29 September 2003Prolific
Essentially a one-man-band - Stephin Merritt - they are certainly intriguing. Their first album Wasps' Nests (1995) which was released on Factory Too is still available in the USA on Polygram. The second album, Hyacinths and Thistles (2000), is also still in print and, like the first one, is highly rated.
Merritt has brought in a plethora of guest singers to sing his material including artists as diverse as Gary Numan, Anna Domino, Bob Mould, Clare Grogan and Marc Almond to mention but a few. As well as The Sixths, the prolific Merritt also founded and has recorded with Future Bible Heroes and Magnetic Fields.
Tickets available from ticketweb priced 12 pounds.
28 September 2003Friday morning / Sunday evening playlist
25 September 2003Hung Drawn And Quartered
The event, called Hung Drawn and Quartered is to take place in London's Shoreditch area on Thursday October 2, which will encompass music, film and art at around 17 venues. The event's official website is good for even more info [pop-up alert!].
In Andrew's words, expect a "shed-load of bleepy Warp and Rephlex acts, and many of the Hoxton usual suspects". Well worth investigating. Drop me a line if you're going.
24 September 2003Durutti date
Will be making the trip up to my old stomping ground in a combined 600+ mile football (Hartlepool FC v QPR) and music extravaganza.
The Academy 3 is also know as the Hop and Grape and according to the University of Manchester Union website is "the smallest of the Union's venues: a bar, meeting room and a live music venue, it is located on the top floor of the Union Building. The Hop and Grape hosts gigs from smaller, or up-and-coming bands, as well as societies' socials and one-off club nights. It's the perfect place to catch new talent on the way up. Many would argue that this is where the real gigs are played before the intimacy is lost."
23 September 2003Embarrassment of riches
Glad to hear that the awesome solo guitar version of Albatross previously heard at the Lewes Guitar Festival in 2002 has made a reappearance as a second encore. If anyone has any pics let me know.
This all amounted to a great excuse to add Ben Kelly to the list of Factory-related designers.
16 September 2003Hopper help!
If anyone has any up to date info on Rachel's current activities and where the rest of the band are now, please let me know.
That is all I have to say except that Ridiculous Day is just an absolutely incredible track.
14 September 2003Sunday Morning Playlist
12 September 2003Design Council
Ben Kelly is also the architect of Fac 51 The Haçienda, Dry 201 and the Fac 251 Factory HQ.
In the movie 24 Hour Party People, Ben Kelly is portrayed in a very small cameo by Trevor Johnson (fellow Factory designer of Johnson/Panas fame). Thanks to Andrew James for the tip-off about this event.
10 September 2003Who is the best graphic designer working today?
To commemorate this occasion Creative Review asked Saville to "reveal objects inspirational to him". As hinted at previously, there will also be a second project / exhibition to follow-up on the Peter Saville Show which will be called Estate.
Read the full report on the talk.
08 September 2003In The City
Has this label actually ever released anything?
05 September 2003Heavy rotation
The Weather Prophets - Diesel River (includes the seminal indie jingle-jangle track 'Almost Prayed' (Creation); Spiritualized - 'Lazer Guided Melodies'; Bob Dylan - 'Best of Bob Vol I (cdr)'; Teenage Fanclub - 'Bandwagonesque' (Creation); Sabres of Paradise - 'Sabresonic' (Warp); Aphex Twin - 'Windowlicker'
03 September 2003The Peter Saville Talk
Our hostess for the evening, one of the curators of the Peter Saville Show explained why this was in fact the second talk and not the first. The first one had taken place on Thursday 28 August which was the night of the big London blackout and many people had failed to make it. One chap apparently walked from Turnham Green and managed to make the last 20 minutes!
Looking as suave as ever in his trademark white jeans and black t-shirt, Peter Saville explained that when he was a young graduate back in the Seventies, he was not so much obsessed with music but the freedom to work that exists in the music industry. He calls the situation he found himself in with Factory Records "unrealistic" because most young graduate designers would have joined a studio and pursued a more conventional career. Peter found himself working for a record company that was never a record company. He says that Factory never functioned as a small business and that no decision taken in 14 years was based on profitability! But he conceded that it was Factory's ultimate disregard for profit that proved to be its downfall.
As Mr Saville had already given one talk last week (an extra one arranged after the first one but occurring before the first one, if you understand what I mean) he decided not to do a formal lecture but held a question and answer session instead.
Many great analyses, explanations and anecdotes ensued, too many to go into here - you'll have to wait for the full breakdown - but suffice to say that it will mention Trevor Key Letrasetting the back cover of Tubular Bells, "spooky typographical obsessives", Yohji Yamamoto, "Spice Girls Syndrome" and Kraftwerk. Coming soon.
Post punk cult band The Names emerged in the winter of 1977-1978 as The Passengers, gathering immediate attention on the local Brussels scene. In 1979, after a series of successful gigs and a crucial step forward opening for Magazine, they recorded their first E.P. ("Spectators Of Life") and attracted the interest of prominent label Factory Records in Manchester.
Their first British studio session (at Stockport's Strawberry Studio) produced the single "Nightshift" / "I Wish I Could Speak Your Language (Fac 29). Receiving enthusiastic reviews in the UK and abroad, it marked the start of a long and fruitful collaboration with producer Martin Hannett. The album "Swimming" followed as well as more singles, including "Calcutta" and "The Astronaut".
- extract from the official website biography