A slow week for album releases, but we won't resort to reviewing the The Spongebob Square Pants Movie soundtrack for you. (Although we will resort to mentioning it to justify putting up a picture in an effort to appeal to our kiddie/parent demographic.)
Speaking of cartoons (you'll have to stick with us on this one), EMI released a press release today with the thrilling title: EMI Revises Its Expectations For Current Financial Year. The news for EMI shareholders ain't good, as the revision is downwards. Why are we bothering to tell you this? Well, firstly, it's a remarkable press release because it hasn't blamed the likes of BitTorrent and Limewire for EMI's financial woes. Instead, it points the finger of blame at Coldplay and Gorillaz (told you we'd get to the cartoon link in the end). "Two major albums, one by Coldplay and one by Gorillaz, originally scheduled for this financial year [up to 31st March 2005] will now be released in the first half of the next financial year [i.e. before October 2005]." So, in a nutshell, it's Coldplay and Gorillaz' fault for not releasing their albums in the right financial year. Bean-counters hate uncertainty, and they really hate creativity that takes time to gestate.
Another band signed to EMI (via Heavenly), The Magic Numbers, played what should have been a triumphant gig in the intimate Bush Hall. After some time cooped up in the studio finishing off their eagerly-awaited album, this was a chance for The Magic Numbers to add to their growing list of storming gigs. Unfortunately the night was marred by a small but incredibly vocal contingent near the front of the crowd who evidently felt that the PA system wasn't good enough and decided to 'help' the band by singing more loudly than them, to the annoyance of everyone around them. This was one of those times it was better to be at the back of a gig than at the front, given the destructive and disruptive nature of The Moronic Numbskulls' moshing and drunken caterwauling.
The Magic Numbers' reputation has been built on word-of-mouth as they played brilliant gig after brilliant gig last year, but last Friday's performance might as well not have happened for many people at the front. A real shame: Bush Hall should have been a classic gig remembered by the privileged few who made it there. Instead, it will be remembered by many as an incredibly frustrating and stress-inducing night.
One of the support acts last Friday, Brinkman, did their cause no harm with a short but sweet set. There's nothing very complicated about Brinkman and there's no pretensions about them. A straightforward four-piece set-up who play straightforward indie guitar pop, at their best their songs recalled the likes of the Evan Dando and Lemonheads at their poppiest, although a couple of songs veered worryingly close to the McFly end of the spectrum. Brinkman show great promise though and we'll endeavour to keep an eye on their progress for you.
We're always on the lookout for new and unsung London bands, so if you're in a band or you know of one that deserves our attention, get in touch with us. We may take a while to get round to you, but we do read every e-mail so please bear with us if we don't get back to you straight away.