GregHorrorShow Music Awards 2009

It’s been a busy year for music, what with the 80’s revival marching on and the re-ermergence of pop here in the UK (though I’m sure some would say it’s never been away 🙂 )

Without further ado, here are the awards for 2009:

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BEST NEWCOMER

WINNER: La Roux

This was a pretty closely fought one actually, as Florence & The Machine also made a big splash in 2009. But in the end Elly Jackson and co. take the gong.

RUNNERS UP:

Florence & The Machine

Amazing Baby

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BEST VIDEO

WINNER: ‘Warriors Dance’ – The Prodigy

This Corin Hardy directed gem tell the story of three cigarette packets who start a rave in a shop with other packets – cause a fire and then escape leaving the rest of packets to dance in the flames. Brilliant.

RUNNERS UP:

‘Fire’ – Kasabian

‘Bulletproof’ – La Roux

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BEST LIVE PERFORMANCE

WINNER: La Roux (Koko – May 2009)

This was another tight one because Florence and Madeleine Peyroux were such fantastic performers but I had to give it to La Roux for the atmosphere as well as the performance. See my original write up HERE.

RUNNERS UP:

Florence & The Machine (Bloomsbury Ballroom – May 2009)

Madeliene Peyroux (Barbican – April 2009)

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BEST COMPILATION ALBUM

WINNER: ‘Motown 50’ (Motown)

Motown. What a label. It’s not until you sit down and listen to these stunning tracks that you realise just how good these bands were: Diana Ross and The Supremes, The Four Tops, The Temptations, The Commodores and many many more. Most definitely worth checking out.

RUNNERS UP:

‘The Boat That Rocked’ OST (Mercury)

‘Common People – Brit Pop: The Story’ (Universal)

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BEST REMIX

WINNER: ‘In For The Kill’ (Let’s Get Skreamy Remix) – La Roux

Another award for La Roux although the credit here goes solely to Skreamy, who creates a dark electro tinged version of the band’s Top 10 hit ‘In For The Kill’. The entire thing leads to a breakbeat in the last minute which is superb.

RUNNERS UP:

‘Rabbit Heart’ (Jamie T Remix) – Florence & The Machine

‘Starry Eyed’ (Jakwob Remix) – Ellie Goulding

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GREGHORRORSHOW’S ONE TO WATCH FOR 2010

WINNER: Jonathan Jeremiah

Another tough one to choose as the runners up are so good as well. But Jonathan Jeremiah takes it for having a voice the like of which I haven’t heard in a long time. It reminds me of people like Neil Diamond and Jonathan Edwards. Check out his myspace for more.

RUNNERS UP:

Pete Lawrie

Ellie Goulding

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BEST SINGLE

WINNER: ‘Bulletproof’ – La Roux

‘Bulletproof’ is one of those great songs that you just can’t get out of your head. Whether it’s the verse or the chorus, I found it stuck in my cranium more times than I care to remember and the fact that I didn’t mind says a lot about it.

RUNNERS UP:

‘Warriors Dance’ – The Prodigy

‘Daniel’ – Bat For Lashes

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BEST ALBUM

WINNER: ‘La Roux’ – La Roux

Chock full of great tunes and that includes the stuff that hasn’t been released as singles, La Roux’s debut album was one that didn’t leave my car stereo for the majority of the summer. Whether or not La Roux end up being one hit wonders (which I hope doesn’t happen) this is an album that is a fantastic listen.

RUNNERS UP:

‘Invaders Must Die’ – The Prodigy

‘Two Suns’ – Bat For Lashes

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BEST ARTIST

WINNER: La Roux

Couldn’t really be anyone else after taking best single and best album… so La Roux make it a clean sweep, taking the award for best artist of 2009. It takes a lot to win me over so much but a great album, strong singles and a brilliant gig certainly did the trick!

RUNNERS UP:

Florence & The Machine

The Prodigy

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So there we go, music is done and dusted – only the big hitters left: TV, Film and Games!

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Music – “Takin’ You Back To The Old Skool”

Discman

It’s amazing how music can bridge the gap between the past and now.

Doesn’t matter whether it’s months or years there is a song that ‘takes you back.’

