Most of the office have been hip-hopping away and having a gay ole time at Glastonbury, I however having been holding the fort and keeping abreast of all the latest news. It won’t be new to hear of MJ’s passing and everyone has marked it in their own special way….I like this cover of “Black or White” by the supremo-talented Clark of The Gay Blades…..
BEN (Solo recording at 13)
The 25th of June 2009 will be remembered as a sad day for music. Today the King of Pop has passed away victim of a heart attack, a few weeks before his much talked-about big live comeback in London was planned. As the world mourns the loss of one of its most iconic popular figures, Shazam wants to join the millions of tributes currently occurring around the globe by digging in the youtube archives and putting together a video compilation with some of Michael Jackson’s most important artistic moments through an unparalleled career extended over five decades, from the beginnings in his childhood next to his brothers The Jacksons 5 to more recent shows and public appearances. Our glimpse at Michael’s career after the jump Read more…
After Neil Young’s hugely successful headline slot last year, The Hop Farm Festival returns in 2009 with a massive lineup that includes Paul Weller, The Fratellis, Doves & Ash to name but a few. We spoke to Bev Burton, Hop Farms Line Up Organiser, and asked why people should choose Hop Farm over one of the many other festivals on offer this Summer:
“We’ve got no branding, sponsorships, VIP areas. It’s very much a case that the two most important things that happen at Hop Farm are making sure the fans have a good time and the bands have a good time. If your bands are happy and your punters are happy, then you’ve got a good festival. It’s all about those two things which, after all are, the most important things at a festival”.
The lack of VIP zone is surely a blessing for all festival goers. No one likes to see members of the Geldof family or the cast of Hollyoaks waltzing through to the VIP section, at Hop Farm people come for the music – not to be seen. While everyone will surely enjoy the sight of The Modfather running through his extensive back catalogue, there are plenty of new bands to discover over the weekend. As Bev is happy to confirm:
“We’ve got some really great up and coming bands like Chapman Family, Fight Like Apes, Twilight Sad, White Denim, who are just one of the best live bands around. The Good The Bad are a really great new band who are just starting to come through”.
Importantly Hop Farm doesn’t just cater for those with a penchant for guitars. The festival now boasts a dance arena that see’s headline slots from 2manydjs and Etienne De Crecy. The latter’s set promises to be one of the highlights, the French electro master will be performing his live set from within a three dimensional, neon lit, cube. This, Bev informs, caused some restructuring of the dance tent to accommodate!
While some smaller festivals have fallen foul of the recent economic crumble, Hop Farm seems to be bucking the trend. The involvement of the founder of Mean Fiddler, Vince Power, may have a slight influence of this – as Bev will quickly admit. “I think it’s been one of our major strengths, having Vince at the helm. If anyone can pull off a successful festival, it’s him!”.
For the full line up, travel information and tickets please head to the official Hop Farm site here
If the answer to the above question is yes and you’re using iPhone OS 3.0, then you can now download Version 1.7 of our application. This updated version of the app comes with the following new new features:
- View your Tags on a map: see your musical journey unfold by location.
- Share the moment: send a postcard and let friends buy the tracks you discover.
- Tweet your Tags: post artist and track details to Twitter.
- Enhanced external microphone support for iPod Touch 1st & 2nd Generation: MacAlly iVoice III mic now supported.
- Improved usability on scrolling and on re-sending untagged Tags.
- Clearer highlights for selected items and overall improved speed and efficiency.
To download the applicaiton please visit the App Store and search for Shazam. On a related note, if you are a Twitter user make sure you follow our tweets at #shazamid.
As is the custom around this time of year, the UK’s music scene’s focus shifts to a farm in Pilton, Somerset. Glastonbury needs no introduction, from a small folk festival that hosted Tyrannosaurus Rex (soon to become T-Rex) Michael Eavis has developed what has become the festival that all other festivals measure themselves against. Whether its Radiohead’s rain soaked headline slot in 1997 or Jay-Z’s “controversial” inclusion last year, everyone has a stand out Glastonbury moment; ensuring the festival has permanently become etched in all music lovers yearly calendar. While no guarantee can be made on the weather, anyone who has been will tell you that rain soaked wellies are a small price to pay for an unforgettable weekend of live music.
After criticisms over the line up last year, Eavis has delivered some huge headline acts. Revered country rocker Neil Young headlines the Friday and the newly reunited Blur will close the festival. The one act that has dominated preview coverage of this year’s festival has to be Saturday night’s headliner, The Boss himself, Bruce Springsteen. Springsteen’s set will be the first headline festival set he has performed in the UK. Having never heard of the festival before, Evis coaxed the ‘Born in The USA’ singer into playing by sending his agent a document filled with glowing quotes from musicians who had previously played.
While the sets from the Glastonbury headliners will always be memorable, part of its continued success is that it continues to offer such a varied line up of established and up and coming acts. These are a few of the, slightly less hyped, acts that promise to deliver some festivals highlights:
The Big Pink
When Robbie Furse and Milo Cordell formed The Big pink, much was written about the musical past of the two. Furse was previously Alec Empire’s guitar protégé while Cordell’s label, Merok, was the breeding ground for various bands such as Klaxons, Crystal Castles and Pre (singer, Akiko, also plays drums in The Big Pink). With a string of jaw dropping singles and after recently signing to 4AD, the band has clearly proved that there is more to them than an impressive rolodex. The band recalls the feedback and subtle beauty of My Bloody Valentine and The Jesus & Mary Chain. Be sure to catch their intense performance as they play the Queens Head and John Peel stages.
