Archive for September, 2009

30
Sep
09

Everyday is Like Sunday, Except for Blue Monday and Ruby Tuesday, and…Well, Friday I’m in Love: Weekly Mix #83

post punk mix

This post is a couple of weeks late, but considering I was very ill last week, I think you’ll forgive me. Whatever coldette I had a few weeks ago was nothing compared to this all-out attack on my immune system. It just stopped short of the lung searing bronchitis of a couple years ago. Nonetheless, I only allowed myself to miss roughly one day of work (the illness guilt my mother instilled in me as a child is still there). I’m really starting to believe I have an immunodeficiency disorder what with my chronic allergies and seemingly high risk of infection. If I had been around even a hundred years ago, I probably would’ve been either dead by now or in a sanitorium. Anyhow, I’m on antibiotics, which make me quite horribly nauseous, and I can only hope my body doesn’t turn against me again for a few more months.

It’s been a really long time since I posted a post-punk mix – in fact, the first and last one was way back at Weekly Mix #2. Of course there’s been tons of post-punk featured here since, but just not all in an explicit compilation.

Also, I’ll try to get a couple of posts out this week (as you can tell, I still haven’t worked out how to keep both the blog and my regular work going at the same time). Once again, I’ve been intending to do reviews of about four or five albums, but the time or the brain just never seems to be there.

This one’s called A New Messthetic.

Home is the Range – Comsat Angels

Complications – Killing Joke

A Song From Under the Floorboards – Magazine

Nostalgia (7″ Version) – The Chameleons

Words Fail Me – The Sound

Dark Companion – Tuxedomoon

It’s Her Factory – Gang of Four

Concrete Jungle – The Specials

This is Not a Love Song (Remix) – Public Image Ltd.

Twist Run Repulsion – Simple Minds

Messthetics – Scritti Politti

The Modern Dance – Pere Ubu

Dead Pop Stars – Altered Images

Playground Twist – Siouxsie & the Banshees

Only After Dark – Human League

Thorn of Crowns – Echo & the Bunnymen

Architecture and Morality – Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark

Strange – Wire

Variation of Scene – Josef K

New Dawn Fades – Joy Division

18
Sep
09

This is the First Time: Keane at the Burton Cummings Theatre

Chaplin Close Up

All right, I admit it. I like Keane. Do I love Keane? Not really. I suppose it’s actually been quite some time since I last really listened to them. When Hopes and Fears came out and I first heard them on the radio while living in the East Midlands, I thought they were a nice, gentle sort of band, and perhaps they will forever be sentimentally linked to that particularly summer in England. Then they released Under the Iron Sea while I was living in Cardiff, and I remember being a bit surprised at the turn to a fuller sound of synths, and dare I say, an occasionally rockier tempo. I appreciated Tim Rice-Oxley’s frustrated sentiments on Is It Any Wonder and I still very much enjoy Atlantic and Hamburg Song (the latter of which revealed that singer, Tom Chaplin, wasn’t exactly as gentle and innocent as he looked and was slowly destroying the band). But I was definitely drifting from the band, especially since there were always more musical discoveries to be made, which were far more interesting. I grew away from Keane so much that when they released Perfect Symmetry last year, I didn’t take much notice. However, then I heard Spiralling, and I thought it was definitely another considerable step away from Hopes and Fears, and I also happened to think it was a lovely pop song. The rest of the album, sadly, didn’t quite live up to Spiralling – in fact, a lot of it seemed like back-pedalling. Thus, my relationship to Keane seems to be punctuated by pleasant surprise and tepid disappointment, but I still thought it would be worth seeing them live when they finally made an appearance in Winnipeg. And, admittedly, there’s nothing groundbreaking about Keane’s music, live or otherwise, but I was once again pleasantly surprised at how much fun I had and how much Chaplin seems to have grown into his frontman role.

I endured the abysmal teenybop band, Lights, who opened for Keane, only because I thought I could stay up front as I did with the Franz Ferdinand gamble. It failed miserably this time. The security guards were being particularly protective of the boys from Sussex (piano music may just make people lose their cookies), so it took quite some time before I could wheedle my way in front of a floor amp (I had a chuckle about the fact the roadies had stuck masking tape along the edges of the amp and a sign that said “Stay Inside”). The show began with Chaplin on guitar (a new development as of the last record) as they blew through The Lovers Are Losing for their opening track. It quickly became apparent that the band was genuinely shocked that this many people knew their music in an ostensibly god-forsaken corner of the world like Winnipeg. And that the theatre was packed for their first show here. Chaplin thanked the audience over and over again, and at one point, Rice-Oxley looked like he was going to cry. In turn, I discovered that Chaplin doesn’t look quite as much like a lollipop head in person (nor as much like a hybrid of an eight-year-old’s head spliced onto a grown man’s body as I thought he would). He likes dramatic gestures a lot, but they’re kind of endearing, and I also quite like watching Rice-Oxley lose himself in his playing, his leg pumping furiously.

