Monthly Archives: March 2012

Be Kind Rewind.

It’s Saturday, I have one final essay to write before the end of term, thus I am procrastinating. Standard procedure. So I’m taking a few minutes out of my obviously busy schedule to talk to you about a man, a man who has changed my life, a man who guides my every action, who makes life meaningful and wonderful.

No, I am not going to talk to you about Jesus. This man is Mos Def. And what a man he is.

Mos Def has , in my opinion, the midas touch, I will watch/listen/love everything and anything he turns his hand to. Now I could spend thousands of words expressing my love for the The New Danger album, ‘Blue Black Jack’ being my favourite. But this post is going to be dedicated to my love of his movies, in particular Be Kind Rewind ( but be sure to watch possibly one of the greatest movies of all time The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy in which he provides , as per usual, a stellar performance)

Co-star Jack Black is possibly the most annoying man in the entire world, yet for some reason, I absolutely love him. His irritating need to constantly sing and inability to stand still just seems to work.Especially in ‘Be Kind Rewind’ where his clearly ADHD tendencies provide him with the perfect skills to re-enact or should that be reinvent cult classics such as Ghost Busters. I’m not going to bore you with a paragraph of plot lines and summaries, when a well placed trailer will do the trick. But I whole heartedly implore you to watch the trailer then watch the whole movie.

The soundtrack to Be Kind Rewind is ridiculously feel good, a few silly ditties that are so catchy thanks to jaunty piano backing and Mos Defs smokey vocals, the best hands down being the cover of Fred Fisher’s ‘Your Feets Too Big’ (which you 90’s kids may recognise as the theme tune to Harry and the Hendersons). The normally abundant Youtube has failed me on this, but if you have spotify, here’s the link the entire soundtrack…

Be Kind Rewind Soundtrack

So bun off any Uni work you have to do, call in sick and spend the whole day watching Mos Def movies, starting with Be Kind Rewind and The Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy then just slowly work down his imdb page, a guaranteed good time.

Enjoy!

ps.when watching Hitchhiker’s Guide- don’t forget your towel.

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Noah and the Whale.

I have always been a massive fan of Charlie Fink and the boys, their second album ‘The First Days of Spring’ is absolutely phenomenal. So I was overjoyed to hear they were playing at the HMV Picturehouse last Tuesday, this joy was quickly replaced with despair when I realised the tickets were sold out and greedy seat-wave sellers wanted 45 quid for a single ticket. Alas I turned to my old friend Gumtree. I am under the impression (and have yet to be proven wrong) that Gumtree sells, buys and advertises pretty much everything that has ever existed, ever. And I was right, multiple emails later following a pleading post from myself, I acquired two tickets, at face value from a very nice middle-aged woman named Sharon (Sharon’s sister has bailed last-minute, her boss was in Australia and she needed to work overtime on a project that was being presented the following week – Sharon , albeit extremely lovely, was a massive over sharer). So me and the twin headed to the packed HMV Picture amongst many prepubescent cringe fan-girls and plenty of ageing hipsters. Emmy the Great supported, a great band with a great ‘sound’ but the lead singer is extremely unlikable and not at all engaging. Her attempt at ‘crowd banter’ extending to an ‘OMG its so cool you’re here’, however, their set was faultless and her live performance proved she is an exceptional talent.

Apologies for the poor quality snap, but check out the dapper attire.

On to the main act, Noah and the freaking whale. Their set was one of the best live performances I have ever seen, possibly one of the greatest gigs I’ve attended (bar Bon Iver, no one beats Justin Vernon) Playing a mixture of all three albums, they weaved in and out of emotional ballads to crowd favourites. The set was pretty damn long and felt almost tailored to me as they played every one of my faves. I was totally surprised by their stage presence, Charlie Fink is one hell of a show man, engaging and effortlessly cool. All donned tailored suits and quirky handkerchiefs, ties and braces and all have an uncanny ability to play numerous instruments, many two at a time. Tom Hobden’s fiddle skills were indescribable,he certainly is the Jimi Hendrix of the string world. I would, given the chance, see them play again and again and again. After all, who doesn’t enjoy chanting L-I-F-E-G-O-E-S-O-N with an eclectic crowd of fellow Noah fans.

So I’m attaching  the crowd pleaser that is ‘Tonight’s the kind of night’ from the newest album Last Night On Earth…

My all time favourite, despite being hugely depressing, ‘I Have Nothing’ from the First Days Of Spring album…

And, for Rach, ‘Love of an Orchestra’

Study Music, take eight.

I’m going to be that person, that person who says ‘ooh I knew them before everyone loved them’, because for once, I actually did. So hand me some cool points for this choice, as this girl is going to be the new Laura Marling/Florence Welsh-typey-folky singer of ‘2k12’. Daughter’s track ‘Youth’ from her 2011 EP ‘The Wild Youth’ is today’s glorious study track. I first saw her as a support act for Benjamin Francis Leftwich  ( an equally amazing artist) and have to be honest what first struck me was the Johnny Depp look-a-like acommpanying her on the guitar, but after that, my attention was drawn to her and she played an absolutely beautiful set, her soft vocals and rising  instrumental tracks slide her nicely in the Laura Marling category of ‘newly mainstream female folk’ but this definitely shouldn’t be a bad thing. So check her out, as she will be everywhere, but remember, ‘I liked her before she was cool’.


