Wednesday, 28 April 2010


Seen that one from Sunday twice now, having watched it at 2am on Monday morning which was nice, along with a Heroes takeaway, which was ok.
There's a cute little something between Sylar and Peter!

Last one over the weekend, and I miss that too because I'm off to see another band, this time The Futureheads are opening their 2010 tour at Middlesbrough, as part of The Empire's Metropolis club night which will be fun. This one's a late start at 9pm. And also, their new album, The Chaos, is out now so blend that into your ears.

Sunday, 25 April 2010


On our way to the Academy we encountered a load of people dressed like lifeguards with CARNAGE t-shirts on. Wherever they were off to, there certainly wasn't going to be any carnage as Ash were in town and now of them were there. Tonight's show saw them joined by Bloc Party's Russell Lissack who is the band's honourary fourth member for their second A-Z Tour - to commemorate their 26 singles in a year which is now up to N.

Considering Ash's fanbase as being quite large and dedicated - as well as diverse - the show was surprisingly not sold out, maybe everyone had dressed up like lifeguards instead. Daftys.

It's been nearly 20 years since Ash have formed so this show, as usual, had to show the best of each 'era'. Playing new tracks from their A-Z series, they also revisited 1977, did some Kung Fu and played an epic encore featuring Twilight of the Innocents. It has to be said though that for much of the new tracks, the majority of the crowd rarely moved. Could this be that the new stuff isn't faring as well?

The A-Z preview track Return of White Rabbit showed a possible dancier side to Ash which was expected to follow. Single A, True Love 1980, sounded like a space arcade and completely erased expectation. B, Joy Kicks Darkness, was again different and the series began to track back to Ash's love of space. It's always a nice thing to see a band prove they're not just one song - bands that are know who they are, I'm watching you - but sometimes it doesn't work. Having said that, the newer tracks did sound better live and the crowd did seem to be enjoying it. Which is all a band wants.

Ash going back and playing songs like, or basically just forgot that and make it just this one in particular. Meltdown live now seems to be turning into one of those rare treats, a track that gets its time until it's thrown to the bottom of the pile and forgotten about which is a shame because this was one of the tracks that defined who Ash were, showed what they could do, and more importantly came along on an album that also produced Orpheus.

So let's look back on Ash's last 20 years (or if you want to be specific - 18 years) and let them take centre stage, they are still certainly a band worth seeing and is probably one of the most epic performance makers of the year so far.

The Vitamin String Quartet & Ash

Discovered these last night - basically they take songs by contemporary artists and arrange them on strings. They've done 'tributes' to System of a Down, Muse, Sum 41, Green Day and The Cure, creating by the latter a version of Just Like Heaven that one could walk down the aisle to. People admitted in the YouTube comments for already having done so, saying that it could possibly replace Canon in D Minor. So, that, alongside other stuff, is available for download on Amazon at about 79p a track or £6.99 an album, round abouts.

Ash are playing Newcastle's O2 Academy tonight with support from The Parlotones who I discovered like to make random vocal sounds. So instead of Sylarwatch, you'll be getting an update from that and Sylarwatch will follow shortly! Having said that, I've not been doing Heroes updates on here for a while.

  • Hiro collapsed and was rushed to hospital where he 'died', fought Adam Monroe in a fight before the light until finally meeting his dead mum who's a healer. Lucky.
  • Noah is in blame for half the carnival getting shot. It was really Mr Multiplier.
  • And Matt has Sylar half buried in his basement after he came to him so Matt could remove his powers. Peter intervened and now he's pretty much fucked too.
There's about four episodes to go and whether or not there'll be a season 5 remains to be seen. NBC have said they might do another 13 episodes which will put the writers under a lot of pressure to get it finished in quality.
So keep looking out for that, and have a look at my shiny new poll.

Saturday, 24 April 2010

Uni article - Viva City go to America

We’re at The Cluny, where Newcastle’s very own Viva City are preparing for their farewell gig before jetting off to America to add the prestigious South by South West to their roster.

The festival, based in Austin, Texas, first started in March 1987 as a cultural event to bring people from all over the world together for a week of film and music. The festival has been played by the likes of The Futureheads, Bloc Party and Morrissey, in previous years. And now it’s time for SXSW 2010.

Viva City applied to perform this year but never thought they actually be invited to attend. The four piece band are Newcastle’s cream of the crop, having played sell out shows in London’s KOKO venue as well as winning a slot for the Camden Crawl, which was based on a fan voting system.

And after that they are flying off to Austin, Texas, to play not just one, but three shows at this year’s shindig.

Viva City – Ali Allerdyce, Trev Cairns, Bruce Tate and Chris Cairns – have been wowing crowds in Newcastle with their synthy electro-pop since forming in 2006 and made a mark in the UK indie charts back in 2008 when their debut single Kate Bush hit number 3.

