Archive for the “other people” Category

The last couple of days have consisted of nothing but web design, and I am rather knackered.

To get me through this marathon bout of webigami, I have taken inspiration from several sources:-

1. Bandcamp, Soundcloud and the Portability of Music

This is a post by Steve Lawson, solo bass player extraordinaire. In it he talks about bandcamp and how a great a tool it is.

You upload your tunes in CD-quality audio format, and then they make all the different resolutions of file that people might want, and let you decide what to do with them, which ones to charge for, how to licence the music, and then redesign the page. The results are then embeddable, sharable and sellable. It’s brilliant. If you’re selling MP3s online, you need BandCamp. Simple As.

He’s right, it’s great, and so I have been uploading Comrade Robot music to it and I’m pretty impressed so far.

Here is some of Mr Lawson’s music:

2. Ben Walker’s Website

I interviewed Ben for my songwriting website a while ago, and I’ve been consistently impressed with how well he does the internet. He knows all about how twitter should work, and his site is attractive and easy to use. I also think his songs are great, and really funny.

Here’s his latest album, which claims not to be one.

3. Matt Stevens’ Echo

Another indie musician who does the internet well, and who makes great music. Matt clearly listens to a lot fo the same guitarists as me. In particular I can hear a lot of Robert Fripp in his playing, which can only be a good thing. Listening to his stuff has also given me a hankering to go and buy a looping pedal at some point…

Here’s some music:



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A recent discovery I have made is the lovely Martin Auswick, who by pure coincidence also lives in Crystal Palace and goes by the name of ‘The Sound of the Ladies’. Despite the name, his is neither a lady, nor more than one person. However, wonderfully he is a Quantum Physicist

I started paying attention properly to his stuff when I stumbled across a songwriting related post on his blog and made a few comments.

From there I downloaded the free and lovely live EP ‘Live in Gipsy Hill’, mostly because Gipsy Hill is just down the road from me. I have since had it playing on a loop, and absolutely love both ‘The Clouds at the Top of the Sky’, and ‘Up! Went my Dreams’.

You should download this too.

If I were a music journalist I’d come up with some metaphors and similes to describe his music in a vague and ultimately useless way. But I’m not, so I shall instead say that he’s very good.  He has a great tenor/baritone voice, strums a telecaster and sings songs that, like ours, are about more interesting things than how terrible it is to lose your girlfriend.

Here’s a video:

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I’m sorry, I couldn’t help myself.

I  regularly listen to the Bugle podcast, and last week John Oliver sang a version of ‘Holding out for a Hero’, albeit with lyrics changed to reflect Bill Clinton’s recent exploits in North Korea.

It seemed a reasonable use of my time, having nothing to do but await the inevitable and firey doom that will surely soon come to us all, to add a backing to Mr Oliver’s vocal rendition.

You see, I love Jim Steinman. I love his songs beyond reason.

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A post or two ago, I mentioned the animated film I’d composed and recorded some music for.

It was created by my brother, who can be found here.

Here is the film. Warning, it contains extreme puppet violence.

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Hello you!

Just over a week ago, Pete and I played a gig at our old haunt The White Hart, in Whitechapel, London.

We played well, to an intimate but lovely crowd. I thought things sounded great, Pete complained about the sound afterwards.

We handed round a mailing list sign-up sheet, as we usually do, this time asking for emails and ‘your favourite time machine’. Responses included a delorean with a flux capacitor, the phone booth from the Bill and Ted films, an obscene suggestion that I won’t repeat publically, and two answers that would only make sense if the writer were caught in a time loop.

We got to hear the wonderful Chris Magerl, who is by far one of the best singer-songwriters we’ve seen on our travels through the London acoustic circuit. Here’s a video:

Also on the bill was Paul O’Kane, a very talented fingerstyle guitarist with a great sense of melody. His music reminded me of James Taylor, if James Taylor had more blues in his soul.

In other news

I’ve mixed a version of Vapour Trails, which can be heard if you log in to the Fans’ Area.

You’ll need to sign up to the mailing list to be able to do that.

And finally

Our next London gig is:

Thursday August 20th
The Fiddler’s Elbow
1 Malden Road
London NW5 3HS

Here’s a Map

Nearest tube Chalk Farm Road

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A few days ago we were among the ‘Daily Downloads’ on the site ‘Large Hearted Boy’.

Large Hearted Boy is a  music, literature and pop culture blog that I would heartily recommend. Go on, have a click, you know you want to.

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I’m currently enjoying a live streaming gig by looping guitar player ‘Matt Stevens’. His music is a mixture of Sigur Ros and Robert Fripp and I’m enjoying it lots!

If you’re reading this Sunday afternoon, have a click here and catch what’s left of the gig.

If not, here’s some of his stuff:


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A couple of years ago Pete and I played a gig in Camden with a gentleman who plays under the moniker ‘Trouble over Tokyo’. We bumped into him again the following January at another gig. He has since gone on to bigger and better things, and has recorded some very good songs indeed.

Trouble Over Tokyo are an interesting mix of singer-songwriter acousticness, Radiohead electronica and r’n'b inspired vocal harmonies. The arrangements rely on loops on multi-layered harmonies, which add a depth that those solo live performances didn’t have. I understand TOT perform as a full band these days, something I shall endeadvour to see when they’re next in London.

Here’s another video:

Here’s a Myspace page.

Here’s a proper website.

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