Radio Clubfoot on 6music!

Radio ClubFoot won the 2009 Student Radio Award for Best Specialist Music and as a consequence took over, ney, smashed the 6Mix on BBC 6Music.

In trying to maintain the essence of the show which has also seen electronic music legends such as Orbital, Andrew Weatherall and Erol Alkan take control, they blended classic Groove Armada and Roots Manuva with brand new music from underground luminaries Fis-T, Florrie and an exclusive from Warrior One ft. Serocee.

Their show was wicked, and if you missed it download it here.

Tracklist –
Groove Armada – Superstylin
Florrie – Fascinate Me (Fred Falke Remix)
Carte Blanche Feat. Kid Sister – Do! Do! Do!
Man Without Country – Closet Addicts Anonymous

Guest Selector – Roska
Groove Chronicles – 1999

Hurts – Wonderful Life (Mantronix Remix)
Katy B – Katy On A Mission
Roots Manuva – Witness (One Hope)
Joker – Tron
Ossie B – Maybe Ting (Refix)
Flux Pavillion – Get To Know

Guest Selector – Deadboy
Prince – Little Red Corvette

Jay Electronica – Exhibit C
Fis-T – Night Hunter
Warrior One Feat. Serocee – Bullring Riddim
Cajmere – Percolator
The Chemical Brothers – Saturate
Jamaica – I Think I Like U 2

Dave 1 from Chromeo On The Phone
Chromeo – Night By Night
Chromeo – Night By Night (Skream Remix)

Chase and Status Feat. Dizzee Rascal – Heavy

ClubFoot In The Mix Part I – Will
French Horn Rebellion vs Database – Beaches And Friends (The Twelves Remix)

Vanguard – Loving Someone Else

Duck Sauce – Barbra Streisand (O-God Remix)
Armand Van Helden – You Don’t Know Me
David Borkmann – Superior (Club Mix)

ClubFoot In The Mix Part II – Ashley
The Streets – Has It Come To This
Hackman – Pistol In Your Pocket
Four Tet – Love Cry (Joy Orbison Remix)
Mosca – Gold Bricks, I See You

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Alphabeat interview at Cardiff’s HMV

Danish pop outfit Alphabeat have been filling their diaries of late, with any available slot seeming like an affront to their current work ethic.

This said, the group’s vocal duo, Stine Bramsen and Anders SG, seemed surprisingly relaxed as they sat in a dingy office above Cardiff’s HMV this week.

Surprising, that is, because their second album, The Beat Is…, was released on Monday, mid-way through their UK tour with chart impresario — and label mate — Lady Gaga, leaving them just enough time to squeeze in a spate of in-store performances around the country.

But this visit to the capital was markedly different from their last visit.

“We’ve been to Cardiff four times, I think, but we played down in a basement the last time we were here. I think it was the Barfly?” said Anders SG.

Anyone familiar with Cardiff’s club scene will know the sweat-stained walls of the Barfly could not be a further cry from their venue this time: Cardiff International Arena, where they open for Lady Gaga.

Dressed in a dazzling gold outfit, flame-haired female vocalist Stine Bramsen said: “It’s an ultra-quick set of about five songs or so. It lasts about 20 minutes.”

“At the big venues, we sort of just do what we usually do, you know?” chips in Anders.

“There’s a lot of people who have heard us, maybe on the radio, and they build up this picture of us. When they see us live, perhaps it changes. We do try to get people clapping and all that stuff.

“If you don’t know us, I don’t think we need more than 20 minutes to get the message across anyway.”

If the Silkeborg septet seem comfortable with this level of acclaim, perhaps it is because they haven’t rushed into things, taking success on their own terms.

In 2007, the band turned down the chance to support the Spice Girls on their UK tour because they felt it would be “weird” playing in front of such big audiences before they were well known.

When asked what had changed since then, Stine said, “We feel like we’ve worked our way up now. We’ve done so many gigs, about 190 in the first year, in bigger and bigger venues.

“We feel like there’s a big awareness of Alphabeat now in the UK and it’s also a good opportunity to get out to any doubters.”

This is certainly true: these plaudits have also allowed them to make the record they have always wanted. Their new release, The Beat Is…, moves away from the instrument-driven pop of their debut and looks more to electronic music from the early 1990s for inspiration.

Clearly relishing discussion of their new sound, Anders said: “When we started the band, this was the kind of sound we wanted.

“We slowly started to find out we had to make the sound ourselves. The big change was we started to make music on computers rather than just standing in a rehearsal space so that’s really developed the sound for this record.<

“That’s definitely something we always wanted, we just didn’t know how to do it.”

The difference between the two albums is quite stark, but the band’s commitment to live instruments is key.

“The fact we are still very much a live band means the new songs fit quite well into the new ones because they are all played live we don’t use any sampled drums or triggers,” Stine said.

It is not just a change of musical direction which has galvanised the group. Alphabeat left their original label Charisma, a subsidiary of EMI, and joined Polydor to release the new record.

Anders said: “There’s been a lot more confidence in the whole process of making the record, just being at Polydor is a lot calmer than our days at Charisma.

“People used to get fired every week and people would just try to impress you. It wasn’t a good time to be on that label.

“At Polydor it’s just the complete opposite.”

The subsequent acoustic performance the duo produced to a busy HMV showed why the band are able to utilise this new, comfortable professional environment to flourish.

