The big day has arrived! Off we go to Chicago...the first time two thirds of us have ever been to America and all to experience musical adventures currently unknown....
Now having more or less packed (if throwing some pants and tshirts into a suitcase count), it is time for the most important part of travelling - what reading accompaniments deserve to make the journey from the dusty bookshelf in your room across oceans to lands new?
I've realised that in the last year or so due to severe lack of funds, I haven't bought that many books. Most I have acquired from my school and university days and some have come by means of presents. Books and records are my most favourite presents to give and receive!
I've just been towering over my much neglected bookcase trying to find something that will hold my interest for more than 5 minutes and hopefully will also be quite appropriate for the journey ahead.
Immediately I spot Jack Kerouac's On The Road which was a present from my sister after she first visited the States. Yep, couldn't be a more damn obvious choice but I am yet to read it so it will do nicely. Next to that I see City Lights Poets Anthology - sticking with the American theme, in the suitcase it goes.
Finally as I was turning away from the bookcase and preparing myself to jump over the drum kit in the corner of my room back to where there is actually a bit of space on the floor, I spot a coverless ancient book and have no idea what it could be. It is in fact JG Ballard's Concrete Island. I haven't a clue how it arrived in my bookcase. It is coverless and has no identification marks except the following number scrawled on the back: 07780 611631.
Dare I ring it? Perhaps after I have read the book as I am so keen to dig into it!
Farewell London! I feel so drained of people and this town...I have been dreaming of this in all my past lives...
PS I remember one of the first blogs I ever wrote was The Birds Book Club blog on our Myspace which had great input and feedback from you all! Feel free to suggest any good books you are currently reading as I am always interested. Thanks!
Today I've been thinking about matters of the heart again. I'm wondering, where did all the love go? Not in the boring, idealised sense of romance, no sir. But where did all the stormy, trashy, turbulent, sexually-charged dalliances of yesteryears rock stars go? We need to bring this back!!
I'm not condoning or condemning any set lifestyle at all. I am merely thinking aloud - curious as to where misspent youth and energy are spending their time. Perhaps it's because we are too tame these days or the fact that people seem to be more and more introverted and more and more insulated. Boring! I have my firm few intellectual friends that I love and care for so much but sometimes I feel totally out on a limb with my views on other stuff. More than anything, I have constant battles with myself as to what is 'correct' behaviour. I may say one thing and do the complete opposite. I tend to do this a lot and it's pretty frustrating. I suppose I'm a real hypocrite underneath it all.
At the end of the day, I suppose we all must calm down. I mean, look at Stephanie Seymour. She went from playing Axl Rose's bride in the November Rain video to marrying this in real life:
Yes, an overweight fiftysomething billionaire banker.
Today we went the short way down to Dalston, to the Pix HQs to be exact, for an interview with Princess Julia and Hanna Hanra. It was fun! Look out for it and something else very special very soon! Only in Pix of course!
We then stopped off for a yummy turkish meal (don't know what it was but there was potatoes, bread, olives etc) and then walked into a shop and saw.......!!!!!
I haven't written on here for a while, under the ethos that if you ain't got anything to say, it's better holding back than posting a blank page. So here I am talking about something that is making my mind's eye dribble slightly. At the moment my only company is facebook, bed and now blogger.com. We've just finished the last week of our tour and on my return i have spent the past couple of days under the duvet in the foetal position with facebook on the laptop arms or stumbles length away. Facebook quizzes are my new internet thing, fuck You Tube or online scrabble- these pointless quizzes are actually helping me tick away the time. Reading a good book or watching a film, whatever. For the past couple of days my mind is a zombie. I'm keeping it blank, I'm playing the 'dumb blond' until I decide I'm ready to play the 'intelligent brunette' or whatever. Through these facebook quizzes I can assess how gay i am (65%), what will happen on prom night (I will get arrested) and when I will have a baby (14 March 2014). Amazing. For next couple of days facebook is my social life. Don't call me, facebook me. You want my attention? Superpoke me instead and in return I'll send you a vodka cocktail via the applications section. Lets fbk chat and lol all night. Hey, you know what? I'll even 'like' your facebook status updates.
