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Thursday, 28 July 2011

Guest Mix for Feel My Bicep

Been on the backburner for a few months, but it's up now - my guest mix for the awesome Bicep, on their blog Feel My Bicep. It's a mix of house from the mid 90s, the kind of thing I djed back in the day. It was all played off vinyl and mixed all the way live.



KENLOU Maw War (MAW Records) - 1996
DJ SNEAK Latin Seoul (Large Records) - 1995
SALT CITY ORCHESTRA Attack of The Crab Monsters (Paper Recordings) - 1995
ATMOSFEAR Motivation - Dimitri From Paris House Of Funk Remix (Disorient) - 1998
THOMAS BANGALTER Ventura (Roulé) - 1995
SCOTT GROOVES Mothership Connection - Daft Punk Remix (Soma Recordings) - 1998
MOTORBASS Ezio - Cassius Remix (Promo) - 1996
FRESH'N'LOW Deep End (West Side) -1996
ADAM F Music In My Mind - Deep Dish El Niño Remix (BMG) - 1997
PAPERCLIP PEOPLE Throw (Open Music) - 1994
DJ Q Feeling Moody (Go! Beat) - 1996
MOODYMANN Joy Pt 2 (KDJ) - 1995
THOSE NORWEGIANS The King D'Mazda (Paper Recordings) - 1996
TRIPPY DISCO From Dusk Til Dawn (Kushi/Unreleased) - 2000
BASEMENT JAXX Samba Magic (Atlantic Jaxx) - 1996

I can't embed the player here, you'll just have to visit the site!

Wednesday, 27 July 2011

Menergy Pride pics

Quite surprisingly, Menergy's debut at Stereo turned out to be one of our best parties ever, thanks in no small part to an influx of actorly-types who seemed to genuinely love the music, invaded the stage a number of times, and even formed a conga line round the club! For a fuller post with more pics see Menergy.tv, this is just a selection of shots featuring me and Joe:

Tuesday, 26 July 2011

TRANARCY presents SHOWGIRLS event page

Saturday August 27th at Kraak Gallery Manchester,

TRANARCHY presents an interactive screening of SHOWGIRLS!

Featuring... The Amazing Blige Sisters! The Incredible Bad Taste Barbies! The Fantabulous Pumping Iron! The Incendiary Lady Munter! with your hosts Growler & Niallist, and even MORE to be announced!


Monday, 25 July 2011

Ben Butler LIVE in Manchester Aug 9th

And I will there to perform "Infinite Capacity (For Love)" with the band! It's at the Islington Mill on Tuesday August 9th - more deets on the FB event page.

Saturday, 23 July 2011


I'd like to take this moment to distance myself from the website I used to write for, Disinformation.com.

As if yesterday's terror attack in Norway was not bad enough, Disinfo has taken to falsely reporting that the attack was "Jihadi". This is of course false, as the bomber/shooter is now known to be a right wing Christian extremist. Even after repeated calls, Disinfo have not changed the headline. As such they are now spreading Islamophpbia based on false information.

While I used to write for the site I would like to make clear that I have not done so since January of this year, and will not be doing so again.

This is terrible reporting on the part of Disinfo, and brings the already tarnished reputation of sceptics and conspiracists alike into further disrepute.

Friday, 22 July 2011

MENERGY PRIDE tomorrow!!

With djing from me and Kid Zipper with special guest Fraser Bone of Spill, and live performance from Vanity Von Glow, Lady Munter and special guest Joyce D'Vision!

Sunday, 17 July 2011

Crotch Watch

Here's a selection of the best pics from a seriously epic post I am putting up on DM called Pop Stars And Their Packages charting the history of the "lunchbox" in rock and pop music. The entry promises to get much longer the more people get involved. Any suggestions? Leave a comment.

Thursday, 14 July 2011


I have updated my remix of Scream Club & Beth Ditto, now adding some 808 kicks and vocoder, giving it a nuskool G-Funk flava:

If U Want It w/ Scream Club & Beth Ditto by theniallist

Wednesday, 13 July 2011

Tuesday, 12 July 2011

I Heart Murdochgate

So, as I mentioned in the post below, I'm obsessed with Murdochgate and the News International phone hacking scandal at the moment. It's huge - with repercussions for the media, politicians and the police. I don't think the magnitude of this scandal has even sunk in yet.

Of course, many people long suspected the tabloid press (and even the more respectable outlets) of operating such underhand methods to gain information - only now what was before just suspicion is now fact. Large swathes of the press have been under Murdoch's control for my entire life, and as a result I have always hated (in particular) the tabloid press. Not only do they try and enforce a redundant, boring, hetero-normative and unrealistic view of "real life", but no-one, I mean NO-ONE asked them to be the moral guardians they claim to be. Sorry, but selling up to 8 million papers of a weekend DOES NOT mean you get to decide ANYONE'S moral code, let alone who fucks who or what they were wearing while doing it. As much as they would like to think they represent the common man, the tabloid press are always a good 2-3 years behind what the public finds acceptable, and it generally takes a controversy or a backlash to make them see this.