Since then they’ve collaborated with the “Most Popular Dutch DJ” – a status given at the GKA Awards – Don Diablo for Audio Endlessly, who reworked the track to guarantee a full
dance floor. The new, as of yet untitled album, is currently being put together.

The lads are hoping the US crowd take to their tunes; this will decide whether or not it’s the right time for the album to come out.

On the night of the ‘farewell Newcastle’ gig, The Cluny was packed with revellers out for a good time. In between arguing over which beers to buy, I managed to grab a few minutes with Ali and Bruce to discuss The Cluny’s food menu.

“The nacho’s are hit and miss here,” exclaims Bruce.

Nachos aren’t really important here. What is, though, and we will get there, is how the band feel about their upcoming American shows.

“We’re really looking forward to it. It’s just a good opportunity to showcase our music to the rest of the world,” Bruce explains. “I don’t know what to expect. It’s just a festival in a city.”

When asked how the shows would compare to gigs they’ve played in the UK, there were barely any words to describe their thoughts. The answer they did come to was “Hotter” showing that they have a sense of humour we can relate to.

Ali said: “I can imagine playing in America as a shocking experience.”

The trip also included time to shoot a video for their track Remove Moneymaker in LA as well as numerous DJ sets and an encounter with the DeLorean time machine featured in the Back to the Future trilogy.

When it came to naming the band, they wanted something that showed what they were about;
full of life and energy. So Viva City was a perfect choice. It certainly doesn’t need mentioning that’s a play on words though! I’m sure that’s easy to see. In an interview with SXSW’s official coverage website, Spinner Music, Ali noted; “[That’s] what you can expect from a live show.”

Back in The Cluny and the support bands are sound-checking, Chris and Trev have gone to Morrison’s to buy beer and I’m sat on a sofa with Bruce and Ali, who is reading the label on a bottle of Buxton water.

“This water has been filtered naturally for 5000 years and the sell by date is September.”

That’s just one of those things you never really think about until someone mentions it and it makes you think. But that topic is not for now. Viva City played a sell out show at The Cluny 2 last year to launch the single Have You Ever Felt So Messed up, my copy of which is sat in a frame on the wall. The venue was rammed with half-naked teenagers enjoying what Ali described as “a 14 year olds rave. That’s the sort of gigs I wanna play!”

The band enjoy playing gigs for underage kids. I reminisced to them about being unable to go and enjoy a band at that age because of age restrictions on the venues. Bruce describes a younger crowd as being “more fun. They’ve got no inhibitions so they just get to the front and jump up and down. We put [some] shows on ourselves for the reason that under 18’s can get in.”

So there’s no middle man there stopping fans from being able to see them. The kids are happy, as are the band. What’s wrong with that? Although nightclubs like Digital are still
appealing, Viva City are always back at The Cluny to entertain the younger crowd.

Speaking of underage crowds, a recent Viva City appearance was at this year’s T4 Outside In Festival at The Sage in Gateshead where the crowd was “really young. That was all like 14, 15 year olds,” Bruce recalls. And yes, they were completely off their heads. The crowd, I mean.

“They were all sneaking bottles of vodka in,” tells Ali, of the mostly underage crowd calling it “a proper Geordie event.”

So what’s next for Viva City? “The album’s due out September,” Bruce hopes. As do the fans who have been with them from the start. Viva City have spent a lot of time playing shows lately and building their fan base to the extent where voting systems – such as the Camden Crawl which was mentioned earlier – are getting them showcasing their talent in the capital. They’ve still had time to get into the studio and record most of their album which is slowly piecing itself together. September isn’t set in stone as a release date. Bruce admits it’s all up to their success at SXSW as “we want to release it at the right time.”

They are a band that deserves every little piece of success coming to them and following on from their triumphant launch in the States, they definitely have it coming.

(Photo by the Viva City photographer)

Saturday, 17 April 2010

Stupid laws still in act (for some reason)

1. It is illegal to die in the Houses of Parliament.
2. It is an act of treason to place a postage stamp bearing the British monarch upside-down.
3. In Liverpool , it is illegal for a woman to be topless except as a clerk in a tropical fish store
4. Mince pies cannot be eaten on Christmas Day
5. In Scotland, if someone knocks on your door and requires the use of your toilet, you must let them enter
6. A pregnant woman can legally relieve herself anywhere she wants, including in a policeman’s helmet
7. The head of any dead whale found on the British coast automatically becomes the property of the king, and the tail of the queen
8. It is illegal to avoid telling the tax man anything you do not want him to know, but legal not to tell him information you do not mind him knowing
9. It is illegal to enter the Houses of Parliament in a suit of armour
10. In the city of York it is legal to murder a Scotsman within the ancient city walls, but only if he is carrying a bow and arrow

