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Monday, 25 July 2011

Events - The Wicked Whispers recruit Captain Beefheart's Magic Band for their upcoming Winter annual club night spectacular in Liverpool!



Liverpool’s The Wicked Whispers have pulled a lot out of the bag during their first year. Besides doing two UK tours, releasing their debut EP on limited 10” vinyl (now goldust!), playing a series of festivals and building a loyal following leading up to their Liverpool and London EP launch shows this summer the band also put on their own event called ‘The Butterfly’s Ball And The Grasshopper’s Feast’ at The Static Gallery in their hometown of Liverpool.

The night was their first official show and drew a large amount of attention. It was the official unveiling for The Wicked Whispers with the addition of special guests dressed up inside a very elaborate evening of ’60s West Coast inspired pyschedelia. Taking to the stage The Crazy World Of Arthur Brown gave a legendary performance along with aa hand picked selection of local talent in support from El Toro and Eve Petersen (Ex - The Little Flames). Will Sergeant (Echo & The Bunnymen) was on DJ duties whilst visual delights were provided by Howard Be Thy Name (artist, performer and projectionist). The evening was compared by BBC introducing’s Dave Monks topping off a sell out success and offering something a little different to Liverpool’s gig goers.

Almost 12 months on, the band are planning another event and have put together something really special indeed.

This years line-up includes:

THE MAGIC BAND
THE WICKED WHISPERS
THE LUCID DREAM

VISUAL LIGHTSHOW : TOWYN ROBERTS (THE GRATEFUL DEAD/SHACK/THE CORAL)
DJ : PYSCHEDELIC SOUNDS FROM EDGAR ‘SUMMERTYME’ JONES (THE STAIRS/THE JONES’S/FREE PEACE)
COMPARE : DAVE MONKS (BBC INTRODUCING)

Tickets are £17.50 and go on sale MONDAY 1ST AUGUST 2011 VIA www.tickline.com






Saturday, 16 July 2011

Competition - Win two tickets to The High Voltage Festival and see Caravan and many other prog and rock bands

To win two passes to see Caravan, John Lees' Barclay James Harvest, Curved Air and numerous other rock and prog acts including Electric Wizard in East London's finest Victorian park please answer the following question:

What, according to the lyrics of the song, was the name of Caravan's Golf Girl, and what was Pye Hastings wearing when he met her?

Please enter "WIN HIGH VOLTAGE" in subject line and email win@shindig-magazine.com.

Entries drawn on Thursday July 21st.

Thursday, 7 July 2011

Live Review - The Len Price 3, St Moritz, London

THE LEN PRICE 3

The Club For Losers, St. Moritz Club London July 01st

I find myself here in the early hours amongst the alcoves of the legendary afterhours drinking club, The St. Moritz. There aren’t many bands that would rouse me to travel up to the big city for a gig due to start at a time when I would normally be tucked up in bed, but The Len Price 3 are certainly one of them.

It’s like a scene from '60s cult TV show The Prisoner, hallucinogenic psychedelic lights play across the band as they take the stage resplendent in colourful striped boating blazers. Then it’s, bam, straight into two new songs 'Words Won’t Come”'and 'Frustration'. Opening with two unrecorded numbers might be a risky strategy for many bands, but it’s testament to The Len Price 3’s song writing that half way through each one you find yourself singing along to the choruses as though they were old favourites.

Up next is 'You Tell Lies' one of the stand-out tracks on latest album Pictures, the superb harmonies and backing vocals of drummer Neil Fromow fix the chorus in your brain for days to come. 'Rentacrowd', up next, could be the band’s signature track with it’s’ tales of life in the Medway Delta, excluded from the trendy London scene. It is a classic, with Glenn Page’s slashing guitar chords and more of those impossibly catchy harmonies.

I’m right at the front crammed between the PA speakers and band, so close that I’m almost decapitated by Steve Huggins’ bass as he swings it, lost in the moment. There’s such an energy and joyfulness, smiles are everywhere, especially after the double hit of 'With Your Love' and 'If I Ain’t Got You'. The jaunty new single 'Mr Grey' leads into a fantastic run of tracks that culminates in Glenn joining the audience for a cover of 'Comanche'.

Two enthusiastically received encores of 'Amsterdam' and 'Christian In The Desert' from the debut album end things on a high and then, all too soon, it’s over. I’m left with the dawning realisation that I’m already desperate for my next fix of The Len Price 3.

