Tag Archives: pop

Birthday Celebrations!!

So with the technology failures of recent times, I have been unable to really get in and update the ole’ HG site. Which yeah I could have worked harder at doing, but enough of my shortcomings!!

Its Hellagood’s Birthday – the blog is One Year Old!! Hurrah and we’ve had over 3 and a half thousand hits. Quite exciting.



Thanks to everyone who’s been checking on here regularly and those who’ve just hit up once to look at what they thought was porn, you’ve made this blog great. I do wish I’d been a bit more attentive to the Blog lately but life gets in the way of writing sometimes. Well when you’re writing for free it does, you give me a deadline and paycheck and I am there!

So to commemorate the birthday edition, and in honour of my two fans (I definitely have two, you have identified yourselves!) some fantastic written stuff!!

Also I do have to say, I managed to lock myself out of twitter like the eponymous twit, so its not been updated in ages.

First up I found myself watching the pop chanels in the middle of the night, like I do, and Shakira came on (no pun intended) and I found myself thinking, ‘Shakira, didn’t she used to be a singer?’ Many have made that leap from music to acting but props to someone who’s not afraid to turn their back on the cynical world of hollywood and look for something alternative, it takes a lot of guts to approach the oldest form of progressive adult focused erotic art in the world, porn. Oh wait, sorry, I’ve just been informed, she is still a singer, apparently.

Covers – we all know them and love them, but I see recently the Mighty Boosh team are being covered all over the boutique. I noticed Lady GaGa has covered Old Gregg’s Love Games you can see them both here. I really feel she should have gone for more funk.

Also Little Boots, 4music favourite and newest excuse to pretend there’s been a genre shift when actually NOTHING has happened in the pop world and there has been no great forward movement, change, revelation or actual cerebral activity, seems to be just doing ‘Future Sailors’ from the crimping episode, expect without entertaining anyone.

Which brings us to Girls Can’t Catch. Now I loved Smack the Pony (pun intended) but if you’ve ever seen League of their Own (the American Baseball loving woman’s own Field Of Dreams) its blatantly a lie. I refer you to Dorothy Kamenshek.

Also its tedious umani-less time wasting no talent ass clownery. Pop music goes through phases of being life saving. It can be catchy, life-affirming, romantic, hopeful, foolish, clever and simple. And at other times its the equivalent of jangling some keys in front of a baby to keep it amused for a couple minutes. But replace keys with neon shite and replace baby with grown adult and couple of minutes with 7 hours of TMF, 4 music, Jamster adverts, all E4 idents, etc….

I despair, I digress… There is music out that I like, but as I get older and my soul gets more discerning, its just so much easier to think of things I don’t like.

Oh, here’s something I like – Akala. There’s an overachiever if ever I saw one. Some people just excel at things, at life in general, they are always working. Akala seems to be one of those people. Known also as Black Shakespeare, the younger brother of Ms Dynamite was a young football superstar and restaurateur before he even made his first record. This summer he’s been working with young artists on the BBC Blast project. His work is refreshingly real and has a fresh raw sound to it, not too overproduced or cliched, not falling back on beat machine fail-safes or stereotypical background music. Rather the tracks are a composite of sounds that reflect the feeling of the lyrics themselves. Currently busy finishing his new album, look out for it this year or take an audio tour of It’s Not A Rumour and follow up Freedom Lasso. I do love homegrown talent and wiki says he’s part Scottish so MON!!


a quick hello

Hey kids, sorry I’ve not been updating you with all the latest but have been incapacitated in recent times. I will update soon and bring you all the news from Glasgow’s recent Mela Festival and Pin Ups Festival. I will also be talking about some bands and general music stuff – its time to get back to the Glasgow Band Reviews! So lots of stuff coming up. Keep checking the page 😉

I don’t have a lot to say about Jackson, I’ll leave that to the professional pop quidnuncs.


Affectations, today’s subject of interest. When I’m out and about on the club scene I have noticed to my horror and distaste (perhaps I am too provincial) kids wearing fake glasses. Like its part of their look, like poor eye sight is an accessory, as though myopia portrays some sense of aesthetic cultural relevance. There is no glass in these glasses, only frames. Should I move ahead of the trend and begin to use crutches out on the tiles even though I have no actual walking deficiency, it just suits my intended display of stylish eccentricity?

I never forget a face, but in your case I'll make an exception


The real cool thing is when you turn a flaw into an aspect of your own coolness. Beloved British soul popster of the 90’s Gabrielle wore an eye patch to deal with her ptosis, and instead of looking like a pirate she managed to cultivate a whole new look for herself, she owned that eye patch making an iconic reference point. Nowadays we see Rhianna wearing her own bejeweled patched trying to achieve the look.  Although the chat at that point was that it was to cover possible domestic abuse. NOT COOL, NOT EVER.

