Saturday, 15 December 2012

I Just Wanna Be Sixteen

When I was 16 I made myself fuckloads of mix-CDs, I think that they were either to listen while doing tractor work, or a collection of my favourite songs in case my computer broke. Imaginatively named 1 through 6, with an extra CD full of my extra super special favourite ever songs of the moment (accidentally labelled as a Frank Turner compliation), they are the most eclectic mix of music I have ever heard. It’s kind of unsettling to listen to but mostly strangely fabulous.

This is a tour of my favourite CD of these, number 4:

What possessed me to include this in my favourite songs ever, I shall never know, but I am bloody glad I did because it is a brilliant intro to a CD. Particularly when followed directly by:

Ha. Got you. Yep, second track was Rick Astley, of course. (This is the point where I hope you clicked the link, or I just look a bit mad...)

This is a bit of a curve-ball after the 90s moment, but it epitomised being a teenager for me. I got introduced to Bright Eyes by one of my best friends, fell in love with them and projected myself wily-nilly all over this song. But I stand by the fact that although Oberst’s stuff can seem purposefully profound and forcedly meaningful, I still think he speaks the truth.

I think I remember liking this originally partly because in the video she rode a huge horse whilst wearing some crazy all-in-one outfit. But I haven’t watched the video since, so I may be wrong, and in any case, it is a class song.

Because who didn’t love that song in 2008?

Before he became Ben Hudson and Kanye’s darling, Mr Hudson had a fucking good reggae/hip-hop/jazz/whatever-the-fuck-genre-you-can-think-of band. Go and buy their album because every song is self-depreciating, full of steel drums and awesome.

For further information, see Music and Lyrics. A classic* film.

I remember thinking Grease had the best opening titles ever. This was before I had really seen any other films.

This song makes me think of two things:
1. Crude synonyms for vagina
2. The year 10 German exchange trip - getting up at half past 5 for school and eating fried pasta with sugar for breakfast. My partner loved The Bloodhound Gang and pork-pie hats.

I listened to this song incessantly because I had the biggest crush on a guy called Joe. The link was tenuous at best. I now appreciate it is actually a good song in its own right.

I don't really have the words so let me tell you a different, slightly related story instead.
When I was about ten I asked my parents if I could make a mixtape to listen to in the car when we went on holiday. The said yes, expecting some mild pop I expect. The first song on the mistape was My Neck, My Back by Khia and the last song was Milkshake by Kellis. Ever since I realised the content of those songs, I have been horribly embarrassed about playing music in my parents’ cars.

Leonard is the sexiest octogenarian there is and I love him. That having been said, the change from Shaggy to Leonard maybe the strangest music change I have ever heard outside of the Kelsey’s jukebox.
He works that fedora
      13.   Around the Bend - The Asteroids Galaxy Tour
I am still not sure if this is a good song, but it was used in an iPod advert and is quite boppy and so it reassures me that I didn’t only wallow in self-pity in my mid-teens.

I always thought that when I was an old woman, that is where I would want to be sat.

There was an interview in the Telegraph magazine with Natasha Khan and I wanted to be just like her. I’m still working on it…Apart from that, Daniel is a glory. It is one of those huge, empty songs that are perfect for driving at dusk.

The Hives was, I think, the second gig I ever went to. It was me, my best friend and our boyfriends of the time and me and my boyfriend wore matching trilbies. I don't think I actually like The Hives very much.

This was never going to be a strong look.
I wasn’t a waitress in a cocktail bar; I just wished I could be so I could meet my man there and have drama. Now I work in Evolve and I feel that it isn’t quite the same.

      18.    Foxes Mate For Life - Born Ruffians

Every so often I forget this song and then I rediscover it and it makes me inexplicably happy every time. I think that this is a very appropriate song to have ended the CD on. It is a quiet song, could be described as twee but it’s subtle. It sums up the way I (and probably a lot of people) felt at 16, disillusioned, confused and really wanting to believe that love would sort it all out in the end. On top of that it is a very soothing song, the kind of aural hug that everybody needs sometimes.

And besides, who is to say that foxes don’t mate for life because they are in love?

So that's that, an eclectic collection of music, but if you play it back to back, it may be amusing for at least ten minutes. I hope. It's been interesting for me to rediscover what I used listen to, and how much it influenced what I listen to now.
Except Prince.