Chaplin Guitar

They then played Everbody’s Changing and Bend and Break from their debut and A Bad Dream from Under the Iron Sea 9which featured Chaplin on a keyboard opposite to Rice-Oxley) before heading into newer territory again with You Haven’t Told Me Anything. Before things could get too slow, I was glad that they went into This Is The Last Time (which inexplicably was my favourite song from their first album) and Spiralling. Then the rest of the band exited the stage to leave Chaplin alone with an acoustic guitar to play Playing Along – it was a brave move and it worked well enough. The slow pace continued with Try Again and You Don’t See Me (the latter of which Chaplin deemed the most beautiful song Keane had ever written and dedicated to the audience). The tempo briefly increased for Is It Any Wonder before developing into a rather passionate performance of Perfect Symmetry. Strangely enough, Chaplin seemed to think Canada was quite environmentally-friendly and thus could better appreciate the sentiments of the song. It was the track that brought Chaplin the furthest off the stage – he actually stepped with his neon pink, yellow and gold sneakers onto the amp directly in front of me (he dutifully stayed inside the tape lines, mind). The set proper wrapped up with crowd favourites Somewhere Only We Know and Crystal Ball. During Somewhere Only We Know, Chaplin turned the vocals over to the crowd, and fortunately, a very respectable amount of people were able to sing along.

Rice Oxley

In a way, I enjoyed the low-impact exercise of the show – there was no breathless jumping or smashing of appendages. Having said that, it still was nowhere near as sedate as I would have expected a Keane show to be. There was very much a palpable energy in the theatre, which was consistently stoked by Chaplin’s cajoling gestures and requests to keep the cheers going. There was plenty of banter from Chaplin as he conversed with the crowd, including the typical disbelief at Winnipeg winter weather (he found it difficult to believe that it could go down to -52 Celsius here – apparently a roadie had recorded such a fact on a wall backstage). At one point, someone screamed out the ridiculously obvious point that Chaplin had an accent, and yet another added “It’s sexy.” I, for one, hardly think of Chaplin as sexy, and his reply was, “That’s nice because people back at home make fun of my accent.” I can only imagine. However, the teenage girls next to me definitely attempted to pull Chaplin off the stage by his sweaty hand, and I’m sure he appreciated it. I’ve also never seen someone throw out so many guitar picks into the crowd.

The encore thankfully included Atlantic, and oddly enough, I wasn’t surprised when they whipped out their version of Under Pressure (mainly because I was wracking my brain for what other high-energy pieces the band had). The encore ended with the interesting choice of Bedshaped off the first album; the show went gently into the night. Keane puts on a highly entertaining pop show, and as I’ve usually found with British bands playing Winnipeg, they were hugely appreciative of the audience’s enthusiasm and mere presence. It wasn’t the most exciting, nor the most memorable of the gigs I’ve been to, but it left me feeling happy. And sometimes that’s all you need.

This Is The Last Time – Keane

Atlantic – Keane

18
Sep
09

Bloody Bizarre: The 2010 MTV VMAs

Last year, I used the unfortunate blight that is the MTV VMAs to rant about the state of music television. This year, it turns out, has produced fodder of a different kind. Sure, I could still rant about the lack of quality in music videos and MTV, but that’s not really top of mind after viewing the awards show on Sunday night. I’m not quite certain what it was that made this year’s show so surreal; it could have been a combination of the incessant Twittering and texting running along the bottom of my screen (I watched it via MuchMusic in Canada, but it could have very well been happening everywhere), or the long line of live airing debacles (the Kanye West outburst didn’t even seem quite as strange as the general malaise and/or bewilderment throughout the rest of the show).

The show kicked off with yet another Michael Jackson tribute (I had to watch just to see what the institution that really created him would come up with), and it was…boring. For an artist who based most of his career on spectacle, the performance was bizarrely pedestrian. I had expected several celebrities to make an appearance (hey, people like Usher and Justin Timberlake made a living off imitating him), but instead it was a long line of generic dancers doing a few of Jackson’s routines against a backdrop of the music videos. And these dancers weren’t even all that good – during the gravity-defying leaning move at the end of Smooth Criminal, one of the dancers ended up being rather conspicuously bent over like a coat hanger instead. Then Janet Jackson made her appearance during Scream in order to dance in-sync with her brother on the screen behind her – she fell out of step somewhere and ended up lagging slightly behind like a satellite feed. The quality control on the man’s memory was about as good as the quality control on his public image during the last fifteen years.

