A Travellerspoint blog


Soul crooner D'Angelo is back after a long hiatus.

Few artists embody the essence of soul better than this cat. D'Angelo made a name for himself in the 90's with albums like "Brown Sugar", "Voodoo" and "Yoda". He has collaborated with some of Hip Hop's finest acts including J-Dilla, Common and The Roots, but his most notorious claim to fame is arguably his music video for the single "how does it feel?" - in which the camera meanders about his naked torso in one single shot for the entire 4 minutes of the song, his ripped bod, sexy lyrics and penetrating vocal range amassed him a mega flock of female admirers, and male haters.

Last night, I queued in the snow at the 02 Brixton Academy for the said artists return to the stage. A capacity crowd enjoyed Bluey Robinson and DJ Stripes before the man himself graced the stage to thunderous applause and hair raising female squeaks - (moisture levels rose instantaneously). The first song started up with the house lights fully lit and focussed on the crowd, leaving the band and it's leader in the shadows, people were standing, squatting, leaning and squinting to make out the silhouette's on stage, everyone (especially the ladies) wanted to see if he's still in as good a shape as he was way back when.

When the house lights retracted back on to the stage, it revealed a cast 8 deep not including the star. The academy shook as the realization struck the masses that they were witnessing one of soul musics greatest modern icons. To say he's lost any of his magic is pure pork pies, sure, he may have put on a couple of kilo's in the booty area, and he was dressed in a ripped curtain, fusing together Gypsy and Gangsta fashion, but D'Angelo is nourishment for the auditory capacity and he didn't want to let his female followers down by denying them some upper torso action.

He played some new tunes off his forthcoming LP and made sure to include classic's like "Devils pie", "Chicken Grease" and a freshly slowed down version of "Sh*t, Damn, Motherfu*ker". His band was tight (as you would expect) - Greece's capital budget tight! His backup singers flowed, and harmonized seamlessly, striking those notes you couldn't imagine hitting without crotch impact.

The highlight of the evening was having a chance to interact and sing along with the legend. One man, one piano and 6000 people singing "Brown Sugar" - falsetto parts for the ladies, and the deep baritone chorus for the men. He played all the classics from "Brown Sugar" sat behind the keys and invited much help from the audience, who were only too happy to chime in. He sent the ladies into a frenzy when he hit the first few notes to "how does it feel?" - much anticipation was felt as to whether or not he was going to strip......... (he didn't).

The man was, and still is pure class. A vocalist with such an admirable scope for control, his shifts between vocal keys seemingly effortless. He fronted the stage with energy and aplomb and engaged with his band members (who were all phenomenally talented in their own rights) in a relaxed, fun way. He played the guitar like a demon, struck the keys with precision and took us all on a vocal journey not soon to be forgotten. He's back! and even now, the day after, I still have the Jonez in my bonez!.

Brixton Academy 02

Jordan Young.

Posted by Eurotourguide 03:10 Archived in United Kingdom Comments (0)

review of London Motor Museum

cars cars cars

If you like motors, then the London Motor Museum is well worth a visit. Quick notes, it is a mere 2 minute walk from Heyes and Harlington railway station which is easy enough to catch from Ealing Broadway station, using platform 3 to get the service to Oxford, took 11 minutes as Heyes and Harlington is the first stop.

It is 10 pounds for entry but if you go the Motor Museum website, they have a link you can follow to get free entry and offer many other promotions associated with the museum. At first arrival, you are met with nice cars in the carpark, upon entry the staff are friendly and informative, sure to make sure you're familiar with the house rules before you set about your car perving.

They have a quaint reception area where you can help yourself to tea or coffee (nice touch), although you can't take your hot brown into the museum. I enjoyed the European section a lot, with 1950's porsche spiders and Ferrari Dino's and old Mercs headlining the garage space. The presence of movie icons like Herby and the Batmobile from the good o'l Michael Keaton days are a nice nostalgic addition.

The museum also has within it's bosom a fleet of impressive custom cars, the museum doubles as a custom car house for TKO the local body car modification team who's mods can run up bills of 80,000 pounds not including car. Matt paint and ridiculously shiny and massive rims are dominating this part of the museum, a military matte green Hum V on 26 inch rims, a BMW M3 coupe on 22's with black carbon matt paint, 2 rolls phantoms completely decked out in all the rap video trimmings.

They have an ssc aero, which a few years ago was the fastest production car in the world, it now ranks second to the Bugatti Veyron supersport and can do in excess of 400 km on the road with a long enough straight, as this particular example was the first off the official production line, it's valued as priceless. 2 lincoln zephyrs from the late 40's flank the mighty aero and hold values of roughly half a million pounds each, they are a snap shot of car design epitomised during the war years, the lines of these cars are as beautiful as their engines are powerful, an example of the first true, road going supercars.

Having felt sufficiently dejected at the enormity of money needed for any one of these beauties, I head into the muscle car and hot rod section, highlights of this section Eleanor, the Shelby gt 500 from the movie "gone in 60 seconds". Not being a huge hot rod enthusiast, I skipped over to the low riders, Chevorelet Impala's and Cadillac coupe de Villes are incredibly low, wide and long, some of these cars have been used in a lot of big artist music video's like Fergie, and Snoop Dog's 'snoop de ville' is here waiting for his next road trip of the UK.

The museum has cars for every taste, what can't be denied is the allure of the Aero, the quality of the classic European cars, the coming together of some extremely powerful and colorful custom rides cars in their respective class groups. Is well worth an hour or two and well worth the tenna

Posted by Eurotourguide 09:11 Archived in United Kingdom Tagged london museum motor Comments (0)

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