Steve Worrall





Wednesday, 6 July 2011

Events - London '60s Week

London '60s Week is London’s only celebration of the decade which rocketed the capital to the forefront of music, fashion, film & design, and coined the phrase “Swinging London”. This year it will run from the 22 – 31 July.

Supporters of London '60s Week make this possible by getting back to the basics and creating their own grass roots happenings. We are a non-profit organisation and no one gets paid. People get involved because they are passionate about the '60s and celebrating its legacy with London’s new generation of bands, designers and fashion leaders.

The '60s was the decade when the youth successfully forged change. For the first time the youth of the day achieved freedom to play the music they wanted and break free from a class system which had total control over all the creative industries.

London 60s Week is the only celebration which acknowledges the power of generations to forge change. We tip our hats to those pioneers of the 60s and give the stage to the creative force of today’s new bands, designers & thinkers.

Things to watch out for during this year’s London '60s week include: Duffy “ A visual record of photographic genius” at The Idea Generation Gallery; John’s Children live at The Barfly; Alfred Hitchcock’s 1963 classic The Birds” screening at The BFI Southbank; Roger Daltrey live at Indigo; Supreme Summer at the The Geffrye Museum in Shoreditch; 20th Century Icons Exhibition at Proud, Chelsea ; The Drifters live at Fairfield Halls; Back In The day '60s Walk; '60s Shake’N’ at The Garage, Islington and as always we end with The Eel Pie All Stars live at The Barmy Arms on Sunday July 31st, drawing the best vintage scooters and sharpest dressed mods.

All London '60s Week partners pledge there support to affordable groovy fun. In short all happenings are free or at reduced entry prices, as we honour the work of the '60s generation in smashing down the class barrier and allowing creativity to flourish.

Live Review - Denis Coffey, Xoyo, London


DENNIS COFFEY

XOYO, Old Street, London, June 27th 2011

BLOODY STAGE TIMES. The man on phone say 9, the man on the door he say 9 30: splitting the difference to 9 15, my friend and I still manage to arrive ten minutes late. Yet while this would normally bother me, tonight I’m unshakeable, as simply being in the same room as Dennis Coffey is blessing enough.

Additionally, the first three songs witnessed – the thrusting ‘Don’t Knock My Love’, the timeless ‘I Bet You’ and the slinky ‘Easin’ In’ all feature the powerful lungs of Kendra Morris, who I expected to be good but not this good: after all, modern soul singers can be a mixed bag, and you wouldn’t want anyone “urban” on stage ruining the authenticity. Thankfully all three chosen by Coffey tonight bear the stamp of genuine taste, passion, and naturally, funk, with Alice Russell’s sexualised tones on the jubilant ‘It’s A Shame’ and ‘Friendship Trains’ sounding more like the product of New Orleans or Memphis than her native London, and Mayer Hawthorne’s sweet yet raucous delivery (notably on ‘All Your Goodies Are Gone’, which he sang on Coffey’s new album) bringing to mind no less a blue eyed master than Hamish Stuart himself, even if his haircut and specs do give the impression of someone who works in a bank and listens to Phil Collins.

But lest we forget, this gig isn’t actually about vocalists: true, all three make an impression, particularly Morris, who returns later clad only in boots and underwear, but we’re here to see one man – the original Funk Brother, the man whose squalling, fuzz-drenched, wah-festooned riffs and solos graced half the most influential Motown records ever made, who practically defined the guitar sound of the instrumental Blaxploitation soundtrack, and who, alongside David Axelrod and Alan Parsons, helped point hitherto aimless danceDJ samplists in the direction of proper music. Thus the highpoints, for me, anyway, are those very instrumentals- a spiralling ‘Black Belt Jones’ with Coffey’s cascading flurries reaching heights only touched by a select few, a practical masterclass in chuckawucka with ‘It’s Your Thing’ and, of course, ‘Scorpio’ – with over half the audience overcome by riffs and rhythm, making one glad the show was downsized from the seated setting of The Barbican.

