Friday, 28 December 2007


why is it that any happy hardcore/ hard trance/ hardest dance/ hardstyle advert on the hits just leaves me confused, let alone hungry for more beats?

the advert pattern goes:
-blurb about how essential the mix is
-men who look like the temp guys who always get sacked from work who look forgettable talk about how essential the mix is
- underage children who are just looking not to get knocked back from a venue
talk about how essential the mix is

interspersed with this is literally 2 seconds of a speeded up vocal, followed by 5 seconds of moderate gabber techno / hoover synth pop, accompanied by a 3d logo of the artist name ( see ' STORMTROOPER' or 'DANNY REZJAM') clad all o'er in fluorescent yellow piping.



im not gonna buy. im hoping to cash in on pitchforkmedia's italodisco revival by xeroxing all the glass candy and chromatics stuff on gameboy before the NME slash all over it with their massive paws .

p.s i think people who like happy hardcore are the same people who like cars. i dont like cars either.

Sunday, 23 December 2007


predictable christmas number one here .
for this week, i decided to do everything live, instead of recording the backing separately and then singing over the top of it twice. so what you are hearing is me turning on the gameboy and then my very first attempt at singing this song, having listened to leons version numerous times... i think youll agree i definately nailed every note perfectly in the chorus.
i suppose the reason why the vocals are really low in all the recordings is because i dont have much faith in my voice.
my best tricks are:
fake robert smith.
but i think the whole point of this project is how i interpret and perform the song that can be seen as the most popular among the uk record buying public, and in exposing my weaknesses, rather than masking them it gives it more of a personal feel. so i think i will put the vocal track higher from now on, and try putting less effects on them.unless its properly shit.

the blackadder christmas special is a bit weak. if its on over christmas i probably wouldnt bother watching it. and id probably actually avoid the hits this time of year. cascada have taken a midi- version of last christmas by wham! and whacked a house beat on it. its really good, it blew my mind. and avid merrion just keeps getting funnier, do you not think! YOU SHOULD CHACK OUT HIS SONG HE HAS A GUY FROM THE BULLSEYE ON IT DO YOU REMEMBER BULLSEYES IT WAS POPLULR IN THE 80S LIKE CALVIN HARRISON AND IT HAS DAVINO MAKCAL SHE IS THE PERESTNER FROM BIG BROTHER IF YOU CAN RECALL IT.
If you really need a cover version of 'Last Christmas' this year, GOTO80's commodore 64 version( along with some other chiptune artistsrenditions of festive 'faves') can be found here. have a good one people.

Saturday, 22 December 2007


merry christmas to everyone.
here is a cover of mariah carey that might get you in the christmas mood. no dice on my front ,im afraid. gonna do some minimal wrapping of christmas presents tonight in some vain attempt to GET FUCKING FESTIVE. im my boredom this week, ive done leon jacksons song, im pretty damn sure its gonna be number 1, so ill upload that tommorow so i can have a few days holiday from gameboys, rush-released cover versions, predictable re-releases, and have a few well earned days rest with the folks drinking and watching 'the hits' til the wee small hours. then ill get back to sheffield, maybe watch 'the hits' and have some dutch style lager from spar. for a change.
thank you to everyone who has read the blog so far, i really appreciate the comments. hope you all have a wonderful christmas break.
p.s apologies for the wait to download these links, its only a temporary measure until jack returns from his holiday ruddy-faced and heavily laden with access to his webspace.

Thursday, 20 December 2007


LEONA IS DEAD LONG LIVE LEON. In the short stop gap between the inevitable X-Factor christmas number 1, we have this little lad. A charity cover of what a wonderful world, by eva cassidy and katie melua, which begs the question: is it acceptable to fancy someone who is dead? i totally would with eva cassidy, if you know what i mean. slight confusion this week involving me listening first to the actual song, and then to the my bloody valentine cover of this song to get 'in the mood', and getting to the end before i realised that it was a completely different song ( we have all the time in the world) oh well. regarding that my bloody valentine cover, its nowhere near as good as you think it would be. but its still fucking awesome. and its one of the two things they have done post loveless ( their wire cover is unbelievably brilliant). so heres my delay drenched cover that i did post-confusion.


my usual cohort jack fabian was unavailable for recording, so basically its my fault entirely.
onto recent music news, this leon lad seemed to win x factor, and there is a lot of contraversy regarding jammed lines according to the daily mail (WAS X FACTOR FIXED BY POLISH SEX GANG?DIANA SAYS 'NO TO SAME DIFFERENCE', and so on)and the gaggle of women in the kitchen on Floor 1 . personally i found many parallels in their inability to meet customers expectations during the x factor voting process, with that of the recent installation of new telephony throughout the call centre i work at. both seemed to be badly planned, and ill-fitting of the requirements of the end-user. rhydian has apparently just inked a deal with simon cowell for one million rods. good lad. didnt see that coming at all. totally blew my mind like 'who shot jr oh no it was a dream i am in the shower' shit.


really buzzing off covering that next week.

