the office (albeit an office with a lenient dress code) but can be teamed with a traffic cone, wedgie and a bra that you have managed to ‘borrow’, when you are out for a cheeky Wednesday evening! The best shades to go for when considering your Desert boots are browns or the classic beige, although be warned, the beige/cream variety get dirty extremely quickly. In fact all colours do as they are mainly suede so I would definitely invest in some suede protector spray and even a brush if you want to keep them spotless, although a nice pair of battered and worn boots is always a strong look. Somewhat unsurprisingly the best brand to go for are Clarks Originals, although they will set you back a fair whack at £75, they aren’t called ‘originals’ for nothing. On the high street Office have a great range and even do the rather interesting black suede and black leather combo you can see in my manly styled picture. Further down the pecking order and even H&M have got themselves involved and are selling pairs for £30 but you can find them even cheaper if you brave the dark and twisting alleyways of East London. Of course, for that you might need some comfortable little boots…
Me GLo Ma INIac. Art & Fashion Direction: April Alexander Photographer: Mike Blackett www.mikeblackett.com Fashion Stylist: Rachel Anthony-Stylist www.rachel-anthony.com Hair Stylist: Angela Plummer www.angelaplummer.com Make- up Artist: Valerie Saint- Amand Using black| Up Cosmetics Paris www.vsaintamand.book.fr Model: April @ Krush Model Management NY Retoucher: Monica Chamorro www.monicachamorro.com
Leila Loves Leila Hartley
House of Sunny Young designers don’t have it easy these days. To design and produce a collection is hard enough with no budget, then there’s costly promotion and marketing in an already hugely saturated field. It’s no surprise then, that up-and-coming designers are going solo. Sunny Williams is one of these; or as he sees himself, ‘I’m not like everyone else; I don’t wanna ball around like everyone else’ (The Kinks, 1969) - he’s taking control of his future in fashion instead of just waiting for it to happen. It seems to be working. Sunny’s first ever show attracted a news worth queue of well over a hundred spectators and over filled the capacity of Punk in Soho (including, one suspects, a few gatecrashers, but what’s a party without them). After graduating, Sunny trained on Savile Row and at New Power Studio before opening his own fashion house, the House of Sunny. His AW/11 collection mixes 50s influenced tailoring (my favourite pieces) with cutsie flower embellished dresses and ultra short shorts and minis. Lace and leather is combined with silk, tweed and suede in Sunny’s dressing up box. Garments in animal print, tie dye, pinks and browns are distressed using novel and innovative techniques to give them a sense of tough love, namely being run over and shot at. The whole collection evokes Sunny’s passionate and eclectic personality. This is his radical tale, welcome to it. images: Rob Jarvis www.houseofsunny.com
Icon Brand This spring, yet another exciting Australian label is coming to our shores. Icon Brand have been around since the glory days of the 1970s when a little studio sprang up in Byron Bay producing hand made menâ€™s jewellery. Now with offices all over the world, Icon stick by their original ethos and still hand make their accessories using rubber moulds and metal castings. The brand has now expanded to all menswear accessories, including hats, belts, silk scarves and wallets but our favorite are the pendants. Icon mix found objects with metal mouldings to create kitch-but-cool necklaces. You could have a carton of chips dangling from you neck, or for a slightly harder look, a gun or fighter jet, or for the musos out there, a harmonica or whistle. Check the website for stockist information. www.iconbrand.blogspot.com
! N I W
shall r a M New phones Head
Marshall are the best at amps so why not be the best at headphones too? They are starting with a pretty impressive offering with these ultra padded, fold up really small, slick as hell black numbers made for durability so they shouldnt fall apart or sputter when they get hot and overused. So confident are Marshall in the durability of these headphones that they come with a one year premium replacement warranty. The headband exterior is made from the same vinyl as Marshall amps and has the same texture for all you music/amp geeks out there. For anyone that doesnâ€™t know what I am talking about they basically have a really nice textured headband to them. To win be the first to email us at email@example.com with the reason why you need the headphones.
THE RULES OF UNITY PHOTOGRAPHER : HARRIET TURNEY STYLIST : GILLY TURNEY MODEL : ROBIN AT MODELS ONE WITH THANKS TO SAINT CHRISTOPHERS INN
STOCKISTS Beyond Retro www.beyondretro.com River Island 020 89914904 New Look www.newlook.com Top Man 0845 121 4519 / topman.com Uniqlo 0207 290 8090 / www.uniqlo.co.uk
White cable knit crew neck sweater ÂŁ39.99 River Island
Tan cotton flat pocket shirt £30, grey denim shirt £30, khaki skinny trousers, £36, all from a selection, Top Man.
Burgundy jacket £39.99, shirt £29.99, both River Island, tweed skinny trousers £36, sizes 26-38, brown leather belt £14, both Top Man.
Harris Tweed jacket £120, natural cotton shirt £28, khaki knitted cardigan, £40, tweed trousers £36, Top Man.
Cream V-neck fine knit ÂŁ14.99, New Look, grey ribbed heat tech leggings, ÂŁ9.99, Uniqlo.
White cable knit crew neck sweater £39.99, River Island, tan skinny trousers, £36, Top Man.
Grey military top £12.99, New Look, navy check wool trousers £39.99, River Island, vintage belt, from £12, Beyond Retro
OLD MASTER STYLE S/S ’11 Colouring in Summer
Yellow Silk Dress, £2,148 Michael Kors SS11
How to wear it like the oldies. Masaccio The Distribution of Alms and the Death of Ananias 1426-27
words : Mimi Howard
hey call it jewel brights, I call it disciple chic. So, once again the spring/summer catwalks have been flooded with colour and once again the requisite amount of sunlight needed in order to wear these gorgeous frocks will be limited to oh, about two weeks. But if you’re anything like me and you’ve just bought something new, you’ll damn well wear it, whatever the weather. For the inevitable grey days of our english summer I recommend small amounts of block colour, leave the head to toe look for warmer climes. The key to this trend is most definitely a tan and for years now we’ve been hearing about how maxi dresses have become the ultimate post-beach uniform so if you’re off to the tropics buy colour and buy it long. Make like St Peter and go barefoot or slip on some Jesus sandals but keep it Biblical (plain) and let the colour be the focus.
If you’re not going anywhere until at least June, use sparingly. There are loads of birds of paradise colours around in manageable bite size chunks; from electric blue shoes to canary yellow coats, the high street has it covered. If you’re still stuck on minimal and refuse to bow down to colour, you can channel the best bits of the catwalk, longer hemlines and silk, in this Poltock & Walsh for ASOS number.
Blue and Yellow Heels Carvela Album Contrast Courts £95
Grey, White and Black Silk Maxi Dress Poltock & Walsh for ASOS, £190
Bright Tropical Maxi Dress, River Island SS, coming soon.
The bright red ‘Ethel’ from Village Hats. www.hatsandcaps.co.uk
COLOUR BLOCK Photographer: Daniel Thomas Smith, www.danielthomassmith.com Stylist: Natalie Dale, www.stylistnataliedale.co.uk Make-up and hair: Elizabeth Hsieh, www.truthbeauty.co.uk Model: Victoria K-C @ Profile
Red skirt, Rokit, £10, www.rokit.co.uk Blue dress (worn as top) Boohoo, £20, www.boohoo.com Necklace, Urban Outfitters, £28, www.urbanoutfitters.co.uk Scarf, stylist’s own
Blue shirt, Rokit, £25, www.rokit.co.uk Orange skirt, Urban Outfitters, £30, www.urbanoutfitters.co.uk Purple shoes, Boohoo, £20, www.boohoo.com Hair band, American Apparel, £4, www.americanapparel.net
Pink dress, Rokit, £25, www.rokit.co.uk Scarf, Urban Outfitters, £22, www.urbanoutfitters.co.uk Bracelet, CC Skye, £110, www.oxygenboutique.com
White skirt, American Apparel, £40, www.americanapparel.net Yellow jumper, Rokit, £16, www.rokit.co.uk Scarf, stylist’s own / Shoes, stylist’s own
Green playsuit (worn as shorts), Topshop, £26, www.topshop.com Yellow shirt, Rokit, £10, www.rokit.co.uk Headband, American Apparel, £15, www.americanapparel.net
Green skirt, Rokit, £20, www.rokit.co.uk Peach shirt, American Apparel, £36, www.americanapparel.net Bronze headband, American Apparel, £4, www.americanapparel.net Belt, stylist’s own
The Beech Effect Is Josh Beech the guy you call when you want your brand to be cool?
He’s a musician, London boy and pretty jaw droppingly hot, yes, Josh Beech seems to be every ones idea of cool. It would seem that after Dazed and Confused introduced Josh in 2009 as one of the male models to watch that some of the biggest brands in the world sat around their big marketing meeting tables and unanimously decided that Josh Beech was indeed, the epitome of cool, a cool that would sell their brands. Since then Josh has seen advertising modeling roles flow in his direction from brands that were getting a little stale and desperately needed to regain their edge. And in a young market dominated heavily by music who better than the tattoo covered, emo earring wearing, musician come model Josh to provide this edge? Seems simple. Born in Biggin Hill, London, Josh’s first love was music rather than getting his lovely chest out modeling. He started playing the keyboard at the tender age of ten (no doubt before he gained his healthy love of tattoos) and the guitar at 13. When he left school Josh gained a place on an apprenticeship at Tanglewood guitar makers so it would appear that his original calling was guitar related rather than to be the ultimate brand ambassador of cool. Later he started a cover band called Cacophony as well as a band called Snish who went so far as to release an album back in 2009. Josh found his true calling however at a festival in Shoreditch where he was scouted by Models 1, home also to the likes of Amber Le Bon and Rosie Huntington-Whitely, it was this and his subsequent first signing for Burberry that catapulted guitar loving, singing Beech into Cool St. So what generally happens when Josh Beech is booked to front an ad campaign for a high street brand? Well, it grabs our attention, here is an old style rock and roll looking boy covered in tattoos and with a certain ‘je ne se qua’. The thing about Beech is that he has such a strong look and charisma that you can tell it’s him regardless of how he is styled meaning that his presence is unlike many plainer faced models who are often made to look totally different for each campaign they do. Marketers and stylists embrace Josh’s
look because they want their audience to buy into it. In short Josh has quickly become the go-to boy for an injection of cool for brands that have become tired and stale. So far Levis has had a great shake up with their Josh Beech campaign as have Full Circle who used him to charm a younger audience. Most recently Clarks Originals realised it was time to become associated with him knowing that by
linking the brand with music and cool this would directly lead to sales and that aspirational affect all advertising campaigns strive for. Josh screams out to the cool kids between 16-25 years old who have a bit of money and want to spend that money on music, clothes, drink and cigarettes, not to mention the fact that women in general can’t get enough of him. What a good find.
f l e s r u o Y t I o D If you are feeling uninspired by spring fashion this year and fancy a different way of solving that ’wardrobe of clothes and nothing to wear’ feeling, Who’s Jack may have a few suggestions. It seems in 2011 crocheting isn’t just for your Gran and designing and making your own clothes has made it out of the London College of Fashion and back into your home, so make the move and re-vamp, re-make or completely re-do your wardrobe.
Established in 2007 by a team of illustrators, the London Print Club provides a creative space for anyone to realise their screen print visions. Turn your designs into professionally crafted t-shirts, tote bags or canvases with the help of the London Print Club team: beginner’s workshops average around £40 for the day and once you know how to wield the equipment, you can become a member. Considering an average man’s t-shirt costs around £30, it makes sense to learn the trade, right? Their online store also houses an impressive selection of prints to purchase, definitely worth a browse if you are looking for some affordable artwork.
Ethical, innovative, informed and not a polyester twin-set in sight, what more could you want from a knitting experience? Prick Your Finger in Mile End offers a fun and wonderfully novel approach to everything wool: As well as selling home spun yarns and knitting patterns, Prick Your Finger offer three monthly knitting and crocheting classes and one-to-one lessons where beginners or experienced knitters can learn from founders and experts Louise and Rachael. Classes are taught in small, focused numbers, starting from £30. If, on the other hand, you are looking for something a little more informal, or free, I Knit, near Waterloo, run several knitting groups where you can meet, chat, and knit with the added comfort of their licensed bar or just check out the chaincreative.blogspot.com for some online jumper inspiration.
Presenting an assorted range of classes, from photography to ‘pimp my shoes’, silversmithing to interior design, The Papered Parlour in the centre of Clapham is the true HQ for anyone with creative or domestic goddess inclinations. What’s more, with all day dressmaking crash courses and ‘make a dress weekenders’, you can learn the essential skills to hand make unique, personal garments and save some future funds from the grasps of the high street.
words: Ella Davidson
Degrees of Separation : Ever sat and pondered the people that seem to effect everything? They filter through genres, through companies and through our day to day lives, affecting, changing, connecting. These are the people that we are looking at throughout this series aptly known as the Degrees of Separation, look out as the series moves from section to section profiling different people that have had a profound effect on the capital and beyond with a constant connection to the last. This month, Corinne Day.
illustration: Anna Stiles words : Ella Davidson
What is fashion anyway? Who, is deciding what here? How do I decide? Amongst the confusion all I know is when I flick through a magazine, and finally reach that golden editorial, I see fashion. Such is the power of the image, our concepts of beauty, style and body image are ultimately conditioned by the self-reflexive fashion spread. We all look to the venerated fashion shoot to aspire to, or adhere to a forged symbol of fashion ‘reality’; as while fashion photographers cast their inevitably subjective and beautiful spell and we cannot help but fall under its command. The late and truly seminal photographer Corinne Day was such a witch doctor, her outstanding body of work was intrinsic to the formation of the fashion visual in early ‘90s Britain and her legacy within the industry, and simply as a role model for aspiring photographers is undoubtedly worth recognition. Formerly a courier and a model, her first and only lessons in photography came from her lifetime partner Mark Szaszy. From this self taught heritage, unfettered by the fake apparel of high fashion, her unpretentious, unmediated and captivating documentary style
images developed. In an interview for Imperfect Beauty: The Making of Contemporary Fashion Photographs with Charlotte Cotton, Head Curator of Photography at the Victoria and Albert Museum at the time of the interview, Day solidified her attitude toward fashion photography: ‘I didn’t like the fake poses and phoney faces…Fashion magazines had been selling sex and glamour for far too long. I wanted to instill some reality into a world of fantasy’. Focusing on the representation of the ‘real’ and on a distinct degeneration or retreat from the glamour and polished aesthetic characterised in fashion photography in the 1980s, Day chose instead to look to her own engagement with youth culture when forming her photographic mantra. Through her eyes fashion was brought from its pedestal to a form of cultural property to which anyone can relate, access and readily achieve instead of merely aspire to. Like the images of photographers such as Nan Goldin, Larry Clark and Jeurgen Teller, Day endowed her models with individuality and personality, heightening the fashion photograph from a just portrayal of the latest trend. Her 1990 shoot ‘The Third Summer of Love’ presents such characteristics: each shot tells a story, Moss is pictured as more than a model but as an ‘authentic’ presence, blurring the distinction between the fashion photograph and the portrait, the documentary and the fashion shoot. Susan Bright, Head Curator of the
Face of Fashion at the National Portrait Gallery (2007) comments: ‘I think Corinne almost has to fall in love with her sitters a little bit to get the most out of them. She always says what she is trying to do is get an element of the presence of them’. As a photographer, Day’s legacy remembers her ability to inspire a sense of touchable reality into her images, advocating an idea of obtainable, personal style. Her images fed into and fuelled an alternative vision of fashion which encouraged the notion that beauty could be found in the every day, the ordinary and seemingly mundane, an inherent belief which she would explore later in photography projects such as Diary (2000), which provided an intimate and extraordinary look into the personal life of Day and her friends. Whilst the fashion photograph is often disregarded as merely a transitory and ephemeral counterpart to the fashion industry, itself criticised as being a superficial form of cultural commerce, Day’s intimate and realist approach to photography illustrated that fashion imagery is not only a means by which style is reflected and perpetuated, but also as an integral component in recording socio-cultural contemporary lives. Yes it works as a fashion photograph, but it also works as a portrait, as a window into a person, a time and a place, proving fashion photography need not be false. Corinne Day: 1965 - 2010 Next month: Corinne Day’s good friend and muse, Kate Moss
PICK OF THE MONTH
FASHION Granny Patterns
The FEIT Hiker X Ray Taking fashionable hiking boots to a new level are these boots from Feit. We are loving the shinyness (normally these things are all mat and suede leather and conker colouring) The Ox Blood coloured boot promises to last you right through the summer into the autumn. What’s more they have a pretty exciting transparent sole, which is where they get the name Hike X-Ray from.
