Cameraman: The Life and Work of Jack Cardiff

Inspiring documentary on the legendary cinematographer.


29th Sep 2010

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Live Dust

Lightning Dust's Infinite Light (review here) is looking like an album-of-the-year for me - and now they're bringing their live show to the UK.

November 30: London, Bush Hall w/Early Day Miners 7.30pm, £10 adv - Tickets
December 1: Cardiff, Clwb Ifor Bach w/Early Day Miners 7.30pm, £8 adv - Tickets
December 2: Birmingham, Capsule 10th Birthday @ Town Hall w/Tunng, Six Organs Of Admittance - Tickets
December 3: Glasgow, Captains Rest w/Early Day Miners 8pm, £9 adv - Tickets
December 4: Manchester, Roadhouse 7pm, £8 adv - Tickets
December 5: Brighton, Lectern w/Early Day Miners 7.30pm, £8 adv - Tickets

The band also have a new video for track Never Seen, which you can download as an mp3 here, along with killer track I Knew here.


13th Oct 2009 - Add Comment - Tweet

Review The Crowd: U2 360° Tour

Millennium Stadium


In a new departure, we asked intrepid reporter, (and noted scholar of the Edge effect pedal board), Dr Chimp to file a review of the U2 crowd outside the Millenium Stadium in Cardiff on Saturday 22 Aug, 2009...

It should be noted that U2 have the most unstylish fans in the world. There were some truly horrendous mullets (non-ironic mode) on display around town this afternoon, and lots of men in cowboy boots. And dozens of people were already unconscious or semi-unconscious outside the pubs near the stadium by about 3pm.

That's not far off a usual Saturday in Cardiff, of course, but the snowwash-o-meter had been cranked up a notch or two.

Overheard a hilarious conversation between a group of teenagers on the train as it passed the stadium, too. I was actually laughing to myself and trying to not be noticed by them. It went something like this:

Teenager 1: Who the fuck would queue up to get in early to see U2?

Teenager 2: Bunch of daft cunts.

Teenager 3: My dad asked me if I wanted to go with him, and I was, like, 'Don't think so!'

Teenager 4: What's that shit song of theirs? Lovely Day?

Teenager 5: Sunny Day.

Teenager 6: Beautiful Day.

Teenager 7: Cunt Day.  


25th Aug 2009 - Add Comment - Tweet

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Van Morrison: To Be Born Again

he may have questionable taste in leather jackets, but there's no doubting Van Morrison's recent musical judgement. following the Astral Weeks revival (and the sublime versions of Fair Play and Linden Arden that Dr Chimp and I were blown away by in Cardiff earlier this summer) he's released details of a film documenting the recording, rehearsals and tour of it all on To Be Born Again. too late to stop now, indeed…


20th Aug 2009 - 1 comments - Add Comment - Tweet

Sunset Rubdown On Tour

I was going to make some lewd innuendo about getting a Rubdown in Europe or something, but with this supplied press shot it's just too easy.

Sunset Rubdown play the following venues in support of their excellent Dragonslayer.

September 10 Glasgow, Stereo 7.30pm, £9 adv
September 11 Belfast, Spring And Airbrake 9pm, £12.25 adv
September 12 Dublin, Crawdaddy 8pm, €14 adv
September 13 Leeds, Brudenell Social Club 7pm, £9 adv
September 14 Manchester, The Deaf Institute 7.30pm, £9 adv
September 15 London, Garage 7pm, £10 adv
September 16 Cardiff, The Globe 8pm, £9 adv


10th Jul 2009 - Add Comment - Tweet

Promo Promo: The Veils

Video up for the new single from The Veils - The Letter. New album Sun Gangs arrives next week.