Admittedly, the Haggis Horns aside, Coffey’s sidemen look very much like they’ve come straight from “rent-a-muso”, but their playing is faultless, and by the time the gang wind up with ‘Cloud Nine’, all three singers at full tilt, and an unexpected (unrehearsed?) encore of ‘Son Of Scorpio’(proving conclusively that one more Coffey never hurt anyone), the atmosphere is, to quote noted mod DJ Lady Michele, “funkier than a box of chickens”. How a box of chickens can be funky, or indeed, what true funk is, is, of course, something Dennis Coffey clearly knows better than most… I wonder if he passed the secret on to me when he shook my hand?

Darius Drewe Shimon

Friday, 1 July 2011

Features - East To West: The making of Wooden Shijps new album


San Francisco residents WOODEN SHIJPS are set to release their third studio album West and to mark the occasion Happening's GRAHAME BENT got on the transatlantic blower to hear about the thinking that has shaped this latest chapter in the band's evolution with Shjips' stickman Omar Ahsanuddin.

"We had been playing some of the songs on West while touring last year so we a had a good sense of what the record would be before going in to the studio. West isn't really a concept album but the idea of the west, its history, the myths and the symbolism is present in all of our music. We're all originally from the east and the middle of the US so I think it has a more symbolic meaning for us having moved west for that promised freedom and the title pays tribute to that."

What is beyond interpretation is the hard fact that West represents something of a major break with Wooden Shjips previous established working practices given that for the first time the band chose to locate themselves in a bona fide recording studio and work with a bona fide recording engineer in the shape of Phil Manley (Trans Am, Edie Sedgwick, The Fucking Champs, Oneida, Jonas Reinhardt et al) having previously opted for a much lower key and more home grown approach on their earlier releases.

"Our self-titled debut album, Dos and the material on the singles collections were self-recorded in our rehearsal room. So, after a couple of years and a lot of tape, we were ready to try a new approach but what was unknown to us was how we would sound working in a proper studio with an engineer rather than recording ourselves. Working in a studio allowed the band to capture a fuller sound, we had access to quality microphones and gear as well as recording in a room that sounded much better than our own rehearsal studio. The main difference, though, was having Phil Manley engineer the session. Not only did it free the band from thinking about and executing the technical details of recording but Phil added a valued and knowledgeable opinion to the process."

Throughout their lifetime as a working band Wooden Shjips have found themselves attracting numerous comparisons with an extensive checklist of Anglo American and even Krautrock sources and influences so it seems only appropriate that one of the guiding lights behind one of the band's most oft cited points of reference - the hallowed Spacemen 3 should have been invited to contribute to the album by having Sonic Boom take care of the mastering.
"It was great to have Sonic master the record. Last year Wooden Shjips opened for Spectrum in San Francisco and we also played a couple of songs with Pete while he was playing a solo show in Louisville. So, in addition to the fact that he’s recorded a lot amazing music himself, he knows our what our musical sensibilities are and what we sound like live which, while intangible, added to his perspective as he approached the mastering."

But when the dust finally settles on the new album and a degree of perspective is allowed to settle in where ultimately where will the new improved sonics of West be seen to sit within the evolving discography of Wooden Shjips to date ?
'To anyone familiar with other Wooden Shjips recordings West will stand out instantly from a sonic perspective. I also think partnering with Thrill Jockey for this album gives it a different feel as well. Dos sounds a lot different from the self-titled album and West sounds a lot different from them both. With this record it feels like we're just starting to tap into our potential in the studio and we'd like to continue to explore that in the future. '

West will be released on Thrill Jockey in August

Events - It's Happening Again... Shindig! July Club Night

Shindig!'s very own new-band-supporting/old-record-playing monthly party, the cleverly-entitled Happening, welcomes three top acts to the stage on Saturday July 2nd. For your small fee you get live sets from new Acid Jazz compilation stars The Sonic Jewels (left), Welsh dream pop wonders Colorama (right) and new kid on the block Teta Mona. Then scene darlings Phil Istine and Charlie Salvidge, with some help from guest LadyFantasy Tina, will play plenty of mind-bending ’60s records for you to cut some rug too. The party starts at 8pm and continues on til the frankly ungodly hour of 4am.

The Drop, below The Three Crowns, 175 Stoke Newington High Street, London, N16 0LH.
Arrive early to guarantee entry and to sample all of the earthly delights on offer.

Events - The Wicked Whispers... come to London

NO OTHER and SWEET BUT DEADLY PROMOTIONS in association with ELECTONE RECORDS proudly present...

