Tough Love

Friday, March 25, 2005

Blasphemy . . . Blasforyou

It’s Good Friday and as we’re Godless heathen swine over here at Tough Love Towers we can’t let this one pass us by without a sly dig. So here are some little known facts about the Christian calendar’s most self-important festival.

1. The curse “Jesus H Christ” comes from the fact that Jesus looked a bit like H from Steps.
2. We all have our own Cross to bear, but did you know you can get folding ones now from Black’s Outdoor?
3. Jesus entered Jerusalem on a donkey on Palm Sunday. Little did he know, the donkey had a lucrative sideline making adult videos for the Babylonian market.
4. At the Last Supper, Jesus broke bread and drank wine. And drank wine. And drank wine. It’s a little known fact that when he said “Do this in memory of me”, he was actually stealing a traffic cone from the Temple Mount.
5. Judas betrayed Jesus for 30 pieces of silver. If he’d gone to a Cash Converter he could have got a Playstation 2 as well.

We’re off to burn in Hell now. Enjoy your fish supper and see you in the flames!

Wednesday, March 02, 2005


Shouldn’t you all be out buying this?

Wind In the Wires by Patrick Wolf

We know we’ve posted about Patrick before, but make no apologies for doing so again, as he’s one of the most exciting musicians working the UK and Europe today.

Wind In The Wires is Patrick’s second album, the successor to the 2003 underground sensation Lycanthropy, and it’s utterly marvellous.

Nominally part of the folktronic (what an awful tag – thank you, Mr NME) movement that’s brought us the likes of Bright Eyes and Sondre Lerche, Patrick is in the vanguard of redefining what we think of as popular music. His work seeks to unify the musicianship of the traditional folk artist with the sophistication of modern classical composition and pop hooks. It’s no surprise in that case that he cites artists as various as Stockhausen and Kate Bush among his influences.

But just in case that all sounded a bit too worthy, read on for something a little simpler.

Basically, Wind In The Wires is a folk-pop record written by a laptop wielding genius. It opens with The Libertine, a nagging stab at living in the mediocrity that attends living in an over-legislated, under-imaginative world. It also, in the shape of the lines: -

“And all our heroes lack any conviction.
They shout through the bars of cliche and addiction.”

Buries any comparison with scag-twat Pete Doherty which the choice of song title may have otherwise inspired.

From hereon in, the album continues on a journey which is by turns both dark and uplifting. Songs such as Teignmouth, This Weather and the title track evoke the Cornish landscape Patrick lived in while writing the album. Seething with nature imagery, they are beautifully overlaid with his trademark simple yet somehow lush viola and ukulele arrangements.

In an added bonus, This Weather also has the honour of being the only song we’ve ever heard which pays tribute to the sonorous, semi-poetic pleasure of Radio 4’s Shipping Forecast. How esoteric – and marvellous.

Elsewhere, songs such as The Gypsy King and The Railway House act as a counterfoil to those casting nature as an inscrutable beast. Essentially pastorals, they speak of an imagined life in the country in the nearest the album gets to straightforward folk.

The last third of Wind In The Wires – billed as a ‘Ghost’ section – takes it into harder territory. Tristan, its most direct answer to Lycanthropy’s drum’n’bass influenced Bloodbeat, may well prove to be a dancefloor filler in 2005’s more forward thinking indie discos. Meanwhile, Eulogy, Patrick’s tribute to his late grandmother, and closer Land’s End take us on through to the end of an exhilarating journey.

So, for those few of you who’ve actually managed to negotiate through to the end of this drivel, why should you buy this album? Here are a few good reasons.

1. Talents like Patrick Wolf’s are rare and precious. We have too few Kate Bushes, Bjorks and Rufus Wainwrights and they need your support to continue recording. Man cannot produce music by illegal download alone.

2. It’s a brilliant, beautiful, important album. Why should you not want to own that?

3. If he does get big, he will do so very quickly. Get in at the ground floor – it makes you look cooler.

We should just add here that we’re so excited about seeing him at the end of this month that we may wet ourselves.

Right, that’s us done. Normal service (ie blogging about slightly camp nonsense) will resume shortly.

Tuesday, March 01, 2005

I've seen a Gay-r-age

Now that we have your attention...

This one’s our little homage to fellow Manchester-based bummers the Rubbish Gays.

A new phenomenon, recently observed and defined by a friend of ours over at Tough Love Towers.

Gay-r-age: (noun – abstract) A creepy sensation. Usually triggered by seeing someone with vaguely recognisable features on the street / in a bar / whatever. You then spend the next few minutes trying to work out who they are and how you know them before realising . . .

. . . You don’t know them at all. But you do remember their picture from their gaydar profile.

Ah, the post-modern world of fleeting liaisons and connections, woven together by the magic of the world wide web.

Or a load of sex-crazed slappers hawking their arses like they were close to the sell-by date meat. Take your pick.

Personally, we’re off to join manjam. We hear the totty’s better.

*Dusts off digital camera*

Toodle pip for now.