wears the trousers magazine


kazik, katy & the kommander’s car: (ii) mr piechowski lives
November 10, 2009, 10:57 pm
Filed under: feature, special | Tags: ,

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If you missed the first instalment of this four-part series yesterday, do catch up. It won’t make much sense otherwise, y’know? In today’s blog, Katy Carr describes the chain of events that led her to travel to Poland to meet Kazimierz Piechowski, the only remaining survivor of the 1942 Auschwitz breakout in the Kommander’s car.

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thea gilmore: strange communion (2009)
November 10, 2009, 8:43 am
Filed under: album, review | Tags: ,

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Thea Gilmore
Strange Communion •••
Fruitcake / Fullfill

Is absolutely nothing sacred? As each year passes it feels increasingly as though there is nobody out there who is totally immune from making a Christmas album. But while we inwardly quake at the thought of what mind-blowing aberrations 2010 might bring (Björk’s Baubles? Deck The Halls With PJ Harvey?), we must first digest this year’s two most unpredictable entries, which just happen to lend themselves to obvious comparison. Having long been touted as a British female Dylan, it’s a particularly wry twist of fate that Thea Gilmore releases her version of a festive album within a few weeks of her songwriting icon’s first seasonal foray, Christmas In The Heart. But while the majority of Dylan’s attempt comes across as a somewhat gauche and overly sentimental throwback to a bygone era, much of Gilmore’s sounds a lot like, well, pretty much anything from her last two albums.

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el perro del mar: love is not pop (2009)
November 10, 2009, 8:42 am
Filed under: album, review | Tags: ,

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El Perro Del Mar
Love Is Not Pop •••½
The Control Group

Love is not pop, Sarah Assbring proclaims, and neither is this, the most recent offering from her alter ego El Perro Del Mar. Listen to it though and you could be forgiven for thinking otherwise; the album is replete with sharp hooks, bittersweet melodies, memorable choruses and soaring key changes. However, such traditional pop tropes are threaded through a web of complex, despondent songs to create a thematically sorrowful album that touches on the uncomfortable issues of loneliness, relationship trauma and the inability to form meaningful bonds. Love is clearly some distance away from easy-breezy singalongs to Assbring, and her voice betrays such a genuinely troubled and dejected nature that the ensemble is lent an authenticity lacking in many of her contemporaries.

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