The Dark Delights of The Wicked Whispers EP Launch Feat:

* THE WICKED WHISPERS * THE KEYS (SEE MONKEY DO MONKEY RECORDS) * BARRY SUTTON (EX THE LA'S) DJ : PHIL ISTINE (Happening)

--------------------------------
Tuesday 5th July 2011
The Alley Cat Club
4 Denmark Street
LONDON WC2H 8LP
7.30pm

--------------------------------

NO OTHER and SWEET BUT DEADLY PROMOTIONS in association with ELECTONE RECORDS bring you the EP launch of Liverpool's most hotly-tipped psyche outfit The Wicked Whispers In London. The band release their eagerly anticipated debut EP on the back of their biggest shows to date. This very special EP launch will feature The Wicked Whispers plus special guests THE KEYS (on Electone Records Favourite Label 'See Monkey Do Monkey') and Ex The LA'S guitarist and legend Barry Sutton. As an added bonus DJ Phil Istine will be spinning all the finest garage & psychedelic 45's! There will also be a limited number of EPs available on the night!

All for a mere £5 on the door!!!

Record Reviews - July 2011

DC FONTANA
Meshkalina EP
DCTone Records
www.dcfont
ana.com
Tamworth's eight piece retro style collective DC Fontana inventively bridge the gap between the release of their debut long player Six Against Eight and its upcoming sequel La Contessa with the vibey five track multi media Meshkalina EP. With production once again handled by Donald Ross Skinner content-wise the EP offers a little bit of everything - namely, the previously unreleased title track plus G Corp's Afro Dub remix of the same, another new title 'It Don't Worry Me' plus an advance taster of what's to come on the second album via a new instrumental recording of the title track with an accompanying remix by Lack Of Afro. Purely musical attractions apart, the enhanced disc also includes the complete eight and a half minute short film Six Against Eight shot in Portmeirion and themed around iconic '60s cult TV spectacular The Prisoner which was originally created as a vehicle to promote the band's debut album.
Grahame Bent

FRUIT BATS
Tri
pper
Sub Pop
Yet another band with elements of psych, folk/country-rock and ’70s AM radio that feature a singer with a distinct tenor. If Blitzen Trapper perhaps do this kind of thing with more dynamics and adventure (and on the same label) , Eric D. Johnson and his collective forge some agreeable melodies and sounds on Tripper, their fifth album. The songs reek of hip American indieness, destined for an appearance on the soundtrack of the next Jason Reitman film. ‘Tangie & Ray’ echoes the winey vocal style of Jagger cira ‘Miss You’, and indeed it has something of the wasted mid-70s storyteller vibe about it too. ‘Shivering Faun’ could have sat on The Beau Brummel’s Triangle, whilst the subtle coffee house finger picking heard on ‘The Banishment Song’ soon gives way to an epic vocal and some laid back musical interludes.
Jon ‘Mojo’ Mills


GIORGIO TUMA
In The Morning We'll Meet

Elefant
On this, his third LP, Italian songwriter, singer and instrumentalist Tuma creates a dappled, multi-layered world of sound that manages to be simultaneously innocent and knowing, rapturous and reflective, nostalgic and yet utterly contemporary. There are traces of Tim Hollier's melancholic baroque chamber pop here, hints of The High Llamas, maybe even a sniff of early Sufjan Stevens, yet the whole record is so lush and lovely and unique that a hunt for antecedents seems almost blasphemous. The 16 pieces here feel more like sketches than songs, and bleed into each other in ever-darkening hues. The pace never quickens beyond the majestically slow; orchestras swoon; horns swell; guitars reverb into the purpling dusk. The man himself has stated that his goal with this record was "to describe the concept of innocence: childhood memories, dreams, the start and finish of an important love story, the sensation of hearing Pet Sounds while sitting in a room on December the 24th with only the Christmas tree lights on.” Happysad indeed.
Hugh Dellar

HOUDINI DAX
You Belong To Dax Darling
See Monkey Do Monkey
From the rousing “Bye bye social butterfly” chorus on ‘Magician’, the opening cut on this Cardiff quartet’s debut album, it’s clear that these teenagers are not fly-on-the-wall observers. Youthful enthusiasm is the order of the day as they rampage through 10 barnstormers full of shout-along choruses, thumping Bo Diddley beats (‘Robin You Lie’), Buzzcockian power-punk (‘Green Gate’, ‘The Trend’), pogotastic heartpounders (‘Tank Man’), and Iggy & The Stooges insanity (‘You’re A Ghoul’). Knobtwiddler Richie Hayes’ (singer in labelmates, The Method) wind ’em up, turn ’em loose, let ’em RAWK philosophy keeps things moving with an authentically minimalist, back-of-the-garage production that is sometimes TOO sparse, occasionally making the band sound like they’re recording out in the studio parking lot. But this often works in their favour, capturing an unbridled exuberance that’s missing from many of today’s over-hyped flavours of the week. Houdini Dax are the real deal.
Jeff Penczak

