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Ash Blur Charlatans UK Erik Blood Happy Mondays Imaginary Scoop James Jarvis Cocker Kurt Bloch Lo-Fi Lush Marco Collins Oasis Pulp Suede Supergrass The La's The Stone Roses

Let your Brit-Pop flag fly!!! {with a dance party, brit-pop karaoke, unibrows and more…}

Britpop Seattle!

Britpop runs in my veins.  For the anglophile music geeks amongst us, there is no greater way to electrify the room than to say words like Pulp, Supergrass, Lush, Suede, Elastica, James, Ride, Charlatans, Ash, Blur … oh yeah, and Oasis.

Finally there is way for us to celebrate our love of the parklife.  Mark your calendars for:

The Good Mixer: a britpop dance party
Thursday, April 17, 2014 at the Lo-Fi | 21+ | $8

The evening marks the 20 year anniversary of two very important britpop albums: Blur's Parklife + Pulp's His-n-Hers with a  dance party hosted by Marco Collins with DJ sets by Erik Blood, DJ Shannon (KEXP), Kurt Bloch and more!

Also of very important note, there will be BRITPOP KARAOKE!  I feel like I've waited my whole life for this. Finally, we can have a sing along to Lush's "Ladykillers" and do our best Jarvis impression as we sing, "I said I'll see what I can do."  Imaginary Dana and I will be hosting this karaoke portion and we are ready to cheer on all your Stone Roses / La's / Adorable / Happy Mondays dreams. (I know we have a lot of them!)

Speaking of sweet Jarvis, there's going to be a Jarvis Cocker dance-off (judged by Imaginary Amie, Imaginary Dana, and myself). And if you don't feel like dancing, there will be giveaways for the most surly Oasis unibrows and you can power up with fish-n-chips from Nosh Food Truck or one of the themed drinks:  “Common Peeber” (PBR + shot of whiskey), “Beetlerum” (rum + coca-cola)… AND there will also be a photo booth complete with 90’s gear (accessories provided by Red Light Vintage)!

Basically, it's going to be the best Britpop dance party this side of Glastonbury… and doors are at 8pm.

In the meantime, you can take a quiz or three (although, you probably already have):

Categories
Jarvis Cocker Record Review Rough Trade Records

Further Complications

Fathers, lock up your daughters. Jarvis is back, babies, and he has come to rock your socks (and possibly your panties) off. He emerges from Steve Albini’s Electrical Audio Studio, ribald and triumphant to present his second solo-project album, Further Complications on the Rough Trade Records Label. While playing the Pitchfork Festival last year in Chicago, bassist Steve Mackey made the suggestion they work with Albini on this album, as it was incredibly cost effective (about half the price to record stateside), and they were already in Chicago. The result is one loud, sexy, rock-n-roll album. It is a far cry from the richer, more orchestral Richard Hawley-produced Jarvis, but it is a logical and interesting direction for Cocker, one that he should continue to explore.

In interviews, Cocker mentioned he wanted this album to be a more cohesive, band-driven effort, rather than doing all of the composition himself and presenting it to the band to play. The effort is apparent in the music. Most every track is gritty and guitar heavy, in classic Albini fashion, and has truly excellent percussion- there are stompers, clappers, and driving punk beats. An additional treat can be found in Steve Mackey, the bassist playing saxophone on “Homewrecker!” He played saxophone for Iggy and the Stooges as well, and brought the “street walkin cheetah” heat needed to the song. There are interesting deviations and returns to classic form as well, for those who like the softer side of Jarvis- the breathy, dreamy disco-sampled “You’re In My Eyes (Discosong)” could have very well been a track on This is Hardcore or Separations. The denser, more richly instrumented “Slush” could have well been on Jarvis. “Pilchard” is a strange, psychedelic instrumental track, punctuated only by Cocker moaning “Ohhhhhh…” at intervals.

Cocker is a chameleon to be sure, but, at his core, the same- venomous, tawdry, and incendiary. He continues to explore his time-honored themes of sex, malaise, death, and indecision on this album. It is no secret he is recently separated from his wife as of late, and it would appear as though he took a page from Sting’s mopey Synchronicity diary (Did anyone else find it EXTREMELY creepy that that was a post-divorce album?) and perhaps funneled some misplaced ennui into this album. It is a bit duplicitous- it sounds fun, crazy, and free, but underneath there is a sadness to the lyrics that would seem to indicate that the man behind the strut is licking a wound or two (see “You’re In My Eyes," "Hold Still," "Slush").

