Thursday, 28 April 2011

A Bluer Kind Of White...

So, last night was my first gig with Framed, it went well, so many people dancing that even Bob Log III would have been proud, alas, the competition were pitiful, but we've all been there haven't we...doing terrible punk covers while the man (with the beard, i.e Me) in the crowd shouts "CORNED BEEF!" during your cover of Blondie's "Call Me", yeah...

Personally speaking, I wasn't that happy with the venue, I think Van Gogh was on the sound desk, the portly promoter with the ill fitting clothes is up for nominations for the May Pimp Slap award, among many, I enjoyed getting to know the band a bit more aswell, was a good night, however, I made a couple of great stonking mistakes, because I couldn't hear a damn thing from my AC30, I had a laugh watching the other acts...

Now I know my co-guitarist Joe reads this shit, watches the videos on my YouTube channel, it's a talking point he brings up a lot, maybe because my shit is perfect... But on a more serious note, it's always a pleasure to plug in and play in Framed, I'm hoping with future songs I can add more noise using my pedal based device...

But when me, the band, roadie Chris and Rich were wandering the streets of Birmingham, we spoke of how it all came around, how I ended up in a band as good as this and how the pieces all fitted, Kim adding me on facebook because of my guitar pictures, from the Framed keyring in my drink, talking to Kim on Morrisons car park, and then suddenly, here I was, part of this band, I'm thoroughly enjoying it, so thanks for having me, I dunno how they put up with me!

So as I write this, I notice we've hit 3,700 views, hows about that then?

Today though, I was back at work, 1-9.30pm, but you know after all the writing of ideas, discussing, chopping and changing my guitar sounds, repairing stuff etc, a day in Farmfoods seemed exceptionally boring, and it gave me a lot of time to think about anything but the job, the mundane nature of my job was something I'd never realized before, but today it hit me like a cold hard slap in the face, I really do loathe my job...

Tonight, I sat out in the garden listening to U2's "Zooropa" album, I had a JD on the rocks as I mulled over where I'm at...

  • Sudden realization that my job engages me as much as the colour beige
  • I'm in a fantastic band
  • I feel frankly terrible
  • I have solid friends I can rely on
  • I'm only 20 years old, and this year is flying by, quicker than I'd like
  • I'm virtually broke, not earning much a week anymore
and for aslong as The Edge's guitar was shimmering away during "Lemon", I really didn't give two hoots.

As soon as I realized this is about the 6th combination of tablets I take to control everything, I began to worry a bit more, this is a "rest of my life" thing, so please, if you're healthy, treasure it, because seriously, this shit isn't nice.

The side effects to all this make me such a changeable person, however, any close friends will know that music is the only pure force with me that never changes, it's what keeps me from losing the plot at times, being on the brink sort of gives me ideas on what to play, so yeah, look after yourself if you're a healthy git, this is all real and this blog is everything I've ever written on the internet.

Lot's of new music, I may do some more reviews, but on that note, thanks for stopping by!

@LukeClarkeBlog & @FramedOnline on Twitter
I'll always exchange tweets
B Cool

Your Pal

Friday, 22 April 2011

Shoot To Thrill, Play To Kill

'Allo Rabble

How're you all doing? Well, I hope.

It's that time again, where I felt the need to blog, properly like, I'm overly tired and fueled by caffeine and pizza, which is when I write my best stuff, it's been a busy week for me, and I'm doing more of what I enjoy.

  • Minimal hours at work
  • Working alot more on music
  • Sleeping, I like sleeping
Let's be honest folks, the weather here in the UK has been superb as of late, as much as I love seeing the world in the sun, I dislike the heat that comes with it, as it ruins me thanks to the ol' asthma, alas I remain chipper, because of everything that's to come, my fantastically sexy band Framed are headlining this coming Wednesday 27th at The Island Bar in Birmingham, click the image below for details, if any of you are coming, please come see me at the gig, I'll be more than grateful to know readers are following my band aswell

Now, the Tuesday just gone, I paid a visit to my Epilepsy specialist at the hospital in Walsall, naturally after last months severe seizure there were some issues with medication that needed to be resolved and now I've been put onto the 700. Nitro Express tablets, called "Episenta", the side effects are awful and the tablets themselves are the size of the moon, so I'm not looking forward to the side effects of what's going to come of this, there's a lot of chopping and changing going on it works for a short time, but honestly speaking, half the time I don't know whether I'm coming or going, hopefully this will be the last change I have to go through, but it's not pleasant at the moment, I'll be honest.