Tuesday, 11 December 2007


bah. i hate the way the bbc uk top 40 takes until monday night to properly update with last weeks positions and highest new entries. thinking i was really clever, i got really excited by the fact that mariah careys 'all i want for christmas is you' was really high up, and literally salivated at the chance to try and render the boss phil spector esque style production on the gameboys 4 channels. with no reverb option its probably gonna be the case that i would have just ramped up the white noise filter and make it sound like jesus and mary chain. i even drew the single cover. so ill just finish it as a christmas treat for you all.
anyway. leona lewis is still hanging out at number 1, so i have to cover elvis again. trying to find new ways of covering old songs is fun. for this one:
- i didnt listen to it
- i didnt get any kind of tabulature
i simply took the lyrics and thought what kind of song i would write to fit these.
i just took these from one of the numerous soft porn and lyrics websites which are strewn across the web. i sung these from 007lyrics ( i dont know why james bond is involved in this either) :
Lord almighty,I feel my temperature rising
Higher higher
Its burning through to my soul
Girl, girl, girl
You gonna set me on fire
My brain is flaming
I dont know which way to go
Your kisses lift me higher
Like the sweet song of a choir
You light my morning sky
With burning love
Ooh, ooh, ooh,I feel my temperature rising
Help me, Im flaming
I must be a hundred and nine
Burning, burning, burning
And nothing can cool me
I just might turn into smoke
But I feel fine
Cause your kisses lift me higher
Like a sweet song of a choir
And you light my morning sky
With burning love
Its coming closer
The flames are reaching my body
Please wont you help me
I feel like Im slipping away
Its hard to breath
And my chest is a-heaving
Lord almighty,Im burning a hole where I lay
Cause your kisses lift me higher
Like the sweet song of a choir
You light my morning sky
With burning love
With burning love
Ah, ah, burning love
Im just a hunk, a hunk of burning love
Just a hunk, a hunk of burning love
Just a hunk, a hunk of burning love
Just a hunk, a hunk of burning love
Just a hunk, a hunk of burning love
Just a hunk, a hunk of burning love
how i interpreted this was:
the opening line 'Lord almighty,I feel my temperature rising' is HELLA SASSY, and the lyrics are all about feeling really warm around women.
So, i assembled a crack team of my most 'sexy' and 'hipshaking' musical tricks:
-a gameboy sample of the cowbell setting from the TR-808 ( similar to that used in ' I wanna dance with somebody' by Kevin Costners piece in that film.)
-a slippery lead line like all good G-Funk songs ( aint nothin but a g thang, anything off doggystyle by snoop dogg, most of all eyez on me by 2 pac)
and, cough:
-a 12 strong bar of back to back hand claps ( this reminded me of stock aitken and waterman (SAW). but then that reminded me of sam fox, who they wrote 'nothings gonna stop me now with'. i thought of sam fox briefly( around five minutes, enough time to source some badly rendered zx spectrum soft porn of her with her chest out) in terms of being 'sexy' and then dismissed this as a bad job. shes no leona. or amelle. on a side note, that song, along with most other SAW songs have incredibly underwhelming choruses which dont kick in or get high enough to really sound great. they kind of just grimace a bit . make it seem like they are trying.)
one final thing i noticed. you know when a vocal just leaps out of a page, and makes you think ' how did you know how i feel? how do you know me so well? i dont even know you' and your jaw just drops. and you cant stop listening to that one bit because it sums up every point of your life thus far, and you feel like you have found what you are looking for? this happened to me. im so lucky. the line is.
Just a hunk, a hunk of burning love
Besides being freezing and alone in an attic room with a broken radiator, and weighing about 8 and a half stone, i think this pretty much sums me up.
Its quite funny though the number of people who claim to not like pop music but then can always name at least one or two pop songs in the last 3 months that they have listened to that they think are amazing. the thing is though, its probably the same for any genre of music, if you think about it. how many stand out, stand alone tracks from albums, blogs, podcasts, mobile phones on buses have you heard in the last 3 months that you think ' yes, this is just right'? there is a lot of good music. but there is only a very small amount of it in any category which is amazing. most of its just fine.

