Dennis Da Silva is a busy, busy man. If he’s not DJing, he’s filming. If you want to enjoy some excellent short films, then maybe you should read on a bit more about his SHORTz project and what he’s doing with ArtHertz, which he founded. Josh Jones asked him some questions.
Hey Dennis, how are you this very day?
Very good, have been in a viewing of more submissions of short films since 8 AM with SHORTz co-programmer Tom. The coffee’s kicked in and the heating is on the Honolulu setting as I’m craving a holiday somewhere hot.
You may remember a few months back we got all excited about the EP launch night of brand new singer/producer WALL. She’s the first signing to the excellent Black Cab Records. Well since then, things have gone pretty crazy for her and everyone wants her to play at their party. Josh Jones managed to ask her a few questions before she jumps with both feet into a crazy busy 2013.
Hey WALL, how’s it going? What are you up to?
Hello. Right now I’m sitting in bed with two cats vying for my attention. One looks like a seal and the other, a tiny monkey. But other than that, we’re rehearsing a lot and working on new tracks. We have a busy few months ahead, so we’re keeping it real.
Jack Robinson is a very busy man. Not content with founding Outlook and Dimensions Festivals and running the likes of Reggae Roast, Subdub and Vagabondz, this year sees the launch of his newest festival – Horizon, a dance fest in Bulgaria. Josh Jones managed to catch a few minutes with him between meetings and Excel charts.
Hey Jack, how are things? Did you have a nice Christmas and New Year. It all feels a bit faraway now doesn’t it?
I actually spent Christmas in Bansko, Bulgaria trying to learn how to snowboard as I have skied up until now. Therefore I spent most of the trip on my ass but it was good fun. We then had a big NYE event in London, which we’d been working towards for a while and which went really well. Now I’m focused on 2013 and Horizon Festival, as well as my other business ventures.
Is your brain a jumble of spreadsheets, band names and festival wristbands from now until the end of summer?
Short answer yes – I’m working on three major festivals over the next year as well as stages at a few others, plus I’ve got over 50 club nights to consider. However, I love my job.
What happens to buildings when their owners stop using them? Two photographers explore the use and misuse of space in an exhibition at the 491 — a gallery facing eviction. Words: Vyvian Raoul
Waste of Space is an exhibition by Adrian Nettleship and Lisa Furness. We asked them about the project, the themes it explores and the significance of Leytonstone.
Is the exhibition a reaction to the recent criminalisation of squatting?
Adrian: I put the Occupy and Explore project together when the change in the law was still in the balance. It seemed that there was a huge amount of misinformation about the subject. When you looked into it, it was clear that the situations that motivated people to support a change in the law were already clear cut. It was always illegal to invade someone else’s home, but this was being omitted from the discussion. So now, in a time of huge public sector cuts and a lack of affordable housing, our taxes are being spent on criminalising people to protect the owners of empty properties. I don’t believe the change in the law will benefit the majority, and the way in which it was changed was thoroughly disingenuous with regards to democracy. I feel that these are matters that must be discussed.
Lisa: I spent several years living in Bristol photographing abandoned and derelict buildings and looking at the effect of time and neglect upon man-made structures. The tragic story of waste told by these buildings led me towards the squatting scene, which provides an alternative future for them and a more hopeful narrative. This exhibition is the natural result of my first forays into squatting culture and the recent change in the law just made it more important to show this work publicly.
As it’s Christmas, we thought we’d get all traditional and go and check out some of the hottest rubber wear in the city. Josh Jones doused himself in talc and slid into something more comfortable to have a chat with the MEAT Babes.
MEAT Babes. Please can you introduce yourselves?
B: I’m Bo, and she’s Alis, and we are the MEAT babes/masterminds behind the MEAT brand.
How did the whole MEAT thing come about?
B: We were both going out to clubs and fetish nights and found a love for latex, but nothing on the market really offered anything that was in our own styles, it was all just cliché fetish, which wasn’t our thing. So I started making us outfits, which we started to get a lot of love for. Nicola Formechetti picked up on what was being created and commissioned a piece for Azealia Banks to wear in Elle magazine, and from then on we thought we were on to something clever. Alis was already working as a photographer/videographer, so meant we could really create a whole brand/concept completely between ourselves, whilst bringing in the relative creatives that we felt suited each collection.
