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Onion Talking: James Cook’s Adventures in Ausland Part 2

28 Feb
© James Cook / Media Curve

© James Cook / Media Curve

If you’re a die hard fan of The Mighty Boosh or a lover of alternative music crafted with care for the details, chances are you’ve heard of James Cook. If you haven’t, then perhaps you haven’t been reading TVO properly these last five years.

With his new album out now, Cook has returned to the London music scene in recent months, and sat down to talk to TVO’s editor-in-chief Paul Holmes, about his past, present and future in a revealing two-part interview, ahead of the next round of his club night, Outsiders, on February 26th.

Part One was shared with you in mid February, and you can read the second part of our discussions below…

History tells us that the most famous of men named James Cook sailed thousands of miles across largely uncharted areas of the globe, mapping lands from New Zealand to Hawaii to an unprecedented level during his voyages of discovery.  There’s a sense of irony in the way his namesake – cult musician James Cook, formerly of NEMO, has traversed the globe over the past decade.

“The last ten years have been pretty crazy to be honest,” Cook tells TVO, as we continue our first in-depth catch-up since James performed at The Velvet Onion Live night almost three years ago.  “I started touring in 2004,” he continues, “when I was the guitarist in IAMX for about a year. We travelled across Europe, Russia and the USA – a rotating line-up featuring Chris Corner, Noel Fielding, Sue Denim, Dee Plume, Julian Barratt, Julia Davis and myself.  It was an amazing year, and the first time I started earning money from music.  Unfortunately,” he adds, “I couldn’t remain in IAMX because I had to concentrate on NEMO.”

© James Cook

© James Cook

NEMO were the electro-tinged indie darlings who released three albums in four years, concurrently with the televisual run of The Mighty Boosh, with which they were closely linked.  While they never cracked the mainstream in England, the band were particularly successful across Europe, taking James to Germany, Poland, Austria, Switzerland and the Czech Republic.  However, James decided to disband NEMO in 2008, and move to Berlin.

“I started touring solo,” he recalls, “with just a laptop and electric guitar. This actually enabled me to be even freer with my movements, so I continued my European travels as well as venturing further away to the Americas, visiting Uruguay, Argentina, New York and LA.  I was mostly invited to these places, or I knew people there and sought out gigs and travel. Myspace allowed NEMO to have fans all over the world, so it was a relief and a dream come true to be able to travel through music.”

All of this travel enthused his latest record, Adventures in Auslandnamed after the German word for ‘abroad’. “It can also mean ‘outside’,” Cook notes. “Or ‘otherness’.  Wanderlust is addictive. Once I had a sniff of that lifestyle, I was hooked! There was no question of me not taking every opportunity to escape the comparative confines of London, and the experiences gained from all this travel fed directly into the new album. Songs were written and recorded across several years in LA, Montevideo, Buenos Aires, Prague, Berlin, Vienna, Genova and London, now I’m based here again.”

© James Cook

© James Cook

Adventures in Ausland marks James’ second full length solo album, following 2012’s Arts and Sciences and 2013’s covers EP Reverse Engineering.  With three NEMO albums and the full-length record by side-project The Dollhouse behind him, however, the album is technically his sixth complete record, and arguably his best work yet.

“The feedback has been great so far,” Cook states, “which is obviously why you continue releasing new material. The aim is to constantly improve and grow, and hopefully never repeat yourself. I think I am physically unable to repeat myself artistically. I never make the same album twice, and have never even used the same method and techniques twice. I always use new and different musicians and instruments, and the process of recording is as important as the writing stage. It’s basically a series of filters, like distilling alcohol like some sort of electro/chemical process.”

Well, quite. Indeed, the album adds brass elements to Cook’s impressive canon, The usual degree of classy strings and James’ curious ability to sound both impassioned and distant at the same time remain, but this album feels less immediate and more mature than ever before.  James’ natural influences – Lou Reed, David Bowie, Scott Walker – remain at the heart of his work, and as the years have progressed, other artists have crossed James’ path and made an enormous contribution to his style. TVO notes that there appear to be strong traces of Neil Hannon’s work across Cook’s catalogue, and James is quick to own up to an admiration for the songwriter.

© James Cook

© James Cook

“It’s hard to disguise formative influences,” he notes, “and the first two Divine Comedy records were definitely a big influence on me, and it took me a while to shake the influence off! I initially discovered them whilst living in Paris and was blown away by something that seemed to me to come from another universe. I then investigated Scott Walker and Jacques Brel as a result of listening to them, so I owe Mr Hannon quite a debt!

