/ ISSUE 54/55 . NOV/DEC / 2011
FOR THE REST OF US
Welcome to a bumper November/December edition of Jack. We’re sorry for those few that didn’t get the memo and have been asking where this issue is. We have been so busy with the web relaunch with a small team that we put these issues into one to give everyone a little breathing space over the transition. And what a transition it has been! We now have a spangly new site complete with dedicated home pages to each subject we cover, extensive event listings and as of now a blogline. If you are wondering what a blogline is then is it our version of a bloggers network with the only difference being that when you sign up you run your blog from our network, giving you our name in the title to help traffic and enabling your content to come directly onto our website. Fun times. If for what ever reason you’ve not got yourself to the site yet I suggest you do now and take a look. We’ll see you there.
8. Fashion For The Boys The Peacoat 10. Hanging On Rooftops Womens Fashion Story From PC Williams 20. Jack Loves Fuct 22. Designer Vs High Street Are the two simply merging into one? 24. Decayed Glamour Womenswear fashion story 36. Colour Menswear fashion story
44. Introducing Marcu Foster 46. Review One Liners 47. The Maccabes Their next album is where it all hangs and all changes 52. Dave band Picks 53. Lana Del Rey The girl the angels are helping 56. Gig Etiquette Dave goes through some dos and dont’s
ART & DESIGN
58. Mark’s December Film Round Up The films you want to spend your money on this month 62. Santa, The Good, The Bad and The Ugly Mark splits up the best and worst of the festive film offerings 65. Rosamund Hanson We speak to the lady making all the TV comedy waves 69. I Am Jack’s Future Our monthly feature piece from those boys over at Heyuguys.
73. Introducing Chris Bracey 76. Art Spotter Post Modernism 79. Who’s Taking The Micky Now? We look at the part Mickey Mouse playes in contemporary art
LIFE & LONDON 82. Which Way To A Better Life Tamlin’s monthly column 84. Room With A View London’s best views 88. Beauty Christmas party make up 94. Esme, Moving House 95. Christmas In London
/ TEAM JACK / CONTRIBUTORS
Editor : Louise O-F email@example.com
Dept Editor : Laura Hills firstname.lastname@example.org
Film : Mark Williams email@example.com
Contributor: Jon Lyus
Contributor: Amie Corry
Contributor : Joe West
Music : James Lynch firstname.lastname@example.org
Film Online : Matt Hamm email@example.com
Layout: Jack Walker
Stylist: Rickardo Maxwell
Dating : Georgina Childs
Make Up: Luke Stephens
Music : Charlie Allen
Styling : Faye Heran firstname.lastname@example.org
Art: Eleanor Davidson
Styling : Jo Bevis email@example.com
Music: Rory Broadfoot
Columnist : Tamlin Magee
Columnist: Esme Riley
Potographer : Harriet Turney
Contributor music : David Macnamara www.andeveryonesadj.com
Contributor : Matt Bass
Photographer : Tracer Ital
Photographer: James Lincoln
Photographer: Barry Macdonald
/ THE CREDIT STUFF
/ HOW TO GET INVOLVED
Cover Image : James Lincoln The Jack-Father : Edward Fitzpatrick //
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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.
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t .twi g w w w osjackma wh
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b .face jack w w w whos
FASHION FOR THE BOYS Wrapped Up Warm
James tries to dress the male and this month goes for a traditional naval look that keeps the water at bay and the warmth inside.
With the days darkening and the nights turning to frost laced arctic expeditions from one pub to another it is time to think of warmer things. I don’t mean simply, trying to imagine that instead of dying from frostbite while waiting for the bus home you are to think you are instead on a Hawaiian beach, playing cricket with The Saturdays… I am talking about the much more mundane task of choosing a winter coat, something which may not seem initially that exciting but is definitely something that your mother will be pleased about. If only so that she has some idea about what to buy you for Christmas but more because she is concerned about your health and whether you’re eating properly.
Hitting the high streets and it’s not hard to navigate your way to bountiful pea-coat treasure, as it is a recurring classic item of mens outerwear every year. All Saints, have a drab yet stylish number in their Prior Pea Coat which comes in my favoured charcoal colour. Topman has two traditional navy pea-coat designs to choose from, which from where I am standing have very little difference between them, aside from one having a smaller collar than the other and H&M have come up with a simple design that is just as uninspired, the imaginatively named ‘Coat.’
Anyway, let’s get back to keeping warm and what’s the best jacket for that : my suggestion is the classic Pea Coat. Somewhat unsurprisingly, as an item of clothing that started off life as uniform for American and European navies, they are really well put together and hardwearing coats but with the added beauty of actually looking very smart. Little has changed in the pea coats design and it should be a formal double-breasted design with six buttons down the front fastening and an optional fastening around the collar. Traditionalists will argue that in true naval style pea coats should only be available in either navy or black which is all very well but if you want to really get your money’s worth out of it then I would hunt around for a grey or charcoal version which may upset those salty old sea dogs but will satisfy you and your mum, especially if she is buying it for Xmas.
Getting back to the safety of your laptop and ASOS has two really stylish and quite original takes on the pea coat for your perusal. The first is the Clayton Pea Coat from Denim and Supply by Ralph Lauren which takes the classic lines of the pea coat and drops them lower down the design, giving the navy coat a wider and deeper neck that is accessorised with rather glamourous gold buttons and military style banding around the sleeves. Also up from ASOS is the Nudie Pelle Pea Coat, which comes in a rather controversial oatmeal with brown buttons… something that would make Captain Hook choke on his cigarette holder. For those looking for something even more original and slightly stranger, look no further than ol’ Vivienne Westwood. Her Double Breasted Navy Pea Coat is exactly as you may imagine from the description but is made from the kind of material that will make you look like a toy wooden soldier and for some reason it has a belt around the collar fastening, which cannot be that safe!
As with anything that makes its transition from military wear, you can snap up vintage naval-issue pea coats from specialist army surplus stores on the high street and online. You can also find them in vintage/retro clothing stores such as Rokit and Beyond Retro as well as any of the many that line Brick Lane and the streets surrounding the capitals curry mile.
So, put a Pea Coat at the top of your Christmas list and you will be rewarded with a classic outerwear item that can be dressed up or down and your mother will be happy that you are clad in a warm, sensible jacket… just don’t team it with a pipe and a stripy t-shirt otherwise any sailors you bump into may be left rather pissed off and distinctly Unhappy with your choice.
Hanging On RoofTops
Photographer: Jeff Hahn Stylist: PC Williams Hair / Make-up: Adjhani Barton Model: Cara G @ Tess Management Stylist Assistant: Christina Daly Special Thanks to Charlie Pates
Headpiece; James Hock, Dress; Tosha, Braclet; Aldo, Ring; Topshop.
Headpiece & Neckpiece; Two Weeks, Swimsuit; Sumarie, Chiffon Skirt; Bitchin & Junkfood, Socks; Trasparenze @ my-tights.com <http:// my-tights.com> , Shoes; Carvela @ Kurt Geiger, Bracelet; Mimco
Earrings & Necklace; Mimco, Glasses; Aldo, Ring; Rachel Freire, Leather Corset; Bitchin & Junkfood, Metal Corset; Rachel Freire, Leggings; James Hock
Headpiece; Two Weeks, Leather Jacket; Rachel Freire, Fur Stole; Beyond Retro
Bra & Scarf; Dirty Pretty Things
Leggings; American Apparel, Bra; Dirty Pretty Things, Scarf; Stylist Own
uct are keeping a low profile, in so much that only snippets of their most recent collection are coming out and their website has little to no information about them on it. What we love about this though is the way they are selling the brand. On the Fuct website you have no choice but to sit through a nicely shot intro to the clothing that leads you into a grainy full screen site that states : WHEN I WAS A DEER IN THE FOREST I SAW MAN AS GOD AND THATâ€™S YOUR RIGHTFUL ORDER I CAME TO YOU WITH ALL THE LOVE IN MY HEART FOR I WAS FOR YOU AND YOU SLAUGHTERED ME
t c u F
Fuct also do exhibitions under their self made Love Awareness program. The bomber shown above is from the AW/11 range, SSDD (Same Shit Different Day). The collection also has a good selection of shirts and coats with the main focus being on outerwear. Also in their current range is the much needed and very stylistically important, wool peacoat as well as a nylon varsity jacket, seersucker work jacket and quilted hunting jacket. www.blog.fuct.com
words: Francesca Baker
It’s been the case for a while. In fact, and
really it’s old news that the coolest of the cool are now to be found in ‘E’ postcodes. But now it’s the top end fashion pack, those with the pounds to spend and the labels to flash as well as style credentials, are finally putting down roots in East London following those that initially moved their because it was the cheap option. Fuelled by investment and gentrification projects, the East End has long shaken off its barrow boy image. Amongst the graffiti clad walls, galleries such as the White Cube showcase works by Damien Hirst and Tracey Emin. Interspersed with market stalls are the likes of All Saints and Cath Kidston. Dotted between curry houses and bagel joints, pie and mash shops and proper boozers you’ll find swanky restaurants and swish champagne bars. Luxury fashion houses Christian Louboutin is set to move to Redchurch Street, Prada is on the house hunt, and Vivienne Westwood is planning on setting up shop in Shoreditch. Eschewing the traditional central London location for something which whilst certainly on the up will still be seen as a little, well downmarket, by much of the fashion world swanning around Paris and Milan. Shoreditch may be cool, but Fifth Av it’s not. So has high end fashion lost its way? So much so that it now wants to hang out on the high street?
Louboutin et al will be in crowded company. Developer Hammerson is a planning £485 million project south of Shoreditch High Street to have 630,000 square feet of offices and shops. It is being touted by industry insiders as an opportunity for retailers to attract a new affluent crowd, one with an edgy hipster appeal. This seems to be the key mind shift, a change suggesting high street and high end may be on the same wave: seeing top designer names not only as artists with a vision, but retailers, shops with clothes to sell, rents to pay, and crucially of all profits to make. As businesses, high street and high end both have the same goal. Would they have come to these postcodes in the less salubrious days? Of course not. As much as fashionistas work best when they are at the front of the pack, they need a certain framework to work within, to legitimate it. Bishops Square, the smooth and arguably soulless development between Brick Lane and Liverpool Street has seen rents double in the six years since its development, from £65 per square foot to £135. Compare this to the cost of retail space on Bond Street or Oxford Street though, where a square foot will set you back closer to a grand, and you can start to see the pound signs racking up. Redevelopment of the area has resulted an emerging affluence, and transport links mean that it is only a few minutes away from the traditional
fashion houses. Of course it’s not only the pricey fashion houses that have made real estate decisions. Met with raised eyebrows when it first joined the high and mighty on Oxford Street in 20 Primark has the highest turnover per square foot of any retailer. When you account for the fact that the average item costs £4, that’s a lot of footfall. If your customers are cutting back, it makes sense that as a retailer you might have to do the same. Whereas a few years ago flashing the cash was what it was all about, now austerity is a new badge of cool. Leader of fashion’s front foot, Kate Moss, happily mixes high end and high street, Fearne Cotton has been known to go to the shops in Urban Outfitter jeans and Beyonce once wore Topshop. Heck, even the future queen rocks the High Street, although the Reiss dress she wore to meet the Obamas back in May 2011 is slightly more pricey than your average Primark dress, at £175. Fashion thrives on people talking, and crucially people buying, and when the Reiss website crashes the day the pictures appear in the newspapers, you can see why mass appeal starts to light up the brains of high end designers. It’s not just that high end designers want to meet the masses that have made the high street more successful, but that the high street retailers have made the designer style, if not actual substance, seem something they can achieve.
the difference. Remember the fuss when Topshop copied the lemon Chloe dungaree dress and was subsequently forced to destroy all remaining stock, back in 2007? Primark is in regular battles over its copy cat clothes, having paid thousands to the likes of H&M, Monsoon, and the Beckhams. It’s not new, high end designers teaming up with high street retailers to create collections that will get further exposure. Debenhams first welcomed designers into their stores in Autumn 1993 with a small collection of hats by Philip Treacy and evening wear by Ben De Lisi, and back in 1996 Jasper Conran teamed up with Debenhams to create a luxurious fast fashion brand, or a diluted version of the real deal, depending on who you ask. Not everyone has been as forward thinking. In 2008 Donatella Versace was asked in an interview her view on potentially collaborating with H&M, dismissing the idea as one that would only ‘confuse the brand’.
There’s something about supporting your local high street, helping out retailers, and splashing the cash (in a measured manner) locally that has in itself become fashionable. People want to support their communities, and high end designer fashion as always thrived on its inaccessibility, its desire making capabilities. Now people are walking away from the inaccessible, as the High Street has made it far more accessible. Lamented at length has been the fact that we live in a disposable society, but this is good news for the lower priced retailers. Shoppers are doing the maths and realising that if they are going to only wear an item for a couple of months, once or twice, and then throw it away, why spend on it. Fashion comes in phases, swings and sways more than a hormonal teenager, and as such is arguably not worth the commitment. Labour costs and speedy supply chains means that it is not only those in the know with the cash that can have the latest fashion trends, but everyone in proximity of a shop. Being able to produce the same designs but at a fraction of the price is what makes business sense in today’s climate. There’s also a far broader range of styles, cuts, colours on the high street, with more body shapes than the stick being catered for. The catwalks have always been a source of inspiration for high street retailers, but the similarities have become more and more similar, and people are finding it difficult to identify
Three years on and a deal has been signed, with Donatella thrilled that the collaboration will give Versace the opportunity to ‘reach a larger audience.’ Co-inciding with a heavy restructure and 350 job cuts, it seems that the economic angle rather than creative inspiration and direction is what is really pushing this. H&M’s first link up was back in 2004 with Karl Lagerfeld. The buzz campaign around it, and the fact that after only a few hours shelves were bear, something that Lagerfield credits with making him a household name. Arguably all artists have a bit of a complex, and if there are too few people buying your product to even credit you as niche and fashionable, then the next thing to do for an ego boost seems to be appeal to the masses. Of course, fashion is never simple and amongst all this talk that rather than a merger, one (the cheaper) is perhaps replacing the other, sales at the top end aren’t doing too badly. At the beginning of Novemeber Selfridges reported a surge in profits which analysts are stating is due to a surge in the luxury fashion market. But if you look closer it might be that this middle ground is holding sway. Managing director Anne Pitcher however has a more realistic view, and has said the company has because it mixes high-end and lowcost. Primark launched its menswear concessions in Birmingham and Manchester Selfridges stores last month, and Cheap Mondays are now a regular fixture on the Oxford Street store calendar. Where Selfridges goes beyond the bog standard bargain bin is its customer experience levels. Innovotaive window displays, exciting theatre, the upmarket stores tap into that
fundamental factor that keeps people purchasing, the belief that by buying this product they will be one step closer to being the person they want living the life that they desire. Add to this the fact that sales on promotion or at a discount now almost equal those at full price in some retailers, and you can see why people are returning to some of the more upmarket stores. Standing in a queue of forty with hangers clattering around you and clothing strewn across your arms waiting for a cashier who won’t even look you in the eye doesn’t strike the same feelings of indulgence, excitement and delight that comes from buying new clothes. Rather than the high street replacing the high end, a merger of bargain basement and choice couture, top designers losing their edge, or fashion being generally lost, maybe it’s that fashion is finally finding its way to the customer and consumer. Whether that’s through moving to a new side of town, collaborating with designers or offering good value, it all comes down to nice clothes, at a good price, with a bit of customer service. Simple really.