Models Turn Photographers Campaigns are being handed to the models. No longer, it seems are the marketing agencies and stylists needed for fashion brand campaigns. New York Label, Rag and Bone, baby of Marcus Wainwright and David Nevelli have given models a selection of clothes and a camera and let them do what they think best with them for their most recent campaign. The campaign was suitably called the D-I-Y campaign and includes models Abby Lee Kershaw, Sasha Pivovarova, Lily Aldridge and Edita Vilkeviute. The girls were also given a video camera to document their decisions and journeys through the procedure of making up the campaign as they went along. On top of all this they were given tickets to travel through Sydney, Tennessee, Corsica and Jamaica to gain inspiration for their chosen images. At last we are finally seeing models treated as individuals in this campaign rather than faceless clothes horses, well done Rag and Bone. www.rag-bone.com
Yohji Yamamoto at The V&A Yohji Yamamoto comes to the V&A to exhibit for his first UK solo exhibition which will celebrate the life and work of the Japanese fashion designer. This installation-based retrospective consists of more than 80 garments. Each space occupied in Gallery 38, where the show is based, will take on it’s own meaning within the narrative of the exhibition which explores Yohji Yamamoto’s design world. The exhibition will include both women’s and menswear collections. 12 March - 10 July Cromwell Rd, London www.vam.ac.uk
Grannie pattern everything was storming the audiences at Fashion Week just gone and while at first we were pessimistic, we’re now coming around to the idea of dressing in what essentially looks like some curtains. Why not - it’s tough economic times, it’s probably a cheap option for brands to buy up ugly material that no one else wants and now we are buying it - in more ways than one! These granny patterns above can be found in Urban Outfitters, Topshop and River Island.
George Cox Creeper Boots One more boot for you following on from James’ boot piece a few pages back, the George Cox Creeper boot made for that shop we all love, Oki-Ni. Available in a wide selection of two tone colours you don’t have to wait long to get your hands on a pair of these bad boys. www.oki-ni.com
JOBS Press Office Internship Alexander McQueen Length of placement: minimum 3 months firstname.lastname@example.org. com Head of E-commerce Fashion/Retail Fast paced Highstreet fashion brand seeks an accomplished Head of E-commerce with a strong fashion e-commerce background and both creative and technical experience. email@example.com Showroom Assistant (unpaid) Nicole Farhi Majidig@nicolefarhi.com
Sally Hansen Salon Effects Nail Polish Strips For some time we have been hankering after the perfect out come of Minx Nails becoming increasingly upset that we can’t achieve the same results at home. The main problem with the brilliant Minx is that it costs around £30 and then only last a week. This is all why we’re super excited that beauty brand Sally Hansen has come up with a way for us all to do it at home. These nail coatings can be applied in the comfort of one’s own home by simply peeling off a protective layer then fitting and filing the nail. Even better they last for 10 days, way better than 7. They cost under £10 per set and will be available from this month. www.sallyhansen.co.uk
LESSER KNOWN MaTT Hamm
Grouplove : Despite their slightly hippy-ish name, this American five-some are anything but. With bashing drums and joyfully echoed male/female duo vocals; the guitar band is back. And with just a self titled 6 track EP to their name’s so far, we at Jack are very excited to hear more from these honey-hearted, sugar-coated Mouldy Peaches meet Black Kids lovers of indie-pop-rock. Download: Colours.
Lower Dens : Led by singer Jana Hunter, the first product of Devendra Banhart’s label Gnomonsong; Lower Dens come armed with a powerfully dark voice and deep versatility in her ever changing range of emotions. Think The xx minus the sexual tension, with a colourful mix of electric guitar, bass, and drums; that blend nicely with Hunter’s PJ Harvery esque tones. Download: Hospice Gates.
Alpines : Tag your band with a new genre of music, like Night Pop, and expect to be laughed out of any establishment But it kinda works for South London’s synthy duo Alpines. Feeding a La Roux sound into the mouths of Portishead and Zola Jesus, Catherine Pockson’s ethereal vocals rest comfortably on Matthews’ beautifully clanging keyboard beats. Download: Drive.
Slash Beautiful Dangerous (Feat. Fergie)
Take one fading rock God and inexplicably pair him with the one who looks most like a girl from the Black Eyed Peas (debatable I know) and you end up with this horrific mess of a song that starts out sounding like a female Britpop band from the late 90s, transforms into a Bon Jovi tribute act for the chorus and then has to make room for the obvious and overlong guitar solo, because really that is the only thing that Slash is famous for. www.slash.ultimate-guitar.com
Beady Eye Different Gear, Still Speeding
Apparently not happy to rest after creating some of the most generation-defining music of a career and then launching a well received clothing line, Liam ‘I’m a real man’ Gallagher still seems intent on destroying everything Oasis did, seemingly just to piss off his brother. And so Beady Eye was born and one record of uninspired lyricism and recycled blues riffs later will hopefully die, so we can all rest in peace. www.beadyeyemusic.com
Snoop Dogg That Good (Feat. Wiz Khalifa)
Snoop has always been one to advocate the positive side of drug abuse and it looks like he has found someone to puff, puff and pass the baton onto, so stepping through the smoke is hot young Philly thing Wiz Khalifa, who unleashes probably one of the most energetic verses ever to indulge a smoking habit, before lifting off into the ridiculous hook: ‘I’m smooking everywhere I goo… I alwaaays gotta keep one rolled…’ www.snoopdogg.com
Various Artists Rough Trade Counter Culture 10
The release of the latest installment in the Rough Trade Counter Culture series gives the cool kids and their haircuts at everyone’s favourite record shop a chance to tell us what we should be listening to over the coming months… so kind of like what I do but without the arrogant sarcasm and with a lot more quality music which is spread lovingly for you over two CDs, rather than contained within cold and bitter words. www.roughtrade.com
Magnetic Man Getting Nowhere (Feat. John Legend) (Yoruba Soul Remix)
Congratulations to Skream, Benga and Artwork for managing to land John Legend on the vocals for the original, but the real props are nicked by this Yoruba Soul remix, which manages to change the dark and foreboding atmosphere of the album track into something quite uplifting and joyous, harnessing the soul in Legends voice and teaming it with some crisp house claps and funky synths. It’s no banger but sometimes everybody just needs to chill the fuck out and enjoy things. www.magneticman.net
Sleigh Bells Rill Rill
This is quite a departure from the normally ear melting, raucous purveyors of Noise-Pop, Rill Rill is the standout track but still rather unexpected single from last years explosion of an album, Treats. But despite showing a rather softer side, Sleigh Bells still manage to dumbfound, twinning bizarre schoolgirl rhyme choruses with a quite brilliant sample, lifted from Funkadelic’s Can You Get To That… it shouldn’t work but it does, ever so well. www.myspace.com/sleighbellsmusic
words : Laura Hills | images : Barry Macdonald
As far as commitment to facial hair goes men don’t come much more dedicated than beatboxer, singer and producer Darren Foreman who loves his so much that he even penned his stage name after it. ‘I chose the name just before one of my first shows. I didn’t know what else to call myself and they needed a name for the event art work and that’s all I could come up with so I’m stuck with it,’ he tells me when we meet at a pub in Westbourne Park. After a shoot at Carter and Bond barbers (it seemed to appropriate a location not to) we grab a drink for a ‘quick’ chat which turns in to a two hour conversation, for Beardyman is a man with a lot to say, and rightfully so considering that he’s a man who has aced pretty much everything he’s put his mind to. Whether it’s beatboxing (he won the 2006 and 2007 UK Beatbox Championships and sat on the judging panel the year after), making an album (he’s already outselling Mona, Lykke Li, The Wombats and Miles Kane in the pre orders section with his album on Play.com) or writing a comedy show (more on that later) it seems that there isn’t a lot he can’t do.
‘Technology literally can’t keep up with him...’ ‘I guess I’d describe myself as a beatboxer who has veered far from beatboxing so that I can pursue some of my other wild musical ideas. I still use beatbox as a key component for the music I make but there’s lots of other elements to it now,’ says Beardyman. To give you some idea of how many other elements Beardyman is talking about we need to go back in time to a few years ago when, after seeing beatboxer Rahzel play live, Beardyman decided it was a career path he’d also like to follow. After succeeding in mastering that skill he moved on to perfecting his live shows and it was at this point that he came up with the idea for Battlejam, a club night which helped him explore his interest in music technology. Battlejam, which took place in Brighton, saw Beardyman, 2007 DMC champion turntablist JFB and a guest musician take part in a four hour jam which involved JFB live sampling both the guest musician and Beardyman. From time to time they also sampled the crowed either as individuals or en-mass to create a live song which would then be mixed in front of the audience. The nights proved to be a huge success and helped to propel Beardyman in to the public domain as
well as securing his love for creating music live. ‘I’m just about to go on tour and I plan to make an album every night. The album I’m just about to release took me a year to make so obviously they won’t be as polished as that one is but they’ll still be really good,’ explains Beardyman. ‘They will be full length albums of the live shows and people have to be there at the shows to see them being made. The audience will very much influence the type of music that is made and recorded.’ As anyone who’s ever been to a Beardyman gig will know he likes to cater for his audience by adapting his style to suit whatever event/venue/crowd he is playing to. ‘I’m very lucky because I’ve played lots of different types of show in the past which means I’m now at the point where I can pick and choose the best bits of those shows and put them in to my future performances. A good artist will always adapt their live show to suit the audience they’re playing to. For example when I play at a festival I know that the people watching will have lots of different musical preferences and so they’ll require quite a mixed show where everything’s very upbeat and dance focused. Whereas if I play a hip-hop show the audiences
‘My whole career has been an experiment.’ prefer a more controlled environment where they like to be encouraged to do the same hand actions,’ says Beardyman. ‘I get bored very easily so I normally like to make sure my live shows cover lots of different genres. I like to drag people through different genre experiences but to do that successfully I’ve got to be able to lead them through it. It’s a bit like making fusion food, everything has to go well together. For example, you wouldn’t serve up spring rolls with Spaghetti Bolognese but you might eat a spring roll and then Spaghetti Bolognese, as long as you leave a bit of time between courses. In other words I’ve had to learn what genres follow on well from each other in order to cleanse the audience’s musical palate.’ His eclectic live shows have gained Beardyman a reputation being well ahead of his musical game and other artists around at the moment. Before today’s interview I am speaking to one of his friends who explains to me, ‘technology literally can’t keep up with him. He’s always outgrowing existing equipment.’ This has caused Beardyman to create his own app which will allow him to push musical boundaries that current technology doesn’t allow. ‘My music’s got so much more complicated in recent years,’ he says. ‘It started off with just a loop pedal which after a while became pretty limiting so now I have a mad get up including a keyboard, extra effect pads, effect units and leap pads. It’s ridiculous. The problem is that even though I used the most up to date software to create my new album it still couldn’t do everything I needed it to so I’ve been forced to create something myself that can allow me to produce the music that I want to.’ It doesn’t take much time in his company to work out that Beardyman is a guy who likes to make people laugh. Constantly pulling different faces and twisting his expression in to shapes we never imagined possible during his photo shoot it isn’t hard to see why most of his music contains elements of humour. His upcoming album will also involve a comic element with impressions of Justin Bieber and a song in the style of Q-Tip that was so realistic that when we meet for this interview his lawyers were still working out if he was actually allowed to include it on the finished album. As many Beardyman fans will know in July 2009 he put on a comedy show at the Udderbelly on the South Bank called Beardyman’s Complete and Utter Shambles. The show saw him, his comedian brother (Jay
Foreman), JFB, visual artist mr_hopkinson, a guitarist and many others put on a theatrical music comedy show which embodied some of the elements of the previously mentioned Battlejam. The show was such a success that Beardyman has carried on to put on comedy shows around the country. ‘I really enjoy doing the comedy shows although I’m not sure how funny I am?,’ he laughs. ‘The comedy shows aren’t scripted at all, they’re all completely improvised. There’s a real gray area between music and comedy and I want to try and bridge that gap. I don’t see why I have to be just a musician or just a comedian, people can be both. We never quite know how the shows are going to work out, sometimes I do a bit of freestyle stuff but most of the time I’ll get the audience to give me a subject and a genre of music and I’ll make a song out of it which normally results in a few laughs. The whole time JFB is googling images that relate to the song and they appear behind me on a screen.’ This month will see Beardyman release his very first album the bizzarly named, I Done An Album. Before it’s 21st March release date he will be releasing a single, Where Does Your Mind Go, which at the time of our meet up he is still waiting to find out if it is going to be listed for radio play, however unlike other artists looking for their ‘big break’ Beardyman worries that radio play may ruin any chances he has of the album being a success. ‘At the moment I’m unsure if it will get listed but if it does I know I’m going get a flurry of hatred from people calling me a sell out,’ he says. The problem Beardyman is now facing is that after years of being a globally respected beatboxer he is now making the tricky transition in to the mainstream music industry where, for obvious reasons, his sound and style has had to change to accommodate a wider audience. ‘I just know there will be some mother fuckers out there who are going to say I’ve
cheated them and I’m not even sure that’ll be worth it but we’ll have to see. On one hand if I get listed for radio it’ll open me up to an enormous audience but on the other hand I think those new fans will end up being disappointed because the single that will be played on the radio isn’t like anything else on the album. If it doesn’t get play listed it’d probably do less damage to my career. Obviously when I made the single I thought it was a good track but I’ve heard it so many times now that I don’t like it anymore,’ he says. ‘I’ll be honest, I’m very fearful that anyone who has been a fan of mine up until now will misjudge the album based on the first single which really isn’t like the rest of the material on it.’ It is rare to hear an artist openly admit to being this worried but a quick look at the comments on the Where Does Your Brain Go video on Youtube and it appears that his worries may not be unfounded. Comments like, ‘he’s a brilliant beatboxer but this is poor’ and ‘WTF is this? There is no beatbox on this shit’ prove that there may be some people upset by his decision but, thankfully for him, for every negative comment there are ten others praising the song and showing their support for him. Despite the obviously more commercial sounding first single he promises that if people give the album a chance it shouldn’t disappoint. ‘It’s a very eclectic record,’ explains Beardyman. ‘It’s made up of pretty much all the two-step genres with a lot of break beat based music thrown in. There’s also some semi-spoof tracks on there added in for the humour element so in many ways it’ll resemble my live shows,’ he says. ‘I’m the first to admit that I could have made the album way more ‘out there’ but at the end of the day, I’ve made an album that I’m happy with and that I would choose to listen to. My whole career has been an experiment so I don’t see why the album should be any different. They say life isn’t a rehearsal but for me it kind of has been.’
‘I’m going get a flurry of hatred from people calling me a sell out.’
