Saturday, March 31, 2007

The Shins at The Forum

The Shins - Kentish Town Forum

I don't think I've been to a gig at The Forum since Garbage played their first UK show there back in 1995 (I think)... sheesh! Anyway, aside from the cloakroom debacle it's a decent venue, nice wide stage and kinda tiered standing area. Even though I arrived relatively late I still managed to secure a great position down the front at the right hand side of the stage. The Shins opened their set with the first four tracks from current album Wincing The Night Away - a pretty invincible start, especially with Anita from Viva Voce lending harmonies to the outstanding single Phantom Limb. It set a precedent which was hard to maintain, largely because I only know songs from the new album, but the band did a valiant job and the crowd were well up for it. I couldn't really tell you what other tracks they played, but it sounded good and the band seemed to be enjoying themselves - whether it really was better than the previous night's show (as they said) who knows? But if would have had to be exceptional to beat this display. Another excellent performance - March has been a very good month for live music.

Viva Voce - Kentish Town Forum

As an added bonus, I also got to see Viva Voce beforehand. Another band hailing from Portland (the US equivalent of Brighton for its vibrant music scene?) I heard their early Wrecking Ball single on the radio the other week and made a mental note to investigate more of their music, so was delighted to find out they'd be supporting The Shins - even better, I managed to pick up a double CD of their The Heat Can Melt Your Brain and Lovers, Lead The Way! albums for a bargain £4 on my way to the show! A husband and wife duo of Kevin & Anita Robinson, they sounded less like My Bloody Valentine (as I'd been expecting) and more like Joy Zipper or The Breeders - all good stuff though. Wrecking Ball sounded great, as did Lesson No. 1 and it was Kevin's birthday too so there was a very loving vibe around the venue.

Friday, March 30, 2007

FrightFest 2007 - The Russians Are Coming!

Timur Bekmambetov's Day Watch

I had a quick pint with Paul McEvoy yesterday evening and managed to get the first news on this year's FrightFest event. Even at this early stage around 8 or 9 films have been confirmed but the only title that Paul would admit to being definite was Day Watch, Timur Bekmambetov's sequel to Night Watch which screened at the festival in 2005. A few teaser images have been posted onto the FrightFest website, with another Russian fantasy epic The Sword Bearer looking a likely candidate.

Click here to see the Day Watch trailer.

Click here to visit The Sword Bearer website.

FrightFest 2007 will take place at London's Odeon West End from 23-27 August.

Thursday, March 29, 2007

More Sunshine & Even More Severance

Cillian Murphy in Danny Boyle's Sunshine

Further to my own review of Sunshine, I found a couple of other articles on the film which I feel discuss the ideas and themes of the film so much better than I was able to do. The first is an unpublished piece written for The Guardian by Gia who has been overseeing the Sunshine website for the past 18 months. The second is a review from The Observer last Sunday written by respected critic and broadcaster Mark Kermode. Click on the links below to read:

I Found Him In The Sunshine by Gia Milinovich

2007: A Scorching New Space Odyssey by Mark Kermode

Sunshine opens in cinemas across the UK on 5th April.

Severance US Theatrical poster

More news on Severance which of course I've mentioned on this blog countless times already - the film is due to open in the US on May 18th and the brand spanking new trailer is now up on YouTube for all to see:

Right, I think I need to find some new films to obsess over now!

Movie Haiku - The Hills Have Eyes II

Dir: Martin Weisz

Cast: Michael McMillian, Jessica Stroup, Daniella Alonso, Jacob Vargas

Rookie army team
bad at following orders
good at gory deaths

soulmining rating: ***

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Movie Haiku - 300

Dir: Zack Snyder

Cast: Gerard Butler, Lena Headey, David Wenham, Dominic West

Spartans in black trunks
shout and spray blood with their spears
few against many

soulmining rating: ***

Monday, March 26, 2007

Sunshine Review

Cliff Curtis in Danny Boyle's Sunshine

"Successfully reignites the sci-fi genre for a new generation..."

"The most important influence at work here is Alien and its nerve-shattering tension..."

"I was just sitting there open-mouthed in astonishment..."

You can read my full review at Eat My Brains website here.