As a somewhat rabid Jarvis / Pulp / Relaxed Muscle fan, I would rather be in a multiple car pile-up or chew glass than say a word sideways against the man, but I will say his usual quick wit and skill with lyrics fall a little flat in places on the album. The music does most of the heavy lifting on each track, and at times it would appear as though he dashed something off as an afterthought and called them lyrics. This appeared to be exceptionally true of the brain-searing "Angela." It had the foundation of a truly fantastic Jarvis track- an insanely catchy hook, a few well-placed barbs, but then disintegrates into repeating the word “Angela” over and over again (it is spectacular anyways, but a bit like eating a cupcake without frosting). “Homewrecker!” suffers a similar fate. The lackluster lyrics were completely digested by the self-described “absolute racket” of the saxophone, drums, and guitar. With such a title, one would anticipate that this track would be Jarvis at his most dramatic and histrionic, but there was almost a feeling that he just shrugged his shoulders and said “Meh. That’ll do.”

This is not to say, however, that his lyrics are not complete brilliance when he’s on. On this album, he is the girl with the curl in the middle of his forehead. When it’s bad, it’s still listenable, even good. When he is good, he is knee-buckling. Some of his finer witticisms include the following:

Further Complications– “Don’t write a novel. A shopping list is better. It’s a complicated boogie, and I don’t know no better.”
Angela“I feel the sap rising tonight. A dry stick at the end of a branch. With an overzealous hand. He can’t glue it back, no. Snapped off by Angela”
Leftovers– This track is full of some of his best puns: “I met her at the museum of paleontology. And I make no bones about it.” “He says he loves you like a sister. I guess that’s relative.”
I Never Said I Was Deep“My morality is shabby, my behavior unacceptable. I’m not looking for a relationship, just a willing receptacle.” Bonus for the fact that he said he wanted the words “I never said I was deep” engraved on his headstone.
Fuckingsong– This is a song for an imaginary lover: “And this way, there won’t be any mess, as I assure there would be in the flesh…” Filth! Art!
Caucasian Blues“I’ve heard it said you are hung like a white man.”

Further Complications is an album that will always be in rotation once heard. It is a beast of a completely different stripe for Cocker, and the evolution suits him well. It’s bawdy, bold, and beautiful, not unlike the man himself.

Categories
Imaginary Scoop Jarvis Cocker

New Jarvis Cocker Video: "Angela"

Hey Young Rock-n-Rollers,

Do you belive in magic? To hell with David Blaine, there is real magic in the spindly legs of one Mr. Jarvis "I am 6 feet of of filthy personified" Cocker.

His video for "Angela," a single off of his new album Further Complications is now available  for your viewing pleasure. This footage is part of the "Jarvis is Making an Exhibition of Himself" week long band practice last week in Paris. This man moves like nothing I have ever seen. Sometimes it looks sexy, sometimes it looks awkward, sometimes it looks painful, but it always looks like Jarvis, which is to say, like an English professor who has dogeared copies of Marquis de Sade, Henry Miller, and DH Lawrence laying about with the dirty parts highlighted.

The dubbing in the first part doesn't quite match up, but eventually it catches itself. The handclapping on the side of the building is charming, n'est ce pas?

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Imaginary Scoop Jarvis Cocker

Jarvis Cocker news: I am calling in sick with swine flu to spend all next week in front of my computer

OH. MY. GOD.

As if anyone needs a reason to be in Paris in the spring time, I have another tall, angular, awe-inspiring one (hint: NOT the Eiffel Tower). Jarvis Cocker, he of Pulp, Relaxed Muscle and solo glory will be rehearsing in an art gallery in Paris May 5-May 10 for several upcoming performances. Fans will be given the unparalleled opportunity to view rehearsals, jam with the band (!!!), do yoga and pilates, and even bring their children to do musically-themed activities with them. I would STEAL a child to do that! Children of France, you have been warned.

Alas, reality, being the ugly beast that it is and my pocketbook being woefully bereft of cash as it is, I am relegated to watching it all here. C'est la vie, non?

Check out this mother expletivin' schedule (pronounced schezule)

TUESDAY 5th MAY
12 – 2pm – BAND REHEARSAL
2 -3pm – BRING AN INSTRUMENT (members of the public are invited to bring an instrument with them & play along with the band. Amplification will be available for electric instruments).
3 – 4pm – YOGA CLASS (with a qualified instructor. The band will provide suitable live accompaniment. Participants must provide their own yoga-mat.).
4 – 5pm – IMPROVISATIONS ON A THEME (throughout the course of the exhibition a box will be available in the gallery into which members of the public can post titles, phrases, suggestions, lyrics or anything else that the band can then base improvisations around. During this hour the band will create a number of pieces based on selections of this material).
5 – 6pm – GUEST PERFORMANCE ( an invited guest will play with the band)