Hennes Designer Collaborations : • Stella McCartney designed a collection of clothing and accessories for Fall 2005 • Viktor & Rolf avant-guarde dutch designers created a collection for Fall 2006 • Madonna - The Popstar designed her own collection for Spring 2007 • Roberto Cavalli The well known Italian designer designed for Fall 2007 and had one of the fastest sell out’s in H&M history. • Kylie Minouge Designed her own collection that debuted in China 2007 • Comme Des Garcons - The Japanese company was selected to guest design for Fall 2008 • Matthew Williamson The British designer was selected for Spring/Summer 2009 • Lanvin 2010 • Versace 2011
Photography: Alexander Kyriacou www.alexanderkyriacou.com Fashion Editor: Faye HĂŠran http://epinettefiles.tumblr.com Make up: Cheyenne Raymond www.cheyenneraymond.com Hair: Meribeth Hasfurther Fashion assistant: Hannah Jenkins Photography assistant: Lucin Marshall Models: Milena, Rosanna and Irene at D1 www.d1models.com Leaf detail dress - Fyodor Golan - http://fyodorgolan.com Pearly queen satchel - Angel Jackson www.angeljackson.com Serpent fascinator and pocket watch - Prangsta Costumiers www.prangsta.co.uk Bow detail driving gloves - Corlette London - www.corlettelondon.com
Irene wears: Ruched dress - Inbar Spector www.inbarspector.com Tornado ring - Fiona Paxton http://fionapaxton.com Sweetie ring - Pippa Small http://pippasmall.com Gold Liberty bracelet - Zoe and Morgan www.zoeandmorgan.com Peep toe platforms - Topshop www.topshop.com Pearl hairpins - VV Rouleaux www.vvrouleaux.com
Rosanna wears: Black feather and fur dress - Kate Wallis www.katewallis.co.uk White liberty bracelets - Zoe and MorganShirt www.zoeandmorgan.com – American Apparell Mutiala black satchel - Angel Jackson www.angeljackson.com Trousers – Asos Beige platform shoesBoots - Finsk www.finsk.com – Beyond Retro
Rosanna wears: Gold sequin dress - Becky Burton www.beckyburton.co.uk Tangerine velvet belt–-topshop VV Rouleaux www.vvrouleaux.com Baseball jacket Peep toe platforms - Topshop Trousers – Asoswww.topshop.com Fur stool with chains - Gisele Ganne www.giseleganne.com Pearl and button bracelet - Yorkshire Pearl http://yorkshirepearl.blogspot.com St Tropez cuff - Katie Rowland www.katie-rowland.com Opera glasses and pocket watch - Prangsta Costumiers www.prangsta.co.uk Vintage handbag - Stylist’s own
Rosanna wears: Peach net and gold sequin top - Becky Burton www.beckyburton.co.uk Claret trousers - asos www.asos.com Jewelled brooch styled as hairpiece - VV Rouleaux www.vvrouleaux.com Pearl and button bracelets - Yorkshire Pearl http://yorkshirepearl.blogspot.com
Jacket – Barbour Blouse wears: – Zara Milena Red Jumper – American ApRussian hat and fur stool - Prangsta Costumiers www.prangsta.co.uk parel Leather pencil skirt - Ada Zanditon www.adaz.co.uk Jeans – Topshop Crystal and pearl necklace - St Erasmus www.st-erasmus.com Vintage ‘30s pearls - Carole Tanenbaum http://caroletanenbaum.com Satchel – Urban Outfitters Tornado ring - Fiona Paxton - Shoes http://fionapaxton.com – Beyond Retro
Lace glove - stylist’s own
White polo – Zara Blue jumper – Aquascutum Shorts – Topshop Wine Boots – Kurt Geiger
Milena wears: Velvet dress and gold/black 80s clutch - Paperdress Vintage http://paperdressvintage.co.uk Red fur stool - asos www.asos.com Jewelled brooch - VV Rouleaux www.vvrouleaux.com Gold and black turban - Beyond Retro www.beyondretro.com Stardust necklace - Zoe and Morgan www.zoeandmorgan.com Bow tie court shoes - Topshop - www.topshop.com Rosanna wears: Claw detail fur stool - Gisele Ganne www.giseleganne.com Vintage silk top - Rokit www.rokit.co.uk Black velvet shorts and gold ball clutch - Topshop www.topshop.com Liberty bracelet - Zoe and Morgan www.zoeandmorgan.com Berry tights - MyTights www.mytights.com Gold and black bow platforms - Simmi Shoes www.simmishoes.com Irene wears: Antique hairpin - VV Rouleaux - www.vvrouleaux.com Black body top - Topshop www.topshop.com Neck armour styled as shoulder piece - Fannie Schiavoni www.fannieschiavoni.com Nude skirt - Krystof Strozyna www.krystofstrozyna.com Papilio gold clutch - Angel Jackson www.angeljackson.com Knee high stockings www.mytights.com Red platform shoes - Kate Kuba www.katekuba.co.uk
Blue check blazer – Rokit Jeans – Urban Outfitters Brougues – Urban Outfitters Shirt – American Apparel
Rosanna wears: Porcelain dress - Jasper Garvida www.jaspergarvida.com Armour cuff - Fannie Schiavoni www.fannieschiavoni.com Irene wears: Rabbit fur jacket and sequin hotpants - Kate Wallis www.katewallis.co.uk Gold and black bow platforms - Simmi Shoes www.simmishoes. com Gold Liberty bracelet - Zoe and Morgan www.zoeandmorgan. com Milena wears: Knitted wire dress - Charlotte Waters www.artsthread.com/p/ charlottewaters Feather fascinator and costume pearls - VV Rouleaux www. vvrouleaux.com
Photography: Christopher Fields - www.christopherfields.co.uk and Susan Campbell - /susancampbellphotography.blogspot.com Styling: Faye HĂŠran - /epinettefiles.tumblr.com and Kofi Owusu Grooming: Thom Ticklemouse - www.thomticklemouse.com at Soho Management - www.sohomanagement.co.uk Models: Jack and Charlie at D1 - www.d1models.com Location: Kingsland Road Studio - /kingslandroadstudio.com Jack wears: Grey mac , Megan Christie, www.artsthread.com/p/meganchristie Black panelled leggings, Rose Dent - http://twitter.com/roseellendent Black industrial boots, Dr. Martins - www.drmartens.com Grey socks, Faulke - www.falke.com
Jack wears: Cap sleeve t-shirt, Matthew Miller - http://mrmatthewmiller.tumblr.com Black panelled leggings, Rose Dent - http://twitter.com/roseellendent Black industrial boots, Dr. Martins - www.drmartens.com Grey socks, Faulke, www.falke.com Black rubber necklace, Evelie Mouila Gold and orange bar necklace, Lily Kamper - www.chelseadegreeshow.org/2010/index. php?id=34&option=com_content&view=article
Jack wears: Paint effect anorak, Alexander Lamb - http://twitter.com/ Lambalexander Denim shorts, Rose Dent - http://twitter.com/roseellendent Aubergine industrial boots, H by Hudson, www.hudsonshoes.com Grey socks, Faulke, www.falke.com
Jack wears: Orange and blue print shirt, Rose Dent - http://twitter.com/roseellendent
Charlie wears: Grey jersey top, Megan Christie - www.artsthread.com/p/meganchristie Rope print leggings, Matthew Miller - http://mrmatthewmiller.tumblr.com Gold chains, Rose Dent - http://twitter.com/roseellendent Aubergine industrial boots, H by Hudson, www.hudsonshoes.com
I am … Marcus Foster. I grew up in … London. My childhood was mainly …
inside my head.
The three words I would use to describe my music are … fun, danceable, soulful.
I mainly write about …
I have different ways of writing songs. Some will be autobiographical, some will be written as if they’re a film, like a narrative. I don’t like to write tunes that are too self-involved. I hope I write stuff people can relate to!
My big break in music came when …
I wrote a song that ended up getting onto the Twilight soundtrack. I got to do a few tours over there because of it. Then I came back and met the Communion Records guys. It went from there.
I’ve been writing songs since I …
You won’t like my music if you …
The first song I wrote was about …
The best review I could read about my music is …
A few things you should know about me …
My desert island CDs are …
I’ve been playing the piano since I was seven years old. I’d listen to my dad’s records, like Bob Dylan and Tom Waits, and just wanted to do what they do. One of the first songs I wrote was a track called ‘Morning Train’. ‘Demons’ off the EP is also a really early one.
I’m best mates with Robert Patterson, you know that fellow from them Twilight movies. And Kristen Stewart has been in one of my music videos. I’m a big Twilight fan, as you can see…
I would describe fans of my music as. …
People who like fun music. Like fans of the Rolling Stones.
In the next few months I will mainly …
be out and about promoting my first album!
You will like my music if you … like the 1970’s Deep South.
don’t like the 1970’s Deep South. It’s not the most popular type of music right now, but hopefully people will clock onto it.
Ah man, that’s so hard! There are so many different styles to my music, I couldn’t just pick one thing. I’ve got ballads but I’ve also got crazy fun. There’s something for everyone. Hopefully that. Oh god! Well, anything from Tom Waits I’d take. Van Morrison. Nina Simone, of course. This is so hard. Five or six years ago it would have been the Notorious B.I.G. It changes all the time.
My motto is …
A life motto? I guess, ‘if you believe in something…’, oh that’s so cheesy! I can’t prove if my motto works. ‘Always eat an apple a day.’
You can next come and see me live in London at …
At Dingwalls in Chalk Farm on November 23rd.
The only thing you need to know about me is …
I’m part of the Foster Season. First there was Mark Foster of Foster the People, now there’s me. I’m trying to reclaim my name. And lets not forget about Marcus Mumford. The delights of Marcus Mumford Foster the People. Marcus the Fosters. Sorry.
I couldn’t make music without …
Sculpting. I studied it for six years. That’s also what I do.