We'd planned on doing a fanzine for our tour but unfortunately, it never came to fruition.
I've posted some stuff below that was meant to go in it. As people took time out to submit stuff, it's a real shame for it to just lie on my laptop and not to share it with the world.
Also on other news, I have launched a new magazine and community blog today! It is called The Quiet Riots - named partly after the Bird song and partly after the inspirational, pacifist ways of Mahatma Gandhi. Basically a lot can be done just through exercising freedom of thought...you don't even have to leave your bed. I do most things from my bed - organising club nights, writing, promoting, playing bass - I think people who think lying in bed all day is lazy need to open their minds. For me, my bed is my office. All my wondrous thoughts, strange ideas and darkest despairs surface there.
Anyway, check it out and let me know if you want to contribute. I've been inundated with talented people getting in touch today about it. I'm so happy! It seems like it's touched a nerve. All those who I was hoping would get in touch have. It's all very exciting.
THE ZINE THAT NEVER WAS
I asked a few friends to submit their current Top 10 songs.
FARIS, THE HORRORS: 1. Del Shannon - Keep Searchin’ 2. Harry Nilsson - Everybody’s Talkin’ 3. Bobby Vee - The Night Has 1000 Eyes 4. Rosa Yemen - Larousse Baron Bic 5. A Number Of Names - SheriVari 6. David Bowie - In The Heat Of The Morning 7. Robert Ashley -Automatic Writing 8. King Sun - Coming Soon 9. The Alliance - Your Idol 10. The Sapphires - Where Is Your Heart
JON, THE RULING CLASS: 1. Sisters Of Mercy - Amphetamine Logic 2. Fields of Nephilim- Preacher Man 3. The Horrors- Mirrors Image 4.Pale Fountains - Unless 5.The Associates - Party Fears Two 6. Cocteau Twins - Cherry Coloured Funk 7. My Bloody Valentine - Strawberry Wine 8. The Telescopes - Perfect Needle 9. Spacemen 3 - Revolution 10. The Charlatans - 10 Ignition
SHAUN, V.E.G.A.S WHORES 1. SONIC YOUTH - Theresa's Sound World (Live USA) 2. BARBARA MORGENSTERN - Morbus Basedow 3. MY BLOODY VALENTINE - Realise 4. SUICIDE - Station 5. THE FALL - Dead Beat Descendant 6. VELVET UNDERGROUND- Venus In Furs 7. PAN SONIC - Machinist 8. THE BRIAN JONESTOWN MASSACRE - God Is my Girlfriend 9. APHEX TWIN - Quixote 10. ANDRE LOO - Introvert Dancer
JAMES, BRAVE EXHIBITIONS 1. "Ex-Yugoslavia" by Table Manners 2. "Next to Nothing" by Savage Republic 3. "Machismo" by Gene Loves Jezebel 4. "Les Anges d'Aujourd'hui" by Trop Tard 5. "Glory of the World" by Gloria Mundi 6. "Le Soleil S'est Noye" by Exces Nocturne 7. "Sex Hex" by Nurvuss 8. "Grossstadtalarm" by Plastikstrom 9. "Acid Burn" by White Car Pet 10. "Saturday Nite" by Central Unit
C-Bird's Top 5 Bonanza!
Top 5 Women who rock
I’ve include a colourful array of artists in my list who have inspired me in my quest of rock and roll enlightenment.
1, Tina Turner
Tina Turner will always be number one on my list. Her voice is like a hurricane ripping through your soul. She exudes so much energy and sexuality the woman stands alone.