WEDNESDAY 6th MAY
12 -2pm – BAND REHEARSAL
2 – 4pm – CHILDREN’S DAY ( French children traditionally have Wednesday off school. The band will supervise a number of music-based children’s activities over the course of these 2 hours. Parental supervision is required for children under 11).
4 – 5pm – RELAXATION ( the band will provide musical accompaniment to a relaxation class. Participants should provide their own exercise mat).
5 – 6pm GUEST PERFORMANCE ( see Tuesday 5th May)

THURSDAY 7th MAY
12 – 2pm – BAND REHEARSAL
2 – 3pm – IMPROVISATIONS ON A THEME ( see Tuesday 5th May)
3 – 4pm – PILATES CLASS (with a qualified instructor. The band will provide suitable live accompaniment. Participants must provide their own exercise mat)
4 – 5pm – BRING AN INSTRUMENT (see Tuesday 5th May)
5 – 6pm – GUEST PERFORMANCE

FRIDAY 8th MAY
12 – 2pm – BAND REHEARSAL
2 – 3pm – IMPROVISATIONS ON A THEME
3 – 4pm – AEROBICS CLASS
4 – 5pm – BRING AN INSTRUMENT
5 – 6pm – GUEST PERFORMANCE

SATURDAY 9th MAY
12 – 2pm – BAND REHEARSAL
2- 3pm – BRING AN INSTRUMENT
3 – 4pm – DANCING ( the band will play an hour of music designed to encourage people to dance. Dress appropriately)
4 – 6pm – SET-UP FOR OUTDOOR PERFORMANCE (weather permitting)
6 – 7pm – OUTDOOR PERFORMANCE ( the band will play a short open-air concert just outside the gallery)

SUNDAY 10th MAY
12 – 2pm – BAND REHEARSAL
2 – 3pm – QUIET HOUR ( an hour of the softest music the band can play)
3 – 4pm – GUEST PERFORMANCE
4 – 6pm – REVIEW OF THE WEEK ( the band will play music written over the course of the past 6 days)

Categories
Imaginary Scoop Jarvis Cocker

New Jarvis MP3, what do you think?

Jarvis photo by Michael Clements

I love me some Jarvis Cocker. The tall cool one can really do no wrong in my eyes. Remember when he covered "Purple Haze" last time he played the Showbox in 2007? It was a bold bet that turned out pretty stunning. 

Jarvis Cocker just announced details of the release of "Angela" a track taken from his forthcoming second solo album on Rough Trade, Further Complications and you can hear it right now here or download from his website. The album will be released on May 19, 2009 and US tour dates are being confirmed.

Word is that it will also be available in the UK on a "highly limited-edition" compilation cassette of various artists to coincide with Record Store Day on April 18th and as a limited edition 7” on June 15th featuring the exclusive b-side "I Found Myself Looking For God".

What do you think of the new song? It's still growing on me… it's a bit rougher than tracks on his first album, but I have a hard time questioning the Jarvis.

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Imaginary Scoop Jarvis Cocker The Bowery

Hey New Yorkers, tell Jarvis I said HI!

Jarvis Cocker by Michael Clements

Imaginary New Yorkers unite and get thee to the Bowery Ballroom tomorrow, Wednesday April 30th by 3p (actually, if it were me, I'd get there by 1.30p or 2p to get a good seat)!

It's just been announced that our favorite silky suave Brit-pop icon, Jarvis Cocker, will be making an appearance at the Bowery for a Q&A session. He'll be joined by OXFAM US representatives and the press release promises that he'll take "questions on everything" — which I'm sure includes music and OXFAM efforts, but I hope extends to one or two questions about love advice and style secrets. You can submit your question now!

After the Q&A, there will be a showing of the full concert from the last time he visited NYC. The event was put together by The Virtual Lower East Side (vLES.com) and more info is available on their website.

What would you like to ask him?  

Categories
BOAT Bright Eyes Eux Autres Fishboy Fred Astereo Imaginary Scoop Jarvis Cocker Los Campesinos! Okkervil River The Eames Era The Femurs The Fratellis The White Stripes Tullycraft we Your Favorite Book

Best of 2007: imaginary Liz's picks

Los Campesinos!Narrowing down my favorites for this year was HARD! I’m sure I’ll find even more 2007 releases I adore in 2008… but here’s what has been in obsessively high rotation this year.

