Tag Archives: LV

Currently Feelin’ (music)

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Since Twitter, Facebook & Tumblr, make it so easy to shout about likes and dislikes, my currently feelin’ posts are fewer and further between, but it’s always nice to gather them all in one place aint it? Also, there’s either an absolute harvest-like glut of good music out there at the moment, or as a result of being back in South London & organising events again, or both, I’m particularly tuned in at the moment.

This one’s dedicated to fellow music blogger Martin Blackdown Clark, cos he used to appreciate my Currently Feelin’ posts AND he’s released a new album called Dasaflex with his partner in Grime, Dusk that I’m definitely feelin’. So much so, that when I received it, it was pumped out very, very loudly in my café, boings and all. Which is great since as the café is part of Antenna Studios, nobody really minds, but also, a bit risky as we’re on a very quite road and Blackdown & Dusk’s edgier tunes such as Hypergrime have the ability to scare our milder-eared neighbours into never returning for a slice of good organic, locally made cake again (I promise, this is not a sneaky way of advertising the café, merely the truth!).

That sad, the LP’s opening track Lonely Moon feat. Farrah is outstanding in it’s beauty and delicacy and would hopefully entice them back again. What I like particularly about this album and funnily enough some other bits and bobs I’ve been listening to recently, is that it sounds very much like a culmination of a good few years spent living in LDN, dancing to various underground genres, absorbing the vibes of the city, so for me it’s full of recognisable sounds, things that remind me of the likes of Wiley and early dazed DMZ, albeit with a heavy dose of House and Techno vibes, something that I’m personally not quite as familiar with but definitely appreciative of

Mala in Cuba and LV’s Sebenza are two more albums that have been pumped out of the café system; the latter of which I hope LV don’t mind me saying, is incredibly sexy and make me want to dance seductively in a club in front of a man that I fancy. Would be quite cool if that man was Okmalumkoolkat actually, who voices eight of the tracks on the album and who I’ve had a distant crush on ever since he got his belly out in the Boomslang video. There are so many good tracks on this album, all of them made even more interesting by the team of South African MCs such as Spoek Mathambo, Ruffest and the aforementioned Okmalumkoolkat, who introduce to my ears, a whole vocabulary of words like the title Sebenza (“work,” in Zulu) and Pantsula (which as this article explains is a type of dress, a cultural expression and a dance).

Mala in Cuba is an incredible album from a consistently solid producer; like most of Mala’s production, it’s both astoundingly deep and really edgy- some of then tunes, like Changuito have got the marching style of many of Mala’s productions, making you wanna bounce and contort your face at the same time  others, such as Calle F are sunnier and percussive and are clearly made in Cuba; as Laurent Fintoni described somewhere on t’internet, the whole album is very much South London meets Cuba via Belgium, where Mala currently resides. What’s more, it’s been getting Mala lots of press and attention (my own Mum was happy to see him in the Sunday papers a few months back) which is well deserved, being that he has always kept his music fresh, pioneering and unstuck. Very much looking forward to the Mala in Cuba Live event in November:

Other Current Feelin’s come from acts that have or are due to play at the Café Thing @ Antenna Studios; putting on a fortnightly live music event takes quite a bit of research, being that we’re striving to offer original music from musicians who may not normally play in Palace. There is of course, an element of luck and synergy involved in finding acts to play, Cloudier Skies who played our 3rd Café Session for example, did so because one half of the duo, David, came in for a coffee one day and gave me their Sound Cloud link. Their live set, surpassed all expectations and was, for a number of reasons, my favourite act to play a session thus far.

This Saturday’s (6th October) Jono McCleery gig, came about also, slightly through chance, myself and The Antenna crew bumped into him at a party; I’ve since been listening to his tunes a lot, trying to work out exactly which one is my favourite and trying to pin his style down so that I can write about it correctly. I haven’t managed to do so and I’m still undecided. Sometimes it’s Stand Proud, sometimes Gymnopedist and sometimes Tomorrow (above), the album version of which has an almost celestial introduction.

Quadron 2

Quadron are on the list because, I had the privilege of seeing them live at The Jazz Café last week; where Coco (the singer) performed an outstandingly beautiful acappella that had us all on the verge of tears before launching into the gorgeous motown sounding Pressure, lifting the whole audience up into a whoop of relief.

And last but not least, of the music that I’m currently feelin’ are South Londoners Yola Fatoush whose music and website are ridiculously interesting and ever so mysterious and Chet Baker, who I’ve never otherwise listened to before and whose voice is compellingly spooky. The contrast between his singing style and the lyrics of the song, My Funny Valentine (above), absolutely kills me.

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Runnin’ the Café Thing @ Antenna Studios…

Antenna Studios has been in my radar since South London Press newspaper days and as a resident of the Upper Norwood / Crystal Palace area, it has been a consistent go-to for a range of music and art happenings, some of which I’ve blogged about over the years.

So, it was with delight that I was offered the opportunity to manage the new Café Thing at the studios upon my return to South London after 2 and half years in Paris.

The café was built upon an idea of providing a comfortable space for the musicians, dancers, actors, photographers and artists who use the studios, and of course a refreshing space for the local community to sit and chill, work, collaborate and network. It’s working name the café thing has stuck, because clearly, it’s more than a café and because in Scandinavia (where the owner of the studios originates), “thing,” means meeting place.

The past 7 days of running the café thing have proven to be joyous, exciting and chatty. Having only ever been behind a bar one once before (while documenting Converse’s log cabin at Pitchfork Festival), I’ve come to realise that the role is an abstract mix of hostess, counsellor, child-minder, publicist and curator (& welcoming a fair amount of musicians & superheroes). It’s pretty much my dream job.

LV in the building     

People come in for a coffee and before you know it, they’ve either told you their entire life story, a story about Crystal Palace’s rich local history, what they’re growing in their garden or which band they’ve seen recently. A guy called Brian’s initial visit for a coffee which involved the names of the houses on the street, cricket bats he’d bought at Bambino’s, trips to Paris and more, was proceeded today, with a thank-you for a winning horse that’d he’d betted on called Dancing with Georgie.

     

It’s a nice place to be, made nicer by the fact that people genuinely appreciate our no fuss approach to coffee which here, is quite simply, strong, Colombian and filter (often served with a bowl of Icelandic chocolate raisins). Also appreciated is the fact that it’s somewhat of a hide-away from the Crystal Palace triangle, which as lovely as it is, is also the prime place to be spotted by EVERYONE when you’re looking like death-warmed-up crawling along the pavement in search of hangover grease.

   

pic by Rachael W.

We’ve just issued our first Antenna Connexion newsletter with details of our forthcoming events which commence tomorrow evening (Friday 17th of August) with my girl Breezy (pictured above) and her Spaceshipman.

Next month I will be showing some photos as part of our new photography & film event.

Check our TUMBLR and give me a shout if you would like to get involved with the café musically, artistically or otherwise!