Tuesday, 4 December 2007


this is the highest new entry: elvis fucking presley with 'an american trilogy'. no, me neither. other notable highest new entries ( read rereleases) include:
-driving home for christmas
-its the most wonderful time of the year
in christmas related news, i no longer have the ability to recognise when christmas decorations have been put up . it took me 2 hours to realise why i was getting pieces of dangling crepe paper stuck in my poor quality beard. i put this down to the council erecting the 'seasons greetings' decoration outside my window in OCTOBER.


seeing as this was a re-release , and im very cynical about the fact that a song that no one i asked seemed to know what it went like.. i refused to listen to this. i simply took the lyrics, and chords, and made something up around this. if anyone can be bothered listening to the original properly and let me know how close i am do so. i opened it up on youtube to watch the video but then got bored and promptly sacked it right off.

seeing as the chart is looking towards the past a lot this time of year, it brings me onto the topic of the song 'heartbroken' by T2 featuring Jodie Aysha. and the subject of bassline niche- the new genre sweeping the nation. having worked in a used car dealership washing cars on the forecourt listening to radio 1 throughout the 'glory days' of uk garage circa '99: dj luck and mc neat, dj pied piper, fucking oxide and neutrino ( IVE JUST BEEN SHOT EVERYONE STOP GETTING SHOT WTF) i fail to see how this differs in anyway, or has developed in this 8 year gap? my other theory is that music trends are gradually turning in on themselves. evidence:

the advent the electro clash scene around 99 - mainly piss poor weak 80's revival. 20 year gap (approximately)

the advent of''nu-rave' - approximately say 15-16 years post the whole original tent, gloves, glowstick, global hypercolour, shamen etc.

So, as you see, revivals are coming in thick and fast at more regular intervals. I am hypothesising the following to occur in the new year:

January 2008
- 33 1/3 book on the making of Enter Shikari's seminal album 'Ride the Skies',
a brand new Shitdisco retrospective compilation with extensive liner notes and recollections from one of the most scottish ones. New Young Pony Club to reform to play coachella for 14 million dollars. Calvin Harris bankrupts Creation following an ill-advised, poorly selling covers album , the front cover of which features him in drag.

February 2008
"All Tommorows parties are thrilled that Leona Lewis has agreed to put aside their differences to perform her classic album 'Spirit' in its entirety. The album, released in late 2007, shaped an entire generation, and its breathtaking vision and influence has filtered down into so many of the groundbreaking artists we hear today: Rhydian, them two big lads who won tv programs once, Kerry Katona, that one from hollyoaks (any), the one who went out with teddy sheringham and still won, George Bests, menswe@r, north and south ( NA NA NA NA NA NA NA NA NA - NO SWEAT)." TICKETS £25 EXCLUDING BOOKING FEE.STANDING ONLY

ive went off again so im just going ok

Wednesday, 28 November 2007


my shayyyyne ward cover of his song breathless is here you. as leona lewis, a fellow x factor winner is still at number one, i covered the highest new entry, in at number 6. i struggled finding out what this actually was, seeing as the singles area in virgin and zavvi were very little help. i went with the uk top 40 highest entry from bbc, as it was the original inspiration for this project. counting downloads makes things so much more complicated for me to work out. for example, the new sugababes song is at number 85 through downloads , even though it isnt even out physically until next week. and according to the daily star i flicked through in the canteen at work, the official highest new entry is katherine jenkins , with rejoice ( written by gary barlow, apparently).for fucks sake, if people cant even make it as easy as possible for me to find out what songs are the most popular, why bother at all? GODSAKE. maybe the fact that the daily star chart section was sandwiched between extremely detailed 'im a celebrity' updates on the fit one from hollyoaks ' chest and badly taken shots of a distressed amy winehouse should have been a dead giveaway to seek out a more official source straight away. back to the charts though,i really hate the idea of digital downloads ( free ones are completely fine, ive looked into it and its FINE. no qualms). personally i like having some kind of token for my monetary support, be it a cd/ vinyl / complimentary dvd/ fold out poster of fit one from band on sofa. possibly this is because im massively into having material items to surround myself with, and the uk public are the ones who are in the right? in other recent music news, i heard a bit of the soulja boy song that they taught me how to do the dance to in the Metro. nice steel drums sample, lads. keep on dancing.
On to the song itself then. working it out on guitar, the chorus has a similar chord progression to the breakdown in the get up kids song 'a newfound interest in massachusetts'. anyone? or is this just another case of me making things up which are FACTUALLY INCORRECT.*
I felt very uncomfortable singing a love song which had references to having children, and what our children would look like.i fail to see how this song could make me feel in the mood for love, or summarise our relationship, as these are the two least likely things that i would want to think about when i would be engaged in said act. i would find this most offputting. in all fairness , this songs quite possibly geared towards a different market , besides myself. i probably still would though. nice stubble.

p.s ive realised ive drawn the album cover and not the single cover .damn these single and album track similarities. its a better shot , so you get a better impression of what he looks like on this one, as im sure you'll agree.

