Wednesday, 23 November 2011
For those of you who don't know Growler yet, you will... he's a regular growl about town and he was so awesome on our LA trip, he played bass and guitar till the cows came home and then he ate those cows wrapped in a flour tortilla and covered in guacamole, I've been saving his burrito diaries for you (11 burritos in all; he fizzled out writing the blog as we neared day 9). Enjoy! xx P
Hot Burrito no. 11
The single-minded culinary pursuits of a hungry English man in the City of Angels
Day 1 – Rambos Mexican Truck, Eagle Rock
Order: Pollo Burrito
Pro’s: This was the maiden voyage into the LA tortilla zone, and I am pleased to say it didn’t disappoint. Looks can be deceiving – to purchase food from a truck I think has different connotations in the UK, ie a hot dog outside the football ground. But this was in a different league altogether – quality chicken, good consistency - we’re off to a flying start!
Con’s: I got the fiery hot red salsa in my eye. However, I accept full responsibility for this and is not a reflection of the proprietors of Rambos
Day 2 – Armon’s Diner, Eagle Rock (morning)
Order: Mexican influenced brunch: Sausage and Hash Brown served with refried beans, flour tortilla’s and fresh salsa.
Pro’s: My first breakfast of the trip, and the sight of Tabasco and hot sauce waiting on the table as I sit down re-assures me. By no means an exclusively Mexican order, but my insistence on having tortillas and refried beans means it qualifies for the run down. Let me just say, the hash browns were out of this world – a singular mass of crunchy goodness, as opposed to the service station filth I have come to expect.
Con’s: A slight communication barrier between myself and the waitress. I tried ordering a diet coke several times, and she thought I was asking for eggs
El Arco Iris Restaurant, Highland Park (eve)
Order: Quesadilla verde and tamal
Pro’s: The Quesidilla was simply delightful, lovingly topped with stringy cheese and guacamole. As part of the ‘combo’ deal I went for I could also choose another item and so I went for a beef tamal which was juicy and tender, and a welcome departure to some of the more traditional staples. The restaurant was a charming family run place too - perfect way to unwind after day one in the studio with Team Piney.
Con’s: Margharita’s were a touch on the weak side in my opinion. And also the verde sauce on the Quesadilla could have been just a notch hotter.
Day 3 – Misc food truck opposite Brannigan’s Cantina, Echo Park
Order: Pollo Burrito
Pro’s: Um. That I’ll never eat here again?
Con’s: I don’t even know where to start, alright? It was just a COMPLETE CATASTROPHE! After the glory that was Rambo’s on the opening night, I was lulled into a false sense of security when dealing with mobile eateries. After ordering my burrito, the wait for it to be prepared dragged on, which led me to believe they were rustling up something truly special. Alas no, it was a gloopy mess. Tonnes of onion and rice, barely any chicken. To make matters worse, my other half in the rhythm section seemed keen to get going before I had had the chance to at least mask this atrocity with hot sauce.
Overall rating: 2/10
Day 4 – Good Neighbour Restaurant, Studio City
Order: Breakfast Burrito with Soy Chorizo
Pro’s: We wandered for what must have been a mile in the blazing heat down from the studio, looking for a suitable diner and our prayers were answered when the Good Neighbour slid into view. I went for a breakfast burrito with soy chorizo – not because I’m vegi, but because of my morbid curiosity to witness a soy approximation of chorizo. And let the record state that I was very impressed indeed – great texture to the burrito, and served with crunchy golden potatos on the side. A popular diner with some of the glitterati who frequent the nearby studios so I hear – and I can see why. These guys would be great neighbours.
Con’s: I cannot think of one…okay I experience some toilet related difficulties shortly after but it was worth it.
Overall rating: 7/10
Day 5 – Diner, Mar Vista, Breakfast Burrito
Order: Breakfast Burrito with Tofu (no eggs)
Pro’s: Heading over to the ‘Westside’ with my good friend Alex we stopped in one of his local diners where I opted once again for the Breakfast Burrito. Now normally this dish relies predominantly on eggs which I don’t eat, so I substituted for tofu. The result was a perfectly tasty but not mind blowing burrito.
Con’s: Whilst there was nothing particularly bad, in the scheme of some of the incredible. A bit too much tofu which is was quite tasteless, so plenty of hot sauce needed to jazz this thing up. Also, the waitress seemed somewhat frazzled, possibly having already cashed in her life’s fun tokens – she forgot to bring me my drink.
Day 6 – Swingers, Santa Monica, Breakfast Burrito
Order: Breakfast Burrito with Tofu (no eggs)
Pro’s: This particular diner is well renowned, and has a sister restaurant over in Hollywood which was the first place I ever dined when I visited LA for the first time nearly a decade ago. So this felt like something of a homecoming for me, and was not disappointed. The waiting staff were on the money, and the presentation of my burrito was immaculate – sat there with a dollop of salsa and guacamole on top for a king. I didn’t know whether to eat it or marry it! And it didn’t disappoint in the flavour stakes either – so much better than yesterdays effort. Tofu to rice and beans ratio was just perfect.
Cons: Hmmm. A very mild sense of self importance pervaids amongst the clientele of this place – I know I’m in LA as opposed to Preston, but just slightly more tangible in here. No bad things to say about the food though.
