Friday, 12 September 2008

The Streets - The Escapist

I have long been a fan of The Streets. Not only is the man immensely talented, but he really knows how to craft a track that grows with each each listen.

If you are not familiar with him yet, please change that. Has a fantastic back catalogue, and for a white boy doing rap, he does what his more popular American counterparts do not, he crafts intelligent and thought provoking albums that have more to say than talk about bitches ho's and guns.

I am writing this before I go on vacation, yet I know I will have this on my iPod the entire time...can imagine listening to this whilst on the beach. However I will be getting ready to fly back by the time you read this, so please picture me listening to this, with my amazingly beautiful boy friend by my side sprawled out on a beach towel with waves lapping at my feet.

Thursday, 11 September 2008

My 'Sticky and Sweet' tour: part 4

Thank you for listening to my scary ramblings and incoherent tour plan. I see it so clearly in my head but getting down visuals is not my strong point.
Must be my edumacation is not so good.

Anywho...back to the finale.

After what seems like an eternity of darkness (1 minute) the screens once again come to life. A stomping update of 'Dress You Up' fills the air as video plays of Madonna dancing through out the years. Using tour and video footage inter-spliced with images from past tour back drops we see how the woman has really never stopped dancing.
The song continues as the stage turns into a manic dance floor of different levels. there are dancers at all levels dancing their hearts out as Madonna appears, clad in jean shorts, bangles and a Blondie T-shirt on the very highest. The dancers stop turn and look as she utters those famous words "You can dance...for inspiration". And so begins 'Into the Groove'. She comes down to the bottom level and her and her troupe perform choreography that appears so carefree. As the song end they all come to the end of the platform where she leads the audience "I'm tired of dancing here all by myself, tonight I wanna dance with someone else.....WHERE'S A PARTY!!!!" and so the next song begins in a seamless mix.

The entire song takes place on the catwalk with back flips and cart wheels and Madonna playing leap frog with her dancers. At the end she once again, and for the last time dons her electric guitar and lets the audience that there are four songs left, and they all have to dance dance dance.
She starts 'Ray of Light' and the screens show a video reminiscent of the video for the song, but done as a world tour ending in Malawi. The dancers back flip and hand spring up and down the catwalk in a display more captivating than any olympic gymnastic competition. She ends the song as the opening beats of '4 Minutes' start. The crowd goes crazy as she starts the song, but without the Justin Timberlake vocals which she performs. Half way through the track there is a break and Madonna and crew fall into a break dance dance-off before the song continues as the 'Peter Saves Paris Remix' and the stange turns into club-land with one of the most spectacular laser shows I have ever seen and the star leaves the stage as the dancers rave it up big style.

The screen turns from alight show to a DJ deck. You see a record being put on and the opening beats of 'Music' begin. The screens turn into an equalizer of rainbow colours as Madonna appears in a blue heavily sequined bustier and ripped baggy jeans. The music track as been mixed with Kylies 'Can't Get You Out of My Head' and Madonna sings and prances about the stage with abandon and even does a few lines of Minogue's hit. At the end we hear that ticking clock and that famous ABBA riff comes blaring out. Madonna's dancers rip off her jeans to reveal, yes, a leotard. Once again she sings a few lines from the ABBA hit and as the song comes to a close, and the audience has been whipped up into a frenzy, confetti comes showing down (made from recycled paper of course) and fireworks and lazer light up the sky.

Madonna bows and thanks the audience and disappears into the floor.

Then, after another minute or so there is a commotion on the stage. The Dancers have come back dressed in neon, and looking like extras from 'Fame'. A familiar Guitar riff starts from the dance hit 'The Music Sounds Better with You'. The beat kicks in and the dancers starts doing what appears to be a very 80's dance style. Then out comes Madonna. Wearing what looks like pirate pants with a baggy ripped t-shirt showing her bra and tons of bangles on her arms and beads around her neck, like a 2008 version of 1983 Madonna. She looks out into the audience and shouts "Come On, Come On, Come On, Let's CELEBRATE" and so begins the frenzied keens up that is the final song of the show 'Holiday'. The screen shows various cultures around the world celebrating various holidays, festivals with dance.
At the end a sweating and tired Madonna shouts "Thank you I Love You!" as the stange goes dark.