Then there was the odd, less-than-exciting cover version of We Will Rock You by Katy Perry and Joe Perry, which inexplicably summoned Russell Brand to appear as host for the second year in a row. (I suppose the fact the MTV VMAs never seem to have a specific theme to run with contributes to the lack of coherence in these shows.) There are times that I find Russell Brand funny. There are times when I really don’t (loads of puerile sex jokes). This was of the second variety, which is wearing very thin. He, himself, seemed out of step more than usual (granted certain types of British humour don’t always make much of an impression on North American audiences, especially of the award show type, but Brand seemed to lose the plot a whole lot more than last year). His one decent comment was about American health care, and then he seemed to be relegated to the fringes for the rest of the night.

And then the part of the show that interested me the most was the Lady GaGa performance, which you can view above. Essentially, she parodied a tragic opera, which saw her strung up and bloody by the end. Perhaps what interested me even more than the performance itself was the reaction from MuchMusic VJ, Devon Soltendieck, who was manning the airtime before and after the live feed would cut in from New York. He stood there as though someone had just ran past him and slapped him in the face with a fish. Then he inserted the remark, “When is too much too much?” I found this a bit puzzling. Too much? MTV Awards? Without trying to be too punny, the comment kind of hung there.

I’d be the last person to rush to Lady GaGa’s defence about anything (I don’t listen to her music if I can help it), but there’s no doubt that her performance was a spectacle in the spirit of pushing boundaries of taste and adolescent rebellion, which I had assumed MTV always stood for. She made this year’s awards show memorable, and when, let’s face it, the majority of the music MTV promotes is disposable pop, the way it is performed comes to matter even more. We’re not expecting groundbreaking music or art on MTV; we’re expecting a channel that parents would cringe at, and style prevailing over substance. I’m not even particularly interested whether Lady GaGa’s performance represented her view of paparazzi and privacy; to me, it was a conversation piece that stood out from the other very standardized, predictable acts (oh, Green Day, you’re so dangerous inviting fans on stage with you). From what I gather, Lady GaGa has seemingly attracted loads of publicity for her costumes, her performances, her bisexuality, and the rather fascinating accusations of hermaphroditism. Russell Brand made reference to the latter charges in a set-up for one of his opening jokes, questioning why a woman couldn’t be strong, successful and sexually aggressive without being called a hermaphrodite. Obviously Brand’s comment simplifies things, but it does pose a good question regarding gender, sexuality, performance and social taboos, including suicide, disability and insanity.

Why did Soltendieck, amongst many others, including anti-suicide advocates, find Lady GaGa’s performance so unsettling and/or offensive, but don’t mind rap artists glorifying violence and sexism, including a chainsaw-wielding Eminem (who looked very subdued during this year’s VMAs)? Lady GaGa was different because she portrayed violence turned inward, not outward. Another thing that struck me about Lady GaGa’s gory performance was the implication of insanity – she was wholly absorbed in her role, right down to the mad, vacant eyes. Mental health issues can scare people much more than violence; ever since the seventeenth century, madness has either been treated as a freakish spectacle or as something to be institutionalized, literally sectioned from the rest of society. She also brought disability into it by supporting herself with crutches and having a girl spastically dancing in a wheelchair. To most, those things don’t belong on the stage at a pop awards show. Nor amongst sexily-dressed dancers. Is it allowed to sexualize disability? It makes you question what society deems appropriate where.

I also wonder why it is completely okay for Katy Perry to prance about in scant clothing singing about kissing girls and liking it, but Lady GaGa gets branded a she-man. I think it’s because Perry stays within the acceptable boundaries of gender and sexuality; she’s transparent and non-threatening, she still dresses like a pop tart pin-up should and kisses girls to titillate others, she’s an object, not a subject. Gender is a performance; in fact, identity itself is a performance. Lady GaGa represents an exaggeration of that truth and a stubborn refusal to stop performing. It’s why she was so offputting to Jonathan Ross months ago on his chat show; her facade never broke. People focus on the outrageous costumes and stage shows and often quite brutally attack her gender and sexuality because they find her challenging and/or disturbing; it’s easier to reduce her to a caricature than deal with someone who will not play everyone else’s game. I suppose she didn’t write a song called Poker Face for nothing.

