Tuesday, 31 August 2010

Shook in South Africa

Shook Mag 09

Oooh pretty. Yep, my favourite magazine is out, the long awaited South Africa special. It's not really a magazine, it's more like a beautiful collectors item coffee table book split in to issues you find yourself re-reading months later. This issue includes Bilal, DJ Spinn and Chicago Footworking, Black Coffee + Culoe De Song, BLK JKS meet Malombo, Sud Electronic, The Routes of South African Jazz, Araminta de Clermont, Busi Mhlongo, Chimurenga Magazine, Thandiswa Mazwai, Spoek Mathambo, Sun Ra Arkestra, Nick Rosen, Champeta – Soundsystem Colombia, Freetown photographs, The Art of Sampling plus all your favourite regulars (Welson Creep, WE ARE…)

All for £4.50 here, from a newsagent or record shop, or if you're in the US from Borders and Barnes & Noble from next week.

(PS, they're not paying me to write this post, I just genuinely love this magazine).

Monday, 30 August 2010

Jamie Woon "Night Air"

I have come to the realisation Jamie Woon is one of my favourite living singers*. I know him though so I hope he doesn't read that and think I'm a weird stalker (of the 101,937 views of his song Spirits on Youtube at least 100,000 were me so I suppose I am a bit of a musical stalker).

He is finally releasing a new single in September, and after years of hitting replay on his Myspace page and Youtube videos, there are rumours his album is coming out soon too! I love Night Air, unfortunately I saw the acoustic version below numerous times before hearing the radio friendly version above. It doesn't leave me with quite the same sense of incredulity and intense goosebumps that hearing the song live does, but it wipes the floor with everything in the charts (in my opinion). I will be supporting this campaign with every fibre of my being, so if you aren't a fan you may want to avoid me for the next few months.

*Post updated 9.9.2010

Sunday, 29 August 2010

Video: Sage Francis "Love The Lie"

I'm personally not a huge fan of Sage Francis musically but I do love this video (ah, robot love). It also illustrates a point I've spoken to a few people about this week - basically I've been ranting about how so many hip hop artists seem to set the creative bar for their work by comparing it to other hip hop artists, rather than drawing inspiration from and comparing themselves to whoever is making the most exciting and innovative art out there regardless of genre or art form. I don't lay the blame solely at their door either - I see so few hip hop journalists, bloggers and industry folk willing to be really honest when a piece of work (particularly from a big name), is bland, repetitive, devoid of meaning, or creatively barren. This is probably a longer post for another day, but for now - thank you Sage, and to all artists who push the creative envelope.

MP3/ Stream: Taylor McFerrin - "Early Riser" preview

I always check for new material from Taylor McFerrin, and this is interesting, I was expecting this project to feature more of his vocals but so far it seems to be largely instrumental (apart from Ryat who sounds very reminiscent of Bjork), and quite diverse stylistically. I particularly like the piano on "Awake To You", and hope to hear more of that on his forthcoming album Early Riser. Enjoy.

Taylor McFerrin - Track Preview from EARLY RISER by Taylor McFerrin

Saturday, 28 August 2010

Retourner à Belleville

It never ceases to amaze me how many people still haven't seen this brilliant film from 2003 (I thought I'd told everyone in the world to see it)! I only write about music at PMOI but I think Belleville Rendez-Vous' fantastic soundtrack qualifies a quick post here. I just saw a wonderful new film entitled The Illusionist by the same team behind Belleville and it reminded me of how amazing that film is. If you haven't seen it yet, please do - three glamorous ageing, frog-eating triplet singers have to help Madame Souza and her dog Bruno save her grandson who is kidnapped during the Tour de France, to a brilliant jazz soundtrack...

Thursday, 26 August 2010

Download: Ghostpoet ft Rox - To Something


Loving this gorgeous unofficial remix of "She Just Likes To Fight" by Four Tet that Ghostpoet put up on Soundcloud yesterday. "There's Love In You" by Four Tet is one of my favourite albums of this year and Ghostpoet is one of my favourite new artists (or new to me anyway), so I got a little bit overexcited when I stumbled across it. Rox does a great job too - it's just a lovely duet, I've listened about 10 times so far, it's giving me serious chills.

To Something Ft. ROX by ghostpoet

Competition: Dâm Funk x Rustie x Dimlite x Tokimonsta x Paul White @ Koko 4th Sept


Yep, I have TWO pairs of tickets to give away for this quite frankly breathtaking line up. All you need to do is email (info@putmeonit.com) with the subject line "Dâm Funk Ticket Competition" or tweet (@putmeonit) me the answer to the simple question below,  by 6pm Friday 27th Aug and I will pick the winners at random.

"What is Dâm Funk's live band called?"

You can find more info on the event here, it's happening at Koko on Saturday 4th September - don't leave it to pay day to buy your tickets if you don't win the competition, that's blatantly everyone else's plan and they'll sell out!

Just to warm you up a little more, check out this new sampler video for Dimlite's forthcoming EP "My Human Wears Acedia Shreds", sounding so juicy it's almost edible.

Dimlite – My Human Wears Acedia Shreds from Ehstrawlogy Produkte on Vimeo.

Tuesday, 24 August 2010

Video: Björk – The Comet Song

Björk's song for the Moomins film is finally here! It's basically a summary of the film - a giant comet lands in the Moomins land and they are trying to save it. Erm, anyway the proceeds from the single will go to the UNICEF childrens charities in Pakistan, it was meant to come out on iTunes today but I can't find it yet, I'll update here when I do.

