Sunday, 30 December 2012

2012- pretty darn good year for music, and well life!


Well only 2 days left of 2012 left, so the inevitable 'end of the year' blog is here!
Music wise, I think 2012 has been a pretty decent year for music, Patti Smith released a new album 'Banga', Gaggle released their debut album 'From the Mouth of the Cave', other favourites of mine were Amanda Palmer and the Grand Theft Orchestra- Theatre is Evil, The Corin Tucker Band- Kill my Blues and Garbage- Not Your Kind of People.
here my choices of 2012 on my end of the year special here

Gigs of 2012
Wild Flag
Robots in Disguise (and this year I got to interview them too)!
Ladyfest East London
Pigtails and Army Boots the live event! (organised by me- obviously)!
Garbage
Black Belles
We Rock Like Girls Don't
Bleech
Gaggle album launch party
Patti Smith
Amanda Palmer
Trash Monroe
Lovely Eggs
Hard Rock Hell

I wrote lots more reviews, and did my first interview in person (the RID one as previously mentioned)
feminism wise, I went to Million Women Rise for the third time and London Slutwalk for the first time and finally Southend Feminist Group is running, it's only small but hopefully 2013 it will get bigger! I also tok part in a Free Pussy Riot protest near the Russian embassy and have been supporting the campaign.

Other achievements/interesting stuff from 2012:  did the Moonlight Colourthon again, started going to Pagan Moots, organised another charity gig, went to the Doctor Who Experience, helped with a beach clean up, and most importantly moved house!

I think I achieved a lot this year but in 2013, I would like to actually get paid for music journalism, to do some sort of volunteer work, to do more creative writing and finally finish editing my novel, to pass my dispensing course at work and go to even more pagan/spiritual events. I also think I should admit to my mistakes more!
How was your 2012?

Tuesday, 4 December 2012

The Women of Hard Rock Hell

Everyday I look at all the various music websites to find relevant information and bands for my show, and sometimes I'll enter competitions- if I think Miguel (my husband) or I would enjoy the prize. Earlier this year I entered a competition I think via Planet Rock to win tickets for Hard Rock Hell- a rock festival in Wales- I entered thinking of Miguel as I wasn't too familiar with the bands that had been announced on the line up but he knew he liked a few of them, as they were names I knew he had played on this radio show The Rock Experience.

Little did I know, but I actually won tickets! The prize was for 6 people, with reduced price accommodation for all the nights. It turned out to be quite difficult to get other people to take the spare tickets due to either not being interested in the bands or various other commitments. In the end I got two other people to join us, one of them a friend of mine from my local Animal Aid group who has been a few times before and was also happy to drive us up there as long as we were happy to contribute to petrol costs. We were lucky enough to only pay £100 each for the four nights on site.

I had no idea what accommodation we would get, or what it would be like, especially as my friend Maria was telling me that the accommodation on a previous year was really bad, but they had actually changed camp site from previous years. As it turned out, we were lucky enough to have a chalet as opposed to a caravan and it turned out to be pretty nice- it had heating in all the rooms, a shower, and a basic but workable kitchen- for us it was amazing as the only festivals we'd been to in the past have been camping- so this was real luxury! The site was at a Havens - the Hafan Y Mor site in North Wales. It took us forever to get there- probably about 7 hours- and the tiny roads in the mountains looked rather intimidating in the dark! It really felt like it was in the middle of nowhere. The site happened to be right near the beach, it was a short walk to a fantastic view of the sea (with Snowdonia in the backdrop)! and fields full of sheep right next to it!

the kitchen in the chalet

view of the sea and mountains

sheep!

The actual campsite was fairly large with plenty of chalets and caravans available, but it was only a short walk for us to get to the main festival location. There were two indoor stages right opposite from each other so you could easily go from one to the other. The first stage was pretty huge with just a few bars and a chippy and Burger King at the back. The second stage was also large but there was a 'metal market' in there also with loads of stalls with lots of things, like handmade jewellery  music, clothes and other bits and bobs and most of the prices were pretty reasonable too- I got some handmade earrings for £5 and also got given a African bloodstone by the lady running the stall who was a psychic wiccan. There were also more bars and just next door there was a Starbucks where they had some acoustic and signing sessions- we tried to watch one acoustic session but it was so small we couldn't get in. There was also a restaurant on site but each time we went there was no vegan food and on Sunday they didn't even have a vegetarian option. Luckily we had brought some of our own food along but we did have chips from the chip shop several times! There was also a few Spar shops so we could easily buy some groceries and basics if needed.