IMPLODES
Black Earth

Kranky
Riding perilously through Death Valley in a battalion of dune buggies, Chicago’s Implodes manage to conjure up visions of windswept sand banks under the night sky on their impressive debut album. Texturally rich and sonically beautiful, the band take the reins of the popular drone format and unleash it at pertinent moments, only to send it soaring to the outer regions of our solar system. Elements of soundtracks, Krautrock and experimental giants Flying Saucer Attack collide in a cinematic montage of ever changing soundscapes. This record has a tendency to open itself up after repeated listens, constantly shape shifting through fuzz laden teleportation methods. From setting the scene with ‘Open The Door’ to the harder sounds of ‘Marker’, this is a joyous trip. They conjure up the solar wind on ‘Wendy’ then let it settle into dust on the moon’s surface thus ending majestically with ‘Hands On The Rail’.
Eric Colin Redibelberger

NORTH SEA RADIO ORCHESTRA
I a moon

The Household Mark CD
www.nsro.co.uk

North Sea Radio Orchestra announce that on this, their third album, they have moved to "a darker, less pastoral sound" than on previous releases. Really? You wouldn’t necessarily know it.
Influenced by forces as bafflingly disparate as The Cardiacs, Benjamin Britten and The Incredible String Band, this fluid, 20-strong collective, formed around London-based composer and guitarist Craig Fortnam, continue to pursue a barmy blend of olde English chamber music, folk and modern classical. It’s often steeped in a prog-like Romanticism and overlaid with woodwind and string arrangements… along with the occasional synth.If that sounds heavy going, it’s not. Stand out tracks include the pretty opener ‘Morpheus Miracle Maker’ on which Fortnam’s wife Sharron (the group’s main vocalist) sounds enticingly like a fresh-faced Kate Bush; the ethereal, multi-harmonied ‘Ring Moonlets’; and instrumental ‘Berlinder Luft’. The latter is supposedly their homage to Krautrock - though, inevitably, it conjures up images of a mad professor using real instruments to have a stab at electronica, and getting it deliciously wrong.
Chris Twomey


THE STEPKIDS
The Stepkids
Stones Throw
You know you’re in for something special as soon as the first few bars of ‘Brain Ninja’ takes hold. This trio of young American songwriters, players and singers not only have the ability, but also the wherewithal, to mix up The Mothers Of Invention with Superfly and to make it sound new, valid, exciting… and theirs. From there on the standard is set. This is a band beyond and behind fashion, whose talent and chops allow them to embrace whatever musical quirk, high note or out-there moment they see fit. The Stepkids are the real deal. ‘Shadow On My Behalf’ somehow joins Shuggie Otis and The Free Design at the hip… a shimmering psychedelic, vocal harmony laced, breezy, experimental funk/pop masterpiece. And yes, these guys talk about psych a lot, often mentioning Steely Dan and Funkadelic. But there’s much more to them – more than they even know. Honed from the period when black guys dropped acid and borrowed from whitey hippies and when long haired white dudes were getting hip to soul and funk, debut album The Stepkids is a bona fide success. Recalling what Charles Stepney did for Rotary Connection ‘La La’ has that perfect blend of vocals and studio wizz production. ‘Wonderfox’ is a delirious mélange of strings, a taut bass line, beats and high octave vocals which when the harpsichord kicks in careens from blacksploitation into Abbey Road psychedelia.
With soul at their heart and psychedelia in their soul, The Stepkids are one of the most happening bands out there now. Period.
Jon ‘Mojo’ Mills

