Thursday, December 9


. Thursday, December 9

Two and a bit years ago I was fresh out of University and back living at home in Scarborough, North Yorkshire. Looking for work and increasingly lonely I turned to the internet for something contructive to do. I decided, as a young journalist, that I would post all of my published work onto a blog and create an online portfolio. Indeed, if you check the very early posts of this blog you will find a review of CSS's second album (where are they now?).

That plan soon mutuated though as I discovered the world of blogs properly and realised I could create my own world with little more than a broadband connection and a keen pair of ears. Running this blog between September of that year and July 2009, posting anything and everything daily, gave me a purpose and was a welcome distraction from the four walls I was increasingly staring at.

Eventually, I moved to London (not by the sea) and found work (not boring). Things became less frequent and more organisation had to be used in order to continue the running of posts etc but still - it was what I wanted to do. I knew then though that the time to wind things up would come sooner rather than later.

So, it is today that I'm quitting the blog game and getting out while I still enjoy it. Blogs are brilliant and bloggers are brilliant but I no longer have the time to post and cover everything I'd like to, aggregating all of the great videos, MP3's and new band links, nor was I ever really someone who would dig something out of nowhere and shine some much needed light on it. My time is now taken up by running a website full time and writing for magazines, neither of which I could do without the skills I learned as a blogger. I don't want to run a half arsed blog, I don't want people to prefer the early work, I don't want to be the blog Morrissey.

I hope any regular readers enjoyed my ramblings on this platform that became way more than I ever expected it too. To quote James Murphy, take me off your mailing list, and (if you don't already) I urge you to spend time on wonderful blogs such as Fucking Dance, Abeano, Gorilla Vs Bear, Transparent, Pinglewood, Disco Naivete, Sweeping The Nation, Surfing On Steam, Nialler9 and Music Fans Mic.

If you're interested in my work then head to my day job or check out my online portfolio on Tumblr. I'm available on Twitter too if you want to get links of funny looking dogs sent your way.


David xx


Wednesday, December 8


. Wednesday, December 8

More cliched blog action today in the shape of the ten acts I'd like to see do well in the coming year. For a bit of context, last year I tipped Everything Everything, Veronica Falls, Frankie & The Heartstrings, Dum Dum Girls and Lost Knives. Two have gone on to release superb albums, two have cemented their position as the most exciting new bands in Britain and look set to release brilliant debut albums in 2011 and one band split up - bastards. So, with the chances are that two of these ten acts won't see out the year, here are my tips for 2011...

James Blake

Having spent 2010 making some of the most ground-breaking, heart-swelling music to emerge in years James Blake now finds himself about to release his vocally led, mellow album. If his cover of Feist's Limit To Your Love' is anything to go by then his February due album will be spellbinding.

Trophy Wife

One of the leading lights of Oxford's Blessing Force movement, Trophy Wife line up alongside their peers Chad Valley, Rhosyn and Pet Moon as the new face of esoteric indie. Expect many 'boffin' and Morse references to follow them around 2011.

Odd Future

As likely to implode as explode, Odd Future stalk the internet like the unruly teens they are. Innovative, exciting, controversial and prone to getting grounded Odd Future's stable of young hip-hop artists are just the disruption that the status-quo of music needs in the coming year.


Twee? You bet. Beautiful? Even more so. Having written their debut album whilst sailing up and down the West Coast of America, the married couple that comprise Tennis blend the blazing nostalgia of their lo-fi contemporaries with the pretty elegance of Swedish pop. Tennis @

Jai Paul

A relative recluse, Rainers Lane resident Jai Paul takes the crate digging nature of music obsessives and combines it with the patchwork of cultural influences his label mate M.I.A made sound so vital on her albums Arular and Kala. Just one demo exists online right now but these ears have heard more and urge you to prepare for something very exciting indeed.

Esben & The Witch

Dramatic, windswept and elegant - Esben & The Witch are a band that need to be seen live to believe in. Expect them to spend the next twelve months making headline acts look sheepish and generally be shaking the foundations of everything in between.