Until January, happy December y'all! :)


*To clarify: A. Music and Lyrics was crap. B. I have an inordinate amount of love for that film.

Thursday, 13 December 2012

Some Winter Reading.

Hey Offbeatles!

 I hope you're all looking forward to whatever celebration of the Solstice you will be partaking in this year! (I am personally fond of Saturnalia). Even though term has ended, and Idioteque won't grace the Terrace bar for another 4 weeks, Offbeat hasn't forgotten you! And while we can't be there in person, we have scoured the far reaches of the internet for you. So without further ado...

...Here are the best webcomics you might not have heard of.

A Lesson Is Learned, But The Damage Is Irreversible.

Philosophy, drawn in Photoshop.

I don't want to say it's the best webcomic ever written, but it's certainly the one that I've never grown out of. Written by novelist and critic, Dale Beran and drawn by indie gaming icon David Hellman (best known for drawing Braid), the  explores some of the deepest concepts ever tackled by comics, all while being hilariously funny. What's more, the duo just returned from a 6 year hiatus, so yeah, that's kind of cool. If you're into comics, David's panel layouts will be a breath of fresh air from the usual design. Dale is also famous for THIS, which deserves a mention. The issues are usually self contained, or done in two parters, so jump in anywhere.

Read it here: A Lesson Is Learned, But The Damage Is Irreversible

Hark! a Vagrant.

Rejoice history nerds, there is a comic especially for you!

Written by the ever wonderful Kate Beaton, the comic is the best kind of immature, and while a lot of the humour revolves around historical figures and events, the comic is just as accessible to barbarians like myself.  It doesn't follow a story arc, but there are a few recurring characters and some short stories, but you can pretty much just hit "random" over and over without feeling like you're in the dark.

Read it here: Hark! A Vagrant.

Dresden Codak

An epic, dedicated to nerd culture.

Written and drawn by Aaron Diaz It's largely a rant about transhumanism and the fall of biological "man" in comic form. So, yeah. It can come across as a little preachy and over dramatic, but the stories are engaging and the characters are interesting. It follows major story arcs, lasting real time years as Diaz slowly produces a comic at a snails pace, and the characters remain constant throughout, so it's worth reading this one from the beginning. Terrifyingly well drawn, and pretty well written, the comic is fantastic to read, though lacks the sense of humour of most of the others on the list, it's worth reading for the art alone.

Read it here: Dresden Codak

Pictures For Sad Children.

Haters gonna make some good points.

Aside from being the subject of TUMBLR DRAMA, the bizarre and singular John Campbell likes to draw comics about stick men with low self esteem. It's bittersweet, insightful and often downright disturbing stuff, but never fails to be funny in the process. Apart from a weird storyline loosely based around T.S Eliot's "The Love Song of J Alfred Prufrock" (yep) the comic tends to run in self contained stories or three panel sprints. The archive is catalogued from the first comic, but you can skip ahead if the story of "Paul Who Is A Ghost" stops making sense.

Read it here: Archive

Rice Boy

I'm still not sure what happened.

Rice Boy is a surreal fantasy epic written by Evan Dahm. It's incredible, and to call it "fantasy" is to liken it to a world of clichés and basement dwelling D&D players. It's more like the result of the best kind of acid trip, and is incredibly well told, constantly pushing the boundaries of the bizarre realm of Overside. It's definitely worth reading from the beginning, but give yourself a whole evening, curl up with some tea and I promise you won't regret it.

Read it, and associated stories here: Overside

Well that should be enough reading material for this Solstice/Wintermas/Fawnstold.

Have a good one!
Love Offbeat. x

Monday, 3 December 2012

Offbeat: Week 10

Week 10

Idioteque  Wed 5th Nov [Terrace Bar, Campus]

It's the last Idioteque of term! Moreover, it's the last Offbeat social of the term!  It's going to be grand. You should be there.

Other News

Bandsoc are teaming up with RockSoc and PunkSoc to put on a music showcase of local bands. It's tomorrow and it's free! Check out for more details.

As a heads up, we will be hosting another wonderous CD swap early next term, so keep note of any music that catches your eye over Christmas!  There will be more details about this released closer to the time.

In the mean time, as this is the last email of term, Offbeat wishes everyone a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year! 

We hope to see you on Wednesday!