www.marcusfostermusic.co.uk image : Tom Bunning words : Daivd Whelan
INTRODUCING Marcus Foster
BIN: Insane Clown Posse And Jack White Lick Mich Im Arsch
Oh My God… I hope this is a joke of some kind, although I’m not sure on what or any level at all a ‘song’ apparently ‘performed’ by two face-painted ‘rappers’ and that bloke with a guitar from The White Stripes/The Raconteurs/The Dead Weather/a James Bond theme tune, which is based around the frankly ridiculous notion that Mozart had a freaky thing for arse-licking is in any way funny. Unless the punch line is the end of Jack White’s credible career. www.insaneclownposse.com
BIN: Coldplay Mylo Zyloto
There are many events that happen throughout your lifetime that you will always be able to recall; Princess Diana’s death, your first kiss, 9/11, having your trousers pulled down in a youth club at the age of 13 and the first time you heard the fragile emotion of Coldplay’s Parachutes. Unfortunately 11 years on from it’s release and as he continues successfully fulfilling his insufferable role as the new Bono, Chris Martin wants to rip that memory from you and replace it with this vapid pop nonsense. www.coldplay.com
BURN: J. Cole (Feat. Jay-Z) Mr. Nice Watch
Hova’s young protégé has just released his first album and like a proud father watching his sons first football match or school nativity play, Jay-Z has turned up, better late than never and during a wellearned break from riding around with supermodels in a chopping up Maybach has recorded a swag-tastic guest verse, which is unsurprisingly mostly about watches but lifts this dubstep-influenced beat to a new level. J. Cole still has some distance to go before he matches his (adoptive) old man. www.jcolemusic.com
Music Review One Liners
BURN: Funeral Suits Health
While not exactly breaking any new ground, Funeral Suits are at least filling the voids left by Editors and White Lies and while we all wait for their return, the Irish three-piece are living up to their name and creating epically mournful synth pop but with a bit of a bite at least. Featuring military drums, massive deep synths and an almost Smiths era Morrisey squeal… this will do just fine. www.myspace.com/thefuneralsuits
BOOM: Childish Gambino CAMP
The black Spider Man is back and after touring across the US, Donald Glover has finally put together a proper album that you can buy and keep on a shelf and everything, not much is known about the tracklist as I write this but if the intensity and lyrical agility of the only confirmed song so far, Bonfire, is anything to go by than this release is another crowd pleaser for the kids and critics alike. www.iamdonald.com
NT YO WE WA
BOOM: Florence And The Machine Ceremonials
The flame-haired Kate Bush/Enya crossover is back, floatier and hippier than ever but for Florence and The Machine’s second album, the machine has been cleaned up and polished somewhat, with some tracks sounding like they came out of the recording sessions for Lungs and others like they could have been made for Beyonce. This is no bad thing, especially for Flo’s foray into the US market and what really sets aside anything on Ceremonials from normal chart fodder is that voice of hers. www.florenceandthemachine.net
Think you know a fair bit about music? Don’t really know anything other than that you love it? Well we want your mix tapes. 6 tracks, a sentence in explanation for each and a title is all you need to send us. Tracks either need to be all sound Cloud searchable or all You Tube searchable. One or the other. Our favourites will go online each Thursday as a new regular ready for the new website launch. Email mixtapes to : email@example.com
The Maccabees words : Laura HIlls | images : James Lincoln
It’s been a busy few years since The Maccabees first hit the music scene with their debut album, Colour It In, back in 2005. Between playing every festival thinkable, battling for radio play, having their songs featured in TV shows and adverts, touring the world and proving to their fans and the music industry that they deserve their place in the charts they’ve not had much opportunity to take some time off. So when, two years ago, the Brighton five piece announced they’d be stepping out of the limelight for a bit their fans were naturally left a little surprised. Were they off on holiday? Pursuing other projects perhaps? The answer to all the speculation was no, they were in fact off working on their third album. Unlike their previous two albums which were released in quick succession they wanted to take their time on this one and it was worth the wait. Due for released on 9th January they say Given To The Wild is their best album to date and from what we’ve heard they’re probably not wrong. Just a few weeks after they finished recording we met up with Orlando, Felix, Sam, Hugo and Rupert (although Rupert was so late to the shoot that he missed the interview section of the day) to find out why it was so important to take their time on this release, the changes they’ve witnessed in the music industry over the years and why the fans wont have to give up dancing just because they’ve calmed things down a bit…
Arriving at the Dalston based studio one-by-one The Maccabees greet each other with laughs and hugs. For a band that don’t spend much time apart they certainly still appear to have things to catch up on. Whenever a spare moment comes up between interviews and picture taking they’re standing together talking about new songs, their weekend plans, the music they’re listening to and the TV shows they’re watching. Between the banter and chatter it’s not hard to see that this is a band who are best friends. They egg each other on as they pose for their individual pictures and when we do the interview they finish each others sentences. And they’re excited, very excited about their impending album release. In fact it’s one of the main topics of conversation for the day, that and their recent ‘comeback’ live shows. ‘We knew that with this album we wanted the sound to be different to our others,’ says Felix, the natural spokesperson for the group who answers all but a couple of questions throughout our interview. ‘We made the decision to stop touring because we knew we couldn’t make the album we wanted to if we were still working all the time.’ After playing their final show together the group went off in their separate ways to begin work on the new tracks. For their previous albums, they tell me, they’ve worked together crafting songs in a studio but this time they wanted to do things differently. ‘We all went off either individually or in pairs and began creating the skeletons of what would finally be our third album. Then when we were all happy with what we’d come up with we rented out a studio and spent our days there working together and finishing them off,’ says Felix. ‘With our other albums we’d always created them using just our instruments but for Given To The Wild we taught ourselves how to use computer programs like Logic to give the songs a different vibe. It was the first time we’d worked like that, recording bits from our own homes but it was nice and I think the music is better for it. In our eyes this is easily the best album we’ve ever made,’ continues the bands front man Orlando. Unlike when we’ve spoken to other bands in the past The Maccabees insist that it wasn’t a case of recording as many songs as possible and then deciding what would work on the album. ‘It always makes me laugh when these bands say they recorded 60 songs then worked out what 12 to put on the album,’ says the bands guitarist, and Felix’s brother, Hugo. ‘We just don’t work like that. We find it really difficult to even
produce three minutes of music we’re really happy with so the tracks that appear on the album are the bits that were deemed workable. All the other 30 second pieces of music we made that weren’t working just got ditched. You have to be a bit like that or you’d never get anything done.’ From our first preview listen of Given To The Wild it’s obvious that the new songs are a clear progression for the band. They sound more raw, the lyrics perhaps more thought out than on previous efforts and it’s definitely more grown up. In other words they’ve done what all good bands dream of by the time the notoriously hard-to-release third album comes about, they’ve progressed. ‘It feels so special because it’s the first time we’ve had the confidence and ability to make something like it,’ smiles Felix. ‘When we were making our past albums we were taking the necessary steps to make the music we needed to make rather than concentrating on making our best material. Now we’re at the stage in our careers when we can take a bit more time to achieve a proper record rather than us sitting in a room together and limiting ourselves to producing songs with basic instruments and strict deadlines. I listened back to the album from start to finish the other day for the first time and I was just so proud of it. I don’t think it’s us being naive or because we’re on a high from just finishing it, I genuinely love it.’ And they’re not the only ones. Recent reviews of live shows where the tracks have been previewed to the fans for the first time have been heaped with praise for the new material and the way that, despite it’s calmer sound, it manages to sit nicely beside their old, more upbeat material. ‘Those shows were the first time we’d really played the new material to anyone, most of our friends and family hadn’t even heard it,’ says Felix. ‘It made the live shows so much more nerve wracking but also so much more exciting because they were totally new and no one knew what the audiences reaction would be, but it was great. It proved to us that we don’t need to change our live set up to accommodate the new tracks because although when you listen to the record they sound much calmer the audience can still sing and dance along in the same way they could with our other stuff.’ So different in fact is the new sound that the band did have initial reservations about how their fans were going to react to it, ‘there was an initial worry that it might
not translate to the fans we can’t deny that but it’s obvious that at the heart of them the songs are still us, The Maccabees’, Felix continues. Despite releasing their first album six years ago now the band have been together making and performing material for ten years altogether. Unlike some other bands who achieve commercial success instantly, gaining recognition and a big fan base has been a slightly longer process for The Maccabees. Arguably they’ve gone about their career in the best possible way, earning their stripes performing in small venues and working their way up to playing some of Europe’s biggest, achieving higher chart positions with every single and album they release and gathering more and more fans every time they put out something new. For that reason it’s likely that they have more longevity that most of their musical peers who achieve commercial success with their first album and then filter out as the pressure to perform
increases, although the band say that commercial success and chart positions have never been terribly important to them. ‘We’ve been around for quite a while now and I can honestly say that chart positions don’t really matter that much to us,’ explains Orlando. ‘It might be easy to look at the change of sound on the new record and say we’ve mixed things up to be more successful but that’s not the case at all. We make music to keep us happy and hopefully the fans will like it too if it does well then that’s a big bonus for us.’ The Maccabees have lived and recorded through some big changes in the music industry over the past ten years, most notably the social network era which has allowed bands quicker than ever before to create their own fan base and get noticed by the all important record labels. It’s a change that the band say has been the biggest they’ve seen in the industry since they first started out. ‘Before we got signed we played a lot of gigs to half
empty pubs, perfecting our set and our sound and trying to get noticed. It seems obvious to me that now-a-days as soon as a band seems vaguely set and ready to go the record label jump on them. It’s a much quicker process now than it was when we were starting out. Now a new band can play a gig on any given day and have 400 people from the record industry turn up to listen to them. That was totally unheard of in our day,’ remembers Felix. ‘I think a lot of that is down to the internet,’ interjects Orlando. ‘When we were starting out people were like, ‘have you heard of Myspace?’, all that stuff was such a new concept back then. Now the industry are much more knowledgeable about what can be achieved by using the internet to market a brand, they know how to make something go viral, they know that people can make their own fan bases by using social networks and things like Youtube and they work it to their advantage. People don’t need to guess
as much as we had to. Having said that, things are changing so quickly that it does become pretty hard to keep up and I guess while it can help bands and the record industry they are also very much at the mercy of it too.’ Creatively The Maccabees have always been a band that tried to push boundaries. Aside from their songs other creative processes have always been very important to them too. From their music videos to their album covers they’ve always tried to do things that are a bit different. From being painted by the critically acclaimed artist Boo Ritson for the Wall Of Arms album cover to their latest team-up with the British sculpture Andy Goldsworth who’s work can be seen on the new album sleeve, they’ve never been ones to stick themselves on an album cover and let that be that. ‘It might have something to do with the fact we all hate being in front of the camera,’ laughs Hugo. ‘It’s nice to get artists involved with our work
though,’ says Orlando. ‘Our team up with Boo [Ritson] worked so well that we decided to go down the art route again with the new album. The image is of a sculpture by Andy Goldsworth I actually first came across it when I was on a walk with parents in the area when I was younger and I remembered it when we were trying to work out what to put on the new album cover. Luckily Andy was pleased to be involved and gave us the go-ahead to use it. The image does have a deeper meaning to us but we don’t want to share that as it’ll get over analysed. But I will say that I don’t think there’s any other image that could represent the record better.’ As well as their artwork the band are also heavily involved with the making of their music videos often recruiting creative friends to help them out with the process, ‘that’s one of the main privileges we have, being a position where we can approach amazing people to work with us on creative projects,’ says Hugo. ‘We always try to be really hands on with things like making our music
videos however technology has evolved so much and none of us can pretend to know much about the video making process so we tend to turn to our friends and other people in the industry to help us out. We’ll always come up with the initial brief though,’ says Sam. Right now the band are about to begin working on a concept for the video for the first song off the new album, Pelican and from then on it’ll all be go-go-go for the band. With a 2012 touring schedule that’ll see the band play the UK, Europe and America it doesn’t look like The Maccabees are due to be taking anymore time off any time soon. ‘That’s OK with us though. We’re honestly happier than we’ve ever been and when we kick off touring it feels like it’s going to be really worth while because more people will get to hear the new songs,’ says Orlando. ‘Hopefully they’ll go down well and we can continue to grow on our fourth album but until then we’re just going to enjoy the feeling that we’re all finally content and making the music we’ve always wanted to.’
DAVE’s Band Picks
(terrible title for a column) words: David Macnamara
Fanzine The recent palava over the 20 year anniversary of Nevermind brought something to my attention, I’d never actually listened to the whole thing. So there I found myself, literally 20 years and 6 days late to the party, and I was bored. Yup, I left Lance Davis’s Summer Luau, the greatest party ever, early. See I was always a bit more partial to Pavement, Dinosaur Jr. and Big Star when I thought about early nineties US guitar music; grunge just left me cold. Fanzine are an extension of this, they’ve got a bit more about themselves than say The Pains Of Being Pure At Heart, but not a million miles away in terms of sound anyway, from Yuck. And the thing is, they’re not even from America! I could get 1 bus to their ends! Anyway more lo-fi guitar pop like this, less flannel shirts. Please! The book of Face will provide you more: www.facebook.com/fanzinetheband
The Savage Nomads The Savage Nomads......now there’s a name that you can wear with pride on a t-shirt. If I close my eyes and try to picture the Savage Nomads, I see burly men with beards to their guts, wearing metal hats with horns attached. However when I open them, I’m presented with something very different. I caught The Savage Nomads live very recently.... actually I’m just on the bus home from their show. What was great to see was a band unafraid of a guitar solo, a chorus, and a front man aware enough to know that not everyone was there to see him, but had enough charisma and presence so that those who were there won’t forget him. The Savage Nomads sound is an even pitch, somewhere between a Weezer and a Franz Ferdinand. These are good things to be, take my word for it.