Anyway onto the music- from the perspective of my show this review/blog will be about the female side of the festival. I looked up all the bands before we left and made an effort to watch all the bands that I knew of which were female fronted.



Thursday night was the fancy dressed themed 'Gunslingers Ball' as we had travelled for so long we arrived quite late anyway, but there were no female fronted bands playing that day and the bands we saw were very 80's style cock rock and not very good. I was a bit worried this might mean I wouldn't enjoy the rest of the festival that much.



Friday was a different story. The first band we watched properly were Ajenda, an Irish band led by small pixie like Jen- but with an amazing rock Goddess like voice. Big riffs, melody you can dance to and a lively performance despite being on fairly early in the day.


Second female artist of the day was Dante Fox. Quite different from Ajenda, Dante Fox has more of an 80's AOR rock feel- a bit like the more commercial side of Heart. She seemed to have a few hardcore fans down the front with us but there were some hecklers- I felt like she coped well with it though- joking about being in a cold caravan, and also saying stuff like "you know I wrote these guys guitar riffs..." We got a drumstick and a copy of the setlist at the end too.


The final female fronted band and the final band of the day on Friday were Die So Fluid. Now I was vaguely familiar with the band enough to know I would like them- but watching them made me ashamed that I don't own any of their albums as I completely fell in love with their awesome slightly metal tinged hard rock and Grog's great voice. They were the absolute highlight of the weekend for me. The crowd went wild for them and it was great that was the case as they were competing with Sebastian Bach on the main stage.


Saturday we saw my second favourite of the weekend Domenica, who get an extra special shout out for having TWO girls in the band! For some reason I was expecting something along the lines of Doro- but I was totally wrong. More awesome hard rock with a tinge of grunge influence.


Second female fronted band of Saturday's line up were Spiders who are very much in the vein of 70's style rock in the same vein as Led Zeppelin. I wish I hadn't been feeling tired when they came on as their set was a bit short but really awesome and I think I could get to really like this band.


On Sunday, there was a line up change that I wasn't aware of, so sadly we only caught a small portion of the last song of The Amorettes, a Scottish all female band who sounded really great- very much like The Donnas- pure straight up rock n roll.


The final female fronted band of the weekend were Kobra and the Lotus who almost like Iron Maiden- if they had a female singer and were a bit heavier-yes they were very much metal. Funny enough they even played a cover of 'The Wicker Man'' by Iron Maiden. Even though I'm not too fond of metal myself, I found the singer incredibly likeable, she looked like she was having the best time on stage, throwing the horns right back at the crowd who loved her as much as she loved them.


There was also a performance group going around all weekend called Area 51, either on stilts with various costumes and some ladies who danced and could BREATHE FIRE!! When I saw these ladies come out in very little clothing during Bonafide, at first I thought it was all a bit rock n roll cliché but then when they started breathing fire I got a whole other level of respect for them!

Overall the festival was not as male dominated as I had expected it to be, there were rock fans of all ages and the gender divide was pretty even. The attitude was good too, there seemed to be no trouble at all and I always felt safe- even in the front row by the barrier. Some people may think it's a bit rubbish if there was no mosh pit, but for me I want to go to a gig and be able to dance without the fear of getting trod on or beaten up, everyone was having a great time dancing or head banging but it was all happy and not angry!

I suprised myself- it was the best festival I've ever been to- so well organised and friendly. All I would chane is the time of year it's on and to have vegan food available on the site. There were many other highlights like feeding the ducks in the pond, catching a Buckcherry pick and singing loudly to Ugly Kid Joe's "Everything About You" but for now I say Rock on and hopefully see you at the barrier next year Hard Rock Hell!


Majority of photos taken by Miguel :) 











Sunday, 25 November 2012

Pigtails and Army Boots returns!

Just an update to let you know Pigtails and Army Boots will be back on the air from Monday 10th December over on Firebrand Rock Radio! The show will be going out every Monday night live from 8pm UK time.
So I'm now open again for you to send your new music for airplay, and/or reviews for the blog.
I always play two independent/unsigned bands in the show, as well as an unsigned/indie band for artist of the month- if you want to be considered for the coveted artist of the month slot, you will need to send at least 4 mp3's.
I also play a cover version at the end of each show, so if you have recorded any great covers, then also please send those over!
To be considered for airplay please send your track/s to pigtailsandarmyboots@gmail.com- in MP3 format please. If you're interested in having your album/ep/gig reviewed on this blog you can contact me on the same address.
Looking forward to bringing you more exciting female fronted music!

