Thursday, 28 June 2007

Er, goodbye then!

Look at Geri! Look at Geri! Quite possibly the worst ever picture of The Spice Girls.

Mel C has been dragged kicking and screaming into this reunion. She's already talking about this being a "Goodbye to the fans" before it's even begun. In fact, she couldn't get it out fast enough. I'm sure I she was nudging the others walking towards the bank of cameras at the photocall in Greenwich going "Make sure we all say this is a Farewell Tour. You listening Geri?" Er, OK, love. Calm down, Sulky Spice.

Actually, Geri, 34, *splutter, yeah right* wasn't listening. She was floating off somewhere in her head dreaming about being Earth Mother Spice - WTF did she come as? Posh had come as Android Spice with tits that could kill. Emma was being, erm, pregnant Emma, but was still Baby Spice. And Mel B was unusually quiet but was actually suffering with the hangover from hell (she was out on the lash until 2.30am last night). Not so much Scary Spice as Sicky Spice.

Posh: "We will invade. We will kill". Mel C: "WTF am I doing here?". Geri: "La, la, la. I'm a pwetty flower". Emma: "I want chocolate". Mel B: "Bleurgh".

This will be the most loved/criticised reunion ever. The press will over analyse/igonore it. But whatever, it'll make a lot of money. The Girls will have closure (unless they become a bit deluded and actually keep going) and I'm off to the Spice Girls site to reserve my ticket.


Someone I know who worked on Spiceworld The Movie (poo, worra stinker) told me this years ago and I've since had someone relay it to me as a story from a 'friend of a friend'.

Are you sitting comfortably. Then I shall begin.

Posh Spice had a trademark stage costume then of a tiny dress and in the movie it was a little black Gucci dress. The seams went up the side and in order for it to be figure hugging tight, she would actually be sewn INTO the dress. Two costume people would pull the frock as tight as they could around here, as if it was a corset, as she shouted, "Tighter! Tighter!"

One day, the dress was so tight, and having no knickers on, Posh's pubes were pushing their way through the fabric and were actually visible. The costume people were horrified and insisted she put some underwear on. She was even more horrified and said, "No way. I don't want no VPL" (Visible Panty Line). She then grabbed a pair of scissors and began CUTTING the hairs poking through the surface of the dress.

Just then the 2nd AD came in asking for her to come to the set immediately. "Hang on!" She shouted to him, "I'm trimming me fucking growler!".

Ooh! How Posh!

Wednesday, 27 June 2007

Dare! 2007!

So the dates have been announced for the annual December Human League UK tour. But this year there is a twist. According to Electronically Yours they will perform Dare! in it's entirety! A. May. Zing.

This album has been a favourite of mine ever since my 12 year old mitts got a copy for Christmas. I played it day in and day out during my formative years and like any album held in such fond regard, it has become as recognisable to me as my own name. As a not yet fully-formed gayer, the androgeny of Phil with his make-up and Miss Selfridge clothes and the girls themselves, with their Boots No.7 make-up, were a perfect the combination to me. The design of the gatefold sleeve with its nod to the design of Vogue and tracks recorded using only synths and drum machines, meant that the album held weight and would stand up as the classic it has become.

I've seen the band live many times, and although they've never professed to being singers, they've never been dull and always entertaining. The girls will do at least five costume changes (Susanne's influence methinks) and if they slip up vocally, they will apologise and move on. Or in the case of Joanne, when she came in a bar too soon with a booming, off-key "Norman!" for the middle eight of Things That Dreams Are Made Of, they'll chastise themselves with a Yorksire tinged "Fookin' Hell" and move on.

Shhh! If we don't say anything, people might not realise Dare! is 26 years old...

They're playing Hammersmith Apollo in London on December 1st and around the country before and after. The dates are also on Electronically Yours' post, (scroll down to 21.06.07).

