Music: #NowPlaying

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Music

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When I used to present my student radio show back at university, every week alongside it I would post the setlist and music I played out. Now without it, I try to post my favourite tracks and artists every now and then to share what I’m listening to. Below are three bands and tracks that are being put on repeat this week.

Giant Peach – Wolf Alice

A four-piece that I’ve been following for a while now, and am very happy to see them finally receiving some much deserved limelight after an organic and natural growth as a group. It’s hard to pin down a genre for Wolf Alice, but after seeing them live at Shepherd’s Bush Empire the other week, I don’t think that’s a problem. For a band that have only just announced their debut album – ‘My Love Is Cool’ – I couldn’t begin to apprehend the support and atmosphere that followed their electric set in West London. Below is one of the singles from the album, Giant Peach.

Everybody’s Gonna Let You Down – The Vaccines

Again a band I’ve been fond of for some time, and with a string of releases of late ahead of their upcoming second album ‘English Graffiti’, including the latest single Dream Lover, I’ve been taken back to an EP brought out between the two. Everybody’s Gonna Let You Down features on the ‘Melody Calling’ EP and is a track that has just got better with each play. The Vaccines do guitar pop so well, and I can’t wait to (at some point) see them live and witness what will hopefully be a punching set of pop guitar and catchy drum beats. However this track is a little different though. It still has a riff you could play on repeat, but with the combination of more sombre lyrics and sounds than we’re used to it makes for one of the more intriguing Vaccines tracks.

Nobody’s Empire – Belle and Sebastian

I heard snippets of this track from the Glaswegian band on numerous occasions before fully immersing into the album and of course this single itself. With a lot of play time, particularly on BBC 6music, it has become a current favourite of mine for the time being, and for once I can’t quite pinpoint why. A song where I think I actually prefer the verses to the chorus, this melodic track definitely has the right ingredients. Have a listen and see what you think.

Tour de Yorkshire: Jerseys Unveiled

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Sport

If you’re not a cycling fan, or just simply not aware, the first weekend of May sees Yorkshire host its very own three-day cycling race after what can only be described as an extremely successful couple of days launching last year’s Tour de France. I’m a little disappointed to say the least that it won’t be heading through Sheffield this time (after such a huge turnout last summer) although I will be eagerly awaiting the race which has some of the ‘bigger’ teams in racing involved.

For every race though, you need jerseys, to distinguish the leading cyclists of the various categories. In the past few days these have been unveiled by the Tour, and I have added them to this blog post below. As well as the three main jerseys you get in most races, albeit a variety of colours from race to race, the Tour’s twitter account has stated that there will be a “groundbreaking announcement” tomorrow regarding the final jersey, something not seen before in cycling – so keep your eyes peeled.

Leader’s Jersey

TDY_Leaders Jersey

Climbers Jersey

TDY_Climbers Jersey

Sprinters Jersey

TDY_Sprinters Jersey

RIBA Awards Shortlist 2015

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Architecture / London

Earlier this month, 68 buildings were shortlisted for the 2015 RIBA awards in London. I have compiled just a few of my favourite ones from the list below, consisting mainly of the buildings I had noted before the shortlist was announced. As well as these projects from London specifically, I may create a post producing a list from elsewhere around the country as well.

University of Greenwich: Library & Academic BuildingHeneghan Peng

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NEO BanksideRogers Stirk Harbour + Partners

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The FoundryArchitecture 00

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Two Pancras SquareAllies and Morrison

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Mews House Suzanne Brewer Architects

Mews-House_Suzanne-Brewer-Architects_©Tom-Lacey

Kew HousePiercy and Company

Kew-House_PiercyCompany-London_Jack-Hobhouse

Concrete HouseStudio Gil

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New Sheffield United Kit – 15/16 Season

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Sheffield United FC / Sport

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Today’s game against Port Vale see’s Sheffield United wear, and launch, the new strip for the 2015/16 season. What has been described by the club as an ‘interpretation’ and hark back to one of the United’s earliest kits, has clearly drawn many varied and strong opinions from the fans within just hours of its release. Firstly, I’d like to say that in my opinion it’s a very smart kit. If the image above shows the away kit (not sure if is away or the goalkeeper kit from this photo) then it’s fantastic, and will be one of the best we’ve had in recent times. But, and it’s a big one at that, the home strip is not Red and White – so I’m not a happy Blade this afternoon! And to make it worse, red shorts and socks. For me (and I know this will vary amongst fans) the kit should be classic red and white stripes, black shorts and white socks – maybe allowing for slight variations like when we had the 02/03 Le Coq Sportif ‘Desun’ shirt for example.

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As you can see from the above photo of Jose Baxter slotting home the penalty in the first half of this afternoon’s game, the red stripes are barely visible from just a few feet away, never mind from the stands. As the teams came out onto the pitch this afternoon, my twitter feed was full of people questioning if it was just a plain white shirt as they couldn’t tell from the back rows of the ground. To me, it looks more like a Nottingham Forest away kit than a Blades one.

A question I have, is why can’t there be some sort of poll for the fans to decide on the kit each year. I’m pretty sure a few seasons back we had one, perhaps maybe further back than I think. Below I’ve added an image of what I would like from a Sheffield United kit. It’s only a basic design as I quickly put it together, but black shorts, white socks and smart red and white stripes, as I said earlier. I would like to see what other fans think a United kit should be, or any images from other fans of potential strips.

SUFC Adidas

Artist’s House in Hampstead

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Architecture / Design / London

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I have just discovered this new house in Hampstead by architects Guard Tillman Pollock, designed for a local artist, that harks back to modernist 30’s buildings dotted around the area. The minimalist sculptural form matches the massing of the street, and a main design point is a fabric screen that stretches over the street-facing facade. The minimal design continues throughout the house, with spaces for the making and showing of the owner’s artwork throughout. Despite contrasting stylistically to it’s neighbouring buildings, in my opinion the design sits well in its environment due to the thoughtful scaling and massing, and it would be intriguing to see it in person.

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