Sunday, March 25, 2007

Kate Nash at Red Roaster

Kate Nash - Red Roaster, Brighton

Another young female singer/songwriter with a swelling MySpace fanbase and already garnering praise from the likes of The Guardian, is Kate Nash going to be the next big thing? On her (sold out) first headlining tour and playing at the tiny Red Roaster cafe at the bottom of St James's Street, mere minutes away from my flat, I felt it was my duty to investigate. The first thing I noticed about Kate is that she's taller and more confident than I'd expected. Taking a technical glitch in her stride she quickly abandoned her set list and improvised at her keyboard with a solo take on Little Red to open her show. With occasional backing on guitar and drums, she remained at her keyboard for the first few songs, before picking up her own guitar for a different version of her debut single Caroline's A Victim. Coming across like a slightly less-gobby version of Lily Allen, her songs are immediate, honest and extremely witty with titles like Shit Song and Dickhead suggesting her album will be a corker. Future single Foundations was uptempo and fun, but she saved the best to last with a rousing rendition of Merry Happy. Deliciously kooky, Kate Nash is definitely going to be one to watch this year.

Saturday, March 24, 2007

Movie Haiku - I Want Candy

Dir: Stephen Surjik

Cast: Tom Riley, Tom Burke, Carmen Electra, Mackenzie Crook

Dim-witted students
need pornstar to act in film
ping-pong jokes so old

soulmining rating: **

Thursday, March 22, 2007

Movie Haiku - Factory Girl

Dir: George Hickenlooper

Cast: Sienna Miller, Guy Pearce, Hayden Christensen, Jimmy Fallon

Life of Warhol's muse
they all use her then move on
takes some drugs and dies

soulmining rating: ***

Movie Haiku - Premonition

Dir: Mennan Yapo

Cast: Sandra Bullock, Julian McMahon, Nia Long, Peter Stormare

Foresees husband's death
but who cares as he's cheating
load of old Bullocks

soulmining rating: *

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

The Sounds at the Pressure Point

The Sounds - Pressure Point, Brighton

My favourite new band of 2007 thus far is without a doubt The Sounds, a Swedish five-piece who make glorious electro-pop (imagine if Blondie grew up listening to the songs of Daft Punk, so the publicity goes...) and have this week re-released their fabulous Dying To Say This To You album chock full of bonus material. Yesterday also saw the start of their first headlining UK tour beginning with a date here at the Pressure Point in Brighton. Before the gig the band turned up at Resident Records for an instore session - but in the end they just did a signing as the shop was (allegedly) too small for them to set up in!

Maja - Song With A Mission

The show itself was a blast! Beginning with one of my favourites, Painted By Numbers, the band raced through most of the tracks on their current album and a few older songs from their first Swedish release. Singer Maja was a firecracker on stage, a natural performer, throwing shapes and repeatedly coming down the front to sing to the audience - and just like Lovefoxx from CSS, she also indulged in a spot of stagediving! Poor Andy got left behind at the bar as I gradually got sucked closer and closer to the front, jumping around with the other fans. Honestly, I haven't enjoyed a gig as much as this one in ages, I was grinning like an idiot! It's hard to pick out a highlight in a set full of highlights, but Song With A Mission certainly had me shouting along during the encore. Best gig of the year so far!

Friday, March 16, 2007

The Great Friday Tea Caper

I met Kelly in Lewes last night for a few drinks after work and we got onto the topic of blogging and how we miss the random posts (and emails) we used to do in the 'good old days' before work intervened. It was time to bring it all back! And so The Great Friday Tea Caper was born...

09:48 – Arrive at work.

09:50 - Hear the sound of the kettle boiling. BP is the only other member of staff in, apart from SC who rarely makes hot beverages - as he’s the boss - so I assume that she is making the first round of drinks.

09:56 – Receive Kelly’s first update reminding me about the sequel to The Poosday Drinks Project. She's titled it The Great Friday Tea Caper. "What happens if we all drink coffee?" I enquire.

09:59 – With DF off sick it looks like there will just be six of us taking part in today’s task. Plus SB – but he rarely has a hot drink and only ever makes them after 6pm when everyone else has gone home.

10:00 – The office is open and there’s no sign of our drinks.

10:17 – Still no drinks. I was hoping to scive out of making a round of drinks today but am getting desperate. Sadly the phones are ringing off the hook, so I can’t get away.

