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Sunday, 23 September 2012

Questions For You (Yes, You)

When I was 16 I started a fanzine called Construction House, a monthly tribute in print to the music I wanted to read about, so wrote about. It ran for just over two years, just after I left the band I was in to make music on my own. I mainly stopped distributing it to curtail the mad temptation to incessantly write about myself. (Though I suppose I only have this blog for that very purpose.)

Through the fanzine, I put on shows both in London and my home town of Brentwood, reviewed records and conducted interviews with bands from around the country, a few of which have gone on to have some notable success (hearing S.C.U.M's "Whitechapel" played over a trailer for Channel 4's My Transsexual Summer was an especially proud moment for me - they were issue #4's cover stars).

I used to love going from record shop to music bar to record shop to trendy pub to leave my lovingly crafted mixture of reviews, photographs, interviews and (admittedly crap) poetry with their proprietors. At shows I would glow with pride when punters picked up a copy of Construction House and reacted with anything other than outright disgust; I would practically vomit with delight when people actually appeared to be reading them.

In short, it was a blast. I loved receiving contributions from friends and strangers, I loved compiling the mailing list (at its most popular, CH went out to just under a hundred people a month, which isn't so bad, especially when you consider that NME now sells about minus two million copies each week), I loved individually stapling the fucking things together and inevitably shredding my hands with paper cuts, the wimpiest of all injuries.

Anyway, the questions I have are these: should I do it again? And if I do, which, let's face it, I'm going to no matter what your stupid opinion is, what should I call it? All suggestions welcome, though on matters of creativity are mostly wilfully ignored. Contributions and ideas on all topics are always welcome, relevant to this blog post or not. But you knew that anyway. 

Tuesday, 28 August 2012

Wednesday, 8 August 2012

EIOH and Me


I'm very much looking forward to playing with the esteemed Electricity In Our Homes next week at Stoke Newington's Birthdays. It's been almost a year since we shared the stage; far too long, in my opinion.

If you're unfamiliar with the group (pah), watch this video for "Appletree", produced by my friend Tim Burgess.



Tuesday, 7 August 2012

Show Cancellation

So, yesterday I was in the studio rehearsing for this


with these people


but due to promoter Ross Roberts being ill we've had to cancel. Apologies to anyone who bought tickets to come and see me (contact ROPE. for information on refunds, etc), Ross promises he and I will do something big together very soon. 

Watch this space.

Wednesday, 25 July 2012

Fanzinery, again


Just received the latest issue of Woodnote; I gave them an interview recently. Also featured are Factory Floor, Carter Tutti Void and Tim Burgess. 

Tuesday, 24 July 2012

Rentboy

I've had Marry Me Tonight by @HTRK_ on a loop for days now. I learned to play a crude cover of "Rentboy", my favourite song from the album; here it is.

Tuesday, 10 July 2012

Tuesday, 12 June 2012

1234 Announced

I have been confirmed as one of the many exciting artists (or "acts" as morons insist on calling us) to grace the stage at this year's 1234.

Festivities begin on the 1st September, for a list of all the newly announced groups, visit: http://thefourohfive.com/news/article/1234-shoreditch-2012-unveil-new-acts-including-deap-valley

Thursday, 31 May 2012

Cura Album

The band I sing for with my old producing buddy Daniel Lea, Cura Machines, have just finished a debut album. Everything else is currently a secret but there is exciting news to come. Stay tuned.

Friday, 25 May 2012

Artist Of The Week: Bobby Pyn

This week I'm extolling the virtues of one Bobby Pyn, the musical alias of Danny Stead, guitarist and vocalist of psych weirdos Miss Cosmos.



He currently plays solo with a beaten up guitar and is yet to play a show, but his Syd Barrett inspired folk-isms are marvellous and I'm going to bully him into joining me onstage very shortly. Listen below.



Wednesday, 23 May 2012

More Fanzine Writing

I recently wrote a piece on Sarah Johns for Abigail Gillibrand's fanzine, Woodnote. It's out now, look Abi up on Twitter to request your copy.

Friday, 18 May 2012

Artist of the Week

On Fridays, instead of doing an FF hashtag or whatever, I've decided to have an 'artist of the week', someone I like that you may not have heard of before.



This week's is Holly Herndon, find her on Twitter and listen to her music below. It's noisy, compelling stuff.



Tuesday, 15 May 2012

The Emperor Of America (Video)

To mark the release of my latest track, "The Emperor Of America", available for free from my Facebook page, Tim Garratt has uploaded his video of me singing in-studio. Here I am:



Please re-blog, share and re-use this video as much as possible; I'd like everybody to be able to see it. Thank you.