Sexy antics are easy and not so provocative – rolling around in a wedding dress just doesn’t mean much anymore, nor do lesbian kisses between heterosexual women. I don’t find what Lady GaGa did very bizarre, but I do find the reactions to it to be quite strange, indeed. I have to give it to her – Lady GaGa actually found a way to shock the masses in a world where nothing supposedly shocks. When the Michael Jackson tribute didn’t deliver, she did.

A Strange Day – The Cure

Is It Really So Strange? – The Smiths

13
Sep
09

Everyday is Like Sunday, Except for Blue Monday and Ruby Tuesday, and…Well, Friday I’m in Love: Weekly Mixes #81 and #82

Breathless

It’s been an extremely long week (so long, in fact, that it became two weeks), and I’m still feeling a little crabby because I came down with a cold last weekend in the midst of a heatwave in a house with no air conditioning. A few days later, I ended up with some extremely vomitous backpain (if this is me at 26, I may as well call it quits at 30). I’m also just feeling bogged down with work, so I’m going to do a cheer up mix. Frankly, I despise people who tell me to cheer up or smile more – the only people who smile all the time are idiots. Or lobotomized. I also can’t stand it when people say “Think positive” – I can feel the bile rise to the back of my throat as I read the trite shite (not to mention it should be the adverb “positively”). It’s almost, but not quite, as annoying as a former co-worker who used to tell me to buck up. So, needless to say, this mix isn’t going to feature songs like the deluded Don’t Worry, Be Happy; if anything, these songs are comforting even in some of their sadder moments, especially the commiserating classic, Sit Down by James (I’m happy to bring you the extended Rough Trade version, which I initially downloaded from JC over at the excellent The Vinyl Villain), and other songs that make me feel better, including a guilty pleasure from my high school days, Pluto’s Goodbye Girl, some fizzy synthpop, and The June Brides’ Josef’s Gone, which I’m convinced partly inspired the melody for Motorcycle Emptiness. I suppose this is really a commiserating sort of mix rather than an all-out cheer up, but all of these songs seem to get me breathing normally again. Whereas songs like Breathe by Faith Hill can actually make me feel like I’m having an asthma attack. This mix is called Everybody Hurts.

Whenever I feel blue, I start breathing again. – L. Frank Baum

Sit Down (Rough Trade Version) – James

Sometimes I Scare Children – The Kid

The Number One Song in Heaven – Sparks

Take On Me (Extended Mix) – a-ha

Bizarre Love Triangle – New Order

I Don’t Feel Like Dancin’ – Scissor Sisters

Magic Game – Sliimy

This Charming Man (New York Vocal) – The Smiths

The Goodbye Girl – Pluto

Little By Little – The Wannadies

Heimdalsgate Like a Promethean Curse – Of Montreal

Tear Garden – IAMX

The Night Starts Here – Stars

Half Way to Crazy – The Jesus & Mary Chain

Josef’s Gone – The June Brides

Higher Grounds – Cats On Fire

The Man Who Took On Love (And Won) – The Low Miffs and Malcolm Ross

If You Need Someone – Field Mice

No Tomorrow – The Boyfriends

Down the Dip – Aztec Camera

numbers

And because I realize my blogging has been inexcusably sporadic of late, here’s a second mix to make up for some of the lack. This one is inspired by Rol over at the eternally entertaining Sunset Over Slawit, where he has been counting down lists of songs with numbers in the titles. So, here is a smattering of numerically-inclined songs (I have a feeling that I will be returning to this theme again in the future). I will try my hardest to get at least a couple of posts out this week. This one’s called Countdown.