10:23 – BP sits down and starts taking calls. Where’s our drinks?!

10:27 – I’m getting twitchy now, I need my caffeine! Damn, my phone is ringing again. Right, b*ll*cks to it, I’m logging off after this call and making the drinks.

10:31 – Put the kettle on. Realise SB isn’t actually at work after all, he’s at the dentist. BP’s mug has gone missing. Have to find a replacement.

10:37 – First round of drinks completed as follows:
  • Me – Coffee (Kenco) white, two sugars
  • SC – Tea (builders) white, one sugar
  • BP – Coffee (Nescafe) white, no sugar
  • PC – Tea (Redbush) white, no sugar
  • JC – Tea (builders) white, no sugar
  • AD – Tea (builders) white, two sugars
10:39 – Oh dear, SB arrives at work, just a fraction too late for the first round of drinks. Not that he’d have wanted one anyway, probably.

10:45 – JC thanks me for the cup of tea! Nice to know that my efforts are appreciated by some members of our office.

10:49 – AD is eating a chocolate Penguin biscuit – without providing communal biscuits for everyone. It’s a disgrace!

10:51 – I find the packet of cookies left over from yesterday and grab one of those before they’re all gone.

10:55 – AD is sneakily eating her second chocolate Penguin biscuit. I voice my displeasure. Still, no-one else wants a cookie so that means I can finish off the packet.

11:01 – Finish eating all the remaining cookies. That was a bit greedy of me really, but hey, I was hungry.

11:02 – Finish my coffee. A very good 8/10 if I do say so myself. Submit first report to Kelly.

11:26 – All quiet on the drinks front. AD tries to make amends by offering to share her packet of Mini-Cheddars with me.

11:37 – One hour since the last hot drinks and I’m ready for another… so who’s going to make the next round? It’s like the Cheltenham festival but with hot beverages! Here’s the latest betting odds:
  • BP – 3/1 FAV
  • JC – 5/1
  • PC – 11/2
  • AD – 30/1
  • SC – 100/1
  • SB – 500/1
  • Me – Non-runner
12:04 – Two hours in and only one hot drink so far. People are slacking in their responsibilities today. Or maybe they’re just too busy doing their work? I’m going to have to start dropping hints in a moment…

12:09 – “I must make some tea in a minute, we’ve only had one drink today,” mutters PC. Come on then, get that kettle on… I’m timing you!

12:12 – PC is in the kitchen making drinks!

12:15 – AD finds the box of Cadbury’s Heroes chocolates. I am entrusted with the task of Guardian Of The Heroes, to ensure that BP and AD don’t eat them all. After my earlier incident with the cookies is this a wise move?

12:20 – PC arrives with the drinks. BP has been given half Nescafe half Kenco in error.

12:33 – Stuck on the front counter so I haven’t had chance to sample my latest cup of coffee.

12:34 – Good effort from PC, nice and strong but perhaps a little lacking in the sugar department. A strong 7/10 for that one.

12:41 – I’ve only eaten two Heroes chocolates so far.

12:58 – What devilish magic is this? In an attempt to locate my original Poosday Drinks Project notes I discover that I suddenly have access to my blog. My blog has been barred at work for months… what is going on here?

13:08 – Second update submitted to Kelly.

13:43 – All quiet on the hot beverage front. I’m still getting over the shock of being able to get onto my blog again. I bet it doesn’t last…

13:57 – I think I’m going to have to start dropping some hints here. We’re distinctly lacking in the hot drinks action at the moment. Time to liven things up a bit.

14:13 – Hmmmm… this isn’t working. People keep disappearing off to lunch. My stomach is rumbling. Tesco is calling me.

14:23 – I casually mention that a drink would be lovely with my forthcoming round of toast. “If that’s supposed to be a hint then I’m ignoring it,” says AD, a notorious shirker when it comes to tea making duties.

14:26 – I try bribing AD by saying she can go to lunch before me if she makes some hot drinks first. She declines. I go to lunch.

14:35 – I return from Tesco with a loaf of bread. You know, a cup of tea would go nicely with some toast right now… but it doesn’t look like I’m going to get one unless I make it myself.

14:44 – AD gets back from lunch and asks how I’m enjoying my toast. “It’s a bit dry,” I respond, “Just needs a drink to help wash it down.”