VARIOUS ARTISTS
Space Escapade
Elefant

Space age bachelor pad music for the discerning lover of international pop, this 44-track, 2xCD sampler of unreleased (or forthcoming) tracks, rare singles, and key album cuts illustrates why Elefant is one of the world’s premier indie labels. In addition to selections from the Spanish pop scene they helped nurture, there’s a virtual United Nations of pop on tap via artists from the UK, US, Sweden, Argentina, Italy, Japan, and China! While the majority of tracks will appeal to us lovers of sugary, femme-voxed cuddly pop (Anna & The Spectors, My Little Airport, Papa Topo, et.al.), there’s enough bouncy electro-dance (La Casa Azul, Single, Bla), bubblegum punk (Helen Love, Sucrette), powerpop (Speedmarket Avenue, Camera Obscura), Spectoresque Motown (The Carrots, The School), bossa nova (Modular), and swinging ’60s cinematic confections (Giogio Tuma, Ibon Errazkin) to please every taste. Recommended to everyone who shares Helen Love’s sentiment in the set’s most self-referential track, ‘I Love Indie Pop’.
Jeff Penczak

WHITE DENIM
D

Downtown
Austin’s White Denim come on strong on the opener ‘It’s Him’, sounding like an amped up Moby Grape; making that particular mammal swim again. Combining elements of psychedelia, rural-rock, prog chops and even touching on some jam band elements without fully succumbing to them. This record is highly original and refreshingly complex, yet friendly to the ear; the band being capable of executing rapid passages with precision that are punctuated by blasts of sonic continuity. Forceful, and complex would be just a few of the adjectives used to describe such barnburners like ‘Back At The Farm’, ‘Drug’ and ‘Anvil Everything’. Holding firmly in the #1 spot is ‘Burnished’, which in its 2:36 duration slithers wildly in it’s off kilter rhythmic flights and dangerous reptilian guitar lines.
I hear everything from Spirit, Neil Young, Frank Zappa, Grateful Dead and maybe even The Hampton Grease Band in the musical stew. Tasty indeed!
Eric Colin Reidelberger

WOODEN SHJIPS
West
Thrill Jockey

The prevalent trend in psych bands nowadays seems to be the drone heavy stylings of The Velvet Underground and Spacemen 3; San Francisco’s Wooden Shjips are no exception. Whilst I have no beef with above mentioned bands, more often than not, I feel that this particular musical avenue has a tendency at times to sound downright unimaginative. While not being a bad record by any stretch, the band is either unwilling or unable to get the vehicle out of first and take those drones somewhere special on West. The opening track ‘Black Smoke Rise’ establishes itself with enough grinding fuzz to make it on those merits alone and the catchy ‘Home’ is an excellent song that seems intent on pulling its feet out of the concrete. Fans of the mighty Spacemen will undoubtedly get on board, but for me there just wasn’t enough under the hood.
Eric Colin Reidelberger

Style - Forest Elf... Biba, Pastoral Patterns and Nature

Yvonne McKeown goes down to the woods to meet Em

Happening:
Who and what is Forest Elf?

F
orest Elf:
Forest Elf is me! It’s a nickname I have had and thought it would be a great and unique name to use for my textiles and vintage business. I started off making home accessories like cushions. I love bold colourful prints and putting different ones, including vintage fabric together. I will be soon selling vintage clothing and my own line of vintage style clothing.

H: You love strong textile patterns like Ossie Clark – was he an influence from the start?

FE: He is definitely one of many influences yes. I am very much inspired by bold ’60s and ’70s prints. I also love art deco and nouveau which were also influences in the ’60s.

H: Who is your all time ’60s fashion icon? Why?

FE: That’s a hard one. I don’t really have one. I would say my two favourite designers were Barbara Hulanicki and Ossie Clark. There were so many beautiful and well dressed women in the ’60s. Jean Shrimpton and Brigitte Bardot being two of my favourite.

H: How has ’60s fashion influenced your boutique?

FE: Boutiques are very much a ’60s thing – it’s where it started. The late ’60s was all about colour, psychedelia and flower power. I would say I am a hippy at heart and am hugely into nature – my other passion being wildlife photography.

H: When did you discover you had a talent for textiles and an eye for a vintage wonder?

FE: I started collecting vintage clothing about 10 years ago. Mainly ’60s stuff. I got involved in the ’60s scene and loved it! I felt it was where I really belonged and would say I was born at the wrong time. Since I was a little girl I loved dressing up and loved going to fancy dress parties and making my own outfits. I was such a perfectionist as a child and had to colour coordinate everything I wore.

H: What is the concept of your new Boutique? How was it born?