In-Joke For One – Fosca

Three and Nine – Roxy Music

Three Cheers For Our Side – Orange Juice

The Four Platitudes (A Bridge Song) – Parenthetical Girls

Eleven Executioners – Momus

Six Different Ways – The Cure

Seven – Fever Ray

Thirty Frames a Second – Simple Minds

Two Divided By Zero – Pet Shop Boys

Eight Flew Over, One Was Destroyed – Mew

Five Ten Fiftyfold – Cocteau Twins

One Thousand Reasons – The Sound

Twenty Four Hours – Joy Division

Sixteen Days – Modern English

Low Five – Sneaker Pimps

Thirteen Days – Sibrydion

Dozen Wicked Words – Longpigs

The Eighteenth Emergency – Butcher Boy

Anthems For a Seventeen-Year-Old Girl – Broken Social Scene

Ten Seconds to Midnight – The Divine Comedy

06
Sep
09

In the Dark of the Matinée: Franz Ferdinand at The Burton Cummings Theatre

Kapranos

My vindication has been three years in the making. Ever since I first missed out on tickets for Franz Ferdinand in 2006 (aka the Franz Ferdinand-Death Cab For Cutie Debacle – for further details read here), I’ve been bitter. Well, the bitterness has dissipated somewhat over the years (after all, Franz Ferdinand aren’t the Manics or IAMX), but when I heard the foot-stomping Glaswegians were coming back to Winnipeg, to the same theatre, this fall, I made sure I had a ticket. And thanks to my newly acquired skills of online ticket buying (including making sure I was actually at my computer at 10:00AM when the tickets went on sale and didn’t keep hitting refresh rather than wait), I managed a sixth row floor ticket. Not too shabby. However, being the ungrateful human that I am, when I actually settled down into my sixth row centre seat, I started working out the logistics of getting to the stage before Franz Ferdinand played. It wasn’t looking so hot, especially since I was hemmed in on both sides while the first two rows had much more immediate access to the small floor space in front of the stage. I remember having leaped over two rows of seating for Muse a few years back, but no longer am I as spry and vaulting five rows seemed impossible…without a pole anyway. I, then, hit upon a rather simple, but possibly effective strategy: get up there during the opening band (which happened to be the excellent Montreal band Think About Life – highly recommended).

Before you point out how mentally deficient I am, I will explain why this may not have worked. In the past, security has shunted people back to their seats after an opener played (I remember this happened for The Arcade Fire – although I managed to perform my invisibility spell through my mad ninja skills and never went back to my seat like others did). And if they did decide to send people back, this whole strategem would seem in vain. However, I took a gamble and joined the very small crowd at the front during Think About Life’s last song (their set was criminally short). The gamble paid off as soon after, security closed off the “pit” with me right against the floor amp. Still being rather ungrateful, I realized I had placed myself next to some of the most irritating girls in the world (one of whom couldn’t stop looking at her own reflection in her compact and kept arguing with security when she wanted to sit on the amp). Fate was still on my side as a security guard muscled into position right against the stage and forced those girls back, well behind me. And then, at about 9:15PM the show commenced…

A show, indeed. Admittedly, over the past few years, I’ve become less excited about Kapranos and Co. – the second album just didn’t do much for me apart from Do You Want To?, and while I’ve been enjoying their latest, Tonight, I wasn’t sure if I would still be a bit disappointed (granted, I hadn’t quite listened to Tonight enough to make a firm opinion). As I often am, I was proven wrong. Loudly. The best word to describe the show was unrelenting. There was absolutely no break for the audience or the band – the closest was when they played the arguably slower song Walk Away. The rest was a cardiac-arrest-inducing-dance-rock fusion that didn’t let up for an hour and a half.

McCarthy

Against a backdrop of the band’s stylized heads, which were consistent with their website aesthetic, they began the show with Bite Hard before quickly moving into one of my favourites, The Dark of the Matinée. With the alacrity of the music during the chorus, it really seemed as though we were hastily being dragged through endless corridors and factories, and the one-time movie theatre we were witnessing this show in made the song all the more present. It could have been partially because I was on the floor for the first time in quite some time, or the fact that all of Franz Ferdinand’s best songs are fast, or that the entire sold-out theatre was clearly up for it, but I was definitely the most winded and bashed up I’ve been at a show for this year. As per usual, my flailing knees made contact with the amp, producing nasty bruises, and I was a euphoric sweaty mess by the end of it. The set was pretty heavy on their debut album’s songs, which I was very happy about, and featured older favourites like This Fire, Tell Her Tonight, 40′, and Take Me Out. Perhaps Franz Ferdinand realized that their sophomore album just wasn’t as good as the other two. I remember one particular moment where I realized I was actually witnessing a live version of Take Me Out and it felt like I and the rest of the crowd were jumping in synchronized slow motion. In addition to Bite Hard, they also played No You Girls, What She Came For and Ulysses from the latest album. No You Girls is another one of those trademark Franz Ferdinand songs built for dance parties, and it got the audience frenzied.

Alex Kapranos and Nick McCarthy were at the forefront, as is the norm, the former often stretching out his arms like a plaid-clad messiah, involving the audience in numerous call-and-answers and commanding the audience to “rise,” and the latter often stepping out onto the amp in front of me with his stylish white shoes, swinging his guitar in sharp, high arcs from side to side, and shredding his guitar in the audience’s faces. They often met each other at centrestage or back at the face-to-face synthesizers; they also took turns climbing the amp stacks. At one point at the end of the show proper, during Outsiders, the entire band converged around the drumkit and picked up sticks and other percussion instruments to create a rhythmic fury. The trio of Ulysses, 40′ and Outsiders was a fantastic ride of alternating slow-burning-churning funk and sharp guitar riffs. And through it all, the acoustics were great from my vantage point, hearing every low, laconic, crooned note from Kapranos. And once again, there was a stage-stormer, a girl who leapt on stage and hugged Kapranos before jumping back into the pit (let’s hope she didn’t get a papercut).

