The Fantastic Snooty Fox

This past weekend was spent attending a couple of events for the Wakefield Folk Festival; this did not limit the range of the bands playing however, I saw a total of three bands and one solo artist, although that was a completely different and unexpected performance altogether…

The majority of the performances were on Friday night, in The Snooty Fox, a pub venue with a cosy stage space to the front. The bar itself was, thankfully, against the norm of typical pub conventions on this night, the main area of the bar being completely dominated by ticket holders anticipating The Doonan Family Band, the main act of the night.

I was introduced to Matt Abbott shortly after arriving at The Snooty Fox who, it turned out, was the lead singer and guitarist of the band Skint & Demoralised. An Indie-ish band with a penchant for Matt’s spoken word lyrics during the verses. Skint & Demoralised, Matt told me, were in the process of switching record labels for whatever reasons, meaning he would only be performing his self styled ‘punk poetry’ tonight, which I was already curious to hear! After discussing his band, and the music industry in general, I sat down with Matt and the others to watch.

To begin the performances, an Irish woman played accoustic guitar, with the aid of her band… For the life of me, I cannot remember the name of the woman or the band; a great shame, considering I felt an extreme resonance within myself during a lot of their melancholy fueled set. Her singing was barely more than a whisper, which made the microphone necessary, but also conveyed the emotional truth in the songs, and I’m still angry at myself for at least not picking up a flyer to learn the singer/band’s name.

While The Doonan Family Band prepared for their main set, Matt breezily stepped on stage, and surprised me completely with the content of the ‘punk poetry’ that he dished out. My imagination of him spouting loads of pretentious nonsense with little or no meaning to a crowd who would apploud confusingly was completely flipped 360! Matt had the audience laughing during his short set, which was a constant barrage of sarcastic, ironic humour, that he wielded to great effect, and I listened with a slightly agape mouth and, I’m sure, a smile showing underneath. I was reluctant to see him step down off stage, he was that comic!

Lastly, The Doonan Family Band all stepped up on stage, and from this point onward, my memory is slightly blurred, mainly due to the lemonade I was drinking. Suspiciously topped up by a clear liquid in a water bottle every so often. The rest was a mixture of upbeat, lively Irish folk tunes, two female family members dancing Irish jig to the music at an astonishing speed, and hilarious interaction between the band members, to the audience and themselves!

When the night had finally finished, I’d managed to give out my contact details to Matt (I’m aspiring to be a music journalist), get heavily drunk and have an absolutely awesome time! With the slightly dizzy memories of the alcohol and music, I went to sleep before my head hit the pillow!

After the night before, Howard Bros, the Bluegrass duo playing at Fernandes Brewery Tap seemed a little bit of a disappointment for me. Probably because of the mix of very repetitive songs, which didn’t cater much to my taste, as they were a little too off the Folk music topic, and the more traditional pub feel of the visitors. Howard Bros were playing at Fernandes for free, which meant lots of the usually mildly irritating pub stereotypes were playing up with the music, and infuriating me, frustrating me to the point where I was hoping for the set to end early. Eventually it did (end), and I was quite glad to be out of the environment, feeling a little let down, after building up the day after the previous night.

The Wakefield Folk Festival will be remembered as The Snooty Fox performances for me, mainly because of the audience’s respect and eagerness to listen, having paid to get in. This furthers my belief that gigs really can, and some do, depend on the audience as well as the acts up on a stage!

I’ll leave you with this; the music video to Skint & Demoralised’s highest charting single (#100 in the UK Charts, not too shabby), ‘Red Lipstick’.

The Raven

I’m currently sat eating lots of random, fruity sweets in my dining room. Correction, I’m now sat, two days later, nursing one of those hangovers where your stomach feels like it’s slowly dying on you… I’m hoping the numerous glasses of water will neutralize this, along with any potential headaches that might be developing…

I’m only intending this to be a short post as I’ve got lots to do for my brother’s birthday party later… Fun. And by lots to do, I mean sitting on my ass watching my mum run around trying to turn the house into Disney World in Yorkshire.

