Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

Bastille – Next Big Thing out of the UK?

So, I’ve not been staying up to date on the music scene nearly as much as I used to but had a listen to something I came across on Hype Machine the other day and think we may be on to a winner in Bastille. At the risk of sounding like a massive hipster (I’m kind of ok with it) I’ve been pretty successful at spotting/hearing good UK talent that I think has a global appeal/sound and that will catch on – so far best shouts being The XX and Mumford & Sons (having cited the Mumford & Sons album as the best album of 2009).

After a couple of days straight occupying the top spot as well as another top 5 spot on The Hype Machine’s popular chart (quite an accomplishment really) it seems like Bastille are already off to a strong start and with their first full length album out next year it looks like they’re in a strong starting position for a breakthrough 2012.

For those who don’t want to wait a year to hear what they have to offer you can check out a couple of their hits. The first, a cover of City High’s “What Would you Do?” (an absolute blast from the past) occupied the top spot the Hypem chart whilst the second – an original tune called “Flaws” was also in the top 5 shows the nice folk tone of the lead singer’s voice but also the slightly more indie/electronic influences creeping in as well.


What do you guys think? Big things ahead, one hit wonders, or unmoved? If you dig it you can get the Flaws single or pre-order the forth coming EP on iTunes.

Nike Air Mag – Marty McFly

Well, there are no words but “holy shit”… that day is finally upon us. There has been a lot of anger over the years about our distinct lack of hover boards and the fact that the future has really been a let down. However, one of the greatest most highly anticipated drops in the history of kicks may be coming our way in the next year or two thanks to the fine folks over at Nike.

Our friends over at Nice Kicks covered the patent request filed for the Nike Air Mag – a shoe that laces itself (yeah, I do mean shoes that have auto-locking/auto-lacing features you saw in the film Back to the Future II) over a year ago!

Well today, after receiving a call at midnight and being whisked out to LA on behalf of the Nike team it does look as though the wait may be a lot shorter than we had initially anticipated.

There is still no confirmed drop date but we will certainly provide any updates as and when we receive them. In the meantime, please watch the above video from a novelty Doc Brown account, read up on the release over at Nick Kicks, and get your money, tents, and sleeping bags ready!

Mr. Bathing Ape – 2011 Collection Sneak Preview

Thanks to the folks over at Hypebeast and from Inventory, we’ve got our first look at the new season from Mr. Bathing Ape. As a brand, a Bathing Ape (a.k.a BAPE) have always branded themselves and benefited from limited run and high cost as a general model for business.

Over the last couple of years it seems as though Nigo and the BAPE family have moved away a bit from this model – perhaps most noticeably with the launch of Mr. Bathing Ape last March. Rather than focus fully on cartoon designs that would be limited in number of prints they have gone on the other economic pressure to keep things even more “in demand”.

Whilst there is no denying the fact that the BAPE brand isn’t designed for the price sensitive consumer, even some of the most avid BAPE followers may not be in the right income bracket to pony up for the Mr. Bathing Ape line. It’s hard to say whether ultimately this is a marketing angle to go after an even more elite class of street wear enthusiast, or if in fact, it is an indication of the fact that the BAPE team are pretty savvy after all and with an ageing consumer base, they’ve realised their long term growth is dependent on the ageing streetwear and sneaker obsessed crowd continuing to find their brand relevant, keep things stylish, but also provide options that could be worn to work and more formal events.

If this is a sign of the evolution of the company towards these pressures it may just warrant charging £600 for a pair of dress shoes from a trainer brand.

The photos from the new collection are via Hypebeast.

Girl Talk – This is the Remix

As shouting “This is the Remix” at the top of my lungs is one of my favourite passtimes and Gregg Gillis (aka Girl Talk) is one of my favourite artists it’d be rude not to post this really.

It would be even more rude not to let you know that you can download the entire album for free from Illegal Art. Seriously though the newest album “All Day” that was released yesterday is top notch from start to finish- the entire thing is full of the type of bangers we’ve come to expect from the Pittsburgh based mash-up artist. As the King of remixes we hope you will agree that this IS the remix. The best part? You don’t have DJ Clue yelling in the middle of the track… or is that the worst part?

Either way, enjoy!

Holy Fuck – “Red Lights” Music Video


So very little to add here. Holy Fuck is a quality duo that I caught for the first time at the Cat’s Cradle in Carrboro, NC (one of the greatest live venues of all time)… and this is their latest video which, incidentally features a cat. Oh… and is the one of the most hilarious videos I’ve ever seen?