Stine and Anders’s flawless vocals sounded just as breathtaking backed only by an acoustic guitar as they do by glossy synths and punchy drums: clearly now at ease with their current trajectory.

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Changes in my life…

You may have thought this plucky little blog had seen its last days; the most recent post coming as most people were readying their livers for the onslaught of New Years Eve 2009.

Well — you may be pleased/aghast to hear — this is not the case.

While other journalistic commitments have meant we’ve not been listening to as much music recently as we would have liked, we have been conducting an existential, internal debate.

What is the point of this blog?

In short, we have realised that opinion pieces, as engaging as they are as a supplementary feature, are not worthy on their own.

Hence, this site will now be committed to bringing in some of the best exclusive content from the Cardiff music scene.

This will start with an interview with Danish pop-stars Alphabeat (who we met yesterday), and acoustic sessions with Icelandic group Hjaltalín and, later on, Errors

STAY TUNED!

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fun. fun. fun. !!

‘Be Calm’

It’s New Years bloody Eve, why are you reading this instead of rolling around in a puddle of vomit, cheap whiskey and party-popper innards? That is what fun is all about isn’t it?

Well not quite.

When pianist Andrew Dost quit superb Chicago indie ensemble Anathallo in 2009 (leaving them with a mere 7 members), one might have been forgiven for thinking his next musical move would be in the same pensive, sombre vein. One, in this instance, couldn’t have been more wrong.

Teaming up with Nate Ruess, formerly of The Format, and Jack Antonoff, still of Steel Train, Dost is now involved in an unlikely, yet surprisingly successful, supergroup: fun. (yes, full stop in the title).

Their debut album, Aim and Ignite couldn’t be a further cry from Floating World, Dost’s last record with Anathallo. It can only be described as what the Beach Boys, or even Queen, might have sounded like if Weezer’s power-pop had been one of their influences. At a fairground.

The first time I heard the opening track, Be Calm, I was somewhat overwelmed by the corucopia of instruments, melodies and ideas being thrown at me. Ruess’ voice is also outstanding; ranging from quivering hushed tones to half-screamed highs.  Other highlights are the the afro beat ditty, Walking the Dog, and the plush trumpet and harmonies in I Wanna be the One.

However, talking of highlights in such a consistently brilliant album just seems silly. Just buy it; it will be the best, most fun. £7.99 you ever part with.

Just ask this audience:

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Throw up an ‘ironic gun hand’ to this Murdok wobbler

With so many remix competitions — like the one currently being run by Stockport sensation Delphic — the profusion of reworks flooding the blogosphere of late is hardly a surprise.

The Smoothest Gooch blog, whose high standard of content matches the juvenile hilarity of its title and banner, have uncovered (or rather, been sent) a gem — Murdok‘s rework of Imogen Heap‘s 2-1. While the oh-so-cooky Heap burst onto the scene some time ago with auto-tune-a-thon Hide and Seek (of which there is a pretty solid remix by rising dupstep producer Mt Eden), her recent album, Ellipse, was pretty disappointing. This remix, as ‘the Gooch rightly appraises, has breathed some much needed life into her music.

Her voice, an asset never in doubt, is allowed to flow — free from the shackles of her increasingly-neurotic production. And while the differing LFO speeds (the wobbly bits — in layman’s terms) and shuffled hi-hats are nothing new, this is still a well thought-out track. The atmospheric production makes it — along with Jack Beats’ La Roux, and Neon Steve’s Phoenix, remixes — one of the better offerings of the year!

Listen to Imogen Heap — 2-1 (Murdok remix) via The Smoothest Gooch.

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FENECH SOLER release best song to come out of Abergavenny!

For those of you whose image of Christmas is — like that hellish, Wham! video/monstrosity — adorned with quaint portraits of roasted chestnuts, mulled wine and other things people pretend to like around this time of year, here’s somewhat of a musical digression.

Fenech Soler have just ripped the wrapping paper open to reveal what can only be described as an absolute monster. Their remix of the Marina and the Diamonds chart botherer, Hollywood (available below), sees them trade-in their traditional trancyness for utter, buzzsaw-synth-induced brute force.

Anyone familiar with the BBC or Guardian’s ‘hotly-tipped for 2010’-esque lists will be familiar with Marina and the Diamonds. I took particular interest in the starlet as, although now living in London, she hails from my hometown of Abergavenny. This surely makes Fenech Soler’s remix the best piece of music to have origins in this suburban ville.

Although I’ve nothing too positive to say about the overblown theatrics of the original record, Fenech Soler augment the positive features the 23-year-old Welsh-Greek artist does possess — they make one feel as if Hollywood was recorded specifically with their rework in mind. Marina’s uniquely-strong voice makes for a perfect foil to the rasping, compressed bass. And while, in the original, her brash “Oh my God” was a little annoying; here, it gleefully-heralds a small field-trip for your speaker cones, and, no doubt, another boost in notoriety for the precocious Fenech Soler.

Hollywood” (Fenech-Soler Remix) – Marina & The Diamonds on Neon Gold.

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Merry Xmas from ‘HAFS?’!!!

If you do anything else this xmas besides guzzle mince pies and politely recieve gifts you don’t really want, make sure you watch this video: a beautifully shot, intimate concert of balkan-indie crossover outfit Beruit from the fantastic French blog, La Blogotheque.

Check out other videos on their site — it’s much, much better than this one!

BEIRUT VIDEO!

Have a good ‘un tomorrow on the big J-man’s birthday!

x

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