Jun 19, 2008

Pathetic, turgid and very unKylie - number two of a descending series of five

Itunes review

Hop across to Ebay and look up item number 120274828675. I've never sold on Ebay before, but there are my Kylie tickets right there.

Right then. Back to my enthralling series-- wait-- that doesn't quite sound right.

Back to my interesting series on customer reviews-- hold on a sec-- I'm not sure if that really sums things up too well.

One final try.

Back to my turgid attempt at a "series of posts" about customer reviews on i-tunes, as if anyone really gives a hamster's crotch.

Towards the beginning of the month, I decided to put up five reviews on i-tunes in a descending order of positivity. The first review got five stars, the second would get four stars, and so on until my fifth review which would be a scathing one-star rant.

And so to my four star review, referred to on this blog as "that album that had the red cover and it sounded a bit like a movie soundtrack," and otherwise known as Deadly Avenger's Deep Red.

This series will get interesting when we get into the lower stars. Honest.

Go, Kylie! You got it, guuurlfriend!

A warm, filmic engrossing album for fans of DJ Shadow and David

It ranges from gorgeously dark, low-down depths (Black Sun, Lopez), to
weaker easy listening down-tempo (Blade, Love Sounds), to Avenger's particular
area of strength - grand, spacious, friendly, meaty, beaty pieces of enjoyable
soundtrack pomp (We Took Pelham, Punisher).

Electronica that positively breathes down your neck. Four stars.

Jun 15, 2008

It's not a pie chart but I called it a Bri Chart because that was the only pun I could think of

bri chart

This chart shows why I'm worried about Brian Eno. (Click here for large.)

I should have posted this months ago, when Eno told Radio 4's Front Row that he would be producing the latest LP from tapioca-flavoured, whinging popmunters Coldplay.

He said their new material "will be very original and very different from what they've done before."

It wasn't.

Viva La Whatever was released by Coldplay this week and, like past albums from James and U2, you can see the Eno sheen dripping from every note.

But what was Eno thinking of? What was the former producer of U2's sunglasses era and Talking Heads doing anywhere near a band I consider so bad, I'd rather trim my toenails with a chainsaw than listen to Chris Martin's Bluntesque mediocrity.

That's why I created my Bri Chart, above, showing the collapsing milestone's of Brian Eno's production career.

On a more delightful note, listen to Islands covering Eno's The Big Ship (you'll need to scroll down a bit).

Of his Eno cover, Islands' Nicholas Thorburn said "It doesn't matter if it's sloppy. Things can be a little rough around the edges if they have heart."

Or they can be as neat and tidy as a Coldplay song and have absolutely no pulse whatsoever.

Just time for an mpSunday, the series where I use the internet to give away music. Clever, I know. It only seems relevant to bust you some Eno, so here goes:

mpSunday: Brian Eno's Big Ship (this mp3 has now gaaawn - click here for the latest mpSunday.)

Jun 12, 2008

The gimp's guide to mind music


Who'd have guessed gimp masks were the key to unleashing the most phantasmagoric music humankind has ever set ears on?

No, I'm not talking about a startling new direction for Sigur Ros.

A lunatic called Mick in a place called London has attached electrodes to his bonce to create his own symphonies using simply the power of his deranged mind.

The device doesn't work a third of the time. This is possibly more to do with his skewed brain than the equipment he is using.

Nevertheless, here he is in a BBC video thinking up a sequence of notes whilst staring at the most distracting screensaver known to humanity.

There is a plus side. People who are less abled can make music, and this could open great new avenues for music therapy.

But for every plus, there has to be a minus. That can be found in the last line of the BBC news article, about a new video game using the gimp headset:

"It enables players to vanquish villains through thoughts and emotions."

If I had that ability, there'd be carnage. More carnage, even, than Mr Tran's trip to a toy store.

Mick from London, you are my new hero.

Jun 2, 2008

Thrusting little pointy blighters - number one of a descending series of five

Itunes review

I'm not sure if I agree with five-star rating systems after Empire magazine thrust four of the little pointy blighters on the travesty that is the new Indiana Jones film.

Unpeturbed, I was trawling i-Tunes to find "that album that had the red cover and it sounded a bit like a movie soundtrack" when I discovered some of my favourite albums had no customer reviews.

Why should I be fussed what the general public thinks when those with the loudest voice seem to be YouTube commenters, Have Your Say armchair pundits and Britain's Got Talent voters? (George was actually quite good, despite Day Of Moustaches' entertaining threat.)

Still, I decided to right the wrong. I am going to pen a handful of customer reviews for electronica albums on i-Tunes... with the following rules:

- It has to be an album I own that has been out for a while but no-one has written any reviews yet (as shown in the blue screen above).

- My first review will be a five-star rating. I will then find an album and give it a four-star rating. And so on, ending on a one-star review for an album I own but hate.

The idea is my reviews should get more vitriolic as I go on. First, to the five-star review. I have submitted the following review of Squarepusher's 1997 album Burningn'n Tree:
What happens when you let an electronic artist loose on his first love - the bass guitar? You probably get Jah Wobble.

What happens when you let an electronic artist loose on his first love - the bass guitar - and then lock him inside a spaceship airlock with a toolbox full of spanners, a detuned television and a light stick? Have a listen to Burningn'n Tree to find out.

It may not be his most consistent, and I'm not sure where speed bass sits in the ouvre of dance music, but it's a thoroughly enjoyable album and should be considered a classic of its kind. Five stars.

I-Tunes vet reviews before they're posted, so I'll let you know when this one appears. So far so dull. I'm off to find an album deserving of four stars...