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Written By: frenchy on January 3, 2007 7 Comments

General Description
Artist/Band: Amy WinehouseAmy Winehouse profile At MySpace
Album Title: Back To Black
Year: 2006

Amy Winehouse - 'Back To Black'

Getting waaay too skinny..
How I Got Into This Music
This lady’s a very complex riddle: on the one hand you get the eating disorder, semi-alcoholic, retro-tattoo wearing Boozing Brit Bitch. On the other? Well, you get the most refreshing things in British music in quite a bloody long time: great vocals, sharp, nasty and intelligent lyrics and an incredible eye for drama. And this is just me talking about her first album..
So last October the follow-up album gets released and I was very curious to see if this dame’s capable of continuing her incredible pace of development with Back To Black.

Album credits at || Google Search: Other reviews of Back To Black || Review of this album at || Artist info at Wikipedia

Tracks that got my attention:
Damn.. This girl jumps right into it, head first, not scared. Very personal description of her alcohol episode(s). The sneaky thing is that you kinda forget to listen to her words coz the music is so happy and retro-classic. This works vice versa. Love it!

You Know I’m No Good
Bad girl. Very bad, bad girl.
Upstairs in bed with my ex boy,
He’s in a place, but I can’t get joy,
Thinking on you in the final throes,
This is when my buzzer goes.

The song’s great, it’s got this urban (yucky word) beat and this great brass works that reminds me the Fine Young Cannibals. And bass is working overtime, listen..

Me & Mr Jones
The way she throws down this line What kind of fuckery is this? – it’s.. It’s.. Classic! In twenty-odd years people will still remember this line and how it was sung. But the song’s got much more: this song shows the definite change of approach and direction – Miss Winehouse has gone Old School Soul and Real R&B. You get this Motown on Heroin kinda vibe, and it sure as hell works for me!

Just Friends
The intro had me fooled: first bit made me almost choke coz I thought she went US airplay commercial, but then the track really gets going and we get.. Sixties Ska!
Again, those lyrics:
And no I’m not ashamed,
But the guilt will kill you, If she don’t first
I’ll never love you like her

Chills down my spine..

Back To Black
This is so incredibly nasty: the trick (for lack of a better description) is remix of a Dusty Springfield type of production – musically and lyrically – that gives us that heart-wrenching sense of melodrama, kitsch and Soul. Love it!

Tears Dry On Their Own
Uptempo song, great feel and feeling.
I’ll be some next man’s other woman soon
I cannot play my self again
Should just be my own best friend
Not fuck my self in the head with stupid men

Wake Up Alone
Best song of the album on all fronts; great production (check out the background vocals) and again, those lyrics:
It’s okay in the day I’m staying busy
Tied up in love so I don’t have to wonder where is he
Got so sick of crying so just lately
When I catch myself I do a 180

I stay up clean the house
At least I’m not drinking
Run around just so I don’t have to think about thinking

That silent sense of content that everyone gets
Just disappears soon as the sun sets


Heheh.. This song’s excellent – hilarious!

Saw her perform on TV twice and she still is a total mystery to me. Maybe I’m the type of guy who never gets these things, but the combo of cheap skanky exterior and brilliant inner talents always pique my curiosity. In this case the cat would not only get killed, but also skinned, pissed on and then put in the microwave. And the thing is, I still love it!
It’s also very weird to hear a twenty-something sings old stuff as if she lived the combined sad lives of many a Soul singer/songstress. It’s not the easy retro-recycling of Lenny Kravitz, she somehow stays clear of the dark line of tragedy. Her lyrics are almost always incredibly witty, dark and shiny at the same time.
Like I mentioned earlier, her style and talent is incredible, now let’s see if she survives her own Drama.

Rating: ★★★★★ (those tattoos..)

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Written By: frenchy on December 28, 2006 5 Comments

It’s like.. ehm.. a selection of pictures I made this year 2006, plus a bit of a chronological thing, get it? No? Well.. some of the pics are just the ones I like best as being great shots, and some are recordings of great moments, well not necessarily “great moments”, like the car accident, but.. why don’t I just shut up?