Kapranos and McCarthy

The five-song encore, including Darts of Pleasure, Turn It On, Michael, Jacqueline, and Lucid Dreams, was one of the longest I’ve ever heard from anyone. I really enjoyed the ten-minute-plus jam of Lucid Dreams, fully appreciating the meandering interlude of synthesizers and drum machines, which made McCarthy and Kapranos, who were intently hunched over their respective keyboards, look like a Scottish Kraftwerk. The constant shift in melody and rhythm kept me slightly off-balance and sometimes in a droning trance. And to end proceedings, the band did their standard exit strategy for the tour, meaning each member drops out of Lucid Dreams and leaves one by one. At least it seemed standard until Nick McCarthy decided to leap stage right, gingerly stepping from amp stack to amp stack before neatly scaling the wall and hauling himself over the second-storey side balcony. It was a memorable moment, and thankfully not a catastrophic one (I believe I would have been in his direct flight path if he fell).

As with many bands I’ve seen in concert, Franz Ferdinand is best consumed live. My excitement has waned over listening to the actual albums over the years, but when they perform them live, there’s a whole new energy and freshness to these songs. I could feel every jab of angular guitar like a shot of adrenaline and let the heart-jarring vibrations of grooving bass and synths saw through me just as Kapranos allowed the buzz to shake him in one full-body-vibrating moment on stage. This gig reminded me how much I actually do enjoy Franz Ferdinand and their down-to-earth abandon and democratic hedonism. And when Kapranos mentioned the fact they had been in this theatre in Winnipeg three years ago, I didn’t even wince.

The Dark of the Matinée – Franz Ferdinand

Lucid Dreams – Franz Ferdinand




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Gigs Attended

Arcade Fire w/ Bell Orchestre + Wolf Parade (2005)

Arctic Monkeys w/ Reverend and the Makers (2007)

Austra w/ Young Galaxy + Tasseomancy (2011)

Big Audio Dynamite (2011)

Billy Bragg w/ Ron Hawkins (2009)

Billy Idol w/ Bif Naked (2005)

Bloc Party w/ Hot Hot Heat (2009)

Buzzcocks w/ The Dollyrots (2010)

Damo Suzuki (2012)

David Bowie w/ The Polyphonic Spree (2004)

Diamond Rings w/ PS I Love You + The Cannon Bros. (2011)

Diamond Rings w/ Gold & Youth (2012)

Dragonette w/ Ruby Jean & the Thoughtful Bees (2009)

Frank Turner w/ The Cavaliers (2010)

Frank Turner w/ Into It Over It + Andrew Jackson Jihad (2011)

Franz Ferdinand w/ Think About Life (2009)

Gang of Four w/ Hollerado (2011)

Good Shoes w/ The Moths + The Envelopes (2007)

Hot Hot Heat w/ The Futureheads + Louis XIV (2005)

IAMX w/ closethuman (2007)

IAMX w/ Coma Soft + The Hourly Radio (2007)

Interpol (2007)

Janelle Monae w/ Roman GianArthur (2012)

Joel Plaskett Emergency w/ Frank Turner (2012)

Jonathan Richman (2011)

Keane w/ Lights (2009)

Lou Reed w/ Buke and Gass (2011)

Manic Street Preachers w/ Fear of Music (2007)

Manic Street Preachers w/ Bear Hands (2009)

Manic Street Preachers at Wanaja Festival (2011)

Mother Mother w/ Old Folks Home (2009)

Mother Mother w/ Whale Tooth (2011)

Mother Mother w/ Hannah Georgas (2012)

MSTRKRFT w/ Felix Cartal (2008)

Muse (2004)

Nine Inch Nails w/ Death From Above 1979 + Queens of the Stone Age (2005)

of Montreal w/ Janelle Monae (2010)

Owen Pallett w/ Little Scream (2010)

Patrick Wolf w/ Bishi (2007)

Prince (2011)

Pulp w/ Grace Jones, TV on the Radio, The Hives, The Horrors, Metronomy, Devotcka, Vintage Trouble (2011)

Rufus Wainwright w/ Teddy Thompson (2010)

Snow Patrol w/ Embrace (2005)

Snow Patrol w/ OK Go + Silversun Pickups (2007)