Rory’s Band Picks
(terrible title for a column.) words: Rory Broadfoot
MC Xander: Beat boxing used to be simple. It was that thing no one you knew could do but everyone would try and occasionally you would meet someone who could and would be suitably impressed as they sounded like they had a slightly rhythmic sore throat. And then people like Schlomo and Beardyman came along and it all changed. Suddenly thanks to kaos pads and loop pedals beat boxers weren’t just slightly distracting side shows anymore they were now one man orchestras and MC Xander is a great example of this. It would though be a huge disservice to suggest that he is just a beat boxer, be in no doubt that he is a musician of the highest order who just happens to only use his vocal cords which makes it all the more impressive. His debut album is out this week and it’s as beautiful a piece of work as a team of musicians’ and a bank of instruments could ever produce supported by, and here’s the key, proper actual meaningful lyrics. God knows how brilliant he’d be if he bothered to actually learn an instrument. www.myspace.com/mcxander
The Civil Wars: Sometimes it only takes you one second to fall in love with something. That first look from a girl that makes you’re heart thump from your chest, walking into your teams stadium for the first time and having the noise hit you or a song that makes you stop what you’re doing and just let it wash over you in wonder. The Civil Wars did that to me with a song, Poison and Wine. It’s quite simply jaw droppingly wonderful. As you would expect with a band made up of partners (The Civil Wars is made up of real life partners Joy Williams and John Paul White and no one else) each song sounds like an intimate conversation that you just happened to over hear. They are two people singing their hopes, their fears and their love to each other and they’ve invited us to listen in, so say thank you and be grateful that not only does love exist but sometimes it’s for sharing too. www.myspace.com/thecivilwars
If you were to belief the more reactionary tabloids then the youth of today are basically all (yes ALL of them) waiting outside your front door now to confuse you with txt speak and mug you and do you know what?.. I’m fine with that. I’m fine with a generation wasting away for the simple reason that it would stop them showing up how old I am. I’m hurtling with a rather unforgiving speed towards thirty and most of the time that’s fine, I have a good job, a collection of fine friends and a healthy stock of anecdotes but then some scamp like Misty Miller turns up and at sixteen starts to put out music so wonderful it makes me feel like I’ve achieved diddly squat with twice the time on the planet. But once I put my bitterness aside, I realised that with Misty Miller’s music I get to wallow in some truly lovely songs with some dryly wonderful lyrics that have a light-as-air-touch. I also get to remind myself that I can drive a mini bus and she can’t, small victories. www.mistymiller.com
Fashion. It can be a bit of a bugger sometimes. What seems like a good idea today is the photo you’re trying to hide from your kids ten years down the line as they scream ‘you wore WHAT?’ As a result I like to stick with my staples…pair of skinny jeans and a t – shirt, it never lets me down. Music’s the same. If you spend time chasing trends you’re only going to end up trying to hide half you’re music collection tens years down the line and as a result as much as I love to dip my toes in the warm pools of ‘edgy’ music I’ll never be far away from a simple singer/songwriter like William Fitizimons a writer of what can only be described as deeply personal folk hymns. Fitzimons writes the kind of songs that feel like he’s singing straight to you and is a reminder that styles come and go but that writing simple songs that touch people will always be on trend. www.myspace.com/williamfitzsimmons
Beans on Toast:
There are certain things that everyone can agree are awesome; dogs in hats, old people in love, being just the right side of drunk and beans on toast although not all at the same time obviously. As amazing as the first three are the last one is the real win and not just because it’s the one meal your mum made for you that you can legitimately make for yourself, but also because it’s the name of one of the most wonderfully esoteric musicians Britain has ever produced. Beans on Toast sings starkly bare songs that seem to contain the same chords over and over again but he stands on a chair when he performs, has released only one album that contained fifty tracks and writes songs that explore hooking up on MDMA, fancying Laura Marling and the wonder of peaches in Wandsworth. Just like his food name sake, it may be simple but you go back again and again because it’s brilliant. www.myspace.com/sexdrugspolitics
MAN LIKE ME Man Like Me are North London two-some Johnny Langer and Peter Duffy and the last time we spoke to them was in 2009 when they were on the brink of embarking on a pretty successful, all be it fairly underground, music career. At the time the band had been squashed in to that much-overused category of music, ‘nu-rave’ which also housed the likes of The Klaxons, Crystal Castles and Ou Est Le Swimming Pool however at their live shows there wasn’t a glow stick in sight and despite having electro-rave tinges, most of their songs relied more on humour than anything else. Fast forward to the present day and nu-rave, like many of the bands in the category, is long gone yet Man Like Me continue to be one of the most celebrated live bands in London, they’re also in the midst of planning new material, have just supported Madness on tour in Sheffield and, as many of you will probably have seen, starred in a TV advert for Ikea. We grabbed them for a catch up to talk new releases, their legendary live shows and how Suggs used to read Johnny bed time stories... words : Laura Hills | images : Tom Bunning
Unlike other duo acts Peter and Johnny are very much two halves of the same whole, with both of them taking on very similar roles in the band. ‘I’m a bit more of an odd jobs man but we work on every aspect of our music together,’ explains Peter. Together the two of them make music about London, single dad’s, parties, lad culture and are mostly frequently likened to the soon to be deceased band, The Streets. Despite being best known for their humour driven lyrics, funny dancing and partying hard at their shows they still have a soft side, not that it is likely to be revealed any time soon. ‘Although most of our songs are mainly about our antics and things we witness in day to day life I actually really like writing about love and relationships but we try and stay away from it because it’s what every band sings about,’ says Johnny. ‘Most of the love songs we’ve written are stored on my computer and on one will ever hear them. I’d love to make a smooth love record one day though so maybe one day we’ll release a romantic EP or something.’ Since Who’s Jack met with the band in 2009 they have been busy touring nonstop all over the world. From France to LA and back again there hasn’t really been an area, or a venue, that Man Like Me haven’t played. ‘We’ve been gigging solidly for the past two years. We’re in the middle of a tour now and it’s killing us because we’re so tired,’ says Johnny. ‘It’s a bit of an odd tour because everything we bring with us, including our equipment, can fit in to backpacks so we’re taking trains everywhere and staying in Travel Lodges. We’ve been staying in a different Travel Lodge every night and it’s getting to be a bit like Groundhog Day. I’ll go in to the bathroom to brush my teeth then realise I haven’t actually used that bathroom before,’ continues Peter. But it hasn’t all been Travel Lodges and train journeys, during the past two years Man Like Me have also released an album as well as the well received single, London Town, they’ve also playing some pretty weird venues. ‘Our record label is somehow linked with Eurostar so they got us to play shows on it on two different occasions,’ says Johnny. ‘The first time we did an acoustic set in the first class carriage to press which was cool and the second time we were in the normal carriage performing to passengers which was amusing to say the least. It was pretty random because we started playing as we were going in to the tunnel and I remember we were finishing our last song just as we were coming out of the other side, the light was breaking through the windows just as we were reaching the climax of our last song. That was a nice moment.’ As well as Eurostar trains Man Like Me have also played house parties all over the world, including one in LA which ended up with Peter hiding from gun shots behind a parked car. ‘The house was in the actual ghetto, there we cars bounding past on hydraulics, it was like something out of a Snoop Dogg video,’ says Johnny. ‘We started off playing in the house’s front yard but the police came
and shut it down so everyone bundled in to the living room. Hardly anyone there had heard of us but they got really in to the music which was cool,’ he continues. ‘I didn’t have the best time at that party,’ interrupts Peter. ‘Although I’d actually given up smoking weed someone offered me some and because we were in LA and we were in the hood I decided to go for it. The next thing I knew I felt the colour drain from my face and I began feeling really queasy and started freaking out. I ended up hiding behind a car for about an hour because I could hear gun shots further down the street,’ says Peter. ‘He came back in to the room looking like death and pleading with me to help him and asking for his mum, it was pretty funny,’ laughs Johnny. ‘LA was an amazing experience though we went for there for nine days and we played every night. The good thing was the gigs were decided on a day by day basis so someone would hear we were good and would ask us to play their party or venue.’ The day we meet with Man Like Me they’re running a little late, other than the fact we’ve dragged them from their North and East London homes to Blackheath in South London they are also exhausted after travelling back in the late hours of the previous night from Sheffield where they took to the stage to support Madness. ‘It was a weird one for us because we’re used to playing to hundreds of people and last night we there were thousands of people,’ says Johnny. ‘It was a nice change though because it turned our live set in to a completely different show to what we’re used to. Normally at our shows people have paid money to be there because they want to see us play but last night the venue was filled with old geezers who were there just to see Madness and they obviously had no idea who we were. Suggs came out on stage during our set to give his seal of approval which helped the crowed warm to us and by the end of it we had them in the palm of my hand,’ he continues. The last minute support slot came about as Suggs is a family friend of Johnny’s, ‘I didn’t used to like him very much because he used to put me to bed. I never saw him as an inspiration when I was younger because I was used to seeing him as a normal person who was friends with my family but as I’ve got older I’ve started to look up to him.’ As Johnny touched upon, an aging Madness fan base is not their usual calibre of audience, in fact Man Like Me are more used to Essex boys filling their gig venues. ‘We always get plenty of ‘lads’ at our gigs. Officially though our audience is 18-24 year olds girls. We did some research from the kinds of people that go on our Facebook page and that’s what it uncovered,’ says Peter. Touring and releasing albums aside the other thing that’s been keeping the band busy and in the public eye is their appearance in a recent Ikea advert in which the band are seen walking through various rooms at a house party singing a cover of the Jona Lewie track, You’ll Always Find
Me In The Kitchen At Parties, surrounded by a host of beautiful people and Ikea furniture. Although the advert has been a big success for the band and upon seeing the advert they seem like the perfect fit for the concept, Man Like Me weren’t handpicked for the role, instead they had to go through a series of auditions. ‘We were in Croatia and we got a text from our then manager saying he’d got us an audition for the advert. When we turned up at the audition we were completely hanging as we’d just got back from playing a festival and we’d only half practised the song. As we walked in we saw a panel of about 15 judges including Arthur Baker, the hip-hop producer from the 90s, and they were all staring at us. It was like something out of the X Factor,’ says Pete. ‘We had two auditions and by the end of the week they’d flown us out to Romania to shoot the advert. When we got there they showed us a tape from our first audition and it was one of the most cringe worthy things I’ve ever seen,’ continues Johnny. Three days of 6am till 2am shoots and the advert was completed and it made its debut in British TV a few months later during one of ITV’s X Factor shows. ‘I was watching it at work and I’ve never been more fearful in my whole life, I cringed the whole way through. I was so worried about what my mates and girlfriend would think but we actually had quite a good reception from it. I get the odd gag now and again like, ‘Pete there’s some washing up in the kitchen to do,’ but nothing I can’t handle or that wouldn’t be expected,’ says Pete. 53 ‘I was recognised while walking through Southend which was funny. I’m glad we did it because it was a nice reminder for people who were already aware of the band that we’re still around and making music,’ says Johnny. ‘We did a show in Leeds shortly after and there was a mum who came down just because she’d seen the advert and wanted to check us out. The only negative response I heard was a tweet from someone saying ‘the two guys in the Ikea advert should kill themselves’, that wasn’t great but in general people seem to like it.’ Moving forward Man Like Me hope to start work on a follow up to their first album which was released two years ago. ‘As soon as we’ve finished this tour our main priority is going to be writing and recording a new album. We’ve already started doing a few bits for it but at the moment half is live stuff the other half is electro based music so we don’t really know what way it’s going to go yet or what it’s going to sound like,’ says Johnny. ‘I’m really excited to get recording again,’ says Peter. ‘I actually think I prefer recording music to doing it live because if the sound is bad in a venue it can be really heartbreaking and it makes it hard to pretend that we’re having a good time and ultimately that’s what we want our live shows to be about – showcasing our music and having a great time.’ And with that the two of them head off home to get some sleep and prepare to jump on yet another train, to stay in yet another Travel Lodge.
PICK OF THE MONTH
Spare a Thought For Smaller Festivals This year Cheaper, in more beautiful surroundings and with a far more intimate crowd, the little guys in the festival stakes will be doing well this year. We like the sound of...
Pulp Confirmed For Exit Spotify To Launch In The US It’s been a strange old ride over here for Spotify, everyone had it, then everyone got pissed off with the adverts as they didn’t want to pay for it (if you pay for it it’s not free music right? It seems there are a lot who agree with us as of Spotify’s 10 million users, only 750,000 of those pay for the premium) and then when we had stopped using it for this very reason we can no longer re-join as now you need an invite. Well the Spotify web is thickening, soon the Sweedish started company will move to the US and is currently on the verge of a deal with Universal Music Group meaning that on it’s launch Spotify will be able to offer music from 80% of the US market.
We told you online but thought it was best to tell you again, Pulp will be headlining this years Exit Festival. Pulp will be playing the main stage at Exit on the 7th July with all original band members and a flurry of original tracks. The rest of the Exit line up currently includes : Arcade Fire, Pulp, Portishead, Underworld, Grinderman, Beirut, Hadouken!, Fedde Le Grande, Tiga, James Zabiela, Joris Voorn, Gramophonedzie with more to be announced soon. Exit is held in Serbia with 4 day tickets currently costing only £89. www.exitfest.org 7th-9th April
Deer Shed Festival The logo to this small festival looks cunningly like both a deer and a shed, clever, and enough to make us want to tell you about it. That and the fact that I Am Kloot, The Leisure Society and Erland And The Carnival are all playing. It’s set in beautiful park land, probably home to a few deers when the music is switched off, Deer Shed has three stages and is set over 3 days. 22nd -24th July / w/e ticket : £59 Baldersby Park, Topcliffe, North Yorkshire
The Naked and Famous
Little Howdy Do? Festival The Relentless Garage hosts the Little Howdy Do? Festival this month, a two day festival over the 3rd and 4th March. To get a taste of the bands that these guys pioneer past acts have included Noah and the Whale, Mumford and Sons and Alberta Cross. This Year’s festival includes Ed Sheeran, a boy that Jack knows to be going places, Matthew & The Atlas’s - pictured above - and Sam McCarthy, to name just a few. It will be, in short, a good old back to the roots unsigned live music two dayer. The Relentless Garage 20-22 Highbury Corner, N5 1RD Highbury & Islington tube station 3rd-4th March : £14.00
Carrying on where MGMT left off The Naked and Famous will be gracing our pages next issue and until then get your quick fingers typing in their web address on the 7th of March to download their new single, Young Blood from album, Passive Me, Aggressive You out on the 14th. www.thenakedandfamous.com
JOBS Neighboring Rights Manager Domino Records Experience in the collection of neighboring rights income around the world would be an advantage www.musicweek4jobs.com PA to Music Promoter PA for leading music promoters to support busy and charming Managing Director. www.handle.co.uk Digital Executive - Live Music Digital Executive to manage the website and CRM activities of this renowned name in live music and entertainment. www.handle.co.uk
Port Eliot, Cornwall A music, performance and literary festival in Cornwall Port Elliot is set in the stunning grounds of a period mansion. Port Elliot is a relaxed affair for the more avant-garde music lover with belini bars come boat houses, camping anywhere you should wish and literary speakers and performance art as well as music. This festival has been going for 9 years but probably missed your radar as it used to be called the Port Eliot Lit Fest. www.porteliotfestival.com 21st-24th July / w/e camping : £140
Standon Calling Just because the founder has been put into prison for swindling money it does not mean this festival is stopping this year. A brilliant boutique with cinemas, amazing unsigned acts and a swimming pool. www.standon-calling.com 11th-14th August / w/e ticket : £120
DVD Roundup words : Mark Williams
10 Films : with Some Crazy Bitches words : Matt Hamm
The Kids Are Alright 21st March Julianne Moore and Annette Benning are the ‘moms’ with a teenage son and daughter who want to meet their dad.
