Saturday 17 April 2010

Fab watches the politics

I’ve just watched the televised political debate between the 3 leaders of the main parties in Britain on the BBC iPlayer… which I thought in general was brilliant. A brilliant idea for politics and the country in general I felt, but not only that – I found I was riveted and excited by the whole deal, something I don’t often associate with watching Cameron and Brown trade insults. So I’ve decided to rather self-indulgently share my thoughts with you….

It began in a strange way for me, I found myself believing in David Cameron’s opening points which in itself scared the crap out of me as I’d not empathised with any of his views thus far in the election. He made some interesting points about Immigration whereas Nick Clegg made a few worrying ones about a regional working system which frankly evoked a vision of 1984 for me, and (for me) some poorly thought out ways of reducing crimes committed by young people (essentially cleaning up parks and streets will apparently reform young criminals).

Another really good feeling I got about the whole open televised debate idea was the general consensus from all 3 about cutting beaurocracy in the NHS, the civil service and the care system. Let’s make it happen please.

Nick Clegg for me proceeded to tear apart Cameron and Brown’s arguments about reform in the House of Commons and in the police force by simply reminding them that they had voted against such reforms previously in Parliament. He then cemented his position, in my opinion, as the strongest candidate by working through how he would fund a tax cut for the first £20,000 bracket of income tax. This began a theme, a rather encouraging one for me, where Clegg would consistently talk through how he planned to free up funds for each promise he made – contrastingly to the promises of Brown and Cameron. An honest politician who proves he’s thought first of most of the ideas the other two are putting forward to gather public favour, and talking us through his figures, surely not?

Economy…seems a basic choice between putting money in or taking it out of the system, and frankly I trust Gordon Brown’s idea of putting £6bn more into the economy so as to bouy it slightly and reduce the threat of a collapse in employment similar to that in the 1980’s… as unpopular as it would sound to be pumping in more money to such a poorly run system. Such an experienced economic servant would surely not be offering a means of renewal that would appear so unpopular and achieve nothing more than to waste more money and spiral us further into our recession black hole. Clegg and Cameron offer the opposing view, unsurprisingly, but as no expert on the economy I really really can’t figure out who is pitching the right move.

Of course, there was the rigorous bore of hearing the opening and closing speeches mainly just involving the buzz-words ‘hope’ and ‘change’. But overall I felt generally good about the whole thing, maybe down to a televised debate being such a first for politics – but I feel more strongly that it’s a belief that now in the Lib Dems there’s a party that has made me feel better about British politics for the first time in a very long while. Plus Clegg is actually quite handsome if you squint a bit.

Let me know what you guys think

Love, Fab-Kabeedie xxxx

Springtime for Norwich

It's been 2 weeks of rest for us this easter, well... i say rest but generally we've been in the midst of trying our best to think outside the box in terms of songwriting. This, for me, entailed sitting in my flat listening to Vampire Weekend's new album on repeat for many, many hours. Trying to emulate their wide range of influences proved difficult however as i realised i couldn't really play any other form of percussion other than a standard drumkit... so tabla was out. Relief came in the form of an enthusiastic Katie, who soon had the enthusiasm sucked out of her (it was gooey) by my repeatedly trying to teach her to play samba on a high tom. All frustrations aside she coped pretty well and managed not to bash my head in with the wooden spoons we used as drumsticks, so another weapon is added to our arsenal - a ginger bird with a big drum.

Our songwriting in general is going really well, some of you who've been to any of our gigs recently will have heard 'Come Out of the Blue', which we're really pleased with. We're also in the process of nailing another couple of ideas we're excited about too which we should hopefully be airing in May/June when we tour the UK and Germany again (check for details).

Dj'ing is an exciting new pastime i've picked up recently. After Evan and I did a few Dj sets last year, he taught me how to (try to) beatmatch and such on a CDJ and how to mix basically from laptop to laptop. So when we'd Dj together i'd stand doing a silly dance spinning my hat around while he did most of the work, leading to a serious false sense of accomplishment on my part. This led to me volunteering to DJ a couple of times in Norwich at the Birdcage Pub and Mustard. The latter being with my flatmate Nelly (who's in a Norwich band called Myboy/Mygirl), and after a disaster to start with... involving the Cd's we'd prepared not working at all and just making a farty noise, which went down well with 100 or so revellers... he promptly legged it out of the entire club and down the road to our flat, where he stayed a shivering mass underneath his bed - leaving me to apologise profusely and scrape together songs from other DJ's. You prick Nelly.

My passion for Aeroplanes has also been fuelled recently by the discovery that you can buy MAGAZINES devoted wholly to the subject of classic planes and airships and stuff. The things that soulless anti-social geek dreams are made of... and maybe could help me find a new replica pair of WW2 Flying Goggles, as i lost the last pair while i was bobbing for apples.

