Monday, 29 November 2010

Curtain Call

We're going to stop selling copies of the fanzine through the blog at the end of next week (December 10).
The few remaining copies will go to some shops, which will be listed.
Then that's it.
The pleasure was ours, thank you everyone!

Thursday, 28 October 2010

Slight Return

Johnston & Vock is pleased to announce the arrival of the second and final printing of Foxtrot Echo Lima Tango!

Monday, 11 October 2010

Second Edition!

The second edition of Foxtrot Echo Lima Tango is finally due off the presses on 23 October, according to our very friendly printer.

Because lots of you have already said you want a copy, we've put the Paypal button back up on the site (look to your right) so that people can pre-order this week if they would like to be sure of getting one. Our plan is that, with our mail room hats on, we can get lots of envelopes pre-addressed and then can send out your copies as soon as they fall off the back of the lorry.

We'll keep posting any updates on the delivery schedule in any case!

Wednesday, 6 October 2010

Just in time

John Mohan (the Servants/Felt/Apple Boutique/John Mohan)
has his solo debut out!
To be precise: it's three home recordings, made between 1986/1987.
This dream 3" cd has just been released on the Edition 59 label. That's the same people who've done Apple Boutique's Love Resistance too.
As their name suggests, there's only 59 copies, so one might hurry. Especially since Goodbye Jane is such an implausible gem.
Well, it all is really. I for one am planning to hammer it repeatedly at the launch of the reprint. For sure!

Thursday, 23 September 2010

Back In Felt

We have recovered, just, from Rocket Cottage's fantastic Lawrence-channelling set at the Betsey Trotwood a few weeks back - belated congratulations to all those who won fantastic radio roadshow goodie bags! Whilst we're at it, we would also take the opportunity to salute Lupe, Raz and everyone who helped making it the fun it was.

Meanwhile, however, the steady trickle of emails requesting a reprint have continued, as have the nice reviews in glossy publications (Q, Mojo, Frieze, Dazed & Confused, etc). Not wishing to seem churlish, we have faced up to our fears of yet another big pile of publications taking up the bicycle space in the hallway: the presses are humming and we expect to have 500 copies of the second (and really final) edition by early October. More news on the exact date as soon as we have it, and we'll put up a thing for pre-orders as soon as it's all confirmed.

Thanks again to everyone who sent us lovely messages over the summer - and we promise, everyone who requested the reprint already is guaranteed a copy.

Sunday, 1 August 2010

The Post Script

We are very proud to announce an evening of Felt/Denim/Go-Kart Mozart related music and merriment next Friday August 6th at the Betsey Trotwood pub in London! It starts at 8pm.
The fabulous Rocket Cottage (two ex-Baxendale/one Alexander's Festival Hall) will be playing. We'd also like to thank their Tim Benton again for this bombastic poster. As you can read, they are going to do a range of bona fide Lawrence smash hits, along with Fabien Polair and some surprise guests (let's see!) plus records spun by Lupe Nunez-Fernandez (Amor de Dias / Pipas) and probably us too. Good luck hast it that the nice Colour Me Pop people have an event upstairs simultaneously, so it's fairly hard to imagine what else in London might compete that evening.

We are very much looking forward to it! Hope you can join us for the festivities.

Friday, 30 July 2010

Proverbial Popular Demand

So the copies of the 'zine sold out. we slapped ourselves on the back and thought that the worldwide demand had probably been sated. How wrong we were.

Now, some reviews later and courtesy of lots of nice word of mouth, we are getting several disappointed messages a day from prospective readers. Suitably chastened, we are happy to consider a second printing if there is enough interest. If you are one of the unlucky few who did not get a copy first time around but would take a second bite of the cherry, please just drop us a one line email to register your interest and if there are enough of you we will bow to popular demand...

Meanwhile, we are arranging a little celebratory do in London for next Friday August 6th - more details over the weekend!

Tuesday, 29 June 2010

Thursday, 24 June 2010

Going, going...

Thanks to everyone who came to the launch of the 'zine a couple of weeks ago and to all those who have sent nice messages since - along with enough Felt memories, ephemera etc for a whole other fanzine. And, of course, to everyone who has written about it online too!

We've had an amazing response and we've been posting copies to all four corners of the world, to the extent that I got stomach cramps from licking stamps (yes, I've heard about that Seinfeld episode) and the huge pile that was blocking my hallway is now merely a doorstop.