They're going on tour too:

Apr 15 London Dingwalls
Apr 16 Brighton The Hope
Apr 17 Guilford Boiler Room
Apr 18 Reading Oaskford Social Club
Apr 20th Nottingham Bodega
Apr 21 Manchester Ruby Lounge
Apr 22 Cardiff Barfly
Apr 23 Birmingham Rainbow
Apr 24 Preston Mad Ferret
Apr 25th Glasgow V Club


31st Mar 2009 - Add Comment - Tweet

New Furry Animals

Super Furry Animals will be unveiling their new album next week, via a webcast on their site where they will play the record through live, in it's entirety. Dark Days/Light Years will then be available to purchase through the site - well before it hits the 'shops' on April 13th.

Album tracklisting as follows

1. Crazy Naked Girls
2. Mt
3. Moped Eyes
4. Inaugural Trams
5. Inconvenience
6. Cardiff In The Sun
7. The Very Best Of Neil Diamond
8. Helium Hearts
9. White Socks / Flip Flops
10. Where Do You Wanna Go?
11. Lliwiau Llachar
12. Pric


10th Mar 2009 - Add Comment - Tweet

New Hitchcock in 2009

Chimp hero Robyn Hitchcock is touring the UK next year, with songs from his forthcoming album Goodnight Oslo, out on Valentine's day. Recorded with The Venus Three – Peter Buck (guitar) and R.E.M. mainstays Scott McCaughey (bass, vocals) and Bill Rieflin (drums) – and all-round legend Ryuichi Sakamoto.

Sat 7th            GLASGOW, ABC2                                                 £13.50
Sun 8th           NEWCASTLE, Academy 2                                    £12.50
Tue 10th         LEEDS, Brudenell Social Club                               £12
Wed 11th       BIRMINGHAM, Glee Club                                    £12.50
Thu 12th         LONDON, Union Chapel                                      £15
Fri 13th            BURY, The Met                                                       £13.50
Sat 14th          BRACKNELL, South Hill Park Arts Centre             £15                 
Mon 16th       BRIGHTON, Komedia                                            £12.50
Tue 17th         CAMBRIDGE, Junction 2                                      £16.50
Wed 18th       BRISTOL, The Fleece                                              £12.50
Thu 19th         CARDIFF, The Globe                                             £9
Robyn recently headed to the Arctic with the Cape Farewell project and Martha Wainwright, KT Tunstall, Jarvis Cocker, Feist and Sakamoto - must have been some jam.


12th Nov 2008 - Add Comment - Tweet

Ladyhawk and The Dudes On Tour

2008 favourites Ladyhawk are hitting Europe this month, with London dates at the Windmill and the Borderline - where they are playing with The Dudes. A review of their album will be hitting these pages on Thursday.

September 23 London, The Windmill 8pm, £5
September 24 Leeds, Brudenell Social Club 7.30pm, £5
September 26 Glasgow, Nice N Sleazy w/The Dudes 7.30pm, £7.50
September 27 Dublin, Crawdaddy w/The Dudes 8pm, €14
September 28 Manchester, Roundhouse 8pm, £6
September 29 Bristol, St Bonaventure's Parish Club w/The Dudes
September 30 Cardiff, Clwb Ifor Bach w/The Dudes 8pm, £6
October 1 London, Borderline w/The Dudes 7.30pm, £10

Then The Dudes are back at The Windmill on October 2nd and are playing at the Bloomsbury Bowling Lanes on October 3rd.



2nd Sep 2008 - Add Comment - Tweet

You Get What You Pay For

Chimp favourite Seth Rogan has been busy again, working with writing partner Kristofor Brown (his spelling, not ours) on Drillbit Taylor. It's a high-school comedy (what else?) about two bullied kids who hire former mercenary Drillbit Taylor (Owen Wilson) to protect them. It's from a story by first-gen high-school comedy hero John Hughes.

As a loyal Chimpomatic reader, you can get free tickets to a preview by clicking here and using code: 848222

Even chimps residing in star-systems as remote as Manchester, Cardiff and Bournemouth can participate.

Check out the trailer here.

Out in cinemas March 28th, certificate 12a.