Big thanks to the people at:
FlickrHelp and
Blogger Templates

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Written By: frenchy on December 26, 2006 10 Comments

[click image for larger sized version], Season’s Greetings 2006, originally uploaded by frenchy_rjp.
Created with fd’s Flickr Toys.

Have a great one!

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Written By: frenchy on December 7, 2006 One Comment

General Info
Artist: The Roots
Location: Paradiso, Amsterdam
When: 22 November 2006

Paradiso: The Roots

Well, read about the band here. And Search Youtube for some Roots Liveyoutube link

Not a band I really enjoy listening to.. Wait, what?!? Yep, I’ll explain: their CD’s don’t work for me; I know they’re an excellent band of incredible musicians, but.. The albums never attracted my attention. I did know that I’d kill someone’s granny’s kitten to see them live, though..

Hieronymus Fox
Well…this was D-DAY! To the Roots @Paradiso with my man Frenchy!
I have been a real Roots follower as from the early nineties. Especially their live album was really really top of the bill, so I was very very curious about this gig. Compared with their live album some members have left the group and their sound has changed slightly. You might say they have more identity now and The Roots have become a band. Off course ?uestlove and Blackthought are the soul of the band, but the sound is more consistent than some years ago.
Personally I think their latest album is the best they have done in some years.

The Show
What can I say? These guys are unbelievable! The opening: just rapper and drummer grabbing the crowd by the Unmentionables from the first second. Blackthought is a trained vocal talent. The set was great with plenty enough room for every band member to give us a solo (the bass was my fave). ?uestlove in his classic Dutch soccer team track suit ruled stage in a easy-going but strict manner. I was really amazed by the tight, very tight performance: these guys went from one song to the next without taking a breather and it all sounded so smooth, wow..
The encore was also wicked: anybody doing Jackson’s Smooth Criminal that way gets mucho bonus points.

Hieronymus Fox
The concert started off in a fierce tempo and volume. I was like a train going and going without delay. Funny thing… most of the songs were from the new album. What an energy, what a band! Unfortunately the sound was really too loud, so you could only hear parts of what he was rapping ’bout and the ears really where blown away by the noise and bass… A highlight was the percussion duet between ?uestlove and the percussion player…
The second part of the concert was even better! A long (a little too long…) version of You Got Me with surprising vocals of the guitar player who was making a George Benson meets Hendryx happening of it. After that the audience was blown away with fragments of classics like Rapper’s Delight, some real hip hop standards and…. I need Love form LL Cool J. But also Michael Jackson (Smooth Criminal) and Justin Timberlake’s Sexyback! Wow….
These guys were unbelievable.. I have been @Paradiso before but this was special…
Everybody went crazy.. the Roof was on fire!

Paradiso: The Roots

I like the way I set out to go to this concert: almost no references or impressions, only the absolute belief that I’d be in for a treat.
And I was right, oh boy, was I right!
This band takes rap to the mature level of musical craftmanship and I’ll be checking out their tour dates for a second Roots experience!

Hieronymus Fox
I have heard that earlier concerts have even been better. So what!… guaranteed quality! CU next year guys! And eeeh… Mr. Paradiso? Would you please please please be so kind to lower the volume a little next time? Thanks from my ears!

Rating: ★★★★★

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Written By: frenchy on November 30, 2006 No Comment

General Description
Artist/Band: The Pepsils The Pepsils profile At MySpace
Year: 2006

The Pepsils

Grabbing attention by the balls..
How I Got Into This Music
It was my turn to pick an artist from MySpace. I’ve searched for Dutch bands with interesting influences and the Pepsils had a huge mix of such. (Pamela Anderson? Yea, uh-huh)
But seriously, how would a band influenced by e.g. Japan, N.I.N, Scritti Politti, Kravitz, Bowie, Prince, Pink Floyd and Trevor Horn sound like?
Hieronymus Fox
OK, here we go….
A suggestion by FrEg this time. Another Dutch band and only 81 profile views..?? Welll…. fresh out of the egg! Mjammie!

