HARRIET: DISTORTION FESTIVAL!

THE 5 DAY STREET PARTY.

I landed in Copenhagen yesterday to cover DISTORTION festival for i-D. The architecture is completely stunning, like a graphic designers haven. Clean cut shapes, perfectly symmetrical, the residents mirror this, perfection walking amongst perfection. Okay so think Shoreditch with an extreme face lift and a more natural “bottle blonde” look, less “ugly is beautiful” and more “we are all beautiful”. I am being chaperoned round (I asked for a nanny but they said it was out of budget) by a delicious Scandinavian model and her friends. They all have dirty minds, pistol whip the blue-eyed boys and drink beer and suckle sausages until their bellies explode.

Everyone is here for the atmosphere, It’s exhilarating, the streets are cordoned off for this 5 day street party.

After mistaking Copenhagen for a clean-cut quiet city I turned a corner to see 200,000 people jumping on church spires and figures heads to Snoop Doggy Dog, 4 handsome German boys on stage rapping along to Sean Paul and a man using a McDonald’s bag as a sun hat (no eyes holes cut out).

It was complete insanity, every corner you turn a different genre of music awaits you, I think I’m in a jungle.

This is a picture of what I saw last night.

PHOTO BY: Mark Stig Bertelsen

   THE CROWDS IN THE CITY LAST NIGHT:

PHOTO BY: Thorbjørn Chiloux Fessel

Off to ride the “devils” 666 bus now, 2 hour party on a day bus, used by day-to-day Copenhagen commuters.

People are staring at me thinking I’m a rose-coloured alien, it’s an attention seekers paradise. Don’t know if ill come back. Do they sell TIGI in Denmark? We’ll see…

LUCY: UNLOST BY K L GILLESPIE

In the night she cultivates orchids …. and at dawn she talks to birds… I’m talking about K L Gillespie and yesterday I went her UNLOST book launch held at Antenna Studios in Crystal Palace SE19, London.

The book launch delighted and unsettled as much as the book promises to. There were blood thirsty Bloody Marys and Gillespie’s Gin and Tonics, a master of ceremony and a narrator called Max. We were plunged into darkness and submerged into the mind of a blind fantasist. This is erotica but K L Gillespie is no Jilly Cooper, its macabre, lyrical and thought provoking, a drum sounds and its attack of the senses, we are surrounded by an exhibition of the illustrator of UNLOST Mr Jeff Conways’s explicit colourful although monochrome fierce in your face prints with a touch of humour for good measure.

Jeff Conway and the beautiful Urania Li

I was asked to read a passage from the book, 8 of us were plucked from the crowd by a very persuasive Max to read Datum the alphabet of lovers. I got to read G, G for Geoff which thankfully was rather less explicit than the rest. After the reading, we were subjected to some throbbing climatic music to which we swayed and wondered what on earth was going to happen next. When the music climaxed there was silence and that was the end of a most enjoyable yet ‘very unusual for a Sunday’ experience.

Heres my friend Paula with one of Jeffs prints.

Punk looks in on Jesus

About the book… “Unlost is an absorbing collection of dark, sensual, fantastic stories with a flamboyant sense of the absurd that dips into the lives of masturbating surrealists, blind fantasists, sadomasochists and provocative pickpockets. One by one they explore life, death, sex – lost minds, lost love and lost ways. In one breath macabre and relentless but also wildly funny…. Revelling in the sense that life is stranger than we can imagine, this anthology will delight and unsettle in equal measure.”

Above K L Gillespie
http://www.klgillespie.co.uk
Photographs by G Dalton check out more of his work at www.gdalton.tumblr.com
UNLOST GET IT, IT WILL NOT DISAPPOINT.
I’m off to Dubai now so catch you lot in a bit….

SAMI: UNHAPPY BIRTHDAY

You may know Amy Lamé from the radio, or from off the telly, or perhaps you know her as host of Duckie,  Vauxhall clubnight extraordinaire.

You may however, not know her as a stage performer, but if not, you bally well should.

Image

She warmed audiences across the country back in 2006 with her heartfelt melange of Mama Cass, family issues, and plus size princesses with her show ‘Amy Lamé’s Mama Cass Family Singers’, and has returned to the performance world with her latest ‘Unhappy Birthday’.

A ticket to Unhappy Birthday is an exclusive ticket to Amy’s birthday party, where there is a seat saved for legend to the lonely Morrissey, and what a party it turns out to be. Set to a backing track of Morrissey classics, punctuated with a game of pass the parcel the show is a trip through the ego of Amy’s upbringing, self discovery, teen angst and of course her obsession with Morrissey.

Be warned, you may get messy, as this performance has been directed by performance legend Scottee, a well suited collaborative addition to Amy’s style. If you’re a Scottee fan you’ll be able to see his sticky fingered touches scattered throughout the production, to great aplomb.

Amy shone through this performance, her candour was touching, and her comedy was creative. Emotionally, and sometimes physically taking you down a road that showed just how hard it can be to be different. Minimal staging was used to great effect with the addition of a basket full of party supplies, props and a large birthday cake.

I was lucky enough to score a ticket for the penultimate performance in London just before she sped up to Moz homeland Manchester to begin a UK wide tour, details of which can be found on the Unhappy Birthday website www.unhappybirthday.net/

This is the kind of show, that with a good friend or two, and a glass of wine or two will make an ordinary evening into something extraordinary, and definitely something to tell your friends all about. Go and see it.

STEVIE: DEMS

Following on from their recent supporting tour with the brilliant Azelia Banks, Dems played at Old Blue Last recently and I went along with Arielle Free (co-presenter on Keep It On The DL – Shoreditch Radio, every second Thursday 6-8, tune in!) to catch them playing live. The electro trio played to a packed house in the popular East London haunt.

