Tuesday 18 April 2017

10 Fascinating Facts You Never Knew About "Bonjour" The debut album by Francis Macdonald and Harry Pye

Next month sees the release of "Bonjour" a ten track record and CD that Glaswegian based musician Francis Macdonald made in collaboration with London based artist Harry Pye. To celebrate it's arrival we have compiled a list of ten astonishing facts that you can impress your friends and fellow music lovers with.
1) The intro on the first track on the album ("Sometimes I Feel Like A Record That's Scratched") features the voice talents of celebrated comedy actor Kevin Eldon. Kindhearted Kevin spent a whole weekend practising his lines to make sure they were perfect.
2) Francis's favourite song on the album is, track two: Sympathy For Jean Luc Godard. Francis and Harry each drew dozens of post card sized images inspired by Godard movies which film maker Gordon Beswick then edited together. The end results were first screened as part of the "This Is Our Art, This Is Our Music" exhibition at The David Risley Gallery in Copenhagen which also included contributions from R. Crumb, David Byrne, Captain Beefheart, The Soupdragons, and Faust.
3) A spoken word track on the album called "Mondrian in Liverpool" has been described as being both "distinctive and affecting" by Paul Carey-Kent (the former editor of Artworld magazine) and "very touching" by Paul Du Noyer (the founding editor of Mojo). The track is a largely about the death of Harry's father, the impact it had on him and how he came to love non representational, minimal paintings. Harry's favourite Piet Mondrian painting is called Broadway Boogie Woogie and it was made the same year that his Dad was born.
4) The silliest song on the album is "Mike Love Fan Club" which is celebration of a founding member of The Beach Boys not known for his modesty. Francis and Harry are both huge admirers of The Beach Boys and they genuinely love Mike Love.
5) Francis composes music for films/TV and has worked with Laura Cantrell, BMX Bandits, Alex Chilton, Robert Forster, Kevin Ayers and Kim Fowley but he is best known for playing drums with Teenage Fanclub. Harry is pro re-cycling and has come up with a new twist on a very old gag.... “What’s the difference between Francis Macdonald and Walt Disney? “Francis plays drums for Teenage Fanclub and Walt Disney.”
6) When Harry met Ray Davies (of The Kinks) they got on just fine
7) When Francis met Mike Nesmith (of The Monkees) they got on like a house on fire
8) One of the tracks on the album is "Paul In Vauxhall" which is a song about Harry meeting up with a friend who lives in the same part of South London that Vincent Van Gogh stayed in. Curiously another track on the album "Come and Stay With Me" is about Vincent Van Gogh moving to the South of France and asking his friend Paul (Gauguin) to join him. Artist Howard Dyke is a fan of "Come and Stay with Me" and described the track as being "fucking beautiful".
9) Most of the album was recorded before Francis and Harry ever met (Harry emailed lyrics and Francis made recordings and emailed them back to Harry).
10) "Bonjour
released on Shoeshine records on May 26th https://bonjour.tmstor.es/cart/product.php?id=31502 It's one of the few albums released this year that ends with a heartfelt tribute to the French artist and philosopher Jean Debuffet.

Sunday 16 April 2017

Eggs 11 show at The Mainstream Gallery

"Eggs Eleven" (currently showing at Ramsgate's Mainstream Gallery) Press Release...
Just as the dairy industry is dependent on rape, eggs are the result of a process of eugenics, ethnic cleansing and extermination on a global scale. Of course, other than a few guilt-stricken and sickened individuals and pressure groups, the human race does not care. Why? Because we deem ourselves the superior species? Because we are made in God’s image? Or is it because those beasts are nameless, and therefore hold no sentimental value for us? Is it because the chicks that are refused the gift of life are so far beyond number they simply, if ironically, don’t count? These questions - of the nazification of the food industry, of Man playing God, of the billions of animals tortured and slaughtered for our nourishment and delight - have been flowing through my mind like a river of screaming vomit, but it is only upon seeing “Eggs 11”, with these life-deprived chicks caged dead in their shells, that I saw our mindless, heartless, casual cruelty crystallised. Seeing the often-childlike daubs decorating or desecrating these innocent eggs - bringing to mind the brutality of babes, the mercilessness of minors - imposing human values (of art, of humour) in an inhuman manner on a non-human entity, I wept. “Eggs 11” is a show that asks more questions than it can ever answer. This show compels you to confront yourself, to emerge naked from your own conformist shell and examine your value system. Or are you chicken?
Text by Paul Hamilton
First Photo: Egg decorated by Arthur Davies Evitt Second Photo: Artist Lee Edwards holding an egg decorated by Buffy Cook
Third Photo (above): Egg decorated by James Lawson Fourth photo (below) Dinosaur egg by Mafruha Ahmed
Fourth photo: Egg decorated by Bronte Jones.
Fifth Photo: Egg decorated by Lee Edwards