Thursday, 10 May 2012

Free Song, Free Film, Free Date

So the stuff I've been hinting about over Twitter etc recently has all come together rather nicely. Here's the rub:

I was approached by a small film company called PGXism and asked to be the first artist to feature in one of a series of shorts about, uh, bands and artists. It looks pretty good to me, you can watch it here. I talk about my new band and living in Brentwood; there's some live footage too.

As part of the whole package, I decided to give away a new song too. You can download "The Emperor Of America" by going to my Facebook page, clicking on the download button at the top of the page, and then clicking like to get a private link to the song. Easy. Please write to me and tell me if you love or hate the song, or if you couldn't care less.

To celebrate this multimedia bonanza (not really, we're getting paid to turn up), the band and I will be appearing at a free show at The Old Blue Last on Great Eastern St, London. The date is May 19th, that's Saturday next week.

We'll be on the bill with Breathe Out, I reccommend you show your stupid little faces and come and say hello to me. I'll say hello back.

Enjoy all the stuff.

 

Saturday, 5 May 2012

Pencils II

I got home today after having been in South London for the past few days - I saw Zoetrope play in Brixton, they were great - and found a present waiting for me on the doormat. It was a package containing copies of the first issue of Pushing Too Many Pencils, which features a drawing of me, by me. I did it with a biro, you can look at it at the previous post on this blog. The fanzine is free, visit the PTMP Facebook page to find out how to get yourself a copy.

I've been sent spares to give out to you, ask me if you want one. I'll also have some copies at the next show I'm playing (announcement to come very shortly, keep checking).

Look at the artwork on this thing, it's excellent. The first issue also comes with 2 limited edition prints and a Mowbird badge. You can't say much fairer than that.


Wednesday, 2 May 2012

Pushing Too Many Pencils



A self-portrait of mine has been featured in the fanzine Pushing Too Many Pencils. Find them on Facebook to order a copy, it's free. My drawing is below, it's called "Twenty Years (And Growing)".




Monday, 30 April 2012

More Writing


I've been scribbling again, this time for Abigail Gillibrand (my ear to the ground in the North: she keeps things ticking over for me) and her fanzine, Woodnote. I was asked to write about a band or artist that I like, so I did. I chose Sarah Johns, who I heard only recently but she's excellent, do listen to her.




The fanzine and my article will be available in May, Abi will be giving them out at Tim Burgess's book event on the 11th in Manchester. Look out for her!

Wednesday, 18 April 2012

Thursday, 12 April 2012

News

Haven't posted in too long, for which I apologise (but am not sorry - entertain yourselves, damn you).

Anyway, in case you're interested, my review of Lee Ranaldo's record is online now at Psych, have a read.

This weekend I will be returning to the studio with Tim Garratt, provided my skin clears up by then (I've caught some infection, I'm taking oxytetracycline and it's totally disgusting). We're recording something special that you will get to hear soon, if you're super nice to me.

I spent yesterday in the editing suite with my friend Peggy (who filmed this with my camera), we've been making a short film together which you might also get to see, if you're lucky.

And that's the news. Back to you.

Saturday, 31 March 2012

Vote for Central Station

Over the past couple of years as a soloist (and more recently with my backing supergroup, The Black-Eyed Wives) I've had the pleasure of playing in pubs, underground clubs, comedy clubs, gardens, tents, festival stages, churches and theatres. My favourite venue in which to play so far, and by quite a long way, has been Wrexham's Central Station at an event called ROPE, run by the inestimable Ross  Roberts.

I've played there twice now: Ross and his team have looked after my fellow musicians and me and both times have gone the extra mile to make sure that everything we've needed was provided. My favourite ROPE memory is of playing alongside The Charlatans in March 2011, when the house lights were brought up as I played and I could suddenly see hundreds of people watching me bring my set to a close.

Anyway, here's the rub: the NME are currently looking to find Britain's best small venue and if there's a worthier candidate than Central Station, I haven't heard of it. Vote here, and be sure to check the listings on the ROPE website for future shows. I'll doubtless be making an appearance there very soon.

Sunday, 25 March 2012

Band Review

The nice people at Hooting and Howling have published their review of my appearance at The Shacklewell Arms last week, they've been too kind. Read it here.


Thursday, 22 March 2012

The Revolutionary Spirit's Debut

Perhaps North Wales isn't the first place you'd look for a band bashing out memorable psych hooks and pop choruses, but Wrexham's The Revolutionary Spirit seem to have managed it OK. Their new single "Last Memories"is now available through Cool For Cats Records; listen below.



Monday, 19 March 2012

Back Into Journalism

I've started writing for fanzines again, my first review in a long while is up on Psych Zine's website. I wrote about The Men's new album, read it here.

Sunday, 11 March 2012

New Song With New Band (Video)

A video of my new backing group and me playing "The Other Side". Enjoy. Feel free to share, RT, link, whatever.

Friday, 2 March 2012

Introducing...