In fact, we are down to our very last few copies, so we're only selling maximum two per Paypal account now to make sure that everyone who really needs one can still get it.

We are also planning another London event, as a kind of postscript - more soon...

Monday, 7 June 2010

Copies of Foxtrot Echo Lima Tango available now

We are pleased to announce that you can now purchase copies of Foxtrot Echo Lima Tango, a 160 page fanzine dedicated to all things Felt, via the Paypal button at the top of this blog page.

The 'zine costs £10 including postage within the UK, £12 for Europe and £13 for further afield.

Since there's only 500 copies, it might be a good idea to get a copy sooner rather than later. If you should want to have it, that is.

Saturday, 5 June 2010

Reminder: London launch this Sunday!

In case you might have forgotten, lost your filofax, or thrown away that post-it note: the long promised launch of Foxtrot Echo Lima Tango takes place this Sunday at the Hangover Lounge at the Lexington in London's Kings Cross from 2pm!

There will be DJ's including Felt's very own Phil King and (we hope) several other former band members mingling with the crowd on either side of the decks. We will be endeavouring to get them to sign our copies...

The 'zine itself, meanwhile, will be available for the first time and at a special launch price.

Rain is forecast.

We look forward to seeing you there...

Friday, 4 June 2010

It really exists

We have it in our hands! And we have only spotted 5 typos so far.

We can now exclusively reveal that, over its 160 pages, Foxtrot Echo Lima Tango features contributions from (deep breath): Gary Ainge, Paul Becker, JC Brouchard, Thomas Chatterton, Ben Clancy, Martin Davies, Anh Do & Matt Fishbeck, Dickon Edwards, Lora Findlay, Alistair Fitchett, Tim Gane, Chris Heath, Julian Hyde, Rui Kalda, Paul Kelly, Phil King, Ben Knight, Sybille Lacroix, Lucy McKenzie, Alasdair MacLean, Alan Michael, John Mohan, Kevin Pearce, Scott Portnoy, Brian David Stevens, Marco Thomas and Emily Wardill.

Thanks to everyone for your patience, it has been a long road to get here... You will finally be able to buy copies via the blog from Monday, it will cost £10 (including UK postage) - but only of course if you have not already purchased your copy at the Hangover Lounge London launch on Sunday!

Wednesday, 2 June 2010

Good timing

This sunday, June 6th, will see the relaunch of Rui's Felt site. If we can get internet at the Hangover Lounge zine launch, we will be clicking 'refresh' with baited breath!

And in case it was starting to seem completely mythical, more on the zine itself tomorrow...

Friday, 7 May 2010

Fanzine launch at The Hangover Lounge, Sunday June 6th!

I know we said May. We may have said May. But we meant June - and this time it's definite.

The launch for Foxtrot Echo Lima Tango will take place on Sunday June 6th from 2pm with our friends at The Hangover Lounge, London's weekly musical hair of the dog held at The Lexington on Pentonville Road. The afternoon will feature writer, record mogul and former Felt bassist Phil King DJing and live tributes from some very special guests to be unveiled shortly. Oh, and it's free entry!

The 'zine will be available for the first time on the day. After that, we will be selling copies through the blog and selected retailers.

More details to follow...

Sunday, 18 April 2010

Felts are everywhere

Last week one of our eagle-eyed contributors spotted not one, but two Felt references in one Thursday copy of The Grauniad.

First, here they were being named checked by Ben Goldwasser as MGMT's alpha (their omega being Deep Freeze Mice). And then, separated by only a few pages, there was Laura Barton reminiscing about swapping tapes of "the Pastels and Felt and Mr Scruff" with one Joe, her "musical partner in crime."

We are left to ask ourselves: are these straws in the wind? Are we on the crest of some sort of Zeitgeist? Should we peg our print run to the Guardian's...?

Wednesday, 7 April 2010

"Moz & Loz"

A little bit of tumbleweed has been blowing through the blog, as we have focussed our energies on finishing the ’zine proper. There has been a fairly steep learning curve, as we have finally come to terms with the fact that ‘editing’ in this case really means publishing – i.e. designing, proofing, transcribing etc… Fortunately we have a London launch date pencilled in for early May (more details soon) and, with that deadline breathing down our neck, have been hell-for-leather towards completion.

Temporarily distracted, we had somehow missed the extraordinary events over at Rui’s Felt Forum page. On 19 March,  one Nigel Silver responded to an old Times article on Felt by Bob Stanley which had been posted the previous week. His post began:

Once again it is demonstrated just how the world is plunged into an delusory abyss by heavily distorted historical manipulations that are generated either for dramatic effect, or even more nefarious reasons.
I do not know if certain details concerning Mr. Deebank are the invention of L. Heyward, or the textual histrionics of B. Stanley. Either way it is a very sorry state of affairs. For those who treasure the truth rather than sensationalism, the following true account is offered…

In the rest of the post, and a dozen or so which have followed since, Mr Silver took up the task of correcting what he sees as the Lawrence-heavy bias to history’s record of Felt. Claiming “a certain amount of limited contact with M.D.,” his posts (apparently short in length due to his limited internet access) are full of extraordinary little details, particularly from the early Water Orton days (“They used to play two electric guitars through a single 5 watt practice amp”).

At this point we would offer no comment, but I would strongly recommend you to stroll over to the Forum to take a look – there have been three new posts today alone…

And more from us on the thing itself very soon.

Tuesday, 16 February 2010

The great Guthrie controversy

As we inch closer to a finished fanzine (just this week we got splendid contributions from John Mohan, Sybille Lacroix, Anh Do and Matt Fishbeck), we have been receiving support from some kindred spirits - Simon Goddard, for example, just wrote a lovely post mentioning the zine and recounting his own encounter with Lawrence at, incongruously, the Groucho Club.

In the meantime, however, I have been digressing slightly and delving into a long-dead controversy: Robin Guthrie's production of Ignite The Seven Cannons. While everyone from Alan McGee to Pitchfork seems to agree that Forever Breathes The Lonely Word is the best Felt LP, Ignite often gets cast as the runt of the litter. The reason, as Alistair Fitchett succinctly summarises it, is that the record "made too many concessions to 4AD style for comfort. Guthrie's production seemed to compress the sound, and made on the whole for a muddy, messy Felt." "Muddy" is a word that seems to come up a lot. Other commentators, such as a poster on Adrian Denning's page, are even less sanguine: "Robin Guthrie has caused a complete disaster! A catastrophe!"

I am a fully paid-up partisan for mid-period, just pre-Creation Felt. Let's set aside Primitive Painters, which is a shibboleth even for the devotees; I would still pin my colours to the mast of the Black Ship in the Harbour, I Don't Know Which Way To Turn, Southern State Tapestry et al. I am too much of a dilettante though and so I have been searching for a true Guthrie/Cocteau Twins devotee to make a more spirited, production-minded defence of the album. I've asked around on the Cocteau Twins Forum, but if anyone fancies writing a guest blog entry please get in touch...

Very good minus

Saturday, 23 January 2010

Back to the Boutique

By this blog's standard, a very topical post: a plug for a record that has only just been released! Well... re-released.

As part of their early Creation singles reissue series, Love Resistance has just been released as a 3” mini CD by the Vollwert label (John Mulvey wrote about it in the Uncut blog). This one and only outing by Apple Boutique was originally published as a three track 12”, and it has remained unavailable in digital form until now. So those of you lucky enough to call a compact disc player your own finally get the chance to (re)visit this bona fide piece of sceptical pop in all its glory. As presumably most people who have got as far as reading this blog will know, Apple Boutique was comprised of latter-day Felt members John Mohan and Phil King (the band shares its name with a track on The Pictorial Jackson Review). The pair had already played together in The Servants, whose The Sun, A Small Star also finds Go-Betweens-member Amanda Brown playing the violin. Apple Boutique’s Ballad Of Jet Harris in particular fuses some Felty filigree asides into its own, more wistful trajectory, culminating in a none-more-minimal vocal: a series of sighed 'Oh...oh no...'s, groaned by Mr. King himself, which only materialise in its dying seconds.

Phil is not only contributing to the upcoming zine himself, but has also been instrumental in making it possible at all, having introduced us to lots of people and material we would never have uncovered ourselves, as well as being a font of some amazing anecdotes - our metaphorical glasses are raised to him!

Tuesday, 19 January 2010


Over at Stylus Magazine, Todd Hutlock lists his Top Ten Song and/or Album Titles by Felt. As fan parlour games go, it's a good one - and I would disagree almost entirely with his choices. So here, in the spirit of the Sunday of life, are some alternative suggestions...

#10 All The People I Like Are Those That Are Dead
OK, Todd and I are in agreement on this one at least - no way around it. Amazing - not least because of how weirdly Lawrence syncopates it when he's singing.

#9 The Final Resting Place Of The Ark
Impeccable. Despite being one of my least favourite Felt tracks.

#8 Stained Glass Windows In The Sky
At the purple end of things (see also: The World Is Soft As Lace; Crumbling The Antiseptic Beauty). And something like the diametric opposite of a classic 'why not?' Denim title, e.g. Internet Curtains.

#7 Templeroy
I always assumed this was a word Lawrence had scavenged (I was vaguely imagining a ceremonial position in the British Raj). It appears, however, to be a wonderful coinage of his own.

#6 Buried Wild Blind
Always hard to detach titles from the tracks, and I love this one. But the title has a lyricism all its own: desperation in amber.

#5 Mexican Bandits
There are several different genres of Felt title and this belongs to 'overspecific local colour' (see also: Roman Litter; The Seventeenth Century; Vasco da Gama). This, though, is one of my favourites. The instrumentals often seem to end up with the best titles, perhaps for obvious reasons.

#4 Primitive Painters
Christian and I disagree on the merits of the song. The title is also arguably part of the category mentioned above, and perhaps I only like it quite so much because I'm obsessed with cave painting. Nonetheless: oblique - evocative - exemplary.

#3 Black Ship In The Harbour
Auguring ill: a gothic novel in six syllables.

#2 Stains On A Decade
The best album title, belatedly. And probably the most succinct summation of Felt as a band out of time, perfectly aligned (10 albums, 10 years etc.) with a decade to which they did not belong.

#1 Sempiternal Darkness
I don't know where Lawrence picked up 'sempiternal' (in a Chatterton poem?), but the title imparts a weird Miltonic gloom to the beginning of an album  - possibly my favourite - which has many infernal overtones ("You're reading from a Season in Hell / And you don't know what it's about...").

Sunday, 3 January 2010

Girls meet Lawrence on London's picturesque Hoxton Square

A very funny, revealing recent interview with Lawrence by the band Girls, in three parts (courtesy of the Magic RPM site).

I like Christopher Owen's description of Denim on Ice as an "iron fist."

Lots of great asides, such as the story of how Felt came to only make half a pop video, the magic of Michel Polnareff and Iggy Pop's fine work in advertising. We also especially enjoyed the section about meeting, or rather not meeting, your fans and following the example of Burt Lancaster when it comes to autographs.

Friday, 1 January 2010

Felt articles on the web

In advance of our upcoming fanzine (which will only exist in printed form), it is worth pointing out some of the writing about Lawrence and Felt already available on the world wide web.

Foremost among them is Felt: A Tribute, Rui Kalda's virtual shrine to the band. It hasn't been updated for a while now, but it's phenomenally comprehensive: there's a discography, lyrics, loads of scanned articles and reviews, plus a few downloadable rarities. (The link in the pictures section is dead, but the images are still available via Rui's Flickr page.)

There are also several excellent overviews of the band and its career. Lee McFadden gives an ideal introduction on the Perfect Sound Forever site. Written to coincide with Cherry Red's series of re-releases of the Felt back-catalogue several years ago, it weaves together a succinct chronological history with insights from Lawrence ("Every album has the word 'the' in it! No one's ever spotted that!") and acute critical asides.

Alistair Fitchett's 'The Man Who Was Not With It', from 1996, also gives a great general history. He is particularly good on the band's beginning ("Almost everyone who came to Felt late has been confused by 'Index'") and good too on their general untimeliness:

[Felt] seemed totally out of time, existing within their own vacuum [...] It was easy to imagine them as part of the Warhol factory scene, and certainly Lawrence was tragically and beautifully strange enough to have stood out amongst a crowd of Edie Sedgewicks, Gerard Malangas or Billy Names. It was also easy to picture him as a character in a Scott Fitzgerald story; he had that certain doomed existential prettiness that the twenties seemed to suggest. Twenties Lost Generation or Seventies Blank Generation. You could take your pick.

And finally Adrian Denning provides an album-by-album account, offering scores out of ten along the way - some of them, inevitably, controversial...