2, Annie Sprinkle (Performance artist)
Annie Sprinkle has worked in every part of the sex industry. From prostitute to film producer she has done everything. Relaying her past in performance and through sex education she uses her experience in the sex industry to enlighten the curious. In her most famous performance piece called “My Public Cervix Announcement” she invited audiences to inspect her cervix with a speculum and a flashlight. She celebrates the female body with a no holes barred attitude that I find fascinating. We are in world where image is so important and at times it can be hard to feel comfortable in your own skin. This is why Annie Sprinkle is unique she breaks all barriers and carries on living.
3, Carol Morely (Film maker)
The Alcohol Years, chronicles Morley’s life throughout the years she spent as part of the Hacienda scene from 1982-1987. Writing an ad in a local Manchester paper she asked people to contact her if they knew her within those five blurry alcoholic years. The film is almost parallel to how most women feel when they become absorbed into a “scene”. The music, the party, the people you meet became part of your life and what starts out to be a harmless obsession becomes suffocating something that Morely later finds out.
4, Maya Deren (Film maker)
A voodoo High Priestess and a regarded founder of the American avant garde she once stated, “I make my pictures for what Hollywood spends on lipstick”. A firm opposition to the Hollywood mainstream her film “Meshes of the Afternoon” has not only influenced me in my video work but also through music aswell. Teiji Ito who composed the score was her husband and concocted a stream of minimal tribal drums that carry the film into a different dimension. It was orignally a silent film. A sureal coil of images reflecting the different sides of a woman. The film never fails to enchant and hypnotize.
5, N I C O
In a documentary I watched about Nico someone described her as a freak for being so beautiful. I wonder what it must be like to be recognised firstly for your appearance and then of your achievements. But her beauty was something quite mythical. Even as she aged and her looks began to fade the myth and legacy surrounding her never melted away. Her voice etched with melancholy a deep and monotone voice that evoked so much emotion. The songs she sang with the Velvet Underground are my favourite tracks. All Tomorrows Parties and Femme Fatale still hold my attention like the first time I heard them.
This week brings a close to our tour. It couldn't have ended on a greater high - Wrexham with Martin and our friends Ira and Kristina in tow was one of our best gigs ever!
Last night we played a great club called Twee Off which is at Norwich Arts Centre which is a huge church. There was a very cool crowd and we saw some amazing bands - Men and Fever Fever who both supported us. It was a really cool night.
Now we rehearse for about 10 days before we head off to record our album. Unfortunately we still can't give much away about it due to instructions from the greater powers that be which sucks a lot. However we're planning on it having 12 songs and it is being produced by one of my all-time heroes. It's so exciting I'm going to burst!
Anyway, it is Father's Day and I'm a bad daughter as I'm so exhausted I can't make the trip home...Here's some random photos I've found on my phone from the last few weeks.
Camilla Ghost School/Creep Club is the coolest girl around!
Favourite new pass time is milkshakes!
My best milkshake buddy wearing the scarf I knitted for him
http://facetattoo.me/ is bloody brilliant! Really makes me think that I'm not using my mind, body and creativity at their utmost capacity.
Zombie Boy is a particular fave. Must be because I'm a goth of course. He's actually quite good looking and takes time out to drink slush puppies in the sun. So he's sensitive underneath it all. Don't let the cold exterior fool you!
http://edwardcrutchley.blogspot.com/ is a great read. Ed is a really good friend of mine. In fact, he co-founded Decasia Club with me back in the day. Here's a bit of trivia for you - for a while Decasia was run by 4 of us including Andy Needle (who is now guitarist in The Ruling Class) and Ollie Evans who is a music video director and did Atlantis to Interzone for Klaxons amongst others. Haha, looking back we were quite the creative crew!
Off to Wrexham tomorrow with a certain Martin Selfish Cunt in tow...can't wait! Ross from Don't Die Just Yet always treats us so well and we've always had such good times there. Really looking forward to it! I must remember not to swear as it's a 14+ gig. The first problem is how am I going to introduce Martin on stage without saying the C word?!!!!