Friday, 2 November 2012

August Gone

You may remember the awesome music of Le Monnier, who have been a previous artist of the month on Pigtails and Army Boots and also played at two of the gigs I've organised.
Sadly, the guitarist left the band, and Le Monnier are no more...

but from the ashes come an exciting new band
'AUGUST GONE' - still with Alex's amazing vocals, backed by Aaron's guitar playing and new drummer Kayli Williams adding the backbone.
The debut song is 'Watch you Bleed' a stomping rocker, a mix of 90's tinged grungy guitar with the stunning powerful vocals- I'm personally very excited to hear more and there is a promise of an album in early 2013...

You can download the song 'Watch you Bleed' from their Facebook page

Thursday, 1 November 2012

Amanda Palmer and the Grand Theft Orchestra at KOKO, 23/10/12

When I arrived at the KOKO, the queue had long since formed, having been to several AFP shows now, I recognised certain faces who have been at every gig. The usual mix of people who had glammed themselves up, people in black, glitter, goth, alternative- the lot.

Excitement kicked in when AFP arrived on stage with a bottle of wine in hand and flowers in the other, but she wasn't there to start playing she was there to introduce the first support act (I think there was another one before I arrived too). The first one I saw was the bassist of the Grand Theft Orchestra's band and he was very impressive- I think he was surprised how well the audience reacted to his brand of music which included classical arrangements. After him, we saw a friend of AFP's who was a singer (please forgive me for not knowing the names, I really should have wrote this review sooner)! and also the guitarist of Grand Theft orchestra's band who were very 80's style and had flamingos on sticks that they passed around the audience- one of which ended up with it's legs being pulled off!

AFP had been saying before introducing one of the acts that she was taking away the anticipation of her entrance by introducing all her friends, but that really wasn't the case- as the stage finally lit up to the interval piece from 'Theatre is Evil' and flowers were thrown from the stage- I didn't really realise until I caught one right in my hand! Then, as if that wasn't enough they went into 'Smile' and there was a t.v screen behind them with the photos members of the audience had submitted to the '7 photo upload' appeared very fast, and I caught two of mine flick past several times- me with Robots in Disguise, and my face framed by my hands!

The entire show was one big party- as she blasted through songs off the new album- my favourite track 'The Killing Type' got a particularly good reception. Dresden Dolls song 'Missed Me' saw the orchestra swapping instruments.

After 'Grown Man Cry' things changed pace a bit as she read audience's responses to the question 'what's something sad that's happened in your room' - some of them had a wry humour about them, most of them very emotional and you could see people were crying as she then went onto play the beautiful song 'The Bed Song'.

Next amazing moment- AFP crowdsurfing over us (well near enough so we could reach her) during 'Bottomfeeder'.
Later in the show she pulled even more surprises out of the metaphorical hat, as Scroobius Pip came out to perform his 'Letter from God to Man' - followed by an awesome cover of 'Careless Whisper' and THEN of course where there is AFP- there is almost always Neil Gaiman- and there he was singing a song called 'Psycho' with a SAW ORCHESTRA!!! The love between them (Neil and Amanda) was so clear and beautiful as he appeared on stage.

THEN- as if things couldn't get any better, RICHARD O BRIEN came out and did The Time Warp!  a very packed KOKO attempted to do the time warp, this has to be one of my favourite gig moments ever!

The final encore consisted of a very audience participation version of 'Want it Back' as AFP and soem of the members of the orchestra appeared on one of the balcony's-

this would be a much better, more informative review if I hadn't left it so long to write it- but here's some photos, videos etc which I hope will help you to envision how wonderful it was!


















Setlist:

  1. (Amanda Palmer cover)
  2. (Yazoo cover)
  3. (Wham! cover)
  4. (Leon Payne cover) (with Neil Gaiman)
  5. (From the balcony backed by the audience)

Tuesday, 30 October 2012

Goodbye ARFM

Well I've currently got a backlog of blogs here to write but I'm moving flat in just under 3 weeks so time is precious at the moment, so I'll get to them all as soon as I can.