Black Swan Gosh, aren’t we bloody topical. But the mental decline of Natalie Portman’s dedicated ballerina in Aronofsky’s multi nominated Dario Argento nod is the first name on our barmy-broads list. Why you ask? Ok - pulling finger nails out…imaginary lesbian sex…growing black feathers…need we say more?!
The American 21st March George Clooney is a lonely assassin who vows that his next assignment will be his last. Not as cheesy at it sounds...
Let The Right One In If you’re a little girl who’s hundreds of years old, sucks blood, doesn’t wash a whole lot and feeds from the arm of her dying, doting father; then we think you may well be a tad bizarre.
We Are What We Are 21st March Mexican cannibal horror about children who must take on some ‘family chores’ after their father dies.
Single White Female A sure way to turn a girl a little crazy in the film world is with infatuation. 1992’s SWF revealed the darker side of flat sharing when Jennifer Jason Leigh becomes obsessed with her roomie; copying clothes, haircuts and jewellery before trying to kill her with an ice pick. In the words of Dizzee Rascal…bonkers.
Uncle Boonmee Who Can Recall His Past Lives 28th March Multi-awardwinning Thai film that should win a further accolade for best film title. And, finally... Age of the Dragons 21st March Gets a mention purely because it stars Danny Glover and Vinnie Jones in someone’s demented cheese-dream of a film. Based on Moby Dick apparently, but with dragons instead of a whale.
Misery We wince even now at the thought of dear James Caan’s feet being broken with a sledgehammer by Kathy Bates’ Oscar winning Annie. Note to self, do not become famous author, trek to snowy mountain retreat for inspiration and crash car into ravine…it does not end well.
Kick Ass ‘Okay you cunts... Let’s see what you can do now!’ - Chloe Moretz’s genius turn as Hit Girl is up there with our favourite female characters of all time, but aged 12, dressed in a purple spandex suit and fighting men three times here size, can only suggest that she is one crazy bitch. But you try telling her that while she’s shoving your teeth through your brain.
Kill Bill 1 & 2 Tarantino loves a strong female character (especially their feet, the dirty perve) but his 2003 homage to kung fu films of the 70s and 80s oozed at the bloodied seam with mental women. Need we remind you of Gogo, Lucy Liu’s faithful teenage side-kick?! She chats up men in bars, rubs their fleshy swords and then stabs them until their deader than dead. Thank God Uma Thurman killed her with a plank of wood and a nail. Coffy Blax-ploitation is always a dangerous area for those of the male persuasion to lurk and this 1973’s Pam Grier flick is no exception. This self titled ‘One-Chick-Hit-Squad’, Grier kills every mother fucker in the room armed with just a shotgun and what we can only imagine is a rather painful time of the month. From Dusk Till Dawn Salma Hayek is a rather beautiful woman, but throw her into the darkly wicked world of Robert Rodriguez and she becomes an evil, snake wielding stripper. Still fancy a bit?! Well, how about the fact she turns into a blood sucking demon, with a face that looks like it’s been Face-Off’ed with Susan Boyle and then reversed over with a truck. Natural Born Killers Juliette Lewis is not the most sane person at any time of the day, but in Oliver Stone’s 1994 Tarantino scribed film on psychopathic serial killers, her character Mallory Knox takes some beating in the league table of insanity. Check out the wonderful scene as she sings & then screams ‘Born Bad’ locked up in a cell, before running headfirst into the metal door. Stark. Raving. Mad. Audition If ever you needed a reason to fear ex girlfriends, Eiha Shiina is that example. After poking a paralysis needle into her man, she begins to torture him in an entirely eerie, calm way. Lesson to be learned: Never sleep with a woman, lead them on and never call…they’ll stab you in the tongue with a needle and cut off your leg with a wire saw. You’ve been warned mankind, you’ve been warned.
Don’t Be Afraid of the Dark
Films can affect us all in a variety of ways. They can make you laugh, they can make you cry, they can make you gaze on in bewilderment and wonder how Danny Dyer keeps finding work. But they can also give you itchy feet. All it takes is one well-shot, idyllic landscape and thoughts of abandoning the nine-til-five rat race surge through your head before you know what’s hit you.
A prime example would be The Motorcycle Diaries, starring Gael Garcia Bernal as a young, pre-revolutionary Che Guevara. Just try and watch it without wanting to book the first flight to Buenos Aires, rent a knackered motorbike and go on the ultimate road-trip. In Bruges offers a more manageable excursion with a few days off work. Never had the thought of visiting Bruges, in Belgium, even crossed most peoples minds before seeing this comic-thriller about two hitmen laying low for a few days in the picturesque Belgian town. Now it seems like a great idea. Although hopefully you won’t be hiding from the law after a botched assassination. Rarely has spending an extended period of time on a train seemed more appealing than in Wes Anderson’s The Darjeeling Limited. Being cooped up on a train with strangers is something many of us face on a daily basis, and it doesn’t usually lead to the kind of adventures that Owen Wilson, Adrien Brody and Jason Schwartzman find themselves having across India. More just staring at the back of someone’s bald, sweaty head really. It would be remiss of me not to mention Lord of The Rings here, and all that it did
FILM MARCH words : Mark Williams
for New Zealand’s tourism. But for something closer to home, Withnail and I always makes hanging out in a dilapidated cottage in the middle of the English countryside greatly appealing. With or without a highly destructive, alcoholic, out of work actor, who has neglected to mention what his uncle is expecting in return for your free stay. But enough of this wistful travel-talk, let’s see what’s on at your local cinema this month... Archipelago (4th March) is the second film from British director Joanna Hogg and follows an upper-middle class family as they take a holiday together in Tresco. They have gathered together to give son Edward a good send off before he goes to Africa for 11 months on a volunteering expedition, but cracks soon start to appear in the happy family facade. Hogg’s style of direction is to use long takes and let conversations unfold, which lend a certain documentary aesthetic to this bleak, quirky comedy. If you’re a fan of something a bit Shakespearian, then look no further than a re-imagining of The Tempest (4th March), starring Helen Mirren as Prospera. Prospera was formerly known as Prospero in the Shakespearian tale, and was male, which provides the most obvious twist to previous adaptations. As the story goes, Prospera is left to die and stranded on an island, biding her time until she is able to cause a shipwreck which brings those to her who are responsible for her having spent the last 12 years there. It is a grand tale of revenge
and is being given a very CGI-heavy make-over by Miramax, but you can only hope they haven’t tried to give the work of Shakespeare a back seat to the special effects. Comic relief comes in the form of Trinculo and Stephano, played by Russell 57 Brand and Alfred Molina respectively. www.tempest-themovie.com Patagonia (4th March) intertwines the two, very separate lives of Gwen; thirty and living in Cardiff, and Cerys; an elderly diabetic woman living in the Southern Andes of Argentina. Their stories are contrasting, but inextricably linked by the area of southernmost South America, called Patagonia, which has had a large Welsh heritage ever since 1865 when settlers first moved there to escape Anglican rule. In true, two buses come along at once style, there was a documentary out last year called Separado, in which Gruff Rhys from the Super Furry Animals travels around Patagonia, looking for a long lost relative. Both Separado and Patagonia are films which could cause the aforementioned travel bug to nest in your brain until you find yourself quitting your job and heading off for 6 months backpacking in South America, so approach with caution! www.patagoniamovie.com Norwegian Wood (11th March) is best known as a song by The Beatles, and later a book by Haruki Murakami. This Japanese film, set in 1969, is a tale of love, loss and nostalgia for the past, directed by Tran Anh Hung and starring Rinko Kikuchi, of Babel fame. Murakami is arguably one of the world’s greatest
The Insatiable Moon
living writers, and the success of this book made him something of a star (for a writer at least) in Japan when it was released in 1987. A beautifully shot book adaptation, which uses The Beatles song as a recurring motif. A quick mention must be given to Submarine (18th March), partly because it is the début feature film from Richard Ayoade, otherwise known as Moss from the IT Crowd. The other reason it must only be given a quick mention is that there’s a dearth of information about it floating about on the internet! What we do know is that it has been adapted from Joe Dunthorne’s novel of the same name, Paddy Considine is in it, and it is a light-hearted, coming-of-age story, centered on a 15 year old boy called Oliver Tate. Although it first premièred at the Sundance film festival in 2008, Ballast (18th March) is only this month getting it’s full UK release. Who knows what took it so long but at least it’s finally made it, as it was raved about by many upon it’s release in the U.S. Ballast is a quietly intense, social realism narrative, based in a very poor area of the
Mississippi Delta. It features a lot of local actors who have probably experienced first hand some of the issues of poverty that the film examines. Understated, yet powerful and affecting seems to be the gist of it; washed out landscapes and characters who seem to have been left behind by the American Dream. I already like Don’t Be Afraid of the Dark (4th March) a lot, just from the trailer, because it made me shriek. I would like to say it startled me, and I growled in a manly fashion, but alas, it was definitely more of a shriek. Such is life. Issues of masculinity aside, Guillermo Del Toro has put his producers stamp on this horror film, which usually means very good things. The story focuses on Sally Hurst, a young girl who has recently moved into an old 19th century mansion that her dad (played by Guy Pearce) is restoring. So far, so good on the classic horror film set-up. Sally then discovers a hidden basement, full of all sorts of nasties, but of course, being but a small child, does anyone believe she’s released an assortment of monsters from the dark places beneath the house? No, of course they don’t. They’ll learn... www.dontbeafraidofthedark-movie.com
The Insatiable Moon (4th March) is a film all the way from New Zealand, about a middle-aged man called Arthur who believes he is the second son of God. It is a warm, funny and touching story, which involves a community wanting to shut down a boarding house full of harmless local down-and-outs, and the owner’s battle against widespread prejudice to keep a roof over their heads. Rawiri Paratene plays Arthur, who some may know from Whale Rider, which was a huge film for New Zealand back in 2003. www.theinsatiablemoon.com For fans of classic horror, Wake Wood (25th March) should tickle your fancy as it is the first film produced by Hammer Films in thirty years. Hammer were, for a long time, a name synonymous with spine-tingling tales of the supernatural. Christopher Lee made his name in Hammer Horrors, most notably as Dracula, and so Wake Wood has a legacy as long as your blood-spattered arm to live up to. And from the evidence of the trailer, it does not disappoint. Firstly, and this is important for the horror genre, the film has an 18 certificate. This may seem trivial, but I’m always suspicious of a horror film with less than a 15 certificate. How can something be truly scary if children are allowed to see it? Wake Wood has a definite feel of the original Wicker Man to it, with a village full of weird customs and traditions, being visited by a couple who hope to resurrect their young daughter from the dead, to spend a few more days with her. It looks like good, old fashioned grizzly, gory fun. www.wakewoodmovie.com
Drugs in Film
words : Mark Williams
The use of drugs is a recurring theme in cinema, and has been for some time. With the benefit of hindsight, it can be a useful indicator of political and social attitudes towards drugs at any given point during the last eighty years of Hollywood cinema.
As the world’s dominant film industry, this article will focus its attention on Hollywood for a potted history of drugs in the movies. And in order to be more specific, our definition of what a ‘drug’ is shall not include alcohol, as in popular culture they are usually two separately defined entities, despite the addictive and damaging nature of alcohol being on a par with most narcotic substances. One of the earliest examples of Hollywood attempting to deal with drug use in a meaningful way is the 1936 film Reefer Madness. It was intended, more or less, as a source of public information; to inform those concerned about marijuana of its supposed dangers and mind-corrupting evils. To say it was a little bit one-sided in it’s depiction of smoking marijuana is like saying Eastenders is a little bit miserable. Drug use, and marijuana in particular, was something that was still relatively new to
the American national psyche, but was quickly gaining a reputation as a corrupting and socially destructive influence on the youth. Reefer Madness features wild-eyed teenagers, a women laughing madly as she watches a man beaten to death and men driven sex-mad by smoking the devil weed. After World War Two and into the 1950s, Hollywood was under constant scrutiny from the House of Un-American Activities (HUAC), who believed that communism was infiltrating every aspect of American life. With film being such a popular entertainment medium, it was therefore essential that any traces of communism or subversion were rooted out of the industry. Those accused of having communist sympathies were either put on trial and jailed, or blacklisted, and unable to find work with the studios who were unwilling to hire them for fear of reprisals.
HUAC saw communists everywhere and believed them more likely to appear where other subversive activities took place. Taking drugs was certainly viewed as subversive, not to mention degenerate, and so to portray drug use as anything other than dangerous and life-destroying, might have suggested you were into other unusual activities such as promiscuous same-sex relationships (still widely illegal at this time, and actually still illegal in some southern states of America until as recently as 2003!) or speaking Russian with your other commie pals. Despite the risks around such subject matters, The Man with the Golden Arm (1955) and Monkey on My Back (1957) were two of the first films to take a more measured approach to tackling narcotics on-screen. Both centre upon a male protagonist who is battling with a drug problem; Frank Sinatra plays a card dealer and heroine addict Frankie
The free-loving sixties brought with it a slowly softening attitude towards drug use.
Machine in the former and Cameron Mitchell is a boxer with a morphine problem in the latter. While neither stray from the drugs-are-bad, just-say-no approach that was, and still is very much a part of the American national psyche, they did at least have empathy for the men who had fallen hopelessly into addiction. They weren’t sinister fiends, roaming the streets at night for their next dirty fix, but human beings with a problem that could be overcome, like any other. The free-loving sixties brought with it a slowly softening attitude towards drug use. I Love You, Alice B. Toklas (1968) and Psych-Out (1968) both feature casual, non life-destroying drug use. It still wasn’t an acceptable part of mainstream culture, but by 1969 and Easy Rider, it was certainly seen as being synonymous with the hippie counter-culture. Smoking cannabis was becoming more widespread, and so, naturally, many of those making films were also smoking it without feeling the need to murder someone shortly after, or spiral out of control and into chaos. Easy Rider is one of the most iconic films of the sixties, and the film’s central characters all experiment with marijuana, LSD and cocaine without being victims of these substances, instead they fall victim to the prejudice against them and the perceived threat they represent. As Jack Nicholson’s character George Hanson puts it ‘They’re not scared of you. They’re scared of what you represent to ‘em.’
The slow osmosis of recreational drug use into more mainstream territory was happening in the 1970s, but it was still perceived to be something on the fringes of decent society. Russ Meyer’s Beyond the Valley of the Dolls (1970) featured wild parties full of drink and drugs and young hipsters using words like ‘groovy’ and ‘far-out’ whilst always on the look out for a new experience. National Lampoon’s Animal House (1979), was also limiting drugs to the young and foolish, as a bunch of frat-guys try to get one up on their stern Dean Vernon Wormer. The feeling was that marijuana was still illegal, but it probably wouldn’t get you into too much trouble with the law if you were just a college student experimenting with new ideas and substances. But with Apocalypse Now (1979), drug use was looked at from a new angle. Here were stand-up, all-American men, drafted into the U.S. army to fight in the Vietnam War, with no way of escape. LSD, opium and cannabis had become their means of escape, not physically, but at least, briefly, mentally from the horrors of war and the endless fear of the unknown out there. Platoon (1986) re-iterated this theme of scared soldiers turning to narcotics for some kind of release, in a nineteen-year war that had never been a popular choice with the American public. The eighties is often thought of as the decade of excess. Big shoulder pads, big hair, big mobile phones, loud suits and the rise of cocaine.
