Thursday, 25 August 2011

Sebastian Kellig, Nick McCarthy und Hank Schmidt In Der Beek - Lunsen-Ring

Sebastian Kellig, Nick McCarthy und Hank Schmidt In Der Beek - Lunsen-Ring.
This is a record made by Seb, who I have known for over ten years, and his friends Nick and Hank. The record came about because Hank, who is an artist from Munich, wrote a book of poetry in German all about sleep and going to bed and because Seb and Nick (his friends from when they all lived in Munich) are musicians they all decided to form a group to make music to go with the poems and to make this record at Nick's studio which is called Sausage Studios and is in Hackney.
          The record starts off with a big fanfare and then Hank starts by reciting one of his poems in German before the music starts and Hank starts singing, also in German, Hank has a shouty singing voice a bit like you hear in punk music. In between the different poems on this first track everybody sings "La La La La," this happens a lot on this record and makes it very good singalong music. The first song goes into the second song which is more lively with big guitars and more La la la's - it reminds me a bit of The Who who I like a lot especially My Generation which I have on a 7" Single. After this there is a nice soft song played on an xylophone with a girl singing on it, the girl singing is Sarah, Seb's girlfriend, who also plays violin on the record and sings on some of the other songs - Sarah has a interesting soft voice and sounds good on this song. The fourth track sounds a bit like a country song with Sarah on violin and Hank and Nick playing recorders, they play their recorders very well. The next song has Hank and Sarah talking in German, Hank is teaching Sarah to speak German but Sarah doesn't get it right because German is a bit complicated, the music on this song starts of with slow drums and keyboards but the music gets very fast by the end.
             Side two of the record starts with Sebastian playing his Oud which is an Arabic instrument like a guitar, then middle eastern drums comes in and Sarah again on violins; it is a very nice arabic sounding song leads to the next song which is much faster with lots of fast drumming and very quick keyboard playing from Nick which reminds me of Jewish party music. The next song starts off with everybody singing without instruments in traditional German style then drums start and everybody starts shouting and it all sounds a bit like Piccadilly Circus - You can see interesting video of this song at the start of thes video below which is of a concert of this record in Munich in May this year.

           The next song starts with a whistle from an old steam train and is a fast country song with a very good guitar solo in it and this is followed by a slower shouty song with more La la la's in it - I like all the La la la's on this record. The second to last song starts off slow before getting faster with even more La La la's, we have made a video of part of this song which you can see below - we made the video at the Gate to help Nick, Seb and Hank out.

             The last song sounds a bit like a church choir or maybe like some Hawaiian singers, there is no guitar on it or other instruments just people singing, it is a very good way to end the record.
             Overall I would say this is a very good record with very good music on it, I would give it 10 out of 10.

Peter with Seb & Nick - Dec 2011.

Wednesday, 17 August 2011

Nochexxx - Savage Herald / Charro

Nochexxx - Savage Herald / Charro (Ramp Recordings)
This is another electronica recording that was sent to me by Nochexxx himself to listen to. The music is from a twelve inch single with two songs on it that he has released but I am listening to it on the computer.
          Nochexxx is a musician from Cambridge who makes electronic music on synthesizers which is a bit like Actress's who I have reviewed before but Nochexxx's music seems to be a bit more Jazzy.
          The first track Savage Herald starts off with a heartbeat and reminds me of a machine in hospital when you are fighting for your life, there is also a keyboard there and then the drums come in and the music becomes very funky before a voice starts going "Woooo Wooooo" a bit like indians do when they are attacking cowboys in a western film. The song changes a lot with different keyboard bits and drumbeats coming in making it more interesting. I liked this song very much.
Thumbs up to Nochexxx.
          The other track Charro is a bit faster with drums which remind me of clapping and funny sounding keyboards which remind me of eighties music that I used to hear on the television, occasionally voices comes in like kids shouting "yeah!" at a birthday party. We have parties here at the Gate where our band plays and everyone dances, I think this song would go down well at one of our parties because it's a happy sounding song that I think everyone here would like.   
          Overall I thought Nochexxx's music was very good indeed and I am very happy that I was sent it to listen to and would like to thank Nochexxx very much, I am going to get it put on a CD so I can listen to it again. I would give this record 10 out of 10.