The mention of Brel draws conversation to an intriguing aspect of Adventures in Ausland: Cook’s voice has often been compared to Marc Almond, and the album features a new interpretation of Brel’s magnificent Jacky, which was infamously given a camp disco makeover in the early 90s. James was aware that this could draw closer comparisons to Almond’s work, but his love for the original song overrode any reservations he had. It was time, he suggests, to finally do it justice.

“Brel was one of the 20th century’s greatest songwriters,” James explains. “People like Scott Walker brought his amazing songs to an English speaking pop audience in a way he could never have done himself. However, as a university student of politics and French, I became obsessed with how badly his songs are actually translated into English. Most of them totally miss the point, or just simply don’t make much sense, and it is perhaps impossible for anyone who doesn’t speak French to understand that.”

“They’re very satirical songs,” he continues. “Very personal, very dark and very funny, so doing a proper translation is really no mean feat. I had always dreamt of doing my own modern translations of his song. Scott Walker’s version of Jacky was my main reference, but so was Momus 1986 version, Nicky.”

“People have been saying I sound like Marc Almond for years,” he sighs. “I’ve never really been a fan. I think that first Soft Cell record is great, but I think it’s more that we had a similar music and cultural upbringing. We definitely share similar tastes and influences in our music, so that’s probably where it comes from. But Marc Almond’s version of Jacky is pretty crap and pointless really, so I decided to pluck up the guts to go for my own version. It’s a very personal song, so you have to make it about yourself – which is why my version is called Jamie, after my childhood name. Then you have to have the appropriate cultural references, and requisite irony, correctly translated and updated. When I sing it live, I update the words to fit current situations. That’s how it should be done.”

© James Cook

© James Cook

We’re suddenly touching on ground that has come up in the Cook’s work previously: a sense of frustration about the abandonment of art and discovery, hand in hand with the rise of technology and the era of disposability. It is something TVO is only too acutely aware of, and James shares our frustration and apprehension about the way society is headed.

“Without sounding too depressing,” he explains, “I genuinely feel we are in some sort of cultural nadir right now. Technology should be allowing us to create more and more insanely mindblowing art, but all we seem to be doing as a collective community is tweeting nonsense, and posting up pics of ourselves, our food and our pets. The idea that we have all the information known to man inside our pockets, is something that would have been inconceivable even fifteen years ago.  Somehow that potential access has frozen us in fear, mediocrity and narcisism.”

“Music has been devalued to virtually nothing,” Cook continues. “Disposable, vacuous art permeates popular culture. Narrative creativity seems to be anachronistic. Attention spans are at an all time low. Our technology is controlling us right now, rather than the other way round. Let’s hope we snap out of this dystopian Orwellian nightmare and take control of our lives and collective destiny!”

TVO proposes that one way independent artists are trying to do exactly that, is by abandoning traditional release structures, and turning to pledge culture to release their work via fundraisers and special releases. Could the future for James involve making albums through this method?

“I am open to it,” he suggests, considering the angles. “I’ll try anything and everything I can with my future releases. I’m currently working on three new albums, and must find new ways for people to experience them. Unfortunately, I have a small fanbase, and am not really very good at self-promotion or asking for money when it comes to my own music. Those Kickstarter type situations seem unappealing to me, somehow, but I’m looking into them.”

There’s an interesting honesty about Cook. He is perhaps, his own worst critic, yet acts also as his own personal champion. Proud of his achievements, but keen to downplay his abilities, there’s a sense of an artist who still has so much left to give and an awful lot more to say. As conversation moves briefly onto science fiction, and Cook and TVO share a mutual moment of Doctor Who admiration, he teases about a treatment he is working on for an animated time-travel detective spy thriller. There’s a sense that he has so much more to give, and TVO could listen to him talk about his plans for hours. Sadly, it is time for James to disappear into the early dusk of a Winter’s day. Before he goes, however, TVO suggests that, in an ideal world, Cook would be utilising his delicious string arrangements, cryptic lyrics and silky smooth vocals on the next James Bond theme. “Oh, god, yeah! That would be another dream come true,” he beams. “But I guess I’ll have to join the queue for that one!”

James Cook returns with Outsiders on 26th March. His new album, Adventures in Ausland is available now via Bandcamp

Onion Talking: James Cook’s Adventures in Ausland Part 1

18 Feb
© James Cook / Media Curve

© James Cook / Media Curve

If you’re a die hard fan of The Mighty Boosh or a lover of alternative music crafted with care for the details, chances are you’ve heard of James Cook. If you haven’t, then perhaps you haven’t been reading TVO properly these last five years.