1. Australia - It is illegal to roam the streets wearing black clothes, felt shoes and black shoe polish on your face as these items are the tools of a cat burglar.
2. France - Between the hours of 8AM and 8PM, 70% of the music in the radio must be by French composers.
3. Thailand - It is illegal to leave your house if you are not wearing underwear.
4. Italy - It is an offence for women of 'ill repute or evil looks' to enter a cheese factory in the area of Ferrara.
5. Scotland - It is illegal to be a drunk while in possession of a cow.
6. France - It is illegal in Antibes to take photos of police officers or police vehicles, even if they are just in the background.
7. Lebanon - Men are legally allowed to have sex with animals so long as the animals are female. It is illegal to have sex with a male animal.
8. China - Women are prohibited from walking around a hotel room in the nude. A woman may only be naked whilst in the bathroom.
9. Hong Kong - A woman is legally allowed to kill her cheating husband, only if she uses her bare hands. The husband's lover however may be killed in any manner desired.
10. Switzerland - A man may not relieve himself while standing up, after 10 P.M.

Absolute madness.


Sooooo... after queuing for one whole hour outside Newcastle's RPM, I wasn't expecting to grab a copy of a rare pressing of the new Futureheads so was getting pretty "Nevermind" but someone must have been on my side because I got there, asked and after a "Yes" from the assistant I rose into a cheer!

The b-side is a track called Agent Cooper and I must say it's bloody fantastic!

Friday, 16 April 2010

I'm actually apalled at some people's spelling

So, this got brought up today. The number of people who can't actually spell is just ridiculous. I mean, would you write like that in an English exam? No! Instead it's a case of "It's only FaceBook... blah blah blah etc." I can understand with texting, you only have a limited space to write so obviously you're going to shorten words to text speak but on the web there is just no need. Ok, so it saves time but think about the people who don't understand text speak. Think about the people whose English isn't even their first language and they are trying harder than you. I used to be an offender of this on a forum and used the excuse, "It's not an English exam!" but found that they were right! Think about people that can't read so well! Some people must feel pathetically stupid if someone who speaks English as a second language is writing better than they themselves are. The way kids are going now is just horrendous and I feel sorry for the most of them for being brought up the way they were, but for others there is just no excuse.
I was thinking of writing a short dictionary so that people learn how to spell right but it's just not worth the hassle. So instead I shall say this: Learn to type or just continue making people think you're an absolute arsehole.
Thank you.

Wednesday, 14 April 2010

Wowzers! That boy can drum!

Just been listening to Maybe Just Sad by Mando Diao, and my eyes pricked up to the sound of the drums, something I rarely do and I must so, Samuel Giers is a genius! That drumming is fantastic! That is all x


As it is apparent from looking at my profile, Mando Diao have taken up a lot of my recent time and have given me belief in myself to be President of the Newcastle Unit of their Street Team, which has units covering the entire world to be true. Their songs are fantastic and they certainly deserve the awards, fans etc that they get. The one thing, and that's my job to do, as part of the street team, is to basically propel Mando Diao into worldwide stardom which they will love and deserve. So this is my invitation for you to join the street team at and serving the band with little missions, the smallest of things, to help. Please give me, and the others, a hand. Join the crew, have some fun and enjoy the music.

Tuesday, 13 April 2010

Twitter is for people who are too lazy to write a blog

I came up with the above and after some thought believed it to be true. So I sit here and write some words to go with it. Twitter is basically a blogging tool but it's then again basically exactly the same as the status update thing on facebook but without the website to go with it. What's the point?

Anyway, Saturday is Record Store Day and 500 vinyl copies of The Futureheads Heartbeat Song are getting released specially. Sounds good, yeah?

Monday, 12 April 2010

Heartbeat Song

Digital copy only I'm afraid. It's on iTunes for 79p and Amazon have it for 69p. Whatever floats your boat. Full single contains a couple of remixes for your ears. Enjoy.

Sunday, 11 April 2010

Heartbeat Song

Futureheads new single, Heartbeat Song, is out in full glory tomorrow. Available in all good record shops (probably).

Wednesday, 7 April 2010

YAY! Good News For The People Who Like Bad News!

Not really, just makes a good album title. But....


It didn't get destroyed by a virus and taken over by a porn website. The fun, games, and street teaming is back online. So get your arse over there and spread the Man(do) love.

I love you.


Monday, 5 April 2010

Mando Diao's website hi-jacked.

The website at now redirects automatically to a porn website, lovely. The site has been down for a few days, some kind of system error that is also affecting emails to/from their HQ. It is kind of annoying. Please spread the word. Hopefully we'll be back online soon.

//Newcastle Special Unit.

Saturday, 3 April 2010

Advert pisstakes

So I was messing around on YouTube and on the main page was a link ro a Go Compare advert with Jimmy Carr that I just had to watch, so I did, laughed long and hard and then posted it here.

Also came across this mash up video the other day too. Well, I didn't, a friend did but I'll just take credit for it. What do you reckon?