Hypnotic Brass Ensemble
Hypnotic Brass Ensemble takes every preconception you’ve ever had about jazz groups and throws them out the window. The eight brass players are all sons of the lauded Chicago trumpeter Phil Conran (the line up is bolstered with drummer Chris Anderson). The band first came to our attention after a mind blowing performance on Jools Holland, however word has been slowly spreading about this band; helped by Damon Albarn who released their first UK album on his label. The bands traditional instruments are merged with their modern hip-hop style. Their set in Club Dada on Saturday would be a good place to head if you’re looking for something off the beaten track.
Marina And The Diamonds
While much has been said about the rise of synth pop obsessed ladies such as Little Boots and La Roux, 2009 has also seen the rise of plenty of other female singer songwriters who don’t have an obsession with the Human League. Marina has more in common with Regina Spektor and looks likely to be our next eccentric female star. After gaining hype through several blogs and gaining the support of tastemakers such as Huw Stephens, 2009 looks like a promising year for Marina. If you’re looking to impress your friends by seeing the next big thing then head to the Queens Head Stage on Saturday.
While The Strokes lock themselves away recording their new album, a new gang of guys with guitars have appeared from New York. Mixing three minute punk songs with Hall & Oates basslines may sound like a car crash on paper, but somehow The Virgins manage to pull it off. Known for their raucous live shows, The Virgins will be aiming to bring a bit of New York sleaze to the John Peel Stage on Friday.
Another of Glastonbury’s charms is you have the opportunity to get lost in a world of dance tents. One we’re particularly looking forward to is the ever impressive New York Downlow; featuring performances from the always fabulous Horse Meat Disco DJ’s. Check the video above for a glimpse of what they have in store!
This week Pitbull tops the Shazam Pre-relesae Tag Chart with his huge reggaton/electro hybrid, ‘I Know You Want Me (Calle Ocho)’. The record takes its main hook from 90’s house classic ‘The Bomb’ by The Bucketheads – a record which in turn samples ‘Street Player,’ an obscure track from American AOR rockers Chicago. Already massive in the USA and across Europe, ‘I Know You Want Me’ is sure to be a summer anthem in the UK. New releases come this week from Jamie T, Cascada and red haired chanteuse, La Roux
|1||Pitbull||I Know You Want Me||Positiva|
|4||Lazee Feat. Neverstore||Hold On||Hard2Beat|
|5||Melanie Fiona||Give It To Me Right||Universal Motown|
|7||Jamie T||Sticks ‘N’ Stones||Virgin|
|8||Cascada||Evacuate The Dancefloor||AATW|
|9||Yeah You’s||15 Minutes||Island|
|10||Florence & The Machine||Rabbit Heart||Island|
After churning out a feature length film, a pair of robot action figures, an 80’s dancefloor inspired coffee table and sets of $65000 replica robo helmets; Daft Arts, the production company owned by Daft Punk, have made their first forays into music video direction. The video for ‘Flushed and Flamelike, Themselves’ by LA based singer songwriter Douglas Armour’s features what appears to be a marooned Pearl Jam fan rushing around a forest in Baywatch style slow motion. It’s very well shot and the song is actually pretty nice.
It’s all perfectly pleasant, but wouldn’t it be better if Daft Punk got back to doing this…
Grizzly Bear – Two Weeks (Warp)
The influential electronic label Warp Records has got a lot to celebrate these days. Right on time for the label’s 20th anniversary, Warp can also add to its history the achievement of breaking into the top 10 of the US album charts for the first time. Oddly enough, the honour belongs to one of its few non-electronic artists, Brooklyn alternative pop-folksters Grizzly Bear. Specializing in multilayered vocal harmonies and delicate mostly acoustic instrumentation, Grizzly Bear are a direct contrast to much of Warp’s roster that includes twisted electronic pioneers such as Aphex Twin and LFO. ‘Veckatimest’, the band’s third album, was received with widespread acclaim hailing Grizzly Bear as one of America’s indie musical forces. The album’s first official single, ‘Two Weeks’, is the closest to a summer hit they have ever created thanks to its laidback pace, pleasant falsetto chorus and ‘Who-haa’ vocals. Added to this, the band’s penchant for remixes reaches a new high with French master Fred Falke wrapping ‘Two weeks’ in breezy keyboard riffs and a mid-tempo rhythm that somehow evokes Norway’s Eighties icons, A-ha!
Grizzly Bear – Two Weeks (Fred Falke Remix)
The Australian Indie-Electro duo have rocketed to the top of our iD Chart with their latest single ‘We Are The People’. The track has clearly struck a chord with you guys, so imagine our delight when we discovered a DIY cutout version of lead singer Luke Steele in this weeks NME! He’s currently residing on our Music Desk:
With Sweden as its engine, the whole of Scandinavia has established itself as a growing force in popular music with flourishing pop, indie and dance scenes adding up to their traditionally buoyant metal crowd. From the Balearic sound revival of Studio, Air France or The Tough Alliance, to The Knife’s leftfield electronica; the Nordic countries’ growing impact on Today’s international music has reached a new high, unseen since the days of ABBA.
Shazam embarks on a refreshing mini-tour through recent and imminent releases coming from those chilling territories. Read more…