Still Corners

Spectral beauty from this brand new London band. There is very little to go on right now but the elegance and hazy charm of 'Endless Summer' could see them becoming Britains answer to Beach House or Grizzy Bear.

Echo Lake

Similar to Still Corners, Echo Lake are dewy eyed even in band terms and will hopefully spend 2011 becoming a more assured and confident band. The lacerated grace of their early demos suggest that they could soon become vital.

Idiot Glee

Shattered doo-wop from Stateside loner complete with heart-warming qualities. Idiot Glee sounds like one mans quest for a hug, you suspect he might have more than a few offers in the next stage of his career.

Girl Unit

Wut? Heavy loaded bass act from London. With James Blake ditching his pitch-shifter to become the new Gary Barlow, South London's Girl Unit looks set to step into his spot and craft some of the most insistant and heavy, chrome plated sounds around.

Obviously ten is never enough so do keep ears, eyes and Save Target As fingers primed for the likes of Anna Calvi, Katy B, Whiz Kalifa, Cults, Jay Electronica, Joker, Yelawolf, J. Cole, Wu Lyf, The Neat, Cults, Korralreven and Factory Floor as well as the debut albums from Yuck, Active Child, Summer Camp, Twin Sister, Frankie and The Hearstrings and Veronica Falls.


Tuesday, December 7


. Tuesday, December 7

Same as yesterday but shorter, the ten best songs of 2010. All of these plus many, many more can be found on the Spotify playlist. Subscribe and validate my OCD list making tendencies...

Big Boi - Shutterbug
Robyn - Dancing On My Own
Gold Panda - Snow & Taxis
Ariel Pink's Haunted Graffiti - Round and Round
Caribou - Odessa
James Blake - CMYK
Janelle Monae - Tightrope
Blur - Fool's Day
Kanye West - Monster



Monday, December 6


. Monday, December 6

It's that time of year again, I could strip this over a week (or even month) but I'll save your RSS feeds and avoid that. Here are my ten favourite albums of the past twelve months. Obviously there are many, many more albums I've enjoyed though and you can find a full list of the best records of the year on this Spotify playlist. Not everything is on Spotify though (damn you Sub Pop) so here are notable mentions to those not being streamed online: Dum Dum Girls, Avi Buffalo, Mount Kimbie, Male Bonding and No Age. Sorry I'm so white.

Albums of 2010

Kanye West - My Beautiful, Dark, Twisted Fantasy
Arcade Fire - The Suburbs
LCD Soundsystem - This Is Happening
These New Puritans - Hidden
Yeasayer - Odd Blood
Sleigh Bells - Treats
Best Coast - Crazy For You
Los Campesinos! - Romance Is Boring
Wild Nothing - Gemini
Foals - Total Life Forever


Wednesday, December 1

Cerebral Ballzy Q+A

. Wednesday, December 1

Last week I headed out on a cold Monday evening to watch Cerebral Ballzy play in Camden, thus missing episode 4 of The Trip. I wouldn't normally pass up the chance to see Steve Coogan and Rob Brydon try impression each other off screen whilst eating expensive food but then not every band name themselves after a physical disability. Suffice to say, CB owned the stage and even got a kid called George on stage with them to party - nothing special there besides the fact he was on crutches. An impressive sight if ever there was one. I caught up with lead singer Honor to learn a bit more about his band.

How are you guys finding Britain?

Honor: Well we found it already. The plane brought us here. Its been wicked rad though. Tonsa fun/ super cold.

Is it easier to skip subway fairs in New York or London?

H: Well it depends: You have to check out on both sides at most stations in London rather than NY's only upon entry. New York has low turnstiles as compared to London's chest high gate thing. New York has twatnugget cops as compared to Londons really nice/ passive bobbies. I've been
caught in both and in London they don't do shit but I've done it a billion times in NY soooooo i'ma give it to NY.

What are the main differences you find between the UK and the US?