Jesus. RyanScare is an absolute disgrace. I don't understand why people think that if something has the word 'budget' or 'low cost' in it then it's alright to be treated like a piece of crap. I believe that any service provided, even a free service, should have a standard level of respect for its customers.
Ryan Air don't believe this. No sir. Their policy is: if we don't say anything, it never happened. So when you go up to a young Italian trolley dolly and demand to know why you boarded the plane 2 hours after it was meant to take off and hear the engines being switched on an hour and a half after you've been strapped into your chair and made to stare at orange tanned slick back pony tailed grumpy air stewards floundering their arms about with a demonstration life jacket on, you are met with this response.
Did you hear that?
That was a resolute nothing as a response.
Anyway, the only thing that cheered me up a semi tone was a call from a dear friend telling me that The Pixies concert was about to start in under an hour. Of course I was not even in the air let alone anywhere near east London. Ahhh. But it felt so good to know that my dearest friends were thinking of me and wishing me to be there.
Today I decided to stay in and spend some time by myself as it all kicks off again tomorrow - London gig, Rome, final tour dates and then locking ourselves away in the studio for a couple weeks. Then America and then my holiday in Amsterdam!! This is my last day off in a long while. I really enjoyed my evening.
I'd planned on attending 2 different gigs but there were people at both gigs I really didn't want to see. People from my past and people from my present....I felt the best option was to stay at home and get familiar with our new bass amps. I believe people are transitory - I don't keep a real, strong connection with them. I've lost the need to be sentimental and my stamina to preserve friendships is rapidly deteriorating. There are those special few that I have and those people will have my all. Over the years I've come to find that the more chances you give certain people, the more they will fuck up. It's better to bite the bullet after the first time and look forwards to new people and new horizons. This may seem like a ridiculous way of living but I have my reasons and many scars to prove it.
I have a real issue with people disrepecting each other. As much as people think I'm a scene queen and flutter about from one club to the next every night, this really isn't the case. Apart from gigs and DJing, I spend a lot of my time at home or at random pubs and places away from the thick of it so to speak. I keep myself to myself and especially out of gossip. It seems like everyone has something to say about everyone else and no doubt despite trying to shun myself away, news travels and I'm surprised when I hear what certain people allegedly get up to and particularly shocked when I hear supposed news about me.
Haha. You have to laugh. I'm not going to reel out the expected Oscar Wilde quote at this point but being talked about in any capacity besides our music irks me. Forgot to put that on my irk list from the other day....
Sometimes you can feel like a complete ghost in London and other times you feel so hounded and claustrophobic. I find it interesting that there are so many scenes and groups within the relatively small music scene of London. These factions are so easy to spot and everyone knows exactly which one they are in. The girls and I find this fascinating. We're friendly to everyone yet we remain an island to a large extent. Not really sure why. Perhaps we're a bit too weird or perhaps we are yet to find the right people we completely click with.
I love monkeys. I've always wanted one since I saw Michael Jackson with Bubbles back in the rocking 80s.
I was introduced to this Japanese show about a year ago. It is amazing, Pan Kun is a true legend who takes his best friend, bulldog James out on missions like doing fire training, cooking noodles and boarding a train.
Originally a stage play, 'Who's Afraid Of Virgina Woolf' caused a stir in the 50's due to the powerful themes it delved into- marriage, mental illness, family, career, children, alchoholism. These issues today are still very much top of the agenda but the way in which these themes were dealt with caused quite a sensation. The idea that the desire to have the perfect marriage, family, career, love (aspects of life that most will assume are just givens) can in fact strip away a person's self-esteem and uniqueness was something completely unheard of, blashpemous, impossible. But it's this desire for an 'ideal' that comsumes a person and can eventually destroy them. Failing to achieve these ideals renders you a social failure.