The most important thing to blog is that Pigtails and Army Boots is currently on a break. I have now left ARFM and unfortunately the management felt it would be better to go immediately, I had been intending to do a few more shows before the break but to be honest with moving, it only makes things easier.

Don't worry Pigtails will be returning in the near future, I will update you as soon as I can but I should be back on air by December.

Thanks for all those who listened on ARFM, I hope you will join me for the next chapter!

Sunday, 14 October 2012

Caitlin Moran


I had never heard of Caitlin Moran until last year when my best friend bought me a copy of her book 'How To Be a Woman' for my birthday. I loved the book, I thought it was hilarious and I like to think even though more than anything it's about her life, that she made the ideas of feminism more accessible to people who haven't quite grasped what it's about- even my husband read it, and he never usually reads any feminist books I read.

There was some backlash about the book despite mainly positive reviews- her use of the word 'retard' in one chapter of the book and also referring to transgender people as 'trannies'. To be honest, when I read it I didn't really think of the consequences of those words- I am, like Caitlin Moran, a privileged, white, straight cis woman. It's only been in about the year or so that I've become more aware of the importance of the rights of transgender people and read more about disablist language. I've never been disablist, in fact my brother is autistic so I've seen many disabled children at the specialist school he had to go to as a child and I sometimes volunteered my time at school helping the disabled children in the school next door. I just never realised how much language could be considered disablist, I think a lot of the words are used so commonly, that most people wouldn't realise. This blog post on The F Word really helped make me more aware.

Anyway, a lot of people contacted Caitlin via Twitter to explain why these words were wrong and rather than see what they had to say, she blocked people. However, recently I read an interview where she states that the word 'retard' was a quote of her 13 year old self, and she is aware that the word is no longer acceptable- apparently she did issue an apology and the word was pulled (I can't verify this as my copy does have the word) and that she hadn't been aware of the terms 'cis' and 'trans' before as some of her friends do refer to themselves as 'trannies'. She was happy that Twitter helped educate her on this matter. (I have to admit I hadn't heard these words until this year either). I'm not sure where the blocking people comes into this but I think she came across very well in the interview which you can read here

The plot thickens though, as she recently offended more people. Caitlin was going to interview Lena Dunham, I don't know much about her apart from she is a film maker. Someone tweeted Caitlin saying
“what a surprise @caitlinmoran loves lena dunham. white feminists who ignore the experiences of WOCs have got to stick together guys!!!” (WOC is women of colour)
which I think to be honest was a bit unfair. The same person tweeted her again this time asking.
"did you address the complete and utter lack of people of colour in girls in your interview? i sure hope so!”
to which Caitlin responded, "Nope. Literally I couldn't give a shit about it."
which of course led to much uproar, understandably.

Looking through Caitlin's Twitter feed, I don't really think she meant that she 'doesn't give a shit' about women of colour or that she is racist. I personally think she just didn't think it was relevant to that particular interview, that she doesn't think Lena Dunham is racist for not including women of colour in her new t.v show and overreacted, which is very easy to do when you're feeling defensive and on the internet it's not always to be clear about what you mean. Don't get me wrong, I'm not saying that makes it okay. It definitely doesn't make it okay to block people when they try to explain why representations of WOC is important. I think she ought to make a public apology instead of trying to avoid the issue. 


I think it goes back a bit to the post I wrote not too long ago about Amanda Palmer, sometimes we hold certain people in such high regard (in Caitlin's case as a public representative of feminism) that we forget that they are human and make mistakes- or do things we don't agree with. Just because someone says or does one thing we don't agree with doesn't automatically make them no longer a good person. Of course it depends on what they did- and maybe in Caitlin Moran's case how they react to it. So let's not expect people to be perfect human beings, but Caitlin, please think about the words you type as well as the words you speak- words on the internet are there to be seen by millions of people all over the world. You may know what you mean and that you didn't mean it the way people are reading it, but unless you own up and say "I'm sorry- I didn't know that word could be used in an offensive way" or "I'm sorry that you took it this way- but I meant it this way..." then all you do is creating yourself a reputation I'm sure you'd rather not have. It's okay to admit when you don't know about something and it's okay to make mistakes- but acknowledge them.


Sunday, 23 September 2012

Slutwalk 2012


Last year, I really wanted to attend Slutwalk London, but unfortunely  due to them changing the inital date, I couldn't go as it clashed with my Ladyfest Essex event which I had been planning for months on end, I did however help them get a band to perform at the event.

