Thursday, 19 February 2009

Helen Of Troy... Makes A Stand

We’ve been busy bees of late, what with our new monthly residency at the Underachievers Wednesday Sessions, as well as talking about the possibility of taking HOTDCD further afield later on this year – we’ll let you know more when we do!

In addition to this, we're pleased to announce that we'll be involved in Reclaim The Night North this Saturday - taking to the streets to reclaim them from gender-based violence, and hosting a special Helen Of Troy... event at Club Academy.

All info for the march and for the club event is listed below, courtesy of The Riveters- The UMSU Women's Rights Group.

On Saturday the 21st of February we will take to the streets to reclaim them from gender-based violence.

Start at the University of Manchester Students' Union at 7.30pm and march to reclaim our spaces.

Rally and performers will follow in the Academy, speakers include: English Collective of Prostitutes, Women Asylum Seekers Together, NUS LGBT Campaign and Feminist Fightback.

Performers include: Aileen Quinn, Vanessa Fay - Friendly Feminist Poet, Steph Pike - Feminist Performance Poet, The Spokes - Female Bicycle Dance Troupe, and Helen of Troy will put on a club night to celebrate RECLAIMING.

The event is open to all genders.

Together we can reclaim our spaces and say no to Violence Against Women.

See you there!

Sunday, 15 February 2009

What Helen Of Troy... Has Learnt This Week

1. We've really missed the Yeah Yeah Yeahs.

While the last few years have been filled with myriad musical treats, few artists have come along who combine style and substance as effortlessly as Karen O and co. It was with great pleasure and excitement, then, that we learnt the new Yeah Yeah Yeahs album, It's Blitz!, is scheduled for release on April 13th, with the album's first single, Zero, available for download/purchase on April 6th. It's been three years since the trio released the magnificent Show Your Bones, so we're chomping at the bit to hear their latest long player. Woot.

2. A woman performing at The Grammys on her due date should be treated as more than just a glorified backing singer.

When Helen Of Troy... heard that M.I.A. was still going to perform at the Grammys, despite being ready to drop-sprog that very day, we fell even more in love with our favourite innovative agitator. Unfortunately, while we were hoping to see Ms Arulpragasam perform Paper Planes in all it's world-beating glory, what we actually got was M.I.A. performing for seconds before she was joined onstage by Kanye West, Jay-Z, T.I. and Lil Wayne. While Maya was her usual awesome self, and more than held her own amongst these hip-hop heavyweights, we couldn't help but feel a little short-changed. Have a little look at the video below and let us know what y'all think.

M.I.A. Grammy Performance

3. Some collaborations are just too wei

Aguilera's 2008 come-back Keeps Gettin' Better was vastly overshadowed by Britney's Womanizer, while her new look was criticized for being a bit too similar to Lady GaGa. It seems XTina is taking no chances with her next project, as she's enlisted the help of Goldfrapp, Sia Furler and Ladytron. Yep that's right, Ladytron! An inspired choice or a desperate grab at underground cool? Only time will tell.

4. That which we call a rose. By any other name would smell as sweet. Santogold has changed her name to Santigold. Fact.

Tuesday, 10 February 2009

Helen Of Troy... Please Try Harder

Well dear readers, the time has come for Helen Of Troy... to shapeshift yet again as we start our new residency at Underachievers Wednesday Sessions tomorrow night. We've got a cracking line-up for our inaugural event.

First up is the lovely Clare Helen, who combines intricate fretwork and honeyed vocals to tell tear-stained tales of 21st-century life.

After a dose of beautiful
acoustica, we'll jump to the other side of the musical spectrum with space-age pop trio Suki And The Science. This three-piece produce ethereal digi-pop guaranteed to get you dancing.

Before, between and after these live gems, the Helen Of Troy... DJs will be playing their usual selection of lovely lady music, with Grace Jones, Le Tigre, Brazilian Girls, thecocknbullkid and Carly Simon all scheduled for a spin.

We may have our first event ready to rock, but we're still on the look out for bands/musicians/filmmakers and artists to appear at future events. Drop us an email at if you have any ideas.

We're well excited about our Underachievers collaboration and hope y'all can make it down. The fun starts tomorrow (Weds 11th Feb) at 9pm and goes on til 1.30am, Saki Bar,
Rusholme. It's free in, so there's no excuse.

Wednesdays are the new Fridays don't you know!

Saturday, 7 February 2009

New Music: Spinnerette

Hole were, for us, the quintessential female-fronted punk-rock band (we’re aware this makes us a tad uncool in certain circles), and whilst the Distillers produced some exceptional material, they never quite reached the heady heights of Courtney and co.

Fast forward to 2009, and sadly neither bands are in existence. Ms Love, aka Cherry Kookoo, is busy blogging about paranormal happenings in her studio providing the perfect excuse for still not having released her sophomore solo album, Nobody’s Daughter. Whilst the more balanced Mrs Dalle has been busy nesting with husband and QOTSA frontman Josh Homme and their two-year-old daughter.

Thankfully it seems rusks and mobiles have lost their appeal - momentarily at least - and Brody has finally embarked upon a new musical endeavour. The band is called Spinnerette, and they’re rather fucking good! Recently released début EP, Ghetto Love, showcases a different direction for the princess of punk, featuring four funky electro-infused punk-rock songs all sated with attitude and ardour. This is gritty stuff, but with a dash of some much needed glitz!

Monday, 2 February 2009

Music Round-Up 2nd to the 15th February

Friday 6th February – Florence And The Machine
There’s really nothing left to be said about the flipping fabulous Florence And The Machine, except that they’re playing two gigs this Friday and we urge you to catch at least one of them. The first gig comes under the guise of the Shockwaves NME Awards Tour, and features sets from Glasvegas, Friendly Fires and White Lies. The second gig is a recent development and takes place at Lost & Found over at The Ruby Lounge. We think the latter sounds infinitely more enjoyable!
Details: Academy 1, Oxford Road, Manchester
7pm, £15.59 adv
The Ruby Lounge, High Street, Central Manchester
Midnight, £5 adv

Saturday 7th February – Contort Yourself
This month’s Contort Yourself looks set to be hermazing. With live music courtesy of current hot-popper La Roux, and DJ sets from Rachel Burton (Radio 1), Emma Chibuku and Natalie Esquire, this all-out ladies’ affair is sure to impress.
Details: The Roadhouse, Newton Street, Central Manchester
11pm to 3am, £6

Tuesday 10th February – Asobi Seksu
Super stylish New York duo Asobi Seksu (Japanese for casual sex) are bringing their swirling shoegaze soundscapes to The Roadhouse this month, to promote their third studio album, Hush, scheduled for release on February 17th. The two-piece, helped out at live performances by a further two musicians, have been creating waves for a while now with their delightful dream pop.
Details: The Roadhouse, Newton Street, Central Manchester
7.30pm, £7 adv