Wednesday, 10 September 2008

'Skin' Trailer

Based on the true story of Sandra Laing and staring Sophie Okonedo is what I hope will result in her second Oscar nomination.

However the trailer does kind of dash those hopes (it is a small film company mind you) by coming across all too self important. Sam Neil does look mighty fine as does Alice Krige as Sandra's mother (she was wonderful in 'In the Line of Beauty') but there is not a-heck-of-a-lot of performance to see of Okonedo. Here is hoping they are waiting for the film to be released to surprise us all.

Tuesday, 9 September 2008

Just because

My 'Sticky and Sweet' tour: part 3

The stage is dark.

the video screens light up with images on planet destructions. Smoke, fire, animals in traps, pollution, collapsing ice caps, the fur trade, the sun. All edited to a remixed, and re-edited together version of 'Rescue Me'.

Madonna appears with her hair back. She is wearing simple black trousers and a black vest. The stand at a microphone and sings an almost acapella version of 'What it Feels Like for a Girl'. On the screens you see a time line of the various first's for women. From voting to the olympics and so on. The song slowly picks up the beat with the aid of drums and guitar.
Dancers come on and join in with Madonna for a exotic tango version of 'The Devil Wouldn't Recognize You'. The dancers are in couples with Madonna in the lead.
the screens show images of distance. From the streets of New York, to the ocean, across England to London in one long CG shot all the while Madonna and guitar sing an up tempo version of 'Miles Away'.
At the end the lights go down dramatically. You hear the opening few notes of the instantly recognizable 'Open your Heart'.

Madonna, now with a sheer black top over her vest comes out with her dancers. They perform a sexy Spanish version of the song before launching into a flamenco heavy remix of 'Keep it Together' complete with hand claps and percussion. Madonna and the dancers perform complex choreography whilst constantly holding hands up and down the catwalk and stage.

The music stop and Madonna takes a moment to address the audience again. This time letting them all know that they are the one who keep her going and keep her performing. She gives a heart felt thank you before the screens light up with various images of her fans at various shows and public appearances. The opening guitar riff from 'Like a Prayer' fill the stadium and she launches into the original version of the song but with added beats and base. She and the dancers dance about almost freely whilst Madonna dances down the catwalk, looking at fans in the eyes and singing to them before getting the auditorium singing the mid break "Life is a mystery, everyone must stand alone...."
This time Madonna
with no music, just hand claps before ending in an energetic finale.

Sunday, 7 September 2008

My 'Sticky and Sweet' tour: part 2

I bet you were riveted dear readers! Chomping at the bit for part 2 were you?

Well here we are. When we left off Madonna had performed 'Hollywood'.

The guitar from the video interlude is still going strong and we pick out a familiar riff. From the top of a tall staircase that has somehow appeared on the stage appears Madonna in ripped dark denim jean shorts, fishnets, heels and a white wife beater. Her hair is out and messy and she launches into early hit 'Gambler'.
She descends the staircase reminiscent to 'Express Yourself' from the 'Blond Ambition Tour' and rocks out with a troop of dances at the bottom.
This song mixes into a heavily guitar remixed version of 'Causing a Commotion'. On the screens are images of some of Madonna's early nude photo's mixed in with the sex book (all naughty bits covered of course).
There are sparks and smoke going off around her as she dances furiously down to the mid point of the catwalk.

At this point she collapses on the floor. I microphone emerges from the floor and Madge is handed a guitar. She grabs a stool and talks to the audience about heartache and love. She sits on the chair and begins a version of 'Borderline' that starts out lovely and acoustic before getting angrier and thrashier. At the end of the last chorus she screams out a big "F*ck You!!" to a cheering audience.

The Audience starts dancing again, this time to the beat of 'She's Not Me'. Madonna is joined by a male dancer and they dance together (Almost like 'The Waltz of eva and Che' from 'Evita' but sexier). She pushes him away and he goes off via moving platform as female dancers appear from different points of the stage and catwalk. The next song "Thief of Hearts' is remixed with a simpler and harder urban sound. Madonna is thrown boxing gloves and puts them on (still holding onto the mic) and takes on her apponents one by one in a make shift ring.
At the end, the woman are strewn about the floor and there Madonna stands triumphant in victory. She disappears into the floor and once again the stage goes dark.

Part 3 to come......