*see earlier post regarding poirot/ that new take that song . probably loads more.

Friday, 23 November 2007

seeing as our leona is still there...

I decided to do a cover of a song i think is fucking awesome. I implore you to legally download/ buy outright this song... as i think its one of the best pop songs of recent years. You can download this song here. From now on though, based on what greg states, every week when the person at number one stays for a consecutive week... i will cover the next highest entry in that week, and have it up in time for the next top 40 countdown. This leads me neatly onto a feature i will call:

When i was at school, we used to hang around in this guys house after school, partly because his mum worked 2-10 shifts and rarely came back before we had left. This gentleman only listened to 2 cds: the first sugababes cd, and the theme to Big Brother 1. On one occasion, too many people were sat on a bed. One beam of his bed broke. We ended up repairing this situation using:
- massive quantities of parcel string
- sellotape
- very coarse rope
-a jar of 2p coins in a sweet jar held under the beam in question as support.

Seeing as I havent been there for 6 years, I can only assume that is still the case. Updates as we get them.

Saturday, 17 November 2007

ayo technology

having consumed vast quantities of both dutch style lager and 'the hits' over the past week, i feel that im in a good position to comment on what songs are being repeated on an hourly basis. to be fair , its probably on a two hourly basis. but first, i watched the documentary about east 17 reforming. which was fucking awesome. ive seen it before, but it was well worth seeing again. tony mortimer looks and acts exactly the same as the office era martin freeman. brian harvey is a very confused, difficult person to understand. his arguments against reforming the band were pretty sound. for a start:
- he doesnt like the music tony writes
- he wants to make 'proper music, like r' n b'
- he gets punched by tony
this is all completely fine. but then tony leaves the band, they are pretty screwed because he writes the all songs, and i was of the position that the music they made was r'n b ish anyway? the programme ended abruptly, and having done extensive research ( wikipedia) i await their charmingly entitled comeback single ' FUCK THAT' with bated breath. spring 2k8 yo.maybe im missing the point a bit though. brian harvey did manage to run his own head over with his own car while he was driving. suicide attempt, cry for help, drink/ drug abuse, whatever. the guys got talent, this being possibly the most implausible story for a serious injury i have ever heard.
i had a plan to compare the ever- revolving sugababes lineup ( now only containing founding member keisha) to that of Anton Newcombe's Brian Jonestown Massacre. But it didnt really compare very well, so decided not to mention it. Instead, im going to tell you about how awesome Amelle is and not give any real reasons for this. MY FAVOURITE SUGABABE EVA. Incidentally, Heidi drops serious points for being involved in an early incarnation of Atomic Kitten ( members of which went on to join Iceland, the frozen food supermarket).
which brings me on to my final point. ayo technology is fucking awesome. the backing track sounds like the sound of the SID chip on the commodore 64. it has timbaland, 50 cent and jt on it. and the lyrics are as follows:

Why don't you come over here?
You got me sayin
Why don't you sit down on top of me?
Ayo!!!! I'm tired of usin' technology
I need you right in front of me

I think its the first song ive heard about the perils of using social networking sites for romantic purposes, and the shortfalls of its lack of tangibility. anyway. im tired of using technology, so bye. ayo indeed.

Wednesday, 14 November 2007

leona lewis cover.

Here is my cover of the song here.

And my picture makes our Leona more like Andrew WK. Which in no way is a bad thing.

After the drink-addled haze of my first post, im in a better position to comment on what this project is all about... so....

The rules i'm following for this entire project are inspired from the Dogme 95 movement of film makers, who aimed to distill film making into its simplest form, cutting away all the effects and post production editing that modern facilities provide, by imposing a set of restrictions to be followed by those in the collective. I have wanted to do something using this kind of restriction for a long time, but only recently after getting into making music on the Gameboy enforced by the restrictions of only 4 tracks have I found an outlet for this. So for this project the aim is to:

Buy commercially and produce a version of whichever song is at number 1 following the UK Top 40 countdown before the next weeks number 1 is announced, regardless of how finished this is, for the next year.

