Thursday, 11 October 2007

Issue #1 - A Rant Down The Rave


THIS MONTH: Well, everything.

Are you tired of getting handed those deplorable free papers on your way home from the wankplace, only to peer down at their front pages and see Paris grinning back at you / Britney sneering back at you / Doherty glazing over and flicking that most rock’n’roll of gestures, the V, at you?

I certainly am, and I don’t even bother reading them anymore. I know celebrities and their ilk are something of an easy target, but they’re a target worthy of shooting time and time again when you realise a great many people in this day’n’age struggle to tell the difference between Tony and Lionel (well, up until Lionel’s ‘hilarious’ turn on that Catherine Tate comic relief thing, anyway) and are more likely to answer the question ‘who is Cameron?’ with ‘Justin’s ex.’

Not that I’m greatly concerned with politics myself, but in order to know the difference between shit and faeces, one first needs to know what shit and faeces are exactly. Or some such. But you get the general idea. Anyway, let’s take a look at some of our favourite ‘slebs’, assess their various crimes and work out what punishments they need dishin’ out to ‘em….

NAME: Paris Hilton
DESCRIPTION: Snotty-nosed sex-taping lollypop stick. Done some time in the slammer for something or other. Named after a chain of hotels that counts ‘Bognor Hilton’, ‘Hackney Hilton’, ‘Croxteth Hilton’ and ‘Poole Hilton’ amongst its number.
THE CRIMES: Appearing in newspapers more often than news does; releasing some record or other despite having zero talent and shit-for-brains; generally being a bint.
THE PUNISHMENT: Being forced to return to the slammer only to find herself locked in a box-cell with ten other inmates, five of whom are sex-starved mentalists, the other five being mentalist-starved sex offenders.
NAME: Peaches Geldof
DESCRIPTION: Daughter of some bloke who swore a lot if you didn’t give money to charity. Always ‘on the scene’, wherever that may be.
THE CRIMES: Letting Donald Tourette get his filthy end away with her (allegedly); being under 12, getting into clubs and even being photographed whilst doing it where so many of her contemporaries who no doubt gobble less snot get laughed at week-in, week-out, up and down the land trying to do the exact same thing; DJ’ing when she could be revising for her exams, the thoughtless wench.
THE PUNISHMENT: Instead of going to clubs, being forced to appear on national television sat next to her father when he is in the middle of a six-hour version of one of his ‘Live Aid’ rants (or, better still, a six-hour version of ‘I Don’t Like Mondays.’

NAME: Pete Doherty
DESCRIPTION: Hang around Camden Town tube station long enough during the early hours and you’ll get a better picture than any of these words could paint.
THE CRIMES: About 647, lass time we cared. That was quite a while ago though, so you may as well add another 249 to that. Oh, hang on, someone’s just texted me. Let me read it out. ‘Doherty’s been arrested for driving erratically while in possession of heroin & crack.’ Blimey, I get those more than I get those promotional update texts from sodding Vodafone. Twerp.
THE PUNISHMENT: S’cuse me, Officer McLeish? You see that key there? Yeah, sling it….

NAME: Jordan & Peter Andre
DESCRIPTION: It’s had to know where to begin….
THE CRIMES: Existing.

Issue #1 - Reviews Part Two

White Heat @ Madame Jojos

You may have heard things about These New Puritans, one such thing being that they are really rather good. So it is with some trepidation that we venture out to witness their show at Madame Jojos…I mean, The Next Big Thing being shown up to be a musically-challenged shambles of crap hair and daft clothing (the colour coordination of which, or lack of, being the most remarkable thing about them)? Never…..

Thankfully, this is not the case with TNP. Four youths from Southend, they bizarrely resemble some kind of humanoid race of martians, and make the sort of music you would hope such a race would make. Their one concession to garish gear is the singer’s gold lame shirt, which may well end up on the racks of Top Shop if TNP succeed in getting their music out to the masses. But this is neither here nor there.

