Friday, 29 October 2010

Fashion Fix #29 London Street Style

Morning guys, I moved back to London the other week, and I'm still not sure whether I love or loathe it. But one thing is for sure people here are damn hot, which I sort of forgot being surrounded by farmers in Bristol. So I thought it might be a good idea to post a London specific Fashion Fix. So here is the London specific Fashion Fix. Photos are from Vice and The Face Hunter. Boom.

Laters, Linda

Wednesday, 27 October 2010

Nottingham + Yeasayer

Morning guys, so I went to Nottingham and saw Yeasayer and became even more obsessed with them. But you can read all about it here.

Also went to Sherwood Forest and saw the major oak. Boom. Here are some great/blurry pictures I took. Enjoy.

Wednesday, 20 October 2010

Former Ghosts - New Love

Hi guys, here's a review I did for This Is Fake DIY about Former Ghosts's album ' New Love'.

Former Ghosts, who are comprised of main-man Freddy Ruppert and guests Nika Roza Danilova of Zola Jesus fame as well as Xiu Xiu's Jamie Stewart and newcomer to the troupe Yasmine Kittles of the L.A. act Tearist, unleash this year's most promising dark-electro-noise LP called 'New Love'. And a new love it is indeed.

Kicking off with four-to-the-floor electro-heartbreak tune 'And When You Kiss Me', Former Ghosts sound like a delicious mixture of slowed down Metronomy, Kate Bush without the melodrama and Interpol without all the stadium-friendly whinging. For this album, the band set a tone that is equally melancholic yet uplifting, simultaneously sombre yet romatic. Main-man Freddy Rupert entices with his menacingly sonourous voice taking you on a tour around the darkets edges of his heart. 'New Love' is an album so full of emotion it can only be contained by minimalistically instrumented and beautifully stripped down electronic arrangements.

On stand-out tune 'I Am Not What You Want', Former Ghosts sound uncannily like Joy Division with a modern twist, like Ian Curtis desperately clinging on to post-industrial dance influence. Rupert's emotive vocals dance slowly with Jamie Stewart's girlishly warm voice on this tune making the two of them the Serge Gainsbourg and Brigitte Bardot of the Noughties. It's a duet of love, loss and longing. It's what the best songs are written about.

While largely cold and dark, the album has a few flickers of hope and light. There are extremely haunting vocals and bleakly obscure lyrics on the one hand, but there are also plenty of pulsating, forward-moving dancey tracks that create a perfect balance between what the heart and what the body desire. More conventional electronic fares like the brittle electronic workouts on 'New Orleans' pack a massive emotional punch. 'Chin Up' is also a real gem endowed with a scorching, distortion-flecked lead vocal from Zola Jesus and a riotous electronic production that thumps and tears at its own fibres.

With tracks such as the eponymous 'New Love' or first single 'New Orleans' Former Ghosts are riding high on the coldwave, errr, wave, but despite probably being played in numourous depressed teenage bedrooms, they defnitely wouldn't be inaproppriate on dancefloors either. If Former Ghosts last year's debut 'Fleurs' suggested a distinct excitability along with a real dark mania, then 'New Love' is the naural follow-up with its fleeting feelings and bleak beats. They sure can write a chorus that will be stuck in your head for days like on lead single 'New Orleans', but on the flipside of that they also write songs that make you wanna throw yourself off the nearest bridge. Those songs infiltrate your mind with their oblique mist of misery and mood. They imprison you.

Last song on the record 'Winter's Year' perfectly encapsulates that bittersweet feeling the entire LP is all about. It's a tense love-hate relationship coming to life through chilly ballads and new romantic crooning. We all fear winter for its short cold days, but when we sit inside in the warm, we all appreciate its icey beauty. 'New Love' is the perfect album for that time of year.

Tuesday, 19 October 2010

Update & Crush of the week & Fashion Fix

Guys! I know, I know I haven't been around for absolute ages and I apologise dearly for it. Shit was happening, but now I am back. Fo realz. I have neglected fashion fix posts and I have neglected crush of the week updates, so today I present to you a delightful double whammy of both. Wahey.

As I was looking at my own Blogspot statistics today, which I tend to do at least 5 million times a day, it occurred to me that people need to be continuously entertained. One poor soul actually googled "Linda's Fashion Fix". Whoever you are, I love you with all my heart! And I appreciate that you missed me. And I really hope you mean me!

So let's get this show on the road then.

Fashion Fix is all about minimalism today. I'm sick of all this over-the-top dressing up and wearing massive bows in your hair and glitter make up (who?) and hareem pants and fake fur. Nude colours or simple black and white combos always look super ace. Check it. Hugo does it, Missioni does it, Marni does it, who are we not to do it?

And finally my crush of the week is the crazers amazers band Salem, because their tunes, their videos, their artwork, their looks and their attitude are all brilliant. Boom.

Wednesday, 13 October 2010

Mumford and Sons Live Review

So guys I reviewed Mumford and Sons for This Is Fake DIY. Read what I had to say here.