The Raven, by Edgar Allen Poe is my favourite poem I have decided! I love the gothic tone and haunting subtleties… Excellent lines, such as “Take thy beak from out my heart, and take thy form from off my door” just mesmerise me! I’d definitely encourage anyone who hasn’t read it to give it a go. I’m not usually the kind of person that would find poems that engaging either, I’m more of an all out literature guy myself, but this particular poem definitely won me over…

Below is just a Halloween special created by Natalia Kills and Space Cowboy of the poem, enjoy.

(Original Blogspot Date: Tuesday, 24th August 2010)

Pinch Punch, First Of The Month

So August is here (stupid American blog site says I wrote this on the 31st), and I haven’t anything since just before the middle of July… I haven’t really been doing anything to be honest, and that’s the main reason that I’ve not written anything. Unless you count copious amounts of Grey’s Anatomy, South Park and How I Met Your Mother to be something fascinating to read about second hand… Didn’t think so.

My main reason to post right now, at 5 in the morning, was to rant about how I had a test shift at Subway, and the fact that they never got back to me after this most epic of failures… I’d call it less of a test shift, and more of an opportunity for the manager to dump her shit onto someone who is too nervous about making a good impression to answer back or correct her on being so rude. MASSIVE BITCH. I’m sure that not many people would know absolutely every intricate detail of how to do a particular job after 2 minutes of walking in there. And yet, I was expected to be a pro employee after being shown the staff room…

Anyway, enough of that, because I don’t want it to get me down, and I’m sure it’s not going to be interesting to read when someone (eventually) follows my blog. And by that, I mean someone who isn’t a friend that’s signed up to Blogspot, ’cause that’s just common etiquette, right?

So I have my house to myself for a week, as my mum and bro have gone on holiday for a week to Spain (shame my passport wasn’t in date eh?), and so I need to entertain myself all this time. Most of it will hopefully consist of writing music reviews for an in development website that I’ve been offered to help out with, which is actually pretty fun! I’m hoping that it helps me in my post University endeavours as well…

Anyway, one thing that I’ve been thinking about is physical attraction, and what difference it can make for one person to another. Is it only this type of attraction that makes your heart jump into your throat? Can physical ever be a decent basis for the foundation of a relationship? I have a lot of questions, and my own answers for these questions…

Personally, I’ve never found myself with butterflies and blushing with anyone who I haven’t found to be very attractive, which can render me looking like an incapably shy school boy talking to their first crush. It’s something I’ve never been able to get over, no matter how much I wish I could… And yet, I also have a fondness of this feeling, as it means that I’m experiencing a really extreme human emotion. When this feeling hits, everyone else completely fades into the background, and there is that one person who you need and desire more than anyone else… It’s a real pain when this is one sided though, but this infatuation, a false sense of love, is usually based solely on a person’s appearance and is, in effect, quite shallow… Have you never considered the possibility that the person is actually very arrogant/cruel/dull/unreasonable/psychotic etc. I actually used this random word generator (http://watchout4snakes.com/creativitytools/RandomWord/RandomWordPlus.aspx), and I tell no lie, I was going to use the first word it came up with as a word to put in there with all the others, and “hung” came up. I think half the people who read this blog, mostly woman I’d presume, would not complain if the person was very hung. And moving on.

I guess to sum up, the obvious answer is that, whether you are attracted to someone physically or not, you should try and set that aside for a time, and get to know the person’s personality. It can be tough not to be starry eyed by a good looking outer shell, but if they’re rotten in the core, it can affect you in ways you’d never even believe…

I personally feel that you need to be attracted to a man/woman to be able to sustain a good relationship, as sex is a big part, and not in a shallow way; you need to want to be physical person. Also, I think that it’s excellent to have such a feeling, and if you act on it and you’re compatible, then great! Just beware you don’t ignore warning signs of a not very nice individual because of a pretty face.