Cat + High Speed Chase + Bad Special Effects = Win.

Banksy Goes Hard on Simpsons Intro


For those of you Simpsons fans you’ll know that every now and again they look for new inspiration (be it in the form of guest appearances from major actors or musicians) or in the most recent case – outsourcing the introduction.

Have a look at the above video that was directed by British “anonymous” artist Banksy. It starts out lighthearted and follows the general tune of a traditional Simpsons intro but take a much darker turn towards the end.

Considering that many of the cells for the show are outsourced to South Korea you have got to wonder how the producers of the show (20th Century Fox) will feel about the intro and the creators may find themselves in a bit of hotwater over this one.

The episode, called “MoneyBart” is set to air here in the UK on the 21st of October.

Asked about the intro, Executive Producer Al Jean managed only “This is what you get when you outsource”

Today’s Tribute to Hipsters


So it is rare that we blog two times a day… frankly it’s not sustainable. However, this is too funny not to include on the blog. There is no real need to describe the above video “I Love my Life as a Dickhead” other than to point out how well it has captured the scene/vibe of so many young people living in East London.

Definitely wait until the end as some of the “characters” descriptions of how they’re livin are perhaps the best part of the video. Enjoy the laughs… or the awkward self-reflection… or whatever this video inspires in you.

Gotta give a quick shout to The Poke, without whom we would not have come across this little gem.

“Basically… I’m a part time blogger, and, like…”

Government Coalition Fail – Open Letter to Google

*Note- we have now seen the PDF version of this letter and the error appears in the final draft of the open letter as well.

Wouldn’t you think if you were going to send an “open letter” to Google about privacy issues on behalf of a number of countries that you could afford to get a copywriter?

In this open letter directed to Eric Schmidt, CEO of Google, apparently the lawyers and team writing the letter couldn’t be asked to proof read the letter before sending it out. This version has appeared on Mashable and a number of other sites and is pretty shocking.

The error in question refers to the following quote (also extracted by Mashable in their article without any question of grammatical accuracy): “… which betrayed a disappointing disregard for fundamental privacy norms and laws.”

I assume what they meant by this, was that it “displayed a dissappointing disregard” or it “betrayed fundamental privacy norms and laws” however I don’t believe the combination of the two works.

My grammar is not perfect, but this is downright embarassing given the context.

The original letter (as reprinted by the Privacy Comissioner of Canada) is included below.

The Privacy Commissioner of Canada, Jennifer Stoddart, and the heads of the data protection authorities in France, Germany, Israel, Italy, Ireland, Netherlands, New Zealand, Spain and the United Kingdom sent the following letter to the chief executive officer of Google Inc. to express their concerns about privacy issues related to Google Buzz.

April 19, 2010

Mr. Eric Schmidt
Chairman of the Board and
Chief Executive Officer
Google Inc.
Mountain View, CA
USA   94043

Dear Mr. Schmidt:

Google is an innovative company that has changed how people around the world use the Internet.  We recognize your company’s many accomplishments and its dramatic impact on our information economy.  As data protection regulators mandated to protect privacy rights, we also applaud your participation in discussions in many jurisdictions about new approaches to data protection.

However, we are increasingly concerned that, too often, the privacy rights of the world’s citizens are being forgotten as Google rolls out new technological applications.  We were disturbed by your recent rollout of the Google Buzz social networking application, which betrayed a disappointing disregard for fundamental privacy norms and laws.  Moreover, this was not the first time you have failed to take adequate account of privacy considerations when launching new services. 

The privacy problems associated with your initial global rollout of Google Buzz on February 9, 2010 were serious and ought to have been readily apparent to you. 

In essence, you took Google Mail (Gmail), a private, one-to-one web-based e-mail service, and converted it into a social networking service, raising concern among users that their personal information was being disclosed.  Google automatically assigned users a network of “followers” from among people with whom they corresponded most often on Gmail, without adequately informing Gmail users about how this new service would work or providing sufficient information to permit informed consent decisions. This violated the fundamental principle that individuals should be able to control the use of their personal information.

Users instantly recognized the threat to their privacy and the security of their personal information, and were understandably outraged. To your credit, Google apologized and moved quickly to stem the damage.