H: I feel as if there's this gentile/ humane/ polite/ reasonable reasoning instilled in British culture that America lacks. There is a definite respect and establishment of history in the UK where as the US is full of makeshift pop-up bullshit. America's confrontational and England's really not.

Your live show is pretty full on, what injuries are you all currently

H: Abe's got a really bizarre rash (not on his junk), I chipped a tooth the other night, Jasons hand looks like mince meat from play guitar like a fucking nutcase, and Masons hand is swollen after a
fight we had after our release show (he also just got outta jail).

What does a typical day in the life of Cerebral Ballzy entail?

H: Hunger, girls, illegal activities, tonsa giggling, skating if the weathers right, BEER, Slayer at some point in the day.

What's the worst reaction anybody has ever had to your name?

H: Nothing too gnarly. Just alotta "what?" and "really?" customs sucks with it tho.

Your band motto seems to be 'Drink. Skate. Puke.' Would you agree that
is the best order in which to do those things?

H: Depends on the night. If im trying to skate for realz, I'm not gonna trashed beforehand. If I feel like shit from a hangover i might wanna puke beforehand. Sometimes i even puke before drinking.

What are your plans for 2011? ?

H: Finish an album which'll be SUPERRAD. we'll be touring hard (as usual) and be sure to come hang out with us. We just released a single on Moshi Moshi. EXPECT TO SEE US ALOT CAUSE WERE A COMIN.

Cerebral Ballzy's new single 'Insufficient Fare' is out now via Moshi Moshi.

Img: Alex De Mora.


Monday, November 29


. Monday, November 29

Music sounds better with a Jamie xx remix.


Saturday, November 27

For The Record: November

. Saturday, November 27

November is the month that Winter officially bites and all the indie acts hibernate for the year, leaving the big boys to release their stuff. As you might have heard, Kanye West put out his fifth album 'My Beautiful, Dark, Twisted Fantasy'. Suffice to say, it's pretty incredible. With retrospect the over-blown nature of much of the album could well sound ridiculous but I haven't listened to anything else in the two weeks since I was sent the album. Album of the year? It's an instant contender.

November's best releases:

Kanye West - My Beautiful, Dark Twisted Fantasy (Album of the Month)
Robyn - Body Talk Pt. 3
Nicki Minaj - Pink Friday
Chad Valley - Chad Valley EP
Twin Shadow - Forget
Girls - Broken Hearts Club EP
Yelawolf - Trunk Musik 0-60
Rihanna - Loud
Cee-Lo Green - The Ladykiller
Becoming Real - Spectre EP
Mellowhype - Blackenedwhite


Saturday, November 6


. Saturday, November 6

Just a quick one this week, seems to have been a bit quiet one for everyone bar Lil' Wayne anyway.

aaaaaaahhhhhhmmmmm baaaaakkkkkkkkkkless than a minute ago via web

Patrick Wolf is back though! Check out his new, optimistic fop-pop on Time Of My Life below:

  • The very excellent Veronica Falls are offering up their new song 'Right Side Of my Brain' on their official website.
  • The Drums got remixed by Twin Shadow, remain nice but a bit dull.
  • Eminem and Nicki Minaj got their alter ego's together to make the offensive head smash that is 'Roman's Revenge'. It's brilliantly brutal.
  • Warpaint made the cover of NME and also recorded a session for the very great Yours Truly website. This is 'Undertow' from said session.


Wednesday, November 3


. Wednesday, November 3

To most ears 'Weekend' is still pretty damn lo-fi but having listened to the serrated edges and all encompassing fuzz of Smith Westerns debut album, well this new song sounds positively crystal. The first track to be taken from their Fat Possum debut, 'Weekend' sees Smith Westerns embrace their glam tendencies and adorn them with feather boas and a glittering pair of platforms whilst still retaining a certain slacker charm. Can you be glam and stoned at the same time? If so this is the sound of it.

'Dye It Blonde' will be Smith Western's gift to 2011 and hopefully one of the years first great albums. To have a listen to just what the boys have been spending their label money and studio time on then take a listen below.