Not that i actually saw the political debate that went on between the 3 major parties t'other day, but i felt that hear-say and picking up the snippets of conversations between people in the pub gave me enough of a background knowledge to write some lyrics about it. So that's what i'm working on now, the british election and a song about fidel castro.... i'm a sodding genius

The others have probably been doing stuff too but to be fair none of them are interesting in the slightest so i wouldn't worry

Love, Fab-Kabeedie xxx

Thursday 1 April 2010


Never have we been so overwhelmed by a country like Germany... we can't thank enough the promoters who put us on, the friends we made or the people who came to see us. We've had an unbelieveable time over the last week and we feel it's only right to fill you in on our adventures, where to begin....

Incredibly, the psychopathic northern machine that is our manager Craig managed to make the journey from London, leaving at 1am, to Hamburg, arriving at 7pm, only having nearly killed us twice. Instead of bedding down for the night, we decided exploring late-night Hamburg was worth the price of feeling even more bleary-eyed in the morning, and suitably we ended up playing poker in a sports bar 'til 4am... until i had to go back to the hotel crying from being too drunk on weissbeer.

In the morning we took a stroll around Hamburg, and discovered just what a great city it is. From the wonderfully anarchistic support of FC St.Pauli (where the emblem is just a skull and crossbones) to the plethora of independant record shops where Roary found his soul again, mainly in little-known garage rock vinyl. We met our good buddy david in a cafe and he toured us around and showed us Hamburg's greatest stationary shop.
Our gig in the evening was at the Indra Club in Hamburg, which is where the Beatles first played in Germany. And we had some familiar faces in the audience in the shape of buddies we'd met at Dockville festival the last year. The show was faaabulous, we had no idea what to expect and the amazing crowd gave us 3 encores. We drank beer to celebrate. Before going our with our good friends Florentine and David, which involved seeing Germany's most famous gas station, the golden poodle club, and sitting in a hotel bar at 8am while Roary asked everyone if he could have a sausage. He couldn't.

Next day we made the trip to Leipzig with our friend Yannick...who was to put up with a lot of us over the following 24 hours.....
When we got to Leipzig we were playing at the Sweat Club, which in England would've been our worst a nightclub with dancey tunes where people just wouldn't want to hear us. But god damn it was different here. We went on at 1am and people were fabulous, the front row were singing the words and even the slow songs went down well. Afterwards everyone came to the bar for some Jagerbombs, which we all enjoyed, and to listen to the amazing barman Emmanuel. He was truly a genius. Formerly the drummer for Jason Mraz and Jamiroquai... he taught me many things, and shared several cocktails that would burn the hairs off a toad.

Waking up at 3pm on our day off was an unexpected form of bliss, and after revitalising ourselves with lemon beer (a suprising success in the morning) we returned to the venue to find Evan had drunkenly written 'The Kabeedies' over most surfaces in the club.

We returned to Hamburg to spend a few stolen hours with our music shop friends, who made us coffee, replaced the things i'd inexplicably lost, and enticed Roary with a rare bass head from southend...

Kiel was our next date, playing with a fine fine lad by the name of David Park who'd been our guide to all things German thus far, and had also taught me the proper way to kiss. Before the show we'd recieved an email from the bar saying that we had to "play quietly", which we found odd.... but upon reaching the venue (which was a charming cafe-bar) we realised it was pretty much a semi-acoustic gig...which we're rarely prepared for.
After being kindly fed and watered, and meeting possibly the fluffiest dog in the world, we set about sellotaping my clothes onto the drumkit to dull everything, and turning the intstruments down to -1.
Saying that, we really really enjoyed this show, the audience were fantastic and the gig was a real challenge that we kind of pulled off. We'll be returning to Kiel soon no doubt.

Roary had a tattoo appointment arranged the next day, to get Damon Albarn's head on his left butt cheek - so myself, Evan and Katie set off to motor FM in Berlin, for a radio show with an amazing presenter who had to translate literally everything we said instantly. That place was reeaaal nice, very trendy office, if you ever want a cool office job - look up motor fm.
The gig in Berlin was at the Bang Bang club under a railway in one of the poshest parts of Berlin, and the architecture was bloody stunning. The whole place was stunning really but we were wrenched away from sightseeing to soundcheck before going for a lavley meal. The gig was great and as our last show in Germany we gave it our all, it was probaly our smallest crowd but there were some real characters in the audience and we had a wonderful time. We returned to our hostel very very satisfied, playing pool 'til 4am and having arguments about prostitutes (rory and evan had been approached by a pimp during the night) with our new friend Marvin. Marvin was a bio-molecular scientist and explained to us how worm-eggs can cure asthma and how we should feed them to Katie, so throw them at her the next chance you get. In the morning, we left Marvin at his lab as he attempted to save the world, and we hopped in the van for our 11 hour drive home.

We'll be returning there very soon, June and September.
Kann Ich Habe Eine Wurst?

Love, Fab-Kabeedie xxx