I read a great book called “Your Brain On Music” by Dan Levitin – it explains how music recognition works within the brain and reveals the amazing fact that an imprint of every song you’ve ever heard is in your brain – just waiting to be reactivated.

It is a wonderfully interesting book if you love music and is definitely worth checking out.

But I digress…

I love that feeling, almost like a rush of adrenalin, when you hear a track you haven’t heard for ages and you’re suddenly catapulted back to the past.

For some tracks it’s a specific memory, I recently heard ‘Stop’ by The Spice Girls on TV and I remembered my mate’s Dad driving us home, with that on the radio (it was No.1 at the time I believe), the morning after all night session at another friend’s house.

BranVan3000

Others are more generic memories – Bran Van 3000 ‘Drinking In LA’ popped up on random on my ipod a few weeks ago and I was back to the summer it was released. No specific memory, just a feeling of it being sunny and warm.

I remember having ‘Turtle Power’ by Partners In Kryme taped on VHS with loads of other stuff we recorded off the Chart Show on TV. Me and my brother played the video all the time and dancing/messing around. Happy days. I heard it for the first time in years last week and I was transported back.

I also find it amazing that small children can pick up on things so quickly and almost all of them love music. My 2 year old daughter now has her own playlist on Vidzone of stuff she likes. She loves dancing around to it: Abba ‘Mamma Mia’, La Roux ‘In For The Kill’, Prodigy ‘Warrior Dance’ – she sings along with everything.

One of the best musical inventions of recent times is the ipod and the advent of digital music.

I remember having tapes in my walkman on the bus to school and as we got more advanced Cd’s in my discman – but it seems so limited. Especially carrying round 10 cds! It sounds insane.

I have a playlist of stuff I’ve rated 4 or 5 stars – it has almost 3,000 tracks in it. There is nothing better than sticking than playlist on random and seeing what comes up.

Plenty of great old tracks to fire up the synapses and get the memories flowing!

La Roux Tear Up Koko

laroux

Being a jaded music industry cynic 😀 it’s not often I find myself caught up in the moment – especially at a gig by a new band.

But last night’s brilliant performance by La Roux at Koko gave me goosebumps. Literally.

Now I won’t pretend it was just the band, as awesome as Elly Jackson and her crew were, it was also the crowd reaction.

We’ve all been there – a gig by our favourite artist, they strike up the first notes of a hit record and the place goes wild. Cue goosebumps.

But working in the industry allows me to get the jump on this sometimes and I find myself in that situation with, in the case of La Roux, a band that I’m seeing live for the first time.

When they started ‘In For The Kill’ I thought the roof was gonna come off of Koko. It brings home the effect of music – how a great tune can lift your mood and make the day seem ok.

It’s nice to feel that from a new band. Obviously I’ve been listening to the tracks we’ve had in the office for months so am familiar with them but this isn’t about that as much as it is about feeling that moment – the connection between artist and audience.

As for La Roux, I’ll be interested to see what the full album is like – her voice is astounding and even the tracks I didn’t know sounded good, which bodes well.

La Roux’s debut album is out at the end of June and the latest single ‘Bulletproof’ is out now, so check them out and see what you think.

GregHorrorShow Playlist – April 2009

Well I thought it was about time I put togther some sort of playlist for you guys.

In the end I decided the best way to approach it, rather than a ‘hot new bands’ type of thing would be to put togther the stuff I’ve been listening to the last few weeks and see what you think. 😎

So this includes old and new tracks, songs you’ve probably heard and some you may not have.

I put them into one long mix to try and escape the spectre of piracy – obviously the tracks in here are for you to check out, if you like them get the album off iTunes or get yourself down to a gig.

One last thing to note is I am showcasing great music (in my opinion) in this playlist I cannot ‘mix’ and I’m not a DJ. I’ve just segued the tracks to stop people ripping them off. 😀

Enjoy!

