While Dirtblonde’s activities are on hold, Ivan is still making music with his new project(s) Songs About Death (www.songsaboutdeath.co.uk) and Lucifer Sams. Here’s his demo for a song called I’m Insane:
Ivan will be DJ-ing some cool soundtrack music, as well as doing a live set with the ever enigmatic Esa Shields. The duo will be scoring a projection of classic FW Murnau film, Faust (1926) using keyboards, synths, tape loops, copicat echoes etc. That weekend It’ll also be Sound Food & Drink 1st Birthday, so come to this event and let’s start to celebrate early!!!
Ivan will be launching a one-off side project next Tuesday 30th October, with an special event at Tabac (Bold st) that’ll be perfect for this Halloween season: Songs About Death
Songs About Death will be performed by psych acoustic duo Ivan Hell and his sidekick Denis Shiel (ex- The Little Flames). The hour long performance will feature a wide range of, well, songs about death! No covers – just new songs that feature diverse musical influences from pastoral folk to Portuguese music, to Blues and psychedelic singalong freakouts and droney buddhist mantras!
This will be a very unique acoustic performance, because it’ll be full of weird experimental noises, with the occasional help of ipod apps for droning synthesizer, birdsong, tenori-on and theremin sounds!!!
Songs About Death
Tuesday 30th Oct @ Tabac
Starts 6pm with summoning of the spirits, followed by musical performance of Songs About Death.
After the live music, there’ll be a screening of rare 1920s film “Haxan – Witchcraft Through The Ages”.
Dirtblonde are playing two gigs with ace band The Shondes, from Brooklyn, in the next few days.
Dirtblonde and The Shondes were booked to play together a few years ago at Canada’s very own “South By Southwest”-style festival, the North By Northwest festival (also known as NXNE), but we couldn’t do it due to lack of funds, because we had already gone to Austin’s SXSW that same year!
So, it’s great that our paths have finally crossed! The Shondes are a really cool punk band who’ve been praised by Picthfork, MTV, Entertainment Weekly and many others, and who are playing in Liverpool for the very first time…
First off, our bands will join Mashemon and So Sexual for a gig at the new Lomax in Liverpool, next Friday 19th October. Doors 8pm, only £3 in! It’ll be an amazing night with film projections, DJ and four ace bands… if you’re around, don’t miss it!
Next, Dirtblonde and The Shondes will support Spotlight Kid at TROF Fallowfield in Manchester, on Thursday 25th October. Doors 8pm, only £3 in!
View Facebook event here: https://www.facebook.com/events/346014412146822/
To celebrate today’s National Poetry Day, Dirtblonde have decided to make a new track available, called ‘Your Story’. It mixes Ivan’s dronescape with Lula’s dark poetry. The original poem featured on Lula’s first poetry collection, At 3 o’clock I think of sex and death.
Dirtblonde’s next gig in Liverpool will take place at The Lomax later this month, on Friday 19th October, supporting The Shondes (from Brooklyn, NY). Also on the bill, So Sexual and Mashemon.
Oh, shameful news. The Liverpool City Council strikes again… just a few days after we put a night there (coincidence of course, ha!)
Today’s post was supposed to be just a quick round up of Dirtblonde’s latest gig, which took place at Mello Mello in Liverpool, last Wednesday. But just last night, news came in that the popular venue is now facing closure, thanks to the Liverpool City Council, who once again seems hell-bent on destroying all that’s fun, bohemian and non-corporate in Liverpool.
Just a few days ago, we had a great time there, putting the latest Dirtblonde gig. We were supported by two ace bands – Beach Skulls, and SeaWitches (who just keep getting better and better!). We had some cool film projections, psychedelic lights and everyone seemed to have a great time.
Afterwards, an influx of happy drunk students flooded Mello Mello, all dancing to the “Dirtblonde Sound System” DJ playlist, which included Azaelia Banks’ ’212′ (we just GOT to always play it!!!), Wugazi (‘Sleep Rules All Over Me’), Syd Barrett-era Pink Floyd (‘Candy And A Currant Bun’), Lee Hazelwood & Nancy Sinatra (‘Some Velvet Morning’) and lots of the usual (for us) obscure 60′s French psych, which I’m obssessed with at the moment!
In short – it was great, cheap fun, that could only have happened in Mello Mello, a place that was cheap for us to hire, with good sound and a friendly staff.
We had many good times there (usually at Pete Bentham’s Free Rock & Roll…) and it’s a shame that now it’s seriously facing closure. We hope that the artistic community in Liverpool will once again fight – and beat – the Liverpool City Council! As the Keep Streets Live campaign showed, when people get together for a good cause, we can fight the law and win!
We urge anyone reading this to sign the Mello Mello petition, to stop Liverpool City Council from closing the venue!
Finally, here’s a statement from Mello Mello: ‘Liverpool City Council is set to force MelloMello CIC out of business. We will NOT let this happen.
‘We will fight Liverpool City Council’s unjustified and unexpected decision to slash our business rates relief from 80% to 0%, to demand £30,000.00 a year and force MelloMello into administration. We intend to explore every possible avenue available to us as Liverpool City Council have left MelloMello CIC, its employees, its customers, its users, its local community with nothing left to lose other than everything.
‘MelloMello was founded, run and staffed by volunteers who have turned a previously derelict building into a vibrant artistic hub of activity and business. The closure of MelloMello will result not only in the loss of facilities for grassroots artistic endeavours but also the loss of over 20 jobs, the loss of trade for other local independent businesses, and the loss of income of ANY business rates for the Council.
‘MelloMello has never received funding, grants, sponsorship or investment in order to grow. The success of MelloMello is that it has grown out of, quite literally, nothing into one of the city’s favourite bars/restaurants/venues.
‘For the Council to force MelloMello out of business by taking away the only charity it has ever relied upon sends out a clear message of cultural indifference, a blatant lack of acknowledgement for the people who have managed to build a sustainable not-for-profit business out of nothing, and serves as yet another affront to Liverpool’s musical, artistic and creative communities.
‘MelloMello is worth saving, because once it is gone you will never see anything like it again.
‘We must ACT NOW to SAVE MELLOMELLO, we must let Liverpool City Council know that MelloMello WILL NOT CLOSE DOWN without a FIGHT.
The Liverpool City Council has scrapped their stupid busking policy, thanks to the efforts by the Keep Streets Live campaign, led by Johnny “Total Legend” Walker!
Earlier in July, Ivan joined a host of busking and non-busking musicians, on the first of many protests against the now defunct policy. It’s really great to see that when people get together, they can fight the law…and win!