Lots of love,

Offbeat x

Thursday, 29 November 2012

Offbeat: Week 9

Week 9

It's week 9, and it's your vice-President Poppi Hobb's birthday! And as such, you should all come along to this weeks events and wish her Happy Birthday.

Offbeat at Zephyr Lounge – Tues 27th Nov [Zephyr Lounge, Leamington]

The last Zephyr Lounge of term! There will be £2 pints as always, and lots of great music to go with it.

Leamington Field Trip – Thurs 29th [The Duke onwards, Leamington]

It's back again this year! Less of a pub crawl, more of a pub wander. We’ll be meeting in The Duke at 8:30, and then working our way down through the pubs and bars of Leamington, getting thoroughly merry as we go. It's going to be excellent.

Check out facebook for more deets:

Hope to see you Wednesday!

Lots of love,

Offbeat x

Wednesday, 28 November 2012

RIP Tubelord

Last Tuesday began like any other day - until one of my favourite bands announced they were splitting up. I say they announced it, their record label declared that New Year's Eve would be the date of the band's farewell show and that was that. In the week that's followed, I've been slowly trying to piece together my thoughts on the band. I don't think I've ever been this upset about the impending split of a band before, and I figured that meant it was worth me trying to write something about them. As it happens, the wonderful chaps over at Musical Mathematics have declared today Tubelord Day and as such gave me an incentive to get something finished and out into the world. I'm not going to try to write some sort of history of the band, because that will be done elsewhere and far better than I possibly could. Instead, I'm going to do a sort of story of my own love affair with Tubelord. It might be interesting to you, it might not. Either way, it's going to be emotional. So let's begin, shall we?

Tuesday, 20 November 2012

Offbeat: Week 8

Week 8

Idioteque  Wed 21th Nov [Terrace Bar, Campus]

You know the drill by now: 9-1 in the Terrace Bar this Wednesday. You bring your lovely selves, we'll bring the music and the biscuits.

Mr Scruff

Warwick Arts Centre are running a competition for a pair of free tickets to Mr Scruff this Saturday:

Mr Scruff will be coming to the Warwick Arts Centre next Saturday (24th) and it promises to be a great night. Event is being held in the Butterworth Hall, and it a 5 hour set until 2am. Drinks will be available from insight the hall and Mr Scruff will also be being his famous Tea Shop with him! There is also a competition running to win a pair of tickets and a personal portrait by Mr Scruff himself. 

Competition details on the Arts Centre Facebook and Twitter pages and the following link is for the Facebook event:

Hope to see you Wednesday!

Lots of love,

Offbeat x

Monday, 12 November 2012

Offbeat: Week 7

Lots to talk about including the biannual Never Mind The Offbeat and lots of discounts!

Week 7

Offbeat at Zephyr Lounge – Tues 13th Nov [Zephyr Lounge, Leamington]

Join us from 7 til late in Zephyr Lounge! This week we’ve changed the music up a little this week so there’ll be some older stuff amongst the usual latest and best. Post on our Facebook group if there’s any particular gem you’d like to hear.

Never Mind The Offbeat – Wed 14th Nov [Curiositea, Campus]

We’re wiling to bet* this will be most indie pub quiz you’ll go to this year. There’ll be questions, prizes, and embarrassing facts about the exec. Check out: for all the details. It's going to be excellent. Not one to miss!

(* not an actual bet)


We’ve been working hard on getting all you lovely people some discounts:


If you can't make Zephyr on Tuesday, Taylor Johns House have offered Offbeat members FREE tickets to see Sandro Perri. Email us back or message us through facebook to get on the guestlist. Check him out here:


The next Bread Club gig is on the 19th November: and it’s only £4 for Offbeat members! As ever, send us a message to get on the cheaplist.


This one is going to be a belter. We’ve worked out £5 on-the-door tickets to see The Crookes on 17th November atThe Sunflower Lounge, Birmingham. (Check out the first single from their latest album Hold Fast here:

To get on this, contact us through this blog or through the Offbeat Warwick facebook page.

Check out the listings for any of these places, and we'll do our best to work out a discount for you.

Hope to see you around this week!

Lots of love,

Offbeat x

Friday, 2 November 2012

To Listen While You Work... do be do do do do dooo

What up, Offbeatles.

So by now we're all settling into university life: doing your own washing, trying (or failing) to get up in time for lectures, cursing the U1 for being late and/or full all the bloody time and regretting that last drink in Kelsey's at 2am last night.