(c) 2007 by Paramount Pictures. All Rights Reserved.


3rd Mar 2008 - Add Comment - Tweet

Los Campesinos!

Hold On Now Youngster

Wichita Recorings

WIth a rousing battle cry of "1,2,3,4!", sprawling Cardiff 7-piece Los Campesinos! arrive on your speakers like a mini-bus full of students on trip up to a Hoxton art gallery.

The Ramones-esque names, wacky song titles and personality that the band seem to have in bounds will certainly go a long way to propel them into mass popularity, but their success comes from the punchy delivery of their call and response style - male counterpointing female, then teaming up for a rousing chorus. Obvious maybe, effective certainly.

While enthusiasm goes a long way to pasting over the cracks of the band's fairly limited range, their pocket book poetry and student theorising of This Is How You Spell "Haha Ha, We Destroyed The Hopes And Dreams Of A Generation Of Faux - Romantics" is a little hard too bear, and at times you might feel like your on a mini-bus trip up to and art gallery in Hoxton.

Comparisons to early Wedding Present or Arcade Fire seem a litlle misplaced, as Los Campesinos! lack the depth and musical breadth of either of those bands - at any stage of their careers. By far the longest song here, You! Me ! Dancing! shows some promise, trying to mix it up a bit, adding a slow-building intro which builds up nicely before reverting to the exisiting formula.

While it's hard not to get spent along in the boundless enthusiasm, there are very few specific tracks or highlights that can be pulled out here. It's all the same. All inoffensive. All fun.


25th Feb 2008 - Add Comment - Tweet

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Season 2 Episode 1

Didn't really get into the first series of Torchwood - have to admit, Doctor Who's passed me by for the most part, so a spin-off didn't really excite that much. And the ones I watched felt like they were relying too much on the ooh! shock! factor with their swearing/snogging and not enough on either the sci-fi or characters to make it work.

Maybe my expectations were lowered, but the first ep of the second series (on BBC2 Jan 16) is a big improvement on what I've seen before. It's snappier, tighter, and feels like they've listened to the critics and tried to fix the problems. You've still got a Cardiff that's pretty much empty, and the odd shot of Cap'n Jack jumping up on a rooftop (a character trait they point out) and some of the trademark polysexual kissing. But on the other hand, they've drafted in James Marsters - Spike from the mighty Buffy.

Now, it may be that it all goes down the pan again further on in the series when he's not around to beat the crap out of Jack, but it's a pretty inspired cameo, even if he is basically playing the very Spike-like "rogue Time Agent Captain John Hart". He's got real presence, and has obviously got used to delivering lines about odd creatures and made-up fantasy blah with real intensity over the years. He also looks a bit like one of Adam's Ants, circa Kings Of The Wild Frontier.

They also cram in some Star Wars references, a nice "where are the blondes on your team?" Buffy gag, and even almost get you to forget all those annoying appearances from Barrowman on Strictly Come Dancing, Jonathan Ross and BBC Breakfast etc.

Am all in favour of the BBC working on new genre pieces like this, and do think the return of the Who enterprise has on the whole been a good thing - even if it's really more of a teatime kids treat than the multi-level fun that US shows like Buffy managed to create. Hope it continues to get better from here - Captain Spike is back for a few more eps, along w Alan "Jim from Neighbours" and Martha from the Tardis later on.


4th Jan 2008 - 7 comments - Add Comment - Tweet

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Brakes and Veils

Chimp favourites Brakes are on a Uni tour in October:

Sep 25 London UCL Union
Oct 01  Hull Asylum, Hull University
Oct 02  Glasgow Oran Mor
Oct 03  Aberdeen Moshulu
Oct 04  Sheffield Fuzz Club, Sheffield University
Oct 06  Manchester Club Academy
Oct 07  Newcastle Northumbria University
Oct 09  Coventry Warwick University
Oct 13  Bath Bath Moles Student Night

The Veils are also on tour with Ed Harcourt. BC's been sitting on their excellent album Nux Vomica for a while...