With his new album out now, Cook has returned to the London music scene in recent months, and sat down to talk to TVO’s editor-in-chief Paul Holmes, about his past, present and future in a revealing two-part interview, ahead of the next round of his club night, Outsiders, on February 26th. The initial results are below…

The story of any cultural movement that shaped the course of an entire industry is always fascinating to hear.  Some stories, however, have yet to be told in any real detail, such as the birth and subsequent explosion of the new wave of alternative comedy and music that existed in tandem at the turn of the millennium, focused primarily in the heart of North London.

One major player in all of this was James Cook – former frontman of cult favourites NEMO, collaborator of Chris Corner and regular guest star with The Mighty Boosh.  For the last six years, Berlin has been Cook’s base, and thanks to large amount of travel, he knows his ‘way around’ LA, Montevideo and Prague, too. But London will always be his real home. 

© James Cook / Media Curve

© James Cook / Media Curve

“This year has definitely felt like some sort of homecoming,” he tells TVO as he strolls the cold streets of a capital knee-deep into Winter. “It feels like home, really. I was born and grew up in Luton and Dunstable, but London was somehow embedded in my subconscious. It was the teenage dream for a musician and songwriter, to head into the Big Smoke!”

Now following a period of several years spent living abroad, Cook has returned to London to make it his permanent home once more, and has already begun finding his feet again with a new regular live night in the works.

Indeed, as TVO caught up with Cook, he was filled with enthusiasm for the opening night of Outsiders – his alternative pop cabaret at Aces & 8’s in Tufnell Park. “The room was completely full,” James exclaims, full of joy. “The audience was great and the night was fun and exciting – for the band as well as the crowd. It was a lovely way to begin the live side of things again.”

Outsiders features Cook hosting a night of, in his terms: “music and nonsense, with a bit of classic pop dj-ing from yours truly”. It’s also an opportunity to see his ever expanding live band, plus special guests every month. Fifteen years after NEMO began their career as part of legendary club night, The System, there’s a sense that his journey has come full circle.

© James Cook

© James Cook

A whole decade has passed since those heady days, when NEMO ran The System as an electro/indie club night of their own.  “It was unheard of back then,” James states.  “The scene blossomed. Robots in Disguise, Chris Corner and Sneaker Pimps… who later became IAMX, The Mighty Boosh, Imogen Heap, Graham Coxon… they were all regulars.”

“We all used to hang out together as friends,” he continues.  “We’d go to each others events, get drunk together, perform, collaborate, and guest in each other’s shows. I remember once performing a song onstage at the Hen & Chickens with The Mighty Boosh, and Julian Barratt pretending to ‘fancy’ me after seeing me perform. He tried to snog me!” He bursts out laughing, and adds: “Much to Noel’s annoyance!”

Cook subsequently shared a flat in Angel with Barratt and violinist Anne Marie Kirby, with whom he still works to this day. “That was between 2003 and 2007,” explains James.  “So it coincided with my touring with IAMX, NEMO’s rise to infamy, and the writing and filming of all three series of The Mighty Boosh.  They kept calling me in for some weird and wonderful cameo…” He adopts an impression: “James Nemo? Are you available to come to shooting 8am tomorrow morning with the Boosh? Today you will be a blue alien nomad. Can you play this Oud?”

Indeed, Cook’s cameos on the show are numerous. He was one of the Ape of Death’s bodyguard mandrills, a Mod Wolf, a mutant postman, magical shaman, dying hipster, a blue tennis player (The Blue McEnroe, no less), and perhaps most delightfully, Kevin Rowland, searching for the New Sound.  His biggest role in the show, came as a blue-faced nomadic minstrel, slave to Rich Fulcher’s Blue King Alan, who is composes a song about Vince Noir being ‘The Chosen One’.

© Baby Cow Productions

© Baby Cow Productions

“We seriously wrote that song together five minutes before we shot that scene,” James reveals.  “Shooting the Boosh was a bit like that. There was always room for people to put themselves into the role, add lines and improvise. That was the reason for so much laughter and hilarity on set. They were truly magical times.”

It is perhaps hard to believe that it’s now over seven years since the third series aired, and almost eight since the Boosh team were making new episodes – a fact that Cook is all too acutely aware of.  “It still feels very recent,” he tells TVO, “but everyone involved has been so creative and busy that it also feels like forever.  So much amazing material has gone out into the world from that little scene of comedians and musicians.”