The first track on the album is this one. With the oblique lyrics and the backing track made to dance to, it's the epitomy of the Human League sound.
The Things That Dreams Are Made Of - The Human League (mp3 Download)

Tuesday, 26 June 2007

The Power of Good Buy

This is the £6 million pad Madge and Guy, sorry, Madge, bought in Marylebone, London. I've been past and it's all very innocuous. Not very showbiz at all. A bit of a let down really. If Dame Shirley Bassey* lived there she'd have a great big, fuck off 'DSB' in lights above the door and a silk-gloved arm, rattling with Asprey & Garrard's finest gems, would do a Bassey flourish from the bedroom window on a regular basis.

Apparently Jennifer Saunders was in on the original bidding process. She stopped at £3.57. But our Madge won over Mario Testino and added it like a Monopoly house to her bulging property portfolio.

I thought this letter in the free evening paper, London Lite, summed up what everyone must be thinking about this story:

"Madonna can shell out £6m on another London home, but what about plans for Malawi, from where she adopted David? It seems to have gone quiet - they could do with that sort of cash. Gem - London"

*shakes head and looks to the floor*

Her Madge and Daby Bavid**

*Dame Shirley Bassey walking to the stage in Glastonbury, where apparently, she went down a storm, despite the storms. Show us your wellies, love!

**In the UK sitcom, The Royal Family, Gran, said to Denise's baby David, after a few too many: "Night, night Daby Bavid" to much hilarity across the nation.

Sunday, 24 June 2007

The chromosomes match

At last! I've always tried really hard with Roisin Murphy. I've always thought she has a unique and gorgeous voice but just couldn't get on with the songs. Like everyone, my collection started and ended with Moloko's Sing It Back. But this new track, Overpowered, is right up my strasse. It's out next week and, as ever, the video accompanying it is creatively fabulous.

The Gareth Pugh outfit makes the story, that of a pop star finishing to a huge adoring crowd and then leaving with no entourage, no fanfare and getting on the bus to go home. An extraordinary vision in an ordinary world. That huge mad dress and coat of Pugh's looks surreal in the grimy city landscape, especially when she pops into the Take Away for a drunken Kebab.

There's some great remixes of Overpowered, all with their very own MySpace, Roisin Murphy Remixed. XO pointed out the Seamus Haji one a couple of weeks ago and it's up there.

And there's another, here:
Overpowered (Loose Cannons Remix) - Roisin Murphy (mp3 Download)

And just because I love these paintings by Simon Henwood, and they'll make this site look gorge, a collage of 3 Roisins from the last album.

And here's a super duper remix of, what was, until now, my only RM tune.
Sing It Back (BMR Clubcut Mix) - Moloko (mp3 Download)

Saturday, 23 June 2007

Mutley, cool as.

It's been ages since Song 4 Mutya first ram-raided our senses, but as it's finally being given a single release, here is the cool-as-a-cucumber performance by Mutley, sorry, Mutya and Groove Armada at the Radio 1 Big Weekend last month.

Just look at those killer heels of hers. She can't walk in them though. You've got to walk around the stage like you want to hurt it, but Mutya can only do baby steps, cautiously. She looks great though. And the song is still fabulous. Try walking through town with it on your iPod. It really makes you think you're invincible. Except when you get stuck behind the plodding tourists.

Wednesday, 20 June 2007

Bit and Piece...

Before you read these words, put on a husky breathy voice with a posh English accent. "They've never approached me. I must say I'm sitting here on my hands bitterly waiting for something to come through the letter box. But they've never come near me, so I guess it's not on the cards." That was Joanna Lumley (aka Patsy Stone in Ab Fab) talking to the Radio Times about desperately wanting to play a role on Doctor Who, where she would, of course, be brilliant.

I recently saw an episode of the heinous Geraldine McEwan Miss Marple series in France where La Lumley played a toothy gin-soaked Lady of Sutchandsutch. The French actress dubbing her was all raucous, raspy and strangely randy sounding, all breathy in the wrong way like she was about to lift up her skirts and do something rude. Absolutely wrong.