Oct 02 Liquid Rooms Edinburgh with Ed Harcourt
Oct 03 Oran Mor Glasgow with Ed Harcourt
Oct 04 Stage 2 Newcastle with Ed Harcourt
Oct 06 Academy 3 Manchester with Ed Harcourt
Oct 07 Fibbers York with Ed Harcourt
Oct 09 Brudenell Leeds with Ed Harcourt
Oct 10 Leadmill Sheffield with Ed Harcourt
Oct 11 Barfly Liverpool with Ed Harcourt
Oct 12 The Graduate Cambridge with Ed Harcourt
Oct 14 Arts Centre Norwich with Ed Harcourt
Oct 15 Rescue Rooms Nottingham with Ed Harcourt
Oct 16 Barfly Birmingham with Ed Harcourt
Oct 18 Point Cardiff with Ed Harcourt
Oct 19 Triinty Bristol with Ed Harcourt
Oct 20 Zodiac Oxford with Ed Harcourt
Oct 22 Digital Brighton with Ed Harcourt
Oct 23 Koko London with Ed Harcourt


13th Sep 2007 - Add Comment - Tweet

Support Clinic

Clinic are lined up to support Arcade Fire this Autumn, making it a gig BC won't want to miss. Except he's on holiday. But he should be back by November.

Fri Oct 26th - Glasgow, SECC
Sat Oct 27th - Manchester, MEN
Mon Oct 29th - Newcastle, Arena
Tue Oct 30th - Cardiff, Arena
Wed Oct 31st - Nottingham, Arena
Sun Nov 18th - London, Alexandra Palace


17th Jul 2007 - Add Comment - Tweet


Sure, eveybody's loving Arcade Fire at the moment, but to make things even better a lot of their UK tour will be supported by Electrelane. And if that's not good enough, Electrelane will carry on with their own tour in support of their great new album No Shouts, No Calls which is out in April. Check the Scala show for a great line up: Electrelane, Brakes and The Early Years.

20 Apr - CARDIFF The Point
27 Apr - PARIS La Cigale
07 May - MANCHESTER Academy 3 (with The Early Years)
08 May - NOTTINGHAM Social (with The Early Years)
09 May - LONDON Scala (with The Brakes & The Early Years)


Too Pure Podcast



9th Feb 2007 - Add Comment - Tweet


Season One, Episode One

New Doctor Who spin-off series (oooh it's an anagram). Captain Jack Harkness (the American one who snogged the Doctor) is in charge of another one of those super top secret alien police organisations where everyone wears long trenchcoats and spends their time reverse-engineering alien technology and ordering pizza.

Feels similar to Who, with added swearing, which feels a bit pointless - it's not much more graphic than Who, and seems almost mean to make a spin-off that kids can't watch (or won't be supposed to). It's got the same sort of budget (ie not enough for large crowd scenes, so there's a bit in the pilot where a cop is trying to usher people away from a crime scene, but there's no-one to actually usher away, which is quite odd), and mines the Men In Black secret HQ idea, except it seems to be hidden under the Cardiff cultural centre. For some reason they keep having meetings on top of buildings, perhaps because they stretched the budget to include some helicopter shots.

It's not bad, and might build into something worthwhile, but it's hard not to feel like we've seen all this done much better w the X-Files, MIB, Dark Skies etc… That said, would rather see BBC3 making this than another series of A Packet Of Crisps, or Dogtown…


10th Oct 2006 - 130 comments - Add Comment - Tweet

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The Victorian English Gentlemen's Club

The Victorian English Gentlemen's Club

This is the debut album from the Cardiff based trio and although terms like art-pop or art punk are being banded around (like having met at art school makes this album a sure thing), don't be fooled. I was sceptical at first as they had all the makings of a big disappointment - lots of media hype, quirky name and heavy styling - but after the first listen you start to see that these early signs are very misleading. With Adam Taylor on vocals and guitar, Emma Daman on drums, Louise Mason on bass and all contributing to backing vocals the result is a rich yet stripped down noise that assaults and delights at the same time.