I was happy when I heard they would be doing another march this year and this time there was nothing to stop me!
Slutwalk was all started because of a comment from a Canadian policeman saying "women should avoid dressing like sluts in order not to be victimized."
This, quite rightly, sparked off the first 'Slutwalk' in Toronto, which then spread like wildfire as women globally got angry, and Slutwalk events started happening all over the world.

The main reason I choose to support Slutwalks, is because I agree with why it was started in the first place- the victim should never be to blame for the rape, no matter what she might have been wearing at the time. Some women have also decided to embrace the Slutwalk as they want to reclaim the word 'slut' and turn it into something positive. I have no problem with any woman that wants to embrace this word, but I am not personally interested in doing that myself. I think it's a real shame though that some feminists have decided not to support Slutwalk, mainly for this reason. I got into a discussion with someone who was adamant that Slutwalk only panders to what men want- for women to be disposable sexual objects. Yes, some women at the march choose to write 'slut' on themselves (quite similar to Kathleen Hanna back in her Bikini Kill days) or decide to march in short skirts, or even in their underwear- but it's because they're making a point- they're saying "this body is mine, I can wear what I want, without the fear of being raped".

Yesterday the march gathered nearby Hyde Park Corner, before setting off from the top of Picadilly before finishing with a rally at Trafalgar Square. The march was probably the most diverse crowd I've seen at a feminist minded protest, they were many women, but also men, as well as transgender people, queer groups, men's groups, political groups, mothers with children, people with bikes, people with dogs (one with a sign saying "I'm here for the bitches") people dressed in their underwear, people dressed in their everyday clothes, people with masks, people with handmade banners and so much more. My favourite of the banners had 'Buffy wouldn't stand for this shit' but other great ones had 'Sluts and plebs of the world unite', 'I love my cunt', 'Todd Akin is a legitimate asshole' and 'How to prevent rape 1.don't rape, 2.see #1'
The crowd was lively with drumming, dancing and lots of chanting- "It's a dress, not a yes" "Wherever we go, yes means yes and no means no" and more.

I didn't stay for the whole rally but I saw Anastasia Richardson, the founder of Slutwalk London, who is very inspiring - she's only about 19 years old, but has done an amazing job organising the events. I also saw Subi from Cambridge based group 'Those Pesky Dames' who I recently discovered thanks to the Cherry Healey 'How to get a life' programme- they make loads of great feminist videos so go check them out here.
Subi spoke of her experience as a rape survivor, it was disappointing but not surprising to hear about how she had been treated by the police who told her "it could have been worse you know...it could have been gang rape..."

Slutwalk London currently have a petition to get more protection for rape survivors and for more prosecutions for rapists- if you haven't already you should really sign it.

Sunday, 16 September 2012

Patti Smith at The Troxy 13th Sept 2012

It seemed like the tickets for this gig had been sitting on my dining room table forever, probably because Patti Smith is one of my favourite artists all time, not only because of her amazing songs, but her way with lyrics, words, poetry and also her tireless activism for anti war issues too, I long to be able to write with the beauty that she does. Anyway, needless to say, I was excited for this gig, so the week leading it up to it dragged along slowly.

I really wanted to be as close to the front as possible, so we made it to the venue as early as we could, and joined the back of the queue, a mixed crowd of all ages- some fans that had probably seen Patti Smith back in the seventies and newer fans maybe introduced to her music by her recent album 'Banga'.

Luckily I knew that she didn't have a support act from talking to others that had been to other dates on the tour, so we found our place in the second row, and waited for about two hours while the only entertainment was an endless stream of reggae music, you could feel the impatience growing all around us as we waited for our idol to emerge.

The tension was finally broken when the band arrived on stage around 9pm, the drumkit surrounded by red roses and the opening notes of 'Dancing Barefoot' played. Immediately you could see how genuinely happy and excited Patti was to be playing to us, she smiled continually and waved at the audience as she sang, like an excited child full of innocence. When she finished the song to say hello, she commented that the energy from the audience was so amazing it was making all her blood go 'zing!'

The gig turned out to be the best I've ever seen. There was no fancy light show, or special effects, but the beauty of her music was enough. They played a fantastic mix of classics like 'Free Money', 'Because The Night', 'Pissing in the River' and tracks off Banga, including 'This is the Girl' (dedicated to Amy Winehouse and 'Fuji San'

The interaction with the audience and what she had to say also made the gig. Patti made a fantastic speech about the right to pray as we choose, in a clear reference to Pussy Riot, made references to taking acids, watching for UFO's and playing at CBGB's. At one point, the guitarist played one of his own songs, and his played, she came down from the stage and shook everyone's hands at the front of the stage.