But we are at one of the best universities in the country and, sooner or later, we all need to knuckle down and do some work. That's right. I said it. Work.

And in that vein, as I enjoy the last week before I need to get cracking on my four non-assessed essays that are due in at the end of term, I thought I'd try and make things easier for you by making a list of some of the best music I've found to listen to while you work. Or if it's the case that you always have to work in complete silence, the best music to listen to to chill out after a hard afternoon's graft (by which I mean reading – I am a social sciences student after all).

1.     And So I Watch You From Afar

Three-piece post-rock band from Northern Ireland – mostly instrumental, really atmospheric, totally wonderful. As with the best contemporary instrumental bands, their music is so well crafted it makes you feel like you're going on a journey and feeling emotions along the way, even if there are no words to shape it, and as such are better to listen to while working than some more generic rock music. Their album 'Gangs' is definitely the best to listen to: its throaty guitar riffs and rich crescendos mean it's lively enough to flitter at the edge of your consciousness, but the lack of vocals mean unless you deliberately pay attention, it shouldn't distract you too much.

2.     Bonobo

I am absolutely and completely in love with this artist. He's a DJ-producer type who produces ambient progressive house music. I discovered it when really, really drunk, lying on a friend's sofa about to pass out. I listened to it again when sober and discovered it's not only just the thing to soothe you into sleep, it's also a great study aide. (No, that isn't a contradiction in terms). I particularly recommend his DJ sets on the Soundcloud website ( – they're incredibly easy to listen to which is why they work so well, and the textures and patterns of his songs blend into one another so well that it's a real treat for the ears. I listened to the two of them on repeat while in the library revising for my exams last year.

3.     Ali Farka Touré

This man is a Malian singer and guitarist. I doubt you've heard of him, despite him being one of not only Mali but the whole of Africa's most famous musical exports, and one of Rolling Stone magazine's '100 Best Guitarists of All Time'. But you should. His music helps me work because the rhythms are so complex and deep – although he uses the guitar, the blues-infused African style means the song's structure is very different from what we're used to. The vocals are virtually never in English, so they don't distract you from what you're doing; they just complement the music. His work is also very strange and atmospheric – especially 'Radio Mali' and 'Cinquante Six'. I am not ashamed to admit I learnt about this guy from my Dad.

So there you have it. Three bands/artists whose music will help you knuckle down and get that work done – meaning on a Wednesday after a good few hours' work you can feel satisfied in a job well done and toddle down to Idioteque for a celebratory drink (or three).

Friday, 26 October 2012

Listen to this

'Cus it's great. I've been obsessed with it for like a week now.

Thursday, 18 October 2012

Offbeat DJs

This blog post is partly about where some of the society money goes, but also about how we support our music events, and my role in the society. I'm John Lapage, and I have been exec of this society for a period longer than the majority of undergrads have been at this University. I started as Vice President at the end of the 09/10 academic year, was treasurer the subsequent year, and now I am 'Live Events'.

We made a new 'Live Events' exec role for this year, because organising the DJs takes a fair bit of organisation, and it deserves its own slot. I'm also aiming to get a few gigs on, possibly next term, finances permitting.

When I DJ, people ask me 'John, how did you become some sort of badass music demigod'. Flashing my pearlywhites I can honestly reply 'because someone showed me what buttons to press, and I have practiced since'. DJing on some types of kit is really difficult, but we have invested in equipment that is really easy to learn. So when our hypothetical Idioteque goer from earlier in the paragraph asks 'can I learn how to DJ', the answer is an unequivocal yes.

Indie DJing is the piss-easiest type of DJing, so much so that anyone who can do 'real' DJing quite rightly looks down their noses at us. Fact is, most indie songs are designed to have a beginning, a middle and an end. Most 'club', 'dance', etc etc music that a real DJ might play are designed to have a good middle, but the start and the end are really there so that they can be mixed into songs with a similar tempo and sound. Therefore at worst, DJing a set entirely composed of straight indie songs sounds pretty much like putting your iTunes on '10 second autofade'. With only a couple of hours instruction, a rank beginner can be shown how to recognise how to cope with different songs, and make an appealing set. The real challenge is actually in song selection, either from planning out a really good set, or when you get good, knowing what songs will mesh well with what you are playing, and also complement the current mood of the venue.