You can now buy this single on iTunes

Video: Andreya Triana "Lost Where I Belong" Live in Croatia

Andreya is such a great live performer, and I was really honoured to have her do a short set for PMOI at Soundwave Festival in Croatia in July. This video is actually taken from another set later in the day but I kept the camera rolling, and it was just gorgeous. The ladies doing BVs are none other than Tanya Auclair and Milly Blue, with Jacob Quistgaard on guitar. 

Andreya's beautiful debut album "Lost Where I Belong" came out yesterday, you can (and should), buy it here. The first song on the album "Draw The Stars" is also iTunes Single of the Week so you can grab it for free for a limited time via iTunes.

Huge thank yous to Zainab Adamu for editing & Shernay Latouche for the audio.

Monday, 23 August 2010

Video: Martyn "Great Lengths"

Martyn,Great Lengths Video

*Inhales sharply*. This is stunning. Unfortunately embedding has been disabled so you have to click the image or this link in order to watch it, but please do. Directed by Dutch film maker Ramón Maria Gieling, the title of my post is misleading for this is indeed a film, "with its own secret story to tell" as Gieling describes his work. Lovely to see an electronic producer get in front of a screen with such confidence.

Saturday, 21 August 2010

How to Get Featured On a Music Blog.

I get asked this question several times a week, and though I have a sneaking suspicion it's often an ego stroking tactic or worse a blackmail technique, "but you said if I did this you would write about my music!", I generally take the time to answer in case it's genuine.

My favourite campaign last year, Shafiq Husayn "En' A-Free-Ka" [Plug Research]

Firstly I have to say, this is aimed at emerging independent artists who don't know very much about marketing & PR, and start-up "labels" (who probably have a lot of good will but don't have distribution or a marketing & PR budget, rendering themselves pretty pointless but hey). This list won't work for all music blogs (especially the big ones who run more like online magazines), but it's a start.


1. The most important thing is to make sure you're ready. If you send out underdeveloped music you've blown the first impression, and we won't be eager for your next email. Test it out on a few people you trust to be honest with you before sending it out to blogs.

2. The story - who are you and why are you and your music exciting? Where are you going? Who are your peers? Work it out, it's hard but it's important because if you don't know then your press release & campaign will probably be vague and ineffective.

3. Research: if you don't know what kind of press you want, you probably won't get it so find out - especially before paying someone to get it for you. If doing it yourself make a shortlist of bloggers you think might genuinely be interested in your music & familiarize yourself with what they post.


4. Presentation is important! Get some great artwork and press shots done (quality videos too if you can), so that before we even listen to your music we know you're serious and you're artistic.

5. If you are sending out links to your music, make sure we can listen online before choosing to download because our hard drives are groaning.

6. The press release: A lot of bloggers are not writers they're curators, so you need a well written paragraph which gives some interesting key information about the project, not a 2 page press release. Bloggers love quotes and so should you - they get to cut and paste, and you get to talk about the project in your own words to their audience.

The Approach

 7. You don't have to hire a PR, but if you do make sure they're credible - do they get thanked by artists & bloggers online? Do they have lots of followers on Twitter/ Facebook (ie do they know a lot of people)? Do they genuinely like your music, because if they don't you're just a job they'll probably do bare minimum work on. Ask to see previous communications they've sent out, and try asking artists who get good press who they work with. Remember! The best PR in the world will struggle if your music isn't ready and your marketing approach is wrong.

8. DIY PR - great for building up contacts you can keep. Make a shortlist of 20 key bloggers you think would genuinely like your work and send them personalised emails. It's way more effective than sending a blast to a random 2000 bloggers, and you won't just end up in a spam filter.

9. Tip: ask a few key bloggers for their feedback or pitch to offer exclusives a couple of weeks before your music comes out. A lot of us like to support!

Following Up

10. A lot of bloggers get hundreds of emails per day. If we don't reply it's not personal, and we are usually grateful if you send a polite follow up email or two.

11. Say thank you! It's amazing what we'll do for artists who are grateful and friendly (we send your music to other bloggers & influential people for free, put you up if you come to our city, help promote & book you shows...) Bloggers are often people with big on and offline networks and we like to share information - make sure it's good.

12. Harness data and use it. If you put out a project for free, use Bandcamp, collect email addresses and stay in touch with your mailing list, it's probably full of bloggers, journalists, DJs and music nerds, not just fans - it's your PR list. 

What NOT to do

> SPAM. Don't send unidentified links on Twitter, don't promote yourself on our Facebook walls, don't send emails people can't unsubscribe from (use a mailing list provider). We'll just block you.

> Send too much "polyfiller" content: "here's the EXCLUSIVE behind the scenes clip number 278 of the making of the trailer of the prelude to the mixtape!" - we'll stop reading your emails, it's not exclusive, and when you really have something of worth it'll get lost.

> Don't send low quality content: Youtube clips with still images over your track, you rapping to your camera phone, random MP3s with no artwork or press release - come correct.

> Slag Bloggers/ blogging off as a whole online then expect our support. We're nerds. We see all. 

> Think it's us just "hating" for no reason, I promise it's not personal. We love good content - just make some. There's a blogger out there for everyone.

