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Archive for July, 2002

A Cheery Wave From Stranded Youngsters

Posted: July 25th, 2002, by Marceline Smith

I forgot to say that when I was away Up North last week visiting my family I bought a finger puppet of a big eyeball! It’s pretty fantastic. I need some more plus Playmobil men and then I can make my own mental version of The Residents!

Okay, fanzine #2 is A Cheery Wave From Stranded Youngsters and I’ve managed to lose Al’s letter so I can’t remember what issue this is or how much it costs – DUH. Sorry about that. This issue’s mostly filled with lots and lots of lengthy gig reviews covering Trail of Dead, Fonda 500, Sigur Ros, Brian Wilson, The Rock of Travolta, Babes in Toyland and Maher Shalal Hash Baz amongst others written by a whole host of contributing writers. There’s also interviews with The Flashing Astonishers and The Supernaturals [when did they come back? and, more importantly, why? It’ll be The Gyres next], record reviews dotted about the place, a crossword and a good article on whether today’s bands are retro copycats or not, all illustrated with Al’s cartoon drawings. This issue is slightly lacking in bands that I’m excited about but it’s a good read nevertheless. Probably I’m getting too old. If I find that letter I’ll post up the proper details but I think it’s £1.50 to Al Maceachern, 6 Angotts Mead, Stevenage, Herts SG1 2NJ. Or email Al and ask him at alcwsy@hotmail.com

The Blooding

Posted: July 24th, 2002, by Marceline Smith

Don’t worry folks, I’m back and I’ve got fanzines to tell you about. I should have mentioned these ages ago so apologies to the people involved. I’ve been ill though boo hoo so forgive me.

First up is The Blooding which is a new fanzine based in Devon. It looks pretty fantastic as well, exactly like an old school jotter. I feel quite nostalgic looking at it. I feel like someone’s going to tell me to cover my book [in posters torn out of Smash Hits naturally] and write a book report on The Hill Of The Red Fox. But no, inside it’s even better than Gaelic Lairds smuggling guns since it’s got generally great interviews with Guy Fugazi, Bob Weston of Shellac, Les Savy Fav, Sean Organ, Steve Gullick, FrenchKiss Records, local kids Tyler and Richie Mills ex of Cable on the story behind the band’s demise. Blimey! As well as that you get bits and pieces on Dance of Days, All Gone Wrong Records, Kids Near Water, Positive Force DC, an excellent review of ATP2002 and a reprint of Nirvana’s open letter to fans over their feud with Courtney Love which has put me firmly on Courtney’s side thanks to their pathetic whining tone throughout. I shouldn’t even be needing to encourage you to buy this, you’re already skimming down to the contact details I imagine so I won’t hold you up. I do wonder how they’re going to top this next issue. I await it with great interest. In the meantime you should be packing £1.50 carefully into an envelope [I’d stick the coins to bit of cardboard if I were you] and addressing it to Jamie and Robin at 81 Mary Street, Bovey Tracey, Devon, TQ13 9HQ. Email them at the_blooding@hotmail.com if you’ve got any questions. You can also pick up a copy at the Cavern in Exeter.

More zines tomorrow. If you’re lucky

Mercury Rev

Posted: July 17th, 2002, by Ollie

I’ll try and avoid a repeat of my Six By Seven blog, which hung on the fact that “they’re not as good as they used to be”, but Mercury Rev sucked last night. I’m aware that my tastes have changed greatly since i was really into them, like 4 or 5 years ago, so that has as much to do with it as anything else, but I was still bored rigid throughout their entire set. It’s all so safe, so middle-aged, so fucking….lame! Where once I found Jonathan Donahue’s weirdo Mark Almond-esque dancing mysterious and unusual and cool, I now just want to yell “get a job!”. Grasshopper! The man could very well play in Michael Bolton’s backing band, sneaking off for a quick wank over his stupendous fretwork every couple of minutes. Not one song had any hint of the kind of dynamic that once made them great. They’ve been playing them all for so long and they’ve got them all so polished that to hear them now, it’s hard to distinguish one song from the next in the continually plodding mid-tempo cabaret. If last night’s gig was represented on a cardiograph machine, it would be a flatliner. All the ingredients were there for a fucking awful gig; rediculously expensive ticket, rediculously shite support band who are the current NME hypes, but in reality are a bunch of posing schmindie losers (Minuteman, in case you hadn’t guessed already), and last but not least a tired old middle-aged band, and their middle-aged fans who follow them round blindly applauding for years after they released anything decent.

