Tuesday, 29 October 2013

The Playlist: Lorde



I reckon if Lana Del Rey and I Blame Coco made musical babies together, they would sound a lot like Lorde. The New Zealand-born singer's Royals from the debut album, Pure Heroine, is currently sitting at the top spot in the UK singles chart and has already reached number one in both New Zealand and the US.

At the tender age of 16 the singer-songwriter muses on growing up, the excesses of lavish living and breaking glass in her 10-track record. There's quite a bit of teenage angst in there, and it may be a little derivative, but she is undoubtedly a bright star on the rise.

'Don't you think that it's boring how people talk? / Making smart with their words again, well I'm bored / Because I'm doing this for the thrill of it, killin' it' – Lorde, Tennis Court

Lorde has a cool edge and a fresh voice against the generic dance tracks filling the chart. I am enjoying having the sound of this brand new album cutting through the dark evenings. Give it a listen.

Lorde | Photo: promotional/Garth Badger





Visit: lorde.co.nz




Wednesday, 23 October 2013

OAE: The Night Shift, The Hatchet Inn

Violin at The Night Shift | Photo: promotional/OAE




Tuesday evening was one of those impenetrably dark, wind-and-rain affairs that takes strong will power to step out into. Nevertheless, I did step out. And I tumbled down the hill to the oldest pub in Bristol, The Hatchet Inn, which has been licensed to serve alcohol since 1606.

The pub's age made it rather appropriate for the staging of chamber music in an informal atmosphere. As part of The Night Shift, a project that aims to bring classical music to new audiences and break down formalities and pre-conceptions of the concert hall tradition, members of the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment gave us a 'set list' full of Haydn string quartet movements, as well as the treat of a beautiful new work by composer Satoko Doi-Luck.

The project has gathered a strong following in London and is now branching out to different locations across the country.

It was nice to be able to sit back, slouch slightly in our chairs, occasionally fidget and clink our glasses against heavy wooden table tops as Haydn's complex fugues and rich harmonies reached our ears. The OAE is certainly achieving a wonderfully informal and much more interactive atmosphere with their Night Shift concerts, even if the audience didn't stray that far from the usual concert hall crowd on the Bristol leg of the tour. A very pleasant evening.

Members of the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment play The Night Shift | Photo: Joe Plommer




The Night Shift Pub Tour: The story so far from OAE on Vimeo.

Visit: oae.co.uk/thenightshift •V

Monday, 21 October 2013

Make Sundays Special, Bristol

Bristol has recently been declared the 'best city to live in the UK'. And more and more I find myself falling in love with this bohemian dream of a place. 

Take this Sunday for instance. It was Make Sundays Special in the centre of town. The main street into the Old City closes to vehicles, armchairs are plonked on street corners, children are invited to get creative in the pedestrianised spaces and eccentric street entertainment is in its element; out in full force.

This Sunday I watched a man juggle fire, saw a polar bear boogying to Herbie Hancock's jazz standard Chameleon and bathed in the happy atmosphere of people keeping their Sunday sacred with good friends, good food, some music and the fresh air.

When Bristol hosted its first Make Sundays Special, it was the first ever British city to ban traffic from the city centre. This is a special place. And once again I find myself feeling lucky to be part of it all.

Photo: Rosie Pentreath

Photo: Rosie Pentreath

Photo: Rosie Pentreath 
Photo: Rosie Pentreath 
Photo: Rosie Pentreath

Photo: Rosie Pentreath 
Photo: Rosie Pentreath

 Photo: Rosie Pentreath

Photo: Rosie Pentreath 
Photo: Rosie Pentreath 
Photo: Rosie Pentreath

Photo: Rosie Pentreath 
Photo: Rosie Pentreath

Photo: Rosie Pentreath

Photo: Rosie Pentreath 
Photo: Rosie Pentreath

Photo: Rosie Pentreath

Photo: Rosie Pentreath 
Photo: Rosie Pentreath 
Photo: Rosie Pentreath

Photo: Rosie Pentreath 
Photo: Rosie Pentreath

Photo: Rosie Pentreath

Photo: Rosie Pentreath

Photo: Rosie Pentreath

Photo: Rosie Pentreath

Photo: Rosie Pentreath

Photo: Rosie Pentreath

Photo: Rosie Pentreath

Photo: Rosie Pentreath

Photo: Rosie Pentreath

Photo: Rosie Pentreath





The next Make Sundays Special takes place in 2014. Visit: bristol.gov.uk



Thursday, 17 October 2013

The Playlist: Portishead

Of course.

One of the coolest bands to come out of the 90s, Portishead formed in Bristol the year that I was born (that in itself makes me feel close to them) and I can't stop listening to their three studio albums lately. The electronic trip hop taps into my favourite kind of dirty sound, and I am obsessed with Beth Gibbons' high-pitched and fragile vocals.

The band are famously averse to press coverage, but have never failed to sell plenty of records. And in 2003, 'Dummy' was was selected to sit among Rolling Stone magazine's 500 Greatest Albums of All Time. Portishead and Third are brilliant too.

As for the individual songs, Machine Gun is beautiful rasping noise coupled with pure delicate vocals; Undenied breaks my heart and Glory Box is just an icon.

Portishead, Primavera Sound 2008 | Photo: Alterna2






Visit: portishead.co.uk




Monday, 14 October 2013

Bath in Autumn

On Saturday I spent the afternoon strolling around Bath with some friends. The weather was just gorgeous – a perfectly small amount of chill in the air, but with sunshine in plentiful supply for protection. 

We walked beside the river and then wandered in and out of the Georgian architecture, taking in the odd charity shop and a pub lunch for sustenance. We enjoyed it whilst it lasted, all the time knowing that the rain would shortly descend and fall over our little corner of south west England for the rest of the autumn.

I slung my Pentax over my arm and took a few snaps. I love the colours that autumn gives us: deeper and less brash than the summer somehow. And Bath is just glorious under a calm sun.

We waited for him to fly; he would not fly | Photo: Rosie Pentreath



The willows wept | Photo: Rosie Pentreath

Banksy's apprentice? | Photo: Rosie Pentreath

Bath's Georgian architecture in the sunlight | Photo: Rosie Pentreath

The tight-roping violinist | Photo: Rosie Pentreath 
Photo: Rosie Pentreath
Take a bow | Photo: Rosie Pentreath


Photo: Rosie Pentreath
The hanging gardens | Photo: Rosie Pentreath

Photo: Rosie Pentreath 
Photo: Rosie Pentreath

Daisey captures a moment | Photo: Rosie Pentreath

Photo: Rosie Pentreath
Photo: Rosie Pentreath

The Old Cinema | Photo: Rosie Pentreath 
Photo: Rosie Pentreath

Photo: Rosie Pentreath

Photo: Rosie Pentreath

Photo: Rosie Pentreath

The spoons virtuoso | Photo: Rosie Pentreath 
'The cool kid' | Photo: Rosie Pentreath

Photo: Rosie Pentreath 
The Singer | Photo: Rosie Pentreath

The Pump Room, Bath | Photo: Rosie Pentreath

Sunlight on the cathedral | Photo: Rosie Pentreath

Daisey | Photo: Rosie Pentreath

Photo: Rosie Pentreath
Sacrament | Photo: Rosie Pentreath

Bath in Autumn | Photo: Rosie Pentreath



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More of my photography can be seen HERE.