The Tracks:

Love the intro! Starts with a Groove is in the heart like bass loop, nice breaks and Apollo 440 guitar riffs. The verse and rest of the song is more straight-forward, although still tight, which I like. Recommended that you listen to this! (more than once ;-) )
Hieronymus Fox
What’s this? Groove is in the Heart (Deeelite) is getting raped by Candy (Iggy), the Prodigy, Bow Wow Wow and the Creeps?
Helll..! A raw guitar/synthesizer sound, funky beat… After some listening I see some hit potential. Could easily be a song being played on 3FM….
Envigorating, catchy, energetic. Very recognisable, I’m adding Elastica’s Ready To Go in the mix..

Johnny Absolute Impossible
A tight guitar riff and straight rock song that kicks off right away. Small minus: The break to the repeat of the chorus can be worked out better; it’s sounds too cheap as it is now. Overall: good sing along and (almost) radio ready.
Hieronymus Fox
Sounds like a late seventies/early eighties punk song. When you start getting bored, fortunately the chorus brings in the necessary freshness. Bring in the pooltable and the beer and I am happy! But that intro….. it sounds very familiair…very… Classic Rock? Help me out y’all! Chicago?
Ah, the Ramones intro, kinda beach pop rock. Strongest point of this track: it’s one that I’d like to hear live!

Seven Years
This song fits in the style of the previous two. The overall feeling of the previous number is starting to echo into this one: Where are the influences of N.I.N, N.E.R.D, Pink Floyd?
It’s too electronic rock. Nothing wrong with it, but not where I stay tuned to too long…
Hieronymus Fox
Mhhhh this one is … Kind of an early Edge (U2) guitar sound and…. Smashing Pumpkins..? Typical Kink FM Jan Douwe Kroeske stuff? And… guys… no rapping anymore… please?
80’s intro (Gary Numan, Buggles) cyperpunk guitars and keyboards. Chorus is a little gem of retro-music, evoking a memory set that never really happened.

It’s a plus that the fourth published song distinguishes itself from the previous ones. So the Pepsils are not a one trick pony :-)
It has a layered build-up that is worked out well. Dark style verses that works itself to a double tempo Prodigy climax…
….and then with a short needle scratch back again to half tempo for the next verse . Hmmm, o-kay… and forward again to a climax, but then an abrupt ending, short silence and repeat of the chorus?!? Come on guys, those breaks are too harsh and should be worked out better.
Hieronymus Fox
Ha ha ha, I was starting to write down the following: “Without the uptempo beat the singing does not work for me anymore…” and then suddenly this damn Prodigy boost jumps in! Helloooooo..!! Are you still there? Superb ending of this song….
Weirdness intro, me like! There’s a definite Ween/Bowie thing going on here. But the track’s multiple buildups kinda lead to nowhere. The Linkin Park part is just that. NMCOT.

Promising sound that’s catchy, but the production still needs some work to keep your attention. So let the Trevor Horn influence shine though more and I certainly will come back to listen again.
Hieronymus Fox
The guitarsound is a little rough (on the treble that is) for me. Furthermore the singer gets a little irritating after a while. I am not saying he is a bad singer or something; but there is little variation in his voice. It’s a bit monotonous.
The sound of the band isn’t really original (except for Sleeper perhaps). It keeps reminding me of other bands and songs. On the other hand…. who said you should be original in music…. And the name is pretty original!
It took some hearing sessions to convince me, but thumbs up: 3/5
Good luck guys! And eeeh… consider adding Fisher Z to your influences too
Honestly? Like their stuff, not something I’ll be listening to, but they’re definitely making interesting music. Their biggest problem: everybody (in this case: the three of us) recognises a lot of other people’s music, but no specific style of their own – 3/5

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