14:45 - My attempts to make AD feel guilty are not working. JC is still stuck at the counter so that leaves BP the only other alternative at this moment in time.

14:53 – BP looks very busy. Tea making doesn’t appear to be top of her agenda right now. Sigh. This is fast becoming a disaster.

15:07 – JC is at lunch now… maybe he’ll offer to make the drinks when he gets back?

15:19 – Hurrah! BP announces that she’s going to make drinks in a few minutes. I tell her not to bother making one for AD since she obviously doesn’t want one.

15:27 – Will BP put the kettle on before I die of thirst? Submit third report to Kelly.

15:33 – Is that the kettle I can hear boiling?

15:40 – Still no drink… that BP is a demon at boiling the kettle and forgetting about it, as demonstrated already this morning.

15:43 – BP finally collects the mugs from our desks… hot drinks imminent!

15:46 – Suddenly realise that I haven’t specified that I’d like an Earl Grey tea instead of coffee for this round. Catch BP in the nick of time, phew!

15:49 – Whoo hoo! My tea arrives… only three and a half hours since our last hot drink then.

16:04 – A surprisingly good effort from BP – sweet and strong, just how I like it. 9/10 for that one!

16:17 – Finish my tea, mmm! Try and post a comment on Kelly’s blog but can’t remember my own log in details.

16:33 – Into the last 90 minutes of the working day. So will JC squeeze in with a late round of drinks like he did yesterday?

16:54 – Drinks have taken a back seat while I’ve been busy looking on Google to see if I come up on a search for Arcade Fire at Brixton Academy. If you put the phrase in quotations then I’m on the second page of results – I guess that’s why I’ve had a few hits today then.

17:06 – Stop searching for stuff relating to my blog on Google, it’s far too distracting!

17:12 – JC has finally escaped from the counter – so will we get a last gasp cup of coffee? It’s going to go right down to the wire!

17:32 - Into the final half hour. It's not going to happen, is it? Three measly drinks all day... a disappointing display.

17:59 - AD gets stuck with a massive festival booking just before we're about to close. That's karma at work. She should have made that drink at lunchtime...

You can read Kelly's transcript of her own Great Friday Tea Caper here.

Thursday, March 15, 2007

Arcade Fire at Brixton Academy

Arcade Fire - Brixton Academy

After the frenzy surrounding their low-key shows in January there was a real wave of expectation ahead of the return of Arcade Fire to London and their four night residency at the Brixton Academy. As so often happens at shows in the capital though, at times the crowd seemed quite subdued - a fact not lost on lead vocalist Win Butler who said it was like performing in a library at one point - although things did perk up whenever any tracks from Funeral were played. They started really brightly with two of the strongest tracks from Neon Bible, Keep The Car Running and No Cars Go... and after that, well, it calmed down a little. I think I had the most fun just watching the band in action, with ten of them on stage, all swapping instruments in between songs - visually they make a fascinating group of musicians to observe. Power Out was particularly good, with two of the band frantically whacking whatever they could find with their drumsticks, and this segued nicely into Rebellion (Lies) where this grey-haired old chap with a beer in one hand and a pair of crutches in the other came crashing through the audience... I think he was enjoying himself! Overall it was a great gig, but not an awesome one - in the end I just kept thinking how much better it would have been in a smaller venue as sadly I felt they were a bit swamped in the environs of the Academy. Still, I suppose I should count myself lucky as next time they'll no doubt be on the arena circuit...

Here's the setlist in full:
  • Keep The Car Running
  • No Cars Go
  • Haiti
  • Black Mirror
  • Ocean Of Noise
  • Neighborhood #1 (Tunnels)
  • The Well & The Lighthouse
  • Neighborhood #2 (Laika)
  • Black Wave/Bad Vibrations
  • Cold Wind
  • Neighborhood #3 (Power Out)
  • Rebellion (Lies)
  • Intervention
  • (Antichrist Television Blues)
  • Wake Up

Play It Cool in March

It's been a decent month for new music I reckon, some top albums coming out recently. Long may it continue throughout 2007! So here's what's been playing on my stereo:
  • Arcade Fire - Neon Bible (Merge)
  • The Sounds - Dying To Say This To You (Korova)
  • Switches - Heart Tuned To D.E.A.D. (Atlantic)
  • The Hold Steady - Boys And Girls In America (Vagrant)
  • Joy Zipper - American Whip (Mercury)

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Glasgow FrightFest Review

Rachael, D, me, Lauren and Kim at the GFT

My feature article covering the FrightFest all-dayer in Glasgow has now been completed and includes reviews of the following five films:

The Tripper:

"I'm still not sure exactly why I wrote the words 'Pig - bush' in my notes..."