Video: Nosaj Thing - Coat of Arms

Headphones or proper speakers required here - please don't listen through your laptop to this one. This track actually gave me a slightly worrying feeling in my chest, like there was too much pressure on my heart and lungs, so perhaps you should skip this one if you have a dodgy heart. Nosaj Thing will be playing in the basement at the C.A.M.P. on August 25th and the Hare & Hound in Birmingham on the 26th.

DJ Derek Documentary

DJ Derek pt. 1 from Grand Finale on Vimeo.

DJ Derek pt. 2 from Grand Finale on Vimeo.

Annoyingly I can't remember which of my Twitter friends put up a link to this but whoever it was they made my day. DJ Derek is such a legend full of amazing stories, and I could have happily watched an hour long documentary about the guy. Enjoy!

Video & MP3: Cee-Lo "F**k You"

Hahaha. Download here.

Pins and Digits - Julien Dyne

I mentioned Julien Dyne in passing here when his album dropped last year, and I thought it might still be worthwhile to revisit it ten months on, especially after Electric Wire Hustle's recent visit to the UK.

A Kiwi drummer/producer from New Zealand, his sound is all those good swung drums, afrobeat horns and trippy synths. He is also a painter and sculptor.

An informative interview can be found here.

As far as the album goes, there is so much variety, to keep you on your toes all the way through. "Stained Glass Fresh Frozen" is his take on the half swung-half straight soul (featuring Mara TK of EWH), and "Incredulous" has been a favourite of mine to play out for the dancefloor. The minute-long interludes of experimental drum patterns gives a suggestion of how this album came to be - it's a meshing together of ideas and sketches, some more developed than others. I like that looseness and openness.

Cop the album here


Tuesday, 17 August 2010

Download: Bilal "Restart"


So "Airtight's Revenge" is out for pre-order right now, and this is the first single from the album. I don't normally blog music before I've listened but I actually can't listen to it until I post this widget and do the download thing below if that makes sense. So, erm, hope it's good. *I will revisit this post shortly.

Video: DTMD "A Loan for the Lonely"

DTMD - A Loan For The Lonely from dunc & toine makin' dollas on Vimeo.

19 years old and winning. This video is so dope - I love the way it was recorded live, yet more refreshing goodness from one of my favourite new hip hop groups DTMD. This song is taken from their forthcoming LP Makin' Dollas which I can't wait to hear, I have such a good feeling about these guys, so far everything they've put out has been quality and honest - they're really carving their own path.

If you still haven't got their free EP "The Basics" stop being rubbish and download it.

Video: El-P "Time Won’t Tell"

Taken from El-P's new album instrumental album WeAreAllGoingToBurnInHell Megamixxx3, this video will make your day. The music, the t-shirts, the landscape, the Stand By Me vibe (sad 80s movie for you young 'uns), the whole thing points to something sinister and destructive - just click play and let your heart soar.

Via Nialler 9

Sunday, 15 August 2010

Download & Video: Department of Eagles

The lovely Tanya Auclair introduces me to gorgeous music (hers included), pretty much every time I go to her house. The most recent addition was Department of Eagles, a project that Grizzly Bear's Daniel Rossen got involved in with his NY Uni room mate Fred Nicolaus in 2000. It's just so gorgeous, I even found myself wanting to buy their Christmas album ("A Johnny Glaze Christmas: Classical Snatches and Samples a Go-Go"), but I feel in love with "In Ear Park" (2008) in particular. They're like a gorgeous lovechild of Radiohead and The Beatles and erm, Grizzly Bear. Anyway, if you put ballet dancing soliders in your video you win as far as I'm concerned - pas de chat bang bang.

They've kindly uploaded a couple of free tracks for free download, so grab  In Ear Park & No One Does It Like You here

Video: Miguel Atwood-Ferguson Ensemble ft Bilal "Someday We'll All Be Free"

Miguel Atwood-Ferguson Ensemble "Someday We'll All Be Free" feat Bilal from MIguel Atwood-Ferguson on Vimeo.

Still catching up on this weeks treats; Miguel Atwood-Ferguson + Bilal + Donny Hathaway = magic words. I really want to move to LA now. I may have to kidnap Miguel when he arrives in London and try to brainwash him in to staying here instead. Download the track here

Co-produced by the homie Andrew Lojero, do-er of great things.

Download: K-OS "The Anchorman Mixtape"

kOS The Anchorman Mixtape k OS   The Anchorman Mixtape

This week has been so mad I haven't had time to blog about this despite listening several times with glee - I really like this mixtape, and I'm not a big fan of mixtapes. I have adored K-os for years, and his most recent album Yes! has been on serious rotation at my house (not too sure when the UK release date is). Personally, I just want to see him live.

Download: K-os "The Anchorman Mixtape" here

Friday, 13 August 2010

Photos/ Review: Accidental Powercut ft Fiona Bevan, Ghost Poet & Sound of Rum

Accidental Powercut

The legendary Charlie Dark and Andrew Missingham's Accidental Powercut is easily one of the most interesting and inspiring gigs I've been to this year. The venue is called Quintessentially Soho at The House of St Barnabas - it's an incredibly beautiful chapel with amazing acoustics and the smell of Harvest Sunday Service, set within a slightly maze-like private members club. After making a (not very optional) charity donation at the door you're given a token, the colour of which allows you to see certain parts of the show - I nodded my head feigning comprehension and decided to go with the flow. Luckily I got to see the whole thing.