Cocaine wasn’t something that students, hippies or indeed, most of the public could afford, even if they wanted it. Scarface (1983) helped cement the reputation of cocaine as the drug of excess, causing the swift rise to power and then violent end of Tony Montana. Robocop (1987) isn’t necessarily the first film you would think of when considering films with a strong social or political message, but in terms of cocaine, it definitely makes it the preserve of the bad guys. Just before he gets blown up, we see one sleazy executive hosting a small party with prostitutes and cocaine, and the main source of income for the bad guys is a factory producing the stuff. Set at the turn of the eighties into the nineties, American Psycho is one the best films for representations of yuppie excess, and of course Patrick Bateman and pals rarely leave their penthouses without knowing that the bar they’re going to has good coke toilets. Drugs aren’t responsible for Bateman’s psychotic behavior, but they certainly don’t help the situation. As we progressed through the nineties, representation of drugs was definitely leaning back towards a more 1950s approach of the problems they caused, although with a slightly more informed, balanced approach this time. The infamous going-cold-turkey scene in Trainspotting (1996) was a harrowing look at how difficult it can be to break free of something as addictive as heroin. It provided an alternate view of addiction to
Drug-addicts are criminals, unless they are a celebrity, in which case they just need to spend a couple of weeks in an expensive rehab clinic, followed by a ‘My Drugs Hell’ exclusive story afterwards.
the tabloids which were, and always have been, very much of the opinion that drug-addicts are criminals, unless they are a celebrity, in which case they just need to spend a couple of weeks in an expensive rehab clinic, followed by a ‘My Drugs Hell’ exclusive story afterwards. Requiem for a Dream (2000) and Pulp Fiction (1994) also drew attention to the destructive and dangerous aspect of drug use. Requiem for a Dream follows several characters whose lives are completely destroyed by addiction, one even ending up with his arm being amputated after it has become infected from repeated use of needles. And Pulp Fiction introduced a large audience to the dangers of overdose when Uma Thurman got cocaine confused with heroin. However, while films about drugs have taken a more social-problem approach, this is not to say that this is the only representation we get. Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas (1998) chronicled the slightly insane adventures of Dr Gonzo and Raoul Duke as they hit Las Vegas like a two man narcotic whirlwind, leaving a trail of chaos and destroyed hotel rooms behind them.
The Big Lebowski (1998) also makes the point that there is such a thing as casual drug use, with the Dude’s penchant for the occasional joint and a white russian. All too often in films, drug use is a life destroying habit, when most of us know plenty of people who have dabbled in something illegal at some point in time and gone onto lead perfectly normal lives. So, where does all this leave us now? What are drugs in the 21st century? Are they a one-way ticket to complete breakdown and bankruptcy or has American cinema softened it’s stance on recreational chemical substances? While Hollywood of course, wants as many people as possible to go see a film, and are happy to court a little bit of controversy to do so, they are also largely unwilling to rock the boat and challenge the status quo. America has a long, multi, multi-billion dollar history of a ‘war against drugs’ and so if the studios wish to continue to operate in the largely uncensored way that they do, they must make certain concessions.
The main one being that drugs use must have consequences. Admittedly, for a lot of people, drugs do have unhappy consequences, and so to accurately portray real-life on screen, it may be entirely necessary to show someone battling with addiction. But, all too often, if someone is associated with drugs in a film, it is seen as an easy signifier to indicate that they are weak, a bad influence or some kind of loose cannon that can’t be trusted. We all know that this is far from the truth, but simply because of the language of films, it is somehow expected. Just as the first guy to start freaking out in a horror film is guaranteed to die soon, and just as any film with Jack Black in it will probably suck, the conventions of Hollywood film dictate that, as South Park’s school councillor Mr Mackey would say, ‘drugs are bad, mmmkay?’
WORLD FILM Have you ever felt the need to broaden your film horizons, stretch your legs a little and try something new, from a country whose films you’ve never seen before? Foreign films have to battle hard to get attention in the UK and so chances are, if there’s something on at the cinema from Mexico or South Korea, there’s a very good reason why that the cinema has chosen to screen it.
Spain Spanish cinema probably has the greatest number of Hollywood-crossover actors and directors of the non-English speaking world. Antonio Banderas, Penelope Cruz and Javier Bardem all made their names in great Spanish melodramas, directed by the likes of Pedro Almodóvar. Classics: Holy Mountain (1973) & Bad Education (2004) Recent: The Orphanage (2007)
But you don’t need to wait until the next time you go to the cinema to do a bit of exploring. Whether you’re a Blockbuster, Lovefilm or Fopp type of person, here’s a Who’s Jack overview of some of the great films of world cinema. France words : Mark Williams
Ah, the French, where would we be without the romanticism, whimsy and creativity of our Gallic cousins? But it’s not just the French New Wave with directors such as Francios Truffaut and Jon-Luc Goddard that they have given to the world. Arguably, the French can claim to have invented the ability to capture and screen the moving picture itself. The pioneering Lumière Brothers first began screening very short films in the mid 1890s, usually credited by historians as the very beginning of modern cinema. Classics: Amelie (2001) & Jules et Jim (1962) Recent: A Prophet (2010)
Mexico With the help of directors such as Guillermo del Toro, Mexico has established itself as a major player on the world cinema circuit. Y Tu Mama Tambien is one of the all-time great road-trip, coming of age movies and the recent cannibalistic horror We Are What We Are has sent chills down a lot of spines for it’s close-to-the-bone horror. Classics: Amores Perros (2000) & Y Tu Mama Tambien (2001) Recent: We Are What We Are (2010)
Japan The land of the rising sun has a cinematic history as long as your arm, and is home to one of the most influential directors of all-time, Akira Kurosawa. Rarely has any director had such a consistently high-standard of output.
Animé is also a big part of the film landscape in Japan although it doesn’t tend to travel well in America or Europe, because it is animated and therefore wrongly seen as something only for children, by distribution and marketing bods.
Ingmar Bergman is to Swedish cinema, what Arnold Schwarzenegger was to action films in the eighties: without him they would still have happened, but not quite as well. Let The Right One In was widely regarded as one of the best films of 2009, and as is so often the way with successful foreign films, it has since been Hollywood-ised.
Wim Wenders and Werner Herzog are two fine examples of current German directors with an output of great films to their names. With Herzog in particular, you can never guess what he’s going to do next. German expressionist cinema during the silent era was highly iconic; Nosferatu is a good place to begin.
Classics: Seven Samurai (1954) & Battle Royale (2000) Recent: Howl’s Moving Castle (2004)
Classics: The Seventh Seal (1957) & My Life as a Dog (1985) Recent: Let The Right One In (2009)
Classics: The Lives of Others (2006) & M (1931) Recent: The White Ribbon (2009)
Thailand The film industry of Thailand has really had a renaissance in the last 10 years. For a while the output was largely spectacular martial-arts and action based fare, but 2010 saw the brilliantly named Uncle Boonmee Who Can Recall His Past Lives collect awards like Madonna collects third-world children. Classics: Tears of the Black Tiger (2000) & Ong Bak (2003) Recent: Uncle Boonmee Who Can Recall His Past Lives (2010)
China The Chinese really know how to do the epic film with some style. Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon kick-started a host of fantastical, grand tales, preceding the likes of The House of Flying Daggers and Curse of the Golden Flower. With a population like China has, they often don’t need CGI for a battle scene with thousands of soldiers, often with jaw-dropping results. Classics: Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon (2000) & Raise the Red Lantern (1991) Recent: City of Life and Death (2009)
UK We do tend to get a little over-shadowed by our friends across the pond when it comes to films. But we’ve been making them as long they have, and just as well, only on a somewhat smaller scale. While the Richard Curtis rom-com is sadly one of our most recognisable exports of recent years, the likes of director Mike Leigh (Another Year) and Matthew Vaughan (Kick-Ass) give us something rather more exciting to shout about. Classics: Trainspotting (1996) & The Third Man (1949) Recent: Kick-Ass (2010)
USA Well, it seems a bit silly to give an introduction to American cinema here, seeing as most of the iconic films of the 20th century came out of Hollywood. Hollywood may have had it’s ups and downs, but it is an industry, an institution and a film-making behemoth that shows no signs of not being the dominant market force any time soon. Classics: Citizen Kane (1941) & The Godfather (1972) Recent: Winters Bone (2010)
2010 saw The Secrets in Their Eyes win the Oscar for Best Foreign Language Film, as well as a raft of other accolades. It has been a huge Spanish-language success and the second biggest box-office success in Argentina of all time.
Although the world still awaits Neighbours: The Movie, Australia has a 63 lot to offer on the big screen. The stop-motion animation Mary and Max is a heart-warming tale of the pen-friendship struck up by a 12 year old Australian girl and a middle aged Jewish American with Aspergers Syndrome.
Classics: The Motorcycle Diaries (2004) & Nine Queens (2000) Recent: The Secrets in Their Eyes (2010)
Classics: Priscilla, Queen of the Desert (1994) & Rabbit Proof Fence (2004) Recent: Mary and Max (2009)
Italy South Korea Oldboy, directed by Park Chan-wook is the ultimate tale of twisted revenge, and was possibly the world-cinema film to see in 2003. An utterly visceral experience is the best way to describe it. Classics: Oldboy (2003) & Audition (2004) Recent: Breathless (2010)
Neo-realism and gritty social dramas fuelled by poverty and recession is what has, historically, made Italian cinema famous. You would think that with a man like Berlusconi in charge and in control of most of the media, their recent output would be something akin to Confessions of a Window Cleaner, but happily this is not the case. Classics: Il Postino (1994) & The Bicycle Thieves (1948) Recent: Gomorrah (2008)
Russia Russia has fallen on less productive times of late, only producing a handful of films each year, but it was once one of the world’s major film producers and pioneers of modern film-making techniques during the Soviet era. Classic: Solaris (1972) & Battleship Potemkin (1925) Recent-ish: Nightwatch (2004)
PICK OF THE MONTH
JVC’s First Ever 3D Camcorder The HD 3D:GS-TD1 is the first ever consumer 3D Camcorder meaning all of you people that now have 3D TV (how many is that exactly? Probably not a lot) can record yourself and your friends and even your own movies in 3D. This will no doubt throw up some interesting ‘only filmed on a 3D hand held’ independent films if it is any good. The GS-TD1 uses two camera lenses and two 3.32 megapixel CMOS sensors, one for each lens, to capture three dimensional images much the same way that human eyes work.
FILM THE GOOD NEWS Hesher Is Better Than Ke$ha
Who’s Jack Team Up With Vue for New Website Check out the new Vue website currently rolling out to Aberdeen but with everyone else in a matter of months. It contains reviews, coming soons, special events and your favourite mag, Who’s Jack are in there with the critics giving you a heads up on what’s going to be good and what’s likely to be a bit shit and not worth bothering with. www.new.myvue.com
You may have noticed Innocents recent advert staring their bottle of smoothie as a super hero and like us you may have thought it was great but the full version went on that little bit too long. Well, now you can show them how you think it should have been done. Make your own movie that is less than 30 seconds long and upload it to their Youtube channel before the 17th April to be in with a chance to win £5,000, two tickets to the BFI London Film Festival and have your mini movie shown on TV. You can vote for other films on the channel until the 25th April also to have your say. www.youtube.com/innocentdrinksltd
Jameson Cult Film Club Jameson is firmly on the film brand band wagon and after a successful run of film screenings in 2010 they return on the 3rd of March for another. This will see The Royal College of Surgeons transformed into a live ‘infected zone’ for the screening of Monsters including a special appearance from director Gareth Edward. On arrival, you will be greeted by staff in gas masks and decontamination suits to be led through a jungle undergrowth, with undeterminable noises emanating around them, not knowing when or where ‘the creatures’ might strike next. This is without a doubt the way to see the film if you have not yet or are going for a second run. Tickets are free and available from the Jameson Cult FIlm websites though they are limited to sign up quick. www.jamesoncultfilmclub.com
Pair Joseph Gordon-Levitt with a film that won the 2010 Sundance Grand Jury prize and we’re happy bunnies. He stars as a tattooed, druggie waster who befriends a mourning kid in indie-film Hesher; it’s looking to be his most unhinged performance so far. Oh…and it co-stars a make-up less Natalie Portman too. Pretty cool huh?!
Kunis & Franco : Off to See The Wizard
Have you seen Andy Lloyd-Webber’s Wizard of Oz? We have. It’s rubbish. Less rubbish and more exciting is the recent news that Oscar nominated James Franco and Black Swan lesbian Mila Kunis will star in the film prequel directed by Sam Raimi of Evil Dead fame. Zombie witches and flying monkeys?! Better.
There might be a tad too many comic-book adaptations about currently, but what the public wants, etc - with this in mind, watch the second Theatrical Trailer for Kenneth Brannagh’s Thor. Hannibal Lector himself kicks Godlike ass and CGI monsters make every obese guy at ComicCon cream his pants, bring on April 27th.
Innocent Mini Movies
Birds Eye View Festival
Del Toro Gets Wood for Pinocchio
This festival celebrates woman in film Sad to hear of Guillermo Del Toro’s and is held at the BFI in March. The departure from The Hobbit films? Be festival returns this month for it’s seventh happy for his 3D stop-motion Pinocchio annual celebration of women project. Teaming up with the Jim Henson filmmakers from 8-17 March at the ICA at Company, the Pan’s Labyrinth director the BFI Southbank, with over 40 events plans to lean on the book’s original and screenings including an unprecesurreal and darker side. No man better dented seven international feature debuts suited for the job. (fiction and documentary) by women, plus seven specially commissioned new live scores for silent classics. This year the THE BAD NEWS festival opens on 8 March, the 100th anniversary of International Women’s Day and Big Momma’s House Success More has program highlights that include the Confusing Than Inception premiere of Susanne Bier’s Golden Globe Not only is it incredible that Martin winning and Oscar nominated In A Better Lawrence’s Big Momma’s House sequel World and Kelly Reichardt’s Meek’s Cutoff ‘Like Father, Like Son’ was actually made. starring Oscar nominee Michelle Williams It’s even more incredible that it made $4 (+ Q&A with actress Shirley Henderson) million in it’s opening week. For those people who spent their hard earned cash March 8 - 17 2011 www.birds-eye-view.co.uk on this utter pile of lowest form of wit... That is all.
New Business Flick Productions We are looking for someone who has contacts and direct experience of working with digital agencies, branding companies, PR companies etc in London. firstname.lastname@example.org Internship TV, The Manic Media Group Seeking a full time Media/English Student or Graduate www.themanicmediagroup.co.uk Production Assistant Mavericks Film Art-time production assistant for rapidly expanding London based film company. email@example.com
Michael Bay Finds His New Muse
Hollywood heavyweight Michael Bay can be forgiven for making a few mistakes. But his latest smudge is news that he and a certain Taylor Lautner are looking for funding for a new Mr & Mrs Smith-meets-Wanted project. That ain’t gonna be good.
A Better ‘Paul’ Trailer
We thoroughly enjoyed ‘Paul’, despite its simplicity and predictably ending; but on hearing an interview with Pegg & Frost, they revealed that the trailer isn’t how they’d have liked to promote the film; preferring an angle that doesn’t even mention the alien at all.
High Society DRUGS ARE BAD. words: Charlotte O’Conor images: Must credit Wellcome Library, London
Perhaps the reason that scene is so funny is because we all spend most of our lives hearing the same thing - from teachers and parents when we’re growing up, and now from politicians, news reports and the press. Drugs are bad. So why is the illegal drugs trade worth over £200 billion? If we all know they’re bad, why are they still such huge business, and, like it or not, such a deeply ingrained part of our cultural heritage? Opinion is, and probably always will be, deeply divided on the subject of drugs. Among my contemporaries, it’s a contentious subject. In some circles, recreational drugs are a normal part of everyday life – sometimes to enable a more creative outlook, sometimes to simply get through the day. For others they’re purely a party hit, an occasional indulgence to let loose on a wild night. There’s also an increasingly large anti-drugs movement among London’s
young community, perhaps as a backlash to the trashy rise of celebrity culture, where overdoses, breakdowns and a stint in The Priory are all part of getting your Heat magazine wings. For our generation, the drugs question is a loaded one. We don’t have the luxury, as perhaps our parents may have done in the 1960s and 70s, of not worrying about the story behind what we’re buying. We’ve seen news reports about the links between addiction and the sex industry, seen the devastation and violence caused by warring gangs in Mexican drug cartels. We may have watched a friend go through a bad experience, perhaps followed them on the trip to A&E. In-depth education processes starting at a young age also means that we are aware of the dangers associated with mind-altering substances. And yet, the drugs trade is growing, not shrinking.
