GIITTV: NEWS: Paul Draper announces first solo UK tour

Paul Draper – ex-Mansun frontman, and The Anchoress producer and collaborator – will tour the UK in September for the first time with a full band, including Catherine Anne Davies (The Anchoress).

The six-date tour begins 14th September in Leeds and pre-sale tickets are available from Friday 3rd March at 9 am.

LIVE DATES:

14th: Brudenell Social Club, Leeds
15th:  Gorilla, Manchester
16th:  King Tut’s, Glasgow
21st:  Scala, London
22nd:  Thekla, Bristol
23rd:  o2 Institute 2, Birmingham

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The VPME Get It Loud In Libraries – Josefin Öhrn + The Liberation – Liverpool 25.02.17

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Stewart Parsons has been staging gigs in libraries for ten years under the banner Get It Loud In Libraries, often on a shoestring and certainly at the expense of an ‘easy life.’ But when you chat to Stewart his passion for music and libraries as a vibrant communal space as well as a seat of learning shines through, or as he put it in a recent interview, he wanted “to make libraries meaningful, useful and enjoyable for young people who hadn’t visited in years, if at all.” And Get It Loud In Libraries have quite a track record for spotting and supporting nascent talent putting on the likes of Adele, Florence and The Machine, Wolf Alice, Warpaint, Ellie Goulding at early stages in their careers.

Josefin Öhrn + The Liberation Get It Loud in Libraries - Photo: Andy Von Pip

Tonight the headliners are Swedish psychedelic space gazers Josefin Öhrn + The Liberation, they’ve not been on the scene that long yet have still managed to record two majestic and critically acclaimed full-length albums in just over a year. Apparently, their latest release the beautiful ‘Mirage’ the follow-up to their critically acclaimed debut Horse Dance was originally intended to be an EP, but the songs just kept arriving. Sometimes the muse hammers at your door so insistently and it would be somewhat rude not to let her in and at least have a chat.

Last year the band delivered THE stand out set at Liverpool’s much revered International Festival of Psychedelia producing a set of raw power and tender reflective beauty. DJ Cherrystones who will apparently be collaborating and co-writing a number of new songs with the band opened the evening with an eclectic set that artfully built the anticipation for the main event. The futuristic setting of Liverpool library’s ‘Discover’ room provided the perfect backdrop for Josefin Öhrn’s space -psych-dream pop which mixed light and shade, sonic power with motorik rhythms and dazzling swirling keyboards as they elegantly wove elaborate psych pop tapestries that gradually expanded into every space and sweep of the circular venue.

Josefin’s nuanced glacial vocals floated above the swirling mix adding an otherworldly feeling to proceedings but providing the melodic glue that held together the band’s propulsive sound. The set comprised of tracks such as the gorgeous hypnotic ‘In Madrid’ and the beautiful undulating ‘Rushing Through My Mind’ from their latest album as well as choice cuts from their debut such as the monolithic ‘Dunes’ and the sensual ‘Take Me On’ as they produced a flawless performance.

The music combined with jaw-dropping kaleidoscopic psychedelic projections from Innerstrings transformed the library into a pulsing temple of sonic beauty and tripped out visualisations. Josefin Ohren was equally hypnotic – offstage she’s generous, gentle, warm, polite and softly spoken, but on stage she’s transformed into an imperious spellbinding psyche warrior queen, swaying and losing herself in the undulating loops and rhythms of the music. As we left the venue the words of American writer and scientist Isaac Asimov came back to us with a fresh resonance – “it isn’t just a library. It is a space ship that will take you to the farthest reaches of the universe,”  for 60 minutes Josefin Ohren +The Liberation, did just that, they liberated our minds and made our spirit soar with a magisterial performance of grace, power and beauty. A perfect union of art, artist and location which one felt privileged to be involved in.

Josefin Öhrn + The Liberation Get It Loud in Libraries - Photo: Andy Von Pip

Josefin Öhrn + The Liberation Get It Loud in Libraries - Photo: Andy Von Pip

Josefin Öhrn + The Liberation Get It Loud in Libraries - Photo: Andy Von Pip

For more on Josefin Öhrn + The Liberation visit …

 

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GIITTV: Chicano Batman – Freedom is Free (ATO Records)

Chicano Batman are quite possibly the most stylish looking band around. On duty, they are usually dressed in matching burgundy or dark blue vintage suits complete with bow ties and ruffle shirts. It is not an easy look to pull off and certainly no one in Britain can do it without being ironic. But that’s the difference. Chicano Batman are from Los Angeles. They look every inch as exotic as you might anticipate, bringing the rustle of the breeze through palm trees with them.

Freedom is Free is Chicano Batman’s third album. They have built a reputation as a tight four-piece honed through relentless touring. Having supported Jack White and Alabama Shakes, they are no strangers to big events. The strength and confidence of their live performance is something they have succeeded in capturing on this latest release.

Chicano Batman are sunny, sunny, sunny. They exude that jubilance and lust for life that the British only exhibit on holiday, for two weeks a year.  This is exactly the type of soul and R&B music that they used to play in the Trent House pub in Newcastle, owners of the coolest jukebox in the land. Produced by Leon Michels, this album has all his trademark keyboards and horn arrangements. New York’s all-female Mariarchi Flor de Toloache also create coherence, providing vocal performances throughout.

There is little change in tempo in Freedom is Free. You can play it end to end basking in its red and yellow exuberance. Tracks such as ‘Passed You By’ are especially soulful; Bardo Martinez sings like a sweet Marvin Gaye. On ‘Jealousy’ the vocals skip along like a pebble on a smooth pond.

