Ceaseless pursuit of “the next big thing” at the more prosaic end of music journalism has proved as successful as water divining in the Atacama dessert. Occasionally though a band emerges which unites writers and audiences in both critical acclaim and expectation for development. TOY presently occupy that position.
In the end, it wasn’t the union jack painted faces, “Team GB” hash tags or unpredicted boasts of tickets for an obscure event in a remote London hamlet that gave the games away; it was the tears.
A few years back, then Labour MP Tony McWalter rose to his feet in a packed House of Commons chamber to ask Tony Blair if he could briefly outline his political philosophy? Unusually for a master of performance Blair was utterly stumped. One explanation for this simple unpicking is that the only honest answer to the question was, and remains: “being the winner”.
Following the drenched hysteria of an extended bank holiday weekend, the looming two-dayer will most likely see quiet nights in front of the television and an opportunity to notice that the contemporary British talk show has reached its garish, prosaic, nadir.
During a recent Foreign Office ceremony our ever inclusive Foreign Secretary invited questions from the floor. Without hesitation a distinguished, redheaded woman offered enquiry. No academic or think tank boffin alas, this piper-upper was none other than the (relatively) new Argentinian ambassador to London, HE Alicia Castro.
Outwardly there’s never been a better time to be a female musical artist. Adele, PJ Harvey, Florence, Jessie J and others command vast audiences and remuneration. But layers of gender specific conditionality are still applied.
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