January 17th, 2010

tylers men

Cor Blimey Guv'nor A Bear Made Out Of Straw

Whittlesey was fun with Tyler's yesterday. It was pretty much exactly the same levels of chaos as at the clock's tour in the autumn, but at a festival.

Luckily the council had conspired to make the festival just as chaotic by forgetting to shut the road.

It's just a shame the festival seems to have lost some of the magic it used to have when I first went, but then the whole atmosphere of the place has changed. Every other shop's now closed making it feel strangely skeletal.

The first time I visited the place would have been for my first dance out with Gogs in 2003 for St George's day, where we danced outside the George pub in the market square with a few other sides. Admittedly, every time I visited that pub, it was crap, but it was also the main focus of the market square and it's now been standing there boarded up for a few years. One of many desserted buildings in what should be one of the main focal points of the village. It's turned from a quaint village market square to utterly miserable desolation. Surely someone must be able to do something with those buildings, even if they're just turned into flats or something?

The festival itself also seems to be getting a bit too big for it's boots too, which is unfortunate. Rather than being this friendly little village festival, it seems to have become full of it's own self-importance. A number of people have mentioned to me about sides that have been banned from Whittlesey. What's all that about then? There was even one point during the day, where Red Leceister processed out of town saying they'd just been banned. No idea what they'd done.

All in all, it's still a good festival and it was fun to go there with Tylers', but it just seems the festival needs to just take itself a little less seriously again.

Highlights: (Tyler's are around 1 min in just after Gogs)

(Direct link)

(via Peel Productions)
mellotron, music

When the revolution takes place I'll be late and I'll be shot as a traitor

So, time for icelandic pop. The next CD in the pile is the Sugarcubes 1988 debut album "Life's Too Good". Given the number of divorces and remarriages after it's release and the tensions that eventually led to the bands breakup, it clearly it must have been.

The music of the Sugarcubes may have been heavily overshadowed by the solo work of Bjork, but if you're not familiar with them they are well worth a look. While Bjork's solo stuff was far more dance influenced, the Sugarcubes sees the same distinctive vocal style in a more rock-based situation. There is something strangely reminiscient of early B-52s in the result and it's certainly just as eccentric.

That said, Bjork does share the vocals with Einar Benediktsson. While Benediktsson's vocals are more simplistic, being little more than just spoken word, they contrast well with Bjork's. The opening track "Traitor", features Benediktsson taking the main vocals with Bjork providing more abstract backing vocals, which results in one of the strongest tracks on the whole album.

Other highlights of the album include Motorcrash, a cheerful little number about someone witnessing a motor accident and taking one of the victims home with her; Birthday, the single that got the band recognition outside Iceland, particularly from John Peel; Deus, one of the more eccentric ways to declare God doesn't exist; and F***ing in Rhythm & Sorrow, which sees them at their most eccentric lyrically having the style of a caberet song, but about a woman finding a naked man in her flat. The hidden track, Taktu Bensín Elskan, which is sung entirely in Icelandic, is also worth a listen.

As a taster, here's the video of Motorcrash

(Direct link)