The first single from the album is ‘Friendship (Is A Small Boat In A Storm)’.  Even when the subject matter is potentially upsetting, Chicano Batman stay upbeat and pragmatic. The song has an incredibly funky bassline and if this doesn’t get you dancing, I don’t know what will. It has plenty of sixties’ psychedelic keyboards for extra measure. ‘Freedom Is Free’ sounds like another single contender with its gloriously up-tempo rhythm.

A set of three songs are in Spanish to provide a Latino flavour: ‘La Jura (Prelude)’ ‘La Jura’ and ‘Flecha Al Sol’ (Arrow to the Sun). You are most definitely out in the hot streets at night dancing to these ones.

The most political track is ‘The Taker Story’. Almost spoken word on top of the female vocal, this is a classic complaint about the arrogance and selfishness of human beings. At times there are more syllables than will fit in the beat; Martinez engages with war and slavery like a modern Bobby Womack.

‘Freedom Is Free’ is a sociable album and not one to be experienced either alone or sitting down. So get up and let’s dance self-consciously about the living room as only we know how.

Freedom Is Free will be released on 3rd March 2017 through ATO Records.

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GIITTV: FILM: Zoology (Ivan I. Tverdovskiy – Glasgow Film Festival 2017)

If you’re going to grow a tail, you may as well work in a zoo. At least you’re not going to get laughed at by a lemur; hyenas may typecast themselves and have a chortle, obviously. Cackling wolf-wannabes notwithstanding, it seems the safest possible environment for such an extreme body-modification and such is the case with Zoology, an enchanting modern fairy tale from Russian writer-director, Ivan I. Tverdovskiy.

 
With a cast of grotesques straight out of Grimm or even the whackier outposts of Shakespeare, it exists in its own self-contained universe. You just need to go with the flow. Why wouldn’t you grow a tail? Once you accept that, it becomes a perfectly-formed little piece of magic. Magic with a luminous performance at the heart from Natalya Pavlenkova as the funkily morphing Natasha.

 
Zoology is, in many ways, the perfect festival film. A real curio with neither rhyme nor reason for its existence. It simply is. There’s a childlike sense of wonder whilst also being intensely adult. It’s very unlikely ever to be huge box office but it’s utterly charming as it follows Natasha and her travails with her new-found appendage. How to deal with co-workers – the ugly sisters – and neighbours, as the rather impressive tail grows. And could there be love? Love from someone despite the tush…or even because of it?

 
Choc full of sparkling scenes of gentle comedy and introspection, Zoology does not judge. The various hags, crones and other inhabitants of the coastal town may have some rather devilish views concerning their mutating cohabitee, but the film simply observes the really quite odd goings-on.

 
A movie that is equal parts amusing, touching and, initially at least, baffling, it’s a little gem. Beautifully acted and directed, Zoology is a window into a world of marvellous characters, both good and ill. Lovely stuff and deserves to be seen as widely as possible. Impossible not to smile at its eccentric logic that is, despite the supernatural nature of the plot, intensely human and humane.

 

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Digital Inspiration Technology Blog How to Email Unique File Attachments using Mail Merge for Gmail

Mail Merge, available for Gmail and Google Inbox, is a perfect tool for sending personalized emails to one or more email addresses using a simple Google Sheet. If you never performed merge before, please watch the Mail Merge tutorial and documentation to get started.

One of the most popular features of Mail Merge is its unique ability to send different file attachments to different email address. For instance, if you are applying for a job at different companies, you can attach the same PDF resume in all email messages but the cover letter could be different with each application.

This step-by-step tutorial explains how you can you can use Mail Merge for Gmail to send unique email attachments to your contacts. Mail Merge pulls files from Google Drive and includes them as attachments in the outgoing email messages.

Step 1: Install the Mail Merge add-on.

Step 2: Open a new Google Sheet, go to Addons > Mail Merge with Attachments > Create Merge template to initialize the sheet.

Step 3: Add one or more rows in the Mail Merge sheet. To keep things simple, you can add the First Name, last Name, and the Email address as shown in the screenshot.

mail-merge-row.png

Attach Google Drive files to Mail Merge

Step 4:  Go to Addons > Mail Merge > Add File Attachments > Insert Files from Google Drive and select one or more files that you wish to send with your email message. You can also select the option Select Files from Computer if the files are on the computer.

Mail Merge will get the direct link of the selected file(s) and inserts them into the File Attachments column. If you wish to send more files with the same email message, you can add the drive links in the same cell, separated by the comma.

Easily Add File Attachments with Mail Merge

In the previous step, we used the Google File Picker to select the files from Google Drive. This is slightly tedious more so as you have to repeat the steps for every row in your Mail merge sheet.

There’s an easier way though for adding attachments to merge. Instead of using the File Picker, you can simply put the name of the file in the File Attachments column. The addon, at the time of sending the email, will search your Drive for that file and attach it to the email message.

If you have multiple files in Google Drive with the same name, you can specify the folder path where the file is located. The syntax is \\Folder A\\Folder B\\filename.ext

google-drive-file.png

I want to show you one more technique for quickly attaching files to your Mail mere sheet. Go to Addons > Mail Merge > Add File Attachments > List Files in Google Drive Folder. Now select the parent folder in your Google Drive and the addon will generate a list of every file it found inside that folder, including sub-folders.

Now switch back to the Mail Merge sheet and you’ll notice that a drop-down has been added to every cell in the File Attachments column. This makes it even easier for you to select files from Drive.

mail-merge-animated-gif.gif

So we are all set. Go to the mail merge menu, choose Configure and run merge (video) to send your emails that all have unique attachments. You’ll find a copy of the emails in your Gmail Sent items.

For detailed instructions, please watch the video tutorial.