Those of you who diligently follow my Twitter feed will know this already (I hope you're both keeping well, by the way), but I thought I'd officially announce that I am now the leader of a sextet, featuring, from left to right...

Tim Garratt (bass guitar), Chris Sellers (keys), Noel Anderson (guitar), Samir Eskanda (drums) and Sam Davies (guitar).

Tim has been working with me in the recording studio as an engineer and producer and plays guitar and writes for Grave Errors and Pet Scenes; Chris tours with the band Cold Specks; Noel has played in various London-based groups but originally comes from Porthcawl, Wales; Samir is known for his work with the punk group Flats and Sam writes and records his own music, and also lives with my old friends in Miss Cosmos.

We've been working hard on my songs over the past couple of weeks to create new noises and will be appearing live together at The Shacklewell Arms supporting Citizens on Friday, March the 16th. I believe (though will confirm later) that the event is free entry.

Bring your friends, come and say hello to me and my new boys.

Thursday, 23 February 2012

Stuff this week

Few things:

I was featured today by AltSounds.com for the Q&A section File-O-Facts. Please leave your comments on their website.

Your favourite band is also playing this week, remember them? They're called Zoetrope, they're playing at The Lock Tavern in Camden on Sunday. It's free, I'm going and so should you.

New music news: Samir Eskanda, Tim Garratt and I have finished what will be my next single. Can't tell you any more than that just now, but we're putting together a backing group and will be appearing live very soon. If you'd like me to appear in your town, let me know (make sure you include contact details) and I'll come and see you. Could be fun.

Wednesday, 22 February 2012

CTV, Transverse


As some of you may be aware, the best collaborative collective since Yahweh and King David first jammed (otherwise known as Carter Tutti Void, the lovechild of Factory Floor vocalist/guitarist Nik Void and ex-Throbbing Gristle duo Chris Carter and Cosey Fanni Tutti) has put together a record.  It's called Transverse and is available on CD or vinyl, click here to buy. Listen to "V3" below.



I've been friends with Nik for almost a couple of years now. We've worked closely together on my music in the past: making tapes and videos at the Factory Floor studio; her work with O Genesis is well documented. She even once trusted me with her lovely Fender Jazzmaster when I didn't have my own guitar to play live shows with.

As well as being a good friend she is an inspirational and tireless artist and, I believe that, through her work with Factory Floor, her solo project, Carter Tutti Void and O Genesis, she represents everything right about independent music in 2012. As such, Nik deserves all of your support, so buy this fucking record. Now.

Sunday, 19 February 2012

You May Not Have Seen (Video)

Nik Void made this video for the demo version of my current single's AA side, "The End Of The World Is Coming". It looks spaced out and weird, but in a nice way, and you may not have seen it before. If you like it, tell Nik you like it.

Friday, 17 February 2012

Ultra Brit 2

I've been featured again by the good people of Ultra Brit, an online magazine dedicated to promoting worthwhile British music in Spain, South and Central America. Click here to view the full interview in its original context. The translated version is below.


At the end of last year we introduced you to this new London-based artist with his first single, “Jesus Christ”. ( HYPERLINK "http://www.ultrabrit.com/2011/12/12/nuevo-artista-joseph-coward/" http://www.ultrabrit.com/2011/12/12/nuevo-artista-joseph-coward/ ), a dark edgy song that highlights his Curtis like voice. 

This new release “If you want to get going, get talking (to me)” has a more Smithian, pop sound. These are the sounds that have been Coward's main  influences in life, along with literature and religion. He creates an air of mystery, some self-sufficiency and an intellectual style by quoting Bertolt Brecht and refusing to give details of his next steps in the recording studio. It reminds a little of the first statements of a young Morrissey during the rise of The Smiths as the next great Indie band in history. 

In this and other things we talk with Joseph.


- O Genesis calls you their favorite son, how is to be the first artist released by a
new label?
I was pleased that O Genesis had enough confidence in me to release my single before any other artist or group; I think it was a good decision on their part.

- After these singles and the progress in your blog with the "Hate" demo, can we expect
an album this year? What is your plan?
I'm not going to tell you! I've lots of secret plans, involving lots of secret people. As for an album, I suppose we'll just have to wait and see. Sorry I can't be more illuminating.

- On The quietus interview: “All the bands I was into, and still am, like The Smiths and
Smashing Pumpkins, were real dorks, they're not trying to be cool. Music to me is about
communication.” Can you tell me more about that idea/concept?
The idea for me is always just to be myself. I don't feel as though I'm reaching out to people, just sharing very ordinary experiences that lots of people have all the time but never really talk about. I really think that I communicate with my audience just through expressing how I truly feel about things, and knowing that they feel the same way. We're all human, after all. 