Friday, 12 August 2011

Box Codax - Hellabuster

Hellabuster is the second album by Box Codax - Box Codax are Manuela Gernedel who I know because she works here at The Gate doing art groups, her husband Nick McCarthy who played the keyboards here last halloween when we had a party (I sang The Monster Mash) and Alexander Ragnew from Munich who I have not met.
Manuela and Nick at our halloween party. 
          The first song is called Hellabuster and has piano on it like John Lennon plays at the beginning of Imagine. It sounds a bit like The Beatles but also very modern, it is a happy sounding song and a good start to the CD. The next song, Seven Silvers, is sung mainly by Manuela and sounds like seventies disco, it is a fast song and seems to be a story about a boyfriend and girlfriend who are falling in love because the chorus says "Can't get you out of my mind." A lot of the songs on the CD are about a relationship and i think the songs are telling a story about love and about how hard it is sometimes to be in a relationship. The next song for example seems to be about a man not being able to sleep because he is worried about his girlfriend who is not with him. After this song is a funny song called Choco Pudding, i watched the video for this on the Hellabuster website, where you can also see videos for some of the other songs on the CD, it made made me laugh but also feel a bit sick because the man in the video sings with a mouth full of chocolate pudding. Pour Moi, the next song, has a deep man's voice singing on it and a high woman's voice which sounds like a kid singing, it is a sad sounding song about nightmares - I don't have nightmares much because i have trouble sleeping but I did once have a nightmare once where I went to the beach on holiday and drowned when i went for a swim. After this is faster, rockier song with shouting in it like somebody who is cross because his wife or girlfriend has left and after that a slower song with Manuela singing on it which also sounds a bit sad; Manuela has a nice, very girly voice a bit like Jane Birkin and this song reminds me a bit of Je T'aime by her and Serge Gainsbourg. The next song is another sad song about broken hearts after a relationship has broken up. The song starts out very slow but more starts happening around the middle with the vocals turning into shouts about learning to live with a broken heart. 
           After all these sad songs things get a bit more happy with the next song Sandy Moffat, the 
This song has a good video which you can see here, the video was made by German artist Hank Schmidt in der Beek who I met when he came to The Gate to star in the Video Drama episode The Druggies Next Door which you can see below. Hank has also made a record with Nick from Box Codax and Sebastian who works here at The Gate and I will be reviewing that too soon.

          Next up is a slow song with acoustic guitar and violin and occasionally trumpets, it is a song about friendship - it is good to have friends because they help you with stuff and you can go the the pub and buy drinks for one another, I meet my friends every monday night and we go to different pubs around Shepherds Bush and Hammersmith. The next song is another slow one and is about Bedrooms and the things people do in bedrooms and then there is a faster song which sounds a bit like a reggae song, Manuela sings in this one about sleeping and dreaming. The last song uses the same words as Seven Silvers but is much slower, it's funny how they have done this and a good way to end the CD. 
          Overall I think this is a very good album and I hope many people will buy it. I would like to thank Manuela and Nick for sending me the CD and congratulations to them too. I would give this CD 10 out of 10.

Monday, 1 August 2011

Actress - Harrier ATTK / Gershwin (& Roy Orbison - The Actress)

Actress - Harrier ATTK / Gershwin (Nonplus)
This record is a twelve inch single with two songs on it by electronica music maker Actress also known as Darren Cunningham from South Norwood, SE25. I've not really listened to much electronica before because most of the music I listen to is guitar music from the sixties. Electronica music is music made with synthesisers, drum machines, keyboards and computers and is made mostly for dancing to in discotheques but you can listen to it at home too.
          The first song Harrier ATTK is a slow moving, repetitive track with soft sounds like rain falling or electricity coming through the wires or maybe like there is a crack in the record but I think it is supposed to sound like that. In the background there are other sounds which reminds me of the noises in a telephonists room in an big old office building. I like this piece of music and it would be good to fall asleep to as it is very relaxing and would make you sleep well; it is not really music you could dance to though.
          The other song is called Gershwin; George Gershwin was a composer who composed hit musicals like South Pacific and Porgy and Bess but this track is nothing like what Gershwin would write. It is a faster song than Harrier ATTK and more like something you could dance to as it is very jazzy. The main sounds in this track are noisy electronic drums but there is also electronic pianos in there too and perhaps this is why it is called Gershwin as Gershwin was also a pianist as well as a composer.
          Overall I would say that I thought that both of these songs were very nice to listen to and i would like to listen to more music by Actress and to more electronica. I would give this record 10 out of 10.

Roy Orbison - The Actress
By coincidence, my favourite song at the moment is The Actress by Roy Orbison. Roy Orbison was a very good songwriter and a singer that I like very much whose first record was Ooby Doobie in 1956. Oobie Doobie was a rock and roll record but Roy soon started making more sentimental music like Only the Lonely in 1960 and Dream Baby in 1962, The Actress was the B-side of Dream Baby. Roy Orbison died in 1988 aged 52 and this is a great shame because a lot of people liked him and will miss him. The Actress is a very sad song about a woman who is pretending to love the singer but doesn't love him really. So here is "The Big O" himself singing this great hit of his, I hope you all enjoy it: