Monday, 30 June 2014

Gorgon City - Original Penguin Session

Gorgon City sit firmly at the forefront of the recent British House explosion.  The single 'Ready For Your Love' gatecrashed the UK top 5 at the beginning of the year and new single 'Here For You' featuring Laura Welsh which is released this week is set to go even higher in the charts.  This is a prime example of an act caught at the precise moment they go stratospheric as part of the Original Penguin Plugged In Series which takes place in London’s The Hospital Club and this 'Here For You'performance captures the act in intimate surroundings.

The series sees the most creative pioneers take to the stage to play up close and personal shows, showcasing just what it is that has made them such original forces.  Previous Original Penguin Plugged In shows have taken place with Jake BuggFrictionMiles KaneDeaf HavanaBenga and Wilkinson and upcoming shows feature Nick MulveyTwin AtlanticThumpers and We Are Scientists.

For more Original Penguin Plugged In sessions go to

Monday, 23 June 2014

My Interview with Luke Pickett

I see you are excited about the World Cup. What are your predictions? Would you play Rooney?

Yeah, I've literally just finished watching the France v Switzerland game! I think France could be a good shout at this point - they look really strong. My favourites to begin with were Brazil, and I still think they'll be tough to beat, but France are my prediction to go on and win it.

I would definitely start Rooney. Being an Arsenal fan I would have played Wilshere instead of Henderson. I'd have also played Barkley instead of Welbeck.

The video for ‘Loving You is Wrong’ is out now. How comfortable do you feel acting in the videos? Does it come natural to you?

It's not something I've had to do too often, so when I went to the shoot I was a little bit anxious about having to do it, but once I'd done a couple of takes I really eased into the role and I was surprised at how naturally it came to me. I'm probably not going to win any Oscars for it, but I don't think I did too bad a job!

Your website looks great. How important are the visuals and style to what you do?

It's extremely important, especially in this day and age where so much is communicated through the internet. Being a creative person it's pretty vital that the imagery reflects me and my music.

Do you ensure you have a lot of input in all aspects?

Definitely! I've always had control over all that sort of stuff from the very beginning. I'm a perfectionist when it comes to my music so I think it creeps into that side of things as well. It's the same with my image - I'm an artist, so it needs to be a reflection of what I envisage.

People love to pigeon hole and stereotype. With your style and tattoos people may assume you are a rock artist. Do you enjoy surprising them with your R & B sound?

Yeah, for sure - it's always good to have an element of surprise. There's definitely people who associate tattoos with rock, but I also think tattoos are way more mainstream now which makes it harder to pigeon hole people with them.

Did you always know what type of music you wanted to make, or was it just what came out naturally?

I grew up on my parents music - my Dad used to play a lot of Stevie Wonder, Marvin Gaye & Luther Vandross, so it's no real surprise that I've ended up going down the road I have. I think I've always had a soulful voice so that's lent itself to the style of music I'm creating. I've got a real eclectic taste in music - I went through a bit of a rock stage as a teenager but the one genre that always stuck with me is RnB/Soul. I love a lot of different types of music but I guess RnB is what I'm really passionate about.

When did you realise that you could make a career out of your passion?

There's never been any realisation, I just love making music and kept doing it in the hope that people keep responding positively to it. If I can continue being successful doing this then that's the dream.

How did your family react knowing that it can be such a competitive industry?

It's like anything in life... it has its ups and downs. I'm not going to lie, there have been some difficult times but on the whole my family have been supportive through what is a testing career path.

Do you find it easier to write in times of turmoil or when you are blissfully happy?

Writing music isn't necessarily dictated by the mood I'm feeling at the time. A spark can come from anywhere - I could be driving in my car and suddenly an idea crops up. Of course though, if you're going to write a meaningful song then it's important that you can draw on experiences in life. Sometimes it's moments of turmoil, sometimes it's happiness but I enjoy exploring both emotions.

What environment aids your creativity? 

It's a weird one - like I said in my previous answer, I can have a spark appear from anywhere. I think I'm most creative at night, on my own - I'm a bit of a night owl.
Writing lyrics is quite exposing. Is there ever any feelings of embarrassment when family hear the personal stories that you’ve made into songs?

Yeah of course! Especially on this album there's a lot of sexualised lyrics... it's not really something you want your Mum hearing!

Being a musician in 2014 is not as glamorous as people may think. What is the toughest part about  it for you? What has surprised you about the industry?

There are a lot of “story tellers” in the music industry! One thing you need to get good at quickly is being able to gauge who is genuine and who isn't. I meet a lot of people who are very keen to brag about the things they're doing and have got coming up - most of it is never true... It's better to be humble and let what you're creating do the talking.

How do you feel about the fame side of being a successful musician. Do you find it daunting? 

Sometimes... obviously there are aspects to it that are quite appealing, but I'm also someone who likes their space. I think having done music for a while now makes me more prepared if that type of fame comes my way.

Your sounds is very smooth. Would you describe yourself as smooth?

I'd like to think I was smooth, but I think the reality is probably that I'm not! I think someone else would have to give you the answer to that, but maybe I'm good at knowing the right things to say?!

You are getting noticed by some pretty incredible websites and musical industry people. Which one made you the most excited?

When vibe magazine took notice that was a pretty big deal for me - they're one of the biggest urban magazines. I also recently had Boi 1da post on his blog about me. I'm a big fan of his productions and he's worked with some amazing artists! So that was pretty cool!

What for you is the ‘I’ve made it’ benchmark? 

I don't know if you can ever say that to yourself, otherwise I don't know how you strive to keep on creating and achieving. Having said that though, I think if I ended up playing to a packed crowd at Madison Square Garden I may change my tune!

Recently played on your iPod?

J. Cole - Runaway

If you weren’t creating music you would be…..

Probably working with dogs or something...I love dogs; I'm not good enough to be footballer, so that's out of the question! I'm also interested in history, so who knows?

Song you wish you’d written?

The first song that springs to mind is one I've listened to recently, and I was just blown away by it! Michael Jackson's 'Blue Gangsta' on the Xscape album - he's still king! I also love inc - 5 days!

First CD purchased?

The Police - Greatest Hits

Dream stage to play? 

Madison Square Garden or O2 Arena

Dream collaboration?

D'angelo - the guy is a G!

Who would play you in a film of your life?

Leonardo DiCaprio ... what a don!

Guilty pleasure? 

Simply Red

Rider requests?

Coconut water and space to warm up my voice.


Yesterday I finally got to do my bungee jump for DELTA. What a beautiful day for it! This was my second bungee jump, but at 300ft, was the highest one yet....I have to admit that extra 120ft made a lot of difference. This felt a lot more intense. The last time I did one it was during a snow blizzard which blurred the view somewhat - yesterday it was crystal clear!
Thanks to all who donated - it is not too late though if you have a bit of change spare! (PLEASE) 


Friday, 20 June 2014

Adidas X The Farm Company

With festival season in full flow and most of my work time being consumed by all that comes with it, I am finding myself ignoring many of the fashion related press releases hitting my inbox. However, there was no way I could shun the delights delivered from Adidas HQ this week. This July sees them drop another fantastically summer collaboration with the Brazilian Farm Company. Essentially they've gifted you with a carnival of a casual wear capsule. I personally can't wait to get involved in the festivities.

My favourite look comes in the form of this lightweight and shiny co ordinate. Fresh and tropical and fronted by the iconic Adidas Trefoil, this crop and short combo is my must have purchase for next month. It may even inspire me to do some exercise!!


Monday, 16 June 2014

My Interview with Idiom at Download Festival 2014


My Interview with Polar at Download Festival


My Interview with Matty Mullins of Memphis May Fire at Download Festival


My Interview with Dan from Bury Tomorrow at Download Festival 2014


My Interview with Skyharbor at Download Festival 2014


My Interview with Steel Panther at the Kerrang! Awards 2014


My Interview with The Midnight Beast at the Kerrang! Awards 2014


My Interview with Asami of Neon Jungle at the Kerrang! Awards 2014


My Interview (and Laura's) with Fall Out Boy at the Kerrang! Awards 2014


My Interview with Dillinger Escape Plan at the Kerrang! Awards 2014


My Interview with Phil from Motorhead at the Kerrang! Awards 2014


My Interview with Deaf Havana at the Kerrang! Awards 2014


My Interview with Crossfaith at the Kerrang! Awards 2014


My Interview with the Amity Affliction at the Kerrang! Awards 2014


My Interview with Young Guns at The Kerrang! Awards 2014


My Interview with Don Broco at The Kerrang! Awards 2014


My Interview with Lonely the Brave at the Kerrang! Awards 2014


My Interview with Mallory Knox at the Kerrang! Awards 2014


My Interview with Neck Deep at the Kerrang! Awards 2014


My Interview with Decade at the Kerrang! Awards 2014


Thursday, 5 June 2014


I am sure because of your fashion industry contacts and celebrity profile since MIC you have oodles of opportunities and potential collaborations thrown your way. Why was this the right one for you and how did it come about?

Illustrated People and I have worked together in the past and it seemed like the perfect fit to work on this collaboration.  I was really lucky to be given creative control by the team there.

Can you describe the process of putting together the collection from start to launch….

I ordered a load of Japanese stuff and researched their product, toys and trends.  I photographed graphics I loved, and played around with them on photoshop.  The next process was to layer the imagery to create my own unique prints.  Once the product was designed, I then started working on the shoot, looking for the perfect models and team to work on hair and make up.  

Can you describe the images on the mood moods and the brainstorms created ahead of this collection?

So many images and graphics!  Japanese iconography and imagery, sickly candy colour tones and Japanese packaging featured.
You are extremely accomplished in photography and styling, but how easy was it to translate your passion and knowledge for fashion into creating designs?

It was great to learn the process of creating prints but visually I found it easy as I have been planning this collection in my head for years! 

Did you create the sketches and artwork yourself?

I worked with Kelly Anna from Illustrated People. Creating the artwork was a joint process.

The collection is inspired by the vibrant Tokyo fashion scene. This is very popular with stylists and bloggers. How were you going to ensure your take on the theme was unique?

I came up with the unique idea and I have kept it very personal to me.   

Were there any other themes that were considered before you decided on the Japanese infusion? 

No, it was always going to be a Japanese theme.  I knew I wanted to do this before I was approached.

As well as the designs you styled and shot the lookbook. That’s a lot of work. Did you feel that necessary to achieve exactly what you had pictured it all to look like. How are you at relinquishing control in general?

I wanted to do this all myself.  If I have a vision, I need to create it myself.

It is always scary putting anything you have put your heart and soul into out into the public. How do you cope with people sharing their opinion on work that you do?

I have had the most amazing feedback, however I do like criticism. I believe in this collection so if someone said something negative, that is their opinion but I think the range is fantastic!   
You have worked with some fashion icons ( Mario Testino, Grace Coddington) Can you share something from those experiences?

Each shoot has been very unique and it has been a pleasure to work with so many incredible people.

In the fashion industry you often have to do a lot of unpaid work and internships. Can you tell me about your career path to this point, the ups and downs?

I started working at a couture house at the age of 16 in my summer holidays then I worked at Conde Nast.  As soon as I could, I was test shooting every weekend. I worked very hard!  
If you could see one person wearing your designs who would it be?

Azelia Banks 

So we can be ahead of the game, can you give us your fashion trend predictions for the coming year…..

Tracksuits and basketball shorts and mid naughties inspired outfits.

Trend you wish would disappear…..

Ugly shoes such as Uggs and Crocs 

Favourite designers… 

Meadham Kirchhoff
Style icons…

Wednesday Adams

Hidden shopping gems you can share….

I do most of my shopping on ebay

I admire your attitude to dressing. You don’t seem like a slave to trends, have fun with it, and take risks. What is your mantra when it comes to your style? What is your biggest faux pas to date do you think?

Wear what you want but dont follow trends that dont flatter your shape. 

Biggest Faux pas? 

Getting layering wrong can happen when im tired but I usually like what I wear.

If you dream scenario could come true, where would your career go from here?

Become Creative Director at Topshop

If you could give someone a make-over who would it be? Would you be gentle or blunt?

Angelina Jolie would look amazing with pink hair!

Wednesday, 4 June 2014

Model Search Competition with M&P Model Management- 'The face of 2014'

Beyond Retro are looking for the next international modelling superstar with M+P Models and Headmasters. 

They have joined forces with one of the biggest modeling agencies in the UK, M+P and crimpers to the stars Headmasters, scouting nationwide for new talent to find that one special girl to become the 'New Face ' of both brands and a contract with the agency.
'We want you, the public to send in your selfies and snapshots to us at a head shot and a full length is all that is needed, nothing professional, we want to see the real you, be individual and show us who you are and why you should be snapped up by an amazing agency and become the new face of two incredible brands'.
Committed to their close one-on-one development, career management & ethical industry approach, M+P are really excited to hold this special event for young women to get a taste of the world of fashion, and we are super excited to be part of it.
From all the entries the team will decide on 40 finalists who will be invited to a very special day in London’s west-end celeb hot spot, The Drury Club on Saturday 26th July 2014. The day will focus on catwalk & photographic model training with some of the industry’s most exciting talents including models, photographers and booking agents.
The winner of the competition and the 'New Face' of both brands will be announced at the end of the day, shoots for both Beyond Retro and Headmasters will be arranged and contract with M+P awarded!
Open casting calls are taking place throughout Headmasters Salons & Beyond Retro Stores nationwide, the M+P scouting team will be sneaking into all stores to cast their eagle eyes over shoppers, so be sure to pop in for a chance to be ‘spotted’, keep an eye on Twitter for announcements.
This is a nationwide search so we are inviting entries via and through a social media casting campaign under the hashtag #MandPose  where the girls can share their photos with the world to support their campaign!

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