Mumford And Sons’ current tour brings together the cream of the so called neo-folk scene, roping in the subdued beauty of Matthew And The Atlas, the joyous troubadour folk of Johnny Flynn and, of course, the poppy banjo wielding anthem-fest of Mumford And Sons.

Opening, Matthew And The Atlas play to a good amount of punters early on in the night showcasing their tight and tuneful blend of Americana and romantic folk. Frontman Matthew Hegarty might be an unassuming fella at first glance but once he opens his mouth his exquisite voice makes jaws drop immediately. The songs are perfectly arranged, the lyrics beautifully written and if there is any justice in the world, his band more than deserve to be headlining this very same venue next year.

Johnny Flynn is on next and performs a stunning set with songs mainly from his first album ‘A Larum’. On a slightly crowded stage due to a massive band backing of five musicians, Johnny still holds the attention of the entire audience. His crystal clear voice and masterful guitar skills cut through the auditorium like a campfire on a crisp night. Humble in attitude, but not in sound, Johnny performs single ‘Kentucky Pill’ whilst encouraging a dance-off in the crowd. Even though he gets cheered on like a bona-fide rock-star, he really is the opposite. A shy boy at heart, who comes to life on stage, Johnny Flynn embodies everything that’s good about music: talent, creativity and passion.

Mumford And Sons come onto the stage to euphorically deafening cheers from the ecstatic crowd. Taking their ethic from anti-folk’s outspoken style and fleshing it out for broader commercial appeal, frontman Marcus and his Sons know how to write a hit song. Initially known as backing band for Laura Marling, the band finally stepped out of the shadows with their debut ‘Sigh No More’. And step out they did indeed, as proven by tonight’s deliriously adoring crowd.

Opener ‘Sigh No More’ is a mixture of an angsty ballad and a Pentecostal-style hymn that could well be on Bon Iver’s record. Starting off as a quiet and fragile acoustic paean to love it soon turns into a banjo-beast all romping and stomping with claps, multi-harmonious chanting and compelling strummed chords. Continuing to walk the thin line between shallow melodrama and genuine emotion, Marcus Mumford and his Sons launch into the first highlight of the night. ‘Little Lion Man’ shines brightly on the afore-mentioned debut and it moves numerous punters in the audience to shed a lil’ tear. Basically a well-structured folk-pop ballad, this song seems to combine the commercial appeal of mainstream popsters like Damien Rice with a more demure Laura Marling like edge. The Kings Of Leon of nouveau-folk? Quite possibly.

Chubby-cheeked Marcus Mumford appears to have become some sort of folk-rock God for the new generation of gig goers, and with a presence half-cocky / half-charming and an abundance of entertaining banter about his mum with crowd, he fully lives up to that status. At their best, Mumford And Sons are mightily anthemic and perfectly harmonious, at their worst however, they remind of a has-been barn-dance band that you book for your daughter’s 12th birthday. Muttering about broken hearts repetitively, somehow this whole affair seems more like an act than real art.

Tuesday, 12 October 2010

How to raise a gentleman.

Hi blog-lovers, we all know that the world is starved of nice guys. So what can we do to change that? All get pregnant and raise nice boys? Yes, that’s the plan.

So I have compiled this ‘guide’ on how to raise a gentleman. Learn.

Tell him he’s great, but nothing special. Not in a mean way, just in a realistic way, so that he doesn’t start to believe he’s a gift to all womankind.

Teach him that Abercrombie and Fitch is evil.

Teach him that poetry is good.

Keep your guitar locked away and only let him join bands as drummer or tambourine player.

Give him your old LP’s and a record player.

Teach him that dancing, even silly dancing, is nothing embarrassing. Especially not dancing to Jason DeRulo.

Don’t send him to a public school, but try not to send him to a ghetto school either.

Teach him that the way to a woman’s heart is not bringing flowers on the first date, but bringing a cupcake or a book for her to read and discuss with him afterwards.

Go hiking with him and talk about girls. And emotions. Shock. Horror.

Thursday, 7 October 2010

Die Antwoord - Evil Boy

Morning guys. Let's start this wonderful day with some new stuff from the wonderful Die Antwoord. I mean I thought 'Beat Boy' was quite out there, but this shit is on a whole new level of obscure. Like a very wise friend of mine said: It's fascinating how this band has gone from comedy rap trio that nobody really took seriously to some sort of avant-garde ground-breaking pop-culture mocking phenomenon. All hail Die Antwoord.

Monday, 4 October 2010

Zola Jesus - Sea Talk Download

Zola Jesus is one of the most imaginative and inspiring singers that has exploded onto the scene recently. Moody, contemplative, strong, emotional and ethereal, she is all that I want from my female singers. Fresh from her first UK and European shows will release a double A-sided single, Poor Animal / I Can't Stand, through Souterrain Transmissions on November 1st. In order to get in the mood for this, check out her behind the scenes footage from the video shoot for Sea Talk.

And the track itself can be downloaded here.

Stidulum II is an unbelievably great album and you need to get onto this shit asap.