Accidental Powercut

The whole idea behind the night is that there is no electricity involved other than the lighting, so no microphones, no computers, amps, monitors, nothing. Just instruments and a very quiet audience - it's a true test of skill and er, balls. Kicking off was spoken word artist Kate Tempest, a performer with no lack of either of those things. I've seen her live several times before but something about the intimacy of the gig really seemed to soften her around the edges, and I heard a lot more humour in her lyrics than I'd previously noted. No one raps about rapping quite like Kate, "yeah I love your shoes mate, but where's your f*cking skill?". 

Accidental Powercut

Next up was singer songwriter Fiona Bevan who is completely adorable and seems to live in the wrong era, her songwriting evokes an almost fairytale world as she sings about moths and sailors, pirates and diamonds, and the Revel and the Devil "you're the one who puts the fun in to the funeral".

Accidental Powercut

Fiona was followed by Ghostpoet. I have to admit I liked his EP but I really wasn't expecting to be quite so blown away by him live. He may have had the softest voice of the evening but there's some kind of energy coming off the guy that's really exciting, listening to him made me feel the way I did the first time I saw artist like Roots Manuva, Ty and Tawiah live. He doesn't leap around, in a way I think it was the reserved yet intense delivery of his music that made it so engaging, his song "Finished I Ain't" is somewhere between a sinister rallying cry and an impassioned note to self. I'm really interested to see his more electronic show now.   

Accidental Powercut

The evening closed with a set from Sound of Rum, Kate Tempests' band who delivered more of a funk tinged hip hop take on Kate's sound. Earlier in the night she talked about thinking of herself as a poet after being a rapper for a long time, but the  hungry MC never seemed very far below the surface and the band really allows her to fly. For some reason they got carried away and left what they felt was their best material to the end but nevertheless it was a very strong and characteristically passionate set.
Accidental Powercut

Next month, 2nd September, the line up includes Talvin Singh, Corey Mwamba and Tinashe (and hopefully more magic tricks from Charlie Dark). I recommend you arrive very early.

A huge thank you to Philip Edwards for the beautiful photography.

Thursday, 12 August 2010

The Real Point of Music Blogging.

Record collector voice
I just came across a list on Mashable entitled "Top 5 Tips for Aspiring Music Bloggers", and I have to say I felt that it missed the point. The article's stance largely assumes that people think music blogging is a "job", one that you must be exceptionally knowledgeable to do before starting, that people who want to be music bloggers start out wanting to write for other blogs and get paid for it, that it is about being an authority on a niche subject, and that you shouldn't be too negative.

The article is full of quotes from lots of men who run well respected music blogs that (apparently) make money. I only know one person who makes decent money from their music blog, it has become an organisation, and it has been running for 11 years. The vast majority of music bloggers I know do it because they love it, because the new video from so and so keeps them up at 4am, and they want to share it with people. It's a great feeling when someone says you've made their day, they enjoyed a live show you recommended, you've filled up their iPod with music they love, or they want to debate something you've commented on, and for most of us that's the payoff. 

Personally, I believe that blogging is a great opportunity to change the way things work culturally. Journalism fits neatly with everything in the Mashable list above, but blogging is not journalism, it's self publishing - no editor, no stakeholders, no real rules, anyone can do it, you have ultimate freedom to write what you like, and that's the point (if you don't like it, don't read it). In my experience, back in the day, when there were lots of music magazines, record shops, DJs had to have vinyl, record labels were rolling in it etc etc, a lot of the gatekeepers to the music world seemed (often but not always) to be the kind of guys who felt the need to patronizingly "school you", not share something. I used to call them Music Fascists. 

Put Me On It started because of that. I used to feel too uncomfortable and intimidated to go in to record shops. It felt like I didn't speak the same nerdy language so I stayed away. Then a few years ago I got a laptop, and it was like a whole new world opened up - I got really excited and decided to share my journey with my friends and anyone else who cared to read my blog, and invited them to share with me. This is not a space where I try to impress anyone with my knowledge or make lots of money, this is a space where I share music I'm honestly excited about and inspired by, and I write with my friends in mind. It seems to have paid off since now I work as a consultant for record labels and companies who want to communicate more directly with their audiences online (though I can't tell you how much this annoys the Music Fascists).  

I believe music blogging is a unique opportunity for anyone who wants to share music they're passionate about and interested by, to be really honest about it, to support the artists they believe in, to positively impact the music industry, and to inspire the people around them - the more of that the better. I think it's sad when bloggers don't fully take up that opportunity, and they're motivated by traffic stats, being seen as "up to date", or heaven forbid "cool". Those things negatively impact on the way music is made, audiences abilities to sift through all the rubbish, and they devalue all of the quality that is out there. If you want to blog for the right reasons and you have something interesting to say you need no validation -  and don't let anyone tell you otherwise.

When you strip everything but love and passion from the equation, I believe music blogging is an opportunity for a democratic cultural revolution, not a job.         

Video: Computer Jay "What Should I Think Of You"

Apologies - I have next to no info on this other than it's rather fresh. I had the pleasure of interviewing Computer Jay recently, one third of Dam Funk's band Master Blazter, he seems like an absolutely top bloke and he mentioned he has a lot of new projects in the pipeline so stay tuned...

Via Lowriders

Wednesday, 11 August 2010

Video: Waajeed x Invincible "Detroit Summer"

Invincible + Waajeed - "Detroit Summer"/"Emergence" from EMERGENCE Media on Vimeo.