With a crackle of anticipation they came out to whoops and cheers from the crowd, clearly a happy blend of fans and friends alike, with their down-tempo beats and infectious hooks they  gave the awaiting crowd a raucous and energetic set, tearing through tracks such as House and Down On You and ripping through recent single Inner O with ferocity and fervour, which excited the crowds to a bouncing chanting audience.

With the aforementioned support tour already under their belts and Radio 1 airtime also common 2012 looks to be a big year for the boys from the South London…

http://soundcloud.com/dems

LOUIE: COCO FENNELL

Do you know Coco Fennell yet? If not then why the hell not?

She is the hot new designer to watch, and when I say hot I mean she is also very hot, she is signed to Models 1 I’ll have you know! Her dresses can be seen on the likes of Daisy Lowe, Pixie Lott, Gizzi Erskine and many more… I am lucky enough to work with Coco, shooting her look-books along with my team (and TIGI BedHead Street Squaders) Sami Knight, Lucy Wearing and Mimi Wade… I asked Coco a few questions…

LOUIE: So Coco, tell us a bit about your new collection and what inspired you…

COCO: My new collection of prints are inspired by images of antique decoupage and circus posters… the shapes are inspired by 60’s designers and aim to be flattering to lots of different shapes of ladies.

Daisy Lowe in Coco Fennell

LOUIE: Who is your favourite designer?

COCO: My favorite designers are The Blonds and JC de Castelbajac if I had lots of money I’d buy everything they make!

LOUIE: What are you listening to at the minute? Any golden oldies or hot new tracks we should hear about?

COCO: My music taste is that of a 14 year old girl – I’ve just made a playlist made up of Misteeq, Destiny’s Child and 3LW that is really special. I am also loving Dry the River lots of lovely sad beardy men harmonising.

LOUIE: If you could dress anyone from any era, alive or dead who would it have been?

COCO: I would love to have dresses Jayne Mansfield she was a hot buxom lady with a ridiculous figure and a heart shaped swimming pool.

LOUIE: If you where an animal what would you be?

COCO: If I were an animal I would be a sloth because they look all cuddly and slow.

LOUIE: Who you rating, who you slating?

COCO: I am loving Joseph Gilgun and not really hating anyone…hating someone’s always going to come back and bite you in the ass.

LOUIE: Lana Del Rey’s lips…. hot or not?

COCO: Her lips are kind of hot …her whole face looks brand new….I should get the name of her surgeon.

LOUIE: Well Coco I agree she is hot, however I recommend leaving the surgery for now you certainly don’t need it!

Check out Coco’s dresses here… and buy one while your at it! http://www.cocofennell.com/

MIMI: PRÊT A DINER

Arriving just half an hour after we the time we had been invited we were feeling rather good about how prompt we were as we approached 50 St James place, only to be confronted with a queue stretching around the block of hungry oligarchs trying to wheedle their way in. Already the venue was full capacity and but we were smuggled in under the guise of being ‘journalists’ – LOL. The concept of the restaurant is that it remains for a limited time only, which is why I guess everyone was dying to get in before it disappears.

We ascended the mahogany staircase lined with candles where at the top hung an enormous flashing red cross, it was reminiscent of a paired down version of my favourite seen in Romeo + Juliet. In the main dining room a larger then life old master hung on the wall which had been covered in the LV logo, a bit like the famous picture of Lil Kim by Lachapelle. There was a definite theme running, an eclectic mixture of kitsch and baroque decor juxtaposed with very contemporary light sculptures and photographs of Madonna. A neon basketball hoop hung from the ceiling dripping like a chandelier with cut glass and long Banquet tables adorned with ivy and other such vegetation stretched out across the middle of the main room.


The only slight problemo was that the place was so totally heaving it was difficult to find a spot to indulge in the deliciousness that consisted of rare roast beef with parsnip crisps, leaf green broad beans and mashed potato, mini tuna hamburgers accompanied by an oyster in a glass of tonic and Bergamot lemon juice, fritto misto and a kind of ragu esque pot with horseradish. Prêt- a- Diner describes itself as ‘ not a pop-up-restaurant but a dining experience’ not many temporary restaurants can boast menus created by three Michelin star chefs and we were far from disappointed. It is a rare luxury to be treated not only free drinks but free food as well, Sam and Louie took full advantage looking like little Auschwitz children who hadn’t eaten in weeks they chowed down on plate after plate.

The fleeting nature of Prêt-a-Diner did make us feel lucky that we had been and tasted the delights. I would really recommend getting down to the beautiful grade II listed building before it is closes for some unsurpassable scrumptiousness.

http://www.pretadiner.com/

Posted by Mimi on 11/05/12

STEVIE: IN BASILDON

David Eldridge’s latest offering at the Royal Court offers an insight into a working class family torn with feuds and riffs that date back many a moon brought together by the imminent death of brother/uncle Len. With a strong British cast this ensemble piece was set in the round and explored beautifully the tensions and relationships that occur between families, neighbours and partners. From the daughter who’s trying to loose her working class roots, to the best friend who’s strong morals and working class pride provide a boiling pot for drama.
With some razor sharp dry lines, and genuine tender moments the play twists through the highs and lows of a family in mourning with issues yet to unearth, itching to burst forth.

As the play roles on, the thoughts and demons that have bubbled under come to the fore under the strain of death, with an outburst at the generous neighbour, outbursts of love that have been trapped deep within souls for years and the two children of the families trying their best to pull everyone together and to put their differences aside for the sake of family and the deceased.

David Eldridge again proves with this taught, dry sharp script that he is one of the best wrting talents England has to offer. I look forward to his next piece, and the tast makers at Royal Court again prove to have exceptional taste.