"Resulted in a number of walkouts from people sickened by its subject matter..."

The Messengers:

"There were others in the audience who claimed the film could have been directed by monkeys..."

Turistas (soon to be retitled Paradise Lost in the UK):

"Effectively plays on the fears and urban myths of travelling in a foreign land..."

Motel Hell:

"Culminates in a chainsaw fight between one man wearing a pig's head and another swinging on a meat-hook like he's Indiana Jones..."

You can read my full review at Eat My Brains website here.

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Movie Haiku - Outlaw

Dir: Nick Love
Cast: Sean Bean, Danny Dyer, Lennie James, Bob Hoskins

Heroes or villains
he rallies an angry mob
shaky-cam returns

soulmining rating: *

Monday, March 12, 2007

Movie Haiku - Inland Empire

Dir: David Lynch

Cast: Laura Dern, Jeremy Irons, Justin Theroux, Harry Dean Stanton

Some have rabbit heads
acting death and dancing whores
a waking nightmare

soulmining rating: **

Sunday, March 11, 2007

Paul's 40th birthday bash!

Iloua with birthday boy Paul

Friday evening was hectic to say the least! I arrived in London mid-afternoon and after a quick bit of shopping and a bite to eat I met up with Clare at the Phoenix for a drink. It's the first time I've seen Clare since our time at the BKKIFF last February, so it was good to catch up now that she's in London working for the BFI. I then met up with D as we'd been invited to a preview screening of Danny Boyle's Sunshine over at Fox HQ in Soho Square (full review to follow in due course) and I was delighted to be able to meet Gia at the reception afterwards to thank her personally and to discuss the film. Then it was back to the Phoenix to help celebrate Paul McEvoy's upcoming 40th birthday! As always, Paul was the life and soul of the party and he seemed genuinely chuffed with the signed Hold Steady single and drumsticks that I'd got for him.

Simon Rumley & me

Sadly we'd already missed Alan Jones and Ian Rattray but there were plenty of other familiar faces at the party; FrightFest regulars Amanda, Paul, Kevin and Ian were good company as always, plus there was Louise, Michael and Laura who'd come down for the Matt Berry gig last week, and it was nice to catch up with old acquaintances like Jake West (Evil Aliens) and Chris Smith (Severance). Paul also introduced me to Ian Nathan and a couple of the writers from Empire magazine and I happily chatted to them for a short while. A little later on Mike and Kat turned up with Simon Rumley (The Living And The Dead) in tow, and then things really started to get a bit messy...

D with James McAvoy

I was having such a laugh with D and Simon that I couldn't bear to leave the party early, so I compromised by cutting down on my drinks but electing to stay and get the 4am train home. In our less-than-sober states we managed to collar James McAvoy (no relation) who'd managed to find the secret booth in the corner next to us and he was very friendly and happy to pose for a couple of pictures. I also ended up chatting to Carl (the man behind the excellent Ban The Sadist Videos! documentary), a certain short film and ad director by the name of Duncan Jones, and I finally got to meet Paul's best friend Julian - so it was a very sociable and enjoyable occasion, save for the one annoying drunk bloke who'd lost his bag and kept stumbling around bothering everyone. Typically my train journey home involved a replacement bus service due to engineering works, so I didn't get back to Brighton until 6am... not ideal with a ten hour shift at work looming!

Movie Haiku - Sunshine

Dir: Danny Boyle

Cast: Cillian Murphy, Chris Evans, Michelle Yeoh, Benedict Wong

Eight go mad in space
mission to reignite sun
you will stare in awe

soulmining rating: *****

Friday, March 09, 2007

Kevin Smith - Louder Than Bombs?

Oh yes, Kevin Smith is coming to the UK!