GregHorrorShow April 09 Playlist:

1.  In For The Kill (Skream’s Let Get Ravey Mix) – LA ROUX
2.  You’ve Got The Love – FLORENCE AND THE MACHINE
3.  Sentimental Heart – SHE & HIM
4.  They Say – SCARS ON BROADWAY
5.  Dull Life – YEAH YEAH YEAHS
6.  You Don’t Have To Say You Love Me – DUSTY SPRINGFIELD
7.  Tiger Moutain Peasant Song – FLEET FOXES
8.  One Day Like This – ELBOW
9.  Gasoline – THE AIRBORNE TOXIC EVENT
10. No Pause – GIRL TALK
11. Paris Is Burning – LADYHAWKE
12. That’s The Reason – THE RAKES
13. My Turn – HOOBASTANK
14. Revival – SOULSAVERS

Here is the link to download, the mix is under 55mb and clocks in around 48 minutes:

GREGHORRORSHOW PLAYLIST – APRIL 2009

N..B. You may discover this page long after the link has expired, if you still want a copy of the mix drop me an e-mail at: greg_horror_show@yahoo.co.uk  and I’ll see if I can send it over.

Bands worth checking out…

In no particular order, a few artists that are well worth checking out if you haven’t heard them…

 

Laura Marlinghttp://www.myspace.com/lauramarling

“Alas, I Cannot Swim”
Tracks: Cross Your Fingers, Ghosts

It’s hard to believe that Laura Marling is just 19 years old when you hear some of the beautiful vocals and haunting themes of her album ‘Alas, I Cannot Swim’.

I suspect her next album will determine where she goes from here – crossover into the mainstream consciousness? Or remain under the radar putting out critically acclaimed but little known albums?

Only time will tell – I always think great music should be heard by as many people as possible but it’s amazing to listen to such fanstastic music knowing not many people have experienced it.

Hopefully this will help spread the word on Laura Marling a little further than it exists at the moment.

 

Friendly Fireshttp://www.myspace.com/friendlyfires

‘Friendly Fires’
Tracks: In The Hospital, Paris, Strobe

Coming on like a slightly more chilled version of the Klaxons, Friendly Fires sort of came from leftfield for me in that I somehow missed the intial buzz and ended up having the album without actually hearing any of it.

It’s a great little album though, very cool and ‘In The Hospital’ has a brilliant little sing-along refrain that will be stuck in your head for ages!

 

Ladyhawkehttp://www.myspace.com/ladyhawkerock

‘Ladyhawke’
Tracks: Paris Is Burning, My Delirium, Dusk Til Dawn, Professional Suicide

This was a huge album for me last year – Ladyhawke’s brand of 80’s influenced synth-pop-rock saw her gain critical acclaim and make her way onto several of my itunes playlists 😀

First single ‘Paris Is Burning’ is a real foot stomper and ‘My Delirium’ is a great tune. Ladyhawke is superb live, overcoming her struggles with Asperger’s Syndrome to put on some impressive, if subdued, performances.

 

She And Himhttp://www.myspace.com/sheandhim

‘Volume One’
Tracks: Sentimental Heart, Why Do You Let Me Stay Here?, Sweet Darlin’

NB. This video contains Itchy and Scratchy style cartoon violence so avoid if (very) easily offended.

My favourite album in absolutely ages 😎 – and with the amount of music I listen to (at work and in my spare time) that is saying something. Even more surprising is the fact that one half of this duo is actress Zooey Deschanel (Elf, The Happening). Usually anything an actress releases is given a wide birth but this is top quality old school pop – lovely harmonies.

And how cool is that video above? 😀

 

La Rouxhttp://www.myspace.com/larouxuk

Album TBC
Tracks: In For The Kill, Quicksand

Saw these live last week and I thought I’d driven a DeLorean into the venue 😆 – great 80’s style synth pop. With a great look to match. They have been on too many ‘one’s to watch for 2009’ lists but hopefully that’ll be a help rather than a hinderance – looking forward to seeing what the general public at large make of it!

Nice remix of ‘In For The Kill’ available here: http://airbornetoxicevents.wordpress.com/2009/02/18/and-now-let-go-of-my-hand/

 

Blood Red Shoeshttp://www.myspace.com/bloodredshoes

‘Box Of Secrets’
Tracks: You Bring Me Down, I Wish I Was Someone Better, ADHD

Sometimes I’m handed an album that just rocks. This is one of those albums – fast paced indie pop rock that you can’t help tapping your feet to. I saw them live last year and they blew the crowd out of the water. Looking forward to hearing some new matrial soon from this boy/girl duo.

If you like your guitars fast and loud – this is a band for you.