Why should the real majority of this country's population cow to the ethics of a group in Fleet Street (and their paymasters around the globe) who wrongly claim to represent them? I've never seen the tabloids as anything but a scourge, a scourge that decent folk have had to put up with for the sake of having a "free press". As Steve Coogan put it on Newsnight last week, the press constantly use (the less-than-1% of the time) occasions when they actually reveal an important public interest story as an excuse to dish damaging bullshit that in reality has little relevance except to their bank accounts.

But now the thin veneer of respectability the tabloid press have cloaked themselves in for so long has vanished, and it is great. And look how they squirm in the sunlight! You would have thought that the people whose supposed jobs it is to make "moral" verdicts on other people's private lives would know how to react when their own wrong doings are reveled. But no, still they accept no responsibility for their actions, throwing blame everywhere but themselves and generally revealing themselves to be the true cowardly bullies they are. It seems hard to believe, but they don't seem to have realised just how hated they are by people in this counrty.

It feels great to finally have the scummy tabloid press as the centre of a huge, sordid exposé, it's the kind of thing i have idly daydreamed about for most of my life. Sure, the papers will continue (even though this scandal signals a major shift of news sources from oldstream to online, such as the Guardian's blog and some specific Twitter accounts) but their powers have been stripped from them. And if this keeps growing at the rate it has over the past week, if the US media pick up on it as seems to be happening, then the entire Murdoch house of cards is likely to collapse. HURRAH!

Monday, 11 July 2011

Damon Albarn's Dr Dee: An English Opera reviewed

Last Thursday evening I attended a performance at the Palace Theatre, Manchester, of Damon Albarn's new opera "Dr Dee: An English Opera". I was planning on writing a review of the opera for Dangerous Minds but have decided to put it here instead because, in all honesty, it is just not interesting enough.

"Dr Dee" concerns the story of Dr John Dee, an obscure but legendary English mathematician, cartographer and supposed mystic. Dee was a central figure in the court of Queen Elizabeth, was influential on the formation of the British navy, drew maps to the New World (America) that helped the navy become kings of the seas, and ended his life in destitute exile in Manchester trying to convene with angels after sharing his wife in a bizarre love triangle.

Sounds exciting, eh? Well, this is where the problem lies. Albarn's opera strips all the excitement out of this incredible story. What should have been a story with a global reach and truly epic proportions just ended up being a dragged out tale of a man going mad in a room. With no real explanation as to why. There was no real mention of the navy or his role in it, and you would never have known that Dee's lifetime saw some incredible changes to science and man's knowledge of the world in which we live.

Though some of the stage direction was impressive (Queen Elizabeth, attached to huge golden capes, was raised in the air and floated above the stage) it was also aimless and added little to the story (and there Liz hung for the best part of half an hour, not moving, uttering a word, adding to the story or having any real relevance).
Sets were blocked off by large, moving scrolls of paper, which was a nice touch, and some projected animations worked well, especially at the one point in which we were given a peak inside Dee's magick-obsessed brain. But it just wasn't enough to save the deep flaws in the production.

My main problem was the story. A disjointed, impressionistic look at Dee's life is not really what is called for when most of the audience does not know the main protagonist and the incredible things that happened to him. A tighter narrative focus would have helped this production no end - if I did not know who Dee was before attending I would not have left any the wiser. And that's not a good thing, considering the material Albarn had to work with. And an interesting point brought up by a friend of mine is that Dee didn't sing. In an opera about his own life?

The music, while not bad, is also not particularly great, and belies the fact that apparently this opera only went into production two weeks before it opened. Most follows a ploddingly predictable folk-based structure, with not enough use made of the choir or the orchestra, and in fairness Albarn's voice is just not strong enough for this kind of thing. A good pop star he may be, but Nick Drake he ain't. In all I felt like "Dr Dee: An English Opera" was a massively missed opportunity, and I still await definitive re-telling of this fascinating character's life.

Sunday, 10 July 2011

Dangerous Minds July 4th -10th

‘Thunderbolt, Lightning, Arpeggio’ : Bjork’s magical ‘Biophilia’ show reviewed
Hear The Horrors’ new album ‘Skying’ in full
Steve Coogan makes mincemeat of News Of The World ‘journalist’

Bit of a slow week for me on DM - mainly because I have been obsessed with the ongoing "Murdochgate" saga and what it means for the UK, and the world's media. There's no real point writing about it too much for DM as it is not fully relevant to an American audience - yet. Apparently there are some revelations still to come out that could change all that...