Me, using the old kit at a 24 hour Trampolining Charity event.
DJing can be super lonely.

So why do we bother having DJs really? Fact is that most bars have music playing. Thing is, it looks better for a bar to have someone there, actively putting the music on, rather than just having an iPod playing. It's just about customer perception. Also if you are dealing with the SU or a big bar, they might be trying to sculpt an entertainment programme that covers a spectrum of music, and thus customers. These 'Indie Nights' (like Idioteque) come with strings attached - music policies, on what should and shouldn't be played. It's not very restrictive for us, but it gives the bar an air of legitimacy and variety that ultimately equates to 'more punters, more drinks sold'.

The level of simplicity might on the face of it sound lame, but that's enough for us to put someone on at Idioteque or the Zephyr lounge earlier on in the night, playing the music that they would want to hear in a bar, and getting a bit of experience. Later these people can be introduced to more complicated stuff like looping, effects, filters and so on, and you have the beginnings of a great DJ. With practice and a decent knowledge of the more electro end of the Indie/Alt spectrum, you can end up DJing just as proficiently the aforementioned 'real' DJs.

Our DJing is all MP3-based. Most DJs these days use CDJs, and honestly I don't really understand the point in keeping to that technology. Vinyl DJing is an art unto itself, and we also now have the kit to do this. We have two sets of 'Controller' that plug into a computer, allowing the program Traktor to operate to its full capabilities. The new controller we have just invested in allows up to 4 decks to be operated at once, both within Traktor, or from external inputs such as Vinyl Decks, or any stereo input. It's pretty boss, is what I am saying. This kit in total is the most expensive thing that we have spent society money on, so it's really important to us that as many members benefit from using it.

The Old Kit - Dinky, cheap and light.
The new kit. Fuller featured, robust and heavy as a motherfuck.

It really helps me if I can always find people to DJ. Therefore if you fancy being shown how to do this, and getting into it, get in touch with me (John Lapage) and I'll arrange a group session some time. You can get in touch by finding me on facebook, the uni email register (people search), or by messaging the Offbeat Warwick page. You have to be a paidup member to do this, for insurance purposes. There's no commitment, and we are all volunteers, even me.

Saturday, 6 October 2012

CD Swaps - A Guide

There’s a lot going on at Offbeat – playlists, radio shows, gig trips, quizzes and Idioteque to name, well, most of it. But as amazing as all those are, they pale in comparison to our flagship ‘event’, our world famous mixtape swaps.

The Haul
For those who have just joined us, or members who’ve been practising their cave dwelling skills, essentially we meet once or twice a term to swap CDs, have a few drinks, win some prizes, and generally have a good time.  You’ll be told much more about this nearer the time, but the basic ‘Rules’ are as follows.

1.    Pick up a blank CD (if needed) from one of the exec/previous social
2.       Think of a theme – the only limits are your imagination, your music library and the law.
3.       Pick 10-15 tracks (guideline number) and burn them to the CD
4.       Make some artwork – a little bit of thought and effort make a huge difference!
5.       At the least include a title, a track-listing and a name (yours, ideally)
6.       Come to the social and place your CD in the elegant and stylish receptacle.
7.       Once everyone’s arrived, it begins. If you’ve put one in, take one out.
8.       Then drink/mingle/find who has yours etc
10.   Joy.

It’s all very simple, but a lot of fun – to make it even more so, we offer prizes for the Best Theme and Best Artwork, as well as a few bonus prizes, hidden in random CDs by the exec.  It’s important to note at this point that Best Theme and Artwork are not judged by taste, but on Humour, Effort and Originality – there’s no music snobbery or elitism, we just reward things which are objectively ace.

The Exec debate Best Theme and Artwork

So that all sounds fun, but why should you get involved?

Well, first and foremost, it’s a great way to meet other Offbeat kids – talking about your CDs breaks the ice faster than a warmed up hammer (just go with it) and it’s an ideal way to discuss music tastes without asking the dreaded ‘so what’s your favourite band?’ We strive as hard as possible to combat elitism and snobbery, so everyone and every taste is welcome, whether you listen to bands that barely exist or stadium-hopping juggernauts – you’re guaranteed to meet a range of people, and we tend to think that’s a jolly good thing.