The first highlight comes early on with Stupid As Wood. It's dark rolling guitars tell you that it means business. Adam Taylor's vocals stab at you with erratic energy putting your nerves on full alert. Impossible Sightings Over Shelton could be the Pixies in their heyday while Such A Chore clatters around almost unrecognisably until a gloriously catchy chorus blasts in out of nowhere. A Hundred Years Of This Street is a minor masterpiece, changing pace at an unrelenting rate while Ban The Gin is pure, precocious noise. The finest moment has to be Under The Yews. Just as you've summed them up as angular punk who's power comes from it's simplified, raw sound you get this multi layered, slow burning ground assault that confidently creeps up and kicks your arse.

The great thing here is that, while very conscious of their roots and not ashamed to show their influences, this trio seems to bash around like they aren't even aware of a music scene and this honesty is displayed with cocky ease and the result is thrilling.


13th Sep 2006 - Add Comment - Tweet

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Bob Dylan


I'm not quite sure why you would, if playing just two UK dates in 2006, choose Cardiff and Bournemouth, but there's little point in trying to figure out how Bob Dylan's mind works. Last night's Cardiff show was a competent, solid, but slightly predictable affair that left me longing for the spontaneous magic of the 2003 Hammersmith show to which Chimp71 was kind enough to take me. In fact, when one of the highlights of the evening is spotting Paul Morley in the queue, you know that you've witnessed one of those dreaded 'average' Dylan shows. There were some lovely moments – 'Ballad of a Thin Man' and 'Cold Irons Bound' were delivered with real verve, and the beautiful arrangement of 'Girl of the North Country' that he does these days is always a joy to hear – but many of the songs ('Positively 4th Street', 'Absolutely Sweet Marie', and 'Watching the River Flow', for instance) were decidedly lacklustre. What really depressed me, though, was the predictability of the set list, which was far too close for my liking to the one wheeled out for last week's Irish shows. If you look at the running order of last night's gig against that of Sunday's Cork show, for instance, you'll see that the first three and the last five songs are exactly the same (and in the same order, too). When you've got a back catalogue as extensive as Dylan's, this is unforgivable (and it's the reason that I haven't been to see Van Morrison for about four years). There's a new album, Modern Times, coming in August, though, and it's five years since the last one appeared, so perhaps before long times will be a-changing for the better.

Full set list:
Maggie's Farm
She Belongs to Me
Tweedle Dee & Tweedle Dum
Positively 4th Street
Stuck Inside of Mobile with the Memphis Blues Again
Love Sick
Watching the River Flow
Ballad of a Thin Man
Absolutely Sweet Marie
Girl of the North Country
Cold Irons Bound
Don't Think Twice, It's All Right
Summer Days


28th Jun 2006 - 1 comments - Add Comment - Tweet

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Hidden (Cache)

(dir. Michael Haneke)

We’re all under constant surveillance, so why not add another level to the panopticon by watching Cache/Hidden..? In the grand tradition of Rear Window, The Conversation, Blow-Up, and Lost Highway, Michael Haneke’s latest film gleefully undermines the viewer’s understanding of what s/he is looking at (and why), and its opening shot is even bolder than the slow zoom that starts The Conversation. (I do love a director’s who’s not afraid just to leave the camera running.) About halfway through the film, I was still wondering ‘Where on earth is this going?’, and I’m happy to say that the final reel provides no answers. The glorious opening shot is, moreover, outdone by an even braver closing scene, in which a fleck of sense briefly emerges from meaningless bustle, only to disappear again. Is this a film about celebrity, surveillance, the war on terror, the turmoils of family life, France’s colonial past, memory, generational conflict, guilt, film itself, or all of the above? The answer is hidden.