While your company addressed the most privacy-intrusive aspects of Google Buzz in the wake of this public protest and most recently (April 5, 2010) you asked all users to reconfirm their privacy settings, we remain extremely concerned about how a product with such significant privacy issues was launched in the first place.  We would have expected a company of your stature to set a better example.  Launching a product in “beta” form is not a substitute for ensuring that new services comply with fair information principles before they are introduced. 

It is unacceptable to roll out a product that unilaterally renders personal information public, with the intention of repairing problems later as they arise.  Privacy cannot be sidelined in the rush to introduce new technologies to online audiences around the world.

Unfortunately, Google Buzz is not an isolated case.  Google Street View was launched in some countries without due consideration of privacy and data protection laws and cultural norms.  In that instance, you addressed privacy concerns related to such matters as the retention of unblurred facial images only after the fact, and there is continued concern about the adequacy of the information you provide before the images are captured.  

We recognize that Google is not the only online company with a history of introducing services without due regard for the privacy of its users.  As a leader in the online world, we hope that your company will set an example for others to follow.

We therefore call on you, like all organisations entrusted with people’s personal information, to incorporate fundamental privacy principles directly into the design of new online services.  That means, at a minimum:

  • collecting and processing only the minimum amount of personal information necessary to achieve the identified purpose of the product or service;
  • providing clear and unambiguous information about how personal information will be used to allow users to provide informed consent;
  • creating privacy-protective default settings;
  • ensuring that privacy control settings are prominent and easy to use;
  • ensuring that all personal data is adequately protected, and
  • giving people simple procedures for deleting their accounts and honouring their requests in a timely way.

In addition to respecting these broad principles, we also expect all organisations to comply with relevant data protection and privacy laws.  These laws apply online, just as they do in the physical world.  As well, we encourage organisations to engage with data protection authorities when developing services with significant implications for privacy.

As your users made clear to you in the hours and days after the launch of Google Buzz, privacy is a fundamental right that people value deeply.  As regulators responsible for promoting and overseeing compliance with data protection and privacy laws, we hope that you will learn from this experience as you design and develop new products and services.

We would like to receive a response indicating how Google will ensure that privacy and data protection requirements are met before the launch of future products.

Sincerely,

 

Original signed by

Jennifer Stoddart
Privacy Commissioner of Canada

 

Original signed by

Alex Türk
Chairman, Commission Nationale de l’Informatique et des Libertés (France)

 

Original signed by

Peter Schaar
Commissioner, Bundesbeauftragte für den Datenschutz und die Informationsfreiheit (Germany)

 

Original signed by

Billy Hawkes
Data Protection Commissioner of Ireland

 

Original signed by

Yoram Hacohen
Head of the Israeli Law, Information and Technology Authority

 

Original signed by

Francesco Pizzetti
Garante per la protezione dei dati personali (Italy)

 

Original signed by

Jacob Kohnstamm
Chairman, College Bescherming Persoonsgegevens (Netherlands)
Chairman, Article 29 Working Party

 

Original signed by

Marie Shroff
Privacy Commissioner, New Zealand

 

Original signed by

Artemi Rallo Lombarte
Director, Agencia Española de Protección de Datos (Spain)

 

Original signed by

Christopher Graham
Information Commissioner and Chief Executive (United Kingdom)

 

Graf Mural


After watching this video of the graf mural painted at Propellernet’s new Brighton office it has been decided without doubt that once Crockstar gets some office space, we will be getting one of these done. Great video as well!

Rest in Peace Alexander McQueen – A Terrible Start to London Fashion Week

 Rest in Peace Alexander McQueen

McQueen’s Website Has Been Taken Down for the Time Being

Today the United Kingdom has lost one of their most promising talents. Alexander McQueen has committed suicide, it is reported by the Daily Mail. McQueen was best known for his skull designs, over-the-top color choices, and unbelievable tailoring. His cuts were unriavled, and the amount he has brought to the UK fashion scene if not the global fashion scene, will be sorely missed.

According to the report, McQueen lost his mother just days ago and was thought to be coping with the loss with a great deal of grief.

This year’s London Fashion Week is sure to be a dreadfully more somber event and McQueen was an inspiration to all young aspiring British talent.

My sincerest  condolences to his family and friends. Our hopes and prayers are with you.

A retrospective of his recent work will be posted over the next few days.

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About Me

This is the new home of the Crockstar Limited blog. The blog focuses heavily on trends in fashion music and the internet. The goal is to start an ethically sourced fashion label, but in the meantime the blog will offer insight into the world of an ADD fashion-loving internet geek.