Thursday, 15 March 2012


I was going to save this playlist for another day, but I'm not going to have time to post anything on here for a while, so I'll use it as a sort of stop-gap instead. Things have been preetty busy recently - I'm just finishing my first week of work experience with an academic publishing company (progress! careers! etc.) but it's unpaid, so in order to earn money and keep my old job open for when I finish I'm working weekends as well. I've also just found out I've got a freelance job writing educational materials for A Level English Lit students - which is ace - but I had a look at the amount of work I've got to do for it and I'm feeling pretty intimidated. The example pack is eighty pages long. IT'S GOING TO BE LIKE MY DISSERTATION ALL OVER AGAIN. Except better, because I'll be getting paid.

So enjoy this playlist, all the songs of which are of the noise-pop-lo-fi variety. Some old(ish), some new, all good. I always find this kind of music very reminiscent of summer and, let's face it, we could probably do with a bit of sunshine. Enjoy! I'll see you soon!

1. Think of You - Bleached
2. Tell the World - Vivian Girls
3. Hey Cool Kid - Cloud Nothings
4. Seance on a Wet Afternoon - Girls' Names
5. Dreaming - Seapony
6. Please Be My Third Eye - La Sera
7. Beachy Head - Veronica Falls
8. Love Fade - Tamaryn
9. Tea Lights - Lower Dens
10. Summer of Hate - Crocodiles

Saturday, 10 March 2012


I've been signed up to Pinterest for a while, but I'm only just figuring out how it actually works. I particularly like how straightforward it makes sharing images, so I don't find myself worrying about the best way cite them (although I guess you don't exactly have to follow MHRA guidelines on this one).

I thought I'd used my new-found Pinterest skillz to share some of the hacks on Ikea's 'Lack' range. Like the items themselves, these customisations are everywhere. There's even a website dedicated to sharing the innovative ways in which people have altered theirs. We've got the coffee table version, although we use it as more of a 'media centre'/sideboard. I'm not trying to push this as the world's worst hack, I'm just letting you know what we do with ours. So.

The table definitely serves its purpose, but it's so beige! So vanilla! So pale it almost disappears into the wall! I'd really love to paint it red so it stands out a bit more and I reckon it would go well with the dark wood furniture we've got. Apparently, other people have been far more imaginative with theirs though.

Source: via Nicola on Pinterest

This one uses printed textiles and castors. Wheely imaginative!

This little Lack was covered in an old shower curtain! The copper colours look ace. Water brilliant idea!

I think this one's my favourite - they've created loads of multicoloured, horizontal lines using washi tape. It certainly s-tickles my fancy!

Enough puns. For a few more, clicky!

Wednesday, 7 March 2012


More new music! Poliça are the brainchild of Gayngs founder, Ryan Olson and combine swarming beats with a really distinct vocal sound. Their debut album 'Give You the Ghost' came out in the US just before Christmas and is scheduled for UK release on the 23rd April.

In terms of similar artists, they're reminiscent of a bigger-sounding, more atmospheric Glasser or White Hinterland but, whilst they're definitely of the same chillwave/post-dubstep leanings, the decision to have two drummers makes for a more engaging sound and, as you might expect, a more absorbing live presence (I saw White Hinterland play not long after 'Kairos' came out and was hugely disappointed, partly because the songs lacked this theatre live).

Bon Iver's Justin Vernon recently described Poliça as 'the best band I've ever heard' and there is certainly a lot of hype surrounding their music (Jay-Z has also said how much he admires their sound); however, singer Channy Leneagh’s vocals appear to be splitting opinion on YouTube for their heavy use of auto-tune. Personally, I think the conspicuousness of this effect works powerfully to implicate a drama and disjointedness to their sound, particularly on the single 'Lay Your Cards Out' (shown top). Despite this, I'm not sure whether a whole album of it would be as effective - whether it becomes more of a gimmick than a dynamic part of the music. Admittedly, it's pretty hard for me to know for sure until I've listened the entire album, but, based on the strength of what I've heard so far, I look forward to finding out.

Saturday, 3 March 2012


When I was at uni, the shop round the corner from our house sold two bottles of wine for £3.50 (we called the shop 'Peanut & Die', but that's a story for another time). These very reasonably priced beverages fuelled excellent nights both in and out but, as you might expect, they tasted fucking dreadful. The rosé, in particular, was somewhat comparable in flavour to engine oil. If only, I would think, there was a way to make it taste nice, whilst still allowing us to get pissed for a pittance! If only I had known about this cake!

That's right - a cake! With wine! And chocolate! Even better, the more layers you create, the more wine you can put in. This cake is ace - it's really dense and sticky, and the taste of the wine remains only as a slightly boozy perfume, nothing more. It also looks like a giant Oreo, which can't be a bad thing. The recipe can be found here on Smitten Kitchen and, judging by the 650 comments, I'm not the only one that thinks it's a sweet combination.

I made this as a birthday cake for Dave's granddad (also a wine fan) and, because it's not one of those cakes that rises a lot, I managed to jam it very neatly into a biscuit tin. So, in addition to my existing litany of brilliant things about this cake, I'd also like to add that it's very portable.

There's also a rather nice mascarpone cream that goes with it which I used to sandwich the layers together. I would, however, completely condone eating it by itself. Or maybe you could dip some fancy biscuits in it. Or just rub it all over your face. Your call.