I like this. It almost goes without saying I've been a fan of Invincible and Waajeed for a long time, in fact the first place I heard about Invincible was on Detroit Winter from the classic Platinum Pied Pipers album. What I really like about this video is a lyric and theme that sticks in my mind from Detroit Winter - "if you can't take the winter then you don't deserve summer". Detroit has been through a lot but according Invincible's lyrics on this new track Detroit Summer "You call Motown a ghost-town, but the city's vibrant!" - it certainly looks that way from this video, due in part I imagine to community projects like the Detroit Summer Live Arts Media Project which features here. Much respect to those artists who choose to stick it out through the winter, and don't run off to the land of constant summer...

Buy the "Detroit Summer" b/w "Emergence" 7" single (free download included) here: store.emergencemedia.org/

Sunday, 8 August 2010



Click HERE to download 30 tracks lovingly chosen from the last month or so in blog land... 

Full tracklist

Maze (My Dry Wet Mess Remix) - Actress
Tangerine f. T.I. - Big Boi
Best Napkin I Ever Had - Black Lips
How Dare You - Black Milk
Build and Destroy feat. Coultrain - Black Spade
Da Art of Storytelling Feat. Andre 3000 - Black Spade
The Return Of DST - De La Soul
Sometimes I Cry - Eric Benet
Love Line (feat. Blu) - Exile
Different f. Mos Def - Goapele
Sycamore - J. Dilla
Driftwood - James Pants
Dance Or Die (Nirobi Re Edit) - Janelle Monae
I Am Dead (CFCF Remix) - Jori Hulkkonen
Shingaling Shingaling - Kako & Orchestra, ft Azuquita
You Don't Wash (Actress Remix) - Kode9
Repercussions - Lauryn Hill
Fantasia Pt. 1 - Lloyd Miller and The Heliocentrics
I Need You (produced by Nottz) - Mayer Hawthorne
Classic - Med ft Talib Kweli prod. by Madlib
Bat Phone - Mickey Rocks
Phat Kat - Lovely (Re-Edit) - Mr Beatnick
Am I Real? - Nite Jewel
Bidding War - Pusha T
Tears Of Joy (Feat. Cee-Lo) - Rick Ross
What We Held On To - Shigeto
Well... - Stik Figa & Donwill
Yank My Chain - Tanya Auclair
As The World Turns - Trek Life ft Olivier DaySoul prod. Oddisee
Goin Back ft. Cassidy & Xzibit - 1982 (Statik Selektah & Termanology)

*WE LOVE... is a big one click download of carefully selected individual tracks sourced from reputable blogs & artists we love. Please email us (info@putmeonit.com) if we've uploaded a non-promo track in error or to send us something you love.

Saturday, 7 August 2010

Video: Chilly Gonzales – I Am Europe

This is hilarious and brilliant. I mentioned that Chilly has a film about "jazz chess" called The Ivory Tower coming out, I'm not sure of the date yet but an album of the same name is dropping on September 14th. I can't wait to see the film, this video features clips from it - Chilly plays Hershell, Tiga plays Thadeus, and apparently they both fall in love with Marsha, played by Peaches.  

Hershell & Thadeus, two chess-playing brothers and their unhealthy rivalry over both the chessboard and a woman. Hershell is a chess purist, the prodigal son, Thadeus a disciplined, ruthless competitor. After 4 nomadic years in Europe, in quixotic pursuit of 'Jazz Chess' (chess for chess' sake, no winner, no loser, only beautiful positions), Hershell returns home...


Friday, 6 August 2010

Download: Zachary "Shigeto" Saginaw "What We Held On To" EP

I came across Shigeto when I was in BK this Summer. Mixing live drums with electronics, he puts on an interesting show with lights and visuals. Mostly downtempo, he nevertheless keeps the floor moving along.

The new EP is available to download here free from the label's website.

Glen Ballard Talks About Production

I've been meaning to write this post since the first MF Social event put on by Doña Amelia which featured "Second Hand Sureshots" by Stones Throw which followed 4 producers as they came up with beats from records they found in thrift stores.

I thought this would be far too geeky for most people but talking to people afterwards the screening, I found that most people found the process of making music fascinating and informative. Whether you make music or not, electronic or otherwise the clips I found here might provide some interesting viewing.

Click here to watch

Thursday, 5 August 2010

Video: Janelle Monae "Cold War"

Right, you know I always keep it real on here so I'll continue in that tradition now. I love this. It made my day. I don't believe the tears are contrived (for all you cynical folks out there). I'm a massive fan of course, but the reason I love this in particular is that I feel Janelle Monae's lyrics occasionally get lost when people see the style or the dancing, or even hear her amazing voice. The reason I am such a massive fan is her lyrics - if you can tell the truth, and the very important truth at that, in a pop song in such a way that it might take people a minute to stop dancing around or singing along to realise the import of what you're saying then you've won. That makes you my musical hero. This video sheds all window dressing and delivers the message very directly, and her tears at the point where she sings

"I'm trying to find my feet
I was made to believe there's something wrong with me
And it hurts my heart..." 

Seem entirely justified (if you read her Twitter you'll know she seems quite heart on sleeve, crying at films etc) though I can understand they might be unexpected given the "android" persona we often see in interviews. Anyway, it's not for me to defend this lady - I just wanted to be clear on what I think about this video: I think it's perfect. 

Via Pitchfork

Wednesday, 4 August 2010

Film Review: Gainsbourg

I went to a press preview of this a month ago but I couldn't bring myself to review it at first due to something really sad I found out whilst researching it. Here goes. Serge Gainsbourg (1928 – 1991) is the kind of musician everyone is at least vaguely aware of (you have heard the controversially orgasmic "Je t'aime... moi non plus" at some point) but I had very little awareness of his life other than his track record with beautiful iconic women.