As most of you will already be aware, I am a HUGE Kevin Smith fan; I have all his films on DVD (yes, even Jersey Girl), I own a piece of Chasing Amy and have three signed and framed Kevin Smith film posters hanging up around my flat. So the chance to see the man in person is not to be missed! Thank heavens then that he's added a second date at the Prince Charles Cinema in London on 5th April, as I was gutted to see that tickets for the first night had already sold out. Kevin's legendary Q&A session will run for a whole four hours from 7-11pm and tickets are on sale via the website above.

Thursday, March 08, 2007

Inspiral Carpets at the Concorde

Inspiral Carpets - Brighton Concorde2

Baggy nostalgia hit Brighton on Wednesday night when the Inspiral Carpets came to town. I still can't quite remember if I ever saw them live in their prime (at a festival perhaps?) but the opportunity to see them across the road at the Concorde was too good to miss. The gig must have been close to sold out and I've never seen the bar so busy... the crowd were certainly up for it! Thankfully the band's enthusiasm matched the crowd's and they launched into their back catalogue with much gusto. Tom Hingley might be looking a little older and wider these days but he gave it his all, as did the rest of the Inspirals, leaping around the stage and repeatedly coming to the front to shake hands with the fans. The set primarly featured the big hits (as you'd expect) with This Is How It Feels, Dragging Me Down and Saturn 5 sounding as groovy as ever, backed by Clint Boon's terrific Hammond organ sound. Afterwards the band stayed on to spin a few records at the aftershow party, although we didn't hang around for long. Nice to see a band dedicated to having such a good time and so obviously enjoying their second coming!

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Movie Haiku - The Illusionist

Dir: Neil Burger

Cast: Edward Norton, Paul Giamatti, Jessica Biel, Rufus Sewell

Magician in love
but crown prince won't let her go
face fuzz fiesta

soulmining rating: ***

Movie Haiku - Ghost Rider

Dir: Mark Steven Johnson

Cast: Nicolas Cage, Eva Mendes, Sam Elliott, Peter Fonda

Cage rides fiery bike
flaming skull and dodgy hair
effects were improved

soulmining rating: ***

Sunday, March 04, 2007

Switches at the Pressure Point

Switches - Pressure Point, Brighton

I expected the Pressure Point to be packed on Saturday night for the Switches gig. Recent single Drama Queen was a staple tune on 6Music and even my work colleague Debbie is a fan - and she's usually months behind me when it comes to music! (Sorry Debs, but you know I speak the truth!) I guess the fact that The Killers were in town meant that all the cool indie kids (and Debbie) had tickets to see them instead, which was a shame as it left an audience of around forty to defiantly check out a band that are surely destined for success. And whilst it must be a disheartening experience for the band, if they keep writing songs as catchy as these then they won't be playing venues of this size for very much longer.

Switches aren't doing anything radically new or different, their songs fall firmly into the same bracket as The Automatic or The Fratellis, but like those two bands they're full of hooks and energy - perfect three minute modern pop songs. As forthcoming album Heart Tuned To D.E.A.D. will testify, there's plenty more where Drama Queen came from, with new single Lay Down The Law leading the way, and at least two or three other tracks standing out as potential singles. Perhaps unsurprisingly under the circumstances it was a short, punchy set from the band, but I'm sure we'll be hearing more from them again as 2007 continues.

Saturday, March 03, 2007

The Hold Steady at Resident Records

The Hold Steady - Resident Records, Brighton

While I didn't thank Paul for my hangover on Thursday morning, I do have to thank him for introducing me to The Hold Steady. He's been raving about their album Boys And Girls In America since the start of the year and more recently their live show at The Borderline in London. Rather luckily, last week the band announced they'd be coming down to Brighton for an instore at Resident Records, so naturally I made sure I was there to see them.

It was such a cool little gig; the shop (tiny at the best of times) was crammed and there was such a relaxed, fun atmosphere inside with the band hovering by the counter drinking cans of Stella. In the end they played a 45 minute acoustic set of American rock & blues which featured songs from the new album, including single Chips Ahoy! plus a couple of songs from Separation Sunday and one or two unreleased tracks. Singer Craig introduced each song and bantered with the crowd and it was just lovely. Afterwards the band hung around to chat and sign things and drummer Bobby even gave me his drumsticks! Definitely a band to watch out for, I hope they return for a 'proper' show in the city later in the year.