Back from the fashion topics, to the real important stuff. Music.

I’m loving the new Brody Dalle project Spinnerette. Its lighter than the Distillers stuff, with more interesting arrangements and use of vocals. The Adam Freeland remix is as remixes go, pretty average but getting good coverage. E.P. Ghetto Love seems very promising for some new rock and roll stuff, which is a scene, at least over here that has gone cold. Perhaps its the lack of deserts. I grow so weary of music with no discernible tune or no clear emotion. Just general noise and ‘some kind of perhaps strong feelings maybe, I dunno, something about a girl, and I’m too controlled by society to do anything, meeaaaaggggreuuugggllleee, something’, either that or descendants of Billy Ray Cyrus telling me to shake things. I don’t think rock is dead, I think maybe its hungover from the 90’s and we’ll see it again once it stops throwing up into the washing up bowl and eating stale kebabs.

Spinnerette are playing King Tut’s on July 18th.

Pop music remains pretty strong here in the UK, as always, though this glittery perfect pop world is beset by demons on all sides. Girls Aloud have to have extra ninja training on Mondays and Wednesdays to beat them down.

You’ve got to be kidding me

Asher Roth, this is a wind up right? Nothing that sucks that much could be accepted by the general public, surely?

The man’s an arse. Has no-one else noticed?  He seems to be appealing to a weird white middle class american college setting thats drunk of its own ass while cruising down the freeway with its hat real low thinking ‘I’m fly’. Ha! We are the future senators and realtors of the Nation, you’re all screwed!  Have you actually listened to it? Its dreadful. Empty, lazy, shallow and self-serving. On his myspace there is various comments from rap/pop/hiphop superstars, which could be taken in a variety of contexts but most praise him as an artist or ask him for beer and condoms. Seriously? Does he carry them around to make friends?

His voice sounds pretty whiny, now I’m not a big Akon fan either, and thats a pretty whiny voice too so I realise there is a market for this kind of thing. Eminem reaches new heights of claws across the chalkboard vocal stylings but y’know what Eminem has that Asher doesn’t? TALENT. He can actually RAP. A tiny pre-requisite for people who are RAPPERS as a trade. Its not that you can’t be suburban and love hiphop as I’m sure he does, its not that you have to live a stereotypical life in the ghetto, influenced by guns, drugs and struggling to love hip hop or make a musical career. You do however have to have SOMETHING to write about. Most artists are driven to become artists because they can’t do anything else, they have a deep desire to communicate and create. They talk about their own struggles, politics, love, death any number of impassioned topics. Pizza, beer, tokin’? Yeah, do those things don’t make an album about it, nobody cares!!! Except for a tiny window of time people shallow enough to go ‘heh heh thats like us heh, heh’, and then forget about it forever once they get over themselves and grow up.

Goldie Lookin’ Chain make records about smoking, drinking, going down the shops thinking your a robot and an adolescence spent in the local roller disco, but these songs are good, funny, insightful and irreverent. Looking for a white MC to compare Roth to? The boys from Newport not only have a lot more flair and self aware tongue in cheek attitude, but would be a lot more entertaining to spend a day in Alton Towers with.

If you’re going to be an entertainer, do your damn job, ENTERTAIN. There’s enough below par crap in my life, the music industry is supposed to be legendarily hard to get into, ensuring some level of quality on output. LIES.

And so it goes… The guy bugs me. That college track in particular represents something ugly and squalid to my mind, remember when going to university was about furthering your education, not just training for specific job even, but broadening your horizons, opening your mind to a wider world of topics, in order that you could benefit society by making good decisions as an adult. Nowadays you need a degree to work in any number of minimum wage office and shop jobs and the time spent studying is just time spent drinking your way through decisions you will regret for the rest of your life, but probably won’t actually remember.

I’m not saying you shouldn’t have a good time, I had a good time, but just, for the love of God, listen to better music!

Grinds my gears like a like a giantly overblown undertalented cog.

lets hit it!

Hello kids, and now for todays music news and interest HIT!

Mega industry magazine Music Week have released a new jobs website – http://www.musicweek4jobs.com/ where you can find all the best music based accounting jobs and occasionally even more exciting jobs.

Todays thoughts – music and personality, can you dig it?

Last autumn the BBC released an article on a study about musical tastes and characteristics by Herriot-Watt University.  Apparently the biggest study ever conducted but I reckon various musos and DJs have been studying this on an even bigger scale for the whole of their lives, with everyone they’ve ever met, though those kind of findings are perhaps a little less scientific and quantifiable.