Overall rating: 5/10
Day 7 – Café, Echo Park, Breakfast Burrito
Order: Breakfast Burrito, no eggs
Pro’s: This particular breakfast burrito was served up to me by a lovely guy who knows Rob Campanella, and as he handed it over he said ‘made with love.’ Such sincerity and warmth I was yet to encounter in other eateries on this excursion. Whilst by no means the most substantial burrito, it was perfectly delicious and I particularly enjoyed the way it was toasted to perfection. I had a vision that Costa Coffee should try and invent an approximation of this particular style of burrito to serve at service stations across the UK.
Con’s:No sides with the burrito as standard, and a little toilet trouble afterwards. But otherwise good.
Poquito Mas (?) Studio City
Order: Pollo Burrito
Day 8 – Pinches Tacos, Sunset
Pollo Tacos x4
Day 9 – Foxy’s Resturaunt, Glendale
Thursday, 22 September 2011
Some of you may be hearing the new Piney single Oh Lies on 6 Music – and thank you 6 Music for playing it! We are well chuffed that it’s out October 10th! If you want to hear it now you can stream it on soundcloud innit? http://soundcloud.com/search?q%5Bfulltext%5D=piney+gir I’m a bit new to sound cloud, I hope I’m doing it right… I have my trusty Guy Friday to help
Meanwhile we’ve been everso busy making a video for Oh Lies…
Here are some frightening photos on flickr
I have to totally big up Mike Smith our bass player for directing and filming it! WOW! Corin Hardy is editing it as we speak; he’s done some pretty amazing things see? http://www.corinhardy.com/about, David Lupton did the scary make up http://www.david-lupton.com and Joe Smith our drummer was our production assistant (which mainly meant swatting the bees away from the fake blood made of maple syrup and red food colouring – bees love it!).
What’s magical about these four boys working together is that they were making horror films on Super 8 when they were kids and we’ve reunited them to create this zombie featurette in the same way they used to work, on Super 8 film, shot sparingly. Soon the magic will be unveiled and I’m just bursting to see what it looks like! Meanwhile these photos will just have to do.
Patience is a virtue they say.
p.s. here’s a little trivia for you… Piney forgot to take a change of clothes to the video shoot and had to ride the train home from Brighton-across London covered in blood… there were many stares but nobody called the police, phew!
Wednesday, 31 August 2011
As promised I've uploaded some of the snaps from our LA adventures, so now you can see the super cool studio that we got to spend our days in and sheesh it was so darn sunny I even did some vocals in the garden by the pond.
Rob was a pleasure to work with, and it was super that Nelson stopped by to play with us. G played the drums in a drummer's nook, Growler was rocking bass and guitar too sometimes.
Garo got to play the Mellotron which we were all impressed with (a real vintage Mellotron!)! And Sammi did some gorgeous BVs...
Gutted I didn't get a photo of Noah the fiddle player he was AMAZING, but you can hear his stylings on the album.
Thanks for the memories guys, Geronimo! is out in October, and I just can't wait!!! Meanwhile enjoy the photos!
p.s. I might be able to get Garo to explain which guitars we used from the wall of guitars in a future blog so watch this space!
Monday, 25 July 2011
Right, so I've been neglecting this dear blog, but it's for good reason you see... I've finished mixing and mastering the album that we went to LA to create. I never realised all the faff and behind-the-scenes work that goes into getting an album ready for the world until I made and album of my own and it doesn't really get easier. If anything, the more you know, the more you have to do, ha! Sheesh! It's hard bloody work for a DIY chick like myself but I wouldn't change it for the world.
I have to big up Ian at Damaged Goods who's been so awesome through all of this, and my new manager Lisa who's been super helpful too... so thanks peeps!
Anyway, I FINALLY got round to posting some photos on flickr of our Camden Crawl gig at the Jazz Cafe, it was a super fun weekend and we loved playing. Good times! You can see the pics here if you like
The last Roadshow gig is in a couple of weeks, which I'm kind of sad about, but kind of excited to do the new stuff live because it rocks (of course I think it rocks! but I think y'all will too). It's a pretty chugging album that'll make you wanna jump around I think! I hope. So it will be an extra special final Roadshow gig. There's so much to look forward to, it's a little overwhelming!
It's the scary bit now where soon I'm going to let go of the new album so you can all hear it. I have trouble letting go. I hope you all like it... meanwhile enjoy the Camden Crawl snaps, it's about time I shared them.
Friday, 20 May 2011
Sorry... but I've been a busy lady! In the past 6 weeks I've been to LA to record an album. We've been beavering away in the studio getting all the tracks ready for overdubs next weekend (with brass players and crazy classical percussion and a few extra vocals even). I can't wait to hear it when it's done.
Soon I'm going to start uploading our LA Stories, so keep an eye out for new pics, studio facts, burrito diaries and all that good stuff. It was super good times!
Meanwhile have a great weekend, I'll be tethered between Galia Psapp's hen do, and stu-stu-studio.
Tuesday, 15 February 2011
Phil Collins said it best when he exclaimed "I can't dance, I can't talk..." in his early Genesis days. The thing is, neither can I! What's even freakier about me and Phil Collins is that we are both singing drummers (granted I haven't drummed for a while, but I did get a start on the ol' drum kit and studied percussion for 10 whole years, that's a true story!)
But back to the dancing thing, my lack of coordination doesn't stop me punching the air at the indie disco, it doesn't stop me throwing my bag on the floor and jumping around at the aftershow party and it certainly doesn't stop me from dancing and dusting the flat at the same time. It just means that I look silly when I do it.
So, I've started taking dance lessons, in fact tonight is the first one! I hope I don't stumble over my two left feet. I am hoping in a few weeks or, let's face it, months I will be swanning around town like Ginger Rogers.
Phil Collins, eat your heart out!