Cattle & Cane I find myself writing their name so much when I talk about influences that I’m beginning to worry that The Mumford and Sons may actually be influential! This is a shit state of affairs to be in, and one that must be rectified before it’s too late. However, I’m beginning to worry that that time may have already come and gone. Cattle & Cane are from Middlesbrough, can belt out a folk ballad as well as the best of them, however their best moments come from when they are at their most voluminous. Maybe it’s a bit more Arcade Fire-y, than Das Mumfords’, but when they peak on that chorus, if the room is small enough, you can actually feel the weight to the air, as it lifts off your skin and permates through the ceiling. The chorus’ they’ve got can literally raise the roof. And conversely, their more tender moments will have you weeping like a fish. Bloody bi-polar, indeed. More from Cattle & Cane at www.cattleandcane.co.uk
Tashaki Miyaki I caught these guys a couple of weeks ago support Sound Of Sweet Nothing label mates Gross Magic and it’s been a bit of an illicit love affair since. I struggle, hiding unexplainable reciepts for Travelodges and dinners for two, suspicious behaviour considering I’m incredible tight when it comes to wining and dining a new band. They have to woo me! But this Californian duo have won me over with dreamlike, lucid vocal and Philius Spector-ish, Death Valley dry drum sound. A month ago they dropped 3 tracks on the world in the form of Somethin’ Is Better Than Nothin’ (like being told you’re pretty, when you know you’re really not) Best Friend (er...basically the kind of song you want to hear your best friend sing you) and a sumptuous version of the Everly Brothers All I Have To Do Is Dream. It literally makeths the writer swoon. I’m off to the 24-hour petrol station to buy flowers and Hagen Das. Check Tashaki Miyaki out at www.soundcloud.com/tashakimiyaki
Sissy & The Blisters Would it be wrong of me to form my entire opinion of a band, based purely on one song I heard, going against every honest fibre in my being that suggests to me that I am wrong, wrong, wrong!! The following 105 words would suggest to me that if this is wrong, then I don’t want to be right. When I first heard of Sissy & The Blisters, I had their debut single back in February, and I just couldn’t really get over the name.Their new EP, Let Her Go, which came out this week on Fierce Panda however has changed my whole perception, man! Where once I meh’d at dense 50’s rockabilly drone rock, now I woop and fist-pump to dense 50’s rockabilly drone rock. Except now I hear chorus’s, colour and menace. I am a shallow human being, I react to fads and passing trends. I make no apologies for my transience. But right now, Sissy is the one for me. Blisterisation can be unleashed here: www.soundcloud.com/sissyandtheblisters
Niki & The Dove I very often go through phases of being. For most of 2010 I longed to be European, speak Spanish, visit Italy, eat frogs legs, that sorta thing. Before that, it was West Coast, burritos for dinner, ripped denim sorts, fake tits......Niki & The Dove make me want to up sticks and fuck off to Stockholm. For some reason I feel if you’re reading this mag, you should already by aware of Malin Dahlstrom and Gustaf Karlof, but for the uninitiated, I’ll break it down for you. Niki & The Dove have been knocking about for nigh on a year now, put singles out on Moshi Moshi previously, however they have just put out their debut release on Mercury Records. That delicious major label dosh has been put to good use, their first video for The Drummer, taken from The Drummer EP, is a theatrical beast, all fire and nordic goddess-ness. Niki & The Dove are future pop at it’s finest, adventurous in a Gaga way, without the ADD. Alas for me, now I must head to IKEA, house needs a makeover. Check them out at www.soundcloud.com/nikiandthedove
Lana Del Rey 53
The song itself told the story of a girl damaged by a neglectful love, sung by a voice that was as delicate as it was mesmerizing, listening to the song alone would encourage you to imagine Lana as a something of a shrinking violet, as timid as her style of singing. The accompanying video however told a different story. All pouting lips, sultry glances and big hair the self-made video showed clips of Lana singing seductively in to her webcam, sliced up with footage from old movies and home videos, the girl who appeared on the screen was perhaps not how many would have imagined. As interest in the singer grew as did the amount of information about her and it soon became apparent that this wasn’t Lana’s first foray in to the music industry. She’d previously released an album back in 2009, the albums art work (which can still be seen on Amazon) shows a very different looking Lana to the one we’d been introduced to, back then she had short blonde hair, wore minimal make up and the pouting lips (which it later transpired were collagen filled) were nowhere to be seen. It comes as no
When it comes to dividing opinion very few have been quite so successful in the past few months than Lana Del Rey. The self dubbed ‘gangster Nancy Sinatra’ burst into people’s consciousness seemingly out of nowhere a few months ago when her song, Video Games, became an unexpected Youtube hit. Picked up by music blogs and websites all over the world it wasn’t long until the song went viral and everyone began to develop their own opinions on the 24-yearold American singer. - words : Laura Hills -
surprise that an artist who previously failed to make it in the industry would go away, give themselves a make over and try again but it felt like there was a bit more to Lana’s story. Things didn’t seem natural. We decided to interview Lana a few weeks after Video Games first surfaced at the HQ of her PR company, after all it’s unfair to judge a book by it’s cover and this girl clearly has talent. It was time to ignore the hype and the speculation and find out what Lana Del Rey was all about for ourselves… After waiting for nearly half an hour I am collected and taken upstairs to a large glass office in middle of the room, Lana joins shortly after, coffee in hand her thin frame almost drowning beneath the baggy jeans, cropped cardigan and piles of jewellery she wears for our meeting. She’s undeniably beautiful and despite her 24 years of age has a child-like quality to her that obviously instills a sense of protectiveness in her team who check she has everything she needs and regularly peek though the glass to make sure our interview is going OK. After introductions are out the way we get
down to business, through giggles, long pauses and an air of awkwardness about her she tells me about her music. ‘I guess my songs are pretty autobiographical, they’re about finding true love as that’s one of the main things I can relate to. They’re inspired by old cinema and they’re like film scores laced with hip hop beats ,’ she says, I imagine not for the first time. Fiddling with her rings and often staring off in to space as she answers the questions – a sign she’s thinking rather than a rudeness – she tells me about growing up, a topic she’s been out spoken about on more than one occasion. ‘I’m originally from Lake Placid in New York. It’s pretty far away from the city so I grew up in a fairly quiet area. I finally moved to the city at the age of 18 where I started performing at open mic nights.’ It’s a hard image to imagine, the girl sitting in front of me is timid and shy and several times throughout our chat exudes self doubt, and yet here she is telling me that at the age of 18 she was confident enough to move herself to the heart of New York and get herself up on stage to perform her songs? ‘Trust me, it was a terrifying experience! I still find it so scary getting up on stage, even today,’ she says with a hint of sadness. ‘It’s frustrating because everything else comes naturally to me. I’m a natural writer, I’m a natural singer, but I find performing very, very difficult.’ Born Lizzy Grant, Lana changed her name when she first started to take her music career seriously. Wanting to find a name that sounded more exotic and ‘a better reflection’ of her music she settled on the title Lana Del Rey. ‘I wanted a name that had more in common with my music and with me as a person. I think it sounds very glamourous, it’s aspirational and that’s how I want my music to sound. It sounds like the sea to me, free and flowing,’ she explains. It was at the age of 18 and after learning how to play the guitar – she no longer plays, ‘I’ve got my fake nails done now so it’s kind of difficult’ – Lana decided to take what she describes as ‘a blind leap of faith’ into trying to make a career in the music industry. Regularly writing and recording songs and uploading them to Youtube with her now infamous home-made videos Lana began to build herself a strong back catalogue of music. ‘I was making these songs that I knew were good but no one really wanted to listen to them,’ she says. Despite not wanting to open up about her previous record (her choice or that of her record label I am still unsure) it’s not hard to find out that her first album, Lizzy Grant AKA Lana Del Rey, was recorded with hot shot producer David Kahne. So how does she think her music and herself as a person has changed since making that record? ‘When it comes to my style and what my influences are, nothing’s change. But the themes I sing about and how I’m presenting myself has definitely
changed,’ admits Lana. ‘You know what’s funny? I actually think I’ve regressed from my first album with the music I’m making now. On my last album I tip toed around some more philosophical themes and questions about the meaning of life and wanting to find true love but my new material is much more simplified. I guess I don’t really talk about anything all that important on my new album,’ she says of her official debut release that’s expected to be put out in early 2012. Ironically enough, Lana tells me, after meeting with and being rejected by several record labels she found an inner strength and determination. ‘All I wanted was to be a good singer but no one ever wanted to listen to me. No one cared. So I got to the point where I wasn’t really thinking anymore about making music that pleased people, I was just trying to make songs for myself and that’s when I recorded Video Games.’
The only explanation I can find for why it’s done so well is that the angels must have decided it was time to give me a break. Video Games has been one of 2011’s biggest hits, earning her radio slots, a performance on Jools Holland, several high profile interviews and the accolade of having the song covered by Bombay Bicycle Club in the Radio 1 Live Lounge where the bands lead singer Jack Steadman dubbed it his ‘favourite track of the year’. Surprisingly enough Lana says she didn’t ever intend for anyone to hear the track let-alone for it to be the song people knew her for. ‘I didn’t think Video Games would do big things for me at all,’ she giggles. ‘The only explanation I can find for why it’s done so well is that the angels must have decided it was time to give me a break. It’s funny people say if you put the ground work in eventually things will
happen to you but that’s not always true, I’m just glad Video Games has finally got me noticed.’ And noticed she was, at present the song has over 3 million views on Youtube, it has also earned her a record deal with XXX. And yet, despite all this, Lana is, or at least seems to be, unconvinced that she’s finally ‘made it’. ‘I mean, I’ve still got a long way to go,’ she whispers until she’s barely audible. ‘I put it up and never imagined many people would listen to it so when I saw the views go from none to 300 I was delighted because that’s way more people than I know, then I saw them rise to 500, then to 2,000 and then eventually they were going up by like 20,000 views a day. I couldn’t believe it.’ For most aspiring artists this would be a real point of celebration, a time to celebrate with friends and family, but not for Lana. ‘I didn’t really have anyone to call, I mean who was going to care? I was pretty sure my ship had sailed a long time ago but I’d always prayed I’d eventually find success. What’s happened to me since then could really make my life a lot easier. You know my life has never really been…’ she says before trailing off in to her own world only snapping back to reality when I ask my next question. To what extent is her new image been thought out? ‘Contrary to what a lot of people think about me I didn’t actually have much time to work out how I wanted people to see me. I just dress and act to reflect my music. I would actually rather my music be heard and I was never seen. The internet has allowed people to be so cruel and everyone wants to pass judgment, I wish I didn’t have to see all the negative things people say about me. My music is my life, I don’t want the way I look or my personality getting in the way of this opportunity because to be honest, it’s all I have.’ And with that time is called on our interview and it’s time for me to head off, still none the wiser as to who Lana Del Rey really is but certain of one thing, whatever you think of her, and whether or not she really is as uncontrived as she would like us to believe, one thing is undeniable, she has a voice good enough to compete with any other female singer out there at the moment and she seems willing, despite her blinding self doubt, to do anything to get to the top. And that’s exactly where I imagine she’ll end up.
Gig Etiquette Gone Wrong
words: David Macnamara
I should point out, that from the very outset, I’m a placid dude. I queue, I put-up, I accept most things, because invariably there’s little that really gets on my tits. If something does, I adjust, I accommodate and I learn to avoid. However, this past week I was introduced to a new evil in this world, an evil that I worry may prove to be my downfall. “Attractive 30 year old man arrested and charged with assault and battery, in an unprovoked, iPad related attack at Roundhouse”, the Camden New Journal will mostly likely read. Page 8, no doubt, I’m not that big a deal. This is my Room 101 moment, my whinge, my gripe, my inconvenience. Perhaps it is the onset of age, as I watch the live music experience I know and love, ebb away. It’s a phenomenon that I’d only just witnessed and it drew a red mist. PEOPLE. RECORDING GIGS. WITH THEIR FUCKIN’ iPADS!!!! If you’ve ever read a book by a guy called Clinton Heylin called Bootleg: The Rise & Fall Of The Secret Recording Industry, he goes into great detail behind the history of the illicit concert recording. How a whole secondary recording industry was sustained by people recording concerts themselves, and then pressing live versions of the shows. In the mid-70’s this practice was embraced by some bands, (The Grateful Dead being a prime example, try and find something from their ‘77 tour, it’s far out!) seeing it for what it was, an opportunity for their fans to hear their live show, whereas otherwise, they wouldn’t have been able to even imagine the sonic wonders that they created on a daily basis from Toledo to Pensicola and all points in between. Skip forward 40 years and we are now thankfully at a point where you really don’t need to even leave the confides of you own bedroom to have more than a passing familiarity with the live exploits of your favourite band. Every two-bob one man jobby has a live DVD, so why
would you bother? And then consider if you will the very nature of an iPad. It’s not a phone, it’s not even a camera, I have no gripe with someone recording a moment to say they were there, hell I do it myself, but why? I mean really, why? I’ve often puzzled at people who go to a gig and will record every single moment the band is on stage. What happens when they go home? The popular thing to do would it seem be to upload it straight onto YouTube and then....wow just watch those views roll in. Can you feel that? Keeping you warm, isn’t it? How was that gig last night? Yeah it was great, I was right up the front, but I was pretty much just watching it on telly, ignoring my friends and scowling at anyone who dared motion towards throwing beer at me. Did I mention I am a massive bellend? No? I am a massive bellend. Whatever happened to experiencing a gig without having to record it for posterity? Is it really that good? Really? I mean, wouldn’t you rather have the rush, then just the taste? You’re like a chicken shit drug user. If you’re going to do it, don’t waste your time on half tabs, do a full one! I stood behind the inspiration to this piece a few weeks ago, and how could he have possibly enjoyed the show? I watched what he was recording too, it was mostly made up of the back of people’s heads. And it was then that I realised that this wasn’t the first time I’d seen this, and then I noticed it more and more. A little piece of me died. My youth, my truth, my beauty, withering away, while it was recorded for the Internet to comment first and write lolz. Danny Glover might just have been right all along, I am too old for this shit. David has agreed to donate all proceeds from this article to the family of the guy who’s iPad he chucked onstage at last months Noel Gallagher concert at The HMV Forum. Who’s Jack magazine consider the matter now closed.
FILM DECEMBER Ding dong merrily on high, hark the Herald Angels sing and jingle bells, Batman smells. Itâ€™s that time of year again, when Nan eats a few too many sprouts, blames it on the dog and then nods off halfway through The Great Escape. Thereâ€™s never a better time to slope off to the cinema than when the cabin fever of concentrated time in the homestead is starting to send you a bit stir-crazy is there?
Girl With The Dragon Tatoo
words : Mark Williams
Cowboys and Aliens
ell, happily enough there are
plenty of opportunities for such a
In A Better World
cinematic great escape of your own this December. So put down that fifth mince pie and get yourself off to your local cinema. And if you get there by dashing through the snow, in one horse open sleigh, and you just happen to be laughing all the way, then all the better.
Another Earth (2nd Dec) www.foxsearchlight.com/anotherearth
Las Acacias (2nd Dec) www.vervepics.com/lasacacias
Another Earth is one of those refreshingly original films with a very modest budget that could well launch the career of it’s director, Mike Cahill. It’s a sci-fi of sorts, but only in as much as there’s a second Earth that has been discovered and contacted, upon which there is an alternate reality. The narrative takes place on our Earth, and we follow a young woman named Rhoda Williams who is racked with guilt over a car accident she caused some years earlier.
Probably the most intriguing film out in December, Las Acacias is an ambling road movie, set in Argentina. A truck driver, named Rubén takes an extra passenger on his journey to Buenos Aires, and although he does not instantly warm to mother Jacinta and her 8 month old child, the gruff silence eventually gives way to conversation and the three begin to bond a little on their road-trip. Don’t expect a film with twists and turns, or hectic editing to bounce things along, this is a slowburner, and received a vast amount of praise at Cannes.
Her identity was not made known to the man whose family she killed in the accident, as she was a minor at the time, and after a spell in prison she goes to his house to apologise. But she loses her nerve and instead pretends to be a cleaner offering her services. The two form a close relationship over time, but Rhoda wins an essay competition in which the prize is a trip to the other Earth. Does she escape the reality of what she has done on this Earth and go exploring the other? And does Simon Cowell exist on this other Earth? She probably doesn’t care so much about that, but the non-existence of the high-trousered douchebag is something we can all dream about isn’t it?
We Have A Pope (2nd Dec) www.habemuspapam.it Habemus Papam, is the original title of this Italian comedy, and those who know Latin will already be fully aware that it translates, funnily enough, to ‘We Have A Pope’; the phrase used when a new pope is announced to the masses from the Vatican Balcony in St Peter’s Square. Except, normally when that announcement is made, the Pope in waiting doesn’t have a crisis of confidence and/or faith and do a runner. Which is how we begin here.
Senior Italian actor Michel Piccoli plays the new Pope who has a sudden attack of nerves, and director/actor Nanni Moretti is the psychotherapist sent in to try and help the elected head of the Catholic church. Despite outcries from various religious quarters in Italy that a figure such as the Pope should not be the subject of a light-hearted comedy, this is in no way a film which attacks Catholicism in any serious way. It simply explores themes of a loss of confidence in ones self or in one’s beliefs at a fairly crucial point in life, i.e. when you’ve just been announced as the new Pope. The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo (26th Dec) www.dragontattoo.com David Fincher, director of Fight Club and The Social Network is the creator of Hollywood’s take on The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo series, based on the best selling novels by Stieg Larsson. The entire trilogy has already been made once, in Swedish, with Noomi Rapace playing the heroine of the tale, Lisbeth Salander. However, Fincher has inevitably got a bigger budget, better equipment and a wider range of actors to play with here, so it will be very interesting to see what he comes up with.