The role of drugs in our culture and their influence on the creative arts was the subject of a recent exhibition at the Wellcome Collection, aptly named ‘High Society’. The exhibition hinged on the idea that ‘the alteration of consciousness is a universal human impulse’. It explored not only the history of drugs and how they are viewed by different cultures, but also documented their role in the eternal human struggle for truth and inspiration. For centuries, artists of all disciplines have sought to free themselves from the restrictions of society and drown out logic in a quest to discover a purer form of creativity. Writer Aldous Huxley, famous for his dystopian classic ‘Brave New World’ was a known advocate of LSD and mescaline, which he believed had the power to block out filters in the brain and allow the taker to see the world with new eyes. A few years later, Beat Generation writer
‘Drugs are bad. You shouldn’t do drugs. If you do them you’re bad. Because drugs are bad’. If you haven’t seen that particular episode of South Park, this is bumbling teacher Mr Mackay’s attempt to convince Cartman and co to avoid the temptations of mind-altering substances.
William Burroughs, a lifelong heroin addict who wrote some of his greatest work under the influence, said that he believed LSD could bring an individual into a state of permanently expanded consciousness – even if only taken on one occasion. In an interesting parallel, scientists investigating the effects of small drug doses on spiders discovered that the drugs had a direct effect on the shape and pattern of the creature’s webs. Under the influence of LSD, spiders spin symmetrical, ordered, near perfect structures. Its influence on creative processes has been described by advocates in a similar way – removing self-awareness and limitations to create a purer, more perfect vision of art. In contrast, under the influence of cannabis, spider’s webs become fractured, tangled and near-useless. If it’s true that a desire to challenge the psyche is part of what makes us human, it’s difficult to imagine a future in which drugs won’t play a significant role. Looking back over generations of painters, musicians, writers and actors, it seems as though drugs are always loitering in the background, pushing people to their limits. Sometimes the results have been hailed as milestones and masterpieces. Sometimes they have ended in tragedy, decay, and a waste of what could have been something extraordinary. Mind-altering substances have been driving the work of great artists for centuries. To this day, literary critics are debating the extent to which opium use affected the writing of many of the great Romantic poets. Perhaps the most famous Romantic of them all, Lord Byron, was a known opium addict, while Percy Shelley, John Keats and Samuel Taylor Coleridge were all users. Coleridge’s great work ‘Kubla Khan’ is said to have been written as the result of an opium vision. The 1950s Beat Generation, encompassing Burroughs, Allen Ginsberg and Jack Kerouac among others, is credited with changing the face of literature and inspiring a youth movement that was to have a strong influence on the hippy culture of the 1960s and 70s. Their works, perhaps the most
famous of which is Kerouac’s masterpiece ‘On the Road’, were often characterised by frequent references to drug experimentation and a marked rejection of classic literary traditions. Over in the music camp, the rock and roll movement has long been characterised by a hedonistic lifestyle, in which drugs continue to play a key role. Some of our all-time classics have drugs to thank – either as a direct inspiration (Clapton’s ‘Cocaine’, The Rolling Stone’s ‘Brown Sugar’, The Beatles’ ‘Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds’) or for their role in setting the artist free from social constraints. This idea of freedom and purity of thought also underlines one of history’s most revolutionary art movements – Surrealism. The movement aimed to reach ‘a pure state through which to express the true process of thought’. Many surrealist painters experimented with hypnotism and drugs, in a mission to reach this state of purity. The surprising exception to this is Surrealism’s most extravagant poster boy, Salvador Dali, who claimed that the only drug he had ever tried was hashish, which he hated and never sampled again. As someone approaching their 27th Birthday, I’m quietly aware of the ’27 Club’ – the group of musicians whose lives ended abruptly at the age of 27 due to excessive drug abuse. Some, like Hendrix and Jim Morrison were the victims of an overdose. Others, notably Nirvana’s legendary frontman Kurt Kobain, committed suicide in a drug-fuelled haze. Beyond the ’27 Club’, the creative industries are awash with drug-related tragedies. Screen icon Marilyn Monroe was found dead in 1962 following an overdose of barbiturates. The ‘Speedball’, a deadly mixture of heroin and cocaine has been responsible for the deaths of actors John Bellushi and River Phoenix – the latter collapsed outside Jonny Depp’s notorious nightclub ‘The Viper Room’ aged just 19. Tragic Warhol muse Edie Sedgwick was filmed describing speed as ‘the ultimate, all-time high’ before her demise into addiction and eventual death from an overdose in 1971. Sedgwick represents the sober truth behind the bohemian glamour so often associated with the Studio 54
era, and acts as a reminder that what may be a source of inspiration and freedom to some could be a death sentence for others. While drugs have driven many to explore new depths of creativity, they have arguably driven still more to the brink of sanity. With the meteoric rise of celebrity culture, has come a raw, honest view into the lives of the rich and famous and their battle with drugs. Amy Winehouse immediately springs to mind – undeniably talented, yet mostly found staggering disoriented around the streets of Camden, trademark eye makeup smudged across her face. Winehouse is a prime example of how the good can turn ugly. The troubled masterpiece ‘Back to Black’ was reportedly created in the haze of addiction, but its success was followed by a departure 67 from the spotlight, as Winehouse battled her spiralling dependency. Her struggle is mirrored across the Atlantic, as stars such as Lindsay Lohan forge an increasingly undignified path through police cells and late night Hollywood parties. The ‘quickfix’ cash that comes with 21st century fame has brought with it a generation of drug users that perhaps herald a darker future than their free-loving counterparts in the 1960s and 70s. It’s probably fair to say that drugs, whatever form they might take, are always going to be part of our lives. We have a cup of coffee in the morning when we can’t wake up and painkillers when our head hurts from all the wine we drank last night. Maybe we’ll take a break and go outside for a gossip and a couple of cigarettes. While this is normal, largely harmless behaviour, it pinpoints the paradox at the heart of our relationship with mindaltering drugs – we might hate them, love them or fear them, but most of us can’t live without them. Our drug culture has seen many great, and some not-so-great minds fall apart in their search for the truth. But it has also been irrefutably involved in the creation of some of the greatest pieces of art, literature, film and music of all time. Former Hollywood wild-child Angelina Jolie, no stranger to the highs and lows of experimentation, somewhat unexpectedly sums it up in the form of a tattoo. Etched across the back of her neck are the words ‘what nourishes me also destroys me’.
Being a north Londoner I rarely venture south of the river unless it’s for good reason, this is probably because of a lingering and admittedly irrational fear that I’ll be kidnapped and sold into slavery in exchange for sugarcane and rubber. HOWEVER, when I heard about the new South London Art Map, launched last month, I couldn’t resist going for a snoop, after all, it is nice to be in the know, you know? So the South London Art Map (previously the Deptford Art Map) is the one stop shop for art in south London, concentrating on three key areas, Deptford, Peckham and Bankside. The map pinpoints the 90 galleries, artists’ studios and pop up shops in these three areas, and showcases them with events throughout the month such as Last Fridays and artist led tours. Although you can visit most of the galleries on a weekly basis (just check the opening times on the website first, rookie mistake on my part) the tours are a great way of making a day of it, and can be very useful if like me, you don’t know where the hell you are going. Oh and if you’re lucky, there’s wine.
Meandering along the streets of South London seeking out the hidden art gems is a refreshing break from the larger institutions, free of oversized signs pointing to the cloakroom and not-so-subtle pleas for donations with a suspicious looking fifty quid note taped to the front to make you feel guilty. And poor. Instead, you are greeted by shopping trolleys filled with soil and germinating weeds, and mangled skeletons of cars minus their wheels and dignity. Many of the spaces are converted industrial buildings and naturally ooze the stark-warehousey vibe that larger commercial galleries work so hard to emulate, then there’s the converted pubs and schools. But don’t be fooled, this map is not exclusively for small, obscure art spaces, Tate Modern is included in the Bankside hub, as well as the Bold Tendencies exhibition (housed in a multi-storey car park) in Peckham. The work exhibited covers a wide range of the artistic spectrum, in the same way that the map covers a wide range of spaces: here are a few titbits to whet your appetite. Bearspace recently exhibited a show by Jane Ward (below), whose work consists of large, multi-layered, digitally printed canvases where the ink is then dissolved in places and reworked. The result is a dream like, ephemeral world that you can get lost in, the kind of image where you would see something new every time you gazed into it.
Hatch Space showed ‘Bridging the Gap’ a collection of works including contoured, geographical looking ceramics and a short film about the inaccuracy of the media, using snippets of news coverage and programmes. Jochen Klein’s photographs showed images of snowy mountains which on closer inspection (and a sneaky glance through the exhibition catalogue) turned out to be made from kitchen foil. Just when I thought this was going to be a nice break from arty pretence, the artists’ blurb explained how the foil really represented our perception of nature and the elements through illusion. Or something. I just thought they were cool, dinky little tin foil models. Also, there was a large jam jar stuffed with an image of a human hand. APT gallery showed Space, an installation in response to the landscape, created by young people with learning and physical disabilities as well as artists with the use of cardboard and masking tape, among other things. So if you’re looking for an alternative to the East End, maybe you fancy something a little closer to home, or maybe you fancy a trip on the DLR, where if you’re lucky you can sit at the front, then go to the South London Art Map website. Here you can download your map and check the online calendar for upcoming exhibitions and events. Get your explorer head on, and dredge up those distant memories of orienteering from school, just swap the orange flags and whistles for galleries, and the Mountain Rescue speed dial for TFL.gov. uk. www.southlondonartmap.com
South London Art Map
TTER ART SPO
words: Eleanor Davidson
Name : Joram Roukes Lives : In the city of Groningen, the Netherlands. Formats : Uses mostly oil paint working on very large scale canvases as well as drawing and collage. About : Born February 25th 1983 in Lelystad, the Netherlands. Joram left for Groningen at age 19 to attend the School of Fine Arts Minerva. Here he got his BFA in 2006 and in 2008 was awarded a starters stipendium, with which he set up an AIR in Brooklyn, New York. Joram is inspired by banal everyday live that reflects our modern western values. From the excesses of consumerism to issues on identity and subcultural life. ‘I can watch commercial television and hate everything about it, then turn my frustration into fascination and work with it. I think that’s a pretty important ability,’ he says. Original works sell for: £2972- £6369. Notable fans: ‘I’m not aware of any celebrities being avid followers or collectors of my works just yet. Hopefully Kanye West will be interested after reading about me.’ Fact : Joram tells us he was a pretty lazy student, wasting a lot of his time doing graffiti murals and only worked hard when it really mattered, though still his graduation project was awarded with an A-minus and a couple of nominations for awards. His next shows : Joram has a group show in B15 gallery in Copenhagen sometime in April. With upcoming shows in May in both the Netherlands as the UK. March 31, 2011: solo show at the International Museum of Art and Science, McAllen, Texas Fall: Solo Cory Helford Gallery LA and Lazerides Gallery, London
PICK OF THE MONTH
Smoke on The Water, A Group Show The Aubin Gallery present, Smoke on the Water, a group show by Fieldgate Gallery featuring work from Stuart Croft, Tom Dale and Alice Anderson to name a few. Richard Ducker, the curator says of the works on show, ‘It appears everybody is watching, or being watched, or wants to be watched. Whether it is reality TV, CCTV, You Tube, there is a sense that life, however banal, is increasingly out there, somewhere else, deferred.’ This group show examines the sense of displacement such a society creates. The above image is by Paul O’Kane and called Carousel.
Beaux Arts Bath
Brian Clarke, Works on Paper Phillips de Pury & Company at the Saatchi Gallery have gathered together a selection of Brian Clarkes, works on paper featuring 100 previously unseen pieces from 1969 to the present day and will be showing them up until the 27th March. Brian Clarke mainly works with glass, colour and light and his paper drawings and paintings have a beautifully delicate quality to them though they are all very different to one another in other ways.
3rd March - 31st March Aubin Gallery, 64-66 Redchurch Street www.aubingallery.com
KEEP YOUR BEADY EYE ON..
Enid Lawson Gallery
The Affordable Art Fair The Affordable Art Fair runs from 10th13th March and showcases all forms of art that fit into a lower price range, ie affordable - get it? It’s a great day out whether you are buying or not but if you are buying you certainly won’t be disappointed with the range on offer or the prices as so often happens when you find a piece of work that you fall in love with. There are also handy late night views for those that can’t make it any other time, these are a tad more expensive but a great evening as you will get complimentary wine while you browse. Weekday ticket : £10 Weekend ticket : £14 Late viewing : £20 www.affordableartfair.com
Dan Wilton Quickly stamping his self taught photography style on the majority of the album covers or campaigns of the music hotlist is Dan Wilton. His use of props and a great eye for composition has proved that anyone can be a photographer these days, so long as you have an eye and an imagination (the later is harder to come by). Dan however has both and it is for this reason that you will be seeing his work in the majority of press/album and campaigns that are shot this year. www.danwilton.co.uk
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Saatchi Gallery, Duke of York’s Sqaure, SW3 4SQ www.phillipsdepury.com
The Vinyl Factory Launches Art Store The Vinyl Factory is this month opening its temporary (note new work for pop up) concept store within the front room of St Martins Lane Hotel. This will be the first time the Vinyl Factory has taken to displaying and selling its art and music in a physical space. Vinyl Factory has built itself a strong reputation for delivering high spec deluxe vinyl editions of records that maintain a high standard of the art components to hand. The store will be open for three months from the 10th March with rotating exhibitions and new edition launches. One example of a new edition available to buy is a limited edition of Duran Duran‘s latest album, All You Need Is Now, with artwork by the acclaimed British artist Clunie Reid, in collaboration with Pop magazine art director Rory McCartney. www.thevinylfactory.com www.stmartinslane.com
Life & London.
words : Charlie Webber | Images : Gregoire Bernardi
A Generation Throwing Their Toys Out The Pram ? The fee any get
student riots, a justification of the university rises, a reaction of a group that canâ€™t think of better way or an excuse for trouble makers to one over on the authorities?