- How do you see the current music scene? Do you feel part of a scene or movement?
I don't really feel there's much of a scene at all, there are small groups of artists and bands who are friends with each other but there doesn't appear to be any cohesion or momentum behind what anyone's doing. I'm not part of a scene but I wouldn't mind if people felt they had to include my name in a list of people who play a certain way. I just sing and then go home at the end of the day, I don't care much about other bands or musicians.

- I am a huge fan of Morrissey, as are several others of the UltraBrit team. In The
Quietus interview you talk about him and I can not help comparing it with the first
notes he gave at the beginning of The Smiths. They have various things in common:
religious background, lack of false modesty, confidence in the music itself, literary
knowledge and care or imports in the lyrics ... was this a conscious choice on your
part?
Not at all, I only became a fan of the Smiths and Morrissey in my mid-late teens and I'd been writing for several years before then. Just a happy coincidence, I suppose. Or perhaps not.

- What is it like working with someone like Tim Burgess who has more than 20 years
experience in the business? How did you meet him?
Tim has been a great help to me, both as a creative partner and as a friend. I met him through Nik Void from the group Factory Floor; it was her idea for us to work together in the first place.

- This site, as you know, is for Spanish speakers. We have readers all over Latin
America and Spain. I hope the tour plans to include these countries in the future. Have
you ever visited Latin America? What image do you have of it? Could you send a specific
message to our readers, please?
I've visited Spain once but never Latin America, though I'd like to very much. I'd like to thank your readers for taking an interest in me and, more broadly, an interest in British music. I hope you become inspired to make music at home. 

Sunday, 12 February 2012

Studio Clip

Below is a video of consummate professional Tim Garratt doing his thing at Unit 6; also in this film, I am shown as the lazy person I am: smoking and keeping warm while other people record guitar parts for me. Fun, though.

Thursday, 9 February 2012

Busy

Apologies for not posting enough recently, I've been super busy in the studio with Samir Eskanda (Flats) and Tim Garratt (producer/engineer), more to follow shortly. Still frequently updating my Twitter feed so you can keep up with me on a day-to-day basis if you so wish.

I'm quite enjoying posting short films onto Twitvid so keep checking back, there should be some studio footage online within the next few days. 

Thursday, 2 February 2012

Cover Feature

My copy of the fanzine Woodnote arrived in the post today, written by Abigail Gillibrand. It features an interview with me and an article about the O Genesis label. Write to Abigail to order your copy, there are a very limited number remaining.


Wednesday, 1 February 2012

Friday, 27 January 2012

Monday, 23 January 2012

Woodnote

Writer and blogger Abigail Gillibrand recently interviewed me for her new fanzine, Woodnote, and has kindly put my face on the cover. You can request your copy by emailing Abigail or sending her a message on Twitter. Future editions will include interviews with Tim Burgess, Nik Void and Tom Caulfield.


Saturday, 21 January 2012

Rehearsal (Video)

Tim Garratt, Simon Lister and me getting ready for Wednesday's appearance with Toy at the Shacklewell Arms.

Tuesday, 10 January 2012

Me with Toy

A Facebook event has been posted for the second stage of Toy's residency at the Shacklewell Arms, also featuring Blood Music and me.

The event is free but to guarantee entry you need to pre-book tickets, you can do so by clicking here and filling in the form with your details.



Sunday, 8 January 2012

New Video for the New Single

The video for my new single, "If You Want To Get Going, Get Talking (To Me)", has arrived. It was shot at Factory Floor HQ by Nik Void and features Tim Burgess playing an invisible piano. Thanks also to Poppy Tibbetts for pressing the play button, and her camera work.

Please share this video on your blog, website or similar; I'd like as many people as possible to watch it. The embed code is posted below, just copy and paste it onto Facebook, Blogger and anywhere else you can think of. Easy! Enjoy.



< iframe width="560" height="315" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/Yl4ajZTgyt8" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen>

Tuesday, 3 January 2012

The Rev Need a Drummer

One of the best rock groups I've seen over the past 12 months, Wrexham's The Revolutionary Spirit, are in need of a drummer.

Their manager has posted the following advertisement:

"Any drummers from the Wrexham/Chester area’s looking to join a band please message me for details….. The Revolutionary Spirit are looking for someone. Must be 100% committed and willing to travel to gigs up and down the country. BBC Radio One Introducing session recorded (due to air in the next few weeks); national Gigs confirmed; debut single recorded and mastered."

Contact Ross Roberts or the group directly through their Facebook page. 

Sunday, 1 January 2012

Happy New Year

I was fortunate enough to spend part of New Year's Eve with my good friends Nik Void, Tim Burgess and Gabriel Gurnsey. Here's a short film that Nik took after having stolen my camera.



Also, Tim and the good people at O Genesis have also just finished R Stevie Moore's video for "Pop Music". It has puppets in it, which is always a bonus as far as I'm concerned.



Enjoy. Wishing you all the best for 2012, happy new year.