I guess to round this blog post off I’ll post a song, or a song preview to be precise. This is a short snippet of ‘Mirrors’ by Natalia Kills, rumoured to feature Akon in the full version, but we’ll see… I’ve had this on my iPod on repeat for the past week or so; I love the dark, electronic beat and synths, and the lyrics are quite catchy too. I thought this would go hand in hand with my blog, considering mirrors are a quick connotation to reflection and appearance. Anyway, I’mma go dance in my room to Natalia Kills, later to anyone who reads this!

(Original Blogspot Date: Saturday, 31st July 2010)

The Long Road Home…

After staying up all night from the absolute agony in my aching arms, I took it upon myself to write another blog post, hoping that it might stimulate my brain enough to tire me out…

After a relatively dull week, being about the 5th in a row, I travelled down to London on Thursday for my friend Suheli Moshahid’s birthday at the 02 Arena. The night started pretty late; we didn’t leave for Inc Club until about half 9… A few Long Island Iced Teas later and we were in the club on the dancefloor, my holding Suheli’s cake and thrusting it around like nobody’s business. Inevitably though, the packaging tore open accidentally, so Morgan Chatten and I saw this as an opportunity. Within 20 minutes, there was about a tenth of the cake on the bar side, completely demolished. The night was a success, although the music was a bit more urban than I would’ve liked, and by the time we left, I was ready to go… A pity that we had to wait for the tube station to start up again. 2 hours later.

This was my last night out while down in the London area, and the rest of my time was spent packing, and dressing up in bin bags, which is obviously a natural exploit to cure boredom. While jamming my suitcase full of all the crap I’d collected over my 2nd year at Hertfordshire, I thought about the theme for my 21st; Tim Burton. Mentally planning my Mad Hatter costume provided me with something to pass the time, not only during my tedious last few days in my house, but will provide me with something to think about and create over Summer! A win/win situation!

Finally, my day spent travelling back to Leeds was an absolute nightmare, I had to drag my suitcase and 3 bags around London, from coach to coach… Not something that went down well with my body. At long last though, with pretty much all of my upper body muscles screaming in pain, I managed to make it back, and am now faced with the task of finding myself a job… I’ll write about that on my blog when and as it comes! Peace out.

(Original Blogspot Date: Tuesday, 13th July 2010)

G-A-Y Pride

Fresh from watching (500) Days Of Summer (for the 10,00th time) with Rosanna Lord, future housemate, I’ve decided to come to the sweltering heat of the library to write about my weekend in London…

I’ll start out by saying that a Friday night in with your mum coming to visit, getting drunk to the point where you’re singing all the old ‘classics like Cher’s ‘Walking In Memphis’ and Shania Twain’s unbeatably understated ‘I’m Gonna Getcha Good!’, is probably the absolute best way to start a weekend.

After nursing a hangover and walking around Euston with 3 overly excited kids and my mum, Steph Clarke and I decided it was high time for us to get our drink on, and set off for G-A-Y Bar to obtain wristbands for cheap entry that night. As we knew full well, it was the London Pride weekend, although we weren’t prepared at all for the absolutely massive crowd that were between us and the bar entrance… We had to dodge, squeeze and shove our way through the hoards of people before we could even get to the bar to be served, by which time it’d been about 40 minutes since we’d started weaving our way through the people. Finally we got our drinks and wristbands, one spare for Steph’s flatmate, and casually looked around the room at all the diverse people, some of them a little garish, others less so… One person caught my eye, walking about the place looking a little lost and texting on his phone… I really should learn how to start chatting to people, he really was a good looking dude!

Arriving back at the flat, we got showered and ready, then proceeded to dance around like idiots while drinking, and then heading off for the club on the tube, camera in hand, taking silly photos left, right and centre.

I just want to live a normal life?!