PS: Don’t see the film at Cardiff’s Chapter Arts Centre, though, or you’ll have to first sit through a four-minute short starring Rhys Ifans and a Mars Bar. (I’ve conveniently repressed the name of the piece, I’m afraid, but it might have been Siocled – Welsh for ‘chocolate’.) The only good thing to come out of this experience was the realization that I can now definitively answer the questions ‘What is the most annoying film ever made?’ and ‘What were the longest four minutes of your life?’


20th Feb 2006 - 1 comments - Add Comment - Tweet

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Small Holes

Apparently, people in Cardiff are the proud owners of the world's smallest holes.

Thanks to Dr. Chimp for the tip off.


Drill Here



29th Nov 2005 - Add Comment - Tweet

Dr U2

review in from last night's U2 gig in cardiff c/o Dr Chimp


30th Jun 2005 - Add Comment - Tweet


Cardiff Millennium Stadium

Dr Chimp's ears are still ringing after the U2 rockfest at Cardiff's Millennium Stadium last night. Very odd to be in a space that big, but with a roof overhead - a bit like being indoors and outdoors at the same time. U2 gave us two very loud hours of their greatest hits, plus about three-quarters of the latest album. Oddly, the songs from their very first album were played with far more energy than the newer material (apart from Vertigo, which we got twice). One guy standing near us seemed to have a 48-piece imaginary drum kit, which he gave a good thumping during Sunday, Bloody Sunday. And two other swaying dudes air-guitared themselves into a total frenzy during Bullet the Blue Sky. All in all, infinitely better than the limp Zooropa show that Dr Chimp and Chimp71 saw in Cardiff in 1993, but nowhere near the heights of the San Francisco ZooTV madness of '92. Very excited to see the convoy of U2 people carriers, under heavy police escort, racing past the grassy knoll by the castle on our way back to the car. But why does this feel like a farewell tour?

Dr Chimp

set list:
I Will Follow
Electric Co.
New Year’s Day
Beautiful Day
I Still Haven’t Found
All I Want is You
City of Blinding Lights
Miracle Drug
Sometimes You Can’t Make It On Your Own
Love and Peace
Sunday Bloody Sunday
Bullet The Blue Sky
Running to Standstill
Pride (in the name of love)
Where the Streets have no name

Zoo Station
The Fly
With or Without You

All Because of You


30th Jun 2005 - Add Comment - Tweet

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26th April @ Dempseys in Cardiff

Wednesday 27th @ Parker Place in Holborn, London with Tunng and Kid Carpet; 51 Parker St WC2 BPS. Nearest tube – Holborn, £5, Doors 7.30

Thursday 28th @ The Windmill in Brixton, London with Semi Finalists; Mugison and Semi Finalists @ The Windmill, 22 Blenheim Gardens, Brixton SW2. £3, Door 8

Friday 29th @ St Brides Centre, Edinburgh with Arab Strap

Sunday 1st May @ The Tron Theatre, Glasgow with Arab Strap

plus Mugimama, Is This Monkey Music? is out on Accidental on May 2nd. First 500 come w a bonus DVD - live footage, interview, general mugistuff





25th Apr 2005 - Add Comment - Tweet

Accidental Tour

lots of accidental live action coming up in the rest of november:

13 Stockton (Mugison live @ Georgian Theatre)
14 Manchester (Mugison live @ Retro Club)
17 London (Mugison live @ Arts Cafe, Shoreditch)
18 London (Matthew Herbert Big Band@Royal Festival Hall)
19 Cardiff (Mugison live @ Barfly)
20 Helsinki (Ultra Red live @ Avanto Festival)
28 London (Accidental label night featuring Mugison live, 8 doogymoto live, Matthew Herbert DJ, Dani Siciliano DJ, Raf Rundell DJ @ Neighbourhood)
29 Huddersfield (Mugison live @ Ultrasound Festival)


13th Nov 2003 - Add Comment - Tweet