Archive for November, 2011

Friendly Fires Brixton Academy

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Much anticipated gig as Friendly Fires first album really hit a chord and was my album of 2009.

We stood just in front of the sound desk and had a great view. Sadly though the sound quality was not great and I think they must have cranked the bass to 11 as a flat wall of noise was projected throughout most of the set.

They tried to be funky but were just not tight enough. The guitarist seemed all over the place for a couple of songs mid-way through the set.

Their energy couldn’t be faulted and the crowd seemed happy to dance along.

The visuals worked well especially when a slow-mo animated parrot with it’s vibrant colours and graceful movement was displayed. It went brilliantly with the track.

Overall an ok gig with some good highlites.

Building the Revolution: Soviet Art and Architecture 1915-1935

Vist to Building the Revolution: Soviet Art and Architecture 1915-1935 exhibition at the Royal Academy London

http://www.royalacademy.org.uk/exhibitions/building-the-revolution/

After catching the communist architecture bug from a recent trip to Berlin I visited the Royal Academy’s Soviet architecture exhibition which focuses on the pre-Stalin period of 1915-35.

Firstly I was a bit shocked at the £9 entry fee and felt pretty bad for Liz’s sister who was along for the day. I feel a tad annoyed also to have to pay so much money to see a socialism exhibit.

Anyway, once we were in the gallery the photographs of the buildings were large and beautifuly shot. Some were accompanied with original designs and artworks that had influenced. The buildings were grouped into sections such as industry and leisure.

I’m sure it would have been a tough life back then but I felt a kind of optimism and excitement when looking at the exhibit. The grand ideas, the social plans and the will really came through.

Cosmic Communist Architecture

I first saw this book at a gallery shop in Berlin and it just looked so cool. A lot of the buildings in this book are from the last couple of decades of the Soviet Empire when maybe things just got a bit more relaxed in their design.

Most of the buildings look amazing and make you wonder how they existed in such a rigid society.
Many are huge concrete structures, but to me don’t feel brutal, like most European social buildings.

The photography in this book is fantastic and brings out the awe inspiring scales and locations brilliantly.