The queue outside Heaven was really something, stretching most of the way up the street towards Charing Cross Station, and that was just one side of it… What followed was an interesting queue experience meeting several people, the ones that stuck out being ‘Miss Pinkpussy-Princess’, a drag queen, otherwise known as James, and a friendly girl called Chanelle who bought us all drinks when we got in!

G-A-Y was pretty much what I expected, a mix of the more obvious looking gay people, the finger pointing Kylie/Madonna/Britney/any female artist fanatics, and the more attractive kind of people who weren’t as showy about their sexuality, in my opinion anyway. The music was surprisingly good, although a little on the camp side, which was standard really. It managed to get us all dancing and havign a great time for hours which is what mattered! Eventually though, as is always the case with partying hard, it began to wear us down and we left at the modest time of 4am. Finally, we arrived home, not without having a massive argument about the double standards of different religions and cultures, and fell asleep after laughing about the night we’d had.

The next day was mostly spent recovering from the night, watching tacky, Sunday morning TV and sitting in the park in a park of Angel. One topic that we discussed at length is one that I’ve wondered myself quite a lot.

Why is it that gay men are overly camp, adopt feminine demeanors and dress up in women’s clothing? I know that obviously not ALL gay men are like this, but quite a shocking majority are. Is it a (sub?) conscious effort to make their preference known to people on a day-to-day basis, in the hopes of attracting more men, or is it just the way some people are? My opinion is that it is split, with the majority playing up to it, at least a little bit… I always thought that there were just certain key fashion aspects that were put in place to purposefully reveal sexual preference, i.e. the 80′s moustache, skinny jeans and, most recently, the mushroom cut… I’d really like to know what this is all about, as I personally don’t find any of these style choices attractive myself… But I suppose there’s all sorts of different reasons as to why some men are just camp, or like to portray themselves in such a manner, I’m just left at a loss as to why.

Anyway, that was all I wanted to say with this blog entry; I just felt the need to pose something out there… Now it’s off to bed, but before I go, I’ll post up a French electronic artist named SebastiAn (the capital ‘A’ is intentional), who I’ve recently rediscovered my love for, especially from my last year of 6th Form, 2007-2008.

(Original Blogspot Date: Monday, 5th July 2010)

Pensive Thought

So my family are coming down this weekend, which should be immensely fun, considering my University house is akin to a dilapidated wreck from an apocalyptic vision of the future… Throw in the fact that there’s flies and moths congregating in all corners of the house (most disgustingly on one particular window of the kitchen), and you’ve pretty much got yourself an instant starter pack for a typical plague.

On Saturday, it appears a trip to London will be in order, nice day with my mum and brother, as well as my friend Steph Clarke who’ll be joining me for a typical weekend showing our faces at the G-A-Y joint. I.e. It’s the 2nd time we’ll have been, and I was too shit-wrecked to remember the first time. Secretly hoping that my mum will give me a little bit of, and then some more, money for my drinking habit, being the absolute star that she is.

Apparently it’s the London Gay Pride this weekend, so I think Steph and I will definitely detach ourselves from the more family orientated crowd, with the desire of making new friends, and possibly getting ourselves some alcohol down us, which could do no harm. Secretly I’m hoping that Steph finds the lesbian love she’s always longed for. Bless her, I think she really needs it.

All of these fantastical sounding plans cover up the fact that, during the weekdays, I tend to be very bored and lonely! There’s not much to do in this dull town, and not many people are around, seeing as University has finished for the Summer… With the exception of the nurses and some retake students. This has, however, left me with quite a lot of time to reevaluate some of the aspects that are currently bothering me in my life…

Firstly, there’s the situation of how you know whether someone is actually in trouble and needs your help, or whether they’re just playing the victim so that they can manipulate people with a false pretence of innocence. Coupled with a doe-eyed stare, this can look very convincing… After thinking about some of the things this one person has done in particular; back and forth stirring, taking drugs up to their eyes at a festival, in an attempt to have one of those “Oh my god remember that time I…” stories, I have decided to discard a very one sided ‘friendship’, as I’m very sick of putting up with weekly cries for attention. Bitch.