The Salt Of Life
Of the original three films, the first was by far the best of the trilogy, a self containted action thriller, whereas the second depended on you wanting to see the third and the third depended on you having seen the second. Hopefully these three will be a little more balanced, with Daniel Craig as Mikael Blomkvist and Rooney Mara almost unrecognisable as the fiercely independent Lisbeth. The main plot of The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo is that investigative journalist Mikael Blomkvist has been hired by the head of a family to re-visit a forty year old murder, dating back to 1966, when his niece disappeared under mysterious circumstances. He is helped by Lisbeth Salander, a hacker working for a security firm in his work, and between them they uncover a web of lies, deceit and corruption that appears to spread far beyond the family in question. Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol (26th Dec) www.missionimpossible.com Tom Cruise dons his biggest Cuban heels again as Ethan Hawke, for the fourth Mission Impossible film in the franchise, Ghost Protocol. Brad Bird is on directing duty, an interesting choice as he is a man best known for directing Pixar films such
as Ratatouille and The Incredibles. Still Tom Cruise can be a little over-animated at times (har har) so maybe he will be perfectly at home here. Even Simon Pegg gets to hold a gun and look moody as Benji Dunn, and with the other main co-star of the trailer being Jeremy Renner (The Hurt Locker), the conspiracy theorist might suggest that casts for Tom Cruise films are now being picked based on relative height to Tom Cruise. However, we’ll leave that kind of aimless tittle tattle for the pages of glossy shlebmags and concentrate on the film. As you’d expect from a Mission Impossible, it’s slick, fast-paced, saving the world stuff. Double crossing, secret pasts and higher-ups in suits giving stoney-faced orders. The Kremlin has been bombed and somehow the blame has landed at the feet of Ethan Hawke and his Impossible Mission Force team. Now they have to go underground to figure out who the bad guys actually are, with the risk that if they are caught, they will be arrested for inciting nuclear war.
Sherlock Holmes: Game of Shadows (16th Dec) www.sherlockholmes2.warnerbros.com It’s a blockbuster-tastic month in the cinema this December, and so to complete a hat-trick of big budget spectaculars we have Sherlock Holmes: Game of Shadows. Robert Downey Jr. and Jude Law are back as Holmes and his trusted accomplice Dr Watson, after the massive box-office success of the first. And this time they’ve got Noomi Rapace (the aforementioned original Lisbeth Salander) with them, playing Sim, a gypsy fortune teller, who can handle herself in a scuffle or two. Criminal mastermind Dr Moriarty (Jared Harris) is up to his dastardly old tricks again, seeking to cause havoc and see European princes bumped off, all in the name of his mysterious evil plans, which Holmes has to figure out before he can do much about trying to stop them. Throw into the mix a bit of Downey Jr. cross-dressing with all the Victorian-era exploits and you have yourself a fine bit of family Christmas fun. Elementary really, my dear Watson.
DVD ses Relea
Harry Potter: 8 Film Boxset (Nov 28th)
We dare you to watch them all back to back. You might start shouting ‘Expelliarmus!’ at random people though.
Hangover 2 (5th Dec)
Couldn’t they have thought of a better name? What about Hang Harder? Or Well Hung?
Captain America (5th Dec)
Good old-fashioned superhero caper, which is actually much better than most of them tend to be.
Any Pagan worth his salt will tell you all about the Shaman Santa, the mushroom gatherer who would visit members of his village in the coldest, darkest part of the year and bring with him some psychotropic treats to help them through the winter. This took place hundreds of years ago in cold Scandinavian countries where the nomadic people lived in yurts, the entrance to which was what we would think of as the chimney. The village shaman, wrapped in heavy clothes, and probably bearded, would drop in through the chimney on his rounds of the locals to give his mushroom gift. Then he may well have imbibed with the family if the mood took him, and a while later been off on his way again. You can imagine how someone might have seen the flying reindeer! But alas, this is theory only, the truth lost in the mists of time, gone but not forgotten, much like Nicholas Cage’s ever receding hairline. What we do have though, are a variety of film interpretations of Santa Claus, so let’s have a look at some of the best of them.
But, there are three things they would do well not to forget. John Lithgow as the cigar chomping, mwahaha-ing evil uncle B.Z., determined to make a big fat profit at Christmas time, regardless of child safety. Santa himself is played by David Huddleston aka The Big Lebowski, minus the wheelchair and trophy wife with ten green toenails. There’s even a place for Rocky’s grizzled old trainer Burgess Meredith, as one of the elder elves. He’s probably the one that keeps Santa in shape, pushing him to his limits as he trains for the festive season by running up large flights of steps and punching hanging reindeer carcases. Probably. This Santa is definitely a good Santa, as he forgives Patch the Elf (Dudley Moore) for leaving him to go into cahoots with B.Z., chasing after him to save Patch from certain death and even befriending a homeless ragamuffin along the way.
Super 8 (12th Dec)
Some pesky kids are making their own film when a mysterious train crashes nearby and a load of weird shit starts happening to the town.
Miracle on 34th Street (1947)
The Good Santa Claus The Movie (1985)
Kill List (26th Dec)
Really excellent British horror which features Michael Smiley, aka Tyres from Spaced! words : Mark Williams
Some may decry Santa Claus: The Movie as a load of saccharine old guff, and they may have a case. The whole film looks like it’s been filmed with a tub of vaseline over the lens, and it’s more moralistic than 10 episodes of Saved By The Bell smooshed into one.
It’s undoubtedly a classic movie of the Christmas variety and Kris Kringle (Edmund Gwenn) is a department store Santa that people are starting to suspect may be the real thing. Some base their opinions on his never ending cheeriness, others cite his un-capitalistic tendencies as the behaviour of someone who is not quite normal. But whatever the truth, he soon starts to get a lot of attention in his role as Santa at Macy’s. A sign of a true good guy, he takes his brief incarceration in Bellevue Mental Hospital and subsequent court case in his jolly stride. Everyone has a merry Christmas and our faith in the human race is
Santa: The Good, The Bad and The Ugly words: Mark Williams
As sure as night follows day, and as sure as Cliff Richard calendars will fly off the shelf at this time of year, kids all love Santa Claus, Father Christmas, St Nick, or whatever incarnation you prefer. What’s not to love? Jolly fat man, brings presents, likes mince pies, has a flying sleigh. And usually, he gets the kind of happy-go-lucky, ho-ho-ho-ing portrayal in films that you’d expect from such a universally popular fellow. But not always. Some films like to take our image of Santa and twist it right before our innocent, doe-like eyes. Why would they do such a thing? WHY? Well, because it’s fun. And to be honest, Santa’s origins may not be as wholesome as certain fizzy drinks manufacturers would have you believe. There’s been a very strong argument floating around for years that he was once a provider of hallucinogenic mushrooms in days of yore.
restored as we shed a tear of joy into our third helping of Christmas pudding.
South Park: Woodland Critter Christmas (2004) OK, so this one is not actually a film Santa, but he has to get a mention for one of the most delightfully twisted episodes of a cartoon ever; Woodland Critter Christmas. In a nutshell, Stan is tricked by some cute woodland critters into helping them protect their saviour from the evil Lion who keeps killing it. However, it turns out that the cute forest creatures are actually Satan worshippers and their saviour is the Antichrist.
When all looks lost and it appears that the Antichrist is to be born, thanks to Stan, and bring with it a terrible reign of darkness, Santa Claus appears from the sky in his sleigh, with a pump action shotgun and swiftly executes all the critters and their saviour, thereby preventing inevitable doom for all. It’s Santa the South Park way.
The Bad Bad Santa (2003) Billy Bob Thornton plays Willie, a foul mouthed, amoral conman who spends a few weeks a year dressed as Santa, in order to rob whichever department store is lucky enough to have employed him on Christmas Eve, and disappear. His partner in crime is Marcus, who plays his Grotto elf, as they leave children mildly traumatised in the run up to Christmas. One such child has difficulty understanding that Willie is not the real Santa and tries to befriend him. Does this innocent child’s friendship set Willie on the path to being a better man? No, he robs the child and steals his grandmother’s car.
Santa’s Slay (2004) What do you get if you cast ex-wrestler Bill Goldberg as a deranged psychopathic Santa, who is, in this story, the only son of Satan? You get Santa’s Slay, a little known and not really all that successful film, in which Santa takes great pleasure in laying the smack down upon just about everyone, whether they are naughty or nice. In a variety of inventive and bizarre ways, such as setting a woman’s hair on fire and then drowning her in eggnog. Nice.
The Ugly Trading Places (1983) Dan Aykroyd plays Louis Winthorpe III, an incredibly rich and privileged human being, working for Duke and Duke as a commodities trader. Duke and Duke are two men who decide to pull the rug out from under Louis, as part of a bet to see if the much poorer, but street smart Eddie Murphy can effectively run their company. So, with their places traded, Eddie Murphy lives the good life and Louis is thrown out of his house onto the streets. He’s not too well adapted to life outside of his mansion and struggles, but luckily finds help in friendly prostitute Jamie Lee Curtis. A couple of suicide attempts and a brilliantly grim scene eating a stolen salmon whilst dressed as Santa ensue, before Winthorpe starts to get his act together and work out a plan to get things back to the way they were.
Rare Exports (2010) Set in the snow covered fields beneath the Korvatunturi mountain, a team of explorers discover something that has been frozen beneath the ice for hundreds of years. However, when a herd of deer are killed and children start going missing from the local town, it is feared that something has been discovered that was meant to stay buried under the mountain. And that it has, for they have discovered the icy prison constructed to hold a mythical Santa Claus that, instead of rewarding the children who’ve been good, punishes those who’ve been bad. This film deserves to be a bit of a Christmas cult classic, so if you fancy something to cut through the usual festive schmaltz, give Rare Exports a watch.
As an actress Rosamund Hanson is probably most instantly recognisable from her days playing Smell in the hit Brit film, This is England and its equally successful TV spin off, This is England ’86 but if she has anything to do with it that is all about to change. At the age of 22 Rosamund is about to embark on a new chapter in her life, having wrapped filming for Shameless as well as finishing off a Christmas special of This is England she can now be seen starring in Ricky Gervais’ new comedy, Life’s Too Short, a show in which she plays the hapless, deadpan receptionist Cheryl Wilkins, it’s the show she is hoping will help people see her as a more diverse actress. words: Laura Hills images: James Lincoln hair & make up: Beauty Box, Crouch End
When we meet up with Rosamund at a photo studio in East London it quickly becomes quite evident how much her image means to her. After several outfit changes and a quick hair cut later (she’d had it done the day before but wasn’t happy with it) she tells us about how she wants to be seen in the same light as people such as Emma Watson and Carey Mulligan, ‘They’re such good examples of classic British actresses, they’re glamourous and capable of playing lots of different roles, that’s how I’d like to be,’ she says. Throughout the shoot she’s constantly worried, albeit with a sense of humour, the the pictures reflect her in the way she’d like to be seen (aka nothing like her best known role, Smell). After much toing and froing we find a concept that she’s happy with and we’re away with Rosamund posing in front of the camera like a pro, surprising really seeing as this is her first proper magazine shoot. After we finish several hours later we grab a drink and chat about the role that changed her life, working with Shane Meadows and why she isn’t in any hurry to work behind the camera… Growing up the daughter of a fashion designer father Rosamund
always knew her future would lie in the creative industry, always appreciating fashion but never having a true passion for it Rosamund decided to pursue acting. ‘It was an obvious choice to me. Even from a young age I was always in my own little world, playing around, dressing up and pretending there were people with me. I was very theatrical,’ she laughs. ‘I’ve always had a keen eye for fashion and the cut of clothes so I definitely have an appreciation of the industry but it was never an area I wanted to get into. Acting however… once I’d found the fourth wall I didn’t want to go back.’ It was at the age of just 11 when Rosamund took her first steps to making acting her career. After receiving an application form her school to join the Nottingham Television Workshop it wasn’t long before she was living and breathing the environment she eventually wanted to end up in. ‘My parents were never pushy at all but when I told them I wanted to be an actress they didn’t want to stand in my way. I eventually auditioned and out of the hundreds of people that applied I somehow managed to get a place. Being an actress made sense to me because life was always a performance,’ Rosamund remembers. Despite the years learning her craft as part of a school that also molded and taught the likes of BAFTA nominated Samantha Morton, it wasn’t until she got her first acting job that the learning really began.
While studying for her GCSE’s Rosmand was asked to audition for a role in the film by, Shane Meadows the British director who was at the time making a big name for himself for his kitchen sink style of realism. The film was This is England and Rosamund ended up winning the role of Smell. ‘I call This is England my Univeristy because I learnt so, so much there. Stuff that if I didn’t know it now I could never do my job,’ says Rosamund. ‘I was in my last year at school when I was asked to audition for the film at the Television Workshop. When they called me back in for a second audition I couldn’t believe it and then when I actually got the part I really, really couldn’t believe it. It was a complete whirlwind. I celebrated by calling all my friends and relishing in the fact I could tell them I’d got my first big break and then I went on holiday to Austria with my family, script in hand and spent a few days relaxing and learning my lines before coming back to begin work.’ Starring alongside the likes of Vicky McClure, Stephen Graham and Thomas Turgoose and working with Meadows, one of the biggest British directors of his time Rosamund found herself on the film
Dungarees : Rokit / T-Shirt : Wildfox
‘That was one of the most nerve racking days of my life but I had to keep remembering that even though I was performing in front of one of the funniest men in the UK I was there for a reason and I had to impress him.’
set working with people much older and much more experienced than she was at the time. ‘It’s odd because although I was a lot younger than everyone I still felt very at home with the people I was working with. The thing that first drew me to the film was the sense of loyalty and love within the gang of friends and by the end of filming that was just what it was like with the actors, we didn’t really spend much time apart.’ And what was working with Meadows like? ‘Just so cool. If it wasn’t for him I would never have got my big break so I owe everything to him,’ she says. ‘I describe Shane as being like a Jackson Pollock painting because he’s always building on things and adding new layers and that’s one of the biggest things he taught me. He taught me the importance of building and working on a scene until it’s perfect. Nothing is set in stone for him there was always room for us to have some input or for us to change things around if it wasn’t working, it was a valuable lesson as an actress to learn that things can always be improved on.’ When the film was released in 2006 it became one of the biggest hits of the year, attracting people in their thousands and even picking up a BAFTA the film resonated with people in a way that lots of others haven’t. ‘None of us could have predicted how well it would do,’ says Rosamund. ‘Everything from the sound track to the cinematography is beautiful and I think that’s one of the main things that appealed to people. It’s just a beautiful piece of work to watch.’ In the years after wrapping the film Rosamund spent her time performing in plays and working on projects in her hometown of Nottingham but despite the films success she says the change to her life was fairly subtle. ‘At first nothing really changed, I didn’t get recognised all that much nor did I get any other offers of work. I don’t think I even had much of a concept of how big the film really was until a friend of mine was on holiday in Thailand and called me to say they’d seen that it was being shown over there, it never occurred to me that people outside of the UK would be watching my work. That was odd.’