Sons and Daughters w/ Bodies of Water (2008)

Stars w/ Thurston Revival (2006)

Stars w/ The Details (2008)

Stars (2010)

Steven Severin (2010)

Stroszek (2007)

The Antlers w/ Haunter (2012)

The Flaming Lips w/ Ariel Pink's Haunted Graffiti (2010)

The Jesus and Mary Chain w/ Nightbox (2012)

The Killers w/ Ambulance Ltd (2004)

The New Pornographers w/ Novillero (2008)

The New Pornographers w/ The Mountain Goats (2010)

The Ordinary Boys w/ Young Soul Rebels (2006)

The Pains of Being Pure at Heart w/ Suun (2011)

The Rakes w/ The Young Knives (2006)

The Raveonettes w/ Black Acid (2008)

The Stills w/ Gentleman Reg (2009)

The Subways w/ The Mad Young Darlings (2006)

Tokyo Police Club w/ Smoosh + Attack in Black (2008)

TV on the Radio w/ The Dirty Projectors (2009)

Yann Tiersen w/ Breathe Owl Breathe (2011)

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The only certain thing that is left about me

There is no part of my body that has not been used

Pity or pain, to show displeasure's shame

Everyone I've loved or hated always seems to leave

Photobucket

So I turned myself to face me

But I've never caught a glimpse

Of how the others must see the faker

I'm much too fast to take that test

The Smiths Queen is Dead

A dreaded sunny day

So let's go where we're happy

And I meet you at the cemetry gates

Oh, Keats and Yeats are on your side

A dreaded sunny day

So let's go where we're wanted

And I meet you at the cemetry gates

Keats and Yeats are on your side

But you lose 'cause weird lover Wilde is on mine

The Clash London Calling

When they kick at your front door

How you gonna come?

With your hands on your head

Or on the trigger of your gun

Photobucket

Charles Windsor, who's at the door

At such an hour, who's at the door

In the back of an old green Cortina

You're on your way to the guillotine

Here the rabble comes

The kind you hoped were dead

They've come to chop, to chop off your head

Photobucket

Then you came with your breezeblocks

Smashing up my face like a bus-stop

You think you're giving

But you're taking my life away

Photobucket

Won't someone give me more fun?

(and the skin flies all around us)

We kiss in his room to a popular tune

Oh, real drowners

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Don't walk away

In silence

See the danger

Always danger

Endless talking

Life rebuilding

Don't walk away

Walk in silence

Don't turn away in silence

Your confusion

My illusion

Worn like a mask of self-hate

Confronts and then dies

Don't walk away

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You don't want to hurt me

But see how deep the bullet lies

Unaware I'm tearing you asunder

Oh there is thunder in our hearts

Is there so much hate for the ones we love

Tell me we both matter don't we

The Associates Affectionate

I don't know whether

To over or under estimate you

Whether to over or under estimate you

For when I come over

You then put me under

Personal taste is a matter of gender

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I wake at dusk to go alone without a light

To the unknown

I want this night inside of me

I want to feel

I want this speeding

I want that speeding

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You'll never live like common people

You'll never do what common people do

You'll never fail like common people

You'll never watch your life slide out of view

And dance and drink and screw

Because there's nothing else to do

Vanilla Swingers

All I have is words, words that don't obtain

And I feel I'm a stain on your horizon

So I stay away - it's easier that way

And there won't be no-one I need to rely on

Is it him, is it me

Or is there something only I can see

How did I get here, why do we blow around like straw dogs on the breeze

I'm a special one, what they used to say

But I've to stay on, finish levels-A

You don't need exams when you've read John Gray

The Indelicates American Demo

And nobody ever comes alive

And the journalists clamour round glamour like flies

And boys who should know better grin and get high

With fat men who once met the MC5

And no one discusses what they don't understand

And no one does anything to harm the brand

And this gift is an illusion, this isn't hard

Absolutely anyone can play the fucking guitar

JAMC Darklands

And we tried so hard

And we looked so good

And we lived our lives in black

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Plucked her eyebrows on the way

Shaved her leg and then he was a she

She says, hey babe,

Take a walk on the wild side

Said, hey honey, take a walk on the wild side

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Hide on the promenade

Etch a postcard:

How I dearly wish I was not here

In the seaside town...that they forgot to bomb

Come, come, come - nuclear bomb

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Back when we were kids

We would always know when to stop

And now all the good kids are messing up

Nobody has gained or accomplished anything

Wire Pink Flag

Prices have risen since the government fell

Casualties increase as the enemy shell

The climate's unhealthy, flies and rats thrive

And sooner or later the end will arrive

This is your correspondent, running out of tape

Gunfire's increasing, looting, burning, rape

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Well, maybe there's a god above