Yawn! Glasto 2007. I know I would probably love the festival if I went, (I have to repeat that over and over again to people who have been), but I can safely say I don't want to. Don't get me wrong, I actually like being around Glasto bores because it does sound like a world away from everything for a weekend and the idea of Shirley Bassey high kicking in a pair of wellies (she's on the bill!) just cracks me up. But, from a distance. Like a London bar full of gayers who have no interest in tents, wellies and (aptly named) The Enemy.

BTW, the NME cover actually looks like a pantomime poster. But I digress...

This morning, Bjork, bless her, went off on one about her love for the festival and how the ancient and savage instincts for tribal gathering sums up Glasto for her. Listen again to Radio Four's Today programme. Scroll down to the 8.00am clip.

Monday, 18 June 2007

Just one more 'Ooh la la!'

Arriving back from holiday and starting work the next day wasn't the ideal choice, but when the tickets were booked way back whenever, it actually seemed workable. Dur! It was pissing down this morning. The sky was as grey as greasy old London pigeon and I'd only managed a few hours sleep. I stumbled through from Hackney to London Bridge, fell into a cafe and mumbled "Je voudrai une cafe au lait, s'il vous plait". I could have fucking cried when the girl behind the counter went, "Yer wot?"

Ah well.

C'est la vie.

So tonight I flicked through some snaps, listened to some holiday tunes and all was right with the world.




sur le mer!


C'est moi!

Voyage, Voyage - Desireless (mp3 Download)
- an oldie by the scary looking man/woman.

My World - Tom Snare (mp3 Download)
- a newbie which starts off with an introduction by Stephen Hawkings and turns out to be a lovely dance track which sounds brilliant on the beach.

Sunday, 17 June 2007

Who's that girl?

It's the second time I've coined the Eurythmics song as a title for a post. But, picture the scene: I've just arrived at the apartment in Nice. I've been there a few times and the routine is that I head straight for the fabulosa Bang and Olufsen system and hit the radio button. I LOVE radio stations on the Med because they're just so fucking sunny, and on systems like this one the FM filter is super huge.

The station is NRJ, the chart hits station with a play list consisting of ONLY the top ten. Their jingles are even made to sound like the track: imagine a Mika sound-a-like going "NRJ (pronounced like 'energy') ooooh, NRJ ooooh" segueing into Relax, Take It Easy.

And then this track comes on. It's got a sparse electro/disco feel with a hooky repetitive chorus and a female singer with an intimate style which suddenly expands into operatics. I turn to my fella and say "This. Is. It". I knew from the first few bars that it had made it as the all-important holiday song.

Over the next few days I caught it on NRJ, but with the language barrier (I can ASK for things en francais but can't HEAR anything en francais) I struggled to discern who the singer was. Was it Crystaline? It was only near the end of the vacation, and after several fruitless visits to Virgin Megastore, we were in Le Bar Six, a popular gay haunt, when the hired chanteusse did her version of it on a stage fashioned out of a Go-go boy's podium. The crowd went wild, clearly a popular tune. I asked the barman who the original singer was and he told me it was Christophe Willem. A man! And the winner of the French equivalent of American Idol too! C'est incroyables! And bless, doesn't he actually sing about having a voice like the BeeGees... Obviously, the programme, Nouvelle Star, passed me by here in the UK and any pop blogs talking about him too. He won it last year and it's taken him this long to come up with his well-received material.

"C'est moi, Cristophe, ce n'est pas Christine"

The act, Lisa Angel (!) in Le Bar Six was so taken by our obvious appreciation (three G&Ts helps) that she asked me later if I had a request. When I asked for Christophe Willem the place erupted and she remarked how fab it was even les Anglais knew about him.

It's number one all over France and here it is:

Double Je - Christophe Willem
(mp3 Download)

Other tunes which touched the buttons over the hols were these:

'Allo, allo.

Lola - Superbus (mp3 Download)
A No Doubt-like act who have this very Euro sounding French hit with its "Boom, boom, boom" chorus. It had me tapping my Birkenstocks.