Their music, based around pounding rhythms, certainly recalls the post-punk stylings of PiL, Gang of Four and Joy Division. At times, however, it descends into such danciness that recalls the big beat bands of the late 90s. On top of this, swirling synths and scratchy guitars (which bring to mind Sonic Youth & My Bloody Valentine as well as the aforementioned post-punk bands) lend the sound some melodic respite, but it is when TNP let the beats dictate proceedings that they really shine.

From Southend to where? The racks of Top Shop at very least, if tonight’s show is anything to go by.

Noggs Mannberger
The Pleasure Unit

These past few years have seen many a monkey try to combine laptops’n’guitars in a faux-fashionable attempt to make something ‘modern’, something ‘new’…in reality, people often just end up making something ‘shit’, and I should know, I used to do it meself.

The Resistance do not. One gets the distinct impression that their use of laptops’n’guitars is a necessity. And necessities aren’t all humdrum, you know. Certainly not in their case. Because there is nothing, repeat, nothing humdrum about The Resistance.

If you get the chance to hear their current promo, don’t bother. Witness their dribbling psychopath of a live show instead. Because what lies on CD does not do the outfit any justice of any kind. Where you might describe the more upbeat moments on the CD as ‘lively’, in the flesh they become ‘raucous.’ To say the least.

Four young men who look like various members of the Mary Chain, House of Love, MBV and other Creation geniuses, their setup is like so – two noisey guitars put through effects units, one laptop making a synthesised racket of samples, and one towering singer knocking out the beat (yes, the beat) on the floor with a tambourine. Well, if simple percussion worked for the Velvets & the Mary Chain…

And indeed the songs are sometimes reminiscent of the way the Mary Chain would combine white noise with those Beach Boys-esque melodies. However, this is, ahem, ‘modern.’ Behind the band a psychedelic projection displays an array of images that compliment the group’s riotous freak-out well, despite being soaked in rather more rock’n’roll cool than the rest of the live experience would suggest.

So, The Resistance…I might end up contradicting myself here but it must be said….something indeed ‘new’, certainly something ‘modern.’ But definitely nothing ‘shit.’

Horacio Mitchell


Issue #1 - Reviews

Playlouder Night @ The Old Blue Last

There are those who loathe The Old Blue Last and, with its reputation, it’s not difficult to understand why. Vice Magazine; Shoreditch trendies; er, well, that’s about it. Yes, the upstairs may well be small and really rather dingy but sometimes venues such as this lend a sense of atmosphere to music that thrives on it in order to create it.

Monday Club kick off the show in suitably atmospheric fashion. The introduction of the first song is delivered a capella by the singer/guitarist and bassist before the drums kick in and all hell, quite frankly, threatens to break loose.

Borrowing liberally from the back catalogues of bands such as Joy Division and Bauhaus (never a bad thing, even when pilfering the bossa nova beat from ‘Bela Lugosi’s Dead’ wholesale for a few bars of one song) the group make a haunting racket, which acts as the perfect vehicle for the bluesy, smokey vocals. By the end of it, you realise that they have something of a knack for winning you over with their charm before bludgeoning your ears with their doom-laden tunes. A winner all round, then.

The Violets have been around for a fair few years now, but you wouldn’t know it from their fresh and vibrant live show. Immediately, and inevitably, images of S*ou*sie & the B*nsh**s spring straight to mind, but it’s the depth in their sound which grabs you, not to mention the arresting stage presence of singer Alexis. Melodic basslines and sharp, chiming guitar parts make up many of their songs and eventually live synths are used to give their sound that extra depth. The songs range from being soundtracks to the hidden corners of one’s imagination to dark and thundering electropop beasts.

With a repertoire and live show as good as is evidenced tonight, it should come as no shock that The Violets are one of the most exciting live propositions in London right now. Go and see them before they promptly leave the small environs (and atmospherics) of venues such as The Old Blue Last well and truly behind.

