Archive for August, 2010
After the hailstorm of releases on the good ship Alcopop in May, June and July it may seemed to have fallen a little quiet in the month of August. But fret not good poppers, for while Kev and I may have all the appearance of having chucked our lot in for the summer to take well earned breaks of booze and burnt BBQs, nothing could be further from the truth – well… It could, but not many things.
You see, we’re actually busily preparing for what could possibly be the 3 busiest months in our history, and while it’s not all ‘out there’ yet – I can confirm *deep breath*… We’ll have two new really, REALLY exciting signings (at least), be releasing our first ever 12” record, putting out 2 full length albums, one each from My First Tooth and The Attika State – sending nearly all our bands on tour, getting a new website, booking some December shows, running a stage at Southsea Festival, and adding the odd single, EP, T-Shirt and 7” to that lot too.
So excited!!! And I do hope you fancy crashing along for the ride with us sweet poppers…
So, in homage to the chaos that is currently ensuing at PoP HQ – I’d like to share with you this marvelous video that for me, makes life that little bit more ace on this balmy Monday evening. A video of Penguins chasing butterflys… Ace! I’d love to be hanging out with this lot…
Have a look, then pop below to see the Attika State tour dates too which are looking grand, grand, grand!
A while back someone started sending me little motorbikes through the post. Not real ones, but small things – which was pleasant enough. Well it turned out it was the good people of Red Bull, who went on to invite me to their X-Fighter event in London, all powered by free booze which, as anyone who deals with indie labels knows, is usually enough to get any of us anywhere. Unfortunately, I was wrecking myself hard in Hungary at the time, so I sent Alcopop 5-a-side keeper, and NBA Jam tournament winner Thom along to check it out… It seems like he had a pretty fine time! Check it…. I’ll be there next time
“With Battersea Power Station origins emanating in the 1930’s and Red Bull X-Fighters spectacular beginnings in 2001 a man with less vision may not have been able to picture the two together. But like a young buxom broad who marries an 80 year old wealthy pensioner the two together is a thing of absolute beauty, at least for everyone present!!
Saturday 14th of September a day that saw the 2010 X-Fighters Tour return to Britain’s most iconic power station and the largest brick built building in Europe. I watched in ore of a beautifully stylised event that only Red Bull could pull off.
I rocked up just in time to see a generic blond haired stud play the National Anthem on his Fender. As I desperately tried to remember the words, the X-Fighters that 28,000 people came to see cruised out to rapturous applause in a stream of London Black Taxis.
The most technically gifted FMX riders in the world were all present. Young Levi Sherwood immediately caught my attention. Perhaps it was his native NZ flag wrapped around his neck like Superman but most likely I was attracted to the swagger and confidence that flowed through the man.
With the great British weather deciding to rain down on Battersea hours before the event it was only a matter of time before the course began to cut up. Championship leader Andre Villa obviously couldn’t care less as he came out for his practise run with scant regard for the conditions. A man who I’m told has had his fair share of serious injures was to get another as he lost control of his Yamaha YZ250 and went off like superman into the crowd.
With 3 of the general public hospitalised and Villa sporting a facial scare to make your mum cringe but your daughter wet, confusion was rife as to whether the event would continue.
The replays shone out and the ooo’s and ahh’s of the crowd could be heard all the way from the bar as The Red Bull Cola Spice Rum’s flowed freely. The 3 drink at a time minimum was not welcomed but probably wise as the rest of the action that followed was spectacular.
Sadly Robbie Maddison a favourite with the London crowd ever since he jumped the Tower Bridge in 2009 could only manage a disappointing tenth. Adam Jones who spectacularly won in Cairo/Egypt in front of the Great Sphinx finished a credible 5th.
It was left to Nate Adams 2009 tour winner and Levi Sherwood to battle it out head to head for the London Tour title. As they performed their best repertoire over 90 seconds to me it was clear there was only one winner. The judges split it two votes each leaving the fate of the X-Fighters to the judge gauging the crowd’s reaction. London was with me… Levi Sherwood the Icon, the Showstopper and definitely The Main Event won with his inimitable style.
Wow simply wow…”
Oh I love this video! And despite the fact that at least 3/4 of My First Tooth were nearly blinded by wayward pens during its inception – it seems all went swimmingly. Filmed in N’Town’s primary venue, The Labour Club, extras came and went and did some rather cool, nifty creative things, made pretty masks and filled Ross’ pockets with streamers.