I'm as hard as Uffing nails, me!

The Party - Justice feat. Uffie (mp3 Download)
I can't be doing with Uffie, usually, being all crappily urban and ting. I think it's the try-hard hardness that's off-putting. But as I wandered through Zara looking for a cheap pair of Phillipe Philoppes this track came on. I actually like Uffie doing her Pink reprise but love it even more when the French phat beat comes in.

Sunday, 10 June 2007

I'm off on my hols!

I'm away for a week to sunny Nice on the Cote D'Azur! Lucky Me! Anyhoo, I'll try to post something, but otherwise, I'm back next Sunday.


Saturday, 9 June 2007

Another shameless Big Brother post

Famous last words I know, but I'm liking this Big Brother series. Last year's freaks 'n' totty show was ugly; like the drunk in the corner of the room no one wants to talk to for fear of being bored to death.

This year, it's zesty and with more girls than boys, it's feisty. Above all though, it's actually FUNNY! Chanelle is the biggest Joker in the pack for me: that accent! It's all "I knuuur" this and "Duuurn't" that. In this clip she's worried about the hygiene in the Big Brother house and the fact they might all get genital herpes from the toilet paper. Bless.

And I just love this clip of the argument over hair straightners. Chanelle is so right. Her hair IS a bubble that's hard to keep straight. Emily, playing the alpha male with everyone preening her, takes all that time to do her hair and it still looks like shagged-all-day-in-bed hair afterwards. Love Lesley's wry disdain from a distance...

And Shabnam! Completely. Barking. With the whites of her eyes clearly visible, a sure sign of madness, you just know there are screaming voices in her head telling to kill all the housemates. But she's completely dur too. This clip is crass stupidity at it's best.

It's a pity Lesley walked this morning, though. The pensioner was heads above the others. In a discussion about Harrods store with Chanelle saying to her "I love it there too" Lesley quips back: "Well, the difference between you and me my love, is that I can afford to shop at Harrods and you can't" Ouch.

And finally, good riddance to the bad rubbish that was Emily.

Thursday, 7 June 2007

Hotstufffilies. Yes! It IS all onebloodyword!

Part of my daily entertainment, nay, cultural gorgefest is to visit Hotstufffiles. Yes. It is onebloodyword. When you cross a pure passion for pop with a healthy cynicism you get this site. I'm probably preaching to the converted but if you haven't visited, PLEASE drop by.

Now hear dis! What a pleasant surprise. Siobhan Donaghy sits down wit Hotstuff to discuss LOADS, including Mutya's current success. It's great to have two cultural favourites interact! Siobhan also recognises how the t'internet can spread the joy:

Hotstufffiles: "Going back to the album: does it feel a bit annoying that the album was leaked on to the Internet so early before the release?"

Siobahn: "I think again that's a sign of the times that you can put as many restrictions as you want on the record, but it's going to leak and sometimes it can be to your benefit because we're really proud of this record and I think that the main thing - when radio can be so difficult these days - is just getting the exposure and sometimes that means leaking your album and the hardcore people that love your record will still go and buy it".

Love the last question. "So everything isn't bleak then?" Hahahahaha

P.S. The answer was "No".

Wednesday, 6 June 2007

This must be the remix...

Dragonette and Unklejam have a lot more in common than just having singles out at the same time. The dedication of these two bands deserves a huge amount of respect, but more importantly, they have a real PASSION for creating exciting music. That's PASSION in CAPS! I do cross my fingers, though, and hope they don't end up down the same sticky bargain bin dumper as The Modern and *sniff* Lorraine.

I really admire the bravery of Dragonette, the core of which upped sticks from Canada and headed for London because they thought it would best suit their ambitions.

And Unklejam arrived in town from all corners, including Miami, knowing that London would provide a creative haven for their brand of electro funk.