As if the show hadn't been amazing enough, the encore was still to come, which started off with Patti putting a plaster on her finger saying 'You might have won round one, but I'm ready for round two!" before launching into 'Banga' complete with barking and howling from all band members, followed swiftly with a rousing version of 'People have the Power' which warped into 'Gloria' (even though that had been played at the end of the main set- to probably the biggest audience reaction as we all sang unified) and an extended version of 'Rock N Roll Nigger' complete with Patti pulling all her guitar strings off and throwing petals from the flowers by the drumkit at the audience.

A gig that will surely go down in musical history....

setlist-
  

Sunday, 2 September 2012

No more syndicated show

Just a brief update on the show. As you are probably aware the show used to have two versions- the 2 hour show that was syndicated across several stations, and the live 1 hour on ARFM. well since I have now moved to a better time slot on ARFM as well as expanding to 2 hours- (Thursdays 9pm UK Time) I have decided to no longer do the syndicated version and focus my energy on the ARFM show. Partly because I just don't have the time for 2 two hour shows and also I want to make the ARFM show the best it can be, the show is always more enjoyable live. I am grateful to all the stations that took the show over the years, but now is the time for a change. I will still be uploading the show to both my own mixcloud and the ARFM Mixcloud- both links can be found on the side of this blog.
In the mean time, here is last Thursday's show- enjoy!

Sunday, 19 August 2012

Free Pussy Riot





I thought it was about time I blogged about a campaign I feel quite strongly about, and also kind of a way of informing others on the campaign as despite the news coverage I'm still finding people who don't have a clue what I'm going on about.

Who the Hell are Pussy Riot and why do we need to free them?
Pussy Riot are an all female political feminist punk band from Russia- their catchphrase is "We are all Pussy Riot" so they all don brightly coloured balaclava's for anonymity- as well as not using their real names- this is all part of their catchphrase- we don't need to know their names or what their faces look like because "we are all pussy riot". The band perform provocative songs in unusual locations- like on the top of a bus for example- and then the videos go up on Youtube to spread their political message around the world.

Back in February, four of the members performed an Anti Putin (Russian president Vladimir Putin) song in Moscow's Cathedral of Christ the Saviour. The performance was stopped after 30 seconds by police officials- here's the video of the performance



here are the English lyrics to the song they sang:
St. Maria, Virgin, Drive away Putin
Drive away! Drive away Putin!
(end chorus)

Black robe, golden epaulettes
All parishioners are crawling and bowing
The ghost of freedom is in heaven
Gay pride sent to Siberia in chains

The head of the KGB is their chief saint
Leads protesters to prison under escort
In order not to offend the Holy
Women have to give birth and to love

Holy shit, shit, Lord's shit!
Holy shit, shit, Lord's shit!

(Chorus)
St. Maria, Virgin, become a feminist
Become a feminist, Become a feminist
(end chorus)

Church praises the rotten dictators
The cross-bearer procession of black limousines
In school you are going to meet with a teacher-preacher
Go to class - bring him money!

Patriarch Gundyaev believes in Putin
Bitch, you better believed in God
Belt of the Virgin is no substitute for mass-meetings
In protest of our Ever-Virgin Mary!

(Chorus)
St. Maria, Virgin, Drive away Putin
Drive away! Drive away Putin!
(end chorus)

A few weeks later after the footage appeared on the internet - three members were arrested for hooliganism. The women have been in prison since then (March) and the trial only began in late July with it coming to it's climax last Friday- they were found guilty and sentenced to two years each. The women are-  Maria Vladimirovna Alyokhina- who is only 24 and is a student and a mother,  30 year old Yekaterina Stanislavovna Samutsevich who is a computer programmer and 22 year old Nadezhda Andreyevna Tolokonnikova who is also a student, and is married with a four year old daughter. Maria is also a vegan and reportedly collapsed from starvation due to not being given vegan food.

The women have had a lot of support from all over the world from such celebrities as Madonna, Bjork, Kate Nash and even Paul McCartney. On the day of the trial there were protest actions all over the world including in London, Barcelona, Lisbon, New York, Paris, Moscow itself and many, many more.