Not only can you leave the night with some new friends, you’re also guaranteed some new music – and often not just a random pick and mix selection, but tracks that have been deliberately and lovingly chosen.  Each CD can offer a little window into somebody else’s world of music, and frequently you come across gems that you might easily have missed.  It might even open your eyes and ears to whole new genres - it can be difficult to make headway into certain styles or eras of music, but having a personal guide in the form of a well-crafted mixtape can be invaluable.

It’s not all about the music you take away either, as the act of making a CD is perhaps the best way to explore your collection.  We all have records we love and remember, but trawling through your iTunes to find the perfect track to fit the theme can unearth some long forgotten treasures, as well as highlight things you passed over first time round.  There’s also countless layers of music nerdery to indulge in, be it beat matching, theme interweaving or just pun making.  Putting a song on a themed mixtape gives it an extra layer of meaning, something that even if it goes unnoticed by the recipient can still be highly enjoyable for the craftsman.

And talking of craft, the act of making a mixtape is a way of creatively and actively engaging with music, something I personally struggle to do otherwise.  With little to no talent at actually making music myself, I derive great satisfaction from shaping and rearranging the work of others into something unique and personal – there’s a fair chance I enjoy making the things more than the person does receiving them. The artwork is also pretty important - so little of my degree is hands on and ‘craft’y , so the opportunity to get stuck in with some felt tips and pritt-stick is one to gleefully seize.

Perhaps I’m over thinking the whole thing, and perhaps no-one needs to analyse the simple act of burning some songs to a CD, but the other day I came across a stash of Offbeat-made CDs in my collection, and it was heartening to think that I’ll keep those little slices of personality for as long as I can, and that perhaps one day someone will rediscover the ones I made in a dusty attic somewhere.  You can put as little or as much effort in as you like, but it’s a chance to make something unique, personal and potentially long-lasting, so why not give it your all?
Some of our lucky winners

So you’ve read through/skimmed the over-analysis and want to make a CD, but need some inspiration? Well, to help you out here’s a list of ideas and some we've had previously - the first few are simple ideas to get you started, and then there are some of the more esoteric examples towards the end. We hope that they ignite some form of creative spark, and we look forward to seeing what you come up with!

Best of [Year]
Childhood Favourites
Books or Films (inspired by or in accompaniment to)

Tracks inspired by Wikipedia’s Random Article Search
Songs with Violins (encased in a home-made cardboard violin)
Around the world in 80 Offbeats (80 indie songs from around the world, encased in a specially annotated Atlas)
Face Paints (came with a box of face paints)
Book of Birds (songs with birds in the title, accompanied by hand drawn illustrations)
Hangover Mixtape (came with a bottle of wine)
The Offbeat Guide to Revision (encased in a revision guidebook)
Random (included a selection of films, and a toy car)

The aftermath of the Face Paint CD

Thursday, 20 September 2012

Seven Re-cut Film Trailers

(Because lists of five are overrated)

I'm going to let the clips do most of the speaking for this entry, but I hope you realise that writing this took just as much time and procrastination as a more verbose article!
I love covers and different takes of music and film, so here are the seven best re-cuts I've come across on Youtube:

Ferris Bueller's Day Off as an Indie Film

Ferris Bueller's Day Off has to be one of my favourite films. It's feel-good without being saccharine, but at its heart it's a coming-of-age film, full of drama, which is exactly what this trailer captures. In fact in many ways, unlike the others on this list, this trailer is actually more faithful to the film than the official one!

The Fellowship of the Ring as Directed by Wes Anderson

The Lord of the Rings meets The Darjeeling Limited. With large battle sequences it's not quite an Indie film, but there's still something very Anderson about it.

Terminator II as a Pixar Movie

The author has disabled embedding this video, which is a crying shame, but please, please take a look at this! Re-cut in the style of Wall-E (another excellent film) to the soundtrack of Terry Gilliam's Brazil, this is another film that I would actually pay through the nose to see. I understand how this may make people feel I have questionable taste.

500 Days of Summer as a Thriller

I actually haven't managed to see 500 Days all the way through yet, but there's still a week and a bit left of summer to go... Less if this trailer is anything to go by (!)

Jaws as a Disney Movie

I have literally no idea what went through the head of the guy who thought this up, but I'd like to meet him. There's something very difficult about trying to keep a straight face to out of tune singing.

Brokeback To The Future

Something every bit as ridiculous as any of the others on this list, Brokeback Mountain meets Back to the Future. Gloriously silly.