Unbeknown to the cast at the time some four years later the show would return but this time in a TV format for a four part series on Channel 4. Like the film before it the TV show proved to be a huge success with Rosamund’s character taking on a lot of the major, most dramatic scenes. Another of Rosamund’s biggest parts to date came after the TV show aired. It was the role of Bonnie in Shameless. ‘I got some great feedback from This is England ’86 and my work on it lead me to get the call to ask me to audition for the part. I was amazed to get on the set and realise that the whole thing was inside,’ she remembers. ‘The whole cast there were amazing. Naturally I was nervous because I’d watched those people for years on TV so it was weird to be there working with them everyday but they were all so nice. I literally chatted non-stop to everyone whether they were actors, in the crew or just working in the office. It was exhilarating.’ Unlike before Rosamund’s TV success has meant that she now gets recognised more than ever – ‘I try and be as discrete as possible but if I’m walking down the road on my own I do get people approaching me’ – and the attention is only about to get even greater, at the time of interview the first episode of Ricky Gervais and Stephen Merchant’s new comedy has just premiered to mixed reviews. It’s a show that everyone seems to have an opinion on, some saying it’s one of Gervais’ funniest shows to date while others accuse it of exploiting the shows main star Warwick Davis, a dwarf actor. ‘It’s a great TV show, of course it is, it’s written by Ricky,’ she says. ‘I think I got the role because there’s elements of me in the character I play although she’s much more scatty than I am and she doesn’t have a lot of common sense but she’s a bag of fun and so she’s great to play.’ The opportunity to be in the show came when Rosamund impressed so much at her first audition that she recalled to audition in front of Gervais himself. ‘That was one of the most nerve racking days of my life but I had to keep remembering that even though I was performing in front of one of the funniest
men in the UK I was there for a reason and I had to impress him. I’m glad I did because working on Life’s Too Short was one of the best things I’ve ever done and I can honestly say that Ricky Gervais is probably the most genuinely funny person I’ve ever met.’ What has already been a super busy year for Rosamund is about to go out on a high, as Life’s Too Short continues it’s run Rosamund will also be seen in a Christmas TV special of This is England. This time the show will be set two years into the future in 1988 and will see all the gang return yet again to see how their lives have changed two years on. ‘I didn’t think twice when I was asked to come back. Of course I was going to do it,’ says Rosamund. ‘We had a blast filming it both on and offset. One of the funniest days was when Joe Gilgun [Woody in the show] brought his pet parrot, Ian, on set and we managed to lose him. We were all running all over Nottingham trying to find him, we even went into the local radio station and got them to put a message out. Eventually we found him and thank God we did, he was such a big part of Joe’s life I don’t know how he’d have coped without him.’ The show will undoubtedly be a success and there are also rumours of a full series coming back in 2012 although at the moment Rosamund is reluctant to tell us much about it. Despite starring in some of the countries biggest TV shows of the past few years Rosamund says she rarely watches herself back. ‘I’ll watch my work back once or twice and look at it objectively but that’s all I need to do. I’m not one of those actresses that needs to watch themself back over and over again,’ she says. For now Rosamund is concentrating on finding her next project, something she hopes will further help people to see her as a serious actress. ‘I’d like to do something at the National Theatre,’ she says. ‘I’ve done a few short films recently and I’d definitely like to do a few more of those but for now I’m going to concentrate on diversity and on making a name for myself like so many of my idols have.’
I am Jack’s future, looking brighter and brighter. Like many of the capital’s cinephiles I am about to break the surface after a month long immersion into the wondrous depths of the London Film Festival and I do so with my faith restored in the ability of cinema to surprise and delight. As many of the films shown will be making their way into cinemas over the next few months I wanted to give you fair warning on a few titles which have left their mark on me during that last couple of weeks. Sex and spooks, cults and clowns - it’s all here.
The Awakening Rebecca Hall and Dominic West star in this properly chilling ghost story which acts like a breath of fresh air in the staid arena of copycat gore-strewn teenage slaughterfests. Co-written by Stephen Volk (whose Ghostwatch remains a high point for televised terror) this brings a genuine sense of fear back to the horror genre and gives us characters to actually care about. The film works at you slowly but gets under your skin and delivers some decent scares amidst some ropey CGI but the performances and solid writing make this a must-see for fans of cinematic chills. See it for: The scene with the doll’s house. Take a spare pair of trousers. Martha Marcy May Marlene The Sundance favourite made a hugely positive impression on the London crowds with a slow burning examination of the painful return to reality for a member of a cult. Mesmerising from the first frame with Elizabeth Olsen owning every second she is on screen. With a difficult and stark portrait of dependency and control rarely has there been a film so confident and intense, this one won’t leave you for a long time. See it for: The stunning performances from Elizabeth Olsen and John Hawkes. Jaw-dropping stuff. Take Shelter Igniting the most primal of fears this film acts as an inverse Field of Dreams with family man Curtis (Michael Shannon) coping with the oncoming storms, both real and imagined, of the future. There is something deeply felt about this film with Shannon and Jessica Chastain perfectly cast as a couple coping with depression and silent despair. This film surprised a lot
of people at the festival and if you give it a chance it may surprise you. See it for: Michael Shannon’s powerful turn in a film unafraid to see the world differently. The Wholly Family Like Spike Jonze’s Scenes from the Suburbs and the magical I’m Here this short film from Terry Gilliam provides the key ingredient of complete artistic control crucial to its success. This is a film made for and paid by an Italian pasta company but this no twenty minute long advert. Instead Gilliam’s fervent and feverish imagination runs riot as he thrills with a cautionary tale from the very Grimmest of folk lore. Visually stunning with an incredible wit it makes me wish all films were made by this man. Pure, dark and undiluted joy. See it for: Are you kidding? It’s Gilliam. Come on… We Need to Talk About Kevin Taking the coveted title of Best Film at the LFF awards Lynne Ramsay’s much anticipated adaptation of the powerful best seller from Lionel Shriver pulls no punches with its brutal show of a terrifying act of nihilism and its tragic fallout. Tilda Swinton’s most powerful performance for years elevates Ramsay’s film with its chilling simplicity. I never want to see this film again but as it has stayed with me since I saw it there is no need. It is unflinching and complex, with a love for the devil in the details. See it for: Ezra Miller’s million mile stare and Tilda Swinton taking a slap like noone else.
The Artist Michel Hazanavicius’ playful ode to the lost world of silent cinema has won an army of fans across the festival circuit and it’s difficult to imagine anyone with eyes and wit enough to read these words not falling in love with this film. Charting the rise of the talkies and the subsequent fall of the silent era’s greatest star there is so much to love here. It is pastiche and loving parody but there hasn’t been a film like this, with such joy and passion for the world of moving pictures, for a long, long time. If you see 69 any film on this list (that isn’t by a former Python) make it this one. See it for: The smile you will have on your face for weeks afterwards. Shame Steve McQueen’s second film reunites him with his Hunger lead Michael Fassbender in one of the most soulful and hostile explorations of the damaging effects of addiction seen on the big screen. Technically the film is near perfect with McQueen not afraid to play entire scenes with no dialogue or take us for an uninterrupted run through the crowded streets of New York. It’s a dizzying spectacle and Carey Mulligan and Fassbender have rarely been better. While the subject matter of sex addiction has earned the film a crushing NC-17 rating in the US McQueen’s film is far more than a simple blend of chaos and nudity. Shame is an incendiary piece of cinema which delights and depresses in equal measure. Fassbender gives a career best performance and McQueen should be on everyone’s watch-list as his fearsome talent promises much for the future.
words : Jon Lyus www.heyuguys.co.uk
Chris Bracey Where are you based ? Walthamstow E17 Gods Own Junkyard Tell us a bit about yourself : I am a neon artist for 38 years. I reinvented Soho in the 1970’s and 80’s.
What Inspires You ? Fashion Mags, Old Hollywood movies, music, dreams.
What are the tools of your trade ? A voltarc ribbon burner, Morano glass, 1000,000 volts of electricity.
Do you have any notable fans ? Jude Law, Sadie Frost, Meg Matthews, Daisy Lowe, Jamie Oliver, Emma Freud, Doctor Who What do original pieces by yourself go for: I do cheap stuff for £1,000 high end £20,000.
Tell us a fact no one knows about you ? I was a graphic artist in 1970 but got disillusioned.
Where can we next see your work (in the UK) ? At Gods Own Junkyard, 156 Regents Park Road, Primrose Hill. I have 50 pieces there.
18â€“22 January 2012 Modern British & Contemporary Art Business Design Centre Islington London N1 Tickets & Information www.londonartfair.co.uk Please quote LAF61 75
r e t t o p Art S
Freedom To Speak
The pleasing walls of the V&A, this month and there on after, are displayed with over 250 works surrounding the first in-depth survey of Postmodernism: focusing on its extravagant influence on popular culture throughout the ‘80s and ‘90s. Showcasing how it stemmed from architectural influences and how later it seemed to engulf and almost spit out the contentious movements within art, film, music, graphics and indeed fashion. Preceded by the earlier movement of modernism, in which enjoyed purity, simplicity and even decorum, the exhibition explores freedom: freedom to draw, paint, sculpt, write or express who you are and what you represent through elaborate costume and verses including the words, “America is waiting for a message of some sort or another, we ought to be mad at the government not mad at the people. ” (David Byrne, America is waiting, 81). But you understand what they’re intending to say, to put forth, even if not at least they tried to say something. The whole movement was about freedom of expression and to obtain the liberty to do what you want without hierarchy getting in the way. The results were, at times, fascinating, orgasmic even, I come to you with the standout pieces, well in my eyes anyway, and I hope Jacks’ lovers’ eyes. Postmodernism reached out and touched all kinds of areas of popular culture; inevitably it got hold of fashion. During the ‘80s and ‘90s the streets became a catwalk, it was a space where expression could be translated through the medium of clothing. Whether you were unique, or you succumbed to tribalism, yet were still separated from the ‘norm’, the world was your oyster in terms of street style. Competition was fierce. Featured in the exhibition are plenti-
ful works from well-known and loved fashion designers. Westwood, Lagerfeld and Kawakubo say their piece through clothing – a piece from Ms. W’s ‘Punkature’ collection is presented, celebrating power dressing in the ‘80s. Enlarged and distorted silhouettes portray the tribalism of punk vs. global style referencing. And Rei Kawakubo in turn, referenced ‘holocaust dressing’ in which holey jumpers and loosely fitting trousers were heaved onto a hunched mannequin, ‘proclaiming beauty in the random and unfinished.’ In terms of campaigns, one of the most identifiable and controversial of the postmodernism movement was the Swatch campaign in which Mendini (who worked in close collaboration with them), com-
missioned the Paula Scher’s wholesale quotation of a 1934 Constructivist poster by Herbert Matter. MTV was one of the most mainstream delivery systems itself – showcasing bands and musicians of the moment, and as a TV channel was by far one of, if not the, most influential, in terms of what was deemed ‘cool’ in the postmodernist era. It was somehow a dictatorship and
POSTMODERNISM: STYLE AND SUBVERSION 1970 – 1990 Where: The V&A (www.vam.ac.uk) From now until 15th January words: Lara Piras
MTV were in power. Of course, music and fashion crossed over, they come hand in hand, and what better way to demonstrate this concept than through the genre of Hip Hop and its ‘braggadocio’ elements. “You see I’m six foot one and I’m tons of fun and I dress to aT, ya see I got more clothes than Mohammad Ali and I dress so visciously.” (Sugar Hill Gang, Rapper’s Delight, ’79). This attitude routed from the capitalist boom in the ‘80s where there was an increasing focus on material objects. The Hip Hop scene embraced this and along with their gift, their talent, their voice, with a hop in their step, they used their swagger to sell millions and make millions. Featured in the exhibition are Grandmaster flash’s turntables (who’s purpose is to represent sampling and the success it brought to so many DJs and musicians), Jamel Shabazz’s street photography and of course, no exhibition referencing Hip Hop would be complete without my girls Salt-N-Pepa. Whilst all this is going on, the most epic of artists are also on display, including Annie Lennox’s stage costumes and Grace Jones’ infamous ‘Revised and Updated’,
touching on the concept of ‘synthetic identities’. Ever so current now, with menswear for womens wear trends and the even more recently the androgyny (one could call) pandemic, what with the male womens wear model Andrej Pejic and the almost dysmorphic Rick Genest. Alongside MTV, magazines were the most important delivery systems for the new phase of postmodernism, evidently due to the Internet still not available as a mainstream source. So what magazines were featured I hear you ask? I.D. – the August ’85 issue, of course, Lizzy Tear literally, torn and pasted into sophisticated punk style graphics. There was The Face, sadly over, which was spiky in its design identity with a focus on cut-up typography. Émigré took this one step further, setting a new standard for complexity and occasionally illegibility due to its typography, which I found hellishly interesting. Why would one invest in a magazine that was almost illegible? Need to find a back issue of that. The New Socialist was also present, as well as Wet and Ryuko Tsushin’s fashion news. These magazines represented the epitome of postmodernist graphic techniques and also the direction in which content was going. Less words, more imagery, the content was out there, hypnotising, daring, and exciting, fresh, original. There was a sense of ‘you are you own editor.’ The next person could read the magazine in a completely different way than you, and take from it a completely different experience. This was all due to layout, font, everything your eyes were exposed to, and again, the pure, virgin like content. This concept has somewhat developed through the years and some of these ideals are still present in modern day magazines, but this struck a chord, and made one think of the future of our industry. Where is the magazine industry going? And what does its future hold? Since the mega boom of the internet, anyone who’s anyone will know that the magazine industry has somewhat suffered. Perhaps suffered is the wrong word to use, adapted? Editors all over the world have had to adjust their content to coincide with the constant hunger and demand of the world of online journalism. Information is now so readily available, and the need for transferring information, practically before it has even happened is increasingly more apparent. Blogs are the most apt example, and the bloggers themselves. More and more we see them being questioned as journalists and whether they should be treated in the same way as say Shulman, Jones or Grand, because they are self published and have the freedom to write about what they want, when they want, and if that’s before it can be published in a magazine, what use is it for the information to be repeated? Even Francesca Burns posted a rather risqué post recently entitled, ‘Are bloggers the new paparazzi?’ claiming, “the blogging situation outside of the shows this season
was absolutely out of control,” and stating, quite rightly, that, “Bloggers should have proper accreditation and follow a code of conduct, just as all journalists have to.” Here, here Burns. So what will come of the magazine industry? Online will continue to deliver all the instant, daily updates of the current goings on and writers will have to adapt their delivery and get used to snappy, shorter sentences, as people just won’t sit and read your words on screen. And the magazines will eventually and unfortunately become fewer in quantity per year, but will transform into beautifully written, investable pieces of artwork. So the future isn’t bleak as such, we just need t be ready to accept change. The final section of the exhibition examined the hyper-inflated culture of the ‘80s. Money, money, money. Consumerism and excess became trademarks of this era and the artists of the time embraced this, like no other. We saw, Warhol’s Dollar Sign paintings from ’81 and Karl Lagerfeld’s sequined Chanel jacket. Even corporate companies such as Disney, employed artists to enthuse a little postmodernism into their brand, keeping up with the times, showing how imminent this trend was. In 1984, the novelist, Martin Amis, captured the moment perfectly, “money doesn’t mind if we say it’s evil, it goes from strength to strength.” However, by the late ‘80s death was knocking on postmodernisms’ door, with no signs of what would take its place. Uncertainty definitely stood in its way, and this lead one to think about its affect on 77 modern day and the present state of art and culture, in the sense of who we look at to be modern day representatives of the present movement, if there is one. There are a lot of great artisans out there, in a variation of areas; film, fashion, music etc. Yet artists focusing on art itself seem to be less known, less mainstream and less available. Of course, I’m not talking about people who consciously seek out art, different exhibitions and already have an interest in it, I’m talking about the youth. Artists aren’t as glamourised as they once were, Warhol and Basquiat were celebrities, adored, I mean, who can you think of today who bares that kind of status in the artworld? Banksy? Yes, the street art wave is an exception, but we seriously need to start romanticizing the art world and get kids enthusiastic again, as you and I both know, they are seriously missing out. I know it’s a cliché, but they are our future, and who exactly are they looking up to at the moment? Dappy? There seems to be diminished hope for the youth, what with the current economic state, unemployment and cuts to the arts and youth projects. But still, even if this all changed it’s difficult not to ask, are we bright enough? Are we motivated enough for us to allow a new era, or movement to come along? I wholeheartedly think so, if we give them something, we will see a return. Art needs to become more accessible and more youth
Who’s Taking the Mickey Now?