I was lucky enough that I was able to join in with the London action near the Russian Embassy. There were people of all ages and gender gathered, many with balaclavas or masks, and many bright colours.

Whilst I was there, I was lucky enough to be interviewed by my favourite journalist feminist activist Laurie Penny- and in her published article I'm quoted in the very first line! The article is here and you can spot me in one of the photos too!

Pussy Riot are an inspiration as they aren't afraid to speak their minds even in a country which seems to regard freedom of speech as an act of crime. The women have been arrested for singing and dancing for 30 seconds in a nutshell- where's the justice in that?

There is a petition you can sign here - you can also find a link on that page to download Peaches 'Free Pussy Riot' song. Here's the video to it- 



and finally you can buy an awesome 'Free Pussy Riot' t shirt from this site, and the profits go to the free pussy riot cause

here's me modelling mine!
The main site for news, updates and information is here

Sunday, 5 August 2012

Riot Grrrrl Sunday Service no.2

Have some modern day riot grrrl to brighten your day!

I totally love this right now:






FREE PUSSY RIOT!!!


Sunday, 29 July 2012

Time to Change!

Big News Announcement!
After over a year and a half of doing an 1 hour live slot on ARFM on a Sunday lunchtime, the show is now moving to Thursday nights at 9pm (UK time) and will also be expanding to TWO hours!
The show will now be straight after new presenter Juliet Harris's show Indie Wonderland, the shows will complement each other nicely- I highly recommend her show- it's great!
The first Thursday show will be this week- the 2nd August so hope to see you there :)

Monday, 16 July 2012

This Week's Show

sorry for the delay, Mixcloud hasn't been working!


Sunday, 1 July 2012

Album review: Dana Jade

Dana Jade is a former member of alternative female choir Gaggle, who has decided to break away from the pack and become a lone wolf with the release of her own self titled rocking debut album which was released at the end of May and has already been gaining many positive reviews.

I'm only going to add to the positive reviews- as I'm also really enjoying the album. If you're looking for a solo version of Gaggle, this isn't it. (let's face it, would that really be possible)?! Dana's style is much more rock based with soaring guitar, and vocals virtually dripping with attitude.

This is proper grrrl rock n' roll which isn't shy- this is full on- an album that should be played at full blast. From the catchy singles 'Little Sister' and 'Eyes of Cinder'  to my personal favourite song, the musical equivalent of an arguement (in a good way)! 'She or I Go'

You can buy the album from Dana's Bandcamp found right here

These are the videos to the singles in case you need any more convincing:


Sunday, 24 June 2012

Bleech Album Launch Show at The Borderline, 22nd June 2012


 (Top photo: Jen of Bleech, Bottom photo: Drag Your Heels)

After recently writing reviews of their recent single 'Adrenaline Junkie' and also their debut album 'Nude' recently, I managed to get myself into their album launch party at London's Borderline venue on Friday. I've seen them once before a few years back at the Pink Festival when the band were known as Slummin Angels and even then I thought they were great, and they've developed so much more since then.

I hadn't been to The Borderline and was quite surprised how small it was, but it is a lovely venue with two bars, places to sit, (where you could watch the bands on a TV screen if you wanted to) as well as a nicely lit stage and dance floor.

The first support act were Drag Your Heels. The band are a female fronted three piece based in London who say they are inspired by blues, girl groups and punk. Their singer Lucy, reminded me a lot of Stevie Nicks, although their music doesn't remind me of Fleetwood Mac! They had a fantastic full sound, rock n roll infused with blues and catchy chorus's- I dare you to have a listen to the song 'How It's Meant to Be' and not tap your feet! In fact, I dare you to not be moved in some way by any of their songs.

The second support act I didn't watch properly so straight on to Bleech!
They came onto the sound of her majesty herself introducing them over the speakers as they happened to release the album on the Queen's Diamond Jubilee. * To a packed out venue, they blistered their way through the majority of 'Nude' including 'Break My Nose',  the slower track 'Flowerhands' and an extended version of 'Dancing Without You' before ending it with my personal favourite (and most other people's it seemed by the crowd's reaction) the ever so catchy 'Monday's.'

They talked a little between the songs, joking that the audience was just their mates and talking about releasing the album their selves and encouraging us to enjoy ourselves.  There was no need- with music as fresh and exciting as theirs is, it was inevitable. If you get the chance- buy the album and see them live it'll be well worth it!