Monday, November 1


. Monday, November 1

So, being light of pocket shall we say means that I have seen a lot of what X Factor has to offer up these past four Saturday nights. I'm far from a hater of the show, it lives in it's own crazy world and it's a fascinating one to peer into. Plus, in the modern age of fractured lives and time-shifting television schedules the very notion of a huge, nation-uniting show blazing a trail is pretty incredible.

The thing about the show however is that it sets its own standard and you forget there is a world outside of it. Thus average performers can 'smash it' and someone like Wagner becomes a fans favourite. It is only when a proper popstar visits the show is the talent gulf made clear. Two years ago it was when Beyonce sang with a then hopeful Alexandra Burke and exuded the 'diva' quality Simon Cowell and co. often talk about but never really see and this weekend it happened again with Rihanna.

Performing her simple but deadly new single 'Only Girl (In The World)' Rihanna asserts herself as the coolest and exciting popstar operating today. This performance, taken from yesterdays Result show, simultaneously shows Rihanna proving why X Factor is such a fun show to watch but also how it is flawed karaoke for amateurs who can only dream of starting a food fight on stage as their fourteenth single crashes into the charts.


Sunday, October 31


. Sunday, October 31

Hello. A bit late again but here goes with another round up of all the new music from the past week you need to get through this hungover Sunday.

First up, the big news. Boring By The Sea is on the long list for Best Blog at the Record Of The Day awards. If you'd like to validate me and vote then the link is here. If not then do consider the far better Transparent, Pinglewood and Abeano. On a side note, I've not been nominated for any of the writing awards which I can only assume means I am getting the Lifetime Achievement award - a bit early some may say but I'll take it.

Lykke Li is BACK. Hear her rather dirty new song 'Get Some' in exchange for an email over at her website.

Diplo has taken a break from making Blackberry adverts to promote this Gallows remix his own gang of young rebels, Rolo Tomassi. Hear that here.

Jessie J could well be huge next year, get a hold of this Jakwob remix and then track down the original because it's a lot better and a whole less 'isn't dubstep cool' if you know what I mean.

Caribou got 'Swim' remixed by a whole load of similarly amazing, technical types. Check it out below...

Girls are releasing an EP as a follow up to their 2009 record 'Album'. It's called 'Broken Dreams Club' which is already a step up from their previously meta titling process.

Esben and The Witch, what a band. Grab their new track 'Warpath' from the bands official site and pencil their album 'Violet Cries' into your best of 2011 list now.

Track of the week for me is Crystal Castles teaming up with Jo Brand, sorry Robert Smith for a remix of their cover of 'Not In Love'. This is just perfect, someone get Ethan producing the next Cure album stat.

Also worth a listen is Girl Unit's new one 'Wut'.

Yuck and La Sera have made new music videos. Both are very nice and viewable here and here respectively.

Trophy Wife, they're from Oxford therefore are a BIG DEAL in late 2010. Nevermind that though, they're great and the acoustic version of their new single 'Microlite' is rather excellent too.

If Katy B isn't having her own X Factor theme week this time next year then something has gone badly wrong, check out her new video below.

Img: Maran Celeste


Wednesday, October 27

For The Record: October

. Wednesday, October 27

So 2010 feels like it is winding down already. People are planning Christmas parties, end of year polls are being compiled and yet there are two whole months of the year left. October has been a big month for album releases and whilst it lacks the A-List pulling power of November (Kanye, Rihanna) there is more than enough to get your teeth into here.

Album of the month this month has to go to Warpaint for their stunning debut 'The Fool'. If you're a fan of spectacular melodies and brain frying psych meanderings then I can't recommend it highly enough. To stream the album then do click here.

October's highlights.