He lived through a really interesting period in time, the son of Russian Jewish parents who fled to Paris because of the Russian revolution in 1917, only to have to flee the Nazis. The film opens on an extremely advanced for his age pre-pubescent Serge (or Lucien as he was still called at the time), trying to seduce a model from a life drawing class, taking her drinking in a cafe and singing a song about cocaine with a music hall singer. His father promptly sends him away to boarding school where he has to hide from the Nazis in the woods at night and develops an imaginary friend who follows him throughout the rest of the film.

I have to say I found Serge's grotesque but fascinating imaginary friend, created by the artists involved in Pans Labyrinth, and his relationship with Serge as he grows up the most exciting part of the film. At times Serge the adult painter and musician comes across like a caricature of a cool smoking French artiste, so the turmoil his alter ego creates is really intriguing and revealing. Also the scenes with the women in his life, all gorgeous and enigmatic, tell a large part of the musical story which is like sitting on a French rollercoaster in the 60s with two fingers in the air. It's a beautifully made film but I did find myself thinking on occasion that things didn't quite add up. I couldn't quite understand Serge's rise to epic stardom or success with incredible beauties such as Juliette Greco, Brigitte Bardot and Jane Birkin. Perhaps despite the very believable performance from Eric Elmosnino, Serge himself had a mystique that couldn't be denied.

Gainsbourg's gradual slide in to a rather sadly predictable pop star fate of drink, drugs, fags, illness, family collapse etc etc later in the movie made me feel slightly miserable in the way you might after spending half an hour with a very depressed person, and I suppose with a biopic you can't really invent a happy ending. Despite that I would recommend watching it because it was such a strange and fascinating life and the man was such an interesting and important musical icon (when you offend the Vatican you must be doing something of note).

Whilst watching I thought how familiar the actress playing Jane Birkin was, so when I got home I looked her up and it was the model and actress Lucy Gordon. I went to school with Lucy at Oxford High in the mid 90s, she was a couple of years older than me and we all thought she was amazing after being discovered by Select Models at the Clothes Show (and according to rumour) going out with Leonardo DiCaprio. Most of the older girls were a bit standoffish but Lucy always had a lovely smile for us, so despite everyone in my year becoming jealous, anorexic and dragging their emaciated limbs to the Clothes Show they couldn't hate her. I read that Lucy committed suicide last year in Paris during the later stages of this film being made, and the film is dedicated to her. May she rest in peace.    

Stream: Jono McCleery "Tomorrow"


   Jono McCleery - Tomorrow (Radio Edit) by ameliaideh

My lovely friend Ross from the Part Time Heroes, who have been working with Jono lately, sent me this a while back and now it's out on Ninja Tune as a single - happy times. I love Jono McCleerys voice, the first time I saw him live a few years ago I cried, and it wasn't just me, the whole room cried. This is a little lighter than the devastating heartwrenchers I was masochistically hoping for but it's beautiful.

Synopsis: Warren G Regulate ft Nate Dogg

Far and away the best Wikipedia entry I have ever read, and so had to share.


On a cool, clear night (typical to Southern California) Warren G travels through his neighborhood, searching for women with whom he might initiate sexual intercourse. He has chosen to engage in this pursuit alone.

Nate Dogg, having just arrived in Long Beach, seeks Warren. On his way to find Warren, Nate passes a car full of women who are excited to see him. Regardless, he insists to the women that there is no cause for excitement.

Warren makes a left turn at 21st Street and Lewis Ave, in the East Hill/Salt Lake neighborhood[6], where he sees a group of young men enjoying a game of dice together. He parks his car and greets them. He is excited to find people to play with, but to his chagrin, he discovers they intend to relieve him of his material possessions. Once the hopeful robbers reveal their firearms, Warren realizes he is in a less than favorable predicament.

Meanwhile, Nate passes the women, as they are low on his list of priorities. His primary concern is locating Warren. After curtly casting away the strumpets (whose interest in Nate was such that they crashed their automobile), he serendipitously stumbles upon his friend, Warren G, being held up by the young miscreants.

Warren, unaware that Nate is surreptitiously observing the scene unfold, is in disbelief that he is being robbed. The perpetrators have taken jewelry and a name brand designer watch from Warren, who is so incredulous that he asks what else the robbers intend to steal. This is most likely a rhetorical question.

Observing these unfortunate proceedings, Nate realizes that he may have to use his firearm to deliver his friend from harm.

The tension crescendos as the robbers point their guns to Warren's head. Warren senses the gravity of his situation. He cannot believe the events unfolding could happen in his own neighborhood. As he imagines himself in a fantastical escape, he catches a glimpse of his friend, Nate.

Nate has seventeen cartridges to expend (sixteen residing in the pistol's magazine, with a solitary round placed in the chamber and ready to be fired) on the group of robbers, and he uses many of them. Afterward, he generously shares the credit for neutralizing the situation with Warren, though it is clear that Nate did all of the difficult work. Putting congratulations aside, Nate quickly reminds himself that he has committed multiple homicides to save Warren before letting his friend know that there are females nearby if he wishes to fornicate with them.

Warren recalls that it was the promise of copulation that coaxed him away from his previous activities, and is thankful that Nate knows a way to satisfy these urges.