But all I've ever learned from love

Was how to shoot somebody who outdrew you

It's not a cry that you hear at night

It's not somebody who's seen the light

It's a cold and it's a broken hallelujah

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And what costume shall the poor girl wear

To all tomorrow's parties

For Thursday's child is Sunday's clown

For whom none will go mourning

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My body is your body

I won't tell anybody

If you want to use my body

Go for it

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Oh it's opening time

Down on Fascination Street

So let's cut the conversation

And get out for a bit

Because I feel it all fading and paling

And I'm begging

To drag you down with me

Mansun Six

And you see, I kind of shivered to conformity

Did you see the way I cowered to authority

You see, my life, it's a series of compromises anyway

It's a sham, and I'm conditioned to accept it all, you see

Japan Gentlemen

Take in the country air, you'll never win

Gentlemen take polaroids

They fall in love, they fall in love

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We just want to emote til we're dead

I know we suffer for fashion

Or whatever

We don't want these days to ever end

We just want to emasculate them forever

Forever, forever

Pretty sirens don't go flat

It's not supposed to happen like that

Longpigs The Sun

There's no perfume I can buy

Make me smell like myself

So I put on perfume

To make me smell like someone else

In bed

Calvin Harris I Created Disco

I got love for you if you were born in the 80's, the 80's

I've got hugs for you if you were born in the 80's, the 80's

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Does his makeup in his room

Douse himself with cheap perfume

Eyeholes in a paper bag

Greatest lay I ever had

Kind of guy who mates for life

Gotta help him find a wife

We're a couple, when our bodies double

Simple Minds Sons and Fascination

Summer rains are here

Savaged beauty life

Falling here from grace

Sister feeling call

Cruising land to land

No faith no creed no soul

Half a world away

Beauty sleeps in time

Sound and fury play

Bloc Party Silent Alarm

North to south

Empty

Running on

Bravado

As if to say, as if to say

He doesn't like chocolate

He's born a liar, he'll die a liar

Some things will never be different

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LCD Soundsystem

Well Daft Punk is playing at my house, my house

I've waited 7 years and 15 days

There's every kid for miles at my house, my house

And the neighbors can't...call the police

There's a fist fight brewin' at my house, my house

Because the jocks can't...get in the door

Johnny Boy

I just can't help believing

Though believing sees me cursed

Stars Set Yourself

I am trying to say

What I want to say

Without having to say "I love you"

Josef K Entomology

It took 10 years to realise why the angels start to cry

When you go home down the main

Your happy smile

Your funny name

Cocteau Twins Bluebell

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Doesn't she look a million with her hairagami set

Hair kisses 'n' hair architecture

Yes, she's a beautiful brunette angel from heaven with her hairagami set

Hair kisses 'n' hair architecture

Augment a beautiful brunette

New Order Power Corruption

How does it feel

To treat me like you do

When you've laid your hands upon me

And told me who you are

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You must let her go

She's not crying

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Baiting

Feeling like I'm waiting

Modern times

Valentines

Hating

Hating to distraction

Just leave them alone

Whipcrack

Girls in the back

Girls in the back

Puressence Don't Forget

They say come back to earth and start getting real, yeah

I say come back to earth and start getting real

I know I can't

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So I walk right up to you

And you walk all over me

And I ask you what you want

And you tell me what you need

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The problem of leisure

What to do for pleasure

Ideal love a new purchase

A market of the senses

Dream of the perfect life

Economic circumstances

The body is good business

Sell out, maintain the interest

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Sitting in my armchair thinking again and again and again

Going round in a circle I can't get out

Then I look around thinking day and night and day

Then you look around - there must be some explanation

And the tension builds

Psychdedelic Furs

India, India

You're my love song

India, you're my love song

In the flowers

You can have me in the flowers

We will dance alone

And live our useless lives

Ladytron Light Magic

They only want you when you're seventeen

When you're twenty-one

You're no fun

They take a polaroid and let you go

Say they'll let you know

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No consolation prizes

Spit out your lies and chewing gum

Cut off your hair yeah that's it!

If you look like that I swear I'm gonna love you more

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All the neighbors are startin' up a fire

Burning all the old folks, the witches and the liars.

My eyes are covered by the hands of my unborn kids

But my heart keeps watchin' through the skin of my eyelids

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Prince charming

Prince charming

Ridicule is nothing to be scared of

Don't you ever, don't you ever

Stop being dandy, showing me you're handsome