Thursday, 22 July 2010

Nozzle Know-How

To quote Banksy, the would be godfather of 21st Century graffiti, ‘so many people are willing to die for their art; so few are willing to learn how to draw.’ Yes indeed, who has not dreamt about stalking the streets of the East End under the cover of darkness and making their mark with a can of paint, but stayed at home for want of actual artistic ability? See, the trouble with tagging is that you can’t really practice at home (tried it once, landlord not impressed) before busting out on a bigger canvas/underpass/tube carriage. Well, to give you that much needed nozzle know-how, to fill you in on filling in, street artist Andy Seize is giving lessons. And, even if you’ve never picked up a paint can, don’t know your ear’ole from your aerosol, in just a few short hours he promises to turn you into a veritable Van Gogh of vandalism…

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Click, click, click...

Poetry is so hot right now. Rhyming things – or not – in verse is totally in. Forget goatee beards, a faint smell of nutmeg and clicking fingers as applause, the sonnet is officially on it. From the Southbank’s Year of the Poet to more street spoken wordists like Scroobius Pip, everyone’s a poet (and, yes, they very definitely do know it). But how should one separate the marvellously metronymic from the iambic pap? Well, getting yourself down to Chill Pill at Shoreditch’s Scream Bar is a fantastic start. Hosted by Mr. Gee, the Russell Brand Show’s poet laureate, it boasts all of the backstreet-basement, NYC vibe and none of the pretentiousness that can sometimes be associated with the avant garde. And with a door fee of absolutely nada, why drift in and get down with what’s happening tonight?

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The Dark Lord...

Oh Mandy, well you came and you gave without taking! Ok, ok, not exactly without taking; there was that Lordship. And that little expenses thing. Oh, and the moody mortgage and, who could forget, the pickle he got himself into over the Hindujas’ passport? But then, he has undoubtedly given too; how many people, let alone politicians, have come back from not one, but two resignations? Well, for good or for ill he is one third responsible for the New Labour project but, perhaps more importantly, he’s that rarest of things; an interesting politician. Interesting because he’s evil. Proper pantomime evil, when the Machiavellian Mandelson steps on stage the involuntary - and entirely appropriate - reaction of most is a boooo. And it is for being a bit of a baddie that we need you today, oh Mandy…

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Sunday, 11 July 2010

Viddy Well...

Some films are better suited to a smaller screen. Those that limp lamely straight on to the shelves of Tesco, for example; never even intended for bigger things – strictly for home consumption only – the purchaser’s shame easily hidden by a bunch of bananas. Then there are those which the watching of on anything smaller than the side of your house would be an out-and-out tragedy. Clockwork Orange is a film that belongs firmly in this latter category; it’s just too big, too much for a television set. Way too disturbing to cosy up with, ultra violence deserves an ultra-large screen. There’s also something kinda neat about being able to see something that was released in the seventies as part of a proper cinematic experience today, dontcha think? So, viddy well, my droogies, viddy well...

Bret Easton Ellis

What goes around, comes around. When Bret Easton Ellis wrote his disturbing cult classic, Less Than Zero, he was just 21. A shade over two decades later and, like the characters of his debut, who return for his hotly anticipated sequel Imperial Bedrooms, (free pub quiz ammunition: both of which are also the titles of Elvis Costello tracks), he’s all growed up. And, even if you’ve only seen the movie adaptations of his novels – like Rules of Attraction and American Psycho – you can hazard a guess that he’s done some pretty exciting growing up. Controversy abounds and whole novels written under the influence cement his place as one of the most interesting novelists of our generation. And if his thoughts are powerful on paper, just imagine what they’ll be like live and in the flesh...

Thursday, 1 July 2010

Craftwerk...

God damn it I need some new threads. Never mind credit crisis, I’m suffering from a severe clothing crisis. My wardrobe is in a state of depression directly proportional to that of the economy; on a graph with cool on the y axis and time on the x, my style is represented by a jagged line heading straight towards the bottom right hand corner. Even if I could get my hands on some credit for clobber, I’m at my desk every hour the good lord sends just to make rent; I’m working til I drop, not shopping. So thank the good lord, or at least the good people at Craft Central, for their Summer Pop Up Event. A recession-busting lunchtime fashion fix that showcases highly original designs made entirely out of unused materials kindly donated by their resident designers. So it’s as good for your carbon footprint as it is your pocket; green shoots all round, in fact…

www.lecool.com