Nate quickly finds the women who earlier crashed their car on Nate's account. He remarks to one that he is fond of her physical appeal. The woman, impressed by Nate's singing ability, asks that he and Warren allow her and her friends to share transportation. Soon, both friends are driving with automobiles full of women to the East Side Motel, presumably to consummate their flirtation in an orgy.

The third verse is more expository, with Warren and Nate explaining their G Funk musical style. Warren displays his bravado by claiming that individuals with equivalent knowledge could not even attempt to approach his level of lyrical mastery. There follows a brief discussion of the genre's musicological features, with special care taken to point out that in said milieu the rhythm is not in fact the rhythm, as one might assume, but actually the bass. Similarly the bass serves a purpose closer to that which the treble would in more traditional musical forms. Nate goes on to note that if any third party smokes as he does, they would find themselves in a state of intoxication daily (from Nate's other works, it can be inferred that the substance referenced is marijuana). Nate concludes his delineation of the night by issuing a vague threat to "busters," suggesting that he and Warren will further "regulate" any potential incidents in the future (presumably by engaging their enemies with small arms fire).

Via @AlexChase and @Hot_Chip

Tuesday, 3 August 2010

Video: Sarah Love Soul Power> True UK Stories - Big Trev

Love this - Sarah is spot on, it's so important for people to document culture and to honour and expose people who are responsible for where things are today. What an amazing guy Big Trev seems to be, and this video is pretty educational for people like me who live down the motorway...

Big up Spine TV

Video: Exile "Your Summer Song" Remix ft. J. Mitchell

Exile - Your Summer Song (Remix Ft. J. Mitchell) from Dirty Science on Vimeo.

So pleased this tune got a video, it featured waayyy back on We Love Vol 2 and I'm still listening to it. Exile's AM/FM (a remix project of the Radio album) is coming out on 31st August on Plug Research, and it arrived in the post this morning so I'll have a listen and let you know what I think shortly. It features and all star cast including Blu, Fashawn, Alchemist, Evidence, Blame One, Free the Robots, Samiyam, Take, DJ Day, Muhsinah, Grouch & Eligh, Aloe Blacc, Shafiq Husayn and more (so it better be good).

Thank you to J.Kim

Interview: Terri Walker x Pinboard Blog

Aw, big up to my lovely friends at Pinboard Blog for this interview with Miss Terri Walker - the woman is absolutely hilarious, and of course very talented. I really like what she says about England not really being for black people - not because we're not welcome here (I often feel more welcome in London than almost any other city), but as a sheer numbers thing the audience for less commercial/ dance music orientated black music is small and it's ok to recognise that. I'm quite impressed I managed to think anything other than "boobies" considering.

Monday, 2 August 2010

Video: YULT ft. Tanya Auclair - Inland Empire [Live]

Finally finally finally! I have been obsessing over this song by PMOI fam Yult featuring Tanya Auclair for weeks now - the stunning EP "Animal Inside" won't be out for a while but now you can shiver along with me to this incredible live version of "Inland Empire", so beautifully shot by Will Hanke. I think this is one of the best examples I've heard so far of the purity of Tanyas' voice and originality of her songwriting, to a brilliant composition from Yult.

For free music from Tanya Auclair download the PMOI exclusive Thrum EP here.

Future Download: J Dilla - Donut Shop


Argh, two Stones Throw related posts in a row! I'm officially one of them. You know who I'm talking about. I promise I don't think hip hop died in February 2006. However, I would very much like the MP3s of the 6 Dilla beats which comprised the Serato collab project Donut Shop a while back, and apparently all you have to do is sign up for the Stones Throw mailing list to get 'em.

Video/ Stream: MED Returns with a MEDical Card...

MEDical Card from Stones Throw on Vimeo.

I was going back over those hilarious classic Hip Hop graphs and charts over the weekend with a friend and I would love to do a pie chart of the Stones Throw marketing budget (Mayer Hawthorne > everybody else). It's not really my place to speculate but it's quite fun. Anyway, the budget nature of this video compliments the plot. Before you ask apparently the sample is “So Fine” by Howard Johnson from the album “Keepin’ Love New”(1982).

Real talk I'm not a massive fan of MED as a rapper, but that doesn't stop me checking for his music excitedly because the beats are always hawt. A cop out? Maybe, but if you haven't jumped up and down like a fool to a tune with a sub-par rapper on it and just ignored them because of the beat you take life far more seriously than I (to be clear I don't consider MED sub-par, just not one of my favs). Push Comes to Shove from 2005 was full of bangers and I completely rinsed it. From what I'm hearing don't expect the forthcoming album to push the envelope of originality but  if you're a big fan of that early 2000s Madlib/ Dilla sound, sounds like he's got you.

   MED - Classic feat. Talib Kweli by stonesthrow

Video: Cee Lo Green - What Part of Forever

I think I love Cee Lo an irrational amount - to the point I don't know how objective I am about his work. His talent just smacks me over the head every time he does something new and I feel a bit dazed and confused. This is on the Twighlight soundtrack - I haven't seen Twighlight because it sounds sh*t (pardon me), however if they like Cee Lo too maybe it's not. Perhaps it too is epic in its simplicity. Erm, yeah.