This song will consist only of:
-A backing track composed on gameboy, comprising 4 channels of 4 bit sound.
-2 vocal tracks , one for lead vocals and one for backing ( preferably in one take, and without any effects on the vocals. but as heard on the Leona Lewis cover, I am probably going to need to cover it in reverb and have a second swing at it.)

Along with this, I am going to draw a picture of the singles cover, and I am only allowed one attempt at this.

My aims for this project are still slightly garbled, and lacking a lot of focus, but I suppose what im trying to do is make music that seems popular to the majority appeal to myself by drawing attention to my own limitations and mistakes, as opposed to making something that is massively airbrushed , or Pro-Tools has been used to strip any kind of warmth from. When I see bands live, i don't generally watch to see how closely they resemble their recorded output, i watch to see the knowing glances between guitarists as one of them hits a duff note, or how everyone will swivel 90 degrees to cast scorn on a drummer who has missed literally one beat in the entire set. Its these mistakes which make us human, and so im hoping that I can learn a lot from listening to the most popular song in the UK that week, and trying to find out why I would find it appealing. Its going to be a long year.

Tuesday, 13 November 2007

game on

oh, and ive finished my leona lewis cover. all i need is a scanner for the picture, and jacks webspace, and im done. tommorow .

im going off to listen to something which isnt going to be played absolutely everywhere for the rest of the year.

rule da worldz

the first four piano chords in the take that single are the same as the theme tune for poirot. ive not looked into it, and im unlikely to do so. so, based on this assumption alone, its no wonder that they are doing so well, with those kind of influences behind them. i fucking love the early poirot stuff. DAVID SUCHET OMG.

Monday, 12 November 2007

keep bleeding

so, i bought the leona lewis single from virgin today, cost me two pounds, which i was quite pleased with. i should probably say that i bought it from zavvi. but no. its a bad name. i spent about 10 minutes milling purposefully between the upstairs aisles before eventually finding where the singles are kept. its not very big at all. started listening to it when i got back after work, and its pretty awesome when you strip it all back. the hammond organy sound is boss and im particularly smitten by the beepy, popping percussion sound running throughout, and the crunchy drums are pretty sick. decided i would need to make some changes, so i got rid of about the last 30 seconds of her running through scales on my version. i cant and never will be able to do anything involving more than one octave in a song. the chords running throughout caused a bit of problems, so i pretty much stripped it back to the 4 chords running through the entire song. keeping it pretty straight up. i have never really heard of this person until over the weekend, but looking at the album sleeve she looks very attractive, and has a very nice voice. i only hope my biro drawing of the singles cover with her on it will do her justice. we can only hope. tommorow im going to finish the vocals, record them and hopefully have everything up by wednesday.

Sunday, 11 November 2007

the beginning.

my sister dropped me off in kettering station today after a weekend spent drinking, listening to bad cover bands, watching the hits on freeview and commenting on the new song by Leona Lewis, and how it isn't 'actually that bad really, if im being honest' when i realised that pop music can be the most wonderful thing ever if executed correctly. So, throughout that two and a half hour journey back to Sheffield, i thought of a plan.

the thing that bugs me is the fact that no one really cares about whats popular in the whole mainstream, top 40 anymore, whether it be down to people downloading music, having it on their fucking phone to annoy people with on buses, or just being disheartened by the whole x-factor/ celebrity love kitchen situation that it finds itself in. i think this is really sad. as a child, we used to have the radio on a lot, and when there was a song I really wanted to hear, i used to just wait for what seemed like days before it came on, and then end up only recording half of it because id not pressed the buttons down right or just pressed play on the tape or something.. but i digress slightly. the fact of the matter is, that you can pretty much hear anything you want, whenever you want, anytime of day using the internet, and i think thats killed the whole communal listening idea that radio provided. and i cant remember the last single i bought that was in the chart. so, my plan is as follows:

for the next year from this day forward, i will listen to and watch every video that is in the top ten that week,buy every new single that is at number one in the UK Top 40 chart, and with this single i will strip it down, and rework it into a song composed on little sound dj using the gameboy, record this with myself singing, and place it for free download on here. the reason im using a gameboy for this is for the simple reason that its restrictive. you can only have up to 4 different channels of sound playing at one point, so i will have to be economic with what i keep in each song. so its going to be how i interpret each pop song that the public sees as being the most worthy of their hard earned cash, each week, for the next year. so, im going to get on with transcribing bleeding love by leona lewis, and ill let you know how it goes before the top 40 countdown next sunday.