Thursday, February 26, 2015

The Brits

The DVD remote had broken. That was the only reason folks. Yes I know it was a lifetime vow and I am sorry. I won't do it again. What? Write about it? Yes of course I will write about it. I feel it would be letting people down not to.

So, circumstances conspired to make watching The Brits necessary last night. For those who don't keep up, this is a satirical comedy programme about popular music. It is the industry's shop window of self-congratulation assisted by the children of Sun readers.

First the set. On stage there was a massive posse; a group of dancer/backer/on-hanger people who saved having to pay too much for backdrop. The arena was set out with a clear demarcation between the scrubbed and the unscrubbed. The celebrities, nominees and Simon Cowell sat around tables drinking champers. The hoi polloi were in the tiered seating heading back several miles. The tables were decorated such that an overhead shot appeared to be of a full box of chocolates.

The presenters were that well known duo PJ and Duncan, child actors from Byker Grove who had a hit once and managed to get nominated for a Brit for it. Since then they have made a living out of being professional Geordies Ant and Dec though no-one has any idea, without thinking about it, which one is Donnelly and which McPartlain, which little and which large and which of the two is the funny one. Come to think of it they may have been existing as a comedy duo with two straight men for some years.

From time to time comedians are put on stage to introduce awards. The wise ones (stand up John Bishop) make no attempts at humour but announce the winner, hand over the ugly statuette, and run off with the fee. The unwise (need I tell you this year it was Jimmy Carr again) make jokes about Madge's HRT supplies at which no-one laughs. The sound of thousands of weird people not laughing at once is an awesome one. A sort of silence of the odds. This effect was also used in auto-muting the vocal when Kanye West said something naughty. Since the backing track was not that complex, and the software pulled a bit of the music through the black hole too, and almost all the song was naughty, the effect was amazing. Norman Collier eat your heart out. That is how to do the faulty mic routine.

Hello darkness my old friend.

I drop in to the Brits every ten years or so and always search for the word which describes my reaction. It is like watching an amateur at a country fair having a go at dry-stone walling. Unassisted they would make a wonky edifice with no lasting potential whatsoever but you would be compelled to stop and stare. Come to think of it that is a genius analogy.

I began some time in the 1980s with Sam Fox, Mick Fleetwood and the dodgy autocue.

I revisited for Jarvis Cocker and the Michael Jackson protest.

Given my delight in the best of contemporary music it is always strange to hear nominees for awards of whom I have never heard, my home, car and life being Radio 1 free zones.

I usually wonder which audience elimination programme they won. Sam Smith. Sorry mate but who are you?

George Ezra sang his song.

The interviews involve telling people what a great year they've had, a statement with which they agree. 'It's been mad'. Then asking them how drunk they intend to get at the after-show party which is a great witness to the children of Sun readers.

The headline - Oh My God it's only Madonna - sang a song so dreadfully forgettable that after a few bars one of the backing singers grabbed her by the cloak and pulled her off stage. He failed to follow up with the Vulcan death grip or a blow to the head with an empty champers bottle so she got up and carried on.

This, in a world of warfare, political machinations and fascinating debates about the future of democracy, was the third item on ITV's self-generating news programme which followed.

I am going to buy some more batteries for the DVD remote today.

Tomorrow - the Kardashian bottom debate (cont'd)

No comments: