Monday, May 07, 2007

Weekender : making the most of it

FREE MUSIC: Some people have it all. Charlotte Gainsbourg is Serge's daughter with Jane Birkin and got the best of their respective genes, being a darn fine figure of a woman who looks coolest enjoying an arty Gauloise. From last year's 5:55 album, The Songs That We Sing showcases her interpretation skills, delicate if oddly Anglicised voice (oddly reminiscent of Sarah Nixey), David Campbell's way with a Sergeish string arrangement and Nicolas Godin and Jean-Benoit Dunckel writing better than most of what they've done for Air recently.

HEY YOU GET OFFA MYSPACE: Maybe there's a secret pop factory in Sweden that churns out bands who take lo-fi C86 twee as a starting point for modernist adventuring. Stockholm's latest buzz band are five teenage girls called Those Dancing Days, who bring to the fray the very essence of organ led '1997' (see posts passim) filtered through Northern Soul, Sarah Records and Blondie. They're all downloadable too - try Hitten, essentially Camera Obscura demoing Pull Shapes, or the eponymous track, which is reminiscent of Sophie Ellis-Bextor teaming up with the Duloks and the Stranglers' Dave Greenfield.

VISUAL REPRESENTATION: Sweeping The Nation 101: anything labelled as 'high camp', 'kitsch' or 'so bad it's good' needs taking outside and shooting. We therefore derive most of our Eurovision enjoyment from lurking on message boards and watching people discuss which minor soap actresses the singers look like. And from old clips, obviously. The coolest entry ever? That'll be 1965's Poupée de Cire, Poupée de Son, written by Gainsbourg, sung by France Gall, covered live by Arcade Fire and Belle & Sebastian. This was for Luxembourg, whose 1979 entry is unremarkable but we're including for the magnificent intro clip. See, this is the problem on setting out to document Eurovision past - a lot of it is so unmemorable and set to type that it's no wonder everyone reaches immediately for ridiculousness like a 1980 tribute to penguins by, again, Luxembourg, Germany working the post-Boney M angle in 1979, Sweden's golden booted 1984 winners, Switzerland's 1976 clown, and last year's presumptious Lithuanians. Unfortunately Norwegians voted Rednex-via-Goldie Lookin' Chain Dusty Cowshit out at the national level this year, which is a shame if only because we will never know how Wogan would have approached them.

VIRAL MARKETING: See, this is the sort of cross-media branding Popworld Pulp couldn't start to understand - Mark Ellen previews the new edition of Word by flicking through it in front of a digicam. Simple, but effective, even if it does seem to have been redesigned insomuch as the pictures now take up three quarters of the magazine.

FALLING OFF A BLOG: Crying All The Way To The Chip Shop is an excellent title, as well as clearly stating that this is not a blogger who spends weekends at the Bowery. Usually long involved explanations and then something old in mp3 form at the end, currently, magnificently, hope-that-comes-up-on-Hype Machine-worthy, George Formby.

EVERYBODY GET RANDOM: A few weeks ago we covered the REM-only blog, and now band specific writings are the average quality strappy top that might have been designed by Kate Moss of the internet. More Words About Music And Songs is now making its way through the Talking Heads back catalogue.

IN OTHER NEWS: Buy Isaac Brock's shit! (insert We Were Dead Before The Ship Even Sank joke here) This is part of Celebrity Skin And Body Fluids, a site set up by "an anonymous collective of former Hollywood personal assistants" - completely beyond suspicion, then - that tries to flog bits of the stars to you, whether Conor Oberst's bacteria, Rob Halford's skin cells or Satomi from Deerhoof's saliva (never off the radar of Hollywood personal assistants, her). We're not sure whether they come with certificates of authenticity, but we doubt it.

2 comments:

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