Voila – Orchards is killer! And available now in super cheap ‘pass it on’ format as a 10-pack card split with the lovely Momeraths in the Alcopop shop! Watch and love, especially the bit at the end where Gareth gets his head slapped at the end *sniggers*
Long considered the pestiest festival (its a Hungarain word – I have no idea what it means but it seems to be everywhere), I thought it was high time to get in the air again and visit Budapest for Sziget festival…. And amidst blazing sun, 3 pound bottles of rose and enough awful cabbage and egg topped snacks that you can shake a Hungo stick at, I’m here and making use of the limited press facilities to give you a little update.
Highlights thus far of (I’ve got to be honest, a pretty underwhelming line up) have been Madness, who surprised me with a great ’actually I know all of these’ set – and the presence of free table football and swinging chairs in VIP – though with Pappa Roach and Monster Magnet (not to mention the Cribs) still to come, there are some bands Im actually really excited about. Sure its a bit more metal than Team PoP but ive got some pretty epic moshpit hair you know so I probably ought to use it.
Meanwhile – I thought I should also mention that have you not done so. you should definitely visit Bratislava. We popped in on the way and the place was awesome, really cheap (we’re talking under a pound a beer in some and we got to sleep on a boat – cleverly named boatel. Definitely need to speak to Kev about hiring a vessel and charting a floating Alcopop HQ in Eastern Europe… Might mean I’d have to put the postage up a bit though, although nightly full roster boat parties could be the order of the day… Oh yes!
Anyway – lots of pints of Dreher are calling – the big air con fan is on. and thus I must away to discuss My First Tooth drummer Gareth Amwel Jone’s debut spoken word album with many high ranking Hungarian musos (perhaps). Pop love to you all xx
Ed Harcourt is awesome yes…? But before Ed and his majestic take on the extroverted, jaunty, alternative musical world came Snug who, in my youth, were perhaps one of my favourite indie pop bands around. These were the days before one was well advised to take Google search terms into account when picking a band name (yawn), and when big brash keyboards, punchy fuzzing guitars and perfectly sumptious melodies promised, nay demanded, big label investment destined never to be returned.
And jesus did Snug do it well. Featuring superstar Ed Harcourt on bass (this time playing second fiddle to the exquisitely named James Deane – the frontman still gigging regularly in Guildford to this day)… The teenage sensations kicked all sorts of ass – most notably with minor mid-90’s hit Beatnik Girl. Featuring the then sensationally hot Melinda Messenger as a ninja bashing hero in the video, the song was as shiny as a chrome covered sunbeam – and bounced along like a space-hopper on a trampoline.
‘She goes to college and she wears the nice shoes/ she wears a polo neck jumper and she’s really cool/ I feel so good inside, when I see her Beatnik behind/ and I knew she was the one, cos she was reading Naked Lunch’ go the lyrics. Fizz, fizz, fizz go the awesome melodies – and well really, this is just such a mid 90s zeitgeist indie pop hit! And for anyone who ever comes across the EP at a record fayre – buy it… I can’t imagine it’ll be more than 50p and I can promise you the B-sides will leave sparkles in the ears!
Watch and listen below… And dream of a time that indie record stores flourished across the country selling red hot hits like this to starry eyed teenagers! Ah good times…
Yesterday was rather fun in the world of Alcopop, and tooled up with Rubicon of all flavours (other than Lychee of course, Lychee sucks) and vodka – Kev and I hit the big smoke for the Idle Hands showcase. It was a charming afternoon with plenty of chums (including handsome heroes from Stagecoach, Elephants, Pandycane, Friends Versus Records and BSM), and Ute were ‘proper stand out’ for me, performing a vivacious set with plenty of delightful wit intertwining the tracks. Oxford’s finest? Definitely there or thereabouts…
But enjoying a swell pint with the handsome Matt Emery (pictured) post gig in a ‘The Champion’ pub nearby, I was reminded that I’m yet to put up a blog post with perhaps the biggest Alcopop news that ever there has been! It’s been a blast of a summer, we’ve got a new signing to announce that’s blown our minds coming soon, and now… Well F**K me! Stagecoach have been booked for Reading and Leeds festival. Ole!
Sharing the R1 Introducing stage with the likes of Little Fish, Gallops and more – we’re not sure entirely what time the ‘awesome live band’ (Huw Stephens) are on – but you should definitely check it out if you have tickets to the festival. Reading Friday, Leeds Sunday – and you just know we’ll be in strong, and handsome (of course) attendance. Free pint (even at Reading prices) to the first person I see in an Alcopop related tee!