Wednesday, 29 December 2010

Stop Me If You Think That You've Heard This One Before..

Back in the day, Mark Ronson was a bit of a heart-breaker, wasn't he? Easily the best-dressed male celebrity around, he always accessorised his fantastic suits with co-ordinating tie and a coy facial expression. Swoon. He soon caught the eye of the lovely Daisy Lowe, and they became possibly the most attractive couple to be featured in pages of the daily newspapers' trashy pages. Like most girls I know, I had quite the soft spot for Mr. Ronson. Allow us to observe his wonderful sartorial choices for a moment;

Yep, it's a winning formula. An immaculately turned out young man, he could do no wrong. Oh, but wait a minute -

Bleached blonde quiff? Long velvet coat? This picture makes me want to weep a little bit.He is starting to look dangerously like Duckie nowadays. But at least he still has other talents still, eh? Wonderful stuff.

Sunday, 19 December 2010

Between Love & Hate

As of lately, I am a very confused young lady. Fear not, I'm not going through some quarterly-life crisis, but I have become sort of musical schizophrenic. You see, there's several songs that I've recently heard, kind of hated, but then felt the strange compulsion to download them and listen to them lots anyway. So actually, make that a musical masochist. I blame this sudden bout of crazy on my recent discovery of this little gem of a website. Since it is far too good to be true, I have been frantically  downloading all the songs I may ever want to listen to in my life, before it is inevitably shut down. If you haven't already, get on it - it will improve your life, or at the very least your iTunes. Anyhoo, here are the songs that make me feel unclean after listening to, and, in a perverse kind of way, enjoying them. 

Sleigh Bells - Tell 'Em

My first thoughts were my god, this is fucking awful. The obnoxious opening sounds like a terrible cross between a 90's video game and the kind of 'Hair Metal' my dad likes. And yet I cannot turn it off.

Everything Everything - Photoshop Handsome

Hmm. It's definitely infectious - but is it in a good way like laughter, or bad in the same way Swine flu was? It's a toughie. Part of me thinks it's maybe actually quite good, but then the other part thinks it sounds like it could be by The Automatic? I just don't know any more.


I do love a bit of M.I.A. If the last 5 years of my life were to have a soundtrack, I would reckon that her first two albums would feature heavily. However, her latest offering... not a fan. This song however I strangely quite like, even though it's a wee bit terrible. The lyrics are littered with technology references ('You're tweeting me like tweety bird on your iPhone') that make me die a little bit inside. And please observe the video - she's just chilling out with some swans and glittery tigers, accompanied by some truly hideous MySpace-y graphics. How about that.

However! To my immense relief, there is at least one song I was instantly smitten with. Love at first hearing, you could say. I love everything about it - the jangly little Superbad-esque tune, the lyrics, his outfit (chinos and Hawaiian shirt? Oh yes.) I'm certain about this one, and I'm ready to commit to full-on adoration a song. Thank god for this beauty....

Thursday, 2 December 2010

Never Let Me Go.

I love me a good book recommendation, so when my darling sis waxed lyrical about Kazuo Ishiguro's 'Never Let Me Go', I decided to invest my sweet time in it. She warned me in advance two things - firstly that it was a slow-burner, and that it would make me cry like a little girl. And oh my days, was she right....

The book tells the tale about three youngsters - Kathy, Ruth and Tommy - who have a seemingly idyllic life attending an English boarding school named Hailsham. However, it soon becomes clear that these are no ordinary kids - they are, in fact, clones bred purely to donate their vital organs in later life. Hailsham students don't study or learn social graces, as they will never grow to need them, instead they are kept at peak health in order to maximise their use once they begin to 'donate'. Once a student has donated four of their vital organs, they 'complete'... and I'm sure you can imagine what this is a euphemism for. Despite having thoughts, feelings and ambitions, they are constantly reminded of their fate and they unquestioningly accept it.... until they inevitably find themselves in a rather complicated love triangle. 

The book is written in a deliberately flat and simplistic tone, and the first part reads like an almost Enid Blyton-esque account of school life. The way the narrator, Kathy, so passively accepts her horrific fate somehow makes it all the more devastating. For the last forty or so pages, I had a steady supply of tears trickling down my cheeks, and I am pretty heartless - the only books thus far that have managed to get any crying out of me are Harry Potter books! So you can imagine my astonishment when, upon finishing the book, I found that my cheeks, hair and pillow were soaked. If it managed to prise some emotion out of me, that's got to say something about the quality of this wonderful story. 

So if you are feeling particularly brave, indulgent or in the mood to contemplate your own mortality, I highly recommend you give this book a whirl. Just make sure you are not in public when you near the end.

You Know You're Gold

Just gonna throw it out there, I absoloutely adore this song. Victoria Legrand has the loveliest voice known to mankind, surely? Despite the summery connotations it holds (Beach house, as in where I'd ideally spend all of my summers, Zebra, a somewhat tropical animal...) I reckon it's got a distinctly wintery feel to it. The perfect soundtrack for marching through snow, in fact. 

Wednesday, 1 December 2010

So Swoon, Baby, Starry Nights!

As the worst-kept Christmas present ever, I was blessed with the glorious gift of going to see Interpol. Not only that, but in my sister's adopted hometown of Edinburgh, which looks exactly like Hogwarts, but real. I became an ardent fan of Interpol back when I were a wee lass of 14, but have only been able see them at Leeds festival a few years ago. So I was overjoyed when the opportunity to see them properly arose. Supporting them were the rather lovely Surfer Blood, but sadly our thirst for a stiff drink overwhelmed our desire to watch them. But I will say, from the faint echoes drifting into the bar area, they sounded pretty wonderful. 

Drinks in hand, we subtly elbowed our way through the crowd to a satisfactory spot, where there were not too many overwhelmingly tall people and/or dickheads. All of a sudden, there was blue lights and dry ice, and out strutted five of the suavest men you ever shall see. They played a very lovely, very long set and maintained their mystery throughout - staying silhouetted against the lights, and only speaking to the crowd for the occasional 'Thank you, that's so nice!' in response to the crowd's rapturous applause. All in all, a night much enjoyed!

As is the case when you've just seen a truly wonderful band, I honestly can't stop listening to them now. So I may as well be productive and compile a top 5 songs, yes? Yes. 

5. Not Even Jail

4. The Heinrich Maneuver

3. Untitled

2. Rest My Chemistry

1. Obstacle 1

Honorable mentions: Public Pervert, C'mere, Pioneer To The Falls, Say Hello To The Angels, Evil, Stella Was A Diver and She Was Always Down.