“I was so glad when TVO came along,” he adds passionately, “to help join the dots for people. In the early days I felt like I was the one constantly talking about the collective hive mind we had. That family feel. We used to go on holiday together, make short films…” He trails off as a near-forgotten memory rises to the surface.  “We made a legendary silent horror film which we shot in France.  It was called ‘La Rose D’Envie’, and featured Julian Barratt, Chris Corner, Sue Denim and myself. Never even released!”

© Baby Cow Productions

© Baby Cow Productions

The creative family has widened, remoulded and become increasingly fluid in recent years, yet at its core will always be two inter-connected groups – that of Ealing Live (a comedy troupe featuring Alice Lowe, Richard Glover, Oram & Meeten, Katy Brand, Simon Farnaby and many, many others), and the Boosh/IAMX collective across the city.

“When you started to write about it in TVO,” James enthuses, “I was relieved that someone else had noticed the connections and references. It means it has been initially documented and recognised, but the full story can and should be fleshed out properly one day.”

“There was so much creative overlap,” he continues, “between the comedy shows, music nights, albums and tv programmes. The energy was bursting out of North London at the time. A lot of it is captured within the art, but there are so many little notes and stories…” He pauses for a moment, then adds with determination: “I would love to write some sort of memoir about it one day!”

James Cook returns with Outsiders on 26th February. His new album, Adventures in Ausland is available now via Bandcamp. Part Two of this interview will follow next week.

IAMX Has Come Back Home

25 Oct

© IAMX / Chris Corner

After months of silence, IAMX has released their new video for Come Home.

As many IAMX fans might know, frontman and singer Chris Corner has unfortunately been battling health problems which caused the band to reschedule several tour dates so that he would be able to recover. While get well wishes poured in, Corner flew back to the UK for extensive treatment but has finally broken the silence to give back the love by releasing a new music video.

Last week, Chris posted a blog update to let fans know of the video release and that it is in no way an official single release, but simply a “gift to you”. The video for Come Home, from the album The Unified Field, was directed and edited by Chris Corner himself, with added help from Janine Gezang during the filming process.

Corner writes that the release of the video pushes him “forward with a feeling of wonder and positivity for the future” and we can only agree with the sentiment. It is a clear sign that the IAMX magic is there in full force.

Enjoy this hauntingly beautiful video below or on Youtube.

Onion Talking: Noblesse Oblige – It’s An Affair Of The Heart

24 May

With a new album out today, The Velvet Onion took the chance to welcome Noblesse Oblige onto the TVO roster. In order to give you, the peelers, a proper introduction we exchanged a few words with the band to discuss the new release and to find out a bit more about who they were.

© Thomas Peter

Valerie Renay and Sebastian Lee Philipp are the duo known as Noblesse Oblige and they came to our attention through their collaborations with familiar TVO names Chris Corner, IAMX and James Cook. Renay and Philipp formed the band after having met at a masked ball in London in 2004 and two years later they released their debut album Privilege Entails Responsibility. The album generated a lot of buzz on the international club scene and cemented the musical success of the band. Noblesse Oblige made the move from London to Berlin in 2007 and began working on their second album In Exile, a move which signalled a change from electro-indie music to chanson pop.

The duo is constantly evolving and their fourth album Affair Of The Heart marks the end of the voodoo inspired area of Malady (2010) and welcomes a Noblesse Oblige that breathes electropop and modern 80s energy. With Affair Of The Heart, the ties between TVO familiars and the band strengthened as the album was recorded at Chris Corner’s Berlin studio Turmwerk and the duo enlisted the IAMX frontman to direct the first single Runaway.

Today the album is officially released and The Velvet Onion had a chitchat with Noblesse Oblige to celebrate the occasion.

Hello and welcome to TVO! For our readers who don’t know much about you, could you describe Noblesse Oblige in one sentence?

Sebastian: We’re a French/German, black/white, hot/cold duo that likes electronic music and red wine.

When you initially met in London in 2004, was it infatuation at first sight or what made you get together and decide to form Noblesse Oblige?

Valerie: I was looking for a musician while Sebastian was already making music with a singer. We instantly ‘clicked’ and started working on songs together. We then had our first gig, went on tour with the Dresden Dolls and got signed by UK label HorseGlue that released our first single the following year. It all happened very fast!

Noblesse Oblige is of course French for “nobility obliges” but how did you decide on that name?

