Monday, February 06, 2006

chasing clogs and the books writeup - looks@books

the music - the books

clogs shared the tour (and in some parts the stage) with the books, who were refreshing, exciting and got a standing ovation in brighton. they consist of a cellist (paul), a guitarist (nick), a projector and samples.

one of the visuals they had to the opening song (that right ain't shit) was archive footage of the founding fathers of the mormons raising and re-putting on their hats (with bizarre expressions and the odd rub of the head).

the set list from the books (this is probably incomplete and not in the right order. i may even have made some of it up - my pen was wedged firmly in a folded up jumper - i was travelling like a snail, with my entire life in a the national tote bag) was as follows:

that right ain't shit
see mormon footage details above

an owl with knees
all owls have knees. unless they're extremely unlucky.

smells like content
"and meanwhile, we're furiously sleeping green"
i hope i've heard that correctly.
i'm possibly in danger of disappearing up my own overanalytical ass here, but could it be a reference to the chomsky quote "Colorless green ideas sleep furiously"?
(further discussion on the chomsky thing here)

be good to them always
"here we are... here we are... we are anticipa.. there it is. there it is! that's the picture... you see.. you see it for yourself. there it is.. it's a man.".. i wonder if it was this that had the gorgeous video of the ducks swimming, shot from under the water?

the future, wouldn't that be nice?
starts off with clapping. i always think it's going to be 'take time'.

don't even sing about it
"get used to hanging if you're hanging long enough"? love the crashing noises on this and the "now i have to buy three whiskey sodas" (again, i might well have misheard this).

if not now, whenever
'i like to go home and go to sleep'. it's this one that had the 'angel of death' quote. and excellent footage of long jumps and shiny blue athletics trousers.

take time
"for the first time in the history of the world, a young girl climbed into a tree one day. she climbed down from the tree next day. god bless her."joyful, exuberant and funny. visuals included african women joking about impotence (it's not the length, it's the strength!), dancing, evangelists, bouncy castles (i think?)...

twelve fold chain
apparently based on buddhist philosophy. padma newsome provided additional vocals. the visuals were of planes, and nick said it was because the song made them think of sea or air journeys. gorgeous.

it never changes to stop
terrifying disciplinarian with a voice described as (paraphrasing) 'the sound of a meteor heading towards the earth'
i think it was this one with footage of fish and jellyfish and the like. one of the most soothing things i've ever seen and heard at the same time.

the comical penguin
written by mikey, nick's brother, a veritable romp, with absolutely beautiful and funny home video footage of the band members and mikey growing up.

there was footage of running animals somewhere. lots of them. animals running fast. lions and tigers and bears, oh my. and cows. and everything. oh yesh.

they had two video 'interludes'. one was the word 'meditation' repeated (possibly by paul) over a montage of anagrams of 'meditation'. 'a timid note'. 'do it mean it' 'i minted tao' 'dominate it' 'i do mint tea'... "the ideal nite of vomit" (i think it was, at least - the meditation of evil?) (again, full artistic licence(licence? license?) taken in the reposting of those)

there was also incredible 30s (?)archive footage from washington dc of a young fellow playing 'yankee doodle' with his hands, kind of squeaking it. he was, uh, very special. made me giggle lots.

the books are into their thrift shops and banjos. if they answer my interview i'll send them a banjo party lp (separate novelty lp post to come). i'm sure they'd love it.
and also a love of poetry/stevie smith - she is the sample stating 'i am the angel of death' on 'if not now, whenever' - and paul managed to pick up the original lp in a brighton charity shop. yay

oh and an extra lovely track: vogt dig von kloppervok

also please note - although soulseek etck is fantabulous, there are a few bands/labels - mainly the smaller ones like these - where i am realising that it's not a good idea to download.. (not that it's a good idea to download anything from anywhere, of course. unless it's authorised. hm.)

the books, if you want to hear more (and want to not pirate stuff), have this page on their website, which has all their albums to listen to online.

as they point out, "We feel the need to dispel any notions that we are financially sitting pretty because of the acclaim our music has enjoyed. It's true, we've released a couple of records and we're grateful to all of the writers who have taken the time to write about them, but unfortunately our record sales do not reflect this. Our work, although deeply satisfying to us, has left us both on the brink of financial collapse since we began, so we are asking you: Please, do not steal our music thinking that we can afford it. We barely get by, and aren't able to afford basic things like health insurance, let alone raising a family, etc. We love what we do, and we love that people listen, but if you would like to see our work continue, please support us, and all of the artists you enjoy, as directly as possible. The sad fact is, we can make a much better living selling t-shirts than we can selling music, so please help us keep this going."

honestly, $11 for an album is peanuts (relatively).

go shopping!

books online store
clogs at

the merchandising stall was like an aladdins cave. i was sorely tempted by lantern, thought for food on vinyl and the lantern dvd. in the end, i went for t shirts. the records will be bought on payday online.

the t shirts have the following prettiness on:

(heh - while i was googling for a 'lantern' image, this showed up - at three or four record stores... )

all the clogs and books links/samples are from the bands' own websites, or their record labels (apart from the video, which i will double check the source of). thanks to them for putting them up.

and, fantastically, the books and clogs interviewed each other in the guardian the other week. clicky here

oh and have a childlike computer scribble too...


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