Foo D is set loose in Hyper Japan. It’s almost too much fun
Despite being a massive nerd, I’d never been to a convention until Hyper Japan came to Earl’s Court last weekend. Knowing that I was supposed to be covering the event for le cool and that there was a bunch of stuff to see, it might have been a good idea to put together some sort of a plan before I arrived, but that would be very unlike me.
To be fair, even if I had, I’m fairly sure I would have been immediately distracted by the smell of tasty fried Japanese foods and the computer game stations that seemed to be calling my name. It was all a bit overwhelming, so I decided to dull my over-stimulated senses with beer. Which, upon reflection, was a good move.
Nick Hussey, along with partner Emmalou, are the people behind Vulpine – purveyors of some of the swankiest cycle wear on the London roads. You might also recall we featured their Vulpine Fete in last week’s le cool. Josh Jones had a chat with Nick about what they’re all about.
Hello Nick, How are things with you today. According to your website you’re expecting a baby. Congratulations, will you have it in time for Xmas?
Today is a lovely day. The sun is shining, I went for a ride, had fish & chips (fish good, chips too crunchy) and Lily (the Jack Russell I obsess about) is lying on my feet. How about you? Yes, we have a boy (first child) due on the 8th of January and Emmalou is MAHOOSIVE in a ladylike way, so he could be on his way sooner! Hopefully not by crimbo though. This year has been berserk. Hell, we’re already running around like loons, what difference is a kid going to make? *small weep*
Not only for radical leftists – Strike! is an attractive magazine with graphic contributions from names including Ralph Steadman and Peter Kennard and polemic from commentators who wish to inspire action. The publication is out now, available online or from stockists Art Words, Housmans and Flaxon Ptootch. Vyvian Raoul is co-founder with Rowan Powell
Tell us about the first issue of Strike!, and about its contributors.
We were hugely inspired by 60s counter-culture newspaper the International Times – our first edition actually features its founder, John ‘Hoppy’ Hopkins. We want to reignite that same spirit of rebellion, set pulses racing again — we have the same twinkle in our eye. At first we positioned ourselves somewhere between Private Eye and Occupy, but we ended up much closer to Occupy in the end. Different, though. We stand out from other leftist rags by being both readable and desirable: our guiding principles were to be popular without being populist and to make every page as pretty as possible. We asked people to submit something along the fairly loose theme of ‘f*cked’ (’cause everything is), and were incredibly lucky to get back some amazing graphics and illustrations from the likes of Ralph Steadman, Peter Kennard and Laura Oldfield Ford, which we put together with politics and polemic from David Orrell, Nina Power, Mark Fisher and Lindsey German.
Probably my favourite page, however, is from Dead Philosophers in Heaven — probably because it features Angela Merkel being crushed with a big fucking rock. Gets me every time.
Goose are back in town: a group who, for their album launch released a magazine featuring interviews with their friends and peers including Soulwax, (Dior designer) Raf Simons and (Pink Floyd sleeve artist) Storm Thorgerson. John Power caught up with them and has a giveaway for their gig on Saturday. Read on…
Two years on from their last UK appearance supporting fellow Belgians Soulwax at Brixton Academy, electro/rock band Goose are back playing live in the capital this weekend and this time they arrive with a new hit album in tow. Ahead of their gig at The Nest on Saturday we caught up with the band to find out what has been happening since they last visited these shores.
What’s changed in Goose’s world since you were last over here?
It’s the same same but different. We are still the same band but we are on tour with a new album and we are happily working on several new projects.
After we recorded [new album] Control Control Control we were so amazed with the energy you capture when you are recording all together in one room that we decided to take it one step further: record every song again in a live music video, a live performance in an empty television studio. So far we have recorded four tracks of the album like that, but we plan to capture the rest of the album as a live music video performance.
Dré Masso is one of the guys behind, and in charge of the drinks at, China Town’s newest secret bar – Opium Cocktail and Dim Sum Parlour. Hidden behind a jade door on Gerard Street in China Town, Josh Jones and Tom Medwell were lucky enough to go and meet him before it opened for a chat about what it’s all about, the drinks you’ll get, the tea they’ll serve and fill up on some of the most delicious dim sum in the city – seriously, try the turnip in puff pastry or pork and scallops, they’ll blow your mind.
Is this going to be one of them members bars?
No it isn’t. We had thought about it being a members bar. I would like it to function in a similar way to a members bar. We want to encourage people to book, whether it’s just for drinks or dim sum. We’re serious about the way we serve people and the hospitality side of the business.