Issue #1 - Interview with RMF Noir


RMF Noir is the art-noise project of Rob Fenner. Sonically, it is extremely difficult to pigeonhole (partly the point) but it draws equally from cold wave, noise, electronica and punk. A limited edition EP, ‘Summer Love Songs’, is out at the moment. Previously, Rob has worked as No Kisses (an Adult-influenced electropop outfit) and as keyboardist for Sub-Culture and The Firm, who he has been known to moonlight for in recent times.

Clearly a very busy man (he has also done the odd soundtrack and score, more of which later), we wonder quite how the EP came about. ‘I’m surprised I managed to put anything out in the end, considering the amount of cancelled projects and unreleased material I’ve had under my belt since 2005’s A Girl Strife EP,’ he muses. ‘There was never an initial plan though – this was very spur of the moment. It’s all brand-new material that I’ve written over the Summer, with each song following the overlying theme of love’s more unpleasant aspects.’

When quizzed on who or what inspires him to make the punishing and hard-edged sounds he does, his response paints a pessimistic (but probably quite accurate) picture of the world today. ‘It’s a sliding scale, really. Things are getting more and more apocalyptic each year. The mavens said the world is going to end in 2012. Lately we’ve had bird flu, terror moral panic, and 2007’s revelation about bees losing their navigational abilities due to interference from cellular signals and dying out….they say that when the bees go, man has only five years left…which brings us back to 2012. Short answer? “The lighter side of hopelessness” is a big theme in my work. As for who inspires me? Just about every single person I meet. And my family.’

Listening to Summer Love Songs, you can certainly detect a cinematic quality within the music. So it should come as no surprise that Rob has more than dipped his toe in the waters of scores and soundtracks. ‘I wrote the score and created the sound effects for a deaf animation student’s cartoon this year, and I’m currently putting the finishing touches on a rescore of Jan Svankmajer’s Alice. On that horizon, I’ve been asked to write the music for a few amateur computer games, namely a fan-made remake of Falcon classic “Brandish.” Work on that is beginning in the next few weeks.’

RMF Noir is certainly a far cry from the lively beats and dark catchiness of No Kisses. Although not occupying Rob’s time at the moment, the latter is certainly far from dead. ‘No Kisses was/is basically my pop music, or ‘misanthropop’ as I prefer to call it,’ he says. ‘A single called “Swastika Sally/The Smoking Room” was briefly in distribution during Spring 2006, but I became preoccupied with other projects – as well as real life – and no other material was ever released. That doesn’t mean the project is dead though.’ When asked when we might expect to hear a follow-up to the aforementioned single, ‘early to mid 2008 at the latest’ is his response.

So what is next on the horizon? ‘Anarchy at your local Pret-a-Manger. Oh, and I’m also part of a two-piece dark ambient project called The Hostile Takeovers, alongside a key member of Patricide. Watch out for that.’

Like we said, a busy man….


‘Basically, as abstract as its contents is, the EP is an autobiographical account of recent events. It begins with “Done Me Wrong”, a bleak, to-the-point omen of things to come. “Things Stay the Same” is a howling descent into a tale of love gone stale and awry. A new, dreamlike romance is detailed in “Our Love”, but quickly takes a surreal, nightmarish turn. Things finish off with “Stray”, an angry cautionary tale, or warning. Bookending each of these songs are short, disorienting compositions which fit the theme and compliment each piece nicely. It’s all quite angsty, really…but it’s just as tongue-in-cheek as all of my releases.’

Issue #1 - Vapour Trail


The Vapour Trail is the new monthly clubnight taking place at The Old Kings Head on the Holloway Road. It takes place every second Wednesday of the month and if you appear brandishing a copy of this very chip paper, you even get a quid off. Then you can sling it.

The Vapour Trail
The Old Kings Head
382 Holloway Road
N7 6PN

8pm – till late
£3 with flyer/fanzine
£4 without

Nearest tube: Holloway Road
Buses: 29, 43, 253, 271, 91, 17, 153, 254

Including, over the coming months:

Monocle Rose
The Resistance
The Firm
Monday Club
The Drowners

Julia Sieradzki
DJ Magenta
Rob Fenner