V: I used to do a party called Aristocracy in a London gallery and when the gallery closed Noblesse Oblige was going to be the name of the next soiree… I never found a venue but instead I found Sebastian who instantly liked the name! Continue reading

Runaway With Noblesse Oblige

3 Apr

Electropop duo Noblesse Oblige have unleashed their latest music video, and it’s directed by none other than Chris Corner.

The IAMX star is no stranger to the other side of the camera, having previously directed videos for James Cook, who lent a helping hand to the making of this super-shiny production, which perfectly complements the Human League meets Timo Maas vibe of the track.

You can see the video below.

More Cook

16 Mar

© James Cook

With his European live dates winding down with a final gig in Prague yesterday, James Cook has been busy grabbing a few column inches.

He has just been interviewed by Czech magazine, Protisedi. In the interview, James talks about his myriad of current projects, his time playing with IAMX and Nemo, and the inspiration behind his music. Of his professional relationship with Chris Corner he says, “Chris is one of my best friends, he is a musical and artistic visionary. It was a life changing experience being in IAMX, it opened my musical world and I have never looked back.”

To read the interview in full and to find out precisely what percentage of James’ music comes from his dreams click here.

Cook also features in a podcast from the Estuary Radio Edges Review Show earlier this month. Click on this to have a listen.

Quiet Your Mind At Christmas

24 Dec

As a special treat at Christmas Eve, IAMX has released a video for Quiet The Mind!

The song is a part of the single The Unified Field, which was released earlier this month. So go forth and frolic in the musical treat IAMX has made for you. All directed, shot and edited by Chris Corner and Danny Drysdale in the lovely city of Berlin, and you can enjoy the video below or over at IAMX’s Youtube channel.

You can also watch the video for The Unified Field here, and to make it a true IAMX Christmas – head over to PledgeMusic to listen to and download the free version of Douce Nuit (Silent Night) as performed by Chris Corner himself.

Don’t forget that IAMX will be heading out on tour soon, take a look at the tour dates here to find your nearest one. Merry Christmas!

The Unified Mind

4 Dec


The new IAMX single is officially available for download!

Eager fans can now find The Unified Field, the new single from the forthcoming fifth IAMX album, on all major online stores worldwide.

As we mentioned earlier, the double A-sided single features more than just this track. You will also get two remixes of the song and an additional track called Quiet the Mind.

Furthermore, if you want some visuals to go along with your music – you are in luck. You can watch the recently released video for The Unified Field and simply revel in its cinematic glory.

So what are you waiting for? Head on over to Amazon or iTunes to download your copy!

We Are One In The Unified Field

30 Nov
© Chris Corner

© Chris Corner

At last! The official video for IAMX‘s new single The Unified Field is out now for your viewing pleasure!

While IAMX’s fifth album The Unified Field will be released in early 2013, the first single from the album will be hitting the shelves already on December 3rd. Chris Corner, singer and front-man, explains that the single, which has given the album its name, is based on “scientific theory rooted in quantum physics, that intends to bring together all other scientific theories and to bridge the gaps between consciousness, spirituality and science”. While that whole concept might make your head spin, just know that it fits in just as well at a dance club as in a haunted forest.

The video for The Unified Field has been modified from a short film made by a groups of Australian film makers. Chris Corner reportedly approached the film makers after stumbling upon their work online and loved their stuff. After working together to make some tweaks and modifications – a music video had been made. You can watch the brand spanking new video on YouTube or here below.

As mentioned, the official single release is set for December 3rd but you can already listen to snippets of the songs on Amazon. The double A-sided single will include The Unified Field, remixes of the single and a second track, Quiet the Mind. A music video for the latter will be released around Christmas.

Continue reading

Orphic Music Mysteries

18 Oct

© Chris Corner / IAMX

Art enthusiasts and IAMX fans can now feast their eyes on a Orphic showreel.

Orphic is Chris Corner‘s art collective which makes “images for music”, both still and moving. In this showreel, made by Chris, you can see highlights from music videos made by Orphic (including James Cook‘s music videos!) as well as unseen material from coming music videos.

In true CC fashion, it’s all very stylistic and sharp and it is well worth watching two or three (or ten) times in case you missed something the first time. The video features an IAMX soundtrack so it’s a delight for both ears and eyes.

Watch the showreel on the IAMX Youtube channel or here below.

Moreover, all fans can rejoice because the first single of the new IAMX album is going to be released in early December! The single will be released digitally and the release will have two new songs, two remixes as well as two music videos. As you can see in the photo adorning this post, Chris is already making use of the Pledge money to make these glorious new music videos.