Movie Haiku - The Number 23

Dir: Joel Schumacher

Cast: Jim Carrey, Virginia Madsen, Logan Lerman, Danny Huston

Obsessed by number
paranoid that he will kill
it doesn't add up

soulmining rating: **

Friday, March 02, 2007

Matt Berry at the Komedia

Matt Berry with Rich Fulcher - Brighton Komedia

I'd love to give you an incisive review of Matt Berry at the Komedia on Wednesday evening, but truth be told I was very, very drunk. I do know that he sang One Track Lover as featured in the hit TV series Garth Marenghi's Darkplace, but that's about as much as I can remember. I'd even forgotten that Rich Fulcher (aka Bob Fossil) his co-star in The Mighty Boosh! had joined Matt on stage for a few numbers until I saw my photos the next morning!

Let's just call it "The McEvoy Effect" (© Lauren) shall we? Yes, Paul was down from London with Louise, Michael & Laura in tow and we made the mistake of being on a liquid diet all evening... needless to say the end of the night is somewhat hazy (or indeed missing) and I was rather worried to hear my boss tell me that I was "a mess" in the Waggon sometime after 11pm as I have no recollection of going in there at all on my way home.

Paul, Matt and me... with more pints!

Oh yes, and Paul knows Matt fairly well so we got to meet him after the show. I have absolutely no idea what I said to him and just pray that I didn't make a total tit of myself.

The resulting hangover was an absolute killer... never again!

Thursday, March 01, 2007

March Live

After a very quiet January/February the calendar is now bursting with dates as a whole heap of bands and musicians are booking shows in our city. March is going to be pretty hectic around here... have a look at some of this month's highlights:

01/03 - If I'd posted this earlier today I would have told you to dash down to Resident Records at 6:30pm to catch an exclusive acoustic set from The Hold Steady. I was there and will post a photo or two on here in the next few days.

03/03 - Ahh, I remember seeing The Killers at the Zap Club not so long ago... now on the back of their underwhelming second album Sam's Town, they're firmly on the arena circuit and are playing at Brighton Centre. Instead I will be checking out Switches at the Pressure Point - their ELO/Dandys sounding single Drama Queen hints at great things.

07/03 - I can't remember if I ever saw the Inspiral Carpets first time around at the height of their success, but now they're back on the circuit and roll up at the Concorde. Always a good singles band, this should be an evening of fond 'baggy' nostalgia.

08/03 - Not a favourite of mine, but just a quick mention for James Morrison who's appearing at the Dome. Andy & I saw him support Corinne Bailey Rae at the Concorde early last year and said he'd go far... how right we were. Please, enough, no more of these sensitive blokes with their guitars!

14/03 - Gig of the month, albeit not in Brighton. After missing out on tickets for their low key London dates in January I'm delighted to have got tickets to see Arcade Fire at Brixton Academy. Funeral is one of my favourite albums of the past couple of years, and I've just got a copy of Neon Bible which sounds equally compelling. I'm just hoping they're half as good live as everyone says they are.

19/03 - My favourite band of the moment is The Sounds, purveyors of Swedish electro-rock. Their Dying To Say This To You album is a cracker and they're playing at the Pressure Point, so this should be a great small venue to catch them in before they explode.

20/03 - The last time I saw Thea Gilmore at the Komedia I got told off for talking during her set... Yeah, I was a little drunk, but her songs didn't grab me like a lot of female singer/songwriters do. However, this time Erin McKeown supports and her last album We Will Become Like Birds was terrific, so maybe. Alternatively there's the suave sounds of Bryan Ferry over at the Dome.

24/03 - I haven't heard much of her stuff yet but there's a certain buzz around Kate Nash at the moment, so I'm going to take a chance and see her intimate gig at Red Roaster. She could be the next KT Tunstall... or she could just be the new Sandi Thom. Let's see.

29/03 - Another London gig, and another band of the moment as I'm going to check out The Shins at The Forum. Their current album Wincing The Night Away is my favourite of 2007 so far, so I definitely want to see them while I can.

31/03 - Rounding off the month we've got The Fall at the Pavilion Theatre for the second of two shows in Brighton (the other one is at The Old Market) in March. Always a bit wayward, who knows what will happen when Mark E. Smith takes to the stage with his latest incarnation of the band. If he turns up at all, of course.