Note: I still battle with how I can rank EPs versus full albums, or collections of previously unreleased material… but using my current logrhythm, here’s what it came out to today…

  1. Los Campesinos! Sticking Fingers Into Sockets (Arts & Crafts)
  2. Fishboy Albatross: How We Failed to Save the Lone Star State with the Power of Rock and Roll (Happy Happy Birthday To Me)
  3. Tullycraft Every Scene Needs A Center (Magic Marker)
  4. Eames Era Heroes and Sheroes (Self-Released)
  5. Bright Eyes Cassadaga (Saddle Creek)
  6. BOAT Let’s Drag Our Feet! (Magic Marker)
  7. The White Stripes Icky Thump (Warner Brothers)
  8. Jarvis Cocker Jarvis (Rough Trade)
  9. Okkervil River The Stage Names (Jagjaguar)
  10. Math & Physics Club Baby I’m Yours (Matinee)
  11. Fred Astereo Don’t Break My Heart (Lost & Lonesome)
  12. Eux Autres Cold City Happy (Happy Birthday To Me)
  13. The Femurs Modern Mexico (HomeSpun)
  14. The Fratellis Costello Music (Cherry Tree)
  15. Your Favorite Book Scotch Hog (Self-Released)
  16. Urban Legends Of Old Lost Days (Contraphonic)
  17. Jens Lekman Night Falls Over Kortedala (Secretly Canadian)
  18. Throw Me The Statue Moonbeams (Baskerville Hill)
  19. Team Gina Gina Gina Revolution (Self-released)

This year I’ve got a bunch of New Year’s resolutions. One of them is to podcast more and make more mix cds. That’s what I love doing… so I should do it more often, right? To get started off right, I’ve compiled my 2007 mix cd of favorites into an iMix so I can point to some of the specific songs that have rocked my world over the last 12 months (not all my favorite songs were on iTunes which makes this an abbreviated version of the tangible mix cd I compiled). Download, sample and enjoy!

Categories
Amy Winehouse Arctic Monkeys CSS Gallows Imaginary Scoop Jarvis Cocker The Cribs The Gossip The Klaxons The White Stripes

Amy Winehouse is cooler than Beth Ditto? Where's Jarvis?!?

NME has posted their "Cool" findings for 2007 on their website and has opened the voting for the Readers' Top 10 on their website.

The NME editorial staff ranked cool-kids like so:

 1. Frank Carter, Gallows (new)
 2. Jamie Reynolds, Klaxon (last year 13)
 3. Lovefoxxx, CSS (last year 10)
 4. Ryan Jarman, The Cribs (re-entry)
 5. Lethal Bizzle (new)
 6. Alex Turner, Arctic Monkeys (last year 32)
 7. Kate Nash (new entry)
 8. Amy Winehouse (last year 50)
 9. Beth Ditto, Gossip (last year 1)
10. Keith Richards (last year 26)

 

I need Erik G to truly critique (and decipher) it for me, but I have to point out the oddness of making Beth Ditto #9 AFTER Amy… and after that Klaxon? And Keith Richards? Is that the token classic dude? I'm guessing that means last year David Bowie was on the list? 

Good to know at least the Readers' Top Ten shouts out to Jack White and Jarvis Cocker (who should be #1, always).

 

Categories
Imaginary Scoop Jarvis Cocker Pulp

Jarvis Cocker celebrates Halloween

Jarvis Cocker has gotten into the Halloween spirit and has posted a series of three podcasts on his MySpace page of him reading an intricate Halloween story.

Go listen! There's something calming and sweet about listening to him read the frightful tale.

Also of note, only 68 people have made it to the third part of the three part story-reading series. Let's be completists people!

Want something that's not scary, but quite delightful (like Halloween candy)? Watch this video for one of my favorite Jarvis songs, "Don't Let Him Waste Your Time."

Categories
Imaginary Scoop Jarvis Cocker John Peel Pulp

Celebrating John Peel Day

"John was a launchpad for a thousand careers, including mine. No one in any medium could match his influence as a supporter of new talent … without commercial interest or intent. Someone who attempted to please nobody but himself ended up forging one of the most profound links with his listeners in the history of broadcasting. He was an ordinary bloke with an extraordinary love for music. I and many others will never forget him."

Jarvis Cocker

John Peel Day
All year I've thought John Peel Day was going to be on October 12th (it was last year), but now I see that it was October 13th in 2005, and this year the BBC placed the 'oly day on October 11th.

I'm not sure if I condone moving around a holiday like that (isn't keeping track of Thanksgiving enough?), but I do love the thought of celebrating the memory of a man who touch so many lives with music, so I'll follow along with their willy nilly calendaring ways.

Anyway, here at imaginary headquarters, we're decked out with our mega headphones and favorite band tees to mark John Peel day.

I'm not sure how to further celebrate it other than giving thanks for all the great music discoveries you've been saved by in your lifetime. Or listening to your favorite underground mixtapes or possibly donating to your favorite public radio station (John Peel was never under the thumb of the commercial radio giant like most of the right of the dial stations eating up the airwaves nowadays).

Another idea is that we could delve into the archive of festivities of JP Day of years past on the BBC website. Shall we listen to full sets from The Fall or Super Furry Animals (posted on the BBC.com site). 

How will you mark the day?