HE IS SURELY ONE OF THE MOST RECOGNIZED ICONS OF THE LAST CENTURY. BUT WHAT IS IT ABOUT WALK DISNEY’S MOST FAMOUS CREATION THAT’S KEEPING MICKEY MOUSE IN OUR EYE-LINE AND MAKING HIM PART OF ART HISTORY? MARTHA ALEXANDER INVESTIGATES.
There’s little point in going into too much persuasive detail about the worldwide popularity of Mickey Mouse. You’d have to literally have been born yesterday not to appreciate his global fame. A child of the eighties, I was taken to Florida to meet Mickey and returned with heaps of Disney souvenirs: Wrist watches with both hands rotating around a fixed point in Mickey’s nose, ear-shaped sunglasses, ridiculously vast baseball caps, a pair of leggings onto which a coquettish Minnie was printed repeatedly and a whole load of other sunshiny crap that seemed like a good idea at the time but would turn my family into walking adverts for Disney. Looking back, it seems like a very, very 80s scenario but actually Disney World was well-established and is still a kid’s wonderland today. He is absolutely everywhere – still. Since his ‘birth’ in 1928 as a full-grown, walking, talking quasi-human rodent - dapper in red shorts, yellow shoes and a pair of ears that were always simultaneously visible regardless of the angle he was captured at - Mickey Mouse has grown in infamy and appeal, and is going nowhere. Whether they love him or hate him, it’s undeniable; artists are not immune this Disney powerhouse and have employed him ceaselessly in their craft. It’s probably best to dispense with the facts first: Mickey Mouse was the creative offspring of Ub Iwerks and Walt Disney at the latter’s eponymous film studio. Following his debut in Steamboat Willy, which is really the first piece of art featuring him, Mickey starred in over 100 animations. In truth, his career peaked and plateaued by 1940. And yet 70 years later he’s still a massive luminary. While his silver screen stardom began to wane in the 1930s, curiously, Mickey’s popularity mushroomed. But it wasn’t just middle class, Middle American children who loved him. He was globally recognized. John Updike, in his preface to the 1991 book The Art of Mickey Mouse told stories of African tribesmen of yesteryear getting mosaics of Mickey faces embossed into their teeth and others refusing to purchase soap that didn’t have his image stamped into the surface. Overtime, The Walt Disney Studios has grown into a vast corporation and become so wealthy and dominant, with Mickey’s face as the company logo and,
duly, the image has seeped into every aspect of our culture, developing a variety of connotations. In gung ho military movie, Full Metal Jacket, the soldiers are seen singing the Mickey Mouse Club theme song as they march along in the closing scenes. We are often warned against the perils of studying for a Mickey Mouse Degree. Mickey Mouse has been repeatedly incorporated into all mediums of popular culture, including other cartoons, like The Simpsons and been held up as an embodiment of greed. It will come as no surprise that Mickey Mouse is not simply a gnawing mammal. He’s the face of Disney and the ultimate money-spinner. Eduardo Paolozzi was, if not the first, then one of the first artists to appropriate a Disney image in 1948. He used Mickey – and Minnie - in collages alongside starlets in bikinis and other bright and brilliant references to Hollywood and pop culture. Over the years all sorts of artists have followed suit. And it’s not just a few. There’s a list so long that it would make for dull, archival reading to recite it here, but I can proffer some highlights: Banksy. Andy Warhol. Roy Lichtenstein. Maurice Sendak. He been used ironically, in the name of fashion – hark, if you will, at the hipsterlove for an oversized Mickey Mouse sweatshirt. He’s used as a means of protesting against a capitalist Western society. He’s employed as nostalgic throwback to childhood in an increasingly depressing world. He’s used as a mask and statement. As you might expect, it was the Pop Art movement that produced the first healthy harvest of Mickey Mouse appropriations in paint and sculpture. It was a novel idea aesthetically, combining commercial frippery with fine art; Critics might have turned their noses up but everyone else loved the idea and it has, if not snowballed since then, then the trend for using the mouse in art hasn’t diminished by any means. Leading the way was, of course Andy Warhol. Mickey Mouse fitted into Warhol’s entire approach perfectly; the American artist’s entire narrative on merchantry and selling (his studio was, after all not a studio, but ‘The Factory’), his penchant for the language and imagery of advertising and retail all created the perfect backdrop for such a lucrative business insignia. He returned to Mickey repeatedly throughout his career, and even after his career and life are over, the potent combination of Mickey Mouse and Andy Warhol continues to flourish: As I write, a telephone-bidder has just snapped up Mickey Mouse (Myth Series) for a cool $3.4 million through Sotheby’s New York. Michael Sandle’s A Twentieth Century Memorial, detailing shining bronze mice
craniums surrounding one larger central piece, a human skeleton topped with a Mickey head and wielding a gun. It was Sandle’s response to America’s involvement in the Vietnam War – making it clear that the mouse stood for all that was base, shortsighted and superficial. In later sculptures he continued to take features of Mickey and use them to represent power and propaganda. There’s the overwhelming suggestion that Mickey Mouse defines American identity and that’s commented on plenty, too. In 2003, Billie Grace Lynn created Dead Mouse, a gargantuan inflatable slain Mickey lying in a pool of blood the shape of America. However Mickey wasn’t always used as a political puppet. Another sculptor, Claes Oldenburg housed his obsessive collection of nostalgic knickknacks in his purpose built Mouse Museum, which was a bulky, 3D silhouette of Mickey’s head and unmistakable ears. For some artists, Claes Oldenburg, the appeal is much more innocent and autobiographical: it’s about childhood and memory. The eighties were really the boom years for the image. This stands to reason, Mikey was becoming the emblem of money, excess and capitalism - a perfect accompaniment to the decade. That said, many artists seemed less angry, and works by the likes of Keith Haring seemed simplistic and often joyful. And what about now? I’m no stranger to art fairs and never do I come away having not seen hide nor hair of Mickey Mouse. Well, Mickey is still making waves, one way or another. Earlier this year, a billboard bearing Mickey and Minnie by Banksy was torn down by officials in Los Angeles. Only a couple of months back, a Russian court banned an Alexander Savko painting from being exhibited because it placed the head of Mickey Mouse on Jesus Christ’s body. He should be a cliché, by now but somehow it’s not. Or maybe he is but it’s gone beyond that. What do we look at when we see Mickey in artworks? I used to think, “Oh cute! Kitsch! Cool!” but frankly it goes a bit beyond than that today, when no one’s holding the front page because they discovered Mickey Mouse is a capitalist emblem. It’s been done too much to be cool anymore and purposefully kitsch art is about as welcome as Chlamydia. If I assume artists always want to say something new, then what more can possibly be said about this suited, booted, big-eared rodent? British-born but Paris-dwelling artist Darren Lago has been using elements of Mickey Mouse in his work for some time, most notably his treatment and subversion of Rodin’s monument to French novelist Honore de Balzac. Lago has responded to academic CR Morey’s prediction in 1918 and as part of
criticism of Rodin’s sculpture, that “there may come a time, and doubtless will come a time, when it will not seem outré to represent a great novelist as a huge comic mask crowning a bathrobe”, but creating exactly what Morey predicted. “The time has come, Michele de Balzac, Mickey to his friends has arrived he is the great defender and progenitor of high and low art assimilation, a stance a position which disregards the canons, the institutions and tradition a cultural revolutionary,” is Lago’s rationale of his work, which showed at this year’s Frieze Art Fair. He believes that Mickey’s enduring employment amongst artists is down to how easily the image – and audiences – can be manipulated. “He is a useful foil,” says Lago. “A highly recognised figure with out a strong personality so as to be able to adopt other agenda or propaganda.” Speaking for himself, Lago’s use of Mickey in his work boils down to familiarity: “Mickey Mouse is firstly familiar like many other readymade objects which give the viewer an anchor, a door, a way in, a position of access into the conceptual or the abstract. Much of my work is about this, creating a position of access from the everyday towards an understanding of the complex construction of ideas and practice which is contemporary art.” There’s a sense that artists are returning
to the original purpose of Mickey Mouse, that he is appealing to children and not just CEOs. Dutch artist Wouter Klein Velderman created a site-specific sculpture of Mickey while artist in residence at the Tembe Art Studio in Moengo, Suriname and has a much more innocent and simplistic approach to him, thanks to the sociological implications within the community he [Velderman] lived in. “In Moengo, I counted four houses with paintings of Mickey Mouses on their facades,” he recalls. “I think people get attracted to depictions of Mickey Mouse because it’s a good way to communicate with their neighbourhood and to show what kind of person you are, what you represent. Mickey Mouse is a figure to be trusted easily and therefore the person behind the depiction is too. Mickey in Moengo is often used as a mediator between the people.” His 14-foot sculpture – Monument for Transition is there to stay. The sculpture is about change, on every scale that affects this little jungle village. “I wanted to use an existing icon that stands for a certain kind of transition. One of the icons that changed Western society a great deal, is the Walt Disney cartoon Mickey Mouse. Therefore I asked the people of Moengo and children from the surrounding villages to help me rebuilding a Mickey Mouse, but this time using techniques, materials and to add
(woodcarving) elements from and about their own culture.” Artist and Senior Lecturer in Fine Art at Swansea University Andreas Rüthi who includes depictions of plastic Mickey Mouse toys in his still life work, is attracted from an aesthetic point of view. “I think I got interested, because [Mickey Mouse images] were originally drawings for cartoons, and then were made into merchandising products because of the popularity of the films and magazines,” he explains. “In my paintings I bring them back from 3D to 2D. I find the toys exciting because that is what I also deal with as a painter; how to paint something three dimensional on a two dimensional canvas.” He also likes the colours, the black, white, red and yellow, which add a pop of juicy colour to his otherwise pale palette. “They create a strong contrast within my painting,” he agrees. “I also like the texture of the plastic. It is different to other more domestic, traditional elements in my still life paintings.” There’s such a variety of work out there – it’s hard to even scratch the surface. Mickey has been used in different guises by different people for different means. Sometimes his cheery face is used in conjunction with things that are not so palatable. Sometimes he is taken at face value. However, all of these artists have one thing in common – they have used a familiar, popular image to manipulate viewer expectations.
I was busy being a cliche just by London Fields rail on my way home, via the pub, obviously, from my girlfriend’s place. A guy shouted out to us in the streets and for some reason I turned around. Directions. He didn’t come across the least bit insane. Until he asked: “Which way is it to a better life?” I didn’t know what to say. I was going to the pub.
Drugs are the worst better-life substitute of all. When you come down from that box of truffles, you’ll feel great. Yes, you can learn stuff. Hippies will tell you psychedelia makes you a better person. But in the long run, probably not a better life - just recalling distant memories of three hours staring into the inner workings of a zip while your feet felt very far away indeed.
Now, this guy could have been one of any of a vast pallette of flavours. Later making a point of telling me he wasn’t “mental” as he walked off did have me wondering. Anyway, it didn’t matter. I spotted him, a tall non-descript looking Asian man, ask someone else stood in an archway. There was no way that guy was going to give him an answer either - his ponytail gave him away. Just as I thought, archway ponytail man answer with a shrug and a “sorry mate”. I bet everyone did. I did too. But I meant it when I said sorry.
And try telling the guy who’s cleaning up his 34th random floorturd of the day at Burger King that there is joy in work. There is probably immense joy in some work, mostly in imaginary careers: speedboat testing guy, incorrigible mad professor, Six Million Dollar Man. A far cry from scraping shit smeared over a bog cubicle wall.
In retrospect, I wish I’d been able to give him an answer. My initial hindsight brain fart was to quote a line out of Crass’ Big A Little A: “Be what you want to be, do what you want to do, I am he and she is she but you’re the only you.” My second hindsight brain fart cringed. Slow, and long. Wasting valuable neurons thinking about it further, I concluded there was no real answer. And why was he asking? Probably a prank. In that case, well done, nondescript Asian man, because you’ve totally fooled me into writing 700 words about a throwaway line in London’s pretension capital. Hopefully there weren’t a hundred more of you asking the same question in other boroughs. That reeks of seed-planting viral marketing, which I happen to fall for every single time. (Remember that YouTube of a monkey picking up a gun and shooting at its Rwandan captors? Planet of the Apes movie. Hook, line, stinker.) What is the answer? It can’t be a really big house. Everything TV has told me since The Brady Bunch was reinvented as an incestuous comedy disaster is: happiness is not a 2.4 children nuclear family. In fact, that is usually misery. And it’s definitely not the 2.4 children box set (remember that?). The man who started really fucking Iraq up, George Bush Senior, thought the Waltons were an ideal family so I’m not going to take his word for it either. It was only a matter of time before, like the Brady Bunch, John-Boy started fucking Erin in the barn, John Sr. found out and burned the lot of them to the ground. Could it be a life of wanton excess? Trying to stuff half of Bolivia up your face before you can bear to even do the dishes? Nah. Happiness is not just one nostril. Partying all the time gets vacuous and boring after a while, unless you’re the kind of rich person who gets papped every time you take a taxi. Even they get bored of it.