Don’t forget that IAMX is going on tour with their new material in 2013. Six shows have been announced so far but there are plenty more to come. All tickets links can be found at the official tour page.

Mar 28th Ancienne Belgique Brussels, Belgium
Apr 4th Roxy Prague, Czech Republic
Apr 11th Astra Berlin, Germany
Apr 13th Gasometer Vienna, Austria
Apr 18th Electric Ballroom London, UK
May 25th Gagarin 205 Athens, Greece

I Am Successful And Pledged For

5 Oct

© Chris Corner / IAMX

It has been a mere five days since the Pledge project for the fifth IAMX album was launched  and the target was smashed in less than an hour.

Chris Corner‘s solo project managed to reach its initial target within an hour and then quickly doubled and tripled. Corner replied to this response with an eloquent “Fuck me outrageously”. And now, five days in, the meter stands at 353% of target and keeps going up. A staggering number of 1191 pledges have been made as of this moment and this is with another 161 days to go.

Due to this response and high demand, IAMX will be adding more items to pledge for. If you did not manage to snag one of those highly sought after signed CDs or wanted to get your hands on a piece of Chris’ artwork – you now have a second chance. Other items including more Golden Tickets will also be available, this being a ticket which gives you free entrance to all IAMX club headline shows in 2013 and lets you be the first to enter the club.

The new incentives will be available at the PledgeMusic project page at around 6pm (GMT +2) today.

Moreover, there have been additional dates added to the 2013 tour. IAMX are set perform in Greece on May 25th at the Gagarin 205 in Athens and UK fans will be delighted to hear that a London show will take place! Tickets for the show at the Electric Ballroom on April 18th will be released on  Monday, October 8th, at 9am over at Ticketweb.

The current tour schedule looks as follows:

Mar 28th Ancienne Belgique Brussels, Belgium
Apr 4th Roxy Prague, Czech Republic
Apr 11th Astra Berlin, Germany
Apr 18th Electric Ballroom London, UK
May 25th Gagarin 205 Athens, Greece

More shows will be added to the tour schedule so keep yourself updated by looking at IAMX’s  Facebook page and their official website.

Bring Me Back A Pledger

1 Oct


At last, at last – the day has come. The fifth IAMX album is finally available for pre-order!

Today, October 1st, the new IAMX album can be pledged for over here at PledgeMusic. However, that is only the tip of the iceberg. You can not only pre-order the new album but the fans who help with funding have the opportunity to pledge for other amazing items (and events)!

Have you ever fancied owning your very own IAMX stage costume or a signed poster? What about exchanging emails with the one and only Chris Corner? Or you’ve maybe taken it a step further and dreamed of having dinner with him? It’s all there, within your reach.

Posters, lyric-sheets, DVDs, signed guitars and having Chris Corner remix one of your songs (!) and so much more is available. We are already drooling at the mere thought of it all.

Don’t worry, even if you only pre-order the album you will still get the royal treatment. Everyone who pledges will get exclusive, special updates regarding the album which includes artwork and lyrics.

Head over to PledgeMusic now to read more about how pledging works and to see what other grand items can be yours. Be quick though, some items are available in limited quantity.

This is not the only exciting IAMX news. Slowly but surely the band is adding new tour dates for 2013. It is during these shows that the brand new material will be played. It is worth keeping an eye on their Facebook page and their official website to be 100% up to date.  So far the announced dates are:

Mar 28th Ancienne Belgique Brussels, Belgium
Apr 4th Roxy Prague, Czech Republic
Apr 11th Astra Berlin, Germany

There will be many more shows and not only in Europe. Impatient North American fans can rejoice and celebrate the fact that IAMX will come visit and play in 2013. They have started to book an American tour but there are no exact dates are available yet. We promise to keep you updated.

Overwhelmed? Overjoyed? Excited? Check, check, check! Go pre-order the new album immediately and join us as we joyously await the day we have the album in our hands.

I AM Hijacked

10 Sep

© Dominique Houcmant

After what seems like long, endless days where nothing happens, there comes these moments where the stratosphere is bursting with IAMX news.

Firstly, the fifth video journal has been released and this time Chris Corner and IAMX have had their journal hijacked by Danny Drysdale (indie film and music video maker). The fans are treated to a glimpse into the process of recording and writing IAMX5, and we also get to see some glorious footage from the old days.

