Thursday, 23 October 2014

Pop Song Review: Meghan Trainor - All About That Bass

I've made no secret of the fact that I consider myself a male feminist. I spend a lot of time despairing at popular music for the... lets say "troubling" way Women's bodies are represented. It seems that the common counter to the male gaze within pop music is more objectification, but in an artificially empowered context.

Pictured: Empowerment
Enter Meghan Trainor....

Amy Winehouse for Soccer Moms

Who's song "All about that bass" is the latest entry in the grand tradition of Mika, Mix-A-Lot and Minaj: The "Body image empowerment song" is practically a cliche at this point, though it is refreshing to see such an original aesthetic take... 


Okay, but seriously, have you taken the time to listen to the lyrics? cos some of them are kinda troubling.

"Yeah, it's pretty clear, I ain't no size two
But I can shake it, shake it
Like I'm supposed to do"

Supposed to do? I don't remember that in the Pankhurst Trust's manifesto.

"I'm bringing booty back"

No you didn't, you can be as charmingly anachronistic as you want, but don't lie Meghan. Booty never left.

"Go ahead and tell them skinny bitches that"

1) projecting much? 
2) I won't help you spread your lies.

"No I'm just playing. I know you think you're fat"

Shut up Meg.

In conclusion, while the song does have it's flaws (it certainly could have used another draft of the lyrics) it's fun & catchy, and it's good that there is a voice for Women's issues, even if it's the voice of a grown woman who calls her ass her "Boom Boom" 

Wednesday, 15 October 2014


Just when it looked like Marvel was becoming predictable, they have thrown us a huge curveball.

We finally know what Robert Downey Jr. was talking about when he said that there he was working on a deal with Marvel to do something that wasn't Iron Man 4.  Downey's in the final stages of negotiations that'll bring Tony Stark in to Captain America 3 and begin the movies' take on Civil War.

Our heroes: a steroid abuser and a war profiteer

Wow... that's big

For those who don't know, Civil War is widely regarded as Marvels greatest comic crossover story, featuring an idealogical (and physical, because Superheroes) conflict between Iron Man and Captain America over a government act that will force Superheroes to register as government employees. Cap is anti-reg, leading a group of heroes as a resistance movement against Stark's gov funded pro-reg faction. Having Tony Stark as a well intentioned antagonist will likely split the fanbase, but from a storytelling perspective it's a great escalation of the Marvel Universe's themes of sacrificing freedom for security and points to the second Avengers movie showing a much darker side of Tony Stark.

Whose side are you on?

Monday, 13 October 2014

Song review: David Bowie - Sue (Or In a Season of Crime)

David Bowie has a new song out... and I don't know what to think about it.

It's very interesting... Blending a Jazz Fusion arrangement with Bowies distinctive vocal style for some pretty left-field melodic interplay, The main instrumental figure is pretty compelling, and the 7 minute runtime seemingly functions as a middle finger to homogenised modern pop sensibilities.

Pictured on the right: Modern Pop Sensibilities

Saying that, the whole thing seems a bit forced.

Did someone say "forced?"

From the intentionally cumbersome title, to the use of a genre that commercially peaked in the late 70's it all reeks of "Look how different I am" and although Bowie appears to be putting a lot of effort into distinguishing himself from his contemporaries ultimately it all comes out as quite derivative of two (admittedly distinctive) artists: Scott Walker and the Mahavishnu Orchestra.

So, is this where we've ended up? has Pop's great chameleon been reduced to copying his less successful former peers? or is it a scintillating new sound, guaranteed to put all these young pretenders in their place?

History will be the judge of this.

Thursday, 9 October 2014

Music Spotlight: Sidefields

Well, I'm back again!

This week I'm looking at a very intriguing band that goes by the name of Sidefields, their sound is kinda hard to pin down, I suppose the easiest comparison is a cross between a cleaner, slicker My Bloody Valentine & The Cure. Their new album "The Night" is out soon and a great combination of shoegaze and indie vibes, with a wonderfully eccentric lyrical flourish. Check out the song "The Night Is Ours" below.

Tuesday, 27 May 2014

Propagandhi: Potemkin City Limits album review

Propagandhi: Potemkin City Limits album review

So, I hadn't really listened to much by these guys from Canada before. My band's drummer kept banging on about them for some time, and they're not exactly without their punk rock credentials. So when we were coming back from playing a show in Lincolnshire a few weeks ago, we put it on to keep us awake. I ended up borrowing the album because it is just that good. It starts off with a few jazz chords, really bringing you in, and then BANG! not any louder, but with the ferocity of a wounded rhino with an adrenaline shot to the arse. The first three songs take up nearly a dozen minutes of your life but by hell, youíll never want them back. With lyrics about the state of the punk rock scene, social inequality and global poverty, Propagandhi arenít singing about anything new, but they do it with fresh eyes. FFO Unpretentious math-core, skate-punk, Fat Wreck Chords. 

 By Benny Hash

Wednesday, 21 May 2014

ITunes shuffle theatre: Episode 2

1. Los Del Mar - Macarena

2. Buddy Guy - What kind of woman is this?
3. Imelda May - It's good to be alive

4. The Supremes - Stop! In the name of love

Lauryn Hill - I used to love him

Tuesday, 20 May 2014

D-Rex, telegraphing the death of satire

I discovered these guys on my latest youtube trawl. Listening to a pair of ten year olds rhyme penis with venus and threaten to shoot me are par for the course in this line of work.

Still, at least it's better than 2 Chainz

I got nothing