Monday, 31 October 2011
Scran in all forms has been high on the menu of late. And in all its forms. I've actually made some proper meals. Just like a real person. That's right. It ain't just a bandage to patch up the bits of you which have fallen off the previous evening. There's been some big business going down in the kitchens of E8 and beyond. Believe...
Overpriced bog roll
Useless little bastard
Israeli-affiliated Scotch eggs - never again
Post-midnight street urchin yummles
A delicious, hot bird
'The Child', aka 'The Barbarian' cooks - and this is what it looks like
Thursday, 27 October 2011
Wednesday, 26 October 2011
Warehouse parties in the east end of London town are ten a penny. Inboxes, flyers and posters constantly pop up promising today's dancers grimy nights in 'secret warehouse spaces' all propelled by a Funktion One sound system. But many of these forarys fail to deliver on the pre-match hype in terms of space and sonics. As a result, it's become easy to ignore the deluge of bluster and promotional blurb.
The Standard Place 1st birthday bash was a different matter. The venue, in the dingier end of Hackney Downs, was an actual warehouse where you could imagine real men in white coats slaughtering animals during daylight hours. And the Internet anticipation was something else. The promoters had a steady drip of line up revelations in the week leading up to the do, only unveiling the full girth of their aural menu on the actual day of lift off. Benji B, Oneman, Artwork, Jackmaster and Joy Orbison on the same bill is summat not to be sniffed at. So when night descended, we were totally crackling and at the front of a very lubricated pack of ravers wandering around Hackney Downs in search of the party.
Once we found the bash and clambered inside it, the vibe itself was next level. Being keen beans, we were pretty much the first punters up in the place to find Oneman laying down some serious UKG bizness in a dimly lit and metallic space. And as it filled the vibe went from abbatoir to pure bassy chaos. We were all over it, shaking our bits down at the front like a right bunch of fan boys to a fine blend of funky, house, hip hop and garage. Benji B dropped Drake's Headlines which sent our crew into serious spasms, including one team member taking it in turns to projectilve vomit and sleep in the smoking area. Oneman returned and kept the pressure tight But the cheap bar got the better of us and meant we were forced to leave just as Artwork was preparing his wonk for the dance. We walked home, stayed up until dawn and spent much of the next day unconcious in bed. Big night. Big vibes. Standard Place is anything but...
Tuesday, 25 October 2011
Mcdonald's describe their latest addition to the hangover crew's morning menu as a 'Delicious sausage, bacon, egg, potato rosti and cheese with ketchup or brown sauce'. They weren't wrong about it being delicious. And, according to the Mcdonald's website, it (disappointingly) doesn't contain any sulphur dioxide. Although it could be accused of resembling the inside of a dead, prehistoric reptile which has put some serious hours in slaving away over a deep fat fryer.
If you were to put the majority of the fresh new players in contemporary electronic squelches together in a line up, you’d be hard pressed to distinguish one from the other. Baseball caps, hoods, buttoned up shirt, skinny pantaloons, Vans, attitude - stand to attention.
So props to Glaswegian Hudson Mohawke for doing his bit for the less immaculately turned out - he’s a big fella with lumps and bumps a plenty but somewhere within that frame is an ever burgeoning electronic hero on the brink of exploding. His biggest headline gig to date in the smoke showed just why the great and good of US r’n’b are getting their expensive knickers in a twist over his sonics - and why everyone else should be soggy with anticipation for his new album - the man has skillzzzzz.
After dining extravagantly at the nearby Wetherspoons (the Masque Haunt - the verdict? Great. What else?), and being greeted by an erstwhile blogger at the door looking for a spare ticket (Key ‘modest’ quote; ‘It’s pretty successful’) we entered XOYO’s interiors. And what did we find? Surprisingly, a ginger haired dude ripping up some serious funk on keys and a talk box to about 3 punters, one with a terrible tache doing his best to throw some serious dad-shaped moves. But bibbles aside, Redinho was the name of the man reeling around the stage, and one of the much feted new breed doing his business for the Numbers staple. Numbers has been one of the key platforms to elevate the likes of Hudmo and fellow Scots Rustie and Jackmaster to the big league. And although the talk box may be Redinho’s one trick, it’s definitely one worth keeping your ears peeled for.
Canadian producer and DJ Jacques Greene was up next with a sound closer to the r’n’b proffered by Hudmo - his latest mix for Allez Allez is a good indication of where this 20 year’s old musical head is at - somewhere between the syrupy chart hop of Drake and the heads down tech of Martyn. Although his mixing skills were, in some ways, refreshingly awry, his tune selection was bang on the money and had the now full room moving with him.
Jacques Greene Allez Allez Mix by DummyMag
So to the finale and Hudmo’s many layered, purple take on all things thunderous and electronic - He's definitely not one for much for visual pea cocking. With the exception of a light show and big screen featuring a raging Incredible Hulk, he spent the gig swaying behind his control panels but his music packs a powerful and seering punch.