Reading record shopping

Posted: July 14th, 2002, by Simon Minter

I moved from Reading to Oxford, and celebrated by, err… spending a day out in Reading. And now the good things begin: as I waited to buy a selection of obscure indepedent records from the local friendly second-hand record shop, the nice guy who works there, and knows my obscure independent interests, said ‘oh, I sorted out a pile of stuff you might be interested in, it’s over there’. That’s nice, huh? So I take a look through and I’m exceptionally pleased to find the 4 TUNNA BRIX 12″ by Sonic Youth, which I’ve been after for, like, YEARS. It’s the bootleg(ish) 12″ of their Peel Session of Fall covers from 1989. ‘How much?’ I ask. ‘To you mate, five pounds’. Hurray! I think. So much less than the fifteen quid I saw it on eBay for, yesterday. Of course, I know there’s a 7″ of these tracks out there somewhere, too, so now I have to find that…

Hurray hurray!

Posted: July 10th, 2002, by Marceline Smith

The Morning News have remembered how to be funny and witty and silly. I mean I really liked the new articles stuff and all the contributors but I missed the personal edge and the little anecdotes of what stupid stuff they’d been up to. It was like diskant without ME. And, ahem, who could imagine that? So hurray hurray, as I already said, for Letters From The Editors, Rosecrans and Andrew, both of which made me laugh out loud. I am officially jealous of the illustrations idea as well.

That’s the only hurray hurray news for today I’m afraid. The rest of my time is being spent riding the giddy rollercoaster of emotion all the way through frustration, depression, doom, gloom and the painful sparks of dashed hope. Otherwise known as trying to get your email via a proxy server. If anyone would like to come round and kill me then feel free. Or help me, that might even be better. That’s also a roundabout way of saying, ‘yes I am ignoring all your emails but not deliberately’.

The Flaming Lips

Posted: July 10th, 2002, by Ollie

I listen to a lot of unpleasant gloomy crap, but I now know that as long as I keep going to see The Flaming Lips every couple of years, there will always be some musical balance in my life. I had seen them twice before last night, and both times had been spectacular epic occasions, the kind of thing you look back on with a teary eye and a grin in years to come, so my expectactions were high as they rolled into my fair city for the first time. Race For The Prize has to be one of the best songs it is possible to start a show with, it’s absolutely huge. Unfortunatly it came second last night, but seeing as they’re touring for their new album you can hardly blame them for keeping it fresh. They still came through with all the crazy stuff though, fake blood and monkey hand puppets and giant rabbit costumes and a truckload of confetti, and even though it was practially exactly the same as every other time I’ve seen them, they still made me feel like all was right with the world, they made me want to dance and smile and run around barefoot and have water fights and…yeah, you get the idea. It may well have been the wrong side of cheesy on a few occasions, but it was still an event, which makes a huge change from the posing introverted sixth form post-rock dirge I find myself watching with alarming frequency. I’m sure if I saw that kind of thing all the time it would get old pretty quickly, but as long as I can go on seeing The Lips every once in a while, then I get the feeling that everything will be just fine.

5 things I discovered last week

Posted: July 9th, 2002, by John Coburn

1. Home-grown chillies are not good for the stomach.
2. Damien Frost records are great.
3. The tv programme ‘Six Feet Under’ is great.
4. If you ask for a can of Tab Clear in a newsagent’s people will laugh at you.
5. Jimmy Saville was once a professional wrestler.

What a week

Posted: July 8th, 2002, by Ollie

I’ve been buying Super Nintendos and eating King Size Snickers. What a week.