Thursday, 24 December 2009

**Merry Christmas From Peaches**

**Girls of the Decade**

I've neglected doing this post for nearly a month now mainly because I felt my list was pretty predictable to anyone that's seen a post or two on this blog, but who cares I'll put it up anyway and if you think it's predictable you can tell me. I won't cry.

The rules of this list, yes there are rules, are that those featured have to have come to prominence in the last decade and they must have had a lasting effect on the world, or at least enough of an effect that it can be explained in written form.

Now that everything been explained let's get started...

I've loved Beyonce since I was shy little tween, this was before tween was a real word. I'm counting B in this list because she became a super influential star when she went solo.  For all her faults, the separation of Beyonce and Sasha Fierce to name a few, she is probably the greatest pop star of her generation and one that can wiggle her crotch at you without looking too dirty.  To quote the great Kanye West "Beyonce had one of the greatest videos of all time."

I previously discussed my annoyance with how criminally underrated M.I.A is and I'll say it again M.I.A is criminally underrated. 'Kala' was the stand out album of the last few years and saw Maya take over the world with her genre-bending, top tapping, worldtown beats.  She has sung about her feminist beliefs previously and has discussed her feelings to the haters who put her down.  M.I.A is the most aggressively political rapper out there who has not resided to rest on her talented laurels as many others have. She can do no wrong in my eyes.

Karen O
Karen O was my first love. I ignored all the spot ridden boys and focused all my shrinking violet energy onto Karen.  Her semi-violent, colourful outbursts turned my grey mundane life into array of colours.  Not only is she one of the best performers around today but she's also in an ever evolving, charismatic, super band. 

Lady Gaga
I've tried my hardest to figure out this girl.  She is a mass of contradictions. In a way she is an amazing pop star what with the stage costumes, grandiose performances and catchy tunes but she also lets us down sometimes.  Her shaky ideas of feminism and her reliance on sexuality make me slightly wary of her but she has still made an amazing impact on music in 2009 and for that reason deserves to be on this list.

Peaches is a true artist of the noughties. She came into our lives in 2000 like a filthy storm and blew us away with the cult hit 'Fuck the Pain Away'. More than just a one hit wonder she has stayed around the whole decade to entertain us with her sex-crazed, fun filled spectacular shows.

Beth Ditto
Beth is probably the woman who sums up this decade. To compensate for our society's sick obsession with thin women we developed a sick obsession with supposed 'real women'. This led to a sick obsession with one larger woman named Beth Ditto. The constant tabloid obsession would have destroyed a lesser woman but not Beth.  She has enough charm, personality and talent to brave the tabloid storm for now and probably another decade as well.

Wednesday, 23 December 2009


Peaches rolls with the crowd @ Koko

Above is the only picture I got from my night with Peaches. Not only because my camera is essentially just a broken metal box with flashing lights but mainly because the crowd were mental that night...well they're probably mental every night when it comes to Peaches.

I'm still a bit of a gig newbie to be honest. I've always been the sitting in my bedroom listening to my favourite band on repeat but not too loud so my parents don't hear kind of girl, so the rules of the gig world are still quite new to me.

Let me say one thing Peaches fans are amazing. I've never seen such a diverse crowd. There were electro kids, hipsters, punk rockers, indie boys, black, white, brown you name it they were there. Another thing to remember about Peaches fans is that they are crazy. They will drag you to the ground and step on your head just to get closer to her. I learnt this fact the hard way.

Peaches was of course amazing and she had at least five costume changes, or more I stopped counting half way through, one of which looked like a giant ball of hair.

The spectacular of her live show was everything I thought it would be including the hairy girls from the 'Talk to Me' video, pussy LED's, extravagant costumes, walking on the crowd and lots and lots of lasers.

The tunes were there too and after four albums Peaches had a lot to choose from and she chose well. The setlist included 'Boys Wanna Be Her', 'Fuck The Pain Away', 'Billionanire' with Shunda K rapping on a projector screen for Peaches to duet with and the rousing 'Set it Off'. I love how this song has evolved over time.

Below is Peaches singing 'Set it Off' in LA, I couldn't find any at KOKO and anyway she's singing with an inflatable motorbike and strap-on cleavage here.

