2013 News Items
2013 News Items
19.12.13 Horrible Head, etc Take 50% of Horrible Head, add one third of Bisonics, plus 66.6% of Reticents, and multiply by a 100% of the legendary 5th member of Bisonics (controversially, there was never a 4th member) and what you get is Yellowjack.
Dave Pope, Andy Thomson & Paul Hamilton (for they be them) have joined forces with Malcolm Gayner in yet another mission to save Pop. Their secret weapon will be unleashed in the New Yeah-whatever. Who dreams, who dares? Who screams, “Who cares?”
11.12.13 Doug Murphy & Paul Hamilton Season’s freezings! It’s that time of year when we think of the poor and unfortunate, and one of the poorest and unfortunate Xmas number 1s in UK Singles Chart history was the 1979 winner, ‘Another Brick In The Wall’ by That Pink Floyd, a charmless antidote to paper hat hilarity and general knees-up fancy-another-old-fruit jollifications. Doug Murphy, applying the maxim “Take a song you hate and punk it up”, has re-recorded the hod carrier’s lament in a “Kick Out The Jams, Atom Heart Motherfuckers” stylee. It lurks here.
On the subject of That Pink Floyd, Paul Hamilton noticed something about two of their celebrated album sleeves: If one turns their 1977 LP sleeve ‘Animals’ upside-down it’s almost a mirror image of their ‘Atom Heart Mother’ cover from seven years before. Thinking about it further, the titles too can be interchanged, since ‘Animals’ features most prominently Battersea power station whilst ‘Atom Heart Mother’ took its title from a newspaper story about a pregnant woman being fitted with a heart pacemaker (in short, a power generator). Woooo! That’s something to discuss over your lager & flashback at The Piper At The Gates Of Dawn.
3.8.13. Doug Murphy & Paul Hamilton have acceded to public demand for a sunny, delightful summery pop song to cheer them up through these drab, dismal, grey days and have unleashed their 1bpm dance sensation ‘Two Camels‘ upon a bone-shivering, denture-chattering, blue-lipped populace.
1.8.13 Doug Murphy & Paul Hamilton‘s song ‘Fishes’ is under discussion alongside German youth-crazed dance combo Claire’s new single ‘Games’ in the debut edition of online magazine ‘Razzmatazz‘. Scroll down past The Morrissey, The Elvis Costello & The Roots, and The Dig For Victory (who ARE all these people?) and you’ll find us bobbing along, bobbing along on the bottom of the beautiful briny blog.
23.7.13 Bisonics Hot on the heels of their ‘Seconds’ album from two years ago, here is a video for their song ‘Shark‘. What? It doesn’t make sense? Why should it?
18.7.13-15.8.13 Jazz Cattle. J-Catz Petrie and Hamilton have independently contributed artworks to a group celebration of Elvis Presley’s 60th anniversary of his debut recording. The show is called ‘I Love You Because‘ and other notable contributors include Karen Morden (star of Jazz Cattle’s ‘Let Me Paint A Picture For You’ vid) and Harry Pye (who helped make Bisonics’ ‘Soft Afternoons’ film).
1.7.13 Doug Murphy & Paul Hamilton Clap your heads together to their video of ‘Keeps’, peekable on vimeo and youtube. This quirky perky hip-twitcher is, as you’re all too aware, from their ‘BIG BUN’ album. What? You bain’t got it yet? Then hop to it!
25.6.13 Bisonics A video for the closing song on their ‘Seconds’ album is now on vimeo.com for your displeasure.
29.4.13 Doug Murphy & Paul Hamilton have let their new creation, ‘BIG BUN’, out of its hutch. Its 10 paw-thumping tunes can be heard on bandcamp where you can obtain the songs in FLAC (a superior audio format to weedy mp3) and you get a saucy little pdf booklet with words and pictures.