Beginning with a swirling take on Bjork’s Crystalline, Hudmo spent the next hour or so conjuring up a bass heavy storm from his numerous knobs and buttons. Imagine a white Timbaland for a new generation which, in both physical shape and sound, the Scot bares more than a little resemblance to. Satin Panthers, the name of his latest EP, is a neat encapsulation of the electronica he’s pushing, it's heavy enough to feel it in your guts but with enough delicacy and decency to rely on more than just brute force. He led us by the hand through a set of mostly new materials before coming to a juddering climax with his first release, the bootleg of Tweet’s Oops. Rustie’s debut record may have just dropped to much acclaim but Hudmo is a few steps ahead. This maverick playa’s got plenty of play left him in. Play on…
Monday, 24 October 2011
'Bang Face Never Dies' - The slogans daubing the walls, t-shirts and signs of the Bang Face Hard Crew are one of the many mind altering joys to revel in when getting down to ravey business at this monstrous celebration of underground electronic dance. ‘You only live twice’, the title of a James Bond film, would be an apt tag line for a Bang Face party. So it was vaguely fitting that the 8th birthday bash for the home to all things ‘neo’, ’rave’ and ‘Armageddon’ coincided with the birthday of James Bond actor and perennial gentlemen rogue, Roger Moore.
Many of the monikers for flicks featuring this secret agent lothario wouldn’t look out of place on the backs of the Hard Crew - ‘Live and Let Die’, ‘A view to a kill’ - I’d pay serious dosh to see this vibe flipped and reversed with Moore starring in a film using a Bang Face slogan - perhaps ‘The only thing I’m fucking tonight are my prospects’.
Anyhoo, Bang Face has come a longgggg way since it’s inception eight years ago in a seedy toilet of a venue in Shoreditch. Although in this case, getting older, does not equate to growing up - leave your pipes and slippers at the door unless they‘re over sized and bright green. Now based around a massive three day weekend blow out at a holiday park in the spring, the 8th birthday business was the night’s return to what many of the BF faithful deem to be its spiritual home at the Electrowerkz in Islington.
The online anticipation for the all night Friday evening showdown was massive- the neon corners of the Internet where the hard crew interact was bowing over with froth - and with good reason. The weekenders have proved to be life affirming affairs - so condensing the three days of madness into one evening was an enticing prospect to hardened dance floor warrior - when we arrived, we were confronted with queues round the block and the rousing clarion call of bass…
The Electrowerkz proved to be a suitable den of inequity for shady rave behaviour - spread over a myriad number of caves, we spent the evening lumbering from room to broom cupboard constantly hit by inflatables, slogans, headgear, balloons and darkness. In the seediest corner of the club, where break core proved to be the soundtrack of choice, cages adorned the wall - one could pretend to be an animal in a zoo - which was a fitting look for the collective state of mind as the night wore on.
Although we clocked numerous players (Dave Skywalker, The Teknoist, Normski, Tango & Ratty to name a few) it was down to Sheffield’s Squires of Gothos to smash the last two hours in the main room - which proved to be sheer carnage. With tops off, top hats on and a stage invasion, the duo battered the stamina crew with high-vis bass music until the place fell in on itself around dawn time. As we left in search of an after party, Normski was skulking outside in the shadows in full Bond villain make up and street cleaners did their best to wipe the rave from the street. Yet again Bang Face failed to disappoint - we came away with more new chums and wrinkles than we had before - it’s an irresistible hard dance extravaganza which can’t help but bring a grin to the chops… Roll on the Christmas party…
Ps. They finished on this...
Double You - Please Don't Go (Squire Of Gothos Bootleg Bashdown) by OFF ME NUT RECORDS
Trapped in a rave cave of emotion
Monday, 10 October 2011
Despite all this recent galavanting, there's been a truck load of sizzly new electronic business running around. Check out the below yarns spun on the new Four Tet Fabric mix and Modeselektor album Monkey Town below...
Four Tet Fabric Live Hyponik review
Modeselektor Monkey Town Hyponik review
Berlin by the latter is undergoing heavy rotation round our way... Check it...
Four Tet Fabric Live Hyponik review
Modeselektor Monkey Town Hyponik review
Berlin by the latter is undergoing heavy rotation round our way... Check it...
30 years old. Ouch. Despite acting as an indicator of ever-advancing death, it's a nice looking number. It's much less jagged and ungainly than 29. But the aesthetics should supposedly reflect your state of mind. Gone is the time for undecision. It's time to know who you are and where it is you're at. I entered my 30th year the other week and can confirm nothing has changed. I still don't know what time it is. Thankfully there were two days of hard shindiggery and sloppy shenaniganry to wade through to commemorate the date. I didn't have time to think about anything too hard. Like what the fuck it is I'm doing.
Instead our club crew Kiss the Fist repped hard and fast down in the bowels of the Baby Bathhouse in Stoke Newington. Our evening culminated in a 'stirring' rendition of 'Come on Eileen', shots of jager and me sen having an undignified piss down an alley.
Saturday was one full of surprises. From waking up on a mattress at a mate's gaff, to eating a fry up with liver to an actual real life surprise do in the evening. I was tricked. The gathering featured rubber gloves, Manchester eggs (like scotched ones except with pickled eggs and crisps rather than your bog standard hen's egg and bread crumbs), a Gregg's and southern fried chicken platter - but the crowning glory was taken by the dessert - a Frank Sidebottom cake.