FE: I have always wanted a boutique. I never thought I’d get one though with a lot being online now and thought it was so sad that so many lovely little independent shops were disappearing. It’s a dream come true to be having one. I live in a very unique and quirky place and am lucky for this shop space to have come up. It means I can expand and do what I love most and that’s vintage clothing. The boutique will be my workshop too. I want it to be the sort of place someone can come in and hang out if they wanted too. Make them a cupa tea and chat.

H: You're a breast cancer survivor, how did overcoming that give you the determination and motivation to follow your dreams and start Forest Elf?

FE: For about the last 10 years I had been very unsettled. I never really had the confidence to go and do what I really wanted to do. Having cancer was a kick up the arse for me. It was a bad time but I got some really positive stuff out of it. I started a fashion and costume design course when I finished my treatment and after making all my family and friends their Xmas presents they said I’d be mad not to start something up. This really motivated me to start the boutique and I’m so happy I did. I think life’s too short to be unhappy. I’m not money motivated and would rather love what I do, and not earn big bucks, than the other way round.

H: Where would you like to see yourself and Forest Elf in the coming years?

FE: I would love Forest Elf to be at lots of festivals and also for the boutique to expand. I love what Barbara Hulanicki did with Biba when she expanded. I’ve always wanted a vintage shop with a little hang out area where people could sit and drink and listen to vinyl.

Forest Elf Site

THE BOUTIQUE
Location:
Stable yard.
Main street
Cotesbach
Luuterworth
Leicestershire
LE17 4HX

Hours:
Mon - Fri: 10.30AM - 5PM
Sat: 10AM - 5PM
Sun: Closed

Competition - Win a Forest Elf Magic Mushroom Bunting


Look at this handmade fabric Magic Mushroom Bunting. Isn't it lovely? It really is the perfect household adornment for that earthy, hippie vibe. Pure Finger Mouse, Bagpuss and the sort of thing we imagine Robin Williamson would go ga ga for.

To win please answer this simple question:
"Name the two girls who joined Robin and Mike in The Incredible String Band."

Please enter "WIN FOREST ELF" in your subject line and email win@shindig-magazine.com

Closing date: July 31st

Film - Don't Look Now


The canals of Venice. That red coat. The "real(?)" sex scene. Donald Sutherland and Julie Christie. Nic Roeg's 1973 masterpiece Don't Look Now has never looked better than on Optimum's brand new digital transfer for blu-ray.

Grief, third sight and premonitions all play out in a hallucinogenic account of a middle class couple's escape from the tragic drowning of their little girl in a supposed work/break in the mysterious realms of Venice. A stay in a hotel with an apparently clairvoyant (and very creepy) blind woman, and her protective sister, does little to console the pent up mourning wife, Laura Baxter (Julie Christie), as husband John (Donald Sutherland) throws himself into his church ceiling restoration job whilst becoming fixated that his daughter is still alive, and running around the catacomb-like ancient narrow streets and sideways of the damp, haunted city. "Nothing is what it seems," he says. And he's right.

If Performance, The Man Who Fell To Earth and Walkabout are visionary, Roeg's very cinematic adaptation of the Daphe Du Maurier short is certainly his most realised. Conveyed equally by Tony Richmond's cinematography, Pino Donnaggio's score and Graeme Clifford's imaginative editing (especially the sex scene), Don't Look Now is guaranteed to sadden, scare and amaze. The cheap thrill The Exorcist was made the same year, but Roeg's cinematic vision, rather than throwing buckets of blood and vomit at the screen, heightens the senses. There’s no need for a 360 degree revolving head, crucifix masturbation and blasphemous pubescents here – and the shocks, when they come, are far more disturbing.

Not only is this one of the best British horror films (it if can classified as such), it is also one of the very best British films ever. The red coat and final sequence having become ingrained in the memories of all who have seen it, and paid homage to in so many later pieces (Submarine for one).

Extras on the blu-ray include Danny Boyle's compressed version of Don't Look Now and a slew of interviews with the creative force behind the original. Jon 'Mojo' Mills

Competition - Win Don't Look Now on Blu-ray



To win a copy of the incredible 1973 Nic Roeg film Don't Look Now answer this simple question.

"What is Christine Baxter carrying in her hand as she walks towards the pond?"

Email: win@shindig-magazine.com

Please enter "WIN DON'T LOOK NOW" in the email subject line.

Closing date: July 31st