The film adaptation sees a dishevelled Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton verbally and sometimes physically battling it out for the duration of the film over marriage, love, children and promiscuity in the presence of a pair of new weds who on first glance represent the 50's ideal- young and ambitious. It sounds like 90 minutes of Jeremy Kyle but it's done in such an intelligent, impassioned way, the intensity can cut through you like a knife. For the duration of the film you're drawn into the characters' descent into a muddy drunk fuzz where reality and fantasy merge and bombshells are dropped left, right and centre. I was on the edge of my seat the whole time. As 'THE END' fades onto the screen it'll take you at least the whole night to get your breath back.
Martha and George are at it again...
I watched this film a couple of days ago and it is still stuck firmly in my mind. Films I have seen that I feel share this same level of intensity are, 'A Street Car Named Desire' and 'Replusion' both of which I watched for the first time a few years back. Once the closing credits roll on screen you are left in such a heady state as each film is such an emotional explosion! When we get back from tour I'll post up a few more of my must-see films and as ever, film recomendations are highly apprieciated!!!!!
We hit the road again tomorrow, next stop BRISTOL! It's absolutely outrageous the amount of crap I will attempt to fit into a bag big enough to fit an adult human body. I tell myself over and over, 'I need ALL OF THIS SHIT and the extra shoes', obviously this is a load crap seeing as I'll only wear one pair of shoes for the next couple of months until I get bored of them or until they fall apart - whichever happens first, usually the latter. Note to self: being Emelda Marcos and the woman who lived in a giant shoe- not good. But yes, packing is not my forte and I hate it. Oh what a life I live to actually worry about packing... It makes me feel dirty like a piece of shit.
I used to absolutely hate taking a handbag out with me and now I walk around with a mammoth sized atrocity carrying a lot of pointless objects for those 'just in case' moments. Maybe it's an 'age' thing. My sister who has a 2 year old son, leaves home with a smaller bag than I do and she carries a box of Pampers and an industrial sized tub of E45 Cream with her at all times.
What else do I need to do before tomorrow? ...
Ugh I abhor 'to do' lists, mainly because I can never complete them but I have this constant urge to write them then eventually write them off. They're usually penned before bedtime in some neurotic fevered way. Like a pre-bed head cleanse before I close my eyes for the day. I cleared out the draws by my desk the other day and found about 60 unticked, unfinished lists of importance. It's really quite questionable how important these, 'to dos' were seeing as a few of those lists were over a year old and were all practically unfinished. I noticed, 'find a job' was on one of the lists, underlined, circled and highlighted TO FUCK.
Ok so I don't actually need to pack all this shit do I?
Time to give up the menthols perhaps? I have to admit, as I type this I have a fag pinned inbetween my middle and forefinger. Yeah and I just coughed...
I have been talking to friends of mine who have recently given up the evil nicotine sticks- they keep telling me, 'honey, you won't quit until you REALLY want to!'. But I do, I seriously do......I kind of do....really......inhale, exhale, stress over.
At the moment due to major wallet malfunctions (i.e- zero money), I've had to smoke roll ups. There is something ritualistic about pulling out a rizla, neatly lining up my tobacco in the paper and just rolling. You anticipate the smoke, nicotine and all the glorious crap that goes into making a ciggarette filling your lungs....... A roll up isn't as instant a fix as a regular pack of smokes, you have to work for it. 'Work for it'? How ridiculous! How obscene! People who quit smoking have such backbone in them.
A morning ritual- heave body out of bed, wipe sleep from eyes, scan the room for lighter, fag, ashtray, light up...good morning. I actually enjoy it, fuck it, there I said it...I ACTUALLY ENJOY SMOKING. I am aware of the health implications and that my lungs are probablly held together by a mass of tar and crap- I say, reaching for another.....
I tried giving up the other week with C-Bird. We kept telling ourselves, 'we don't need one, we don't need one!!!' By the end of the day we were screaming the house down. Operation: Clean Lungs lasted one day and one night. Also it didn't help that in order to switch our brains off the nicotine we watched a docuamentary on the Manson Family. It's funny how a documentary about horrific mass murder makes you want to reach for a 20 pack... Next time I think we'll read a book instead.