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Archive for May, 2009

‘Au or Gold’, Banjo or Freakout at The Macbeth, London

banjo or freakout.jpg

Photo ripped from BOF myspace – credited to Elly

Banjo or Freakout are an unmistakably vital live group currently doing the rounds in London’s clubs.  On record, there’s a lush restrained, tense thing going on, but live, the whole thing’s exploding out.  Peaking levels oozing forth from a couple of SP555s, overdriven guitar -made-alien through a bank of stomp boxes, insistently pounding drums, like a Native American drum circle, and the abstract swirl of Natalizia’s super-delayed vocals.  Go see these after one of these hot summer days.  They will make your evening.  This is THE summer.  Pure goldsounds.  Au.

p.s. New record out too…

It’s called ‘Upside Down’



‘Don’t touch the levels now’, Theo Parrish at Plastic People, London

theo parrish.jpg

So… if you haven’t made it down to one of these yet then you have time to rectify it, but not long.  Legendary DJ and producer, Theo Parrish is doing a monthly residency at London’s finest…  Plastic People.  With Parrish spending the entire night behind the wheels of steel, the best advice I can give is to get there early before bar kick out crew, find a spot, close your eyes, and let the rest happen as it does.

Remaining dates: 6th June, 4th July, 1st August

Good video interview here:


And listen to this…

‘Everything forever’, Mi Ami at The Macbeth, London

Mi Ami

Photo ripped from Mi Ami myspace (location/ photographer unknown)

Last night Mi Ami played at The Macbeth on Hoxton Street, taking in a London stop on their Euro tour.  After a tentative start (which through no fault of their own included a badly behaved mic stand that appeared to have been possessed by the spirit of a Harold Lloyd prop, Fantasia-style, spinning around away from wherever it needed it to be), Mi Ami, took the gathered crowd at The Macbeth, primed their minds with intricate little polyrhythms, slicked the whole affair up with heavy bass, distracting their bodies into relaxing, spaced things out with heavily delayed sharp guitar clank, and delivered the sucker punch of brilliantly sore throat inducing androdgyvox.  The audience was so wowed and thirsty for more, they found it impossible to just let the band go home and rest their weary limbs.  A number of encores ensued, and the amicable three-piece were kind enough to oblige and attempt to quench the thirst.  Of course, these attempts were equivalent to pouring petrol on a fire to put it out… the more they played, the more they were wanted.  Absolutely brilliant.  Carved out a (deep) space and drew us all in.  This was a mind blowing show.  Pure Energie.  Try and catch them before the venues are too big for the intensity of the experience available at cosy spaces like this place.

In the meantime… buy EVERYTHING before it sells out FOREVER.  Everything.  Stoke this flame.  Bring them back to the UK.  Picked a few up at the show and they are lush looking/feeling/sounding things.  New vinyl excitingly titled “Techno 1.1” due soon too on Hoss Records…http://www.myspace.com/miamiamiami

mi ami hoss

Oh, and here’s a clip of their penultimate encore song…

‘Speechless like…’, Antipop Consortium at Cargo, London

Fluorescent Tube.jpg

Fluorescent Black – the mysterious recording that’s been spoken about ever since the first whispers of an Anti Pop Consortium reformation.

Let me rewind a touch.  Anti Pop Consortium are an IMPORTANT group.  All caps.  No doubt.  Two Warp records releases under their collective belt, a break from the group (at the height of their notoriety) and numerous releases and side projects later, they are back, this time with the mighty Big Dada.  Tonight’s show at Cargo is spellbinding.  The sheer energy being exchanged between APC & the crowd is phenomenal.  The mix is good… vocals well audible, beats crisp, synths stabs alternately warm analogue and cold digi.  Pure bliss.  “We’ll never fake moves” exclaimed Earl Blaise as they teased the crowd with the only piece of retrospective work performed that night… beginning as Ghostlawns the way we all know it, but not even a bar in, everything but vocals dropped out.  Acapella.  So yeah – that’s Ghostlawns acapella.  Kick yourself if you weren’t there.

All the new material sounds totally amazing – both the skewed  instrumentals and blistering vocal tracks.  Awaiting Autumn and the APC’s new dawn.  They had better be coming back to London!  Volcano.

‘If dancefloors could dream’, Flying Lotus at FWD, Plastic People


*picture (from a Stateside show) by Ian Mayer ripped from The Fader

A random myspace bulletin check on a Sunday night train bore juicy fruit last night.  After missing out on tickets for the Vauxhall show, I found that Flying Lotus would be playing London again in an hour or so at Plastic People.  Heading into the dark box was a pretty different story to Theo Parrish the night before.  Where for Theo, there was a nice amount of space & air to compliment his breezy show, tonight, FWD was a proper pit – a mass of twitching frames & shuffling feet.  Kode 9 played an alien breed of rhythms to coax human muscles into new forms, then after a number of rewinds, passed over to homme du jour, Flying Lotus.  If dancefloors could dream, it would sound something like this.  Echoes of dubs past, left floating in dusty, stagnant echo chambers were called upon to drift and shuffle past each other, their ragged frames mutated through the sheer velocity of their travel, leaving searing, acidic traces behind of their own particular strain of low frequency radiation.  Condensed hardcore continuum history lesson.  Lotus on Fire.  Check the mp3…http://dubstep.lv/forum/viewtopic.php?t=719&sid=eafdd7d0811168fbc1a557b8ffedd90f

BTW… at the start of the FlyLo set, where it all stops and the MC is all like, “We’ve got some technicals… I thought that was the tune”  Well, to me, that shit sounded pretty good too.  More ‘technicals’ please.

BTW part 2… 42 minutes in – Kode 9.  Pitch shifting, mangled, C21, attention deficit version of early 90s house.  If you know what that tune’s called & where I can buy it.  Comment and let me know.

BTW part 3… essential reading – Kode 9 & Derek Walmsley  unedited Wire magazine interview transcript. http://www.thewire.co.uk/articles/2439/?pageno=1

‘When I’m sixty-four’, Cluster at Rich Mix, London


Photo – unknown source

Picture yourself at sixty-four.  Now seventy-four.  Now forget what you just imagined & watch these guys (Cluster – seminal groop) at Rich Mix rinsing some of the wildest sounds this side of the stars:  Hans-Joachim Roedelius (74 years old) &  Dieter Moebius (64 years old).  Post 60… bring it on.

I wasn’t sure what to expect at all… the journey there held premonitions of a trip down memory lane… Old original kit-porn fest for the analog crew… or worst-case scenario, some awful and disappointingly out of touch sounding new stuff.  None of these were even slightly accurate.  Was thinking that ‘memory lane x kit-porn’ would’ve been just fine but Roedelius and Moebius had other plans for the (brilliantly) youthful crowd (had this been held on the Southbank somewhere, it would’ve been totally different).  If there was ever an SMS, letter, phone call, or conversation even that included a mission statement type exchange about this show, the key word could only have been ‘Schlagverstand’ (rough translation – ‘blow minds’).  And minds were blown for sure.  Skittering insectoid beats and tones that you’d expect to her coming from a particularly enlightened & avant obsessed teenager’s overheating laptop shook neutrons and neurons.  Come back soon!  Play Plastic People.  Blow minds.