If you’ve been wondering what made Corner involve more people in the making of this album, this is your chance to find out. This journal is a treat for anyone who’s been longing to hear more tasters from the upcoming album, so if you still haven’t seen this thing of beauty, head over to Youtube or watch the video below.

Secondly, October will mark the beginning of an IAMX crowd-funding campaign which will begin on October 1st; and that’s all the information the fans have been teased with so far. Hold out for the next newsletter from the band to get all the details.

If you’ve been dying to get your mitts on some IAMX merchandise, this is the time to strike! Boutique IAMX is having its summer sale, so head on over to see what bargains you can find. You have until September 30th to shop ’til you drop!

Last but not least, new shows have been announced in Istanbul and Ankara. Delighted fans will be able to see CeeCee and the band at the end of November. YOu can read more about the current shows and find out more news at IAMX’s official website.

Chris is Cornered

20 Jun

It’s that time of the month again when we are let into the world of IAMX.

As we have mentioned frontman Chris Corner has been uploading some exclusive footage of himself, his band and any one/thing that crosses his path in his video journals.

This fortnight Chris is put under the spotlight, as band-member Janine Gezang represents the fans and asks those probing questions we’ve wanted to ask like: Will US fans see him again? Does Chris like a doobey? And of course – will Chris ever make it down the aisle?

“My music, my songs are my children – and my fans of course – and they take up too much of my attention and energy to put human life into the world”

Have a look at CeeCee’s answers in his journal below and you can find all his previous videos on the official IAMX YouTube Channel!


21 May

© Chris Corner

Chris Corner of IAMX has released the first of his series of video journals and he is certainly living up to eXpectations.

The twisted, poetic mind of Corner is finally going to be brought to life after we’ve followed his blog for a number of years – a blog which has awarded him nicknames such as ‘Capslock Corner’ and ‘Heir CeeCee’. The former speaks for itself, but to have a read of what Chris’ mind has jotted down in the past, take a look on IAMX’s official page.

Now, Chris has posted a video introducing what is to come from his bi-weekly video-journals.

“You will see music, you will see video, you will see art, you will get an insight into how we make music, how we survive as musicians, how we create independently and how we hold our spirit in a very difficult business”

This is video-blogging like you’ve never seen it before. To watch what is to come, have a look at the aforementioned video below.

Echarse Una Siesta Con IAMX

13 Mar

© Levi Lenaerts

Good news for all IAMX fans – the band is scheduled to play shows again later this year!

If you have been following IAMX on their Facebook page or through Chris Corner‘s blog, you are fully aware that the 5th IAMX project is underway. While we all patiently wait for brand new music, we can already now make sure we get ourselves a healthy dose IAMX later this year.

The band is scheduled to perform at Siesta Festival in Hässleholm, Sweden on June 3rd. The three-day festival has a line-up featuring IAMX, Death Cab For Cutie and The Hives so why not head down to beautiful Sweden? Go to the official website for more information regarding the Siesta festival.

Fear not – if you cannot make it to Sweden then maybe Russia or Ukraine is a better option for you? IAMX will visit St. Petersburg on 1 November and then head to Moscow on 3 November. Ukrainian fans will have the opportunity to see Corner play live on November 10th when they perform in Kiev.

Keep your eyes peeled for more news regarding live shows and who knows – if you are lucky enough maybe you will get to hear some of the new material during these shows!

*Editor’s note: The Spanish phrase in the title might be incorrect.

I AM eXpected

9 Feb

© Chris Corner

The sensual IAMX collaborative can been seen around the world a couple of times later this year!

The first being a special evening, said to have been organised by their dear and dedicated fans in Ukraine.
Chris Corner & Co can be found this Saturday in Kiev blasting their usual extrovert sounds and not only that, Alberto Alvarez – IAMX guitarist – will be DJing after the gig!

Find out more right here and as the event states: “let’s remember how we became part of the IAMX FAMILY!”

Secondly, for all our Swedish peelers out there (or dedicated travelers), the band will also be attending the Siesta Festival in May.
Exact dates for IAMX’s slot are unavailable as of yet, but find out the rest of the line up plus anything else you need to know over here!

Keep peeling for all the latest IAMX news as Corner continues to work on the 5th IAMX project and make his various welcoming appearances around the globe!

2011 Pops Off With a Bang!

8 Jan

The final months of 2011 were an exciting time for the Booshniverse. Join us for now for the final instalment of our four-part retrospective as we relive it all over again. . .