10.1.13 Horrible Head‘s Strum-Und-Jangler Dave Pope read the news today, oh boy, about his guitar hero Wilko Johnson being diagnosed with terminal pancreatic cancer and deciding against chemotherapy. Here is Dave’s personal tribute…
“When I was 17 and living in Pitsea, Essex in 1980, I had guitar lessons on Canvey Island. I had been a Dr Feelgood fan since 1975 when ‘Down By The Jetty’ was released. To a young teenager growing up in East London, it seemed a natural progression to go from Status Quo’s ‘Ma Kelly’s Greasy Spoon’ , ‘Dog Of Two Head’ and ‘Piledriver’ albums to songs such as ‘Roxette’ and ‘All Through The City’.
My family moved to Essex when I was 16 and on the road to somewhere. I had my first shag, smoked my first spliff and realised there was a world out there. As an ‘A’-level student at Basildon College, I had very little money, but I always made sure I had enough for my guitar lesson with my tutor, Les Titford, who lived just off Canvey’s sea-front. Sometimes I had the fare for the 8-mile bus journey. More often I had enough to get me part of the way, and the driver would ‘very kindly’ drop me off at the spot where the money had been used up. With almost-unplayable Hondo II electric guitar in hand, I would walk to Les’s gaff, spend an hour entangling my fingers trying to learn Hotel bleedin’ California, and then an 8-mile walk back from Canvey to Pitsea. Then another 4-mile walk from Pitsea to Basildon College, where I would pose in the canteen with my guitar gently stroked by my long Francis Rossi hair, hoping to get noticed by anyone, and wait for an hour or so before bunking off my Maths class.
Why am I telling you this? 1. Because stories are to people what water is to fish; 2. Because rock’n’roll music is about more than gimmicks or style or stars; and 3. Because it’s got a lot to do with Wilko Johnson. He and the Feelgoods connected with me because they were from my neighbourhood. Because they were an extraordinary band from an ordinary town, it made us all aware that we had the potential to be extraordinary, too.
The merest mention of Canvey Island immediately reminds me of the Feelgoods. As a kid we would have our family holidays there at my Nan & Grandad’s caravan – in the park just next to the oil refinery. Many a time my Grandad and I would lose golf balls by firing them over the oil refinery fence – probably why I never took up the stupid game as an adult. But when Dr Feelgood’s first album was released, Canvey took on a whole new meaning for me. Music was local at last. Strange comment, particularly when you consider that loads of bands have hailed from my ‘manor’ as a kid – Small Faces being just one I could mention (and did, just then), but this was NOW and I was THERE, and Wilko was the geezer who made people fear the Telecaster. Those long walks back from Canvey didn’t feel like a pain because I was on Canvey Island, with a guitar, and that was good enough for me. I would forget my lesson (stuff The Eagles) and – I know I did this – sing Feelgood songs whilst walking along the death-trap A130 back to Sadler’s Farm Junction and on to Pitsea High Street. Pre-internet meant that the only chance to see this geezer playing was an occasional OGWT delight, but I knew then that he must have had fingernails made out of diamond-coated bullets. My fingernails faint at the sight of a guitar string, but Wilko, without the use of a plectrum, could play for hours. Yes, there would be blood on the frets, but the fingernails remain – the sign of a master.
I introduced my eldest son to Dr Feelgood at the age of ten and, to my sheer joy, he took to them from the start. I can guarantee that when he gets his hands on my ipod in the car, ‘Roxette’ will be one of the first five songs that gets played.
There are a handful of musicians that have truly inspired me. Wilko is one of them. Others include: Pete Townshend (for everything he does, except for the occasional howler, but nobody’s perfect, right?); Hendrix (for his revolution); Robert Fripp (for his madness in the face of conspired sanity around him); Ray Davies (for the songs); David Gilmour (for the beautiful guitar solos). But Wilko gave me something else – as Graham Coxon aptly stated: ‘white-knuckle Telecaster abuse’. He was neither ashamed of where he came from or embarrassed about where he ended up. What more could anyone ask?”
Dave Pope, Jan 2013
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