Never have I felt more touched. Big up to everyone who repped. And big up the culinary smorgasboard crew. It was emotional...
A birthday painting gift - a collection of slightly sinister clowns
Hash pipe - all the way from the East
The arms of dolls - in a glass case - embedded in the bar of the Baby Bathhouse - standard
Set 5 Mixed grill breakfast - note liver - goes well with a pint
Frank Sidebottom cake
Frank Sidebottom cake in a cocktail
Getting done up the wrong 'un by Grace
Nando's - before
Nando's - After - bones sucked dry
It's a cheese cake ting - stay classy
Tuesday, 4 October 2011
I said hello to the first morning of being 30 in the same way many mornings of my supposed adult life have been greeted. With a desperate need for a glass of water and an explanation. But despite the memory loss, and the pain in the collective gut, we spent the next four days lording it up like princes. Proper princes.
On Friday we discovered it was Toronto's 'Beer Week' - and subsequently wandered round in the torrential rain until we found Bar Volo and it's extensive selection of micro-brewed ale. We consumed enough of their boozes to make friends with some Sheffield ex-pats, fell in love with the bar maid (again), ate a veal burger, then headed to Toddla T and Roska's show at the Mod Club. Behaviour took a turn for the lairy - we quaffed their beers, jived on the stage with the other liggers and acted like we owned the joint. Which we blatantly didn't. And woke up with the stench of guilt in the air and a business card belonging to someone from Vice magazine.
Our Saturday vibe was based around travelling from the penthouse to the pavement - via a limo natch. Turns out shitloads of the 'taxis' in Toronto are posh as fuck - so we made the five minute journey from the opulent hotel to the tidgy hostel in an extravagant a style as possible. Then entered a room as big as a thimble - stylez. But our low key dwellings inspired the trip to even more ludicrous heights...
We took a boat to the islands on Lake Ontario and wandered round a creepy, deserted children's fairground before heading back to dine in a greasy style at Hooter's. Canada's Wonderland was our destination the day after - here the vibe was all about scaring oneself witless on the ginormous roller coasters - I've never wailed so much. The Behemoth took the prize for its stomach churning drop but my eyes were glued shut for the duration. Like a little girl. Standard.
Our trip to Niagara the day after was dismantled by our own hand - we got too fucked up in the nearby Irish bar to make the hostel bus we'd booked - but being resourceful chaps, we set off anyway. And, after a train ride, a bus journey and a lengthy walk we found one of the wonders of the world. Then gave it five minutes of ogling before gipping off in search of the nearby Casino to lose the rest of our dollar dollar bills y'all.
That was that - The flight back was much like our jaunt out there - Fuelled by vodka, juice and cinematic treats with a side helping of Erasure before going into work on no sleep and answering shitloads of emails. Oooof. Props to Toronto for having us. And all the folk we drank, danced and drunkenly shouted at. You were all too kind...
Second breakfast as a 30 year old
Halloween cards - these fuckers are berserk
'beater in an Irish bag - keeping it classy
Canada knows what time it is - NEVER FAKE IT
Delicious micro-brewery business
It's a veal burger ting
Roska doing his ting at the Mod Club
Ligging it up proper stylez with T-dilly
The healing power of Quince
Our first hotel
Our second 'hotel'
Perving in the park
CORN DOG - it's a fucking CORN DOG
They take Halloween seriously
Hooters - the 'Bleu Burger' meal - pot of fat on the side
Boneless wings residue - no idea how they get them boneless
A moment of na... zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz
Taking the boat to Hooters
Canada's Wonderland - security just out of shot
The Psyclone in action
We went on this
And the Vortex
Stomach wobbling burritto - settle the nerves with summat trumpy
Whac a Mole - We got beaten by a child
Bricking it at the wheel
Massive fuck off prizes
We went on this
And this - The Behemoth
Then finished on this...
Throw the Ring - we bought 60 rings - won dick all
The elusive rings - fuck your rings
Waking up to realise we'd missed our coach to Niagara due to being too fucked on beers and jager
What we could have done
2 dogs in the claw are worth 4 in the bush
Our mission - bus, train and lengthy mooch
Found the fucker
Niagara Falls - the town - like Blackpool but with more meat
Niagara knows what time it is
Close up of the zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz
To the Casino to try and regain all the dosh we spunked in Hooters
Stern words in the gents
Sex and the City fruity
First pay out didn't cut it
In the zone
Worried about leaving the hobs on
Cash collection point
400 bucks later...
The train back to the hostel - utterly fuck off massive
The bottom of our road
They do tings differently here
The final munch in Canadia - philly steak and beers
Proof we were here
Our pervy limo driver to the airport - wife in Canada - 5 young girlfriends in Cuba - EEK
Fuck you later Toronto
Airport bar - last of the denk
Final jager on Canadian soil - emotional moment in the bar
Even more emotional moment on paying
Our vessel back
Work desk - 9.25am on Wednesday - no sleep since Monday - thanks a lot