Stereotyping is a powerful thing, back in the day when I worked at a certain big chain record store, our boss asked us to do a workshop day of staff training, part of this involved drawing our ‘typical customer’ on a big poster sheet of paper. We split into groups of two and went to work. Almost everyone there drew the exact same picture, the ‘Indie-boy’ with his long fringe, record bag covered in badges, army cap, blazer, tight roll up jeans, converse trainers… You probably know this character very well, in fact he’s probably your buddy, Stu or Davey or Drew or some such name, a fashionable young male, oh NME you have so much to answer for…

the 'trendy' libertines

the 'trendy' libertines

My group drew a variety of people all over the page, there was ‘blues guy’, ‘world folk girl’, ‘indie boy (naturally)’, ‘metal girl’, ‘hiphop guy’, ‘dance guy’ – you get the picture. Our boss then informed us that in fact our most common customer is the 35-65 year old female who has no particular interest in collecting albums from a specific genre of music. We were taken aback, although of course it made sense, they were in buying presents mainly, or picking things up for family members, dvds, games and merchandise . Of course our fictional customers do have a few real life counter parts – we’d met and sold records to them but we’d been so sure of our musical types and that of course music was the most important thing that we hadn’t even thought to consider what we actually sold most of day to day, which was movies. Dvds are the primary sales item for all big chain media entertainment shops like HMV, defunct Zavvi and Fopp etc. To be fair we were a bit of a snobby muso crowd at the time.

Music and fashion have long gone hand in hand but the interesting thing is how we match people up by looks and style to a type of music and then to a type of personality. Often people dress in way that reflects their musical tastes and is part of their shared culture of musical tastes and experiences partly as method of self expression and sometimes in order to make an empathic statement to the world in order to attract other people with similar interests which will communicate a kind of interest and hobby related understanding between the two. If you’ve ever made a new friend in the record aisles or at a concert then maybe you’ve experienced this.


The idea of ‘looks’ for music genres is not a new one, its well trodden ground exploited and enjoyed on a massive scale by the fashion industry and every new generation of teens who discover their own sound.

Music taste and personality is a new area of study for academics. I have personally been told on more than one occasion that I didn’t seem like the kind of person who would love blues (though I do) but would be expected to be a big indie fan. Is that due to my social class position, my ethnicity, my personality, my age, my personality, my dress sense, my job, my friends? Probably all of the above, because of our well worn expectations.

How does a blues fan act? Are they happy or sad? Are metal fans aggressive or mathematical? Are soul lovers good lovers? Well we probably won’t get answers to all of those yet…


The findings of the study could offer some surprises, or perhaps you’ve known all along …

Sourced here from the BBC article the types of music and their associated temperaments

blues = high self-esteem, creative, outgoing, gentle and at ease

jazz =  high self-esteem, creative, outgoing, gentle and at ease

classical = high self-esteem, creative, introverted

rap = high self-esteem, outgoing

opera = high self-esteem, gentle, creative

country and western = hardworking, outgoing

reggae = high self-esteem, not hardworking, creative, outgoing, gentle, at ease

dance = high self-esteem, not gentle

indie = low self-esteem, creative, not hardworking, not gentle

bollywood = creative, outgoing

rock/heavy metal = low self-esteem, creative, not hardworking, gentle, introverted, at ease

chart pop = high self-esteem, not creative, hardworking, outgoing, gentle, not at ease

soul = high self-esteem, outgoing, creative, at ease

Do you see your see yourself there? At this stage in the study things are pretty general, but this is a very large study based on a mass survey of a few key points. We’re still waiting on the official results of the study to come in later this year. Other smaller studies and theories have been put forward but often they don’t want offend anyone so all the characteristics are positive and the giant gleaming problem with that is expressed extremely succinctly by this article, indeed do no sucky people listen to music? My experience have been HUGELY different, there are alot of bad seeds out there listening to the bad seeds.

Nowadays its all about the sub genre, taking one already part removed genre like ’emo’ and created new super-upset-underachieving- macramé-enthusiasts-emo-core and the like. You’re getting down to preferred shades of black for a rainbow of tears. Sometimes we can all get a little too hung up on the genre naming I think.

Its an interesting area of study, but I think the findings are going to have to change with the times, music is always evolving and changing as are people. I reckon also this is an odd period in history when suddenly we have access to any and all kinds of music (providing you’ve got a home, and a home computer, if you’re reading this then its likely you do) at the click of a button. In previous years, you had to work a bit harder to track down the beats of your heart and head 😉