10 Things I Hate About Commandments

And finally, 10 Things I Hate About You meets The Ten Commandments, with a little Samuel L. Jackson thrown in for good measureMore possible, no, -definite- sacrilege, but a fair reflection of the whole list really, and so a good trailer to end on.

Honourable mentions:

Scary Mary Poppins
The Sound of Music re-cut as a horror movie
Pixar's 'Up' re-cut as Gran Torino
Pulp Fiction re-done with Muppet actors

Suggested reading:

Empire's "The Fifty Best Youtube Movie Trailer Mash-ups"

Thursday, 6 September 2012

This Blog Is Titled "A List Of Things I Think Are Quite Good"

So, after the self-explanatory title, here it is:

Number One.

My first thing that is good is a film that I have watched SO many times this summer - Nocturna, a film about a boy who is afraid of the dark.  So this boy Tim is afraid of the dark and has a favorite star that makes him feel better about that, but one day he notices it isn't there, and so he missions it through the night to get his star back. Okay, the storyline may not be great, it's a pretty standard message about finding courage and conquering your fears, but then it is also a film for 7 year olds and some of it is a bit cheesy as a result. You are probably sat there thinking, well, that sounds like EVERY DISNEY FILM EVER (except maybe Disney's Sleepy Hollow which was something that should never have been made) but it is not. The most obvious difference between this and most animated films is the style, everybody is out of proportion and hardly any characters have noses, but this just makes them better because the characters themselves are brilliant. Particularly the Cat Shepherd who has big arms for running on all fours and is nimble and wonderful.
So that also gives you a good idea of the general look of the film as well as the Cat Shepherd, as the whole film is set at night the colours are lovely and muted which I quite like.
If there is one bit you have to watch it is a brilliant segment while Tim and the Cat Shepherd are running through the city showing all the people that come out at night and give you bed-hair and shake the dew onto the trees.
Number Two
So I have been mocked by many people about this one since starting uni, but I really love National Geographic and so should you. So, my gran has been getting me and my dad subscriptions for years now and it's genuinely the best present ever, the first issue of your subscription even comes with a branded fleece. Everyone go out right now and buy a copy, unless you hate learning about the world and how it works and looking at awesome pictures of weird animals and reading articles on stuff like this:
This guy is a Roma gypsy who made it big selling metal and to show his status got this tie made. From real gold. With the brand of his car woven into the deisgn. Who doesn't love that right? Yes, maybe it is not massively academic, but it's a magazine full of interesting articles about complicated things written in a way that is easier to digest than a full-on academic paper, from archaeology to world politics. Also, their infographics are top-notch and dayum, bitches love infographics.

Number Three
The third thing in this list is this blog. It is updated pretty regularly with new and awesome things that are happening, mostly in the design/illustration/general arty stuff world, everything is linked which is good and they do loads of videos on different trades (prime example: pub sign painting) and how things are created and the such. Also, there are links to loads of class things such as this and this which are oddly addictive because everybody likes to think that they have an eye for colour/room design/how to use negative space to create a calm and collected mood. This blog has introduced me to so many interesting things and I just love knowledge.
Number Four
 Someone Like Me (Tales From a Borrowed Childhood) by Miles Kington is a book that my Dad heard on Radio 4's book of the week and then demanded that my mum buy for him, which bless her socks, she did, and I promptly stole. It's written as if to be an autobiography, but is pretty much entirely fictional. But ignoring that, it is also one of the wittiest books I have read. Each chapter is readable in itself, so if you ever find yourself perusing a library, then find this and read:
a. The chapter in which the Kington's hold a memorial for an aunt who has not yet died
b. The list of advice from his father
c. The chapter about wardrobes
It is genuinely funny, if you are not going to take things too seriously and analyse the writing too closely, and if I had the money to be buying hardback books for everyone I would be giving you this right now as a reminder that most of the time, people are a bit ridiculous.
Number Five
So, Offbeat is a music appreciation society so my fifth item on this list is another list, but this one is a list of songs I've been listening to recently, some are new songs, some are less new but NO LESS GREAT.
1. Yuksek - On a Train
2. Jim Lockey & The Solemn Sun - Warriors
3. The Beautiful Girls - Morning Sun (excuse the random video)
4. Tame Impala - Apocalypse Dreams
5. Joe Goddard - Gabriel
Cheers ladz :)