The other thing that I’ve spent my time thinking about is something that I often contemplate (just used thesaurus.com to find a different word to muse, I’m nowhere near pretentious), which is the idea of being in a relationship.

Up until around the Christmas most recently gone, most of my thoughts went into how and when my next relationship would come about, who the person would be, whether the person I was currently interested in liked me back, whether I would have a happily ever after etc… Suffice to say I was placing a lot of emphasis on this, and I’m not entirely sure why to be honest… Since the start of 2010 however, I feel like this has really changed, and I’m not looking for this anymore, I’m not going to chase around someone who’s not going to show any appreciation or effort back, is there really any point? It’s a wonder that I even wanted anyone so desperately in the first place, especially since my first relationship had ended so disastrously. It was an epic rejection which left me with low confidence and a feeling of unworthiness for well up to a year, and can sometimes resurface when I’m staying at home for too long, although I’m not entirely sure whether it’s the rejection, the horribly typical ‘loser from school’ background, or the lack of many, if any, decent friends from home who can think about other people besides themselves for a good 2 minutes or so, which leads me to the last thing I’ve been thinking about. Home friends.

I’ll not mention any names, purely based on the fact that I don’t know who’s ever going to read this, and it’s better to be safe than sorry. What is it about maturing that allows you to look back on your friendships with some people and think “Why the fuck did I let them treat me like that?” Much like looking back on a past relationship, sometimes you think that perhaps you should’ve done things differently to earn the respect of others… I certainly think things would’ve turned out better concerning the people who used to matter to me had I been a little less impulsive and immature in my school years… But then I suppose whatever happened, happened. Still though, I think one thing I need to note to myself is taking a more straightforward approach to people, without letting things build up inside to the point where I explode, causing verbal shrapnel to fly about and cut deep… I suppose we’ll see the shape of things to come.

P.S. If a die-hard Lost fan picks up on the subtle references, you rock.

P.P.S. I just thought I’d post this, which I’ve been listening to a little today…

(Original Blogspot Date: Thursday, 1st July 2010)

Entering The Modelling Industry

Friday was a very interesting day… Went to London to meet up with a couple of friends, and take part in a volunteer fashion runway for London College Of Fashion. It was a very interesting, yet terrifying experience, I have to say… Most of the day was spent in a room watching people trying on different outfits, spending time just chatting with my friends, and a few other people who were pretty friendly!

The designers I had to work with weren’t exactly the kind of people I was hoping would be there. One was a very unorganised guy who seemed to be very particular in making sure I walk down the runway covering the flaws in his creations… And the other was the textbook example of an egocentric designer, constantly worrying about the blue tinted sunglasses he wanted me to wear, as though I could possibly loose them every ten minutes… I think the epitome of his arrogance came when he walked down the runway last, set off a flare in each hand along the way, and then held his arms out like the reincarnation of Jesus in the very centre of the stage. The word prick doesn’t even begin to explain it! Especially considering the clothes he’d made me wear (don’t really remember what the other models were wearing) seemed quite cheap and tacky.

In other news, I have to say that my two friends who modelled as well looked absolutely amazing in the clothes that their friendlier, more talented designers had created… One such example is the GaGa-esque outfit that my good friend Morgan wore for one of her many designers… In demand much.

There’s a nice picture of the outfit Morgan wore, very Lady GaGa right? The other stuff she had on was very impressive too, and Su too. Very jealous they got decent designers.

A very long day, and it took a lot of energy, even if it was just sitting around (and drinking down a dark alley to calm the nerves of the dress rehearsal) waiting to be fitted! A fun day, something I would definitely do again, but thoroughly exhausting, by the end of the day I was absolutely knackered, think I was in bed for about half ten… And that’s it. So yeah, I’m now a model, and I can smize and walk for sure…

(Original Blogspot Date: Sunday, 27th June 2010)

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.