Before you start to read this piece I want to make it clear that I am out to make no enemies. I feel that we should be heard and that we have a right to be up in arms (not literally of course) to a certain extent about the increase in student fees or anything else we fee strongly about. In the same way that the arts council do over their funding being slashed or the National Health Service over having their budgets pulled in. The question I would like to raise however is, are we going about it in the right way and are we sure we have it in perspective? Over the last few months it has been hard to escape the coverage of the student riots which dominated everything from Youtube to the front pages of national newspapers, magazines, debate shows and online blog sites. Whatever your age, whatever your career and whatever nationality you are, almost everyone has an opinion on whether the student riots that took place in November and December last year were justified or not. The one thing that seems to me to be undeniable is that the recent activity seems to have spurred on a young generation of rioters. The different takes between media forms are obvious, the mainstream media aimed at a slightly older audience openly spoke of their shock at the scenes which unfolded in London while the younger magazines and blogs have tended to be pro student protest and (like a proportion of the rioters) anti police, concentrating on how liberated the unheard generation have now become. ‘We are not limited to our online communities, we are here, always have been, we have been wronged and now we must be heard!,’ seems to be the message many if these publications are giving off. The important thing to remember here, I think, is the difference between the word riot and the word protest. There is a reason that the student riots were most widely referred to as riots rather than protests. The reason for this is protests (like the ones experienced in 2002 and again in 2003 against the Iraq war) tend to be largely peaceful, well organised and controlled. They are, more often than not, supported by the police, the public and the powers that be in this country. For the freedom of speech and the right to argue for what we believe is surely one of the main reasons this country we all live in is known as Great Britain. For this, we are very lucky. It only takes a quick flick of the Metro on our morning commute to see where freedom of speech has gotten the civilians of Libya. Media black outs and the internet being cut off are just a few of the extreme results for the people protesting against their government. As well as being cut off from the rest of the world those taking part in the protests were treated in such a way that would never happen in this country (on the morning this was written I read one particularly harrowing news story about mourners being shot dead at the funerals of those already killed by government mercenaries). Similar scenes have also been seen across Eygpt and Morocco.
The point I am trying to make is that we are lucky, as a nation, to have a voice and whether or not those voices are heard by the powers that be, we are, in the most part, allowed to express them through protest. Riots however, are something different altogether. Riots often involve brut force, utter chaos, damage to public property and often a disrespect for governing bodies (aka the police). The problem with the recent stands against rises in student fees and school initiative cuts was that what started as a protest soon turned in to a riot and scenes of utter chaos which not only reflected on our generation but also on the cause we were meant to be standing up for. Has anyone yet sat back to look at the magnitude of the cause of these riots compared to those in the past that were of a similar and sometimes even larger natures? Or has anyone really thought about what impact they had, negative or positive, on the generation involved and the government in power? At present I think we can certainly answer to the latter question and that the riots have had little to no impact at all. No changes have as yet been made to the ruling of the student fees and while awareness was successfully raised we have to ask ourselves, to what detriment? Of course the nation (and more importantly the government know how strongly we as students feel about their changes), a few people found themselves in the spot light being interviewed on TV or being talked about in the media and for a few moments the attention was on us and our cause. But not for the right reasons and we made no long lasting change (other than to the appearance of Milbank which after the riots moved on looked a complete mess). Scenes of bus stops being smashed up, people starting fires, rioters turning on the police and each other, a police van being over turned, rioters dressed in balaclavas (if they were there purely to stand up for what they believe in why would they want/need to hide their identities?) and one particular rioter finding himself with a two year prison sentence for throwing a fire extinguisher off a roof. Hardly the ideal way to make what started off as a very valid point. Another example of this kind of uncontrolled protesting were the Topshop riots that took place in January of this year. During a very busy shopping day in Topshop’s flagship store on Oxford Street a friend of mine found herself trapped inside the store as rioters, angry at the revelation that Sir Philip Green had not been paying his taxes, smashed in the doors and jeered at staff and shoppers alike. ‘It came out of no where, I don’t even think the staff were expecting it. One minute it was like any other shopping day and the next people were being urged away from the windows as angry mobs of, predominately male rioters, tried to smash their way in. I certainly pay my taxes and I definitely do not have an off shore account storing all my money in the Maldives so why should I, a normal shopper trying to go about her business, feel threatened and scared?,’ she told me.
To say that this type of protest is a new notion for our generation is, I think, a fair thing to say. Certainly not in my 25 years can I remember people my age reacting in this manner to something they believed in. And yet, for people to say (and they are saying it) that this new reaction in the light of student fees and Sir Philip Green’s unpaid tax has purely derived from a cultureless generation who know little more than what clever PR and advertising pushes on them and who just want to cause problems, is I feel a little short sighted. While the violence experienced during the recent riots is, of course, something to be condemned students rebelling and finding their voice is something we should be celebrating. I do wondering if all those who have looked down upon our want to protest have thought of it this way - perhaps until now we’ve just had nothing to rebel against? The 16-22 year old of today do not need to be sexually liberated, we do not need to rip all our clothes apart and put them back together with safety pins to express our individualism and we certainly don’t have to follow our father or forefathers into the careers that have been previously carved out for us nor do we need to spend our adult years tied to a kitchen sink without hope for a vote. Men are no longer obliged fight in wars, nor do we get banned from listening to music we like or be expected to be married before the age of 24. All in all, in comparison to past generations, we have it pretty good. The main percentage of our generation have got along with our lives, embraced the net we’ve been cast and all it has to offer and largely been brought up in a world full of opportunity. We can be whoever we want to be and in the large scale of things have experienced a far greater acceptance of individual self than generations before us ever did. Until recently further education has been pretty much a given for the majority of us. Unlike our parents generation, we didn’t need to be overly well off to attend a University and get ourselves a degree. That is until recently when we were told (after certain politicians, we’re looking at your Mr Clegg aka the man who wasted our vote, promised that tuition fess would not rise) that we must now pay even more for our education. And this is where it’s all got a bit fucked up. We have been left feeling hard done by because we have suddenly been left in a position where we’ve realised we might actually have something to say about something that greatly effects us and our right to an extended education and yet we are not being listened to. Rightly or wrongly our generation tends to be of the school of thought that we only really tend to speak up about the things that immediately effect us. Most of us are not spending our free time fighting to save the forests or standing up for human rights, but the rise in student fees is something that have decided to speak nice and loudly about because, for the first time in a long time, we can all agree that it is wrong and we want our voices to be heard. Per-
haps, the reason the riots got so out of hand is because we have no other forum in which to express our disapproval. It is often argued by politicians that we are the lost generation, a large percent of us do not vote in local or general elections and on the most part it is assumed that we’re just kind of lazy. I think this is why it came as such a shock when thousands of us took to the streets to stand up for our rights. It took the violence, the odd damaged police van and bit of stick poking in the direction of the Prince Charles’ beloved, Camilla, for people to notice that we have a pretty loud voice when we can all agree on something. The majority of people I spoke to before writing this piece told me they thought protesting was a good way to express a view point, a large number of them also held the same view with a recent poll by YouGov which found that 75% of respondents agreed there were ‘no instances in which violent protest is acceptable in a democracy’. This however is always going to be a problem with large protests, no matter how well intended or how well organised and policed they may be, unfortunately there will also be a certain amount of antagonists within a group of largely peaceful protesters. Much like the people who gate crash a party for the free booze or those who dramatically jump upon the band wagon where there is a crisis, a well publicised event like the student protests can become an excuse for many to cause a disturbance. As much of the footage and images from the student and Topshop riots showed some people are just looking for trouble, they like to fight, want an excuse to cause trouble for the police and have the power to turn what could have been a defining protest against student fees in to something that the majority of protesters will now be ashamed of. Essentially these are the people that render such a protest a big waste of time causing the rest of the public to look on unimpressed, the media to only print pictures of broken windows and people jumping on police vans and the attention to be taken away from the true protest cause. More importantly it makes people forget the overall reason we were there. To argue for change. It will soon be a year since our new coalition government took up their seats in Parliament and in the ensuing months they have given us no other choice but to protest against the reforms we don’t like. After all, as previously mentioned, many of us voted for Nick Clegg on the grounds that he wouldn’t raise student fees - how then, did he expect us to react? For us to roll over and not react, pretending that a vote for him was worthwhile. Surely not? However, while it’s hard not to feel conned by Nick Clegg and the Liberal Democrats and their promise that fees wouldn’t get any higher we need to remember that it wasn’t just the Lib Dems that got in to power, nor to they have the same percentage of voting power as the Conservatives.
The people that made up the student protests created the first riots of this magnitude that Britain has in a pretty long while. The protests we can most widely liken the recent student riots to were those over the Iraq war which saw 36 million people across the globe take to the streets for a largely very peaceful protest. Although it didn’t make the desired impact (we still went to war) it put increasing pressure on the then Prime Minister Tony Blair who shortly after resigned from his role and lead a New York Times journalist to write, that there were now two superpowers on the planet – The United States and worldwide public opinion. The difference between the two though were that the protests seen in 2002 and 2003 remained very peaceful and while they couldn’t prevent the war from happening the voices of all of those people were heard and a certain amount of action was taken. The main reason why the student protests turned a bit sour and were handled by the police in the manner they were was the fact that many didn’t really follow the general rules of a protest. Protests are generally organised by a body or group and it is widely circulated which routes will be taken on said protest or march. A rough estimate of people is easily worked out and this is taken in to account so as not to disrupt things such as our transport, the general public and the day to day goings on of the rest of the capital/town/city. Police are then put on hand in the numbers thought needed to be on call in case a disruptive situation arises. All pretty standard obvious stuff. Then the protest takes place creating a clear and impactful message as to what is being disputed. One of the problems with the student and UK Uncut (the organisation behind the Topshop riots and various others) protests is that they decided to forgo the general run of things and changed the rules entirely, much to the detriment of the protest and general safely of both those involved and bystanders. A main example here is the UK Uncut activity that as mentioned before didn’t really inconvenience any of the people it aimed to (Sir Philip Green was abroad at the time) and as the police stated, ‘departed from the agreed route’ suggesting that it wasn’t even the essence of surprise that UK Uncut was going for but instead a deliberate disrespect for how things are generally done. This ended up in shoppers that were either confused, scared or hugely inconvenienced. So what has it all achieved so far? Not a lot. A look through the history books puts more weight on the argument that protests only really solve problems that are bound to change with economic evolution rather than government decisions like the student fee rises. In the past riots of not quite the same magnitude but the same beginnings were fought over much larger issues. This is
probably why many think that the recent riots were our generation throwing it’s toys out of the pram. In the past violent protests have only been successful when they were demonstrating for extreme wrong doings. During the Brixton riots in 1981 police were attacked with paving slabs, bricks and lumps of concrete. However this was a community that was not being listened to or reported on by the media and constantly targeted for stop and search procedures by the police. The young black community was oppressed and they needed to get themselves heard. Similarly the Suffragettes, the group of women who protested for the woman’s right to vote smashed windows, set fire to letterboxes, chained themselves to railings and defaced buildings and they did eventually, get the vote. The Suffragettes didn’t have much of a choice in the matter, they had no other way to be heard and unlike us, they didn’t even have the right to vote to express their opinions. This is not to say that the rise in student fees isn’t a wrong doing but we do need to keep things in perspective. Recently there were another group of people standing up for the closure of libraries in London, these protesters were happy walking down the main road with their placards and petitions with no one getting hurt and no police being needed. For protests that turn to needlessly and purposeful violence obviously undermines any moral cause. However, once a bill has been passed we all know it is highly unlikely that it will not be changed by either peaceful protest or riot, so is it bitterness that we don’t think things will change that ends up spurring on a crowd? Smashed windows, defaced monuments and falling fire extinguishers all add to a groups ferocity and the problem with riots is that the most un-violent, passive totally upstanding member of the community is capable of throwing a fire extinguisher off a building when carried along by the momentum of a turned mob, as Edward Woollard’s (the guy who threw the fire extinguisher) barrister said when stood in the dock in court, his actions were the result of a ‘short-lived, very swiftly repented single moment of madness’. I am sure that Edward Woollard is now rethinking his involvement in the protest that has landed him in jail. As the judge said when he was sentenced ‘The right of peaceful protest is a precious one. Those who abuse it and use the occasion to indulge in serious violence must expect a lengthy sentence of immediate custody.’ Another example from the history books as to how protests can get out of hand is Bloody Sunday. An outcome of rioting in Ireland that may seem a ridiculously tentative link for the likes of flying fire extinguishers but not so when you realise how it all started. After almost six years of protest and marches organised by the Northern Ireland Civil Rights Association
in the 70s/80s demonstrating against the discrimination against Catholics in electoral boundaries, voting rights and allocation of public housing. In 1969 the marches and protests had escalated to the point where barricades were put up to resist police incursions, three days of rioting ensued and control over the people was lost to the point where the British Army were called in to help get the matter under control. By July 1971 relations between the protesting nationals and the army which had been called in to help had thoroughly deteriorated. In response to the escalating violence that had been produced by what began as peaceful marches internment without trial was introduced and all marches, parades and protests were banned. The internment led to further rioting with 21 people being killed over three days including the soldiers, some by sniper and some by the 180 nail bombs that were thrown. By the end of 1971 there was an area known as Free Derry that was sectioned off by barricades and definite no-go areas for the army, the barricades being impassable even for the militaries armored vehicles and an estimated 4 million pounds worth of damage was made to local businesses. Despite the ban that had been put in place another march was scheduled in January 72 to protest further against the internment. The authorities allowed the march to proceed but only in the nationalist areas of the city and deployed the army to be on hand to arrest any rioters during the march. Later that day 14 demonstrators were shot, 6 being only 17. Although it was ruled some years later that this happened due to a breakdown in command on the forces side 79 the army would not have been called in if the marches had not had become violent. Now, I am not suggesting that this is an apocalyptic view of what will happen if the student marches continue, but I am putting it out there that as more and more people feel the need to descend on mass and protest to no result things could get worse. It needs to be realised that only once in a blue moon will a protest, a riot or a mob change something the government is set on. If we want to be heard we need to be more creative with our planning. Either that or maybe we are going to have to accept that everyone is finding it hard in the current climate, everyone’s lives are changing and perhaps we need to make the best decisions we can based on the situation at hand. If you are not prepared to pay what the universities are then it’s important to remember that there are other options, take on internships, find knowledge elsewhere, teach yourself things from textbooks and the net or swallow hard and simple get on with it remembering that you don’t have to pay it back until you are earning enough to, just like everyone has always had to do it’s just that you will have to pay back a bit more. The silver lining is that unlike many of the examples above we have a choice.
Luke Stephens, our favourite make up artist keeps us in the know when it comes to beauty
A FRESH FACE
Years ago, South Molton Street was a bit of a mecca for makeup artists like me. At one end, you had the South Molton Street Pharmacy (does anyone else remember this?) which had the most amazing collection of skincare and make up at knockdown prices. It was definitely worth the 15 minute queue to get in and grab some high end bargains in the tiny crammed space they had. Sadly, it went the way of most good things and disappeared. And then, a wee bit further up you had another small, but no less great, presence of a second make up shop selling the most beautiful, wearable products by the name of FACE Stockholm. FACE Stockholm sadly slid off of South Molton Street, and became a very limited range in some select beauty boutiques around central London. That too disappeared a little while ago. Well, shout it from the mountains, FACE Stockholm, (known simply as FACE to those in the know. Yeah, of course it’s original!) has returned to the UK. Sadly no shop on South Molton Street, or indeed in London (yet), but it has a beautiful UK website and a fantastic boutique on King Street in Manchester. FACE Stockholm is the brainchild of Swedish-born Gun Nowak and the company is now run by Gun and daughter Martina Arfwidson. As a fashion boutique owner in the 70s and 80s, Gun became tired of being unable to find makeup colours to match the bright neon fashions of the day. Her solution – to make them herself. FACE Stockholm offers a natural, trend-forward look that is simple, clean, gorgeous and fun. The range offers a spectacular spectrum of colours and uses only the highest quality and most natural ingredients. As well as makeup, FACE also do a stellar line in beauty bags and accessories. I spoke to Adele Roberts, the makeup artist/Manager of the Manchester boutique about her favourite products.
Some highlights are:
The Highlighter Quads. £20.00
The Magic Wand. £23.50
Creme Blush in Stockholm £20.00.
Perfect Primer £28.50
Easily carried around in a handbag, each one (Yin and Yan) has four different colours to transform any make up into a shimmering vision in the evening!
Comes in 4 shades, and a handy brush applicator. Adele says ‘Apply under the eyes, for an instant ‘lift’ and use on top of cheek bones for a subtle high lighter effect.’