October began buzzing with Booshy delights. The month’s start saw previews for the upcoming 25th series of Never Mind The Buzzcocks.  Meanwhile, Matt Berry and Rich Fulcher continued on their North American Snuff Box DVD tour in Canada, Los Angeles, and Fulcher in NYC.

While London Madcaps prepared to get their books scribbled by Noel Fielding and Dave Brown, the BBC were busy at work filming the Victorian spoof drama Bleak Old Shop of Stuff. The series, starring TVO regulars Katherine Parkinson and James Bachman, as well as Stephen Fry, is meant to start airing in the New Year. The Sightseers, the Alice Lowe/Steve Oram film collaboration was also underway by mid-October. For the nostalgic at heart, cult DJ extrodinaire Pogo released “Zoo Zoo”, a Mighty Boosh mash-up.


The first of four TVO Scribblings wristband competitions was announced, with peelers in London, and soon thereafter Edinburgh vying for guaranteed admission to meet the Shambletons. Psycho Delia mixed some tunes, and IAMX fans were pleased to see the band’s triumphant return to a London stage in one hell of a show! Friend of TVO, Hayden Black, saw Goodnight Burbank, his series that started as webisodes with cameos from the likes of Rich Fulcher and John Barrowman, make its North American televisual debut. Familiar face Alan Partridge, the infamous alter ego of Steve Coogan, announced his returning to both radio and TV.

© Steve Agee

Blackpool’s Comedy Carpet was unveiled, Booshy jaunts included! Lucky American peelers got the opportunity to catch the Matt Berry/Steve Agee film Angry White Men as it enjoyed a limited release in California and North Carolina. In yet another bout of nostalgia, Vlad the Impaler returned to the handlebars of Serge and the rest of Kasabian’s musical bicycle.

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A Not-So-Summery 2011…But Here’s A Summary Of July-Sept

4 Jan

When you think of last summer, what do you think of? Rain? Rioting? Well don’t think about that – if your memory fails you, first have a look at our reviews of January to June, and then let’s take a look at what happened in the world of Booshdom from July to September, in Part 3 of our review of 2011...


© Watch

2011 may have been a dreary and somewhat brief summer, but July kicked off with some magic as Dynamo showed off his skills to Noel Fielding, stunning him with a rogue deck of cards right in the palm of his hand!

The comedy world also saw acts big and small peeking out into the non-sunlight as they prepared for the Edinburgh Fringe Festival! It was a busy month for comics, including Rich Fulcher who arranged warm ups left right and centre. As they all profusely scribbled down their work in the build-up to the festival, the musical Booshdom also picked up its pace. Robots In Disguise released their fourth album (funded by their fans!) Happiness vs Sadness. We were eager to listen to it ourselves and bring you a song-by-song evaluation of it.

© Becky Johnson

IAMX were also in the midst of releasing their new single Bernadette and at the same time brought us two alternative versions of the music video – we would expect nothing less from perfectionist Chris Corner!

This summer was also a lucky time for the Velvet Onion in terms of tracking down some great talent. We attended a Q&A with the cast of How Not To Live Your Life, then Richard Ayoade also answered some of our questions following the release of Submarine. Then there was even more excitement with the release of our chat with the delectable Hot Brew!

Someone who’s also always up for a debate is Steve Coogan, who voiced his opinions on Newsnight this month regarding the recent closure of News Of The World!

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Spring Back In Time: A Look Back At April-June 2011

2 Jan

So far our review of 2011 has covered January to March. Today we bring you the sequel: April to June. Aaaah, Springtime…the time of fresh starts and new beginnings! And it turned out to be a very busy time in the Booshniverse too!



April started with the news of Chris O’Dowd’s appearance in The Crimson Petal and The White, a Victorian drama adaptation miles away from The IT Crowd! It was a fantastic production with a great cast and Chris was excellent in it.

The London Comedy Writers Festival took place this month, with input from TVO favourites Alice Lowe, Jaqueline Wright and Colin Hoult. It was a very busy month for Alice, she starred in  Tap at the Window, appeared with Antony Elvin at Popcorn Comedy, and had the pilot  Alice’s Wunderland broadcast on BBC Radio 4. At the time we were lucky to bag an interview with her which you can read here. We also reviewed Jackal films 2010 calendar project.

Colin Hoult announced the second New Adventures show and Paul Foot was in Australia, tweeting as he went.

TVO enjoyed a bit of a spring clean itself in April with a revamp of the TVO Amazon store, making it even easier to cater for all your comedy needs!

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