That same day, I spent about ten minutes kicking my feet up on a bench in the town centre, on my phone, checking my Twitter/Facebook feeds, some random girl sat down next to me, tried to make light conversation, she was plastered with fake tan and had stupidly bleached blonde hair, so I continued to tell her to go away, I'm a charming guy aren't I, dear readers?

Thursday rolled around, and so did Band Practice, Kim has a throat infection, Matt had written off Joe's bike, so it's fair to say, not everyone was on form, and in the rehearsal room, it was bastard hot, the evening was spent complaining about the heat and trying to get the dynamics right, which is difficult because I'm not musically in the know, being self taught and all that, and I'll be honest I just wasn't with it for some reason, we have our pre-gig practice Monday hopefully and then it's my first gig for a very long time, so obviously, I'm a tad nervous.

Though I'm finally getting all the sounds I want, I just think it was the heat messing with me, I was struggling, so I'll have to sort that out...

I got alot of fantastic feedback for the new "Luke Clarke Blog: Pimp Hand Award" so I'm taking nominations for May 2011! 

How To Nominate

  • #LukeBlogPimpHand hash tag on twitter, with your nomination and why
  • Tag me on FB, with your nomination and why
  • Comment Below, with your nomination and why
Simple? You can make a difference!

Look out for a YouTube tutorial of how to make my tasty Superb Owl Nachos, lounge in the sun with a bowl of LC's Superb Owl Nachos!

That'll do you for now!
B Cool
Your Pal
Luke Clarke

Saturday, 16 April 2011

Birmingham, Again

Hello again!

So, here I am in a classic readable, less picture-infested format, I hope you're all doing well, because this is part two, where I actually do some writing!

It has indeed been a very busy week, doing almost 40 hours again at work, I've lost track of individual days, for instance I'm unsure that it's actually Saturday night, and I'm here writing to you wonderful people, but hey, big news, we've hit 3,500 views.

Pretty good eh? I think that's a rather good number, because I don't know that many people and there are views coming in from all over the world constantly, Aria Guitars even tweeted me about my tribute to japan, and a lot of views now are coming in from Twitter and other sites I've never even heard of, again thank you all for coming here and reading my ramblings, I do appreciate you being here!

As you all know, I have a telephonic device called an iPhone, but for a while I've noticed little things, a touchy headphone jack, load speeds, battery life and the other day, the mute switch went haywire, so yesterday me and my old pal Rich went into Birmingham, to the Apple Store in the Bullring, I was given an appointment, and I was promptly seen by one of their "Geniuses", who instead of going on about repair and all that, just replaced the phone outright, I'm rather shocked, the service was superb, everything was flawless, before lunch, I'd got a brand new iPhone 3GS.
Thanks, Apple Store Birmingham!

So with that done, I bought The Saboteur and Dead Rising on the Xbox 360, and we headed back home, where Rich pilfered a boatload of my music, we watched Top Gear and played The Saboteur, which is officially the most cliché game on the planet, but good, nonetheless, yet to play it some more, again, lack of time and effort this week.

Onto bigger news, Framed are gigging, Wednesday April 27th at The Island Bar, We are headlining this and this is Framed's first gig with me joining them on guitar, so it's certainly exciting, but keep your eye on the Official Page, I'm told we are recording this coming week's rehearsal, I've got lots of new ideas though, so some exciting times lie ahead!

Also had some questions about my health, I have the hospital this week, so I will fill you in, but on the whole, I'm feeling very well, thank you, reader.