If there is an answer, it’s probably blind ignorance. I always feel like the happiest Christians are the born again ones. Now, excuse me while I generalise here, but I mean the ones who thought “fuck it!” and stopped asking questions. Doing what the good beardy thing says, ignoring all the rape and shit in the Old Testament. They are the happiest. Is it ignorance, or is it because they feel driven to do good work, help, and teach - even if it comes with a distinctly monotheistic agenda. Then again, there’s the whole crusades thing. Born Again Blair sat down for public prayer with Bush Jr to ask God for a very good war. That’s the problem. When you realise that, in many, many ways the world sucks, it’s almost like a switch goes off in your head. Pub conversations are ruined forever. You ramble and you can’t stop thinking about how awful everything is. Well, damn, you’re not helping the starving peons of Hwanghae by slurping down that Guinness. Put your filter back on, turn that negativity switch back off, try not to think about it. There are some things and 83 ideas and realities that can be difficult to unsee. Kind of like the opposite of a fresh break-up when you only remember the good things, not the time she threw out your Optimus Prime. Anyway, like I said before, I don’t know what this man’s thing was. Hopefully he wasn’t in the clutches of the Black Dog, let down on no-life-tips before becoming a London Overground statistic - the cause of an evening’s delayed trains. I got home OK, so guess not. The question was a weird fly in that day’s ointment. And after a week of wondering, clearly that fly got itself nice and sticky, because it’s still with me. words : Tamlin Mcgee layout : Jack Walker
Rooms with a view words : Rebecca Rutt / imgage : Lucy Drscoll
London is stacked full of beautiful, eye-opening and impressive views and from nearly every angle thereâ€™s a chance to catch an ideal photo. But nestled among the cityâ€™s skyscrapers and famous buildings there are several spots which give you the chance to appreciate how beautiful, historic and impressive London really is. These are not just reserved for tourists and spots that will impress even the most jaded Londoner.
Skylon www.skylon-restaurant.co.uk SE1 8XX Situated on the first floor of the Royal Festival Hall on the South Bank this bar offers exceptional panoramic views across to St Paul’s Cathedral and the city and along the Thames. The bar is also a great spot for cocktails and fine dining although you’ll pay for the quality of the drinks served.
Waterloo bridge A personal favourite of mine, walking across the bridge or catching a bus over is a great way to see the sights along the river. To the west is embankment with the London Eye and the Houses of Parliament taking centre stage, while the other end stretches down to the city and St Pauls.
9 Frying Pan Alley, E1 7HS
Strictly speaking not a room but this spot in the beautiful Hampstead Heath needs to be visited. The North London viewing point is where many a historical leader has pondered their next move and is the focal point of the Heath. Be warned though – it is a bit of a mission walking to the top which is 98 metres high, but the excellent views of the capital’s skyline will be worth the sweat.
This bar sitting atop the Nido Tower in Spitalfields is worth a visit for the view alone. The floor-to-ceiling windows give one of London’s most exceptional cityscapes and if you live in zones one to four you might even be able to pick out your home. Aim to get there before the sun goes down and you’ll get to watch the dramatic landscape of the capitol changing as darkness falls.
Slightly out of the way but well worth the trip south for both an escape from the city and a view over the entire London skyline. On a clear day you can see from Wembley to Canary Wharf and it’s best to visit on a sunny day, or to take lots of layers and blankets. Also watch out for the wildlife as the park is full of wild deer roaming around – not something you’re likely to see in the heart of London.
Situated almost on top of Tottenham Court Road tube station, Paramount – the bar resting on top of Centre Point, offers outstanding panoramic views of London from it’s epicentre. One blip – it’s a private members’ club, so you’ll need to find someone to let you in – it will be well worth the effort.
www.coqdargent.co.uk No. 1 Poultry EC2R 8EJ If you’re a fan of heights this city bar should be next on your list to visit. From the roof top garden you’ll experience a slightly nerve wracking view down on Bank and St Pauls but be warned to hold on tight if you’re taking in the sights after a cocktail or two.
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Party time! And we have found some amazing seasonal treats to make your party be a super beaut! Ease of use, and portability are key, so you can go from office drab, to disco fab in no time, wherever you manage to do your make-up!
Our Make Up artist, Luke Stephens generally keeps us up to date with what we shodul be putting on our faces for the festive season. Thanks to Hoxton Pony Images: Tine Brun Make-up: Luke Stephens, with Katie Aldridge ..... Hair: ................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................... Nicoletta Gauci using Paul Mitchell Models: Courtesy of Lenis Models Rebecca Wears: Top Shop Nail Colour in Cut the Mustard, £5 and MUA Make Up Academy Professional in Broken Arrow, £2.99, and Make Up Academy Professional Trio Eyeshadow Passion, £2.50
1. Midnight Emergency Kit, Urban Decay, £28. 2.Yves Saint Laurent Manucure Couture No6, £24 ‘One matte, and one gloss for an alternative French manicure’ 3.Glaze Haze Semi-sweet Smoothing Hair Serum, Bed Head, £10.50 4.Mega Whip Marshmallow Hair Texturizer, Bed Head, £12 ‘truly smells like a candy shop’ 5. Shimmer Instant Wash-off Tanning Lotion, Fake Bake, £10 6.Love Balm, Jurlique, £10 ‘for amazing kissable pout’ 7. Smoke and Sparkle set in Golden Brown, and Silver Black, £14
1. Crescent Row Limited Edition Fragrance Set, Benefit, £29.50 ‘Ideal purse sized perfume top-up bottles’ 2. Happy, Clinique, from £35 3. Essential Vitamin Serum, NARS, £57 ‘for a super quick boost of radiance’ 4. Sparkling Lickable Body Powder in Marshmallow flavour, Urban Decay, £14 ‘really does smell like marshamallows!’
1. Smoky Eye Pallete, Laura Mercier, £55 ‘Classic smoky eye look in ONE palette!’ 2. Bobbi’s Party Eau de Parfum, Bobbi Brown, £46.50 3. Eye Color Co-ordianted Palette for brown eyes, Smashbox, £30 ‘Designer with YOUR eye colur in mind!’ 4. Black Ruby Sparkle Eyeshadow Palette, Bobbi Brown, £34 5. Glow Highlighter in Poilsh, TopShop Make-up, £10 6. Glitter Reflects for eyes, and lips, M.A.C, £15.50 ‘go crazy fun with these glitters!’ 7. Lid Smoothies Anti Oxidant 8-Hour Eye Colour, Clinique, £17 8. Bronze and Blush in Burning Embers, TopShop Make-up, 12.50 ‘two-in-one make up bag must have!’ 9. Eye Palette in Secret Liasons, TopShop Makeup, 12.50 10. Dazzle Fragrance, The Only Way Is Essex, £18.49 11. Ombres Duolumières No 41, Yves Saint Laurent, £28 ‘Soft and sexy, and so easy to use!’ 12. Kitten Glitter Eyeliner, Stila, £10 13. Essex Glow, The Only Way Is Essex, £10 ‘Truly a complete, glowing, bronzing set!’
Klara Wears Ombres Duolumières No 39, £28, and Golden Gloss No 45 £21, both by Yves Saint Laurent.
THERE’S NO PLACE LIKE HOME This month I had to endure one of the more painful processes in life. The house hunt.
Let me paint you the picture – we currently live in a lovely 4-bed home complete with gorgeous fireplaces, a kitchen diner and a Victorian claw-footed bath. But step out of our solid wooden door with cute gold boat knocker, and the safe, comfortable, privileged image ends. Most mornings, I dodge dog poo on the pavements and try to avoid the random items of clothing that litter the street (it baffles me how a pair of trousers can wind up on the pavement – what happened to the person wearing them?!) as I walk to the train station – no tube line here, I’m afraid. I see the same man every day delving through the bins and pass a woman retrieving used cigarette butts off the floor. Why they need to do this at 7 in the morning is anyone’s guess. After forking out £32.20 on a weekly tube pass, I wait on the platform and squeal if one of the many pigeons dare approach me. And then I get onto the safety of my train and make my way into central London. So, as I may have suggested, we have a nice house but the area’s crap. Therefore we were keen to move to a new, nicer area, where the local folk are like us and aren’t the type to yell ‘TOILET ROLL’ if you’ve just bought some from the supermarket and are walking along the street with it in hand. Our search was, however, made somewhat challenging by our stingy budgets. Apparently, cheap 4-bed houses just don’t exist in London. After a morning of ringing up every estate agent we could find and then some, we decided to hit the streets and take a more hands on approach. Unfortunately, this was soon met by ‘Sorry girls, I think you’ll struggle to find something’ and ‘We don’t have anything at the moment, but you can register your details and we’ll contact you if anything comes up.’ Bore off. The following weeks included cancelled appointments (‘There’s just nothing around on your budget’), arrogant know-it-all agents, and hideous houses. Well, that’s if they can even qualify as houses. The word ‘dwellings’ sounds more apt. Because it’s a skuzzy sounding word, I think. When you walk into a dingy basement flat (that you were told was a house) and the man says ‘This is a weird one – you’ll either love it or hate it’. Great – yeah, we really want to live somewhere you consider weird. Doing a great job, mate. He then dared follow this up with: ‘Let me just turn on a few lamps for you to let some light in.’ Note: This was not a dark and gloomy day. But, stuck in that Godforsaken ‘flat’, it may as well have been 5am on a December morning. No, let’s call
it February. That is, horribly depressing. The place was finished off with a beautiful view of a brick wall, a cupboard attempting to be passed off as a bedroom, and an olive green three-piece bathroom suite. Walking out and passing the next group waiting to go in, we did all we could not to scream ‘Don’t do it!!!!!’ in an overdramatic fashion. We began our 20-minute walk to the nearest tube and it started to rain. I’m not even making that up for effect. And I was wearing sandals. Suddenly, dog poo on the street didn’t seem so bad. (Feeling sorry for me yet?) Things picked up a little when we found a 5-bed detached place on the same street as Gordon Ramsay. Opposite a common, close to cute cafes, came with widescreen tele. But it also, apparently, came complete with live in nanny - the landlady was this old lady who lived out the back but used the same front door. ‘The previous tenants used to call me nonna,’ she tells us. Suddenly, visions of nonna stirring a pot of stew and invading our (well, technically HER) space while we tried to relax/ recover from hangovers, put us off her beautiful home. The next day was spent taking a painful car journey with the most hideously arrogant and unprofessional man. He drove us to a nasty estate. – he’d obviously really listened to our requirements. The metal banisters – not dissimilar to jail (perhaps that’s preferable?) – were enough for us. We were in and out quicker than you can say ‘Your home sucks.’ NEXT! Except there was no next. We enjoyed a few tactical lunch/coffee stops to break up the day and contemplated life. I went shopping to try and numb the pain and later returned home to the girls having a Very Serious chat. They wanted to stay put. They wanted to embrace the crap, the bin rustlers, the toilet roll abusers. The grass ain’t always greener, and all that. I was up for it, too. Anything to keep me in my beautiful home with natural light and no pensioner. And no metal bars. So here we are. Free from those arsehole estate agents. Next time, I’m enlisting the help of Kirstie and Phil.
How To Celebrate Christmas In London IT GETS PACKED THEN IT GOES DEAD WHO’S JACK
London at Christmas time is covered in glitter and festive lights and every street you turn down has decorations to make it look a little bit more special. Restaurants and bars are also falling over themselves to lure you in with warming mulled wine or freshly baked mince pies so to make sure you embrace the festive season in the capital fully, we’ve compiled our favourite places to celebrate the season.
GREENWICH NAVAL COLLEGE SKATING
oldroyalnavalcollege.org Throughout London pop-up ice rinks appear during this time and while they all provide some outdoor fun and Christmas music, the rink in Greenwich is lucky to have some of the most spectacular views to really get you in the spirit. The rink is located in the middle of the college grounds and you’re surrounded on all sides by stunning white stone buildings. Also, there are several handy pubs nearby selling hot drinks and pastries to warm you up after all that skating.
HYDE PARK WINTER WONDERLAND
hydeparkwinterwonderland.com A staple addition to London at Christmas – the Winter Wonderland in Hyde Park is the ideal place to start feeling festive and embrace your inner child. It’s free to go along and there are numerous stalls to pick up last minute gifts along with tasty treats to keep you going. There is also an ice rink set around the Victorian bandstand which makes you feel a bit like you’ve been transported into a classic Christmas film. There’s also a giant wheel to give you a stunning view of the park and several rides to keep you entertained.
FESTIVE AFTERNOON TEA
beasofbloomsbury.com St Paul’s, One New Change. EC4M 9AF If you’re bored of shopping and Christmas activities in general, afternoon is the perfect solution to revive you with some delicious treats. Bea’s of Bloomsbury have a special menu for Christmas and the afternoon features delights like blondies, mince pies, gingerbread cake and baileys marshmallows all for £25 per person. Be warned – the cake stands are overflowing with sweet and savoury goods so come hungry.
If you’ve left your shopping a little too late London’s Christmas markets are the perfect place to buy original and unique presents for all your friends in one place. They’re stacked full of local craft items and produce and one of our favourites is Taste of Christmas at the ExCel Centre from the 2 – 4 December. This gets pretty packed so be prepared to spend the day among lots of other keen shoppers. If you prefer something a little more low-key why not head to Broadway Market in London Fields where you can get similar products at half the price. If you hate Christmas shopping and you’ve done it all online then go along for the food samples.
LAHORE KEBAB HOUSE
lahore-kebabhouse.com Bored of the turkey, cranberry sauce and mince pies – or just not a fan in the first place? Go for an alternative meal out at one of London’s best curry houses. Lahore is around the corner from Tayyabs but with less crowds and queuing. It serves authentic Pakistani cuisine and is a great place for big groups. It’s cheap but the food is excellent quality and a large step above the curry houses of Brick Lane.
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