2015 News Items
2015 News Items
10.12.15 The Great Smoking Ant Cough-Out. Why not stuff your Xmas e-stocking with half a decade’s worth of toe-curling, hair-tapping, head-slapping, thigh-banging Antastic rockpopaboogie? C’mon!
Get all 11 Smoking Ant Records releases available on Bandcamp and save 50%. That’s right, just £14 gets you unlimited streaming via the free Bandcamp app, plus high-quality downloads of BUBBLEGUMBOOTS, Godot Woz Ere, Two Camels, BIG BUN, Relaxing At Gunpoint, I Want One Too E.P., Seconds, undoneup, and 3 more blasterpieces. By Dickens, let your bugs hum a merrier carol this Christmas.
26.11.15 G.T. Thomas has initiated a monthly podcast called ‘Despite Musical Differences‘ where she will be discussing aspects of music-making, both specific and peripheral with tra-la-la troubadours.
23.11.15 Horrible Head A couple of items pertaining to the 11th Most Forgotten Band Of The Eighties: First, and most blatantly, is Dave Pope’s recent solo performance of ‘Pretend’, a Horrible Head song co-written by him and Paul Hamilton. It’s a rough, soundboard recording but is more venomous than a snake’s hankie, and it’s the opening track here.
Secondly, and a tad more tenuous, is an article by Hamilton about Hüsker Dü for a blogozine thing called ‘Superbad’.
14.11.15 Mephisto 6 Paul Hamilton had been fiddling with a ‘duet for piano and bombs’ for a few days before the Paris massacre on Friday the 13th of November. His reaction to the outrage and horror was to put the track – ‘Nightlights (STP)’ – out here in its raw and ugly state. Why? Because its wrongness seems right in this context.
14.9.15 Babylon Squeak “Spoon In Your Sink”, the lead track on the “BUBBLEGUMBOOTS” download E.P., now has itself a video of sorts, shot at the Private View of the ‘London, New York, Paris, Munich’ Pop Art exhibition that opened at The A-Side B-Side Gallery in London’s notorious E8 on September 10th. With luminaries and bloomin’ ‘airies such as Spizz of Spizz Energi, Bill Wyman of The Rolling Something-Or-Other, Karen Birch, Ray Gange of Clash film ‘Rude Boy’ renown, Micko Westmoreland and the frankly brilliant, let’s face it, Mikey Georgeson lending an off-duty magic, you can see it here if you so wish.
8.9.15 Babylon Squeak Today, of course, would have been the 90th and 94th birthdays of, respectively, Peter Sellers and Harry Secombe, so what better time, then, for Babylon Squeak to release their strangelovin’ allrightJackin’ pantherpinkin’ therebein’ Goonish three-song collection “BUBBLEGUMBOOTS”? Featuring audio and visual input from Smoking Ant tobacco-leaf carriers Andy Thomson (Yellowjack, Reticents), Malcolm Gayner (Reticents, Bisonics, Yellowjack), Si Beex (Bisonics), Karen Birch (Reticents) and Dancin’ Dave Pope (Yellowjack), “BUBBLEGUMBOOTS” will put a sing in your song, a thing in your thong and a Ying in your Tong.
26.7.15 SOUND AND VISION. Ah, that’s sweet – someone noticed that it’s our half-decade birthday (a Quinquennium, if you please) and marked the non-occasion with a Top 10 of our various artists’ videos. Trot along here and see what these blogging scamps thought of our retina-ruining, eardrum-walloping efforts.
5.7.15. Smoking Ant Records To mark five years of making a racket in this business, but failing to stir up any business in this racket, we are making a present of our goods to you by reducing the prices of our download catalogue on bandcamp.com and furthermore slashing the CDs in our cornered shop. (Remember that there are no hidden charges here. All postage and packaging costs are included in the stated price.)
If anyone’s wondering why we’ve been uncharacteristically silent this year, it’s not through lack of trying. The truth is that there ARE some ditties in a semi-finished state but we haven’t been able to complete them… YET.
28.5.15 Yellowjack A & E departments of hospitals the world over have wilted from the uber-glut of emergency cases of busted guts, slapped thighs and violently tickled ribs that have resulted from the news that your friendly neighbourhood Smoking Ant, as a consequence of upgrading its Mac computer to Yosemite OS X, has lost all the film works that were in states of progress and stored on Final Cut Pro X (an application with which Yosemite is incompatible). Unluckily for our detractors, one video has survived the massacre. The edit was only 80% finished but you’ll get the general idea. It’s for the Yellowjack track ‘Everyone Likes This’ and it’s here.
27.5.15 Yellowjack If you’ve long lingered over the sleeve of ‘Godot Woz Ere’ and found it pleasing to the peepers, wot with its conceptual continuity and all that, then we insist you strut forth to http://www.davepope.nz/ this very instant and investigate Yellowjack’s singist and guitarer Dancing “Dave” Pope’s secret life as graphic designer. His portfolio will tantalise, mesmerise and pop yer eyes.
27.04.15. Cross-pollination of various Smoking Ant alumni here as Dave Pope (of Yellowjack) designs the website for Doug Murphy (of Bisonics and, er, Doug Murphy & Paul Hamilton) and his non-musical project, IQ Rooms. If your idea of fun is being locked in a room and having to solve a series of logic puzzles to enable your escape – and you’re in Norway – then this is the game for you. http://iqrooms.com/
20.5.15 Bisonics Si Beex has composed and performed the music for a short film about ‘The Hidden World Of FND (Functional Neurological Disorder)’ and you can watch it/hear him here.
25.4.15 Yellowjack, Doug Murphy & Paul Hamilton, etc Call it commercial suicide but we have decided to remove the digital download versions of the Smoking Ant catalogue from practically all websites except bandcamp. The reason for this is aesthetic as well as economic: The audio quality of your mp3 is too poor to justify the price set by the domainiacs. You’re not getting enough megabyte for your megabuck. We make the exception for bandcamp because they provide the option of the higher quality FLAC. Just in case you think we’re getting our bat’s ears in a twist, here is an example of how much musical information is lost when an audio file (of an a cappella performance) is compressed to mp3 size: http://theghostinthemp3.com/
25.2.15 Yellowjack I think we can safely assume that the Hogmanay celebrations are almost at a close, so to welcome what’s left of the New Year the Caledonian faction of Yellowjack (Wee Davey McPope, Laird Tweedy McThomson and Hamish McHamsporran O’McMacBagpipes) have slung together a filmette for their ‘Going Slowhere’ song which you can peer-ooze right this very here.
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