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Live Review: Little Roy with Prince Fatty and Hollie Cook at London 100 Club – 25th August 2011

By on Wednesday, 31st August 2011 at 2:00 pm

Despite the 100 Club’s punk rock heritage, tonight is a much more chilled affair. The reggae vibes coming through the PA system is soaked up by the slowly entering crowd. Headlining tonight’s show is the hottest name in reggae right now – Little Roy. Having had previous success throughout the 80s and 90s, Little Roy has managed to capture today’s young music fans with his fantastic Nirvana covers album, ‘Battle for Seattle’. This is his first performance of the Nirvana covers in the UK and the excitement can be heard buzzing around the room.

Before Little Roy takes to the stage, though, it is up to Prince Fatty to heat up the crowd. Almost as soon as Prince Fatty presses play the feet are moving and bodies swaying as London is given a true taste of Jamaica. With a whole host of MCs joining him on stage including Horseman, the stand-out performance comes from Hollie Cook, daughter of former Sex Pistols drummer Paul Cook. Her soulful and rhythmic voice soars over the crowd and keeps the dancehall moving. As the Prince Prince Fatty Soundsystem gradually comes to a close, much to the dismay of the 100 Club, it’s time for the headliner of the third Converse curated free shows (recall the earlier Everything Everything gig I attended, review here) at the celebrated London venue – Little Roy.

A merger of reggae and grunge might not have been a conventional decision, but the outcome is outstanding. The coarseness and emotion of Kurt Cobain’s voice isn’t lost through Little Roy’s rendition, as he plays a selection of tracks from his upcoming ‘Battle for Seattle’ album. The new LP from Little Roy of 10 Nirvana covers and there’s no ‘Smells Like Teen Spirit’ – hoorah! Originally angsty harder songs from Nirvana’s repertoire are suddenly much calmer and skanktastic thanks to the seven artists onstage contributing to this innovative sound.

The recent singles from the album ‘Sliver’ and ‘Come as You Are’ receive the best reception, as the 100+ people in this intimate setting sing and dance along to a song written by a hero and now sung by a dedicated fan and musician. The originally haunting ‘Polly’ is oddly brought to life and the meaning almost changed as Little Roy smiles incessantly as he sings “Polly wants a cracker…”. As the last notes ring out and the band leave the stage, the infectious rhythms of Little Roy and co. coupled with Cobain’s lyrics stick in the minds of the audience for the rest of the night. Whatever your opinion on Little Roy’s effort at a Nirvana covers album, he’s keeping the infamous status of Nirvana alive.


MTV’s Greatest Album Ever: Results

By on Thursday, 9th April 2009 at 1:10 am

MTV Greatest album (side)We introduced a few weeks ago MTV’s hunt to find “The Greatest Album Ever“. It raised a fair few questions, and a lot of angry responses from you guys as you listed your favourite bands who weren’t included.

Rather unsurprisingly, Michael Jackson topped the poll, having announced his sensational run of London shows between the announcement of the show and the results. Almost one in three of all votes went to the crazy American. In a shock move, Craig David was number 2 in the poll, and has been deemed more popular than Radiohead and Nirvana, receiving more votes than the Oxford based quintet and Seattle grungers combined. Surely that’s got to be some kind of mistake?

Over forty thousand votes were cast, which gives a pretty good perspective of what people think. Many in the comments of the previous post asked about some pretty seminal albums, however it should be noted that these are the best albums since 1981 – when MTV began, so many classics (Pink Floyd, Smiths, Who etc) aren’t eligible for the list. However, as Thom so rightly commented…. no Libertines? Crazy, no?

Speaking of wacko Jacko’s win, Trevor Nelson commented

I don’t think there’ll ever be another album like it ever in the history of music. There will never be a marriage of producer and artist and song writing and pop sensibility – it just won’t happen again. And also, due to the way people buy records now, there’ll never be an album that sells as many copies – and that’s the thing that will keep it at number one.

Interestingly, Zane Lowe didn’t agree with Craig David’s high ranking, commenting

The guy was hugely successful and there’s no denying that album is a great listen from start to finish as a pop record. It probably stands up as the greatest British urban pop record of the last twenty years. Still no one’s really topped it – apart from Winehouse. Should it be number two in The Greatest Album of all time? No, in my opinion, but I’m not going to begrudge anyone’s success, and if his fans voted for it then what’s encouraging for me is that they still consider that record to be an important part of their lives and that’s what music is.

After the jump: the complete list of albums
Continue reading MTV’s Greatest Album Ever: Results


MTV’s Greatest Album Ever

By on Thursday, 26th February 2009 at 3:42 pm

MTV Greatest album (side)It seems every awards season we have another “Greatest album” survey, most of them from one random source who have basically surveyed their friends to see what they like best that day.

However, when MTV do a survey you know it’s going to be the right choice. They’ve just launched their hunt to find the “Greatest Album Ever“, after they crowned Duran Duran’s Rio as having the “Greatest Video Ever” last year.

In conjunction with music industry experts, MTV’s flagship music channels VH1, MTV Two and MTV Base have each collated their top ten greatest albums since 1981, the year MTV launched. The debates to select the albums were chaired by channel presenters Edith Bowman (VH1), Zane Lowe (MTV Two) and Trevor Nelson (MTV Base).

Suggs (of Madness fame) was one of the key contributors to the shows, talking about Amy Winehouse’s decline and then subsequent rejuvenation:

It’s great to see her looking marvellous again. There was quite a gap between her first and second album and I used to see her around Camden a lot, and when you see someone regularly its harder to notice their demise. I’m so glad she looks well again. It was fate putting her together with Mark Ronson for Back to Black, and was so good for her putting her voice right in the middle of it.

Meanwhile, as only MTV can, Pete Burns gave us an, erm, “intriguing” insight into his friendship with Morrissey, who failed to make the top 10 for any of his solo albums, but whose Smith’s classic “The Queen is Dead” appeared in both VH1 and MTV 2’s top 10’s:

I knew him personally back in the day, he gave me a copy of this album. I loved it from track one. He has a very unique sense of irony and humour. As a person he’s very difficult and awkward to get on with. He stopped talking to me over a fur coat, and still to this day he holds a grudge about it!

Personally, I’d love to see REM get the award. All the others are great, but people seem to underestimate the consistency of REM. Plus, Michael Stipe is a legend in my eyes. Either that or Human League, but I can’t see them beating the big boys – can you?

Voting for the top album is now open over on MTV’s website. Each channel’s review of the top 10 albums can be seen this weekend, with Trevor Nelson presenting the MTV Base run down Saturday 28 February at 9pm, followed by Edith Bowman presenting VH1 and Zane Lowe MTV Two both on Sunday 1 March at 9pm. The final winner will be announced on Sunday 12th April.

After the jump, check out the top 10 albums chosen by each channel.
Continue reading MTV’s Greatest Album Ever


Video of the Day #5: Polyphonic Spree – Lithium (Nirvana Cover)

By on Tuesday, 17th February 2009 at 6:00 pm

This could well be a controversial choice in the video department. The Polyphonic Spree (remember, those 20-odd crazy Americans who are a bit too happy?) have just released a video to accompny their cover of Nirvana’s Lithium. To some, this will be sacrilege, to others, genius.

It’s not exactly a new cover – they performed it when we caught them in 2007, however the video is new, and provides a great talking point.

Either way, watch and leave your comments and thoughts about it below.



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