Warpaint - The Fool (Album of the month)
James Blake - Klavierwerk EP
Tinie Tempah - The Disc-Overy
Magnetic Man - Magnetic Man
Gold Panda - Lucky Shiner
Kisses - Kisses
Spectrals - EP
Sufjan Stevens - Age Of Adz
Antony & The Johnsons - Swanlights
Belle & Sebastian -Write About Love


Monday, October 25


. Monday, October 25

Putting aside their shlock name for one moment Cerebral Ballzy are one of the most confrontational yet fun bands to emerge in some time, seemingly skating the rail between feral anger and drunken partying perfectly. Based in New York the band have only been to the UK once this year but that stay saw their trip extended when they were invited to play Reading and Leeds festivals in addition to their support slot with Canadian punks Fucked Up. The band return to our shores in late November to play with Trash Talk, probably the best live band I've seen all year.

Cerebral Ballzy have one EP to date which, to quote a source inside the bands camp "sounds like it was recorded in a shed". However, up next for the band is 'Insufficient Fare', a single release via Moshi Moshi. With Boris Johnson raising the minimum spend on the tube yet again this song is about as topical as it gets though I strongly suspect this was not what was not in Cerebral Ballzy's heads when they wrote the track.

To listen to the Black Flag/ Bad Brains style ramshackle carnage of 'Insufficient Fare' have a look below.


Friday, October 22


. Friday, October 22

Hello and welcome to the new music round up column that will assemble a forty man mob outside your home if you don't like what I've got to say.

Biggest and saddest news of the week is that Ari Up of The Slits has passed away. R.I.P. a true punk icon. (Guardian)

Elsewhere, Laura Marling is apparently the coolest person in the world according to NME. She replied by deciding not to release her planned new album. She's cool like that.

In the world of hyped up Northern bands, D/R/U/G/S hits us with two killer remixes. One for Twin Sister and another for their brothers in arms, Egyptian Hip-Hop.

Pinglewood, one of my favourite blogs, posted this excellent Ariel Pink tribute podcast including covers of the man's songs from blog favourites Echo Lake and Visions Of Trees. Check it out here.

Willow Smith made everyone look very old with her 'Whip My Hair' video/ meme factory.

In the world of embeddable music you can hear right now, Liars have got a remix from Thom Yorke which you can file under 'this will impress bearded critics'

Cocknbullkid is edging ever closer to actually releasing some bloody music with this fine remix/ covers package including Kele and Marina re-works:

Becoming Real gave us a taste of his upcoming EP with this free download called 'South London Congo'.

And finally, one of my favourite songs of the year finally has a video to accompany it. Take a look at Best Coast and her 'Boyfriend'. Have a great weekend.

Img: Dasha Riabchenko


Wednesday, October 20


. Wednesday, October 20

Now, I don't like to brag but I first wrote about Trophy Wife waaay before the blogs blew up over his new single 'Microlite' last month. Anyone would think I just followed Foals on Twitter and wrote about their recommendations but I like to think of myself as more like an indie Inspector Morse, snooping out the finest Oxford has to offer.

I also wrote about Pet Moon too and whilst I'm loathe to make this post about some sort of Oxford scene (I'm sure that's been cooked up in a magazine office as we speak) it certainly seems that there are a lot of bands emerging from the sleepy, academic city.

Loosely grouped under the collective name of Blessing Force, these bands are based in Oxford and often writing and recording in the basement/ studio where Foals wrote this years 'Total Life Forever'.

Many of these Blessing Force associated bands, including Chad Valley come from the fall out from mid-noughties bands like Youthmovies and Jonquil. Hugo Manuel is a member of the latter and is also the man behind the samplers and is crafting a very English take on the sepia tinted sounds of Toro Y Moi and Washed Out. Have a listen to his track 'Portugese Solid Summer' below:

Then there is Fixers who combine the floaty, ephemeral qualities of Animal Collective with a broad and epic scope that could see them break out and become a properly big deal. Or sell four albums and play a few Barfly shows, whatever. They're great.

Also tied up in this big collective, creative free for all are Solid Gold Dragons, Neon Pulse and Rhosyn who are all well worth checking out.

Finally, this is the new Trophy Wife track mentioned earlier. Released via Moshi Moshi in November the track got its official video this week which looks like this:

Img: Maran Celeste