Tuesday, July 25, 2006

how was your weekend?

Mine was somewhat stressful, actually. Came up to London on Saturday night to DJ at International Hi-fi, only to find that all the trains were completely screwed due to a lightning strike on the trackside (eeeeep!). That was my cue to sit on a sweltering Thameslink train (all the Southern services had been cancelled) without any air-con, as we dawdled up to London in about 2 hours. Gah.
Sunday at least brought with it a chance to eat BBQ and drink Scrumpy: without that i'd have just given up on the entire weekend.
This week then? John Foxx on Thursday night at the Scala, with Palace Fires at the Metro before that...there's the launch of Xfm's new club night, The Weekender, at the Islington Academy on Friday night, oh and Mumm-Ra and TheLongcut at Dingwalls tonight....

Thursday, July 20, 2006

OK people....

If you go to the Aberfeldy page on myspace, you can DOWNLOAD "Whatever Turns You On" the title track of their new CD, which has been on constant rotation here at Westway Towers for the past fortnight. It's just a wonderful slice of shimmering pop genius: I can virtually guarantee that your life will be better for owning it.
And if you've got a spare quarter of an hour, I can also implore you to check this out: it's a 15 minute piece of photo-journalism about the Grime scene in East London.

Thank God for that....

The temperature must have dropped about 10-12 degrees overnight, it's still humid, but no longer stultifyingly opressive.
Have yourselves some Sun Ra.
While we're on the subject of mp3's, i've started doing a link on the show to "Download Of The Day" so i'm guessing that some of the people who get the daily email may well stumble across this humble little blog. If so, then welcome. Say hello in the comments :)

Wednesday, July 19, 2006


It's hot. Damned hot
Anyway, it's been a few days, so what have I been doing? A quick trawl of the boot sales on Sunday turned up some great old Balearic vinyl : "Afro Dizzy Act", that sort of thing...So Sunday night saw me at the decks, pretending I was back at Shoom :)
Sunday was also a time for swimming: nice and late in the evening, just when the sun dips towards the horizon is exactly the right time to swim in the sea at Brighton...The water may be FREEZING when you get in, but after a while you don't really notice (or maybe it's just that you can't feel your extremities any more)
This week has been ridiculously hot: nights filled with cold showers; days spent wilting on the Tube. But there's quite a (cliche alert) Blitz spirit to the whole thing: we struggle on, secretly proud of ourselves for coping.
Monday was Palace Fires at the Barfly, they were excellent: assured, languid and relaxed, yet focused completely on what they were doing. I spent most of the gig trying to work out who they reminded me of (with little success);at the end of the night I told Steve (guitarist) that fragments reminded me of The Stars Of Heaven (and BTW, ignore that review, they were an AWESOME band) only for Steve to tell me he loved TSOH, making him the only other fan of the band I've met in 15 years.
Yesterday night was The Sleepy Jackson at the Scala: he's a cocky little bastard and no mistake about it...But it's no understatement to say that Luke Steele is a genius. Last night he veered between feeback excess (including some heroic guitar-tossing antics and lots of windmilling axe-hero shapes) and impossibly frail episodes that counterbalanced the squall of noise and ideas that always swarm around his head. There were a couple of moments which bordered on the spiritual: I could feel my spirits rise in tandem with the goosebumps on my arms. Can't just have been the cider, can it?

Sunday, July 16, 2006

Tim's 40th.........

And also, I went back to the land of my childhood, to my best mate Tim's 40th birthday party. Dj-ed at the bash (obv.) and met loads of people I hadn't seen in years (sometimes, up to 20 years!) The memories came so thick and fast I had to stop and catch my breath.


Well, I was going to tell you about wireless....And how much fun it was...And the people I met, and the things I did...But then I did this festival and it put a lot of it into perspective. It was great to give a little bit back for once: to support kids who have a hard time in whatever they're doing: kids to whom music represents a real form of escape, something to aspire to, something to throw all their energy into. I met a lot of people who feed off the energy of the music business, as opposed to people who end up dragged into a vacuum of cynicism. I've got an awful lot out of music over the last 15 years, and now? It's payback time.

Wednesday, July 05, 2006

Iain's Wireless.... Part 1.

So, how was it for me?
Great, really. Another year for Wireless (its second) and the organisation, as ever, was impeccable. Peoples main gripe with the festival seems to be that it's somewhat corporate... But the money generated from sponsorship seems to mean that it runs like clockwork, where's the problem in that? Seeing as the first people I bumped into were Michael and Emily Eavis, both with big grins on their faces and clearly enjoying the day, I'd say it's not really an issue (and hey, Glasto has its fair share of big-business involvement now)
So, Wednesday. A beautiful day, bright sunshine, a cold beer and some DJ-ing in the O2 bubble to start the day off. As you'd imagine, I gave the crowd a judicious slice of the Sukpatch CD, as well as a couple of gems from the new Trunk Records compilation "Fuzzy Felt Folk" From there on, the day began a course that was to become familiar over the next few days: namely running between the three main stages, announcing bands. Went to the myspace stage and bumped into White Rose Movement, as I was with Zeb, an old compadre from the days of The Pretenders, his bro Finn is singer in the WRM. Also chatted to Sean McCluskey and his charges Cazals: who put on one of the shows of the day. Ran down to the Xfm stage (pushing to check out the Raconteurs on the main stage) to stand by the monitor desk while Bob Mould was playing. Being that close to one of your heroes when they're playing "Celebrated Summer" was quite awe-inspiring.
Once all of my commitments had been honoured, I obviously started on a course of serious drinking: I left the festival early, about 10-ish, but made the mistake of having a nightcap (or three) when I got back home. Cue: a broken night's sleep and a bleary start to the next day.