Jan 28, 2012

Cars and girls

It's strange growing up in some of the 70s and all of the 80s. Because it means, like everyone else who is exactly my age, I know every word to Prefab Sprout's 1988 UK#44 hit Cars And Girls.

When asked in a job interview once why I would be suitable for the position, I said I was 'in it for the cars and girls'. They didn't get the Prefab Sprout reference, but I did get the job.

Now I'm all about the cars and girls. It's my mantra. It's my life.

Cars. And girls. Everyone who knows me says that's all I talk about. I've even been tweeting about cars and girls. As Prefab Sprout said, "Look at us now, keep driving, something something something cars and girls."

Click here (or click the picture, I guess) to see a larger, readable version.

Jan 14, 2012

The ApartHotel (Techno Plug) Experience

Anyone who has been within 50 miles of me over the past week would have seen me frothing at the goolies at the thought of staying in an aparthotel.

An aparthotel is like a hotel but it has flats instead of rooms. Technically, it's a flotel.

I was staying in one of these portmanteau properties for a work thing. That is the dull bit. The interesting bit is it had a TECHNO PLUG. Imagine Autechre doing your plumbing.

Let this overly long video explain more...

Jan 8, 2012

Skrillex is fourth in the BBC Sound Of "Zane Lowe"

We've had a momentous start to 2012 and you don't even know it. Comical screamo dubstep kid Skrillex has come fourth in the BBC Sound Of 2012.

The Sound Of 2012 is an annual poll of pop pundits and producers. The voters include shadowy behind-the-scenes people from the BBC, the music editor of Skins and the head of music for, um, BT Vision.

Oh and "Zane Lowe". If that's his real name.

They tip their hat towards artists who are yet to enjoy major success, the Beeb stuffs the hat through a sorting hat and then the top five hats are put in order of hat.

The Sound Of [Enter Year] rarely gets it right. In 2005, they chose The Bravery over Tom Vek, while winners have included Mika and 50 Cent (really?!).

The rest of 2012's top five isn't relevant because I've just clicked away the tab in Firefox, but I'm pretty sure it comprises some soul singer, Niki & The Dove, a really sweary woman and a man named after the sea. The important thing is there is comedy dubstep at number four.

In a revealing interview for the BBC, Skrillex says he has been jamming with Nero and, if you listen carefully, admits he takes a nap between his gigs and his aftershow parties. He seems like a nice guy. A tired, nice guy.

If "Zane Lowe" likes him, then he's okay by me. Because we all love "Zane Lowe". As long as - and this is an appeal from my steaming bowels - Skrillex stops doing that thing with his hands. Seriously...

Jan 4, 2012

Hounds Of Hulme: Midnite EP (final promo video 3)

Edit: The Midnite EP can now be bought here: only a quid! Oh and this, incidentally, is the 600th post on Fat Roland On Electronica.

Street teams have been walking every avenue of the country promoting the inevitable number one single from Hounds Of Hulme, posting flyers through doors, shouting the track names through loudhailers and spray-painting the band logo on children's faces.

Of course, that's not true. There's no street team. When one of your band members is a horse (see the band line-up on the Bandcamp page), you spend most of your time clearing the poo-droppings from the mixing desk. At least, we would if we had a mixing desk. Or a shovel. We use our hands. In fact, we have fashioned all the horse manure into a big brown pretend mixing desk.

All I have is my final promotional video, which is pretty similar to the others. And this is how I'm describing the EP:
"3 tracks of glitchy techno packaged with artwork, a hilarious two-page PDF survival guide to one of the tracks and a bonus bad quality video... all for only a quid."
The video is really bad, although it's fun. At one point I was recording moving pictures of my own wallpaper. The promo videos here are only a screenshot from one frame. If you want to see the full three minutes, you'll have to buy the EP, obviously.

I've released a few Hounds Of Hulme tracks over the past few months. Yes, I kept it quiet. One of them was the backing track for this advert for Quickies: Short Stories For Adults, while another track was described as a "sparse and minimalist mechanoid meltdown glitch funk groove" and compared to EMF, Eskimos in Egypt, Jesus Jones and Wagon Christ. Which was perceptive because I own records by all four bands on vinyl or on tape or on wax cylinder.

Hardly anyone will take notice of the Hounds so if the Midnite EP sells more than a handful, I'll crack open the champagne / Toblerone. Roll on Monday... watch out for the pre-order appearing on Bandcamp later this week.

Edit: This was the 600th post on this blog, so I've plopped in a bit of artwork to celebrate the fact. If you like the artwork, it will be available as a permanent tattoo on Etsy in the next few minutes.

Jan 3, 2012

Hounds Of Hulme: Midnite EP (promo video 2)

Edit: The Midnite EP can now be bought here: only a quid! 

Following on from the promo video yesterday for my debut single as Hounds Of Hulme, here is an ever-so-slightly different promo video.

The great news is that the Midnite EP is now a "package". So it's not just three tracks of techno noodling, and it's not just that one of them has a bad quality video, and it's not just artwork bundled with the tracks, but you now get a two-page PDF survival guide designed to help you listen to the the longest track on the EP and not die before you get to the end.

Here's a glimpse of the survival guide (below), complete with track timings. If you want the whole thing, you'll have to buy the EP, which goes on pre-sale later this week in advance of its official release on January 9th.

In the words of forgotten mid-noughties r'n'b sensation Ciara, "Looking for the goodies? Keep on looking coz they stay in the jar... unless you give me a quid on Bandcamp, in which case you can download the advertised product."

Jan 2, 2012

Hounds Of Hulme: Midnite EP (promo video 1)

Edit: The Midnite EP can now be bought here: only a quid! 

Expect a few days of relentless self-promotion as I catapult into the world what appears to be my debut single.

I've avoided the restrictions of getting a record deal, having a producer, using a recording studio, getting any promotion or employing any form of quality control. Instead, it's just me and my bandmates in Hounds Of Hulme, one of which is a horse.

I'm quite glad to finally announce this as I've kept it under my hat for a few weeks: I kind of wanted it to be a New Year thing. This promotional video may explain more. Or not. The Midnite EP is released on Monday. It will be available for pre-ordering on Bandcamp later this week.