Here are two remixes which actually have a lot more in common than the original tunes they stem from, ie they're remixes that add to the canon not subtract. How many times have you found a mix only to hit delete on the first few 'pumping bars'? Unklejam released their best track What Am I Fighting For? on Monday just gone, and this remix mutates the track into a dirty house slammer whilst the Dragonette upcoming release, Take It Like a Man becomes a Braxe & Falke dirty disco special.

What Am I Fighting For (Steve Mac Smack Vocal Remix) - Unklejam (mp3 Download)

Take It Like a Man (Alan Braxe & Fred Falke Remix) - Dragonette
(mp3 Download)

Tuesday, 5 June 2007

"Marsheaux! Marsheaux! Marxheaux!"

A crap Brady Bunch pun I know but there you go. Greek synth duo Marsheaux, for that is their name, are about to step up a gear in their quest for world domination. Following a ringing endorsement from Popjustice, (and with a neater, more pithy post title than the one above), Electronically Yours reports that their brilliant Peek a Boo album is being 'double digi-packed' with their fabulous debut album Ebay Queen. Thanks girls. After I'd forked out for my SINGLE copy of Peek a Boo. *Snorts disdainfully like Brian Sewell*

Anyhoo, this is the 'newer' product

Client's German label, Out of Line, have come up with the spondoolics to make the magic happen. You can get your copy here at Non-Stop. This is genuinely great news for Marianthi and Sophie; they deserve the recognition of their gorgeous electro. But one thing: more promotion! I'd love to link to an interview but there's a complete dearth. Mind you this link is sweet, a badly translated version of what was probably a very poetic post in German on Nero Tunes.

Shh! Don't tell anyone, but what I've got 'ere is a jewel! A gem I tells ya! Done wiv some geezer called Vassilikos, 'ere's summing called Promise. Promise.

Promise - Marsheaux (mp3 Download)

Redesign... coming soon!!

I've been thinking about changing the design and template of worrapolava for a few weeks now. Tell a lie, since the day I set it up! I like the colours but hate header and the fonts on offer with this (numbered) template.

I'm actually in design for a living and it's always seemed too much of a busman's holiday to start reworking the visuals. But then I come across gorgeous blog headers like this and it makes me feel lazy and shame-faced.

(Have a look at the blog too. It's in French for those who can translate for themselves. For the rest of us, music is a universal language and this site speaks in many tongues).

Monday, 4 June 2007

You leave the room for 5 minutes...

...and look what happens:

1) The Strumpet of Sleaze releases a new album!

"Quick take the fookin picture, everyone in the Yard Bar is looking at me!"
I'm getting my copy of his new Stardom Road album tomorrow - check out XO's tender post. Me and Marc go back a long way, but I'll wait until his 50th birthday on July 9th - the day of his London concert - to do my proper post. Until then, here's a track from the Tenderness is a Weakness single and A Woman's Story EP. This was recorded live in an expensive studio but with a monkey on the mixing desk, the levels seem to go all over the shop. But the words, although written by someone else, are pure Marc fodder, camp, arch and a tale to tell.

The Heel - Marc Almond (mp3 Download)

2) Someone with a penis - probably very small - goes on Big Brother

"Love me, please. It's my last chance!"
A bloke called 'Ziggy' went into the nest of vipers on Friday. His total lack of personality meant that no one noticed. He used to be Zac in a boyband called Northern Line (not this one) and in pop mag circles used to be known as 'cat's arse mouth'.

3) Electroqueer has EXACTLY the same run-in with airport security as yourself

Gone. Forever.
See number 1. My half bottle of Marc Jacobs scent was swiped by some spotty 16 year old in Edinburgh, despite my swanning through Heathrow with it four days earlier. Sheesh. Oh, and I lost my phone on the plane but British Airways couldn't give a shizzle. Sheesh again.

4) The London Olympics 2012 logo was unveiled

And it's gone down like a cup of cold sick. One comment was that it looks like someone giving head. I like it. I'm not sure it'll still be on trend in five years' time, but at the mo', it's fab.