There's more to hearing than meets the ear.
Your pal
Luke Clarke

Three Of A Perfect Pair


Now, last blog I signed off with the sentiment that I would be giving my two cents on some new albums, I've done alot of listening to a whole host of albums I have added to my collection. Below I will list the albums, I'll score them out of ten on how engaging they were, and put the number of memorable tracks out of how many are on the album.

Buckethead & Travis Dickerson - Left Hanging
Overall Score: 8/10
No. Of Memorable tracks: 5/7
Comments: It's an album of outtakes from "Population Override", the reason it didn't get the 10, is because there aren't entire tracks that keep me listening, however it doesn't stop it being a intriguing listen to what was cut from a fantastic album. "Terra Firma" is a good 'un

Foo Fighters - Wasting Light
Overall Score: 5.5/10
No. Of Memorable tracks: 3/11
Comments: The newest FF album is the only one I can say I've listened to and doesn't make my brain hurt due to it's dullness, however, it really isn't memorable, it's the same old Foo's, "White Limo"and "Alandria" are all I can recall off of it.

REM - Collapse Into Now
Overall Score: 8/10
No. Of Memorable Tracks: 5/12
Comments: a typical R.E.M album, but I'll be honest, it was a nice listen, I've not listened to it more than once, but it was a nice upbeat album and had a great feel to it, recorded at Hansa Studios in Berlin, it may not be an "Out Of Time". but I really enjoyed it, call it easy listening.

Cee Lo Green - The Lady Killer
Overall Score: 10/10
No. Of Memorable Tracks: 10/15
Comments: not normally my territory, but there aren't many people who can put a modern wallop on the old Detroit Motown sound like CLG can, this album had me listening from start to end, real talent you don't hear in popular music these days, stellar arrangements and brilliant lyrics.

King Crimson - Heavy ConstruKction (3 Discs)
Overall Score: 10/10
No. Of Memorable Tracks: All of 'em
Comments: Yes.

So, now my album thoughts are out of the way, how are you? jolly good.

Now, I've been very busy, hence why I haven't posted in a while, listening to music, working, socializing, songwriting, improving legato etc etc, however, I thought of a new monthly featurette I'm going to introduce here and now...

The "Luke Clarke's Blog: Pimp Hand Award", this award will be going to the person or people that most deserve a firm pimp slap to eradicate them from the world for a while.

As a member of various guitar, media, music and general entertainment websites, there has been one person who consistently keeps getting utterly pointless headlines, constantly holding a spot on the homepage now his bands new album is out, his smug, hairy face, ruins my day every time I log on and see another "(April's winner) runs a bar across some railings because the noise made him smile" or how (April's winner) is ranked alongside Bob Dylan, Robert Plant, Lemmy in this months "Classic Rock: 100 Greatest Songwriters".

His voice annoys me, his face annoys me, his constant publicity annoys me, his instant "God" status annoys me, and for that reason. Dave Grohl, you win the LCB Pimp Hand Award for April 2011, your pimp slap is in the post, get back in "Them Crooked Vultures" and shut up.

Rant over.
Blog Part 2 Coming Soon

Friday, 8 April 2011

I Keep On Walkin'

Hey Empire

I hope you're doing well, it's the end of the week and I thought you were due another blogging extravaganza and as usual, I shall deliver!

I'm doing well thanks, this week has been a bit of a slog to say the least, for me anyway I'm used to doing 16 - 20 hours a week, but this week I've done 32! That means more wonga though, cause and effect.

I honestly wish there was more to say for this week, but there hasn't been a fat lot going on I've been doing alot of chilling out though, Gaming with my sister on Xbox Live, seeing her gradually improve on GTA: The Ballad Of Gay Tony, both of us sharing frustration on these missions which I don't recall being as hard as they are, but I must commend Rockstar Games, The Ballad Of Gay Tony & The Lost and Damned were really well made, well paced out add-ons, I love 'em personally.