Friday, 18 December 2009

Radio Killed The Video Star

A couple of weeks ago I started to get bored of my iTunes playlist. I needed something different to listen to but i didn't want to add anymore tracks to my ever increasing library. I still have songs from a couple of months ago that I haven't listened to properly yet.

Then I found, through Grrrl Sounds, the two Glaswegian boys of SPILL Radio who only play the best music that has been graced with the feminine touch.

I was really inspired by this and it made me realise how little mainstream radio plays female music. There are rarely two within half an hour and never back to back.

This led me to seek out other radio stations or podcasts that feed my, and many others, need for girl noise. Here are a list of the best radio shows serving the grrrl community.
Run by two guys from Glasgow, any requests for music by men gets immediately chucked out and a Le Tigre record goes on immediately to make up for the idea that boys would get played on their show. Their Chick Rap show inspired my Lady Rap Mixtape. There is always a theme to each broadcast along with a few games too.

Venus Radio
Our search for lady-loving radio shows takes us to the Montreal-based Venus radio show. Hosted by the lovely Anna and Catherine Venus takes us through the best indie girl music. Anna and Catherine are my kind of girls stating that they want to meet 'ladies, girls, grrrls, bitches, dames, broads, chicks, les filles, sisters, women, wimmin, wymyn, hos, hollaback girls, sistas, lesbros, mujares, and those from the planet Venus'. The show is broadcast on CKUT 90.3 FM but you can stream it online here.

Suck My Left One
There are so many Riot Grrrl related groups that use the infamous Bikini Kill song as their title that its a bit hard to distinguish one from the other except for the subcity radio show that is. Suck My Left One play records from the sixities girl groups to noughties electroclash artists. Taking the Riot Grrl movement as a starting off point Suck My Left One seeks to 'unearth new music from queers, grrrls, zinesters, punks, freaks and electro-geeks carrying the torch of Revolution Girl Style Now!'

Sisters of Revolution
Sisters of Revolution is a California based radio show hosted by an English Riot Grrrl. The show is described as being about 'frenzied female noises, sonic melodies, thrashing beats - celebration and feminist fury'. It seems that Sisters of revolution have taken a break from broadcasting but fear not you can still download past broadcasts online from here.

Courtney Love + Kurt Cobain = Lyrical Equals

Over at my new favourite online mag The Quietus, there is a great post about how Courtney Love's lyrics stood up to her late husband's Kurt Cobain.

I was one of the many who never took much interest in Courtney Love but had still managed to come to the conclusion that she was an awful musician.

That all changed when I heard Live Through This. As soon as I heard the opening chords of Violet I was convinced that Courtney Love was indeed an amazing lyricist.

Trailer: The Runaways Movie

It looks like the much talked about Runaways movie is getting that little bit closer to release.

A trailer has been released, a very short one, for the movie and it looks like it's going to be a good one.

I for one can't wait.

MIA Makes Indie Lads Turn Into Misogynistic Trolls

Despite making the album of the decade, in my opinion, conquering America and introducing otherwise apathetic music lovers to world politics the idea of MIA being the artist of the decade is inconprehensible to some.

As part of the Notes on the Noughties series in The Guardian, Simon Reynolds questioned whether MIA could in fact be the artist that best represented the noughties. Note that I wrote QUESTIONED because that is all the article did. MIA does not feature highly on any of the millions of countdown lists that have sprung up recently.

Despite this fact the comments are filled with trolls disgusted at the idea a woman could be an influential force on the music scene today.

Instead they repeated well known myths used against every woman in rock. She's just a pretty girl, she doesn't write her own songs, she's all about the image, she wouldn't be anything without him... blah blah blah.

Let's bust some of those misogynistic myths today shall we:

She doesn't write her own songs
MIA has, does and always will write her own songs. She sings from a female perspective a lot of the time and I can always tell whether songs like that were written by men. Hers were not.

She owes her success to Diplo
Diplo produced a couple of tracks and was involved in the Piracy Funds Terrorism mixtape but that was it really. How could a guy from Philly invoke the third-world, party, political mashup that MIA has. She has done it because she lives it.