A very wearable and pretty sheer shimmer of a cheek colour. Adele tells me that this product can also be used on the lips. There is nothing better than a versatile colour!
A clear gel (so that means lightweight girls) primer containing seaweed extract, and Aloe, applied after moisturiser, and before make up to keep your foundation looking smooth, and flawless for longer.
Order online at www.facestockholm.co.uk After their last major character collaboration with the Disney villains, M.A.C have struck out again with a stunning collection of limited edition Wonder Woman themed make up. Late at night, someone sent me a link to a beauty blog which featured word that M.A.C were planning to launch this in the US in early February. When I saw it I actually got palpitations, and suffered a sleepless night. I am such a sucker for packaging, and boy does this collection give good packaging! Every single item is emblazoned with the Wonder Woman comic logo in vibrant technicolour, complementing the colours in the make up. There really is something here for everyone. The collection includes some really fun elements, such as three sets of eye quads in superhero pinks and purples, to really subtle and wearable greens and browns. Opulash in four limited edition shades, and M.A.C have supersized their amazing Lip Glass, also in four shades. Additionally, there are two huge Mineralized Skinfinish pressed powders, for the true glow of a beauty heroine, and two larger than life blushers. They even have two gold Wonder Woman Utility Brush Belts (yes, belts!), one of which is a set of eye brushes, the other a set of face brushes. It is a fabulously comprehensive collection covering every single element of a glitzy, glam to downright powerful make up, and being M.A.C, is eminently affordable, prices start at £10 for the nail laquer.
Opulash in Victorious Purple £14.50
Penultimate Eyeliner Pen in Rapid Black £17.50
Wonder Woman Utility Belt Face Brush Set £39.50
Eye Quad in Defiance £36.00
Refelcts Glitter in Reflects Bronze £17.00
his month, I was invited to join an online dating site. I recoiled at the thought. I’m 23, I’d like to think I can hold off on that for seven years, at least. But, I owe it to you, loyal readers (aka mum, dad, nan and Amie) to test these waters. Mainly so you don’t have to.
I REALLY didn’t want to join the site, namely because I was so scared someone I knew would see my profile and judge me. But I was interested when the lovely man from said dating site invited me to a free pizza date. Basically all the single ladies, all the single ladies, all the single ladies, all the single ladies... Oops sorry... All the single ladies and the single men go to a pizza joint, take over the kitchen and make pizzas together. Romantic? I’m not sure. Free pizza? Yes please. Can you all see the dilemma I had on receiving this kind invitation? Yes, what to wear. Not white, that’s for sure. In the end, I went for a black dress. Shocking, I know. I took along my single friend (I have more than one, although not many) and my, what fun we had... When we arrived the room was about 65% women. The calibre of men was interesting, mostly suited types, older than my 23 years. Anyway, the prosecco was flowing (classy), and it wasn’t long before we were approached by two guys. One was French, one was German. I’d say they were both around 30. Not that there’s anything wrong with an older man (as we’ve all seen/read). The French guy soon went off to take the onions from around his neck and put them on a pizza, or something. And the German guy held back, waiting for them to bring out a bratwurst. He was actually quite a nice guy (I need to stop saying this as it’s evidently a bit of a kick in the teeth for most men). He was very chatty and not socially awkward at all, which, to be frank, is what I was expecting from this bunch. He did however work in a bank, for which I’m allowed to judge... He clearly has no time for women, hence why he’s dabbling in online dating. If you want someone who’s going to turn up late for dates because the FTSE fell 100 points (or whatever the FTSE does) then you’re in luck. Otherwise, don’t bother. (I don’t actually know if this is true, I’ve yet to date a banker... they’re all too busy.) Anyhoo, he asked me and my single friend (she has a name, but I’m not sure we’d still be friends if I was to reveal it) to ‘bake with him’, and that we did. Not before the kind hosts and hostesses made us all don a fetching white apron and hat. Bye bye, beautiful black dress.
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DATING ‘Pizza partners’ Where: a pizza place Date lasted: 3.5 hours Score: 7/10 words : Georgina Childs
I have to say that I was so absorbed in the baking process that I wouldn’t have even noticed if someone was using this opportunity to flirt. There were sun dried tomatoes and caramelised onions, need I say any more? A few more glasses of prosecco later (can you see what they’re trying to do here?) and we were seated for our feast. The disproportionate amount of men was suddenly very apparent and myself and three other single girls sat down (might as well try and make a friend) to be joined by the one good looking guy in the room. In real life you wouldn’t think he was fit, but at such an event he was like Zeus or someone other Greek-God-type-person. He was actually quite a fun guy, who sat and listened to us three girls talk about Cheryl Cole, Gossip Girl and our burning desire to live in New York. After a while I started to wonder if the dating site had employed him to be there to give women hope that they could find somebody fit and funny, online. Imagine that being your job. A few couples seemed to hit it off, the French guy was out of there before you could even say ‘dough’, with some unforgiving girl... probably from Essex. As for little old me, I left happily on my own, full of pizza, prosecco and dread... When I realised there’s only seven more years to prevent this strange set-up of an evening becoming a dating reality. Let’s hope the Banker comes good.
The UK marks Shrove Tuesday with the toss of a pancake, whilst Rio celebrates with Carnival. In New Orleans, the birthplace of Southern Comfort, revellers celebrate with Mardi Gras, a mask wearing, bead throwing, party parade like no other! Southern Comfort is giving you the chance to capture the sights and sounds of this famous party city with a bespoke Southern Comfort bar and Mardi Gras pack- so throw on your beads, put on your mask and enjoy a delicious Southern Comfort cocktail. This bespoke prize pack includes a bottle of Southern Comfort, Mardi Gras beads and masks along with your very own cocktail shaker and glasses - everything you and your Krewe need to celebrate Mardi Gras New Orleans style! We’ll also throw in a £20 iTunes voucher so you can download your very own New Orleans-inspired playlist. So call your friends, gather ‘round and celebrate Pancake Day the New Orleans way. Happy Mardi Gras! For a chance to win please answer the following question: 81 Pancake Day is celebrated on the 8th March, what else is celebrated on this date? a)
Send your answers to whosjack@gmail. com and log onto southerncomfort.co.uk for Mardi Gras cocktail recipes and inspiration. Drinkaware.co.uk – Take it easy, drink responsibly www.facebook.com/southerncomfort
PICK OF THE MONTH words : Adam Roan Henderson
Adam takes on a book a month to judge it for ease of read, quality of content and ability to make you forget the packed sweaty minutes of the commute.
SHIT LIT This month I’ve an absolute corker of a book for you. Many of the novels I’ve written about in previous columns have been bestselling blockbusters straight from the top ten shelves in your favourite bookselling emporium. While this book may well sell by the bucket load, its main thrust pokes fun at those very same massive-selling paperbacks and jumps up and down with glee whilst doing so.
How I Became A Famous Novelist is a searing attack on the cynical production on literary stars and publishing. Lampooning every aspect from conception to publicity it sticks the knife in the industry and then pours salt on the wound. The book follows the trials of wannabe famous novelist Pete Tarslaw as he plans and executes his assault on the best-seller lists. His aims are short and sweet: • Fame – a Realistic amount. Enough to open new avenues of sexual opportunity. Personal assistant to read mail, grocery shop, etc. • Financial comfort – Never have a job again. Retire. Spend rest of life lying around, pursuing hobbies (boating? Skeet shooting?) • Stately home by the ocean (or scenic lake) – Spacious library, bay windows, wet bar. HD TV, discreetly placed. Comfortable couch. • Humiliate ex-girlfriend at her wedding The novelist (the real one) is Steve Hely whose comic credits include writing for and producing shows such as David Letterman and American Dad. Basically he’s bloody funny. In the week of commuting it took me to read this I had to stop an average of twice a day and put the book down, for fear of exploding with laughter on the train and looking like a crazy. It’s honestly is that
funny. My favourite set pieces include a baffling meeting with a Hollywood big shot and the befuddled post-mortem analysis of events at the ex-girlfriend’s wedding. Throughout the book Pete Tarslaw refines his formula for producing the perfect best-selling novel, building up a list of rules. My favourite was Rule 9: At dull points the novel must include descriptions of delicious meals. I hope many best-selling novelists read this and wince in recognition. As I type this I’m eating a pie, a big steaming steak and kidney pie with a crunchy, golden short-crust pastry mantle. Ahem. The descriptions of other novelists he meets along the way, which I suspect are cutting caricatures of real life novelists, are rather cruel but the book as a whole has an underlying tenderness. Despite the cynical way the protagonists launches his literary ascent there is affection for well-written books, beneath the belly laughs and the bile. A hilariously sharp-penned tale of how to bring The Art of War to novel writing How I Became A Famous Novelist is my favourite book so far this year. I’m not going to stop reading ridiculously contrived disposable best-sellers after reading Steve Hely’s witty expose, but I’ll certainly have fun spotting the obvious devices he so accurately mocks. £7.99 paperback published by Corsair.
Sitaaray Nestled beneath the theatre currently showing Warhorse on Drury Lane is Sitaaray a restaurant that you would be foolish to overlook. On a Sunday Sitaaray offer unlimited Kebabs and Curries for £22.95 a head and that is of course the day we chose to go. On a Sunday a feast, and we mean a feast you will leave crawling- is brought, dish by perfectly marinated dish to your table until about 4 courses later you have a curry, or a selection of 3 if you are with people. Providing you can manage it all it is a complete treat. Meat and fish are perfectly cooked on the skewer with wonderful flavours both hot and mild. Even the vegetarian option is brilliant, in fact I, as a meat eater, would be happy with the fully veggie offering so full it is with cheeses and vegetable medleys including a brilliant cauliflower cheese and some hallumi style cheese chunks in the most wonderful marinade. The walls are covered with old and new Bollywood greats getting you in the mood for some theatre, or maybe some partying with TVs on each wall playing Bollywood classics. A perfect option before a matinee show or go for a Sunday feasting with friends. The Sunday £22.95 menu runs from 1:00pm to 8:00pm every Sunday. www.sitaaray.com
Piya Piya The first thing I noticed about Piya Piya, a Thai restaurant near Old Street, is that they have a big television screen showing rolling Sky News on silent. In my opinion, no bar or restaurant needs this, it is an unnecessary distraction and it detracts from the atmosphere/ambience of the place. However, the food we had was good. We chose the set menu and were served a selection of tasty (and nicely spicy) Thai food. The chicken wings in sweet chilli sauce, that came in the starter platter was a sticky, tangy delight. It’s not too pricey either, and we did see some kind of buffet advertised for less than £10. The problem that Piya Piya has though, is that it suffers from an identity crisis. It simultaneously tries to be a bar, a restaurant, a club and it even has a private karaoke room. You couldn’t really fault the food, but it doesn’t entirely feel like a restaurant.. 1 Oliver’s Yard, EC1Y 1HQ www.piyapiya.co.uk
Grand Union The Grand Union is a pub easy to overlook as there are indeed a few of them about. However, there is a very good reason for this - they are very popular and if you don’t know why then you need to read on. The Grand Union chain firstly offer a brilliant cocktail 2-4-1 on weekdays and secondly have the perfect mix of gastro and old pub decor as well as, in all honesty the best burgers I have had in London to date. Huge stacks of meat, lettuce, tomato, different cheeses and in some cases eggs and or pastrami. Finally they make a mean Amaretto Sour, yep they do cocktails to great effect too. The most recent addition to the Grand Union family is the Grand Union Farringdon complete with little cubby holes for drinking the hours away after you are full to the hilt with brilliant burger. It is worth mentioning here that they do do other food, their nachos are also especially good. Grand Union Farringdon : 55 Charterhouse Street, Farringdon, EC1M 6HA
Playboy Returns To London Playboy is to come back to London this June in the form of a Playboy super club. We mention it because it is going to be so 80’s chic that hopefully it will be brilliant and not a Jodie Marsh/Jordan paradise (we hope). The club will be creatively designed to incorporate influences from the original Playboy Club London that opened in 1966, it will also be 17,000 square foot spread over two floors and is being designed by acclaimed London-based architects Jestico + Whiles.
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Shaka Zulu Nestled under Camden’s Stables Market lies Shaka Zulu, the cavernous £5 million South African restaurant. With it’s overwhelming décor: hand carved walls and ceiling panels, escalators and the giant Zulu statues, it’s truly like no other place in London. With the decoration running riot the food has a lot to live up to and I was intrigued to see what would come out of executive chef Barry Vera’s kitchen. I’d been told that South African cooking involved an obscene amount of meat, and I wasn’t disappointed. The biltong that came with a Masai Mara dip was amazing. Vera has found a way to make his biltong on site and it was quite unlike the desiccated packet offerings I’d had in the past. The starters we tried were fish-based; smoked salmon and a tangy pickled sea bass. I enjoyed both, but failed to see the smoked salmon’s place in an otherwise exotic menu. A meaty main course was what I’d come here for, and Shaka Zula didn’t disappoint. The grilled springbok steak was delicious, but we didn’t stop there. Kudu (another type of antelope), boerewurst, ostrich… there’s no shortage of new flavours to try. My guest preferred the darker, spicier ostrich flavours but I couldn’t get past the delicious springbok. Bambi watch out. The biggest hit on the menu for me was a dish called ‘bobotie’. It’s made from curried mincemeat flavoured with spices and chutney, with a custard topping. Yes it sounds strange, but it’s worth making the trip alone, it was extraordinary. For desert we had traditional ‘koeksisters’, sweet doughnuts in sugar syrup washed down with flaming cocktails (did I mention they’ve got a superb cocktail list too?) The restaurant really is a full sensory assault with a surreal Disneyland feel, but the food really blew me away. As long as you’re not a vegetarian or take to hiding behind a cushion from the National Geographic channel, you can’t help but be impressed. Adam Roan Henderson www.shaka-zulu.com
Wisewords Book Club - Carol Dyhouse The Wisewords Book Club is hosted by Alternative Arts, a group based in Spitalfields that put on alternative events around London including an annual programme of diverse events including jazz, dance, theatre, fashion, photography, literature, art exhibitions and festivals. The Club is based at the Luxe that provide brilliant brunches and is as cosy as a place can be for a good old Sunday lounging. This is the perfect suggestion when you are looking to do something in the week that isn’t just sitting in a pub or going to the cinema. Wednesday 9th March 2011 from 6:30pm until 8:30pm The Luxe, 109 Commercial Street, E1 6BG
50’ Beauty bar, Camden A beauty salon dedicated to 50s makeup and hair is set to open at The Blues Kitchen in Camden on Saturday 12th and 19th March. The Beauty ‘n’ Blues pop up salon will specialise in Blues-inspired beauty and Rockabilly glamour and will be run by London vintage styling experts, Lipstick and Curls. The salon will offer a variety of vintage make up looks and hairdos, all inspired by the glamour of the 1950s and 1960s and is being launched to coincide with The Blues Kitchen’s Big Night Out, which takes place at The Garage on Saturday 19th March. Featuring over 12 acts, The Blues Kitchen’s Big Night Out will feature an unrivalled line-up of some of the world’s finest bands and musicians so the salon will be the perfect place to preen yourself if you’re heading down to the event. As well as offering vintage favourites Lipstick and Curls have devised two new looks especially for Beauty ‘n’ Blues. The Shangri-La will be a back-combed look similar to a beehive, perfect for those who want to channel 1960s girl group glamour. And The Rockabilly which will feature a Betty Page style fringe or 1950s curls, the ideal look for practicing swing dancing moves. For Blues Kitchen Big Night Out ticket holders, these looks are available from £10. For appointments : www.lipstickandcurls.com Blues Kitchen, 11 - 113 Camden High Street www.theblueskitchen.com
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Who's Jack Magazine Issue 46