However, onto what I was going to say, we left the game on pause, and we heard this choir in the menus, so we left it to build up, and it's this amazing ten minute ambient mix, it's beautiful and so soothing, I can't describe it, so here you go, if you go to the actual YouTube page, you can listen to it, or download the full 10 minute MP3, add RainyMood during a late night to really just chill out, or just listen to it as you walk around, it slows the world down. I very rarely say the word "Bliss"

"The MP3 File Was THIS Big, Luis!"

In other news, Rob, over at Rob Cotton's Blag, is seemingly stealing all of my ideas, and it's very nice of him to put a disclaimer of this at the bottom of his little get up, but I tell you lot, his blog is coming along very nicely. It's a great feeling to know that people like Rob and others out there are blogging and using ideas they see here on my blog, which itself had humble beginnings. Big thanks people!

 It's always a pleasure, I'm always thinking away as to what I could write here, this blog serves as more than just a public blog, but as my own personal journal too.

A quick update on Framed, things are going well. I took a couple of my own tracks into practice on Monday, and I seemed to get the vibe that the band really enjoyed them.

Soundscape transition between songs.

Now I've just brought Buckethead & Travis Dickerson's "Left Hanging", the outtakes from Buckethead's "Population Override"album. Population Override is one of my top albums of all time, so I'm rather looking forward to what was actually cut from the album, full review of that and Crysis 2 next blog hopefully!

That's all you're getting for now!
Your pal
Luke Clarke

Friday, 1 April 2011

New Albums Galore!

Albums galore, empire!

This past week at HMV Walsall, there was a blowout sale on some really classic albums, a few of which are pictured here, but most of which cannot be shown, because of how many me and Rob actually brought in this crazy offer, the CD's ranging from £3-£6, which if you ask me, is pretty damn good, and I still love physical media, the feeling of reading the booklets and slipping the disc in and cranking up a new CD, that feeling.

These things were cheaper than they would be on iTunes, pretty cool eh readers?

So, how're we all doing? lovely stuff, onwards and upwards.

This week, I've been listening to alot of music, and I mean a lot (not as much of course as Rob, who hit 50k on Last.FM the other night) alas, where he hits one milestone, I hit another, I reached 1,000 Buckethead plays, the penultimate track being his classic, "Jordan", well chuffed, however that isn't even half of the amount of U2 plays that I have, I love Last FM, I dunno why but when I look at my music after a particularly long listening session, there is a sense of achievement, seeing that number at the top gradually climb, music's great ennit?

So, my surprise albums of the week?
Jay-Z - The Black Album
Pulp - Different Class
Daft Punk - Discovery
KC & The Sunshine Band - The Very Best Of
ZZ Top - Tres Hombres

However, what I want to write about is my biggest disappointment of this stack of albums, I purchased Muse - The Resistance, because of all the lovely things I hear about Muse, all of these years however, I've never listened to them, except "Plug In Baby" which I listened to once or twice eons ago, now onto the main point.

I played this album start to finish, expecting to be dazzled by an alternarock masterpiece by this trio of blokes, however it's quite the opposite, the first track had me, but each consecutive track lost me  because well, it was distinctly over produced and really wasn't what I would class as rock music, it was more of a case of Classical style arrangements played with synthetic instruments by Muse & Friends, I wish I had something more to say about this album, but I just don't, I found it very bland and disappointing considering all of the hype that came with it. Now I might get slammed for this, but sorry lads if you tell me "make a better rock record than this", I think I could because I'd class "The Resistance" under anything but Rock, sure there are some great compositions on there, and with the London Philharmonic, The Resistance would be superb, I think I know what I'm on about, being a connoisseur of King Crimson/Robert Fripp/ProjeKcts...

Lot's of work being done on guitar, some good sounding stuff happening, more in-depth blog coming soon... things for you to click below!

Framed - The band I play in!
My YouTube Channel!
Rob Cotton's Blag
Twitter! - I Always tweet back!
Last FM

That should cover it
Until next time, your pal
Luke Clarke