She's just a hipster who's only known for wearing funny clothes
MIA started with no particular style when she first came onto the scene. She would perform in a t-shirt and jeans skirt and still be cool. Now she has transformed that cool into day glow catsuits and multi-coloured sunglasses and she's no better or worse for it.

Her 'pseudo-political schtick' is just to look cool
This was an actual comment on the article. My only response to that is you think that living her childhood in a country going through a civil war, experiencing life in Britain as an immigrant first hand and having a father that's part of the rebel Tamil Tigers means she's only doing it for the shock value.

Americans only bought her political message because she's 'asian'
Another actual comment on the article that manages to be both racist and xenophobic at the same time.

Her songs just aren't good
Errrr... They are. They just are. Sometimes I think people just put their fingers in their ears when a female artist comes on the scene. It's the only explanation for this because everyone knows MIA is the future.

Sunday, 13 December 2009

*MIXTAPE ALERT* It's That Time of Year Again

I'm going to be honest I'm not as proud of this mix as I have been of others, I think I peaked with lady rap.

It's hard to find good christmas songs, especially when you lose a whole gender's work to select from. This is probably the only time I'll complain about wanting to her more guy music. I promise this would be the only time.

Anyway here is my short, but sweet mix for the special day that comes but once a year.

If this does not meet your christmas mixtapes needs then I would suggest you head over to
Everett True's Christmas song list on his blog. It's a lot longer for one thing.

1. Christmas (Baby Please Come Home)- Darlene Love
2. All I Want For Christmas- Yeah Yeah Yeahs
3. Just For Now- Imogen Heap
4. Christmas Is Cancelled- The Long Blondes
5. Christmas Medley- Destiny's Child
6. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year- Martha Wainwright
7. Christmas- Beat Happening
8. All I Want For Christmas Is You- Mariah Carey

The Cribs Are Very Lovely Blokes

The Cribs have showed time and time again that they are lovers of the ladies.

The Wakefield boys were on the verge of cancelling their gig at the Donchester Dome after their support act, the inspirational Slits, started to get abuse from the crowd.

A few beered up lads at the front decided to put on, as the Cribs described it, a "disgustingly chauvinistic display of small-mindedness."

The band stated: "The thing that bothered us most is that this reception can't possibly have been anything to do with the music," they said. "Also, just to make it clear, these people [crowd members throwing items] didn't bother or upset The Slits in any way. They played on, and the show of unity from the rest of the bands on the bill, as well as the way The Slits carried themselves, was not only a moral victory but also pretty moving."

What did the Slits do during all this drama. They kept playing like the pros they are and branded the perpatrators as "dickheads with the loudest mouths".

I love these girls.

Click here to read more.

Friday, 4 December 2009

**UNDER COVER** I'm Just About To Lose My Mind

GIG REVIEW: Yeah Yeah Yeahs @ Brixton Academy 30/11/09

YYYs at T in the Park BBC

It’s fair to say that Yeah Yeah Yeahs are one of my favourite bands of all time. I’ve wanted to see them live since I was a wee girl in Wolverhampton and now I’m a wee woman who has put all her hopes and dreams into the band standing before her.

Basically YYYs had a lot to live up to when I went to see them for the first time. A decade long build up is a hard thing to live up to but they did obviously. It’s the Yeah Yeah Yeahs what else would they do.

Everything was there, ready, in place for this girl to go crazy. Brian was keeping the beat going with his hard hitting drumming style frantically battling against a drum machine, Nick was stalking the corner of the stage looking cool and Karen was yelping and throwing herself around the stage like the old days.

Either the guys knew a lot of their older fans would be attendance or they just loved playing their rare songs ‘cause both the 10x10 and the even rarer Shake It made it onto the setlist.

The band had spared no expense on special effects so glitter fell from the ceiling and giant eyeballs careered through the crowd. It was great at first but got a little distracting after a while. The band has come to a place in their career where they shouldn’t have to rely on cheap effects to get the crowd going.

The highlight of the night had to be Karen’s ritual dedication of Maps to the audience. The band eased their way into a slowed down, sparse version of the well known classic that caused couples throughout the crowd, including one right in front of me, to lock lips for no reason. Well, no reason except for love that is.