Sunday, 1 August 2010

LDN Event Listings: August/ September


Sun 1st Aug
> First Word Live w/ Tanya Auclair & Milly Blue @ Vibe Bar
> UK Soul Jam w/ Terri Walker @ Jazz Cafe

Wed 4th Aug
>Wu Tang @ Brixton Academy
>Deviation w/ Quest & Actress @ Gramaphone

Thu 5th Aug
>The Accidental Powercut w/Sound of Rum, Ghostpoet & Fiona Bevan @ Quintessentially Soho at the House of St Barnabas
>Heidi Vogel Live @ Charlie Wrights
>(5th - 8th) The Big Chill Festival w/ M.I.A., Thom Yorke, Kelis, Massive Attack, Bebel Gilberto, Roy Ayers, Caribou, Matthew Herbert @ Eastnor Castle

Fri 6th Aug
>Bebel Gilberto @ Koko
>Standon Calling Festival w/ Buena Vista Social Club, Magic Numbers & Gilles Peterson @ Standon, Hertfordshire

Sat 7th Aug
>Spine TV Studio Session w/ No Cars & Hype Williams @ A Secret Location
>Work It! @ Visions Video Bar
>Man Make Music w/ Wbeeza, George FitzGerald, Bruk, Sketchy + Another Amit @ The Star of Bethnal Green

Tue 10th Aug
>Jay Electronica @ Cargo

Thu 12th Aug
>The Noisettes + Tinashe Live @ The Union Chapel

Sat 14th Aug
>Brainfeeder with Special Guests @ Hearn Street Car Park

Mon 16th Aug
>Flying Lotus Live Film Score: Harry Smiths “Heaven & Earth Magic” @ Tate Modern Starr Auditorium

Wed 18th Aug
>Flying Lotus Presents INFINITY w/ Thundercat, Miguel Atwood-Ferguson, Ravi Coltrane and Rebekah Raff @ The Institute of Contemporary Arts

Sat 21st Aug
>Nonsense with special guest Dego @ Plastic People

Wed 25th Aug
>M.O.P. Live @ Jazz Cafe
>Nosaj Thing @ The C.A.M.P.

Thu 26th Aug
>M.O.P. Live @ Jazz Cafe

Sat 28th Aug
>Nottinghill Carnival
>Urban Nerds Carnival Party w/ Toddla T & MC Serocee , Doorly, Rattus Rattus & Klose One, Heatwave, Sticky, Lady Chann, Katy B, Jayou, Tomb Crew, Princess Nyah, Supra1, Ordio Kid, DRAMA, Dusty Lungs, Daddy Nature @ Hewitt St Car Park

Sun 29th Aug
>Nottinghill Carnival
>Deviation w/ DJ Zinc, Geeneus ft Katy B & Tippa, Groove Chronicles, Martelo, Benji B & Judah @ The C.A.M.P.
>Norman Jay's Good Times Afterparty @ William IV
>Part Time Heroes w/ Greymatter, Brad Baloo & co @ The Metropolitan, Westbourne Park

Mon 30th Aug
>Nottinghill Carnival
>Red Bull Carnival Party w/ Major Lazer, Douser, Poirier, Sticky, Joker, David Rodigan + Drop The Lime @ Under the Westway
 >Dead Prez @ The Forum
>In Case You Missed It w/ Choklate & Terri Walker @ Blag Club

Thu 2nd Sept
>Aesthetic Sounds Live w/ Cecilia Stalin @ Vibe Bar

Fri 3rd Sept
> Work It vs Livin Proof @ Bloomsbury Bowling Lanes

Sat 4th Sept
>Dâm-Funk, Rustie, Tokimonsta & Dimlite @ Koko
>Doctors Orders Presents: The Queens of Hip Hop w/ DJ Yasmin, DJ Kayper, Yarah Bravo, Sahasrara @ The Big Chill House

Mon 6th Sept
>Gonjasufi & The Gaslamp Killer @ Electrowerkz

Wed 8th Sept
>Janelle Monae Live @ Koko

Fri 10th Sept
>FWD>> + Rinse w/ Skream, Zinc, Benga, Caspa, Boy Better Know, Geeneus + Katy B & Tippa, Heartless Crew, Plastician, Elijah & Skilliam, Shy FX@ Fabric

Sat 11th Sept
>"Tongues on Fire: A tribute to the Black Panthers" Dir. David Murray with The Roots, The Last Poets, Doctor L @ The Barbican
>Doctors Orders w/ ?uestlove (DJ Set) & Eric Lau @ East Village

Fri 17th Sept
>Doctors Orders present Frank Nitt, Tanya Morgan, Mystro, Diamond D, DJ Spin Doctor & Snuff @ Plan B
>The Turning Point Festival @ The Roundhouse

Sat 18th Sept
>The Vinyl Exchange w/ Lewis Parker, Mr Thing, Rarekind Records, Evil Ed, Tranqill & co @ The Silver Bullet Finsbury Park

Thu 23rd Sept
>Little Dragon Live @ Koko

Mon 27th Sept
>Pharoahe Monch & Jean Grae @ Jazz Cafe

Wed 29 Sept
>Mulatu Astatke & the Heliocentrics @ The Barbican
>Raheem DeVaughn @ Jazz Cafe
>Mark Ronson & The Business Intl @ Hackney Empire

Thu 30th Sept
>Raheem DeVaughn @ Jazz Cafe


Fri 1st Oct

Thu 14th Oct
>MF Doom @ Brixton Acdemy

Fri 15th Oct
>Orchestre Pol-Rythmo de Cotonou @ Koko

Sun 17th Oct
>Seu Jorge & Almaz Live @ The Roundhouse

Mon 1st Nov
>Big Boi @ The Forum


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