Saturday, 9 July 2011

Weekend in Leeds

Had a great weekend in Leeds visiting the Spencers - here's some nice pics:

Joe's dad lighting the barbeque with a blow torch.

West side reprazentin'

I love this pic of Joe with his secret, illegitimate daughter!

Thursday, 7 July 2011

PIERRE PASCUAL Saxo Mucho (NiallistLuckyPierreRemixx)

Featuring an ever so slight hommage to "Respectable" by Mel & Kim, plus nods to that classic Murk house sound and old school jungle, here is another remix wot I dun for Pierre Pascual. I am VERY happy with this, I feel like I have finally got a remix template that works for me. Bblowing up a club near you very soon!

PIERRE PASCUAL Saxo Mucho (NiallistLuckyPierreMixx) by theniallist

Tuesday, 5 July 2011

Bjork Biophilia review

So I managed to get a ticket for Bjork's Biophilia show (part of the Manchester International Festival and rare as hen's teeth) and even though it was expensive it was worth every penny. The show was phenomenal, beautiful and lots of other hyperbolic words. I left feeling very inspired. Here's the review I posted on Dangerous Minds:

Some live shows are great, some live shows are awesome, and then there are the live shows that are so good they feel like genuine magickal occurrences - a culmination of sound, vision, venue, performance and atmosphere. Bjork’s Biophilia, which is currently making its international debut with a sold out run at the Manchester International Festival, is definitely one of those. Clichéd terms like “elf-like” have haunted Bjork for years, but when an artist can pull together a show that is this all consuming, this transformative and powerful, there is definitely some truth to those clichés.

Everything about this show is unique. On a baking hot July afternoon we are ushered into a blacked out, cavernous Victorian warehouse space - in the middle sits a round stage, flanked by instruments, and overhead hangs a neat circle of 8 large screens. At one corner of the stage sits a pipe organ, a harpsichord and new instrument called a “gameleste” (a cross between a gamelan and a celeste). These instruments have been programmed to play themselves, a fact which is relayed to the audience by webcams projecting live onto the screens. In another corner sits a huge, manually operated music box, amplified through two very large gramophone trumpets, and beside it stands two new, purposely built, pendulum operated harps, The thudding bass line for the opening track “Thunderbolt” is provided by a large Tesla coil, which spits sparks of electricity over the crowd’s heads.

Still obsessed with the sounds and textures of modern electronica, Bjork underpins all this bizarre musical automata with sub-bass and electronic drums, played live by percussionist Manu Delago and music director Matt Robertson. Plucked chamber music collides with sliced-and-diced breakbeats, booming 808 bass lines accompany delicate organ pieces. It’s a perfect combination of the past and the future (and which is which is hard to tell). The sound world Bjork has created for this show is extraordinary, but it is the choir that really tips this performance over into something otherworldly. Featuring 26 female Icelandic singers, moments of harmony and discordance float from the stage that make the hairs on the back of your neck stand up. Quite simply, this is a new kind of sacred music.

The much-trumpeted visuals are gorgeous. Animated cells sing and coo while spitting out cuddly-looking viruses. Mushrooms grow and expand in stop-motion, a seal carcass is consumed by underwater worms and starfish, and we zoom through veins and arteries while triggering musical notation á la Audiosurf. Bjork has taken a bit of flack for her use of an iPad in Biophilia, but if this is what the actual apps look like, well that’s fine with me. We keep returning to images of the solar system, of galaxies floating in space. There seems to be a theme of circular motion and symmetry here, a music of the spheres if you will, but for Bjork this works on a microbiological scale, as well as the cosmological. At one point she informs us that the rate at which our fingernails grow is the same as the Mid Altantic Ridge drifts. It’s psychedelic without being druggy. In fact, with the heat, the darkness and the spectacle, this is a show where no extra stimulus is needed.

The music itself is largely new and very good too, but there are some classics from her back catalogue thrown in (namely “Unravel”, “A Hidden Place” and a gorgeous choral version of “Isobel”). The new songs are each prefaced by a voice-over by natural historian David Attenborough, which manages the trick of both commenting on the music and unifying it. The show ends with a rousing, triumphant version of “Earth Intruders”, Bjork in a massive orange wig flanked by the choir who are wearing matching gold and blue tunics. We seem to be inundated with crazily-dressed lady pop at this point in time, but we shouldn’t forget that Bjork is a true pioneer of this, and on this showing she still does it the best. Biophilia is set to tour later this year, and I urge anyone with an interest in music to go to a show - it really is that good. 2011 is only half over but I seriously doubt I’ll see another show to equal it. There is no footage of Biophilia yet, as the audience had been asked not to take pictures or make video recordings of the performance. It is a mark of the kind of respect the crowd has for Bjork that they comply to this request - well for the most part , anyway.