6 Music Obsession

I LOVE 6music, I was absolutely devastated when there was talk of the BBC cutting the entire station during its last budget cuts. Alas it made the grade and hopefully it’s here to stay. My love for 6music is mainly due to many years ago their sunday line up was the best soundtrack to GCSE homework. However, the reason I do and always will love 6music is because they introduced me to two of the best comedians on the circuit right now. Back in the days Russell Howard and Jon Richardson were little known comics, but now thanks to mock the week and 8 out of 10 cats everyone is clamouring to see their live shows, and quite rightly. Every sunday from 2007-2009, 6music provided 3 hours of inane but hilarious chat from them both and later on began producing podcasts, I am the proud owner of every one of these podcasts. They are the best medicine for an early morning journey or long train ride, and I guarantee they will make you giggle inappropriately to yourself. So, for my own sanity ( whilst writing a really boring essay) and your enjoyment I’ve uploaded one of my faves… Enjoy!

A Case of You- James Blake

I literally can’t stop listening to James Blake’s cover of Joni Mitchell’s ‘A Case of You’, it’s just beautiful, I’d hasten to say its better than the original. His eponymous album was one of my favourites of 2011, his covers are just magically, he has a knack of taking an already amazing song (E.g Feist’s ‘Limit to your love’) and making it his own, but with no detriment to the original. I’d put money on this song being snapped up for a movie soundtrack any day now.

Blueberry and Lemon Curd Cake

This recipe is ripped off the bbc good food website, so I’m not going to give it the injustice of rewriting it and attempting to make it my own. I’ve made it twice, once as a round cake and once as a loaf cake, and  it works perfectly either way. The blueberries go all gooey and jammy when they bake making the cake nice and moist, the lemon zest in the cake and the lemon icing on top give it a crackin’ kick. It’s a perfect spring/summer cake and is super easy. Its a slow cook cake, so it takes a wee while longer than normal to cook, but requires hardly any effort and is pretty fool proof! Here’s the deets…

Ingredients:

  • 175g softened butter , plus extra for greasing
  • 500ml tub Greek yogurt (you need 100ml/3.5fl oz in the cake, the rest to serve)
  • 300g jar good lemon curd (you need 2 tbsp in the cake, the rest to serve)
  • 3 eggs
  • zest and juice 1 lemon , plus extra zest to serve, if you like
  • 200g self-raising flour
  • 175g golden caster sugar
  • 200g punnet of blueberries (you need 85g/3oz in the cake, the rest to serve)
  • 140g icing sugar

Method:

  1. Heat oven to 160C/140C fan/gas 3. Grease a 2lb loaf tin and line with a long strip of baking parchment. Put 100g yogurt, 2 tbsp lemon curd, the softened butter, eggs, lemon zest, flour and caster sugar into a large mixing bowl. Quickly mix with an electric whisk until the batter just comes together. Scrape half into the prepared tin. Weigh 85g blueberries from the punnet and sprinkle half into the tin, scrape the rest of the batter on top, then scatter the other half of the 85g berries on top. Bake for 1 hr 10 mins-1 hr 15 mins until golden, and a skewer poked into the centre comes out clean.
  2. Cool in the tin, then carefully lift onto a serving plate to ice. Sift the icing sugar into a bowl and stir in enough lemon juice to make a thick, smooth icing. Spread over the top of the cake, then decorate with lemon zest and edible flowers, if you like. Serve in slices with extra lemon curd, Greek yogurt and blueberries.

Here’s a pretty poor quality photo of one of my attempts (bloody blackberry cameras are rubbish)

Enjoy!

Study Music, take seven.

Why does ‘Skins’ ruin everything? Literally everything, not only is it God-awful viewing and a massive misrepresentation of British youth, it has gone and ruined Tom Rosenthal. No I do not mean the cute Jewish Comedian from Friday Night Dinners, Tom Rosenthal, I mean Singer-songwriter extraordinaire , writer of Keep a Private Room Behind the Shop. Actually, I’m not going to say Skin’s had ruined him, that is not possible, however, it has tainted him with the horrible connection of being on such a vapid television show, however, it will introduce the masses of teenage hightop-wearing-dub-step-listening girls and boys to a truly wonderful album. The song used on the show , ‘Take care’ is pretty dramatic with Tom Yorke style vocals set to a piano backing- its pretty damn good. So try to remove any knowledge of it’s Skins connection and Enjoy it… 

But if you just can’t shake the knowledge, try a non-skins-tainted track, try this track by Perfume Genius, called ‘Normal Song’. The only information you need to know is that he supported Beirut on tour- nothing else needs saying.